Feb 5th, 2003, 08:18 PM
Wish I had seen this earlier. There were a number of Crusades, some more negligable than others, but only one truly successful one, and two partially sucessful.
Chimp: It was actually destroyed twice. The first time by the Babylonians circa 400 BC and then by the Romans in either 70 AD or 70 BC (one of those).
Chimp: Yeah, but as the saying goes, "absolute power corrupts absolutely." I recall seeing a TLC program about the Crusades that said the Pope wanted to solidify his authority in Europe and expand his influence to all Christians. We probably will never know all the reasons.
As I understand it, the first Crusade was motivated primarily by the threat the Moslem's represented against Europe. The war between Byzantine and the Moslems was an odd mix of religious fervitude and imperialistic dynasty building, and lasted for some three hundred years before the Moslems finally triumphed over them. it was at that point the Pope, and many European leaders as well, became aware of how great the threat to their own security truly was. The Pope's only real action to encourage the conflict during the period was to promise that any Moslem slain by European hands would not be considered a sin as they were striking out of their own self defense. However, after proving sucessful in the early stages of the war, they decided to take that as a sign of God's favour and hence decided to go down into the Middle East and liberate Jerusalem - An odd reflection of America's actions of late, but thats neither here nor there.
Chimp: It still boils down to the fact that the raids started after the Crusades began. The Europeans were considered to be foreign invaders.
Indeed, as was the United States when MacArthur pushed the Chinese-supported North Koreans all the way back into lower China in the fifties. The Moslems had been fighting offensively for such an extended period of time, they had not expected for any counter offensive measures - And who could blame them? There had been no previous precedent for such action from the docile Europeans.
Chimp: The fact of the matter is, though, that the Muslims were centuries ahead of Europe. The only reason why European scholars had copies of classical literature to study and imitate during the Renaissance is mostly because Arabs were big fans of Greek and Roman stuff and made hundreds of copies.
Hmmm, this is one of those statements I dislike arguing with because it's rather arbitrary. It was the Turks who invented the idea of true hospitols, 'western' medication and institutionalized places of learning (i.e. schools as we know them now). Arabians offered astrology (which was drastically inferior to some of the knowledge known in lower China at the time) and Algebra (which is only one facet of higher mathematics), and while these are great improvements, what qualifies them as better than what we learned from the Romans (tactics, government, physics), the Greeks (philosophy, art, theory, govenrment) Europeans (science, astronomy, physics) or any other existing culture?