Author Topic: More On BaLoCh and BaLoChistan  (Read 4514 times)

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Offline YaaGii

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More On BaLoCh and BaLoChistan
« on: May 07, 2011, 02:34:27 PM »
Balochistan holds one of the earliest human settlements in the World. It was inhabited by Balochi cave-dwellers and fishermen. Balochistan is one of the ancient inhibited land. The history goes back to around 15,000 years ago. During the last century French archaeologists discovered a new site in Balochistan at Mehergarh (Mehregan), which is believed to be the earliest civilization in the world. It pre-dates the civilizations of Egypt and Mesopotamia. The site was occupied from 7,000 B.C. to 2,000 B.C. and it is the earliest Neolithic site where "we have first evidence of domestication of animals and cereal cultivation - wheat and barely - and also the centre for craftsmanship as early as 7.000 B.C." The history of Balochistan since the settlement of Balochi tribes is a true tale of love and war. The Baloch who are inherently loving and peaceful people, have been forced to fight back for their existence and national identity throughout centuries. They have fought against various rulers and invaders.


Balochistan during Pre-historic era
Archeological and geological findings show that present day land of Balochistan was covered with water. The sea that used to cover Balochistan was known as "Tehthys". Gary Hume of Minnesota University did a great deal of research in Balochistan. The evidence show that cave-dwellers and hunters inhibited Balochistan for thousands of years. Professor Carlton Coon and Huton who had researched the area came to the conclusion that the people around Hamoon sea were engaged in fishery and hunting. These people used to be white skin.

Up to around 12,000 years ago the present day land of Balochistan used to be green, fertile and rich in greenery as well as in various types of animals. The era was known as the "wet" era since the rainfall was plentiful. What type of people inhabited the land is not known. Presence of caves and of carved stone along with other evidence dictates that Balochistan was inhabited by cave dwellers. What is know is that those cave dwellers are not the present day race of Baloch.

The oldest evidence to come out of Balochistan are between 10,000 to 12,000 years old. These evidence have been found both in Eastern Balochistan as well as in western Balochistan. These evidence are examined in the next section.



Balochistan before Christ (BC)
The geological and archeological evidence show that the rainy era finished about 10,000 to 15,000 years ago. Since then the era of dryness and barrenness started. This so-called "dry" era which is still continuous has seen gradual decrease in rainfall associated with the rise in sea level and the degradation of the land. It is no wonder that the Balochi folklore is full of songs which celebrates the earlier years of plentifullness and rain. It seems that almost all generation of the Baloch have experienced this deterioration in their life-time.

Balochistan is one of the ancient inhibited land. The history goes back to around 15,000 years ago. Whether it was initially inhibited by the Balochi tribes or some other tribes is rather unclear. Last century French archaeologists discovered a new site in Balochistan at Mehergarh (Mehregan), which is believed to be the earliest civilization in the world. It pre-dates the civilizations of Egypt and Mesopotamia. The site was occupied from 7,000 B.C. to 2,000 B.C. and it is the earliest Neolithic site where "we have first evidence of domestication of animals and cereal cultivation - wheat and barely - and also the centre or craftsmanship as early as 7.000 B.C."

Lapis Lazuli and sea-shells were used to make beautiful ornaments as found in large number of graves. The site later became a centre of production of beautifully painted pottery and human and animal figurines and such economical and social development helped to understand the process of formation of the urbanized civilization to the west of the Indus Valley in the 3rd millennium B.C. The site of Mehergarh which is situated at the foot of the Bolan Pass also shows good evidence of contacts through trade exchanges with Afghanistan, Central Asia and Persia (Iran). Graves found at the site show that the dead were buried in flex position Children were buried separately and not mixed with the adults. He added Grave pottery was found in all the graves including ornaments of beads of high quality craftsmanship which showed connections with fishermen of Makran Coast.

There are many historical sites across Eastern Balochistan (politically part of Pakistan), Western Balochistan (politically part of Iran), and Northern Balochistan (politically part of Afghanistan). Evidence from these sites show a very clear deep rooted history of civilization.

Amir Tavakol Kambozia wrote that Cupper was first discovered in Balochistan. It was transported from Balochistan to present day Iraq by water-born vessels.

The names Baloch and Balochistan appears in literatures as old as 2000 years ago. However, other names have been used to describe the land of Balochistan. Old Persian literature refers to Balochistan as "Macka" or Mecka as well as Mackiya and Mackiyan. The Greek used to call it "Gedrosia" (pronounced as Gedroshia) or Gedrozia. Others used to call it Makoran or Makaran. Holdich believed that the word Makoran was originally Mahikhoran ( Fish eaters i.e. those whose staple diet was fish). Throughout centuries the word "Mahikhoran" changed into "Makoran". MarcoPolo referred to Balochistan as "Kasmakoran" or Kasmehkoran".

Balochistan during Persian Empires
Most of the literature of this era is written from a Persian view by the Farsi scholars throughout the centuries. It is clear from the literature that successive Persian dynasties tried to subdue the Baloch under their own rule. However, the history seems to be a constant fight by the Baloch against the Persian rule.
Darius (Dariyush) The Great was the first Persian king to invade Balochistan. This was the prelude to conquer India. The war between the Baloch and the Persian continued into the reign of Kaykhosrow. Ferdousi, the Great Persian poet and writer writes about the baloch as such:

*An Army of the Baloch & Kouch (Brahui). * bred and ready like Ewes. * They never turned their back to the battlefield. * They were armed to teeth - not even a a finger uncovered. * Their brave heads could reach the glaring Sun.

Nobody suffered in Balochistan as the Army of Alexander the Great. Alexander's official biographer writes: "I had never seen the Great Alexander so sad and dejected - filled with sorrow and uncertainty. When Leon Natos, the great commander of the Alexander's ary entered Balochistan, they faced fearless Balochi fighters ready to fight. They knew fighting against the Baloch was risky. Nonetheless they entered into fight against the Baloch. The outcome was disastrous for Alexander's army and against himself. They run and gathered their forces in Pahrah area ( Todays Iranshahar).

Neark(Neyarkhos), the Navy commander of Alexander, writes " The Baloch were armed with long arrows and Javeline like wooden cross. By the force of fire they had made the wood much stronger than Iron. It was these weapons which defeated Macedonians."

During Sasanian era, King Ardeshir invaded Kerman and annexed it to its kingdom. He tried to do the same with Balochistan but was defeated by the Baloch. The Baloch also, from time to time, made excursions to Kerman. After the death of Ardeshir, his son, Shapoot I succeeded him. During the reign of Anosheervan, the tension between the Baloch and the Persian increased once again. Anosheervan who used to call himself Aadel (Just), planned to invade Balochistan. He gathered a very large army equipped and ready to fight. One of the greatest battle of all time took place between Anosheervan's unjust Army and the Baloch. What was the extent of the victory for either side, nobody knows.

Omar, the second khalifat of Islam, who conquered Iran, sent two of his commanders to conquer Balochistan. Initially, the primary Arab armies were defeated. Once the Arab commanders learnt about the Balochistan and Beloshi people as they call it, they told their rulers that going into Balochistan is not wise for " there is scarce water, the deate palm trees are dried and dead, bandits are very brave and fearless. If you send a small Army, it will be defeated, if you send a large Army, they will die of thirst and hunger". During the first 100 years of Islam, the Baloch refused to accept Islam. However, throughout centuries they accepted Islam as the main religion.

The next largest invasion of Balochistan was carried out by Joghtayeh Mogul ( son of Gangiz Khan). He defeated Sultan Jalal-odin and looted Balochistan with little mercy.

Immediately after his crowning, Nader Shah Afshar dispatched more than 12,000 armed soldiers to conquer Balochistan. Initially they fought against 3000 armed men of Amir Mohabat Khan and Amir Imtiaz Khan ( sons of Abdullah Baloch). This battle took place around Minaab and Jask which are part of Balochistan. Nadershah sent more troops towards the Kalat (Capital of the State of Balochistan). Another war broke out between the Baloch and the Persian. However, the real winner this time was King Ahmad Durani of Afghanistan.

The Ghajaar dynasty was toppled by the Reza Shah Pahlavi. Reza initially followed the path of his predecessors by suppressing the Baloch. Once again wars followed. Hundreds of thousands of the Baloch escaped from Balochistan. Most of them settled in Karachi and Sind. Reza Shah's war against the Baloch started from different fronts. He brought tens of thousands of troops from the north (Mashahad), north west (Kerman), Yazd, and from the west (Bander Abbass).

Balochi Sardars such as Doust Mohamed Khan Baragzahei started fighting against the fully equipped army of Iran which had been modernized by their masters i.e. the British. Eventually, the British helped Reza Shah to suppress the Baloch at all cost. The Baloch were the only nation in the region to have defeated the British. Hence, the British had a particular disliking towards the Baloch. Thousands of the Baloch and scores of tribal chiefs were executed in the aftermath of the war.


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