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Old 13.09.2016, 15:46
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Re: All about Muslims (in the wake of terrorist attacks in Europe)

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The Ottomans on the whole were smart rulers and understood the concepts of carrots and sticks and also of recognizing talent when they saw it and giving people opportunities. And they weren't racist. they didn't discriminate according to ethnicity. So the son of a goat herder from an outlying region could work his way up to high office and then later in life return home, bringing with him Turkish culture and values and Islam.
You must have read a particularly perverse history book. If life under Ottoman rule was only honey and milk, as you describe, why would all those peoples under Ottoman rule constantly fight for freedom? There is a grain of truth in what you said in the early times of the Ottomans, when they were a consolidated power that swept an area bitterly divided among many small rulers who were constantly battling each other and the common folk was naturally suffering. When the Ottomans occupied the Balkans, they brought a certain sense of stability. However, they very quickly disintegrated into a society into which religion (Islam) and class-belonging (spahi) was above everyone else. They were brutal against each other (after Sultan Mehmet all Sultant were killing all their male relatives as a matter of policy to ensure to contest to the throne), they were brutal against the Christians (the son of a goat herder who you describe was much more likely to have his son taken at a very early age to feed the ranks of the military, forcing him into Islam and never to see his family again. Sometimes, such units were sent to destroy the very same villages from which they were taken as kids)
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