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During the middle ages, there have been multiple crusades that happened all over the Middle East. The Crusades were missions led by nobles. All of these crusades were meant to liberate and conquer Jerusalem or also called “The Holy City”. The first crusade out of the four main crusades came out as a success. The first crusade did conquer Jerusalem at first until it was taken back from them. The other three main crusades ended up as a failure, but the most embarrassing crusade was the fourth for the Christian crusaders fought, attacked and killed other Christians, then stole and looted from the city of Constantinople.
Christians believed that they were justified because they thought they were protecting other Christians from the Muslim Turks who were attacking Christian property and being tortured. And, the Crusaders did what the pope said which was believed to be close to Gods words. Christian Pilgrims once were allowed to Jerusalem for a toll but they were robbed, killed, beaten, etc.
There were reports of violent attacks on the Christian pilgrims. The Muslims in the other had their own reason that made more sense that the Crusade was unjustified. They’re a vast range of factors on whether the Crusades were justifies or not justified.
For the Christians the Crusades is to be justified because of several reasons. The real purpose of the Crusades was to conquer Jerusalem. “The first crusade was the most successful in that it actually accomplished what it set out to do-conquer Jerusalem”, (Capture) said an unknown witness of the Crusade.
It was the most successful crusade. It became a convincing idea to the Roman Catholics. Once the Muslims took over Jerusalem, the Christians thought that the holy land was filled with Turks and Arabs. So, the Pope said it God’s will to go on a Crusade against the Muslims. “All who die by the way, whether by land or by the sea, or in battle against the pagans, shall have immediate remission sins.
This I grant them through the power of God with which I am invested,”(Urban II). Pope Urban II himself during the Council at Clermont said this. This encouraged the Europeans to go the Crusades. Before the first Crusade, Al Hakim, an Egyptian ruler, “ordered the destruction of the holy sepulcher”. (Al-Hakim-Wikipedia). The Egyptian ruler, Al hakim ordered the destruction of the holy sepulcher which when done, it threatened the Christians and its a property to the Christians which this relates to why the Crusades were launched. The Pope also commanded the Christians to liberate Jerusalem and to kill the vile race so, these points could be argued that the Christian Crusades were justified.
Now looking at the Muslim perspective, Muslims believed that the Crusades were not justified at all due to certain factors. One of it is that there were knights in Spain and Italy who ‘took the cross’ and killed Muslims rather than traveling to the holy lands. The pope directly said to the knight that the to kill the Muslim served a high purpose just as regaining control over Jerusalem. “The clearest sign possible sign of this lies in Urban’s own actions at the very start of the crusading movement: knights who ‘took the cross’ in Spain and Italy were encouraged to fight the Muslims of those areas rather than traveling to the holy lands”(Muslims). The fact that some Knights went to Italy and Spain were encouraged to fight the Muslims proves that the Knights were violent rather than focusing on liberating the ‘holy lands’.
Secondly, during the first crusade, there were “thousands of peasants” and they all had a “desire to escape their squalid condition” meanwhile, those who were not peasants were mostly the youngest males of the family. They would go because they were “looking for land and a position in society”. (Textbook page 182 paragraphs 6). This is undeniable evidence that the Knights were on pursuit for personal gain rather than a religious war. The injustice of the crusades is also fed by the fact that the Crusaders who also killed other Christians who were considered to be ‘foreigners’ in the holy lands. This became a major weak point when the Crusaders invaded the holy lands. By all this, the Crusades were totally unjustified because of the Crusades who were focused on gaining personal needs.
The reason of why the Crusades were mostly not justified outweighs the reasons of how they were justified. But there are some examples that the Christians have the right to go on the Crusades. The reason is that the Christians showed restraint for many years when their pilgrims were harassed and threatened by the Muslims. Another example of why the Christians could be said that their acts are justified is because they followed the pope’s orders, which is a bit of a lame excuse comparing to the Muslims side of un-justification. But the Muslims have a stronger argument. Beha-ed-Din a member of Saladin’s court claims that King Richard broke his truce. “King broke his promises to them and made open display of what he had till now kept hidden in his heart, by carrying out intended to do after he had received the money and the Frank prisoners. It is thus that people of his nation ultimately admitted”, (Slaughter) said Beha-ed-Din. This proved that the Christian leader were untrustworthy. By weighing these two arguments, the Muslim side appears to make more sense. This eventually leads to the decision of the Crusades to be justified.
Overall, this is important because we need to know history of the Crusades. Some connections is peasants relating to poor families because, they both join the military in search for a better life or a sense of adventure. Americans could say they are preventing another attack like 9/11 and likewise to the Christian Crusaders. Although, some could argue that the Americans act of violence and the death of many innocent Muslims can be blamed on the US military. Plus, the crusades is also mainly based one’s bias in some cases, A Christian guy would say that the Crusades was justified whereas a Muslim would say the Crusades were totally not justified. Meanwhile, a Hindu for example would say neither side is justified. There is no exact proof of whether the Christians or the Muslims were right. In time the real facts seem to fade and modern historians came up with theories that would fill in the gaps for the war that raged nearly a millennia ago.
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