For 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.
Directed by: Chris Wilson
What about the siege of Ma'arra....
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.
....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.
@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
How do u view the complete series? I mean I am not able to c the second part of the video?
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.
It's pretty neat seeing how Europeans actually idolize Saladin more than his own people do. Nemesis to hero.
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!
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.
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?
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
Actually the Muslims were in Spain from 711 as you mention, till 1492 when Granada the last foothold of the Muslims was taken.
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.
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.
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?
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.
Just think how wonderful life might be without religion.
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.
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.
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.
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...
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
i like this documentary.but u not mentioned about the king philip of france
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
@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."
everyone shut up...ya, murad, go on dude. everyone loves fairy tales.
the holy war of jerusalem is still being fought now by the israelis and palestininans!
im still confuse how they build dome of the rock without must conquered it ?
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.
Wait, wait.... no one commented on the great narrator? For shame!
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).
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.
Fighting for the god of sand cults just proves the sand cult god doesn't exist.
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.
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
i read the books concerning the crusade.
this documentary is biased toward the christian...
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. :)