When the Caliph Helped Ireland – Untold History


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Ustadh Wahaj Tarin

Ustadh Wahaj Tarin is the Dean of Students at the Australian Islamic College, President of Islamic Motivations, conductor of weekly Halaqas, and a prolific Khateeb

Latest posts by Ustadh Wahaj Tarin (see all)

22At a time when really difficult images are being associated with Islam, we have a long legacy of contribution to the world. This legacy should not be hijacked by rogue organizations. The world and the media should not do the injustice of associating the classics with the fake. What did this Muslim world look like from the inside? First, it was a civilization of kindness and empathy which supported other humans.

During the Great Famine in Ireland (1845 – 1852), a disease filled the potato plantations, which was the main food at the time especially amidst the poor. The harvest was severely affected that year; a lot of people died, and the Irish dubbed it as the Great Hunger. They say a million people died, and a million people fled from the famine. A million is a lot of people to die.

It isn’t that there wasn’t any food in Ireland; there was, but Ireland was subjugated by the English. A lot of property was owned by the English, so in order to pay for living on the land, the produce was sent back to England and the poor died in Ireland.

Eventually, news of this reached the Ottoman Caliph that Christian people were dying in Ireland out of poverty. Please help. This was the time when the Ottomans had some internal problems as well. However, the Caliph felt a huge sense of responsibility and out of his deep humanity, he promised: “I will send ten thousand silver pounds to Ireland.”

However, he was not a reckless ruler and recognized that Ireland was under the stewardship of Britain. He found out that the British queen Victoria was giving only two thousand silver pounds to help out Ireland.

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