In the 14th century, the 3 richest places in the world were China, the Middle east (Iran, Irak) and Africa (Mali Empire with Mansa Musa).
When the Mongols arrived in Europe in the 14th century, they were very disappointed. The place was so poor. There were nothing worthy looting, so as usual they killed all the local aristocracies, and return back home.
Killing the local aristocracies in Asia and Europe in the 14th centuries was the single most important gift the Mongols have brought to Europe and to the modern world.
Where ever you found a local or global aristocracy, without exception, all aristocracies are always against innovation, which slowly weaken the social fabric, divide the people and make their country vulnerable to enemies or competitors.
The killing, exile, or destruction of local aristocracies and dynasties usually preludes the emergence of a new order, by lifting the artificial barriers and social impediments to people desire to innovate, achieve and compete.
The Mongols were ruthless conquerors who were mainly looking for wealthy cities to loot. They never bothered to cover their deeds with any ideological or humanitarian agenda. With only 100,000 men on horses, the Mongols conquered more than 52 countries, and ruled over more than 3 billions people in the 13th and 14th centuries. From Japan and Korea to Central Europe, They’ve created the largest empire ever in the history of humanity.
When Mongols arrived in Europe after conquering China and the Middle East, they found a continent which was very poor, plunged into the Dark Age, ravaged by famine, with most its nations fighting and killing one another people for religious and ethnic reasons.
The Mongols found nothing worthy looting, so when they heard about the death their Great Khan Ogodai, they seize the opportunity to return home, never coming back. Western Europe suffered the least from Mongols conquests, and was therefore the only place left without the Mongols devastations in Eurasia.
Soon after the Mongols invasion, the Europeans sent ambassadors and merchants to the Mongol Capital Karakurum seeking to understand the Mongols and make peace with them. The Mongols permitted European merchants, craftsmen, and envoys to journey as far as China for the first time. Soon, items and inventions such as mechanical printing, gunpowder, and the blast furnace made their way from China to the West. Artistic ideas, knowledge of history, geography, and sciences such as astronomy, agricultural knowledge and medicinal ideas also traveled from the East to the west.
The influx of knowledge from the East, and specially the arrival of mechanical printing from China helped the reproduction and spread of original ancient Greek texts (Euclid, Plato, Cicero, etc.) which leads to the European Renaissance, which in turn leads to the Enlightenment, the scientific revolution and ultimately leads to the industrial revolution.
The Mongols sponsored the trips of Marco Polo who brought spaghetti back to Italy from China.
“Yet that Italian adventurer, Marco Polo, impacted trade in other ways. The publication of his travels fired the imagination of many Europeans. Yet as the Mongol Empire and its successors continued to disintegrate, the Pax Mongolica—which was never completely peaceful—collapsed. This led to the trade routes becoming insecure once more. In turn, this led to an increase of prices due to tariffs and the cost of protection. The rise of the Ottoman Empire also impacted Italian merchants conducting business in the Black Sea and Eastern Mediterranean. With these restrictions, western desire for the luxury goods and spices of the east grew, encouraging an Age of Exploration. Beginning with Christopher Columbus, westerners began searching for new routes to China and India, particularly to the court of the Khan, even though a Mongol Khan had not sat on the throne since 1368. Thus, the Mongols indirectly led to European exploration and the intrusion of Europeans into Asia.” – Timothy May
It goes without any doubt that the Mongol invasions indirectly led to Europe’s “Age of Exploration” in the 15th century. And these European explorations leads to european supremacy in the world today, precisely because the Mongols introduced two deadly Chinese inventions to the West: guns and gunpowder which the West will use to conquer the rest of world.
As a matter of numbers, before the “discovery” of America by Columbus, and the transatlantic slavery of Black people, Europe was like any other place in the world in term of wealth. However, after 3 centuries of Black people slavery and exploitation of the American continent, Western Europe became 3 times richer than any other region in the world, and after 2 centuries of colonialism around the world, western Europe became 30 times wealthier than any other region of the world at the beginning of the 20th century.
The compounding result is that nowadays western Europeans and their descendants owns close to 90% of the world wealth, while they make less than 15% of world population.
The Mongols ended several previous dynasties and led to the creation of new power centers. Tough they Mongols would never benefit from the new world order they have helped create, the Mongols should be viewed as the catalyst which shifted the world from the pre-modern era to the modern era.
Without killing, retiring, exiling or destructing local aristocracies and dynasties it’s almost impossible for any nation to come to a new order, if that is needed.
- – China civil war which ended in 1949 exiled the old Chinese dynasties and lifted more than 800 millions out of poverty in less than 50 years.
- – Only after killing the old nobles and Kings of France, that France was able to to catch up with european industrial revolution.
- – America became a powerful and Industrial Nations only when a horde of self-made folks took on the British through the American Revolution.
- – Russia became an industrial nation only after Japanese defeated Russian forces in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904. That military defeat unleashed all of the dissenting forces in Russia, leading to the February Revolution in March 1917.
- – The Meiji Restoration leads to Modern Japan.
Africa renaissance will not be possible without dealing with the current local aristocracies and dynasties. The how is left to the intelligence of we the African people, using our ancestral knowledge to avoid more violence and wars.