New evidence shows a disaster similar to the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami battered the same region centuries ago and may have given rise to a powerful Islamic kingdom.

ON DEC. 26, 2004, roiling tides as high as 100 feet rushed onto the shores of Aceh, the Indonesian province on the northwest tip of Sumatra.

An undersea earthquake had struck just off the coast and triggered a destructive tsunami, which hit shorelines all along the Indian Ocean as far away as Somalia. More than 160,000 people were killed in Aceh alone, and even more were displaced.

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