Western civilization began in the Middle East: Judaism and Christianity, as well as Islam, were born there. For over a millennium, the Islamic empires were ahead of the West in learning, technology and medicine, and were militarily far more powerful. It took another three hundred centuries for the West to catch up, and overtake, the Middle East. ...Read MoreWestern civilization began in the Middle East: Judaism and Christianity, as well as Islam, were born there. For over a millennium, the Islamic empires were ahead of the West in learning, technology and medicine, and were militarily far more powerful. It took another three hundred centuries for the West to catch up, and overtake, the Middle East. "A Brief History of the Middle East" enables us to see the past in its proper perspective, giving the Middle East its full due in creating the world in which we live today. Iraq is at the heart of Middle Eastern history, a place where Jews, Muslims and Christians lived for over a thousand years in harmony. Why does it seem different now? What is the place of Jews in the Middle East? Why does Osama bin Laden see 1918, with the fall of the Ottoman Empire, as the year everything changed? These issues are explained in historical detail here, in a way that deliberately seeks to go behind the rhetoric to the roots of present conflicts. "A Brief History of the Middle East" is essential reading for an intelligent reader wanting to understand what one of the world's key regions is all about.Read Less
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