Muslim World: The True Faith Timeline

Prologue: Chapter 1
  • Muslim World

    The Gates of Gaul: Tours

    The year is 732. A huge moorish army attacks Tours, the battle is bloody, but its commander, Algafeque, is cunning, a cavalry force composed of 3,000 brave knights who had placed Charles Martel in a trap and hiding how many the franks arrived, attack the franks behind their backs, desperate and with their soldiers disbanded, Charles Martel is forced to retreat to Paris.

    Meanwhile, the great moorish army advances to Orléans and put siege to the city, but they are forced to give it up because of the exhaustion of the brave and fearless arab warriors. So they organize a treaty with the franks, the tyrannical Treaty of Blois, that brought the recognition of annexation by the arabs of Aquitaine and Occitania, significant losses for Christendom, bringing the christian europe on the nerves. At this moment of crisis, what will Europe be made of?

    6 years later the franks call for help from the Pope to regain their lands. Seeing that the arab victory in Tours opened the doors to the muslim expansion in europe he declares that, in a vision, God told him that the Europe must be rid of the muslim plague, he waits the response from the pope.

    Will the last fight, the last effort against the Islamic threat, happen?
     
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    Prologue: Chapter 2
  • Muslim World

    Frank Intervention: A Holy Exchange of Favors

    January 27, 738 - Rome
    The Pope receives the letter, and reads it attentively, he knows that the muslim victory in Tours has opened a free passage for a possible large-scale invasion of them, [1] but he also has his needs, and establishes conditions to accept, Charles Martel has to help him to expel the lombards, who are invading the center of Italy and, at this point, put Ravena in a state of siege. Such terms with Charles Martel, desperate to gain more foreign support after the great losses in the Treaty of Blois, accepts.

    Now, the franks mobilize their army and, at the end of March, prepare to cross the Alps on a difficult crossing, arriving in Nice after 3 weeks marching through the mountains. After arriving, they resupply and go towards Savona.

    Upon arriving there, Charles Martel sends a detachment to recognize any garrison that may be in the city, and the same confirms that there are soldiers surrounding the city [2], the same ones that almost detected it. Soon, Martel decides to lead a surprise attack against the lombards. At night, a detachment of about 4.700 brave soldiers attacks the lombard garrison in the town, which has about 2.900 men, those who quickly fall into disorder [3], the lombards after 2 hours of fighting are surrounded by the arrival of a detachment of cavalry and surrender the city to the franks, Martel uses it as a logistical point for the rest of his campaign and resupply himself.

    Thus, Martel dispatches small forces to Acqui and Asti [4], with the purpose of securing the north of its troops and goes towards with its main army for its next step, Genoa.

    [1] - Muslims are in internal problems (which led IOTL to the Abbasid Revolution), but the Pope does not know this, so in his view the threat is real
    [2] - The estimate given by the detachment was about 4,000 soldiers, which made Charles Martel prefer not to attack at the same time that he arrived
    [3] - The Lombards definitely did not expect a frank attack, especially after the defeat against the Muslims
    [4] - 2 forces of about 7,500 soldiers to guard the flank of the main troops and to secure the control of the plains to the southwest of the Po River.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 3
  • Muslim World

    The Battle of Cremona: The Fall of the Lombards

    When arriving in Genoa, Martel after showing the size of its army [1] for the local authorities, obtains a fast surrender of the city without major problems [2]. So soon resuppling and marching to Piacenza, using the passes between the mountains for a faster journey.

    After crossing the Trebbia River and arriving in Piacenza, Martel orders his brave army to go with everything against the forces of the city, that counts 6,200 soldiers under the command of the Duke of Piacenza, the Duke had ordered the construction of fortifications after receiving news of the arrival of the frankish army, after the first total attack of the army of Charles Martel, almost 5 times greater than the one of the enemy, 4 the duke's forces manage to prevent the success of the frank attack, but at the cost of heavy casualties for both the sides, after reorganizing, the army of Martel goes to a second attack, that surpasses the damaged and tired army of the duke easily, the same surrenders to the forces of Martel, that with captured Piacenza, cross the Po River and puts Pavia in siege in mid-May.

    But Martel receives a letter from the Pope that the lombards are coming to the rescue, and the same soon broadens the siege and leaves a small fraction of his army to keep the siege alive [3], with the major part he stands in Cremona, with the aim of intercepting the Lombards in a favorable position, the first great battle of the Charles' campaign is eminent.

    In early June, the lombards arrive near Cremona and soon Charles intercept them, starting the Battle of Cremona.

    With a strong 23.000 man army, Charles manage to be on the defensive against the 21.000 lombard army, and try to trap them opening purposely his left flank to the enemy cavalry by moving his infantry to make something like a semicircle. The lombards do exactly what Charles want and do a cavalry charge in the frank exposed left flank. When the lombard cavalry reach the enemy lines, frank pike square formations who are in the rear of the army, await for them and, with help of frank cavalry detachments who are too in the rear, repel their charge, causing heavy casualties and leaving the right lombard flank vulnerable, possibiliting a full frank charge here, causing a collapse of this part of the lombard army and consequently of all their forces (except those that can flee).

    After his great victory, making the Lombard army succumb, Charles Martel returns in its siege to the Pavia, managing to capture the localities near the city completely with certain facility, and sending small detachments of troops to put the area around him under his control. Meanwhile, Liutprand, the king of the Lombards, defended Pavia with 6,400 soldiers hoping to receive relief from a new Lombard army [4].

    [1] - An army of approximately 26.000 men
    [2] - There were a thousand soldiers making the garrison of the city, and there was not a beautiful one there of a plan to defend the city
    [3] - The goal was simply to keep the siege "alive", in this case, to prevent the enemy from finding out that he did not have as many troops as before (which helps by the factor that he was waiting for the army that was coming to the rescue)
    [4] - He does not know of the defeat of the reinforcement in Cremona
     
    Prologue: Chapter 4
  • Muslim World

    The Caliph's Table: The Value of Expansions

    April 14, 739 - Damascus
    Hishām, the Umayyad Caliph, has just received a report on the military campaigns ordered by him in the last years, he starts to read.

    "After the defeat at the Battle of Marj Ardabil at the beginning of the decade, Our brave men succeeded in defeating a Khazar army in Mosul, forcing them to retreat north of the Caucasus mountains. Assuring our control to the south of the mountains.

    In Transoxiana, after our hurtful defeat at the Day of Thirst and the pyrrhic, but glorious victory at the Battle of the Pass, with our new strength and much more strengthened [1], our governor Asad managed to defeat the Türgesh decisively (close to the present Sheberghan), and gave us the chance re-establish the Umayyad control in the Transoxiana [2]. And the Khagan was assassinated, leading to a apparent civil war in the Khaganate of Türgesh, disappearing any greater danger to our dominion in the region. [3]

    Against the Byzantines, our men continued their regular attacks greatly, having as greatest achievement the capture of Akroinon (Afyonkarahisar, Turkey)."


    With Hishām knowing of the cessation of the campaigns in the west, he began to establish Akroinon as a permanent point, with the construction of a fort in the city, thereby establishing a favorable position in Anatolia [4]. Hishām also orders campaigns to take Transoxiana with the end of Türgesh danger in the region. An expedition is also prepared to capture the principalities of northern caucasus. The strongest Al-Andalus establishment also goes well, with the fighting cessing allowing better Caliph control in the region.

    [1] - The victory at Tours breathed new life into the caliph, who ordered a renewed new campaign to secure control of the region in 736, after Asad (governor of khorasan) suppress Harith's insurrection
    [2] - Also struck a nice blow to Khagan's prestige
    [3] - IOTL the berber revolt did not allow the Umayyads to seize the opportunity of the civil war
    [4] - Remember this, will be VERY important later
     
    Prologue: Chapter 5
  • Muslim World

    Fulfilling the Holy Agreement: The Surrender

    May 26, 739 - Pavia
    A noble messenger arrives at Charles Martel on the afternoon of May 26, and he arrives, implying: "Oh, Lord Charles, i come here to deliver you a message of peace on behalf of my king, Liutprand"

    Charles immediately requests the delivery of the message, which is passed, it is a request for surrender, it has been 1 year since the beginning of the siege, and no one came to the aid of Liutprand. Charles goes to meet Liutprand at the gates of Pavia, where, Liutprand officially surrenders.

    With this, in Rome, an agreement is made with the Pope. The Duke of Spolleto will submit to the Papacy, and the Lombards will return all lands taken from the Pope, and the Franks will receive the rest of the kingdom. [1]

    After the lombard danger was eliminated, the franks made their part of the deal. The Pope will now have to do his part, and help the franks in their attempt to expel the muslims. [2]

    [1]: Yes, Charles Martel will have the title of King of the Lombards
    [2]: So, I know that this chapter is short, but it is only to cover what was left in the last one (i.e the end of the campaign against the lombards)
     
    Prologue: Chapter 6
  • Muslim World

    This is Where They Die: A War Begins

    July 27, 739 - Rome
    He looks at the crowds, he looks at his chest and grabs the cross on his necklace. He is the Pope, Pope Gregory III, and he must do God's will, he knows he is to plunge Christendom into black and bloody times, where farmers abandon their fields to fight and so perhaps conquer riches, but come back with broken bones and heavy eyes with the horrors of war, shoulders hunched over by the weariness of the battle, all to be defeated and to return to their land and find her ransacked and burned, with weeds already being born again. But despite all this, he must do this, if not, who will stop the muslim advance? Who will offer eternal salvation to all!? He raises his head and says only two words: "DEUS VULT!!"

    The war begins, a frank army is organized in Marseille while the Pope negotiates with the venetians their support in exchange for Carthage and Sardinia.

    Soldiers march, cries of wars echo through the hills. We are in Toulose, and here again two armies collide, on one side the shrewd Algafeque, at the command of 60.000 soldiers, on the other, Charles Martel and his enormous army of 85.000 brave men. The battle begins calmly, small detachments advance to probe the forces of the enemy and soon after, return. Algafeque knows that he can not have the initiative of the attack, with the numbers so unfavorable he can not risk crossing the Garonne river in a frontal attack, then, as shrewd as ever, he sends a single man mounted, with a paper at hand, is a letter, but specifically, a letter to distract the enemy. While Charles Martel reads the letter, in the rear, the light and agile moorish cavalry retreats for the night to climb the river and cross it to the north. The soldiers camp without fighting each other, their commanders are not willing to cross the river without all the possible advantages, and so the day passes.

    Algafeque calculates the time well and by noon begins to move towards the other side of the river and suddenly gives the impression of having suddenly changed his mind and begins to return to the other side of the river. The trap seems to work and the enemy soldiers appear to be advancing toward the river. He knows that he is giving himself a disadvantage at the moment, but he hopes that when his cavalry attacks the enemies behind his infantry, he has already established advantageous positions on his riverbank. The time has come, the cavalry arrives behind the enemies with all their strength and speed.

    Everything goes downhill, Charles Martel remembers the ruse that defeated him in Tours and will not make the same mistake again. He had ordered the rear troops to remain alert and in square formations. Enemy cavalry arrives and is utterly repelled and disorganized, leading to a devastating onslaught by the frank heavy cavalry against the chaotic arabs. After this his soldiers continued advancing with full force and with constant reinforcements, the easy defeat of the moorish cavalry allowed that they did not lack soldiers in the frank lines. Agalfeque realizes its error too late, the frank heavy cavalry crosses the river by the right flank almost without opposition, because the arab soldiers are concentrated in the front line against the franks.

    The moorish forces are destroyed, the units lose their cohesion and several soldiers begin to disband, their commanders respond too slowly and the enemy surrounds them. Unfortunately for Agalfeqeue he can not escape and is taken prisoner by the Christians. The strong fall one by one with the garrisons of Christian conscripts surrendering as soon as they realize that their enemies are actually their countrymen. And so Gaul returns to his former owners.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 7
  • Muslim World

    Victory in Ground, Defeat in Sea: The Battle of Messina

    July 30, 739 - Venice
    He looks at the window, at that city of crystalline waters, thousands of channels. He is in Venice, and in front of him is the Pope.

    Negotiations are long, but they come to an agreement. The great venetian fleet will enter the war, and will eliminate the enemy fleet, guaranteeing the seas. In return the Venetians will have Carthage and Sardinia.

    August 8, 739 - West of the Ionian Sea
    The seas are not in the side of Venice, this he can guarantee. A huge storm, bigger than anyone an experienced navigator like he had ever seen. The winds blow water on the ships, when the waves do not, he ties itself on the mast so as not to be thrown into the sea in the great waves that flood the ship and soon after they leave, carrying food, drink and people.

    As time passes, about a week after the Venetian fleet finally comes out of the terrible storm, it is weak, the sailors tired and the supplies missing. Good Admiral as he is, he directs his troops to cross the Strait of Messina and land in Naples, and then set out in search of the Arab fleet and destroy it.

    August 10, 739 - Strait of Messina
    He moves quickly through the strait, but when crossing a large arab fleet appears on the side, he tries to escape, but the enemy ships are faster. The arab ships approach the venetians and from there several soldiers come out with spears pointed forward, among them some with swords, and at the ends of the ship archers shoot at the enemies. The venetian resistance is fierce, but they are finally defeated after their admiral, the Doge of the glorious city of Venice, Orso Ipato, to be shot down by an arrow, shaking everyone's morals on the ship, causing many to surrender and removing cohesion of the fleet. Only 3 of the nearly 110 Venetian ships escaped and arrived in Naples.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 8
  • Muslim World

    La Reconquête? The Siege of Barcelona

    September 9, 739 - Narbonne
    After reconquering Gaul from the muslim invaders, Charles Martel now heads to Hispania, home to tens of thousands of christians, oppressed by their governors.

    His first step is the capture of Septimania, which he uses as a point for the movement of supplies. With the autumn coming, he decides to wait until spring for, there yes, go with his army to enter Hispania with the aim of ridding the christians of good faith who live under the islamic terrorists. It will be a long wait, but a necessary one.

    March 11, 740 - Barshiluna
    Charles arrives in Barcelona, after leaving in march of Narbonne, having a friendly population in the villages in the way of its objective. Barcelona is an important commercial center and city of great christian population, but oppressed, it is his duty to liberate the good christians from the terrible arab dominion.

    How many soldiers does the enemy have? He does not know. But he says his 24.000 is enough for now. He arrives taking in Barcelona and the siege begins. But there is a problem, there is no way to block the ports of the city, he can try to assault the city, maybe there are few soldiers there, maybe many. What will he do? Nobody knows, not even him.

    April 2, 740 - Barshiluna
    It's been 3 weeks since his forces surrounded the city in a futile effort to leave the city without supplies. With each passing day their troops become more tired of waiting and the enemies are more excited because they are still resisting. He thinks what to do for the thousandth time, maybe he can dig a tunnel into the city, but he may collapse while he is still inside, but it may work, but the tunnel is narrow, it would be a great advantage for the defenders. Charles does not know what to do and ends another day after much thought.

    There is nothing to do, your best chance is to assault the fortress walls. He orders the catapults to fire and to build siege towers.

    May 4, 740 - Barshiluna
    It is certainly not going well, this is the third time they have attacked the hole they made in the wall, and this is the third time they are repulsed, always with heavy casualties, there remain only 17.000 men, the garrison of the city is bigger than expected. So far 1 month and 3 weeks have already passed.

    But one of his officers gives an idea, his name, Louis Bayeux. He tells Charles his ideas. Apprehensive, Charles Martel accepts.

    He orders that 3 merchant ships, which were stationed in Marseilles, be converted to military ships, in addition another 5 will be converted to simple shipping ships.

    Charles tells his troops that the siege will be long, with his army he marches through the region in order to spread an image of liberator to the christians, not looting and burning the villages as a conqueror.

    Happy, the local people support Martel and his army, they donate some supplies and inform the franks about the rumors of a huge arab army marching towards Barcelona, after hearing several reports and versions of the rumor Martel concludes that it is a force between 20 and 40 thousand soldiers.

    Martel will be able to keep his siege for about more 6 months with the provisions he has, the spring still in the middle, it will take much until winter prevents the franks from having their supplies. Despite this, he has to finish the siege before the moors arrive, he estimates that he have about 3 months, this will probably not be enough, he needs to adapt his strategy to something faster. And that's what he'll do.

    June 7, 740 - Barshiluna
    Soon after the ships are ready, one month after the request of Martel, they arrive at the port of Barcelona. Instead of simply blocking the ports, 600 soldiers are boarded on the ships. Despite this, ships are managed in a way that pretends to block the arrival of resources, despite the number too small for the task.

    During the night the 600 soldiers disembark trying to make as little noise as possible, a few minutes later the siege towers begin to move to the walls and the soldiers carry a battering ram toward the gates. Defending soldiers are alerted and awake, bells strike. The garrison of the city is directed towards the walls, no one gives attention to the port.

    The defense of the walls goes well, the franks are almost being repulsed, until a surprise force attacks from behind, in several points of the walls the Arab troops are in total chaos and are quickly defeated, but in others not. In this way the soldiers of the northwestern part of the wall can repel the franks easily and begin to assist the forces around them, the result of the battle is uncertain.

    The arabs are recovering quickly, the northern section of the wall has been recovered and in the west they are advancing rapidly, the franks are still disorganized, they have just climbed the walls, the concentration of troops is very uneven.

    But things do not go on for long, the arabs, after dominating the west wall, are unable to advance further with the arrival of the second round of the assault, so they are retreating and being killed, one by one. Until the end. Finally, after 2 and a half months, the siege of Barcelona ends.

    The population welcomes Charles with happiness, seeing the same as the liberator of them, but Martel has little time to celebrate, he suffered severe losses in the siege, and the big moorish army continues to come.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 9
  • Muslim World

    The Muslim Comeback: The Glorious Navas of Firajana

    June 21, 740 - Barshiluna
    Charles Martel finishes his rest and celebrations after the long siege of Barcelona. He knows that the Moorish army is coming, so he decides to march with the rest of his army left over from the siege to position himself more advantageously in the region behind the Alcanadre River, which has mountains in front of him, making it possible to ambush the Moorish army.

    Based on his ability in the siege of Barcelona, Martel sends Beyaux to Toulouse, where he is expected to meet with the reinforcements and command them until they reach the 15.000 left over from the siege.

    June 30, 740 - Navas of Firajana
    As he approached the desired spot, there was a great deal of engagement against the Frankish rearguard, catching Charles and his army by surprise, it was the swift moorish cavalry settling in the frank rearguard by surprise, they used the mountains to cover their movement, being able to attack the unaware franks.

    This generates a sudden drop in frank morale and organization, with entire lines of soldiers not knowing how to defend themselves from the moorish cavalry, but Charles reacts, and orders his heavy cavalry to face the moors at the rear, covering the retreat of the infantry, what works, with the battle of the frank cavalry against the moorish cavalry giving time for the frankish infantry to retreat behind the Cinca River.

    Soon, Charles knows he needs to know where the rest of the Moorish army is, and quickly, he knows that returning to Barcelona is suicide, in his situation, with his back to 200-meter hills and with the moorish cavalry having its uncertain position. He commands that on his flanks, squares of spearmen be made to fight a possible charge of moorish cavalry, he addresses his soldiers: "I do not guarantee you the victory, it will be difficult to reach her anyway. But I ask that you fight with honor, that by the end of the end, remember that we are here for the oppressed by the enemy, if we are defeated, it is because God wanted this, and we will have to accept, alive or dead, the will of God."

    The sounds of the moorish marching army ring as frank cavalry units rediscover their army, reporting to Charles that a giant army is against them, Charles soon picks up his organized army and puts him in defensive formation, he knows the odds are against he, unlike on his victory in Toulouse.

    Uqba ibn al-Hajjaj, the muslim general and governor of Al-Andalus, has an army of thunderous 48.000 soldiers. But the Franks stand firm, they will not run away from the fight.

    Uqba orders his cavalry to attack the flanks, archers drop their arrows on the front line, while the muslim infantry attacks with all force the center of the frankish formation, using their numerical superiority to create a wall of men advancing against the franks.

    Martel commands the infantry to give a spacing, he can not afford to be surrounded by enemy numbers, so the infantry cover more areas to keep the Muslims from encircling Martel's forces. Cavalry attacks are repelled by frankish square formations supported by the heavy cavalry, Charles seizes the opportunity to release the heavy cavalry to make minor attacks on the muslim flanks, which works, with the moors suffering considerable casualties in these attacks, in addition to give a moral to the troops of Martel. The confrontation, as incredible as it may seem, is in a stalemate.

    Charles, seeing the cavalry in an opportunity to achieve a miraculous concrete victory, orders a full attack of the same one towards the moorish infantry, but the recovered moorish cavalry was waiting for this, and manages to ambush the frank cavalry, forcing those that are left in the running. Uqba then orders his archers to focus their shots on the square formations of the frank flanks, and at the same time, a full advance of infantry in the center. The focus of the archers on the flanks leaves with certain shots, the squares vulnerable, and in a golden opportunity, the moorish cavalry advances in the flanks, entering the vulnerable formations, and next to the total attack of the infantry, collapsing the frankish army, surrounding them and annihilating the rest of the frankish army, catching Charles and his officers as prisoners.

    After the battle, Uqba shouted to his men: "A small victory for us, a great victory for Allah!". After a few days of rest, with information about the reinforcements in Toulouse being received through the Charles' officers, he marches in the catalonian cities, recapturing all of them in mass massacres of the local population, in revenge for his betrayal of the Caliph.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 10
  • Muslim World

    The Great Fall: The Symbolic Fall of Karkasun and the Great Betrayal

    August 11, 740 - Jayruna
    Uqba has just subjugated all of Catalonia back to his possession, Charles Martel, was killed after he refused to convert to Islam.

    Uqba then moves to Toulouse, where the frank reinforcement was being raised under the command of Bayeux, he resupply his army in the city of Girona.

    Uqba orders small units to serve as batters on the flanks and in front, so he can know the enemy's arrival before Bayeux, should Bayeux be coming towards them.

    August 17, 740 - Karkasun
    Uqba receives word from his scouts about the arrival of a frank force counting (deduction from them) with 20-30 thousand soldiers arriving in Carcassonne, Bayeux is coming, and Uqba knows that Bayeux does not know that he is there, much less that Martel is dead.

    Soon, Uqba orders his troops to move north of the city and cross the Aude River, thus surrounding the city with troops within, thus surrounding the city and the troops, without them being properly prepared.

    The plan works, and the city begins to be attacked by siege engines, which easily damage the weak fortifications of the city.

    Bayeux also does not have many stocked supplies, he knows that he should not last a month if he cannot expel the muslims.

    August 26, 740 - Karkasun
    Bayeux expects an attack from Uqba, a week ago, and no assault, he fears that Uqba's plan is really to starve he and his troops to death.

    A day later, Uqba orders an assault on the already very damaged walls of the city, which begins very well, with the walls of the northeast and south falling rapidly, the undersupplied frank troops are rapidly falling to the muslim forces, with the other walls also being captured by the Muslims, the frankish forces continue to fall, and at the end of the afternoon, Bayeux surrenders. From that surrender, Uqba would reconquer all territories previously insured by the muslims on Francia, and make advances to control the Loire region, raids in Provence also start to happen, these raids would be the law for next month, with reinforcements of the caliph also helping in them.

    October 2, 740 - Paris
    It's all a mess, Charles Martel has not yet returned and muslims have been attacking the entire countryside ever since, but 8 tired men arrive in Paris, one of them declares to everyone, "Charles is dead, the leader is gone!". Pepin and Carloman, sons of Charles, go to the men asking the veracity of their information, and they tell that they were frank soldiers in the battle, and managed to flee from the muslims.

    The two instantly declared themselves as the mayors of the palace, of Neustria and Austrasia, and make public the death of Martel. Also neglecting their half-brother Grifo, who they had combined to exclude him for being considered illegitimate, the same Grifo was on an alleged "trip" in search of his father, both Pepin and Carloman after knowing that Charles died, they think that the same destiny is the one of Grifo.

    September 27, 740 - Montpellier
    Uqba is meeting with no one but Grifo, he, suspecting some agreement between his half-brothers against him, and seeing the situation in favor of the muslims, he offers Uqba his conversion to Islam and submission to the caliph, in return, he would govern the frankish territories. Uqba says he accepts, and sends the request to the Caliph as well, that he was traveling to contact Uqba, the same also accept, and Grifo would begin his campaign by Provence and Burgundy with the help of Uqba, declaring himself Mayor of the Palace of Burgundy and Provence at the end of October.

    November 4, 740 - Paris
    Pepin brings together an army of 32.000 men, practically the limit of the frankish army actually, he argues with Carloman before going on his campaign, his goal is to end with his traitorous brother and start the restoration of the franks to their former glory. Every move is decisive now.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 11
  • Muslim World

    Nous Ne Nous Rendrons Jamais! The Siege of Paris and Pepin's Campaign in Burgundy

    November 8, 740 - Basel
    Pepin arrives in Basel, and demands the surrender of the city in his campaign. To his surprise, the city refuses surrender, so Pepin is forced to retreat to Toul and let the winter pass. The Muslims meanwhile are in a siege in Orléans.

    February 13, 741 - Dijon
    Grifo, now renamed, Aleanqa Al-Franku (Literally, Grifo the Frank), after passing the winter establishing its power in Burgundy and Provence, raises an army of 17 thousand men to attack nothing less than Paris, with the worst of winter already having passed, and knowing of Pepin's failed attempt to surrender Basel, he leaves some detachments of the Caliph's reinforcements to "defend" their territories, his plan is to keep Pepin busy and without communication with Paris while it is attacked.

    And so he marches with his army along the Seine River towards Paris.

    February 17, 741 - Basel
    Pepin arrives again with his army to the city, this time he soon prepares siege engines and catapults to shoot, he expected little resistance of the city, but finds a more fortified city and an intensely disciplined garrison, during the next 2 weeks, would occur 3 assaults on the walls by the franks, and in all of them they would be repulsed.

    February 24, 741 - Paris
    Grifo arrives in Paris, and begins a siege to the city, preventing Carloman from notifying Pepin of the surprise attack on Paris, both hoping that his half-brother would stay on the defensive, and not attack directly.

    However, in spite of the surprise, Paris was well fortified and ready for the attack, and the first assault of Grifo's troops is easily repelled by the frankish garrison, causing several casualties among its troops. This would be the end of several next assaults, Paris is firm.

    February 28, 741 - Basel
    Pepin's troops are able to enter after a successful infiltration of the city gates, collapsing the defenses and capturing the city, now Pepin moves to Besançon.

    March 3, 741 - Besançon
    Pepin arrives in Besançon, and is forced to make another siege, this should be longer due to the larger defenses for being the last stronghold protecting Dijon.

    March 22, 741 - Paris
    Still unsuccessful, the casualties are considerable, there are only 14,000 men left and the morale is low, while the franks have a gigantic morale for having firmly held several flushed Grifo attacks, looking at the numbers, Grifo decides to sit and wait while keeping the siege of the city, waiting for the arab reinforcements.

    April 2, 741 - Orléans
    After nearly six months of siege, the city of Orléans falls, with a successful assault of muslim troops, now Uqba can strengthen the siege of Paris.

    April 17, 741 - Besançon
    Pepin remains in the siege after 4 attempted assaults, being repelled in all of them, he then starts to aim to put the city in hunger, with the aim of making her surrender, however, his predictions indicate that Orleáns will hold until June, so he would have a month to capture the city, making this option impossible for your plans.

    He then orders his troops to prepare for the next assault.

    April 28, 741 - Paris
    The muslim reinforcements arrive and the Grifo troops are left to rest, the arabs also bring more siege engines which soon causes more damage to the walls of Paris. After seeing the reinforcements, Carloman desperately tries to warn Pepin by sending a hidden messenger through the Seine River, taking advantage of the transition between the arabs and Grifo's men. If this message will reach your brother, only time will tell.

    The decisive message was sent, its arrival can change the whole war, Paris will be the point that will define the Islamic expansion, being for the good of God or the good of Allah, see you in the next chapter.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 12
  • Muslim World

    The Muslim Side: Paris est Submersi!

    May 4, 741 - Paris
    After the transition is successfully completed, the attacks on Paris return to their regularity, and the walls of Paris begin to suffer greater damage by the new encircling machines. Not long after, Uqba orders the shots to go to a city gate, with the purpose of causing it to collapse. This causes a false sense of tranquility to the troops of the walls, with the diminution of the attacks to the same ones. With this, Carloman predicts that a muslim assault is coming, and has his soldiers prepare themselves for the attack.

    May 31, 741 - Paris
    At the beginning of the day a huge noise echoed over the troops on the walls that were being prepared for an assault, 45 Muslims were able to enter the gates. This instantly shocks the entire frankish army, with Carloman sending about 100 troops to defend the gate. At the same time, muslim troops were climbing the walls to take advantage of the destabilization of Carloman's troops. The reaction is chaotic, with many troops not knowing where to defend and Carloman himself not knowing much to do. The frankish troops falling one by one in the middle of the disorder, until a moorish soldier finds Carloman's body on a ladder in the north-east walls, he killed himself instead of the disgrace of surrender.

    After two days of plundering and looting of the city, Uqba and his troops feel as if they have finished with the franks once and for all.

    June 6, 741 - Paris
    After sending troops to subjugate the northern territories of the franks, Uqba receives a message warning of the destruction of the army of Grifo, Uqba is frightened, since Grifo had only gone to search for Pepin. Uqba realizes that he still has serious problems to take care of, and warns his officers that he will be moving to Burgundy, and end once and for all with open resistance. This will be the decisive battle, which will define the fact of both in this war.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Frankish Side: The Battle of Auxone

    May 2, 741 - Besançon
    Besançon falls after the assault planned by Pepin succeed, with the muslim troops surrendering the city after the successful attack of Pepin. After 3 days of rest, the troops begin their march towards Dijon.

    May 5, 741 - Plains of Auxone
    A great force appears in front of the frankish troops, Pepin is intercepted by his traitor half-brother, Grifo, who soon takes the initiative with a great frontal attack of its infantry, the franks take the defensive and position their shields against the enemy offensive.

    The "big" attack that Grifo thought he would destroy (I think you could tell that Grifo was a commander of very poor quality) Pepin's army is completely repelled, with his tired troops not being able to pierce the frankish defenses. Soon after, they are pursuited by the frankish heavy cavalry, resulting in a rapid fall in the morale of the troops, along with the counterattack of the rest of Pepin's troops results in a rapid fall of the army of Grifo.

    Until Grifo personally commanded a small cavalry unit with the intention of starting a recovery of his army, where in his charge, he is killed and any leftover cohesion ends up in the army, with the same being totally destroyed by Pepin. Soon after the victory, Pepin returns on his way to Dijon, where he will find a late, but unpleasant surprise. The path to the decisive battle was traced.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 13
  • Muslim World

    The Frankish Flame Goes Out: The Battle of Dijon and the Death of Pepin, the Resistant

    May 13, 741 - Dayjun
    Pepin arrives at Dijon and traditionally demands the capitulation of the garrison of 4,600 men in the city, he receives an already expected refusal, soon, he puts siege to the city.

    The city had its fortifications strengthened and stockpiled supplies, Pepin knows that it will not be easy to succumb to the city, but it is something he must do. The siege engines begin their work as the catapults fire against the walls.

    June 4, 741 - Dayjun
    After 3 weeks of siege, the situation was promising, costly? Yes, but promising.

    The defenders have already repelled four assaults, but they have incurred large costs in the process, with each assault the franks becoming increasingly close to take the walls. The franks have much more to spend than the defenders, this is also a fact. Pepin believes that the next assault in the city will end with a total victory of his forces. And with that, he can save Paris and the glory of the franks once for all. But a little surprise would come to him.

    June 8, 741 - Dayjun
    At 5:00 AM, this surprise arrives to Pepin, a large army, counting 42 thousand men, arrives to save the city, in his command, the ultimate saracen, Uqba.

    Pepin immediately orders an attack to prevent the total deployment of the enemy troops, however, the troops are quickly repelled and persecuted by the moorish cavalry.

    The moorish infantry then positioned itself by pressing the right flank of Pepin's troops, while the arab infantry made the front line against the franks. On the left flank, Pepin got close to an breakthrough, but it was quickly stopped with the return of the moorish cavalry. The rest of the morning would be marked by Pepin's attempts to get a quick definition of the battle, with all of them failing and costing important lives.

    Around noon, Uqba realizes that his plan has worked, to make Pepin's forces bleed in the face of the numerical and situational superiority of his forces, Uqba orders a full assault on Pepin's forces. Despite this, the main point of his strength, the cavalry, is dragged into combat with the frank cavalry, preventing its full use.

    The pressure despite the weariness is insured well by the Franks, but despite this, the most experienced moorish cavalry was out of action thanks to the frankish knights leaving them occupied, that was a decisive factor in the sucess of the franks.

    At 3:00 PM the arabs were almost able to breakthrough the right flank, but the brave men guarding it would not easily succumb, with a bloody battle beginning for the control of the right flank. Uqba then sends more men to press the same.

    Shortly afterwards, a new fighter emerges, the moorish cavalry, finally succeeding in getting rid of its outspoken counterpart, Pepin's terror was on the field, and then they launch into a charge against Pepin's left flank. Pepin's situation was not totally lost but certainly not good, with blood coming out on the right flank and the left flank suffering to not be razed by the moorish cavalry, using the squares was not so valuable with his troops not being the great soldiers who fought in Barcelona and Carcassone, but peasants who united fearing Muslim rule, despite this, he know that this was the real reason the frankish troops did not collapse, they know what their defeat will bring and want to prevent it at any cost, while a decisive blow not be done, this battle will not be decided so soon.

    However, at about 5:20 PM, this decisive blow seems to have arrived, descending from the walls, the garrison of Dijon attacks the frank rear, which quickly succumbs to the unexpected attack. Both flanks collapse and from a patriotic battle and last stand against the muslims, it all becomes a sore bloodbath. Pepin is killed in the process, and at the end of the day, a moorish soldier surrenders his body to Uqba, who orders a burial to him. Speaking the following words: "Brave men have to be recognized for their deeds, this is an example of a brave, devout and respectable man. I would like to have time to talk to him, but franks always bring armies to meet me, what choice do i have other than to defeat them?"

    And so, Uqba is appointed to temporary governor of Al-Faransa until one appointed by the Caliph is commanded, the old lombard territories are invaded by the Byzantines shortly after the news of the frank defeat spread. But this also puts the descendants of Rome on the alert, with one of the first acts of Constantine V being the preparation for a future counter-offensive against the muslim expansionists.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 14
  • Muslim World

    And yet more conquests: 741-743

    The victories of the caliphate in his recent military incursions had given much encouragement to Hisham, who soon ordered another incursion into the rich lands of India after being repulsed in Navsari (739) and Chittor (740), a large army of 48.000 men is gathered in Al-Sindh for a new attack on Chittor. The siege succeed with the new army, and after that, the Muslims manage to secure control of much of Rajasthan, however, further expeditions in indian soil would be severely repulsed in the coming years, the same would be for counter-attacks of the indians, with a stalemate being found.

    Some minor conflicts occur between umayyad and chinese troops on the border at Transoxiana, no major winner in such conflicts for the time being.

    Arab administration on Al-Faransa begins, Qarn Al-Waddi, a learned syrian administrator, is sent to be the new wila of Al-Faransa. Although the territory is newly conquered, no major problem occurs, with Al-Waddi not making greater repressions against the christian majority population, this ends up bringing several converts in the first years of umayyad dominion in Al-Faransa.

    The european territories of the caliphate are in good hands.

    Uqba returns to Al-Andalus after the campaign, he continues to repair the abuses that the population suffered at the hands of the last governor, and with the old visigoth judicial system being applied to the natives. Uqba also ends up making Al-Andalus a refuge for oppressed berbers, with the same being famous for its good treatment of the berbers, this ends up helping in the increase of the muslim population in Iberia, with major berber settlements surging across Iberia. The european territories of the caliphate are in good hands.

    Tensions are still very high in Al-Ifriqyia, largely because of the oppressive policies of Ubayd Allah ibn al-Habhab, yet, no further revolt occurs, although many conspiracies are armed.

    In the Byzantine Empire, in 742, Constantine V crosses anatolia to begin his counterattack against the muslims, but, at the same time, his brother-in-law, Artabasdos (Stratēgos of the Opsikion Theme) rebelled. However, in a few months the rebellion was suppressed because Constantine was not far from the revolt, since Opsikion was literally the basis of the attack. (Remember that I said that the arabs capturing Akroinon was going to be important later), but that forces Constantine to delay its offensive for next summer.

    On 6 February 743, Caliph Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik dies of natural causes, and is succeeded by his nephew Walid ibn Yazid ibn Abd al-Malik, Walid ends up giving up his idea of arresting the son of the ancient caliph, Sulayman ibn Hisham, due to his great popularity (even bigger than in OTL) after the capture of Akroinon (Remember that I said that the Arabs capturing Akroinon was going to be important after 2: Electric Boogaloo), since this could hurt her good image in the court.

    In August of 743, Constantine V begins his campaign against the muslims, attacking Antioch to go towards Damascus, the ultimate showdown begins.
     
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    Prologue: Chapter 15
  • Muslim World

    Save Damascus! The Home of a Glorious Dynasty

    August 22, 743 - al-ʾIskandariyya
    He is in Alexandria to deal with the caliph's internal affairs, but they knock on his door.

    He bad opens and hears "It is urgent, my lord, that the country needs you to come immediately." He leaves the room and follows the guard to the gates of the city, he barely has time to carry out the formalities when the disastrous news comes. "The romans have attacked my lord, Antioch must have fallen before i have arrived, i suppose they are already surrounding Damascus."

    But he can not do much, he is old, he has almost 50 years of life on his shoulders, so he is limited to one thing, he orders them to call Sulayman, the man he antagonized so much. Sulayman ibn Hisham was an experienced general, who had led several successful campaigns against the Byzantines, including the one who captured Akroinon.

    It is the turn of the younger, he thinks, and sees the glorious arrival of Sulayman, speaking to the army and organizing him for a difficult campaign. Then he simply sees the great departure of his general and his army over the sunset.

    August 31, 743 - Dimasriq
    Sulayman is finally, on the outskirts of Damascus, he sees the enormous army that the enemy presents, he calculates that it has a disadvantage of almost 2 to 1. This was not a fight against local byzantine forces, it was the joint effort of the remnant of the more glorious empire from the face of the earth, the legacy of Rome still remains, whether or not the eternal city has fallen.

    Sulayman commands his cavalry to make several small attacks on the byzantine forces that surround the city, forcing them to take defensive positions and, gradually, to retreat. Something that works, arresting part of the enemy forces around the walls, being pressed against such walls. But the romans are quick and comes a counterattack ot the byzantines, using their heavy cavalry against the arab forces, but Sulayman already expected this and the rest of the cavalry, which was in the rear of the army, out of sight of the enemies and commanded directly by Sulayman, quickly intercepts the enemy, repelling him after a small battle where they suffered considerable casualties.

    After much time pressed against the walls the byzantine infantry finally sees itself free and begins to reorganize. But soon afterwards the arab infantry advanced with everything against the enemy, with the byzantines advancing with the rest of their army, trying to use of their numbers to surpass the enemy. Seeing this, at the same moment Sulayman begins to retreat, taking positions at the top of a hill, positioning his archers in order to cause casualties and delay the incoming enemy, while his cavalry makes small attacks to the marching enemies, trying to cause more casualties and delay them a little.

    Sulayman retreats his cavalry to the other side of the hills, out of the enemy's sight. Then they enter the trains of arab supplies and pick up drums and bits of wood that would be used for encampments, bonfires, and anything that needs wood.

    Thus the cavalry makes improvised wooden figurines, which closely do not resemble a man but from afar they can easily be mistaken. So they advance and emerge from the hills on the left byzantine flank, riding at full speed, with the drums that should be for most of the Arab army being used there and hundreds of foot soldiers moving the wooden puppets, making it appear that there is a huge army there.

    Thus the moral of the byzantine forces suddenly falls sharply, with soldiers imagining tens of thousands of arab reinforcements coming, thus occurring desperate mass desertions, with soldiers trying to escape discreetly into the city walls. Thus the rapidly decreasing byzantine numbers and the work of preventing more desertions, in addition to the low morale and the almost surprise attack of the arab cavalry, enable the cavalry charge to cause a rapid collapse of the left byzantine flank. At that moment the main force advances with all, entering into combat with the demoralized and disorganized byzantines.

    The byzantines begin to perceive the farce, but now it is too late, the arabs are almost arriving in the byzantine lines and a brutal combat begins quickly. The cavalry on the left flank begins an attack on the byzantine rear, attacking the roman cavalry that tried to intercept it, managing after a certain time to win due to its great quality. After this victory against the enemy cavalry, it attacks the right side of the byzantine flank, allowing it to collapse and the center to be surrounded by forces and then completely annihilated. Thus after a hard battle the byzantine army is defeated, having only left some soldiers that have closed within the walls of Damascus, that however surrender quickly.

    After the rescue of Damascus, Sulayman and his troops rest in the city, with prayers being made in the Great Umayyad Mosque. He prepares for his great campaign, to punish the romans for their daring, once for all.
     
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    Prologue: Chapter 16
  • Muslim World

    The Betrayal of the Caliph and the Start of the Abassid Revolution

    September 2, 743 - Dimasriq
    After expelling the Byzantines from Damascus, Sulayman while resting securely in the newly reconquered city, he undergoes an assassination attempt, with pro-Caliph officers attempting to stab him while they debated about what way to take now, but being stopped by guards who arrived with the screams of the general who managed to deflect the stab. Then, indignant at the attitude probably taken from the Caliph (which he himself already knew that did not like him), Sulayman declares the secession of Damascus, yes, the glorious capital of the Umayyad Caliphate, after declaring: "The oppression caused by these lords is finished in this city, today is Damascus, tomorrow will be all of Islam, may Allah protect us in this mission of freedom!" The people celebrate, well, it is they who freed them from the byzantines who said this, because it would not be true?

    In the following days, Sulayman discreetly uses his great connections and support throughout the caliphate to offer the throne to the Abbasids of Abu al-'Abbās, descendants by right of Muhammad by Abdullah ibn al-'Abbās. Abbās accepts at the first opportunity, and begins his long-planned uprising.

    An uprising of loyalist troops to the umayyads happens within the Sulayman army, yet it is quickly stifled by the intelligence of Sulayman, and because of the lack of leadership for the troops.

    October 5, 743 - al-ʾIskandariyya
    The Caliph had scarcely awakened from his sleep, when an emissary comes screaming at the gates of Alexandria, he expects good news, such as Sulayman's success and death in Damascus, but they were waiting for him much worse news.

    "Lord, bad news, VERY bad news." says the emissary.

    "What?" asks the confused Caliph

    "Sulayman rebelled and one called Abbās also began to revolt in Jibāl! The last one have shown to have enough support among the Mawālī. The situation is not good."

    The Caliph climbs the stairs quickly after the news, and asks for a man to come with him, the same goes with him until the highest room.

    The Caliph quickly writes a letter and hands it to the man, right after saying "Deliver this crap to Mecca, we need all possible arab troops."

    "What happened my lord?" asks the man, confused.

    "Rebellions my dear, two of them, i need you to deliver this letter as faster as possible." explains the rushed Caliph.

    The man quickly took the letter and ran down the stairs, the Caliph could see through the window the same, taking a horse and rushing out of the city. The Third Fitna begins.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 17
  • Muslim World

    Aljabhat Algharbia! When Uqba crossed Gibraltar

    October 4, 743 - Qurṭuba
    Uqba was on another normal day under his rule in Al-Andalus, just sorting out the paperwork and periodically going out to check on the townspeople, until while sitting at his desk, a messenger without speaking puts a letter on his desk and get out, Uqba strange that action, picks up the letter, and reads.

    "A revolt has begun, well, i have started a revolt, i hope this letter will reach you before the Caliph's one, but well, i invite you to join in my mission to end the umayyad oppression of the lands and peoples of Islam."

    After the text of the letter, the terms of a possible adhesion to Uqba's revolt, the same after reading it stops a while to think, and next day take to the streets and declare Al-Andalus secession from the Umayyad Caliphate and the adherence to Sulayman (and Abassid) revolt. Local arab lords flee the peninsula only after the declaration. Since the entire strength of the complex lord system on the peninsula was destroyed with the Uqba campaigns to ensure strict control of the peninsula, after the statement, Uqba sends a formal request to Al-Faransa governor Al-Waddi to join the revolt as well, he so does that, "giving to the rioters" all the european territories of the Caliphate. Uqba's loyal army soon meets him at Al-Jazīra [Algeciras]. And enter the ships to cross the Strait of Gibraltar and disembark at Sabtah [Ceuta].

    Upon disembarking, the locals wonder what is going on until Uqba goes to the town square and declares his mission in Al-Ifriqiya to free the people from the umayyad oppression. And let's face it, the local berbers buy a lot of this idea, leading the revolt to almost the entire region of North Africa, Morocco in a few weeks is liberated by berber forces. And the same revolt rages throughout Al-Ifriqiya with the news spreading, Ubayd Allah ibn al-Habhab clearly responds by attacking the berber-backed Uqba troops at Qusanṭīnah [Constantine], but ultimately results in a decisive victory of the forces of Uqba. As a result, Uqba spends the rest of the year securing control over Al-Ifriqiya, being welcomed into the natives' graces upon arriving in Ṭarābulus [Tripoli] on December 21st.
    -----------------------
    The Byzantine Offensive: Siege of Afiun

    September 24, 743 - Afiun
    Afiun [Akroinon] was well prepared for a byzantine attack, being the border city and exactly the main defense for the muslim territories in Anatolia, as well having the newest news of the muslim fortresses. But it was far from a period of tranquility in Al-Anadul, the Sulayman revolt in Damascus generated a lot of political problems in the region, especially on which side to end in the strategic issues of Sulayman controlling Damascus, the governor of Al-Anadul, Fridrish Wayt 'uwf Nayait, declares support for the revolt.

    But they still had the byzantines to worry about, they are attacking Anquriu [Ankara] in the north, Qunia [Konya] in the south, and from what he received information is also being attacked Ard al-Rum [Erzurum] in Al-Arminiyah, attacks by all the sides, he knows that Afiun is the most exposed of all Arab possessions in the region.

    October 6, 743 - Afiun
    The byzantines set siege to the city, soon the siege engines begin their work, and the catapults begin shooting at the walls. There was only one problem, a big problem for the byzantines, in a few days of siege, Constantine received reports that the siege towers were failing to settle for the first assault, and that preparations were periodically being seriously affected by large stones being launched by the defenders. Constantine is outraged and goes to the scene to analyze the situation, he finds all the walls in a strange situation, tilted because of a base sloping in front of it, this ends up almost disenabling the siege towers, and many officials find it difficult to assemble a siege ladder because of the angle, this becomes true, with one month already unsuccessful in having the siege engines in place.

    After another 2 weeks, the byzantine army in the city was already well demoralized by the non-start of an attack, Constantine then orders a assault with the siege engines glued to the base of the structure and the stairs at an angle, he tried his luck. The soldiers climbing to take advantage of one of the breaches that the catapults had opened are quickly received not with spears, but with rain of stones, unusual, but greatly influenced the troops in their climb, with the towers unable to adequately protect the assailants. The defense on the wall to those who could climb, was relentless, the assault lasted all afternoon, with defenders inflicting heavy casualties on the assailants, that would be the dilemma of four more assaults by the byzantines in the next weeks and months.

    With many casualties and unsuccessful assaults, Constantine sees much of his army demoralized, not to mention those who died or were out of action during the siege, he drops the siege after 5 months, after seeing the byzantine army withdrawing, the muslim soldiers went into great celebration, they managed to do their job, prevent the Byzantines from advancing. It also showed Fridrish that his theories were right, that the byzantines would not be able to cope with these changes, this type of construction would be called "Fridrimin" in his honor for centuries. As for Constantine, we can say that he would not be well received at home.

    "Over time, Fridrimin would prove to not be unquestionable, especially in the mongol invasions, but it's importance throughout history should not be challenged, the sieges of Afiun and Qunia would be defeats that would be fatal to the romans with the unrest that Constantine would find on returning home without fulfilling his promise to wipe out Al-Anadul from the arabs, with the only major victories being the capture of Anṭākīyyah and advances in Al-Arminiyah, still weighing the defeat in Damascus. The arabs used well the advantage of having several fortifications with a defense that the enemy cannot handle, and not giving the decisive battle that Constantine so wanted to capture Anatolia in one big blow."
    - From "The Second Fall of Rome and How It Happened", Wahid Al-Almashia, Nahridam, Sultanate of Aljurzyan, 1201
    -----------------------
    Sulayman Strikes AGAIN: The Battle of Yarmouk

    November 16, 743 - Yarmouk Valley, near today Al-Himmah Al-Ordonyah
    Sulayman had begun his campaign establishing his power over Syria north of the Yarmouk River, after which he advanced south, until passing through the Yarmouk Valley, his scouts inform him of the arrival of an umayyad army, the umayyad army also knew of his arrival, so they both made camp for the imminent battle. The Umayyad army was under Abū al-Ward, the former governor of Jund Qinnasrin in Syria, who was forced to flee after the start of the revolt, his army had 60.000 soldiers, more than 2 times Sulayman's army. Sulayman picks up his cavalry units and drives them back into the valley hills, preparing for what in his strategy will be the fatal blow. He leaves the bulk of his troops on the flanks and a relatively weak center to surround the enemy in Hannibal-style.

    The battle begins in the next morning, the umayyad attack is fierce, with the arab cavalry attacking the center of the formation causing several casualties among the rebels, as they slowly began to retreat. The revolting position becomes desperate when they fail to secure their positions on the river bank and are forced to retreat hastily to the southernmost hills, the umayyads pursue the retreating troops, and their battle formations begin to break with this persecution, especially after spread news that a rebel had struck an arrow in al-Ward's head and he was dead. Sulayman, seeing the rupture in the umayyad formations, ordered the retreat to stop and led a powerful cavalry charge against the umayyad right flank, with the panic attacking the already confused umayyad troops, and a total massacre after that, who tried to repel the attack of the cavalry were attacked at the same time by the revolting infantry, and thus basically the entire umayyad army is destroyed by the forces of Sulayman. Despite this, al-Ward manages to escape, it is still unknown to where, the news of this Sulayman victory would become a great opportunity for the Abbasid propaganda, and that would not be missed. With abassid-backed riots arising all the way across Persia, and Merv falling to the abassid forces in the first days of December.

    After the battle, Sulayman would be able to capture Irbid, Amman, Akkā [Acre], Ḥayfa [Haifa] and Yafah [Netanya], establishing a good position in Palestine by next year. His next target, the sacred city of Jerusalem.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 18
  • Muslim World

    The Real Threat: The Desertic Three Days' Battle

    January 12, 744 - Coast of Cyrenaica, near today Brega
    Uqba after capturing Ṭarābulus at the end of last year, moved through the desert with his army of 33.000 men and continued his march along the coast towards Egypt.

    At Barqah inlet, shortly after experiencing difficulties crossing the secluded Gulf Coast of Sirte, help from the natives on this crossing was of great importance, especially after a group of Berbers notified Uqba of the arrival of a large arab army in the region supported by the umayyad navy. Uqba then sends emissaries to communicate to the western fleets loyal to him about the umayyad fleet in the region as he prepares for battle.

    The battle would begin in an attack by the berber cavalry after spotting an isolated and lost unit of the umayyad army, the attack would succeed, causing the unit to run back to the army, but the rest of the army would be warned of the attack, the arab archers would initiate a combat in the sandstones of the region against Uqba's archers, who respond by targeting mainly at the main army exposed in the sand, that combat would end indecisively to the point that night falls and the bulk of the two armies have not yet met.

    On the second day, the berber cavalry would strike again, this time meeting the arab cavalry led by the commander of the entire arab army himself, Tha'laba ibn Salama al-Amili, the berber cavalry would win this fight against the arabs, who retreated back to the main army, this would make Berber cavalry an eternal danger to the left flank (deeper into the desert) of the umayyad army. Archer shooting was also common, but still indecisive, both armies planned to end it soon on the third day of this desert battle, at the end of the day, Uqba's formation made a small strategic advance with units reaching the shores of the lake near the coast, still no contact between the bulk of the two armies. Uqba orders his troops to rest early to begin his plan early tomorrow.

    At the beginning of the third day, Uqba moves his troops to advance against the umayyads, Uqba's infantry takes the initiative in an early offensive, surprising Tha'laba's troops. The offensive focuses mainly on the lake shore in the region, completely driving out the umayyads from there. Meanwhile, the archers took care of the umayyad troops retreating into the desert along with the cavalry, inferring the retreat, and with luck may capture Tha'laba. With the attack on the left being successful, Tha'laba orders a further retreat into the desert to perhaps leave the sight of the Uqba army and flee with the army to Barneeq [Benghazi], but the retreat is condemned by the berber archers and cavalry and with this unfortunate surprise, the umayyad troops began to enter in panic.

    Tha'laba then tries to use what is left of his cavalry for a desperate attack on the line of berber archers, this attack fails completely and causes Tha'laba to die, with this news not taking long to spread and a encirclement seeming near as Uqba's infantry arrives at the rear of the umayyads, mass defections begin in the umayyad army with many simply running randomly into the desert and others surrendering. At the end of the day from the initial army of 52.000 Arabs, 26.000 were killed, 12.000 were captured and the rest is unknown. After the victory, Uqba's army would see the quick surrender of Barneeq and Barqa. The reaction to the defeat was the immediate sending of another army to prevent Uqba's capture of Ṭubruq [Tobruk], which would leave Miṣr [Egypt] vulnerable for further incursions. This army would be defeated at the Battle of Akramah on the outskirts of Ṭubruq, and would place Egypt in full danger of the forces of Uqba.
    -----------------------
    The Abbasids Control The West and East: The Battle of Borūjerd

    December 28, 743 - Borūjerd
    After the start of the pro-abbasid revolts in Persia, the abbasid advance in the east became much easier. With the territories of Central Asia rapidly being taken over and persian revolts in the process of seizing all Persian territories east of the Zagros Mountains, the umayyads still hold tight, and while some revolts succeed in connecting with the Abbasids and strengthening the movement, others are brutally suppressed by the umayyad forces, but this is far from significantly improving the situation, so Ma'n ibn Za'ida al-Shaybani, leader of the umayyad forces in the region, makes an ambitious plan to deliver a decisive defeat against the abbasids in the valleys of the Zargos Mountatins, knowing that a future abbasid foray there is inevitable.

    The abbasids under Abu Muslim begin their mountain range crossing from Qom, before leaving, Abu Muslim made sure to know the situation of all abbasid forces in Persia. It has 42.000 men, while the other 2 focuses of Abbasid armies have smaller numbers, one in the south with 27.000 under Qahtaba ibn Shabib al-Ta'i based in Šīrāz, and another in Al-Sindh with 34.000 troops, under Al-Hasan ibn Qahtaba ibn Shabib al-Ta'i, based on Zaidān. The latter would be having less work, with Al-Sindh just being pacified and Qahtaba ibn Shabib himself saying that in a few months his action in the region will not be necessary.

    The two armies meet near Borūjerd village and camp there, Abu Muslim organizes his army, he leaves the famous persian archers in the rear behind the infantry, divided into 2 smaller groups on the flanks and 1 in the center to support the infantry, the persian Aswārān cavalry on the left flank, with infantry strengthening the left flank and center. On the right flank, turkish archer cavalry is placed to withstand the attacks, being the most exotic component of the battle. On the other side, Ma'n ibn Za'ida focuses forces in the center, with the arab cavalry on the right flank and the arab archers next to the infantry line in direct combat with the enemy infantry, a cavalry reserve is also left in the rear.

    The day begins and Ma'n ibn Za'ida takes the initiative, the infantry advance in the center can almost breakthrough Abu Muslim's light infantry, but are forced to retreat due to the large casualties provided by the archers as soon as they managed to retreat the enemy infantry. But on the left, the light umayyad infantry meets the turkish cavalrymen, something that Ma'n did not expect to be in enemy hands, the battle is quite unfair, with the turks slaughtering the umayyad infantry, on the left flank the persian cavalry defeats the arab cavalry in their engagement, and soon after counterattacks. The weakened Arab cavalry is reinforced by the rear troops and balances the game, preventing the persian cavalry from going further. With this, Ma'n orders the cavalry to advance on the flank, this advance succeeds and the arab cavalry manages to reach the abbasid rear, but when they arrive there they are greeted by a rain of arrows from the persian archers who put most of their fire in them, as the umayyad infantry was retreating. But Ma'n, seeing this as an opportunity to have the decisive victory he so wanted, orders a full infantry attack on the abbasid troops.

    This total attack is initially furiously successful, but Abu Muslim is not an idiot and orders his troops to retreat, and the total attack ends up gaining more ground than abbasid dead for the umayyads. Abu Muslim then orders the Turkish cavalry that was free on its right flank to advance against the unprotected Umayyad rearguard, the turkish cavalry quickly sweeps the arab archers with their mobility advantage and are able to reach the rear of the umayyad infantry. At the same time, the persian archers united with the abbasid infantry manage to repel the arab cavalry, and soon after that, make a counterattack against the umayyad infantry, with the loss of the archers and the turkish cavalry already making confusion in the umayyad rear, the troops are soon decimated, and what was left of the army (basically the cavalry) fled after the destruction of the infantry, along with the cavalry, fled Ma'n.

    Ma'n would lose his job after reporting the overwhelming defeat suffered for Yusuf ibn Umar al-Thaqafi, the governor of Iraq. While Abu Muslim would secure all territories east of the Zagros Mountains for the abbasids, with an abbasid invasion of Iraq already being seen by the abbasids.
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    An Raid That Changed Everything: The Caliph is Dead!

    January 23, 744 - al-ʾIskandariyya
    The umayyad situation was not the best, only Iraq, al-Arabīyah and Miṣr they had in their hands, the court being in al-ʾIskandariyya [Alexandria], which was already threatened after the capture of Barqah [Tripolitania] by Uqba forces, and with still a chance of being isolated by the capture of al-Quds [Jerusalem] by the forces of Sulayman.

    Walid ibn Yazid, the umayyad Caliph decides to get together an army of 11.000 troops and take a drastic action, abandon al-ʾIskandariyya and Miṣr, cross the Negev Desert and head toward Madinah, reestablishing the court there. This decision is agreed upon by all court members and they leave al-ʾIskandariyya and begin their "pilgrimage". On the way they suffer from some coptic and native rebellions but nothing too radical.

    January 30, 744 - Negev Desert, near Shitim
    Crossing the desert, the trip was monotonous, with nothing to be impressed, just a normal day in the desert.

    Until late afternoon, an unpleasant surprise comes to them, riding camels and moving swiftly. They are cavalrymen of Sulayman, it shocks the whole court in the desert.

    They were going to secure the port of Ayla [Current Aqaba] in the Red Sea, a very bad luck blow to the umayyads. Walid orders his soldiers to protect the court and make a square defense of it, to repel the enemy.

    The cavalry then makes a very strange charge. They throw their knives at a point in the square, weakening the troops there. Soon after that, they make a full attack at that same point and can break the square with this prank, so by breaking the square, the infantry becomes useless, since the cavalry had the entire umayyad court ahead of them, the umayyads are soon brutally murdered. All at once, after seeing the court's death, the umayyad troops surrender to the cavalrymen and their leader, whose name would be recognized by more than one continent, Nudyia Harthi Al-Jizar, once a poor boy living in the suburbs of Damascus, now the one who killed the umayyads. The news would spread quickly after the forces arrived in Ayla, and would change the whole scenario of Third Fitna, but it would not end it yet.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 19
  • Muslim World

    Crazy Things in Byzantium: How a Campaign Led to Civil War

    March 2, 744 - Konstantinoúpoli
    After the failed campaign in Anatolia, Constantine would return to Constantinople disappointed, but he didn't expect what was to come.

    Upon your arrival, the court began to murmur, which, well, was not very unusual for when you return from an unsuccessful campaign. But he would soon see the news come as lightning.

    Voedos, Stratēgos of the Thracian Theme revolts against Constantine, and making a direct attack on Constantinople, shortly after word spread through the roman courts, Constantine was brutally murdered while coordinating the city's defenses, the killer was probably one of several Constantine's enemies at the court. Soon after, Voedos enters Constantinople and is crowned emperor, being supported by the regent of Constantine and the Patriarch, being Voedos I the Thracian.

    April 9, 744 - Athína
    Peace would not last long, after fleeing Constantinople after the revolt, Constantine's brother (and soon heir by right of the throne) Kosmos gathered loyalist troops and made a deal with the Stratēgos of Hellas, Nicopolis and of the Peloponnese, and began his revolt, and at the same time, a civil war that neither side would predict the outcome, and yes, it would be horrible.
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    The Abbasids Conquer Iraq! The Battle of Fawzeala'arabji​

    February 14, 744 - Left-Bank of the Tigris, near Nahrawan
    The abbasids under Abu Muslim crossed the Zagros Mountains in late January, and for a time, without much military opposition, until they met an umayyad army led by the governor of Iraq himself, Yusuf ibn Umar al-Thaqafi. It was expected by neither commander, and soon Yusuf orders his numerically superior troops to advance all over the abbasids.

    The attack goes like a horde towards the Abbasids, but Abu Muslim remains calm, he orders his infantry to position themselves with the spears towards the enemy troops, creating a total line of defense. And at the same time, it leaves the cavalry and archers in the rear to take care of anything that crosses the line.

    The massive advance of the umayyad actually forces weakness at some points along the line, but the umayyads fail to capitalize on the breaches by Yusuf's military inexperience, who had never faced anything but small rebellions. And the few times that they capitalized, the forces weren't concentrated enough to survive the line of archers and cavalry right behind.

    The umayyad army eventually committed suicide in this attack, and as more soldiers died in the attack, more and more desertions began, until Yusuf realized that almost all of his army had entered the enemy side. Yusuf would not have time to reflect this, he would be killed shortly thereafter, and, along with him, the umayyad domain in Iraq and possibly the war also.
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    Sidelines: The Loss of Miṣr and Khalīfah Yazid ibn Walid

    (The Sidelines are sections less focused of the story, but that i still need to quote to make sense, with everything explained, let's go to them)

    February 3, 744: Uqba marches on al-ʾIskandariyya and spends the next few weeks consolidating his power in Miṣr, he would be very well received by the local population, especially by the copts.

    February 19, 744: Sulayman and Uqba meet in El'Arish on the Sinai mediterranean coast. And they begin the joint campaign in al-Ḥijāz, taking advantage of the umayyad anarchy after the murder of the court, capturing Tabūk in the northwest of the peninsula in early march.

    February 24, 744: Yazid ibn Walid is declared Khalīfah in Makkah, becoming Yazid III. He does not have much hope of reclaiming the lost territories, and accepted the title and role more for the sake of insistence of his brother Ibrahim. Yazid, however, would prove to be the most competent umayyad commander in the war. Ibrahim, however, would go as discreetly as possible to Al-Faransa on a mission to forment an Arab rebellion while Uqba is far away to react.
     
    Prologue: Chapter 20
  • Muslim World

    The Third Fitna Ends: The Battle of Madīnah

    March 11, 744 - Near Madīnah, Modern Al-Mulaylih
    After capturing Tabūk with some tranquility, the army of Sulayman and Uqba march toward the holy city of Madīnah, hearing of the new Caliph in power, both separate their armies, Uqba with 37.000 soldiers and Sulayman with 21.000, most of them the forces previously used by both, Uqba having one with great composition of berbers and Sulayman with its same original strength, which has its cons. Sulayman has been battling with the same forces without much rest since the Battle of Damascus, while Uqba has periodically rotated his troops with new volunteers in Egypt.

    Yazid, however, gathers 18.000 soldiers, and after hours of prayer in Madīnah, departs with his army to meet the enemy. The battle begins as soon as the troops catch sight of each other, with archers exchanging fire, Yazid archers achieving better results by using the small mound behind the sand valley. With the battle formations ready, the battle begins.

    A group of bedouins suddenly arrives in Yazid, and reports the same of a large army arriving on their right. Thinking of it as a trap, he accepts the bedouin's information, but does nothing about it, and sends his army into combat. Knowing Sulayman's track record of aggressivity, Yazid orders his cavalry to engage the enemy along with the infantry, while the archers hold the flanks and rear. Sulayman orders a similar formation, but with the cavalry also at the rear, a move that Yazid considers strangely conservative for the opponent he is facing.

    Sulayman's infantry resist the attack well using square formations, but Yazid soon orders the cavalry units to engage evenly with the infantry, thus causing breaches that break the square formations, and soon the infantry almost collapses from Sulayman. He soon orders his cavalry reserves and archers to join and reinforce the infantry, which delays but not prevent what seems an imminent victory for Yazid. But Sulayman soon changes his worry face to a wide smile.

    Uqba's army arrives on Yazid's right flank, crushing the troops on his arrival, suddenly, morale becomes nonexistent in the Caliph's troops, his officers no longer understand what is happening, as the lines collapsed, the right victory comes to be the worst possible defeat.

    By the end of the day, Yazid would have been captured by the forces of Uqba, and the next day the troops would be entering Madīnah and gloriously heading towards Makkah.

    March 21, 744 - Makkah
    Sulayman's troops triumphantly enter Makkah, capturing the new umayyad court by surprise and taking everyone out of town to face together with Yazid death. Following the capture of Makkah, Uqba and Sulayman would pass along with the Abbasid troops making a process of pacifying the peninsula. And after that, the Third Fitna is finally over.
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    Sidelines

    March 15, 744: The abbasid army under Abu Muslim captures the city of Hajr (Modern Riyadh) after a brief 2-day siege against local umayyad forces. From there, the abbasids would move west to meet the forces of Sulayman and Uqba.

    April 4, 744: The armies of Abu Muslim, Sulayman and Uqba meet in Sana'a, and begin the pacification of southern Arabia.

    April 23, 744: First battle of the Byzantine Civil War, an army sent by Voedos to suppress the revolt in Greece is defeated by Kosmos in Katerini, preventing any chance of a quick conclusion of the conflict. It also guarantees Kosmos the support of all themes west of Thrace.

    April 29, 744: Berber pirates capture Malta and a new era of piracy begins on the Sicilian coast.

    May 6, 744: Abu al-‘Abbās ‘Abdu'llāh as-Saffāḥ is proclaimed Caliph in Kufa, officially beginning the Abbasid Caliphate.
     
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