The "Paleo-Wahabi" Decline of Islamic Spain & The Wrong Idea of Reformism in Islam
Islam was never meant to be spread by the sword, that is why the Prophet Muhammad chose Imam Ali as his successor, he wanted a "Caliphate of Heaven" rather than a temporal one. He wanted an "Empire of Faith" in the One God and not an "Empire of Land" in the name of the One God. After the death of the Prophet, the first 3 Caliphs tried their best to make things right, however because they did not have the right skills necessary in the spiritual sense, they failed and ended up having to have Imam Ali come as the 4th Caliph to deal with the situation. However, by then the situation was out of control and Imam Ali did not have a lot to work with. If the Ahlul Bayt (chosen family) of Prophet Muhammad was allowed to remain in power after Imam Ali, things may have changed for the better, however it just got worse. The Omayyed Fitna spread and took over the Muslim community and ended up killing the prophecied 12 Imams of the Ahlul Bayt. Eventually this situation was taken care of by the Abassid Dynasty who wiped out the Omayyed Dynasty in the name of the family of the Prophet (because of their minimal family relations with them), however they too became like the Omayyeds and again persecuted the Ahlul Bayt and forced the remaining Omayyeds to flee to Spain. The first Omayyeds who established the Al-Moravid Dynasty came into a land that wanted liberation, hence the locals joined the Muslims who were being persecuted by their local overlords, however by the time of the Al-Mohads things had changed and the "Paleo-Wahabi" groups had taken over and oppressed both Muslim and Non-Muslim alike, in the way of the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, Bin Laden, Saddam, Qadafi, and Al-Awlaki, etc. The lesson to learn from all of this history is that the truth is more important than the perception. Meaning that the 'Zahiri' teachings of the "Paleo-Wahabis" and Wahabis teaches a literalist outward approach to Islam, forcing Muslims to look like 7th century Arabs of Arabia. Of course there are extremists on the other side who are "Batinis" or those who are so inward that they forget the foundational teachings of Islam and become just as violent and insane. However, the secret to Islam and the faith of Allah is the middle path of moderation and peace. When a Muslim becomes extremist, he ceases to be a Muslim. Islam is about hearts, minds and souls...not about physical converts and land.
In the following video, "Boabdil" the young Spanish heir to the throne of Granada (the only remaining part of Islamic Spain during the Reconquista - Genocide of Muslims in Spain) is talking to his uncle "El-Zagal" who's approach to dealing with the Christians is much more aggressive than his father. Technically Boabdil was the remnant of the Al-Mohads who took over the Al-Moravids, however over time they became relaxed as well like the group they took over. Ironically, the new "reformist Muslims" came from the side of his uncle. This new reformism, just like the one before, were much more aggressive and did not believe in moderation and peace and considered peaceful relations as a weakness. Reformism in religion is not always a good thing, meaning that some things done in the name of reform (like the so called reformist Wahabis) is actually a deviation from the faith and teachings.