Taqqiyah in Practice

Constantinople was attacked, and under the energetic and ruthless Sultan Mehmet II, the Ottomans began the siege of the Byzantine capital in April 1453 – this despite the fact that at his accession to the Sultanate in 1451, he had sworn on the Qur’an to the Byzantine embassy that he would respect the latter’s territorial integrity. tObviously, an oath to an infidel meant nothing. There is no way that the siege of Constantinople could be classified as ‘defensive’ jihad: rather, it was an unprovoked act of aggression. Hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned, the city fell on Monday 28 May 1453. It should be noted that on 6 April Mehmet II had sent Emperor Constantine XI a message, the terms of which the latter declined, ‘declaring that, as Islamic law prescribed, every citizen would be spared if the city would surrender without resistance.’ The implication was clear: if the city resisted, the lives of its residents would be forfeit.

Smith, Michael Llewellyn, The Fall of Constantinople, in History Makers magazine No. 5, (London, Marshall Cavendish, Sidgwick & Jackson, 1969), p. 190, quoted, The Massacres of the Khilafah, Walter Short

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