Combating Ignorance

The good people at The American Thinker, namely author Andrew G. Bostom, have provided an amazing resource on the real history behind the Crusades, the one Ridley Scott won't tell you, that Jihad Begot the Crusades.

Mr. Bostom goes into great detail with a great amount of foot notes as proof that it was indeed the teachings of Islam, beginning with Muhammad, but mostly after his death, that prompted what is refered to as Jihad. I just thought I would share some of the citations and his writing for those who want to see Kingdom of Heaven but with open eyes.

It is a lengthy article, so I would recommend printing it and reading it as you can, but please, please, please read it. It is so important to know history. It is more important to know it when it is under attack.

Disclaimer: if you are severely allergic or do not respond well to either historical accuracy or hard facts, I would encourage you to discontinue reading immediately. This will only help to cure ignorance, but as they say, sometimes the cure is worse than the disease. Please be advised.

From (primarily) the Hanafi school (as given in the Hidayah of Shaikh Burhanuddin Ali of Marghinan, d. 1196):
It is not lawful to make war upon any people who have never before been called to the faith, without previously requiring them to embrace it, because the Prophet so instructed his commanders, directing them to call the infidels to the faith, and also because the people will hence perceive that they are attacked for the sake of religion, and not for the sake of taking their property, or making slaves of their children, and on this consideration it is possible that they may be induced to agree to the call, in order to save themselves from the troubles of war… If the infidels, upon receiving the call, neither consent to it nor agree to pay capitation tax, it is then incumbent on the Muslims to call upon God for assistance, and to make war upon them, because God is the assistant of those who serve Him, and the destroyer of His enemies, the infidels, and it is necessary to implore His aid upon every occasion; the Prophet, moreover, commands us so to do.

bn Khaldun (d. 1406), jurist (Maliki), renowned philosopher, historian, and sociologist, summarized these consensus opinions from five centuries of prior Sunni Muslim jurisprudence with regard to the uniquely Islamic institution of jihad:

In the Muslim community, the holy war is a religious duty, because of the universalism of the [Muslim] mission and [the obligation to] convert everybody to Islam either by persuasion or by force... The other religious groups did not have a universal mission, and the holy war was not a religious duty for them, save only for purposes of defense... Islam is under obligation to gain power over other nations.

Mr. Bostom writes:
By the time of the classical Muslim historian al-Tabari’s death in 923, jihad wars had expanded the Muslim empire from Portugal to the Indian subcontinent. Subsequent Muslim conquests continued in Asia, as well as on Christian eastern European lands. The Christian kingdoms of Armenia, Byzantium, Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Croatia, and Albania, in addition to parts of Poland and Hungary, were also conquered and Islamized. When the Muslim armies were stopped at the gates of Vienna in 1683, over a millennium of jihad had transpired. [16] These tremendous military successes spawned a triumphalist jihad literature. Muslim historians recorded in detail the number of infidels slain or enslaved, the cities and villages which were pillaged, and the lands, treasure, and movable goods seized. Christian (Coptic, Armenian, Jacobite, Greek, Slav, etc.), as well as Hebrew sources, and even the scant Hindu and Buddhist writings which survived the ravages of the Muslim conquests, independently validate this narrative, and complement the Muslim perspective by providing testimonies of the suffering of the non-Muslim victims of jihad wars. [17]

The Crusades as an historical phenomenon were a reaction to events resulting from over 450 years of previous jihad campaigns. At the close of the 11th century, particularly after the crushing Byzantine defeat by the Seljuk Turks at Manzikert in 1071, Christendom, including Europe, was under existential threat by a confluence of Muslim advances. To the West, the Almoravid Berber Muslim tribes drove into Spain and pushed northward, pillaging and massacring the Christian populations they encountered. In the East, following their victory at Manzikert, the Seljuks put Armenia to fire and sword, and within a decade they had conquered three-fourths of Asia Minor. By 1090 C.E., Grousset has observed,

…Turkish Islam having almost entirely driven the Byzantines out of Asia [Minor], was preparing to pass over into Europe. [i.e., from the East]

Mr. Bostom goes into far more detail. The accounts are horrifying and very eye opening. What he describes that used to occur in Jerusalem is no different than what goes on today, only at the hands of the Arab Palestinians this time.

Posted by Portia at May 6, 2005 02:56 PM

Thanks for the "Thinker" links, I've read part one, yet to get into part two.

Posted by: Mike at May 10, 2005 09:31 AM