There Were Nine Crusades, Bush's Makes The Tenth
Posted: Thursday, December 4, 2003
By: Jim Moore
If ever I had a tough article to write, this is it. Because I will try to explain why I believe America has never won a war, and never will, including the war in Iraq.
Oh, we may win this war (Bush thinks we will) but we will have won nothing because the Enemy we fight will never be conquered, at least in our time.
Yes, we have chalked up many victories since the war with England that made us a nation, but they were victories only in the physical sense. Those wars, like all wars, were secular conflicts, blood and guts battles, if you will. But they have little in common with the perennial state of war human beings have been in since Cain slew Abel, up to the day Joe slew Ahmed in Iraq.
Seeing it from a "human" perspective, I confess I had big doubts about this being a "spiritual" war. It's just too manifest, too evident, to capable of resolution.
However, the evidence that mortal conflicts between human beings repeats itself until it all melds together, has convinced me that we have been fighting, and will continue to fight, only ONE WAR throughout the millenniums, with only the methods of killing "upgraded"; from fangs, to bludgeons, to blades, to bombs, to nuclear annihilation.
I believe I could give you a dozen examples in history of what I mean, but two examples, though a thousand years apart, stand out because of their distinctive relevance: the opposing sides battling not just for territory, riches, or possessions, but for something far more important and contentious: their beliefs.
The first example occurred nearly a thousand years ago.
The Crusades from the 11th to the 14th century were nine long and violent wars between the European Christians and the Muslims, from who they were trying to take back the Holy Land.
Jerusalem had been conquered in the 7th century by the Muslims who held it for four hundred years. During that time, Christians were persecuted and the Holy Sepulcher was despoiled. Byzantine Emperor Alexius appealed to the West for help. And in 1095, the first Crusade began.
We don't have the space, nor is it necessary to describe the many battles that took place between the Crusaders and the Muslims from 1095 to 1271. But several key points must be made here to back my contention that we will have "war without end" as long as human beings are on earth.
The Crusades' starting place of conflict was along the east Mediterranean coast; the same geographic area that has been a source of human tragedy from the time of Christ. However, what began as a war to save the Holy Land apparently got out of hand, and the Crusaders marched and battled across Europe as far north as Scandinavia.
Since it was Christians who went on the Crusades to recover the Holy Land, the papacy had a interest in instigating and supporting the Holy Wars. These included Pope Urban II, Pope Gregory VIII, Pope Innocent III, and others. With church heavyweights urging war against Muslims, the conflict between spiritual and material gain became increasingly intense.
Convinced that God was "on their side" the Crusaders had few qualms about extending their war against Muslims wherever it took them. Thus, once the Holy Land was free of non-Christians, the inclination was to follow through, to fight, and defeat them, wherever they may be. And they did.
So we have (l) a key location from which to wage war, (2) sanction of the church to conduct war, and (3) belief that God is on our side, therefore we cannot fail.
A powerful combination.
It should, because the very same war against the Muslims of Islam that occurred a thousand years ago is happening again today.
It is like a Tenth Crusade---led by President George Bush---with all the ugly ingredients of the nine Crusades before it. Let's make the connection.
1. THE LOCATION.
Iraq is ideal for launching the Tenth Crusade. It is a country surrounded by Iran, Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Syria, This puts it at a strategic point from which the Bush administration can launch strikes against any of the Muslim and other non-Christian nations. Just as the east Mediterranean coast was the central point of the Crusades against the Muslims in the 12th century.
2 THE CHURCH.
Most Christian churches in America have sanctioned the war in Iraq by their silence, or their lack of dissent, even on religious grounds. In fact, Christians, and especially Fundamentalists, acting from their interpretations of the Bible, have joined the neo-conservatives running America's foreign policy, in waging war against Iraq. That gives Bush's Crusade a church "blessing" to wage a Holy War. Just as the church had sanctioned the Holy War a thousand years ago.
3. THE ALMIGHTY.
George Bush has strongly indicated that in a "conversion" experience, God told him that he had been chosen to lead America in a battle to free the world of tyranny. That this freedom was a Christian virtue which did not include Muslims of Islam and other non-Christians, didn't bother Bush. He was, after all, answering the call to Holy War in whatever nations the fight took him. Just as the Crusaders warred against many non-Christian nations in millenniums past.
I don't know whether this is coincidence or simply history repeating itself, but I am convinced of one thing. Since the Beginning, we have been, and always will be, fighting only ONE war and ONE enemy, albeit at different times, with different weapons, and in different places.
Until God ends it.
"Published originally at EtherZone.com : republication allowed with this notice and hyperlink intact."
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