The Crusades

The CrusadesFor thousands of years the holy lands of the Middle East have run with blood. Here the scars of battle fought between three of the great religions of the world are etched into the earth.

But the deepest wound was made by a war between Christians and Muslims, that began in the 11th century and fought for 200 years. At stake: A tiny strip of land just a few hundred miles long, but with the greatest prize, Jeruzalem. Now this holy war's past is a legend, but there were those who saw it with their own eyes.

Great chronicles from two different worlds, Christian and Muslim, who wrote of great deeds, great battles, great warriors and men who would lay down their lives for their god. This was the collision of two great faiths, the clash between the crescent and the cross. This is a documentary about the crusades.

Watch the full documentary now (playlist - 3 hours, 16 minutes)

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Ratings: 6.00/10 from 10 users.
  • Solomon S. Buyco

    An eye for an eye... is as is, as usual, every eye will need others eye to see on what is in it on their own eye as on what ever occasion that it will cause or reason the need to clean them. :)

  • mj

    i read the books concerning the crusade.
    this documentary is biased toward the christian...

  • http://www.essenceofdesignus.com Jroseland

    My take away from this documentary is that the Christians started this age old conflict with the first crusade. Modern day Arabs & Muslims see Western Imperialism & war on Arab nations as modern crusades

  • Aaron Singleton

    Just wanted to say: Thank you, Vlatko, for this awesome site. I come here at least twice a week to watch. Keep up the good work.

  • jila

    Fighting for the god of sand cults just proves the sand cult god doesn't exist.

  • Chris

    Crypto Jews started the crusades through their Masonic orders in order to prevent sacred kabbalist books falling into the hands of the Muslims. Once again blaming Christians for the actions of the false jews.

  • Murad

    You made a very unlearned statement regarding the so called Kabbalist books.
    There is nothing sacred about the Black magic book known as the Kabbalah.
    The only sacred book of that time was the Torah.
    Torah and other supplement books were destroyed along with Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, and he took all the Hebrews captive back to Babylon.
    God Almighty had warned the Hebrews time and time again of their rebelliousness, thus their captivation by Babylonians. God after all gave them one more chance to test them, and sent two angels in guise of men with the knowledge of Black Magic. When the some of the Hebrews found out about these two men having some extra ordinary powers, they pleaded to teach them. The angels declined, but the Hebrews were persistent. The Angels warned them if they learn the Black Magic they will be out cast from God's Mercy. The Angels left after teaching them Black Magic and also gave them warning and that they are responsible of their acts. The other Hebrews invented Talmud at the absence of Torah. At later date when King Salomon (pbuh) found out about these books, he had it confiscated and sat on it during his life time. After his death it was either taken by the Pharisee or the Jinns (Spirit beings invisible to human eye) or by his son through Queen Sheba and taken to Ethiopia. The Ethiopian claims they have the Ark of the Covenant (they lie, and say its the Torah) but they will not show it as a proof, but says you have to believe it. 70 A D Roman sacked Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple and its content. But some say the Rabbi hid the Kabbalah in the caves or tunnels under Jerusalem. The Templars heard the story about the Kabbalah and they wanted to own this power. They hoodwinked the Roman Catholic Church into assisting them in capturing Jerusalem to liberate mistreated Christians from Muslims. They Lied (sounds familiar? lying stories of 9/11 and w m d?) about Muslims persecuting Christians. They sacked Muslim Jerusalem and killed all its inhabitant including Christians in search of these evil books. When the Church found out the Templars Fraud it ordered all Templars killed. Some of them escaped to Ireland and helped Irish against the English. The Irish and Templars defeated the English, and as a token of appreciation the Irish handed over the throne of England to Templars. Templars changed their name to Free Masons, since the name had become infamous. The Free Mason took revenge from the Europeans and succeeded. Now all of Europe is run by Free Mason under assumed different names. The USA is also taken over by same people with different names. All these Free Masons worship Satan and are against any form of organized Religion. They say they have the Kabbalah, which gives them power. But I doubt their claims. If they are using the Kabbalah to take over the world, they would be easily defeated by Muslims, because they have the Anti-dote for Black Magic.
    At the time of these events taking place in Jerusalem, there were no such thing as Crypto Jews. They were still Pagan Khazars, from Khazaria. They adapted Judaism later dates, under pressure from Christians from North and Muslims from South. So your assertion "in order to prevent sacred kabbalist books falling into the hands of the Muslims" is absolutely incorrect. Every Muslim who knows Qur'an, knows how to neutralize the effect of Black Magic or the Kabbalah.
    And if a Muslim want to practice Black Magic, he/she knows how to get it. But there is one problem. Any body that practice Black Magic is bound for Hell Fire. This is the reason the Muslim will not practice Black Magic. There is a verse in Qur'an "The Throne" it is the Anti-dote for Black Magic and also to get rid of Satan or his helpers (demons).

  • Dickey B.

    Wait, wait.... no one commented on the great narrator? For shame!

  • AB

    good stuff and thanks for it

    Life is too short to wage endless war
    and too valuable to be experienced in oppression or captivity. So dont waste it and try to understand it mr. president.

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hagar_%28Bible%29 hohoho

    im still confuse how they build dome of the rock without must conquered it ?

  • drool

    the holy war of jerusalem is still being fought now by the israelis and palestininans!

  • jai bajrang

    everyone shut up...ya, murad, go on dude. everyone loves fairy tales.

  • Philosophocles

    @Murad and Jai Bajrang
    It is far more interesting to believe fairy tales, than to analyze them and come up with a logical answer for yourself. As for black magic, kabbalah, jews, crusades, hitler and whatever else, the true and only goal has always been POWER/MONEY. So it's not about the fancy names (Free Mason/templar/Tri'lateral/Bildeberg) It's about the aim. Who cares what they are named?! What is their intention? Why do they do what they do? To worship Satan? I'd hope they'd have better things to do. Like feel the rush of instigating a whole war, and having every nation in the planet under their thumbs. Or controlling every single penny of money in the entire world. That sounds more plausible than holy grails and black magic.

    But Sci Fi and Fairy Tales are entertaining. If you like being misinformed. Of course that is your freedom of choice.

    The easiest way to decipher misinformation ... simply ask yourself, who gained? And why?
    A wise man once said, "Its not the appearances that matter, but whats behind them."

  • Philosophocles

    @ James
    Good Points. I too agree. no one will truly know what drives the people that rule the world. It could range from money to power to something entirely different (hate, fear, religion). No one will ever really know.

    And I also agree with your point "It would be nice to say that our goals should be to remodel ourselves to redirect our will to make some effort to seek positive change for all" When did any one person change the world? I believe it was only ever one person at a time. Ex. Buddha, Alexander the Great, Constantine, Jesus, Ghandi, Martin Luther King Jr. etc etc. Although small worlds, they have only ever been changed by a single person. So what's the way out of this huge mess we (as a species) have allowed to happen? To cultivate our own intellect, so we can learn to harness and live in harmony with the Earth and all other people/animals, instead of exploiting them to further our selfish needs.

    But if we are all blinded by conspiracy on top of conspiracy and movie stars and ignorant (and much much too loud) music, we will never make it. I am grateful for great thinkers like you James. If it were not for minds such as ours (and others, although very few) I fear there would be no hope at all. But all it takes is one person and I can see that glimmer of hope.

  • Leo

    The Same thing is happening in present day and in the 21st century. The muslims and the arabs have a goal and that is to destroy israel and the Western civilization. They are motivated and diciplined. As it was back on those days of the crusades the muslims was not united as its the same today. But still they know what they want and that is **Jihad**.

    The West does not have the same motivation to fight or even care what is happening. They have become weak and are watching how their countries are being taken by immigrants and how muslim countries contribute to terrorism and how oil is funding terror which we are paying for.

    Western society will fall if it dosent change the direction and start to open it eyes.

  • Riley

    the israelis are probably wondering if they are the new saladins or the new crusaders.

    my vote would be the new crusaders they have power, technology in their favor, the current of history & deomgraphics against them.

    there was a patronizingly romantic tone to the arab tales more-or-less completely absent from the crusader tales.

    sort of like how indians are patted on the head these days by the conquering culture.

  • jack1952

    Although almost forgotten by the average westerner (ask anyone in Canada), the crusades still have a very strong meaning in the Muslim world. Most people I know (Canada) really have no understanding why we are so hated in the Middle East and that Muslims see everything we do as an attack on them. This is because they see everything through a religious microscope. In the west that religious aspect has given way to a more secular view; an aspect which is probably difficult for the average Muslim to understand or believe. This misunderstanding and mistrust are walls that seem impossible to scale. Let's hope that it can be done soon.

    Crypto Jews, Chris? You can't blame everything on the Jews. Nobody is that smart. You remind of an episode of Seinfeld where George says on the phone "you know who invented astro turf don't you... the Jews". Its funny but somewhat true. I'm sure the Popes in those days didn't need to be told by another religion to go and fight those brutal wars. The Catholic Church of the day had their own issues with what they call the Jewish murder of Christ.

  • J Swiss

    This documentary is very subjective and skewed. It's convenient how she omits the details of the Muslim violence during the conquest of these areas while focusing on the atrocities committed by Christians. In addition, from a secular point of view I find this documentary to contain a hidden purpose of religious propaganda skewed towards favoring Islam.

  • hashim

    i like this documentary.but u not mentioned about the king philip of france

  • Todd

    Very enjoyable.

    Kingdom of Heaven (Ridley Scott) did a good dramatization of the fall of Jerusalem. Worthy of a watch and comparison to the facts presented in this (excellent) production.

    Thank you, V.

  • odogg51

    this is an excellent documentary. really quite neutral and very informative, the reality is every stories is told form someones perspective. focus on the information and it's all there.

  • oldsoul222

    We are terrorsites.Our existance is based on our ability to inflict terror on our own kind.We live to destroy.We destroy our own heavens,both earthly and unearthly.Justified with relgion or science.Someone always needs to be stronger and better at somebodys exspence.God help us all.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_JKEUS45ROZ2RK4UK5KWYF2Q5EU Chris

    A simple task for whichever country you live in.

    Is your political opposition leader Jewish?
    Is the head of "your" central bank Jewish?
    Are the largest corporation in your country Jewish controlled?

    The fact that your ignorant does not make me wrong.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_JKEUS45ROZ2RK4UK5KWYF2Q5EU Chris

    A simple task for whichever country you live in Jack.

    Are your political leaders and opposition Jewish?
    If not are they surrounded by Jews?
    Is the head of "your" central bank Jewish?
    Are the largest corporation in your country Jewish controlled?
    All this from 2% of the population.

    And as for the Church of Rome, which is not the Catholic Church, it is under the control of the Jesuits whose founding members were marranos.

    Looking for solutions in seinfeld. So sad..
    The fact that your ignorant does not make me wrong.
    "My people suffer for lack of knowledge".

  • a_no_n

    OK Leo.
    First of all, the muslims you speak of represent a minority of the global muslim population! The vast majority don't feel that way at all, they just want to raise their kids and live their lives like anyone else. they think it sucks that Israel is trying to push Palestine into the sea, but they also think it sucks because the muslim leaders are all corrupt and doing nothing for the people who are suffering. (a far cry from the muslim unity you fantasize about)

    You seem to have completely forgotten that the west has been fighting two wars for the last decade, and you don't make any coherent reasoning for mentioning immigrants either.
    I can only presume you use it like a swear word, (ignoring the fact that if you're American or British then you're an immigrant!)

    If you want to talk about funding terrorists perhaps you should talk to those US presidents that equipped and trained the Taliban.

    It's a good effort at a rant, but the grasp on fact or reality is pathetic (and that's putting it nicely).
    Put your tin foil hat on and go back into your padded room you loon.

    Otherwise this documentary is really good, i like the dramatization, and have added it to my list of referencing aids, thanks for putting it up!
    Much better than the templar documentry on this site which is clearly aimed at the Dan Brown hordes and as a result pretty useless.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Seema-Anjum/100002283388265 Seema Anjum

    In my view crusades are nothing but the barbaric act done by westeners...
    How could u justify the act like for one city u just want to torn about the land from europe to arabia and which doesn't even belongs to you...? Insane people's...

  • far far

    We must unite and take our countries back first.

    Then we must make sure we can defend any attack.

    Then JERUSALEM will come back.

  • WTC7

    Well, you certainly haven't scored any points with me here... Save your religious fanaticism for your mosque. Had you expressed a simple human frustration with the occupation of your home land I would absolutely support it and most of us do support a truly fair resolution of the Palestinian question, but this is repulsive, disgusting.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KPAM3OFZ7IV4E3UU2DVDRSAZJ4 Christian

    This documentary is incorrect. The Christians from my understanding were sent out on a defensive war by Pope Urban 2 to protect the Christians to the East. Islam was not spread by peace from words, It was in fact forced upon by the invading Islam forces concurring Christian lands.

  • KARTKING

    ....as opposed to the barbaric act committed by the muslims??

    Here are some quick facts…

    The first Crusade began in 1095… 460 years after the first Christian city was overrun by Muslim armies, 457 years after Jerusalem was conquered by Muslim armies, 453 years after Egypt was taken by Muslim armies, 443 after Muslims first plundered Italy, 427 years after Muslim armies first laid siege to the Christian capital of Constantinople, 380 years after Spain was conquered by Muslim armies, 363 years after France was first attacked by Muslim armies, 249 years after the capital of the Christian world, Rome itself, was sacked by a Muslim army, and only after centuries of church burnings, killings, enslavement and forced conversions of Christians.

    By the time the Crusades finally began, Muslim armies had conquered two-thirds of the Christian world.

    Europe had been harassed by Muslims since the first few years following Muhammad’s death. As early as 652, Muhammad’s followers launched raids on the island of Sicily, waging a full-scale occupation 200 years later that lasted almost a century and was punctuated by massacres, such as that at the town of Castrogiovanni, in which 8,000 Christians were put to death. In 1084, ten years before the first crusade, Muslims staged another devastating Sicilian raid, burning churches in Reggio, enslaving monks and raping an abbey of nuns before carrying them into captivity

    In response to Muslim expansion or aggression, there were only about 20 years of actual military campaigning, much of which was spent on organization and travel. (They were from 1098-1099, 1146-1148, 1188-1192, 1201-1204, 1218-1221, 1228-1229, and 1248-1250). By comparison, the Muslim Jihad against the island of Sicily alone lasted 75 grinding years.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000333834288 Robin Propst

    thats bullshit, Urban sent them to protect pilgrims and to defend the bysantien empire, and in order to do that they had to masacre alot of muslims, about 20.000 peopel died when the cristians atackt Jerusalem

  • clay dawson

    This should only be read to the first instance of adopting a viewpoint of "God almighty's" purposes and commands, lest the reader be subjected to a GIANT paragraph of nonsense; your perspective has effectively been polluted by nonsense.

    lol i like the last sentence--"... and also to get rid of Satan or his helpers (demons)"...as if you need to parenthetically clarify that Satans helpers are demons in the interest of objective fact. Amusing

  • clay dawson

    Crusades complemented centuries of repressed texts praising reason over revelation (knowledge) in the interest of spreading a religion, which, otherwise would not have flourished. Islam is no different save the fact that its progression was less threatened by scientific inquiry. That said, both are a detriment to human progression. Thank you.

  • clay dawson

    I conflated the inquisitions in that last comment.

  • clay dawson

    Your understanding is incorrect. In addition to the defensive misconception, Islam was historically more peaceful. The territory, when held by Muslims was far more tolerant, and Muslims are far more accepting of other religions. However, like many religions, Islam is rendered primitive for the reasons it is cut off from other religions.
    For instance, the belief that Mohammad was the latest and true prophet makes followers forever associate a truly ancient and universal idea with one man.

    This is why, to my understanding, the so called "word of God" takes many forms and therefore has many "prophets." Any God that does exist is an unknown function of the natural cosmos; inspiration from which inclines us to live the best way that we can. Most accounts render an idea of a man because, of course, that is what we are so we devised an idea of a man of infinite capabilities as the ultimate expression of our own as well as something to aspire to.

    Anyways in the case of Abrahamic religions, all are fundamentally detrimental because they impose artificial distinctions between ppl resulting in one viewing all others as somewhat mislead, or deprived of some truth. When people believe so much in the superiority of their religion, they go to extreme ends for its sake and often the result is death. It remains the same today and it is precisely because of the inherent isolation of one artificial group from the larger natural group (humanity) for frivolous reasons.

    That said, rather than entertain senseless debates about the particulars of one or the other, I propose that we recognize the fundamental flaws of all.

  • 0zyxcba1

    Just think how wonderful life might be without religion.

  • Vamp_Man

    What I find difficult to understand is when the crusaders killed anyone - it was a massacre. When ever the muslims killed anyone - it was necessary then no more was spoken of it. A bit like today, don't you think?

    As someone previously said: just think how wonderful life might be without religion - and the maniacs who use it to commit mass murder.

  • avd420

    They stone women. That's necessary how?

  • Vamp_Man

    It isn't necessary - nor any of the other barbaric practices. What sort of parents teach their children to be suicide bombers? Not exactly great career prospects. And then they have the cheek to proclaim they are peaceful.

  • sadehersi

    the only way your going to learn about islam is to read the koran

  • dblock89

    im afraid you have the the complete wrong impression on religion. i suggest you look into yourself and find god within you. its not religion you hate. hate the ignorance of the worlds general population and the oppressors or government that pray on that using religion as a means for personal gain. blame the preachers who weren't called by god preaching false doctrines in both the christian and muslim world. I'm not standing up for muslims by any means. But is it possible that they are just the most poisoned by false doctrines ,centuries in the making. And if so are they still not our brother? Wouldn't the most sick deserve the most care?

  • Theo79

    to protect the Byzantine Empire?! They sacked it what protection was that?!

  • http://www.facebook.com/robert.blizniuk Robert Bli?niuk

    Religion organized humans. It isn´t per todays knowledge the most optimal way of organizing us (probably). Still we have religion to thank for modern society. It is only now we can say that we "dont need" religion. Most of our values and way of acting in a civilized way, as well as institutions and processes in society are created according to religious values and rules.
    ALot of people have died and are dying in the name of religion, but a world without religion is unthinkable, man kind would probably wipe.

  • MohammedSafwan

    Absolutely True! You see Muslims were like this Evolved species without any brain & feeling. They were the War Machines, Rape Machines, Conversion Machines and all sort of horrible Machines!

    Whereas the rest of the world were holy cows!

    But, what I simply do not understand is - how did these brainless, barbarous Machines manage to get the ability to just make such splendorous monument in Europe in-spite of oppressing Europeans! What happen to European at that point of time when they were doing all this! Were they Sleeping? Were they Castrated?

    400 years of European occupation, and still today European remain Christians? What kind of Oppressive Religious Converters were they? Did not they know any such concept as Ethnic Cleansing?

    How did they ever manage to think of doing or supporting some literary work? When they could manage to get whatever they wanted through Wars? I must say: They were Stupid?

    The Most Surprising Part is some people consider their literary work as Ground Breaking! WoW these some people must surely be smoking something..Right?

    After all such oppression, it is really sad that the Europe was in the "Dark Ages", But What happen to Europe when the Dark Ages were over they took so much of time to accept these new scientific discoveries and were involved in this battle between Church and Society...What went wrong with the society? What Caused them to revolt against the Peace Loving Churches?

    I think all these things clearly justify what these Muslims are suffering both physical & Psychological. They Absolutely Deserve this no? Especially when they oppress those White, Angel like people?

    Thank You! You are So Knowledge full !!!

  • Leofwin

    Muslim Conquest of Christian Syria, 634-638 AD.
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Jerusalem, 637 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Egypt, 639 - 642 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Armenia, 639 - 645 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Georgia, 645 - 736 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian North Africa, 647 - 709 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Cyprus, 650 - 688 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Sicilly and Malta, 652 - 902 AD
    First Muslim Siege of Christian Constantinople, 674 - 678 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Spain, 711 - 718 AD
    Second Muslim Siege of Christian Constantinople, 717 - 718 AD
    (Attempted) Muslim Conquest of Christian France, 719 - 759 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Crete, 824 - 827 AD
    Muslim Conquest of Christian Anatolia, 1048 - 1308 AD

    The Crusades, 1095 - 1291 AD.

    I think it's safe to say that the Muslims had it coming. They were attacking Christians for 400 years before Christians finally decided they had to fight back.

  • Xbow

    Indeed!
    One could rightly say that the Muslims had it coming centuries later when the Voivodes of Eastern Europe resisted the Ottoman Empire so vigorously. Then as now Islam's primary method of expansion was conquest and conversion by force under the threat of death.

    I believe the actions of hombres like Vlad ?epe?, John Hunyadi and Stephen III of Moldavia were completely justified when you consider the nature of the enemy. And I think it is important to remember that Vlad Learned of Impalement in his youth while enjoying the comforts of the Sultans Dungeons in Edirne. Mehmed II was really fond of Impalement as punishment for resisting his will.

    Then there is another fact our Muslim loving friends choose to forget. At the time of the crusades the moors were occupying Spain and as you said planning to go for central Europe.

  • manny13

    Have to correct you, the Muslims were in Spain from 711 till 1492 when Granada the last hold of the Muslims fell to the Christians.

  • manny13

    Actually the Muslims were in Spain from 711 as you mention, till 1492 when Granada the last foothold of the Muslims was taken.

  • manny13

    Actually the Muslims were in Spain from 711 till 1492 when the last foothold of the Muslims in Granada was taken.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YV74T4KDYPZUUCGJZ6LPCBATTM Bruce

    leofwin...you have. consciously or unconsciously, minimized the Christian Crusadic affair by wiping out about another 200 years of religiously inspired adventures to the east..i suggest you return to the drawing board...Christians have been exporting war and death for more than a thousand years ..save the righteous proclamations of self defense before I fall down laughing,.

    The crusades were an affront to humanity and to Christian doctrine..they were about the control of the Western Church and the manipulation and destabilization of the Eastern Church ...it was a politically motivated and calculated event born in the brain of one of the most corrupt and ruthless Popes in the history of Western Christendom.

    If Rome had been even half serious about redressing the power balance between the Turk and the Eastern Church it wouldn't have left military action as an option adopted 20 years following Manzikert.

    Clearly you need to wipe your mind clear of prejudice before returning to the study of the Crusades.

    As a post script I would remind you of the commandment "Thou shalt not kill" before you again appeal to a righteous justification for mass murder under a Papal flag!

  • Leofwin

    The dates I gave were for the conquest, and the Muslims had conquered Spain by 718. I know that they held it until 1492, but that's occupation, not conquest.

  • Leofwin

    Yes, the Muslims were in Spain until 1492, but they had conquered it by 718.

  • Leofwin

    "leofwin...you have. consciously or unconsciously, minimized the Christian Crusadic affair by wiping out about another 200 years of religiously inspired adventures to the east..i suggest you return to the drawing board...Christians have been exporting war and death for more than a thousand years ..save the righteous proclamations of self defense before I fall down laughing,. "

    Bruce, you consciously or unconsciously minimised the Muslim Jihadic affair by wiping out about another 400 years of religiously inspired adverntures to the West. Muslims have been exporting war and death for more than a thousand years.

    What exactly are you talking about? Everything that I said is historically true. Muslims attacked Christians first, that's historical fact. Muslims exploded out of Arabia in the 7th century and conquered huge swathes of Christian land, such as Syria, Jerusalem, Egypt, North Africa, Spain, Crete, Cyprus, Malta, Sicilly, France, Armenia, Anatolia . . . so what exactly did I say that was incorrect?

    "The crusades were an affront to humanity and to Christian doctrine..they were about the control of the Western Church and the manipulation and destabilization of the Eastern Church ...it was a politically motivated and calculated event born in the brain of one of the most corrupt and ruthless Popes in the history of Western Christendom. "

    I don't care if they were an affront to Christian doctrine. Christian doctrine isn't some sort of objective standard of behavior. I'm not a Christian, so these sorts of arguments are irrelevant to me. As for being an affront to humanity, the 400 years of brutal Muslim conquests that provoked the Crusades were an affront to humanity. Do you agree? Or do you have a double standard when it comes to Muslim violence and Christian violence?

    The Byzantine Emperor called for help from Western Christians because he didn't have enough troops to defend his territory - Christian Anatolia (modern-day Turkey) - against the invading Muslim Turks. The Muslims had begun invading Anatolia in 1048 - that's 50 years before the First Crusade was called. So the Muslim started it. And it's a matter of historical record that the Crusades were a response to this. The Crusades were a military expedition to defend Christian Anatolia against invading Muslims, protect Christian pilgrims who were being robbed and killed by Muslims, and liberate Jerusalem from Muslim occupation. Jerusalem was a Christian city until Muslims invaded it in 637 AD. Whether Pope Urban was "currupt and ruthless" is entirely beside the point, that's an Ad Hominem logical fallacy.

    "If Rome had been even half serious about redressing the power balance between the Turk and the Eastern Church it wouldn't have left military action as an option adopted 20 years following Manzikert."

    The Battle of Manzikert was a battle fought in Byzantine Armenia in 1071 AD, where the Byzantine Army was defeated by the invading Muslim Turks. This meant that Muslim Turks started settling in Christian territory. This is exactly what I was talking about, it was battles like this - where the Muslims were the aggressors, that provoked the Christians to fight back in the Crusades. I don't really follow your point. The Byzantine Emperor didn't ask Rome for help until 1095, and so that's when they came. What point are you trying to make here?

    "Clearly you need to wipe your mind clear of prejudice before returning to the study of the Crusades. "

    You have demonstrated a great deal of prejudice towards Christians and in particular prejudice towards Pope Urban II. So wipe your mind of your anti-Christian prejudice before you return to the study of the Crusades.

    "As a post script I would remind you of the commandment "Thou shalt not kill" before you again appeal to a righteous justification for mass murder under a Papal flag! "

    I didn't make any appeals to righteous justification or Christian scripture in my post. Did you even bother to read it? All I said was that because the Muslims had been attacking Christians for 400 years BEFORE the Crusades, they had it coming. That's just cause and effect. I'm not appealing to any scriptural authority. , I'm just saying that the historial record demonstrates that Muslims were the ones who started the conflict.

  • Leofwin

    Yes they were, but they secured control in 718. I was just giving dates for the actual conquest. For example, the Muslims occupied India until 1858.

  • Leofwin

    How did Muslims justify conquering land which didn't belong to them?
    Almost all so-called "Muslim land" was originally Christian land before Muslim armies invaded and conquered it.

    The exceptions are Persia (Zoroastrian), India (Hindu), Afghanistan (Buddhist), and Arabia itself (Traditional Arabic Polytheism).

  • MohammedSafwan

    @Leofwin,

    400 years of Muslim occupation by force? Well for the sake of argument even if we buy what you say we need to still account for the following aspects before the crusades took place:

    When the muslims started conquering Persia & Roman Empire(Mind you these 2 empires were the super powers at that point of time) what were they doing? Sleeping! A Sleeping Super Powers?

    If the muslims conquered these two great empires by fluke, what is the mystery surrounding this muslim empire that they never faced any retaliation whatsoever? Until of course the "So called Retaliation" The Crusades?

    If the muslims conquered those regions by tyranny, & converted people by oppression, why was there not any political unrest recorded in those regions? Especially when those anti-muslim empire historian accuse this empire of forcefully implementing the second nationality status to non-muslims?

    What made the people of those regions pledge their allegiance to this new empire? Were they Cowards?

    As alleged, that the muslims converted the people by force why was it still accounted in history that the population existing had a good mix of non-muslims? why did not the thought of another exodus arise in their brains? what was the reason nothing happened?

    What was the reason the entire Christian Empire out of the muslim Empire never faced a huge influx of refugees problems? Which is quiet typical in situation of such alleged difficult odds?

    What was the reason that this new uprising Muslim Empire mysteriously enjoyed greater growth in economy considering the alleged fact of these regions were conquered by tyranny & slavery was stamped on the non-muslims? The normal behavior of a region that is forced into slavery never shows any economic progress rather it shows a downfall...

    What reason may be given to the growth & new research in knowledge in the muslim empire that too in such a cohesive manner amongst the muslims, christians & jews residing in that muslim empire? why were these community not at the throat of each other at that point of time?

    Especially why were the Jews so happy & lived peacefully in the muslim empire when they were the football of the Christian Empire that the muslim conquered?

    Why were those new researches so easily got incorporated in the muslim empire with a whole hearted acceptance by the rulers? When even after the crusades & at the point of renaissance in Europe new researches & discoveries were branded as heresy & witch hunting was the favorite pass time?

    there are many more questions that can be asked...but it is suffice to get the answer for the above ones for the time being....especially from a person who so chronologically has mentioned the muslim conquest of so called "Christian Empire" & alleges that for a tyrannical conquer of muslim of "Christian Empire" the Crusade was a fair retaliation?

    My Answer for the questions I pose above is:

    The Muslims never had an agenda of conquering land for any sort of economic benefits. The secret of their conquer of these land lie in the new intellectual & spiritual wealth that they carried; which automatically found fans in those regions amongst the people & people are always inclined to a new system that provides them relief from any existing tyranny(mental tyranny too) in their land...The proof of that tyranny that was prevalent in those land before the intellectual conquest of the muslims is quiet evident in the well recorded history that took place in the aftermath of Crusades in the Christian World in particularly Europe that were called as: Renaissance, Witch hunting stories, Several Revolutions, Scientific Research hurdles faced by scientist in the name of religion etc...

    I highly doubt the Crusade was any sort of retaliation. Rather It was one of the biggest scandal in history that turned the Europeans for no reasons against the Middle-eastern & some part of the European world. And it was such a venomous conspiracy of the then Church's religious land grabbing movement to establish the "Kingdom of Heaven" it left the world torn till today...And the sickness of it is till now prevalent...

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YV74T4KDYPZUUCGJZ6LPCBATTM Bruce

    leofwin...there are so many errors in your reponse to my post that I
    hardly know where to begin.....lets deal with just a few shall we?

    1/ At no point did i suggest that Islamic inspired agressions against the Eastern Church was non existent.

    2/Nonsense..Christian doctrine was undermined, obscured and manipulated absolutely! Urban promised that Gods commandement "Thou shalt not kill" did not apply to the murder of Saracens who desecrated the Christian Holy places. Indeed a commandment is a principle taken literally..it is not subject to interpretation ..it's an unambiguous absolute! Thereion subjective evaluations are apt and correct. If you were a student of philiosophy you would understand that each conclusion is questioned only in reference to the cogency of its premises.

    3/ The First Crusade was not so much a military expedition as a "Mass migration" based on the fundemental belief (created by Urban) that all sins could be erased in acts iof holy war under Papal recognition. I drew my conclusions about Urban based on this fact alone - you are free to draw yours!

    4/Jerusalem was never a Christian city until 1099. It was a city where religiosity of many kinds and strains flourished and were accepted. No religious ownership of the city existed until 1099...indeed Jew, Muslim and Christain all shared holy places and free access to those holy places no matter the predominating faith of its rulers. This ended following the fall of Jerusalem to the Christian crusaders in 1099.

    5/Clearly you know very little about Manzikert - several protestations for assistance had been made to Rome before Alexios Komnenus (1082) wrote his famous treatise on the need to secure the Eastern Church from threat. Indeed many requests to Rome for help in driving the Seljuk Turks from Anatolia pre date 1095...you really do need to read more!

    6/The 1st Crusade was never called to secure Anatolia from the Seljuk Turks..it was called to recover Jerusalem and the holy lands from Saracen control! Your religiously inspired post modernism is intellectually retarded and historically innacurate!

    7/ My Judgement of Urban is based in fact, not suspicion and prejudice. He didn't ask Western Christendom to restore the Eastern Church and Eastern provinces from the Turk - he asked that the holy lands be conquered in the name of "God and Rome"...Deus Le Volt (God Wills It) was a LIE - what mortal presumes upon the will of divinity?

    8/ You said "I think it's safe to say the Muslims had it coming"...really! If that's not a righteouss justification for the mass murfder committed under the Papal Banner in 1099, it is certainly the next best thing! It's a moral judgment friend and you made it. Own your words and don't try to impose a new logic to justify an unjustifiable event or defer responsibility for your claim.

    Passionate debate is good...but lets keep the discussion within the realms of Historical accuracy ok? I suggest you read a wonderful work called "Gods War" by Christopher Tyerman...it may provide you with greater perspective.

    In answer to you claim re my anti christian senitment - wrong..I judge not by a mans faith...but rather by his deeds wrongly done in the name of faith on this occassion - thus my commentary re Urban. No particular faith has a monopoply on war..that's the pity of it all.

    Kind Regards

  • Leofwin

    "Next time when adding wiki links...do try to read yourself before posting them... This is what your quoted(wiki) authentic source has to say about muslim conquests:

    "The reasons for the Muslim success are hard to reconstruct in hindsight, primarily because only fragmentary sources from the period have survived. Most historians agree that the Sassanid Persian and Byzantine Roman empires were militarily and economically exhausted from decades of fighting one another."

    So when I mentioned sleeping, the above statement from Wikipedia backup my sarcastic statement..."

    I have read them. And that statement does not back uo your statement about them "sleeping". What does that even mean? What point are you trying to make? That because their armies were militarily and economically exhausted, that gave the Muslims some moral mandate to invade and conquer them? Once again, what point are you trying to make? The Muslim armies invaded and conquered them. These are the facts. If I beat up an exhausted person in the street, the fact that they're exhausted doesn't make it okay.

    "But above all the bottom line according to Wikipedia is:(your source of proof): the reasons for Muslim or Islamic Up-rise is Unknown... And whatever you mention about fight-back those were not fight-backs those were really small quarrels... Fight backs are actually huge Revolution(Revolt) that have multi dimensions like: Political, Economical, Moral anyways there is not much record of such huge fight backs until the Crusades & Post Crusades wars that were but a mere passion driven wars not wars made for Justice & Peace...Therefore next time while making statement do verify what you write..."

    Wikipedia is not "my source of proof". History is my source of proof. This is the internet, and wikipedia links are the most convenient. Also, they contain links to primary sources. What do you want me to do? Recommend a list a books? Fine. The Muslim historians of the Crusades have been collected in a book called "Arab Hisotrians of the Crusades" by Francesco Gabrieli (Editor).

    And here are some Youtube videos WITH METICULOUSLY CITED PRIMARY MEDIEVAL SOURCES

    It is not enough to simply dismiss these videos as "biased" or "just Youtube videos". These videos cite specific examples of Muslim atrocities and specific medieval primary sources. If you're going to dispute medieval primary sources then you may as well dispute the whole middle ages. Maybe the Crusades never even happened? Can you PROVE the Crusades happened? I am being rhetorically facetious. The point I am making is that there is proof, there are sources, but you don't really want to know what they are. Watch the video "How Islamic Atrocities Provoked The Crusades" - and judge the veracity of the sources for yourself.

    A few sources are:

    Aristakes' History, where he describes Muslim atrocities against Christians:

    Michael the Syrian's Chronicle, where he describes Muslim atrocities against Christians::
    "Crusade Myths" by leading Crusades historian Tom Madden

    "The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam" by the Egyptian scholar Bat Ye'or.

    Even if wikipedia was "my source of proof", at least I've given one. What source have you given? None. Muslims were attacking Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews and Zoroastrians for 400 years before the Crusades happened.

    Jizya is a discriminatory tax that Muslim overlords make non-Muslim subjects pay. It is a crippling tax which is much more than Muslim subjects have to pay. It indirectly forced people to convert to Islam in order to survive.

    If Islam doens't persecute Christians, then what's going on in Iran RIGHT NOW with PASTOR YOUCEF NADARKANI? He is a Christian pastor who is going to be executed in Iran JUST BECAUSE HE IS A CHRISTIAN.

    Islam is notoriously racist against blacks, Islam enslaved millions of black people. Even today blacks in Egypt are discriminated against, for example read this article about racism in Egypt:

    120,000,000 Africans.
    Thomas Sowell [Thomas Sowell, Race and Culture, BasicBooks, 1994, p. 188] estimates that 11 million slaves were shipped across the Atlantic and 14 million were sent to the Islamic nations of North Africa and the Middle East. For every slave captured many others died. Estimates of this collateral damage vary. The renowned missionary David Livingstone estimated that for every slave who reached a plantation, five others were killed in the initial raid or died of illness and privation on the forced march.[Woman’s Presbyterian Board of Missions, David Livingstone, p. 62, 1888] Those who were left behind were the very young, the weak, the sick and the old. These soon died since the main providers had been killed or enslaved. So, for 25 million slaves delivered to the market, we have an estimated death of about 120 million people. Islam ran the wholesale slave trade in Africa.
    I'd also remind you that the Muslim colonisation of India was far more brutal and oppressive than the British colonisation ever was.

    80,000,000 Hindus.
    Koenard Elst in Negationism in India gives an estimate of 80 million Hindus killed in the total jihad against India. [Koenard Elst, Negationism in India, Voice of India, New Delhi, 2002, pg. 34.] The country of India today is only half the size of ancient India, due to jihad. The mountains near India are called the Hindu Kush, meaning the “funeral pyre of the Hindus.”

    60,000,000 Christians.
    The number of Christians martyred by Islam is 9 million [David B. Barrett, Todd M. Johnson, World Christian Trends AD 30-AD 2200, William Carey Library, 2001, p. 230, table 4-10] . A rough estimate by Raphael Moore in History of Asia Minor is that another 50 million died in wars by jihad. So counting the million African Christians killed in the 20th century we have 60 million Christians.

    10,000,000 Buddhists.
    Buddhists do not keep up with the history of war. Keep in mind that in jihad only Christians and Jews were allowed to survive as dhimmis (servants to Islam); everyone else had to convert or die. Jihad killed the Buddhists in Turkey, Afghanistan, along the Silk Route, and in India. The total is roughly 10 million. [David B. Barrett, Todd M. Johnson, World Christian Trends AD 30-AD 2200, William Carey Library, 2001, p. 230, table 4-1.]

    20,000+ Zoroastrians:

    Jews.
    The jihad in Arabia was 100 percent effective, but the numbers were in the thousands, not millions. After that, the Jews submitted and became the dhimmis (servants and second class citizens) of Islam and did not have geographic political power.

    Baha'is

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YV74T4KDYPZUUCGJZ6LPCBATTM Bruce

    MohammedSafwan,

    interesting post - you introduce some great ideas and views. The Crusades were indeed a scandal - and i agree with you absolutely on the legacy of the Crusades being felt today. I find the Christian "We were the victims of Islamic agression so Islam deserves to die " mindset bereft of morality and understanding. Someone ought to remind such "Thinkers" that Christianity has inspired and exported death to every corner of the globe for more than 1000 years ..from the Crusades, the Conquistador expeditions to the Americas - the French, Belgian, Dutch and English expeditions to Africa and Asia all began as Christian inspired movements.

    To ignore the impact of Christian ethics and doctrine, and the inevitable legacy for hundreds of millions of people globally, is to deny reality. The legal systems of almost every Western Society finds its roots in Christian doctrine...moreover, the International Charters on Human Rights were created as a direct result of the maintenance and imposition of Christian doctrine - and this at the expense of the doctrines of other great religions. Christianity has imposed itself at the point of the sword and gun as much or more than any of the other great religions - often to the detrement of the human experience.

    Interestingly, and something rarely acknowldged, is that Islam was the keeper of science, mathematics, culture and justice when Europe drifted through the Dark ages bereft of anything but war, death, ignorance and brutality. Indeed Islam was the custodian of every facet of human civilization during this period ...this must never be forgotten or ignored! Of course this is not to say that worthy benefits were not derived from Christianity, Judaism, Taoism etc etc - on the contrary. The tragedy of the existence of the great religions is that good and evil can be found on every page of the history they trace.

    I find the never ending argument over religiosly inspired moral ascendency tedious and ignorant - it smacks of compeitionism!

    My Best Wishes

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YV74T4KDYPZUUCGJZ6LPCBATTM Bruce

    leofwin....

    1/ The expansion of Islam Westward was akin to the expansion of Christedom Northward, Eastward, Westward and Southward at the point of a sword..let me remind you, while you hasten to defend the right of Christian retaliation against wanton violence from Islam, that Christians spent 400 years killing their own...does the term "Inquisition" mean anything?? What military defense against that..perhaps conversion to another religion or liberation and salvation at the hands of an alternate religion?

    ...I am not sure what your point is...um...err religiously inspired violence leads to acts of comparabale aggression in response?...Gee...how very enlightening...perhaps you could've made reference to a single claim.."Violence begets Violence" without singling out a particular religious grouping ......one you seem clearly motivated to attack and lambaste at every opportunity!

    SEE -

    a/ The Bloody Empire - Charles Horvath
    Oxford Uni Press 1988

    b/Making War for God - Alton Vance
    Seamus Publishing 1995

    2/ You will find that the Byazantine Empire was kept in tact at the point of a sword and wars of conquest against Arabs were common place.. There were 17 military expeditions against Arabs in the first 100 years of emergeance of the Byzantine Empire..incursions by the Byzantine Empire to the east and their violent preservation of landholdings in North Africa were merely extensions of the tactics and mindset employed by Rome for the preservation of lands against native interest. This you ignore monumentally!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Where your entire argument falls down is where you make the claim about Christians being the FIRST to be attacked by Islam. History did not start with the accent of Mohammed to Heaven....Religions don't fight wars, peoples do...the Arabs had lived at the beckon whim of Byzantine agression for centuries before they were united under a religious banner that provided scope for social, political, economic and military unification and action. It was only after this "Unification" that SOME religiously inspired Arab sects (Seljuk Turks) began fighting back!!!

    Islam became the catalyst for retaliation...so your claim about Christianity being attacked first is a complete and utter nonsense! Constantines empire was ruled, governed and expanded by violence...thats why the Byzantines built fortifications in the East before Mohammad was even born!

    See -

    a/ A History of the Byzantine Empire Vols 1 & 2 - Alexander Vasiliev
    Troubador Press 1976

    b/ Bloody Judea and the Legacy of Rome - Simon Gauthier
    Altus Print 1981

    3/ My point re Christian docrtine, so obviously missed by yourself, is to do with HYPOCRISY - that the Pope is supposed to be the religiously inspired representative of mortal man and a conduit in faith to god... NOT god himself....that the Crusades were a creation in the brain of a twisted Pope is only made worse in fact that the Crusades were NEVER wars of defence designed to secure, restore and preserve the ancient map of the Byzantine Empire, rather they were religiously inspired wars of Conquest into lands NEVER occupied, controlled or governed by the Byzantines and/or Christendom!!!

    The Crusades were not acts of defense - they were conquests!
    Now which part of this are you struggling with????

    I could go on in a long winded post and deal with every claim you made below but this isn't the forum for such...I am happy for you to e mail me and we can conitnue the struggle there... find cheechnchongsbong at youtube..go to my channel and leave your deails...

    Best Wishes and Kind Regards

    Cheers

  • Leofwin

    "The Christian expansion North, West, East and South" has no bearing on Arab Muslims because it didn't involve Arab Muslims. If I'm walking down the street and I see a man who once punched his family member, I don't get to punch him. Are you suggesting that Muslims invaded Christendom on some sort of moral mandate to get revenge for . . . who? The Pagan Europeans? Yeah, right. Muslims sticking up for Pagans . . . Muslims hated Pagans and wouldn't even let them live. Just look at how Muslims treated the poor Pagan Meccans in the early 7th century. Muhammed and his army stormed into Mecca and smashed all the statues and outlawed Paganism.

    The spread of Christianity was mostly peaceful. The Goths voluntarily converted without force. So did the Franks. So did most of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, the ones that didn't were killed by their own. The spread of Islam Westward is not comparible to the spread of Christianity Northward.

    Christianity didn't really spread Eastward . . . because Christianity came from the East (Palestine) and spread West through word of mouth.

    I am familar with the conversion of Europe to Christianity, if that's what you're referring to. ( Ref: The Cross Goes North:
    Processes of Conversion in Northern Europe, AD 300-1300 Martin Carver Boydell Press, 2006 - 588 pages) The conversion of Europe was mostly peaceful. Iceland converted by a peaceful act of parliament in 1000 AD - it was not conquered by an army of foreign Christians!

    The only exception to this rule was the violence that occured around the Baltic and North sea in the conversion of Norway, Sacony, Lithuania . . . but this happened CENTURIES AFTER THE MUSLIM INVASIONS. The Muslim armies didn't know that in later centuries, Christians were going to expand into Northern Europe. And even if they did, they wouldn't have cared. Muslims hate Paganism.

    The history of Muslim-Christian violence begins with the first time once of them attacked the other. For one to attack the other, they both need to have existed.

    The Arabs were from Arabia. The Byzantne Empire at its furthest extent never extended into Arabia. Give me some examples of the Byzantine Empire ever extending into Arabia. At its furthest extent under Justinian in the 6th century, the most Eastward province was Palestine.

    The Crusades were trying to take Anatolia and Jerusalem back from Muslim occupiers. Anatolia and Jerusalem were both parts of the Byzantime Empire. So when you say "the Crusades were NEVER wars of defence designed to secure, restore and preserve the ancient map of the Byzantine Empire, rather they were religiously inspired wars of Conquest into lands NEVER occupied, controlled or governed by the Byzantines and/or Christendom!!!", it is simply not true.

    ALL the territory controlled by Muslims in 1095 WAS ORIGINALLY CHRISTIAN LAND (with the exception of Perisa, India, Afghanistan and Arabia which were Zoroastrian, Hindu, Buddhist and Arab/Meccan Pagan). Someone needs to go and check their maps.

    @MohammedSafwan
    I have replied to you at length, but it said my comments needed to be approved by a moderator. And for some reason I am still waiting after two or three days . . .

  • Achems_Razor

    @Leofwin:

    The reason that your post of a day or so ago has not been approved is because you have 54 links, mostly to Wikipedia, way to much to approve @Leofwin.

  • Leofwin

    Why can't you approve it just because it has links in it? I've posted comments with links before and it was never a problem. I don't think it's fair to withhold it, because it's not as if I saved it on my computer or anything. So now I'm going to have to type out a long reply all over again, and I don't really want to. Where can I find the moderation rules so that this doesn't happen in future?

  • Achems_Razor

    @Leofwin:

    Please read (Comment Policy) up top, In there it says how long can a comment be, and specifically says,"Please do not Exaggerate" links by adding more than 2 links which should be sufficient, you had a total of 54 links in one comment!

  • Leofwin

    Alright, I didn't know there was a limit of two links as I have posted more than that before. Could you please post the reply and remove the wikipedia links?

  • Achems_Razor

    @Leofwin:

    Alright, added back your post without your links as requested. Had to take all 54 links off, it is up to you what links you want to add later, I will not do that.

  • Leofwin

    Thank you, I chopped out all the wikipedia links.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YV74T4KDYPZUUCGJZ6LPCBATTM Bruce

    leofwin..

    Ok..clearly you cannot follow any logical discussion...so I will accommodate you because unless things flow A-B-C you simply cannot keep account of the running discussion..

    In this case - in response to each of your points below...

    The Byzantine Empire arose from the ashes of the old Roman Empire - many of the old Eastern provinces of Rome were simply transferred to what Sonimus referred to as the "New Rulers"...

    The term Arab, as per the definition as applied by Vasiliev refers to all those inhabitants of the old Eastern Provinces of Rome..to the far borders of Persia!

    Your ignorance is astounding - Christian expeditions against Pagans and heretics began well before the Spanish inquisition of the 15th century. The inquisition spanned 700 years and included such murderous events as the Albigensian Crusade. At no time did I make the claim that Islam went to war for pagans. You're being dishonest!

    The spread of Christianity was mostly peaceful? This claim is false! The Holy Roman Empire was built on the blood of Non Believers - you too must have missed the conquistador expeditions...and so many more brutal acts of mass murder in the name of Rome. Again, you are either ignorant, confused or dishonest.

    I never claimed to be an expert but by comparison to your stated ignorance I can imagine why you might choose to bestow that title!

    Christianity did very definately spread eastward ..that's what the Crusades were about! Again - you can't sustain a logical argument. The first true Christian Church of the East was the Coptic Church in Egypt!

    You forgot to include North Africa in the holdings of the Byzantine Empire -including the old city formerly known as Carthage.

    In answer to your question re Brittania - the spread of Christianity came from Ireland...and much resistance was encountered in its spread. You present the spread of Christianity in Europe as a peaceful affair of religious enlightenment - this is nonsense! Your claim re France/Gaul is also a nonsense - clearly you need to read more on the Merovingian Kings!

    Your claim re Christianity being the predominant religion in the east is also wrong - yes the Christian message was spreading but the spread was sporadic with many different sects operating in defiance of the doctrines as set down at Nicea!

    The "Who threw the first punch" mindset is so 7th grade as be properly and rightly ignored.

    Again - both Islam and Christianity drew numbers to their respective causes at the point of a sword as well as by word of mouth...neither religion can rightly claim to hold a monopoly on peace or war.

    so let us return to my very first point - The Crusades were wars of conquest designed not to defend the Byzantine Empire but to restore Jerusalem and the Holy lands to Rome. On their way to the Crusades Germanic Nobles authorized war on Jews and Pagans - for gods sake they sacked Constantinople and put a whore on the Throne...peaceful you say?

    Kind Regards

  • Leofwin

    "Unless things flow A-B-C? Yes, that's what I'm talking about: CAUSALITY and CHRONOLOGY. You're the one who can't keep track of a discussion because you keep injecting things which are obviously nothing to do with what we're talking about. We're talking about the Crusades, and whether the Crusades were provoked or unprovoked. My argument is that the Crusades were provoked by 400 years of Muslim aggression against Christians, which was unprovoked. Now, obviously the Umayid and Rashidun Caliphates who commited these atrocities against Christendom could not have been provoked by the Inquisition, for two reasons. 1) The Inquisition hadn't happened yet. 2) The Inquisition was an internal European affair, not waged against the Middle East.

    Vasiliev's definition is wrong then. The term Arab as applied by every other scholar is someone whose mother tongue is Arabic. Persia was never part of The Byzantine Empire.,Persia attacked the Byzantine Empire.

    You said "the Inqisition". It's not my fault you're using the wrong words! You can't say one thing, and then call me ignorant because you actually meant something else! Say what you mean. When you said "the Inquisition" I assumed you meant the Spanish Inquisition in the 15th century. So which Inquistion were you talking about, because none of the Inquisitions were against Pagans. The Albegensian Crusade (note: Crusade, not Inquisition) was in the 13th century. Fine. 13th and not 15th century. 200 years. The 13th century is still long after Muslims began attacking Christendom. And the Albegensian Crusade only lasted 20 years. You accuse me of dishonesty, because you never argued that Muslims attacked Christians because of Pagans. If you understand that, then why did you bring it up?

    And just how much did Christians persecute Pagans? Charlemagne persecuted the Saxon Pagans during the Saxon Wars, 772 - 804. Olav Trygvasson persecuted the Norwegian Pagans during the conversion of Norway, 995-1000 (a whopping 5 years). And the Baltic Pagans were persecuted during the Wendish/Northern Crusades in the 12th - 14th century.

    The Goths converted peacefully. So did the Franks. The Anglo-Saxons mostly did, except for one tiny island, the Isle of Wight, in 686 AD. But that was another English king that did that, and he wasn't even baptised. Russia converted peacefully. So did Denmark.

    The spread of Christianity UP TO THE TIME OF THE CRUSADES was MOSTLY peaceful. We are talking about THE CRUSADES remember? I admitted all along that there was violence in Saxony and in Norway. And again, you're confused about chronology, the Conquistadors were in the 16th century! What does that have to do with what we're talking about, which is that Muslims had been attacking Christendom for 400 years before the Crusades?

    Egypt was converted to Christianity FROM THE EAST. Where do you think Christianity started . . . Hawaii? Egypt was part of the Roman Empire and it converted when the Roman Empire did. Go and look at a map. See where Palestine is? And see where Egypt is? Egypt is WEST of Palestine. And Christianity began in Palestine. Therefore, Christianity spread Westwards.

    Also, the Crusaders didn't significantly force Muslims to convert to Christianity. It wasn't about "spreading Christianity", it was about taking back Christian control. And you're missing my entire argument. I'm talking about spreading Christianity into areas that were never Christian. Yes, the Crusades were an Eastward movement of Christians, TO FIGHT BACK AGAINST THE WESTWARD MOVEMENT OF MUSLIMS.

    The majority of North Africa wasn't part of the Byzantine Empire. Save Egypt, North Africa had been part of the Western Roman Empire and then taken over by the Vandals. Besides, when did I "forget to include North Africa"?

    Of course Christianity did technically spread Eastward on certain occasions inside Europe (eg the English mission to Germany), but Europe is to the West of Palestine, which is where Christianity started. So ultimately the flow of Christianity was from East to West. When I say it didn't spread Eastwards, I mean East of where it started, Palestine. The main movement was to the West.

    When you talk about Brittania, you're confused about your chronology again. The Roman province of Brittania converted to Christianity before Ireland did. Being part of the Roman Empire, Brittania recieved Christianity from the East, and converted in the 4th century AD with the rest of the Roman Empire. Ireland, being outside the Roman empire, remained Pagan. Saint Patrick was the man who converted Ireland to Christianity. And where was Saint Patrick from? He was from Brittania! And what direction does one travel to get from Britain to Ireland? West. Christianity flowed West from Britain to Ireland in the 5th century. And it spread peacefully. If you think Saint Patrick was a violent man, then show me your proof. Because the conversion of Ireland was peaceful.

    Yes, the LATER Columban mission which Christianised Northern Britain in the 6th and 7th century was from Ireland, which is an Eastward flow. But Christianity came to Ireland in a Westward flow. Southern Britain gave Christianity to Ireland in the 5th century, and then Ireland gave Christianity to Northern Britain in the 6th century. Like Christianity came from Palestine and then bounced back to Palestine in the Crusades.

    You talk about the Merovingian Kings. Clovis was the first Merovingian King to convert to Christianity, and he converted to Christinaity of his own free will circa 498 AD. The conversion of the Franks was peaceful. It involved monks, not foreign armies.

    Regardless of which version of Christianity Christians were, they were Christians not Muslims. Sure, there are different versions of Christianity. There are different versions of Islam. There are different versions of Buddhism. What's your point?

    "Who threw the first punch" seems to be very important when liberals blame contemporary Muslim aggression on the Crusades.

    I never talked about a monopoly. I said that the Crusades were a response to 400 years of unprovoked Muslim aggression against Christendom.

    Yes, the Crusades were to restore Jerusalem to Christian control. That's what I've been saying. And the Crusaders did not authorise war on any Pagans "on their way". On their way to Jerusalem? Which pagans did they attack on their way to Jerusalem? Are you talking about the later Northen Crusades in the Baltic? They weren't part of the Crusades in the Middle East, and cannot be the reason Muslims attacked Christians.

    Kind Regards

  • Leofwin

    Give me an example of me back-tracking and using semantics and false assertions.

    I do not "rely" on wikipedia. It is a convenient reference to use on the internet as a starting point to find where we agree and disagree. And almost every sentence on wikipedia has a citation to a primary or secondary source which you can follow up for yourself. The information does not arrive arbitrarily. Wikipedia is better than nothing. You have referred to a few books in your argument - all secondary sources I might add. But I have also referred to a number of books, both primary and secondary sources. But do you really want to play a game of who referred to more books?

    When I said the main flow of Christianity was Westward, I mean West from where Christianity began spreading: Palestine. Things like the Irish mission to Scotland are little Eastward expansions within the wider pattern of Westward expansion. Obviously it spread North and South too, but North-West and South-West relative to its origin. But it spread West first. It spread West from Palestine, West through the Roman Empire. Parts of Europe that were outside Rome's influence then required Eastward expansions to convert them. (I use the word "required" from the point of view of history. I am not making a value judgement between Christianity and Paganism). But the later Eastward expansions were after the primary Westward expansion from Palestine. Same with the Crusades. The area the Crusaders "spread Christianity to" were originally Christian.

    When you use the term "the Inquisition" (singular), I, like most people I'll warrant, assume you're talking about the most famous of the Inquisitions, the Spanish Inquisition in the 15th century. There were other Inquisitions before that, going back to the 12th century. And to the best of my knowledge, none of the Inquisitions were against Pagans, which is what you claimed. In the 12th century, most of Europe was already Christian. Only the Baltic remained Pagan. If you are using the term "the Inquisiiton" to refer to the conversion of Europe in general, then you are using the wrong word. This is important because I need to know what you're talking about if I'm going to agree or disagree.

    Throughout this discussion you have relied on inflammatory Ad Hominem abuse and done little to refute my points or to clarify your often vague assertions with specific information and examples. In fact, I have actually provided more specific examples of Medieval Christians converting Pagans by force than you have (such as Cædwalla 686, Charlemagne 772-804 and Olav Trygvsson 995-1000). But this was to native Pagans, not to foreign Muslims. And Muslims displaced their own Arabic Pagans in much the same way. The spread of Islam in Arabia itself involved violence too.

    ????? ?????

  • Drakka

    Leofwin, it's obvious you're trying to speak to the deaf. You've made so many solid, indisputable points, backed with factual and CURRENT research, and they still refuse to budge on even a single part. Rather, they just attempt to bring up more and more irrelevant information. It's plain that the two you are attempting to enlighten are Muslim themselves, and every word falls upon ears unwilling to listen.

  • JEFF_777

    Let's get something straight! ANYTHING that came from Roman Catholicism is NOT true Christianity! So, these were just men with power USING the name of Christ!

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/BRLMQHHJGU6DVSD6K6KXH4GZB4 Matt

    It's pretty neat seeing how Europeans actually idolize Saladin more than his own people do. Nemesis to hero.

  • Tyseer1908

    That's cuz Saladin, my ancestor, was a real Muslim, and he's one of dozens of great examples, of godly honorable men, in Islam. Every Muslim loves Saladin. Because he kept to his faith in a time of trial.

  • Shezy002

    How do u view the complete series? I mean I am not able to c the second part of the video?

  • Taibu69

    @leofwin... What kind of ppl are you trying to justify here? On one side there are those who twist the teaching of their own religion to their economic and cultural benefits to an extent that they do complete opposite things to what their religious book o their prophet teaches, kill their fellow Christians for monetary and political benefits,kill innocent women and children and barbariously fry and even eat them!!!!, kill innocent unarmed pilgrims and commit endless atrocities which are in no way the teachings of Jesus (pbuh). And on the other there are those righteous leaders who allow ppl of both religions to coexist in their own kingdom and allow them to practise their own practises and provide them safety by risking their own lives! It is also mentioned that Damascus was captured without spilling a single drop of blood because Saladin did not want to hurt his fellow Muslims. This is the kind of righteous practises which they had imbibed in them even during the course of war which speaks volumes about the characters of both sides. And the fact that all these studies and revelations are coming from

  • Bobby2013

    You blatantly lost this debate.

  • Bobby2013

    I really enjoyed reading your informative arguments. It is a pity the other side of the debate was not as objective. And to add to that, quite rude and insulting.

    I was amazed to see Bruce lay point after point out in numbers and in each one call you ignorant or some other insult. Namecalling has no place in a debate.

    One-up-manship might occur accidentally and that's fine, but a debate shouldn't be carried on simply to 'beat' the other side. If you are wrong you are wrong and thats it.

    I think I will spend some time looking at some of your sources. Thanks for the information. And be well.

  • http://www.catholic.com/ likeasaint

    Where do you think the Bible came from?

  • a_no_n

    Do you want to apply that eagle eye for history to what Christianity was up to?
    After constantine converted the Roman empire to Christianity, the whole empire was based with a simple equasion, convert or die, and Christians carried that attitude on well into the modern age.

    by comparison, Islam is quite tame!

  • Alisha Nasier

    ....Reading the comments, it's like somehow along the way, amongst all the "Christians had it
    coming" and "Muslims had it coming", we somehow forget about the
    Jewish people implicated in the Crusades.

    Jerusalem was a ground
    where all three religions lived together in harmony. Regardless of which
    religion instigated what first and when, it ultimately did not change
    the fact that the Crusades destroyed that precious harmony and the
    fruits of vast knowledge that grew from it.

    In my humble
    opinion, in the end it's not the religion; it's not about "History
    proves Muslims/Christians/Jews are......"-- but rather, it's how
    destructive humans can be in interpreting their beliefs and acting upon
    it. And do note that here I say 'beliefs' and not religion... Because it's the interpretation that ultimately leads to the acts committed by them.

  • lunawolve

    thanks for your post, i think there are not many people knowledgeable in the crusades, or at least not biased with old ideas.

  • Jayvijay Gohil

    Here are some quick facts…

    The first Crusade began in 1095… 460 years after the first Christian city was overrun by Muslim armies, 457 years after Jerusalem was conquered by Muslim armies, 453 years after Egypt was taken by Muslim armies, 443 after Muslims first plundered Italy, 427 years after Muslim armies first laid siege to the Christian capital of Constantinople, 380 years after Spain was conquered by Muslim armies, 363 years after France was first attacked by Muslim armies, 249 years after the capital of the Christian world, Rome itself, was sacked by a Muslim army, and only after centuries of church burnings, killings, enslavement and forced conversions of Christians.

    By the time the Crusades finally began, Muslim armies had conquered two-thirds of the Christian world.

    Europe had been harassed by Muslims since the first few years following Muhammad’s death. As early as 652, Muhammad’s followers launched raids on the island of Sicily, waging a full-scale occupation 200 years later that lasted almost a century and was punctuated by massacres, such as that at the town of Castrogiovanni, in which 8,000 Christians were put to death. In 1084, ten years before the first crusade, Muslims staged another devastating Sicilian raid, burning churches in Reggio, enslaving monks and raping an abbey of nuns before carrying them into captivity.

    In 1095, Byzantine Emperor, Alexius I Comneus began begging the pope in Rome for help in turning back the Muslim armies which were overrunning what is now Turkey, grabbing property as they went and turning churches into mosques. Several hundred thousand Christians had been killed in Anatolia alone in the decades following 1050 by Seljuk invaders interested in 'converting' the survivors to Islam.

    Not only were Christians losing their lives in their own lands to the Muslim advance but pilgrims to the Holy Land from other parts of Europe were being harassed, kidnapped, molested, forcibly converted to Islam and occasionally murdered. (Compare this to Islam’s justification for slaughter on the basis of Muslims being denied access to the Meccan pilgrimage in Muhammad’s time).

    Renowned scholar Bernard Lewis points out that the Crusades, though "often compared with the Muslim jihad, was a delayed and limited response to the jihad and in part also an imitation.... Forgiveness for sins to those who fought in defence of the holy Church of God and the Christian religion and polity, and eternal life for those fighting the infidel: these ideas... clearly reflect the Muslim notion of jihad."

    Lewis goes on to state that, "unlike the jihad, it [the Crusade] was concerned primarily with the defense or reconquest of threatened or lost Christian territory... The Muslim jihad, in contrast, was perceived as unlimited, as a religious obligation that would continue until all the world had either adopted the Muslim faith or submitted to Muslim rule... The object of jihad is to bring the whole world under Islamic law."

    The Crusaders only invaded lands that were Christian. They did not attack Saudi Arabia (other than a half-hearted expedition by a minor figure) or sack Mecca, as the Muslims had done (and continued doing) to Italy and Constantinople. Their primary goal was the recapture of Jerusalem and the security of safe passage for pilgrims. The toppling of the Muslim empire was not on the agenda.

    The period of Crusader “occupation” (of its own former land) was stretched tenuously over about 170 years, which is less than the Muslim occupation of Sicily and southern Italy alone - to say nothing of Spain and other lands that had never been Islamic before falling victim to Jihad. In fact, the Arab occupation of North Africa and Middle Eastern lands outside of Arabia is almost 1400 years old.

    Despite popular depiction, the Crusades were not a titanic battle between Christianity and Islam. Although originally dispatched by papal decree, the "occupiers" quickly became part of the political and economic fabric of the Middle East without much regard for religious differences. Their arrival was largely accepted by the local population as simply another change in authority. Muslim radicals even lamented the fact that many of their co-religionists preferred to live under Frankish (Christian) rule than migrate to Muslim lands.

    The Islamic world was split into warring factions, many of which allied themselves with the Frankish princes against each other at one time or another. This even included Saladin, the Kurdish warrior who is credited with eventually ousting the "Crusaders." Contrary to recent propaganda, however, Saladin had little interest in holy war until a rogue Frankish prince began disrupting his trade routes. Both before and after the taking of Jerusalem, his armies spent far more time and resources battling fellow Muslims.

    For its part, the Byzantine (Eastern Christian) Empire preferred to have little to do with the Crusader kingdoms and went so far as to sign treaties with their Muslim rivals on occasion.

    Another misconception is that the Crusader era was a time of constant war. In fact, very little of this overall period included significant hostilities. In response to Muslim expansion or aggression, there were only about 20 years of actual military campaigning, much of which was spent on organization and travel. (They were from 1098-1099, 1146-1148, 1188-1192, 1201-1204, 1218-1221, 1228-1229, and 1248-1250). By comparison, the Muslim Jihad against the island of Sicily alone lasted 75 grinding years.

    Ironically, the Crusades are justified by the Quran itself, which encourages Holy War in order to "drive them out of the places from whence they drove you out" (2:191), even though the aim wasn't to expel Muslims from the Middle East, but more to bring an end to the molestation of pilgrims. Holy war is not justified by New Testament teachings, which is why the Crusades are an anomaly, the brief interruption of centuries of relentless Jihad against Christianity that began long before and continued well after.

    The greatest crime of the Crusaders was the sacking of Jerusalem, in which at least 3,000 people were said to have been massacred. This number is dwarfed by the number of Jihad victims, from India to Constantinople, Africa and Narbonne, but Muslims have never apologized for their crimes and never will.

    What is called 'sin and excess' by other religions, is what Islam refers to as duty willed by Allah.

  • GJ

    Well, not quite. Christianity as well puts the religion before the lives of people (the first commandment is to not question the god, the killing and other such trivial things are secondary and have been seen as something forgivable for most of the duration of christianity) and Christianity is perhaps the most violent religion in history by killing and raping and pillaging all over the world for two thousand years. And there are still christian terrorists killing in Africa, there was the rape genocide in Bosnia in the 90s, etc. Christians are pretty damn violent.

  • JVG

    I am aware of that but what I am trying to say is that a lot of Muslims bring the crusades when they want to humiliate Christians. I am just stating a fact that it was a retaliation to increased Islam menace. Hope I cleared my point.