Wikipedia: "The Khaled ibn al-Walid Mosque (Arabic: مسجد خالد ابن الوليد) is a mosque in Homs, Syria, located in a park along Hama Street in ash-Shuhada Square. It is of recent construction compared to the city's major mosques, built by the Ottomans around 1908. Other sources claim it was originally built by the Mamluk sultan Baibars in the late 13th century and that it was renovated by the Ottomans.
The mosque has been called an "impressive example of Turkish architecture, with its large courtyard and walls decorated in alternating bands of black and white stone." It has two tall white stone minarets that lends lightness to the imposing structure. The slender colonnade in black and white stone in horizontal rows is representative of traditional Islamic architecture in the Levant. The interior of the structure is mostly composed of a large prayer hall and the central dome is supported by four massive columns. In the corner of the interior is the mausoleum of Muslim general Khaled ibn al-Walid who led the Muslim conquest of Syria and after which the mosque is named."
Modern civilization began right here in the Tigris-Euphrates river valley. Also known as the Fertile Crescent or Mesopotamia, this is the place where, six thousand years ago, agriculture, writing and mathematics were brought into widespread use.The term "Middle East" comes from the British navy, which used it to describe the countries on the trade route from Europe to India and China. Everything from Afghanistan to Morocco may possibly be classified as "middle eastern", depending on whom you ask -- and when.Only a partial list of past Empires in the middle eastern territory includes Sumeria, Babylonia, Persia, the Ottoman Empire and the Roman Empire!When northern Europe was still lurking about in slimy cold stone castles playing chess, the Middle East was enjoying the flowers of poetry, luxurious craftsmanship, music and literature. In fact, the Renaissance in Europe was partly inspired by stories brought back from the middle east by travelers along the trade route.Strategic location, religious history and the world's largest supply of crude oil have kept the Middle East at the center of world activity for centuries. The saga continues.Text by Steve Smith.