Title page for ETD etd-09162008-161844

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Cha, Myoung-Woon
Email cmwoil@hanmail.net
URN etd-09162008-161844
Document Title The Crusades, their influence and their relevance for today
Degree MA(Theology)
Department Church History and Church Polity
Advisor Name Title
Prof J W Hofmeyr Supervisor
  • Byzantine Empire
  • Jerusalem
  • influence
  • Crusades
Date 2007-04-20
Availability unrestricted

On Tuesday, 27 November 1095, at the Council of Clermont, Pope Urban II made an appeal for a military expedition to fight for brethren in the Byzantine Empire and to liberate Jerusalem. The appeal, which was taken up was very successful. The result of the First Crusade was that the Latin States of the East were born: the county of Antioch, the county of Edessa, the county of Tripoli and the kingdom of Jerusalem.

As time went by, the Crusades to the Holy Land became weakened. Finally, on 28th, May 1291, the remainder of the Holy Land (Acre) fell into Mamluk hands. In the period of the Crusades, the Crusade affected two great effects to the outside Western world. First, in April 1204, the Fourth Crusaders occupied Constantinople, which was the heart of the Byzantine Empire. It was the greatest sacking of Byzantine. Second, Saladin the most famous of Muslim heroes appeared on the scene. He recaptured Jerusalem (2 October 1187) and roused the sprit of jihad. At the present time, many leaders of Islam countries and terrorists groups regard themselves as successors of Saladin.

On September 11, 2001, a group of 19 Muslim Arab terrorists hijacked four passenger planes en route across the United States. The immediate death toll was estimated at about three thousand civilians.

After the attack of September 11, President Bush labelled the attacks as ‘acts of war’ and declared war on terrorism. On 29 January 2002, President Bush said that America would act against an ‘Axis of Evil’ formed by Iran, Iraq and North Korea. He accused these countries of developing weapons of mass destruction.

On 20 March 2003, U.S. troops and allied troops launched an invasion on Iraq without the sanction of the UN Security Council. Finally, on May 1, 2003, Bush declared his victory and announced the end of a “major combat operation” in Iraq.

Bush adduced three reasons for attacking Iraq. First, Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction. Second, the Iraqi government had persistently violated human rights, and routinely used torture and carried out summary executions. Third, the regime of Saddam Hussein was implicated in transnational terrorism and, specifically, in the attacks of September 11. I tentatively conclude that Bush lacked the necessary evidence, but he, nevertheless, attacked Iraq.

In the period of the Crusades or even nowadays, it is difficult to keep the peace between Islam and Christianity. Our duty is not to conquer Islam by war but to preach the Gospel in peaceful ways, and then it is necessary for us to learn peaceful coexistence.

© University of Pretoria 2006

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