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Old 18th October 2017, 04:45 PM   #12
Ibrahiim al Balooshi
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Location: Buraimi Oman, on the border with the UAE
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Returning to the Western Indian Ocean the focus is again on BALUCH mercenaries where I Quote

"Mercenary Groups and Power Politics in
the Western Indian Ocean

Another important item destined to change deeply the hinterland power
balances was represented by firearms: during the first half of the XIXth
Century matchlocks began to appear in the hands of Omani mercenary
troops, who, imported them from the Ottoman Empire and from Europe.
The Shirazi, the Swahili important families, gradually ‘lost’ their power
and were pulled apart by the Al Bu Sahid within the growing trade of
Zanzibar, although they retained control of the northern caravan trade
but the great wealth soon passed into ‘Arabs’ and ‘Indian’ hands. As
the central route was the most controlled by Arabs, Tabora, near the
heart of Unyamwezi, as we have seen above, became an ‘Arab’ town
together with Ujiji. Here Baluch soldiers settled, intermarried, and soon
became influencing figures. The impact of the Al Bu Sahid political power
and of the Baluch military power in Zanzibar on the African hinterland
was therefore destined to influencing the lives of East African men and
women; considerable modifications underwent in traditional elite patterns
of power relationships where client-patronage perspectives never were to
be the same, and where new actors were destined to emerging on the
new western Indian Ocean scenario in its connections with the East
African hinterland. In this regard, the ivory trade became a means of
travel, adventure and wealth offering a way to modifying the status within
the coastal communities. Everybody could share this ambition, but at
the same time new tensions were introduced between Swahili rich families,
struggling to preserve their precarious domination, and the demand
of the ‘parvenus’ on whose support they relied."Unquote.
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