Posts Tagged ‘devshirme’

h1

Recalling the post-Ottoman tax on non-Muslims

November 17, 2011

In November, 1942, the government of Turkey imposed the varlik vergisi, a tax on wealth, assets, and capital, that was applied mostly and at the highest rates against Turkish non-Muslims.  The rates were often higher than 100 percent of one’s total wealth.  The non-Muslims who could not afford to pay the tax where railroaded off to forced labor camps.

A recent article from Today’s Zaman noted that, “Within the scope of wealth tax payment requirements, 1,229 non-Muslims were sent to Aşkale via the Haydarpaşa railroad station in İstanbul to perform the jobs assigned to them.”  According to Wikipedia, 21 non-Muslims died at the labor camps.  The government collected over 320 million Turkish lira (approximately 270 million USD at the time) from Assyrians, Chaldeans, Greeks, Jews, and Armenians through the tax.

The varlik vergisi showed that the devshirme blood tax and the jizya against non-Muslims from the days of the Ottoman Empire could not be permanently purged from the “secularist” Turkish regime that replaced it.

Fortunately, Turkey rescinded the tax in 1944.

However, Turkey continues to impose the jizya against Greek Cypriots to this day, according to published reports.

Discriminatory taxes against non-Muslims in the post-caliphate Islamic world are much overlooked but not uncommon, whether it was the Turkish varlik vergisi, Malaysia’s bumiputra system, or government-endorsed jizya against Sikhs in Pakistan, Jews in Yemen, and Copts in Egypt.

h1

Your money and your sons

January 23, 2011

How Ottomans taxed Christian Bosnians

Lee Jay Walker offered up an alternative historical explanation of the conflict in the Balkans via the Pakistan Christian Post on Wednesday.  The Christians in Bosnia were long-suffering victims of the Muslim Ottoman tax system including the wicked devshirme and the jizya.

The hidden “Islamic jihad” and dimensions of Bosnia have been ignored prior to the conflict, during the civil war in the early 1990s, and afterwards. This misrepresentation of reality meant that thousands of Islamists from all over the world were aided by so-called democratic powers and the role of the mass media and many leading academics served the ambitions of Al-Qa’ida and other outside powers. Therefore, what is the reality of Bosnia and why is it claimed that all communities resided in peace and tranquility?

According to many naïve Western commentators Bosnia was a tranquil reality where Muslims and Christians lived happily together for many centuries. Not only this, the Western rhetoric claimed that in modern times it was the Muslim leadership in Bosnia which was open-minded, democratic, modernist, and which desired to maintain a multi-cultural and multi-religious society.

The truth could not have been further and Western commentators and academics are clearly glossing over reality because the Ottoman Empire was not based on enlightenment. On the contrary, the Islamization of Bosnia was paid by the blood of Christians and the slavery and forced conversions of young Christian boys who were forcibly converted to Islam via the barbaric devshirme system.

Read the rest of this entry ?