By William J. Federer
Muslim groups are proposing a 13-story $100 million mosque in the most prominent spot in America – the heart of downtown New York City near the World Trade Center site.
Is this mosque a sign of America's tolerance, or is it a sign of Muslim conquest?
The past may hold answers:
In 630, Muhammad led 10,000 Muslim soldiers into Mecca and turned the pagans' most prominent spot, the Ka'aba, into the Masjid al-Haram Mosque.
In 634, Rightly Guided Caliph Umar conquered Syria and turned the Christians' most prominent spot, the Church of Job, famous for being visited by Saint Silva in the fourth century, into the Mosque of Job.
In 637, Caliph Umar conquered Hebron and turned the second-most prominent spot in Judaism, the Cave of the Patriarchs, into the Ibrahimi Mosque. (This was repeated by Saladin in 1188.)
In 638, Muslim generals Amr ibn al-As and Khalid ibn al-Walid conquered Gaza and turned the prominent fifth-century Byzantine church into the Great Mosque of Gaza.
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