Name Instructor Course Date Salah Aldin (capture of Jerusalem) The importance of Jerusalem to the Islamic World Jerusalem is referred to as the Al-Quds in Arabic. It is perhaps the only city globally that is regarded spiritually and historically to Christians, Jews, and Muslims…
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The two most significant sites for Muslims in Jerusalem are Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock, which like the Ka’ba’ is based over a sacred stone. Above all, it is regarded as the third-holiest city in the Muslim perspective, after Mecca and Medina. Further, is it perceived that verse 44 of chapter 43 of the Koran was revealed in the city of Jerusalem: “Ask those of our messengers we went before thee-Have we appointed apart from the All-Merciful, gods to be served?” It is therefore the hope of all Muslims that this holy City will be restored to a peaceful land. How Salah Aldin took back Jerusalem In 1099, Jerusalem was dominated by the Christians in the First Crusade. In the year 1095, Pope Urban VII delivered an influential speech at the Council of Clermont following the Byzantines request for him to provide a military help against the growing threatening Seljuk Turks. This gave the Pope a chance to complete two objectives; to stop the European princes and kings from conflicting themselves and to reunite the Western and Eastern empires of Rome. Pope Urban requested for a “Truce of God” between the rulers of Europe and begged them to restore the holy land from Muslims. It was from this point that the first Crusaders started the extensive trip to the East. They crossed strange lands they knew little about; they also had no idea of the military powers and flaws of the cities and communities they came across. On their arrival in Jerusalem in 1099, they were able to capture the prominent city from the Muslims. The Christians utilized cruel techniques to overpower the Muslims during this so called “Holy War.” Christians controlled Jerusalem for 89 years, till when a brilliant Egyptian King named Salah-al-Din took it back forcibly in1187 (Ali, 1999). During the capture, Saladin was so determined to deliver Jerusalem from the Christian influence. Unlike the Crusaders, Saladin never used the brutal ways on the Inhabitants. He instead showed mercy and restraint upon the Crusaders; he permitted them to stay or leave harmless, as they did wished. Most chose to leave, but left with masses of golden ornaments and church treasures, Saladin never minded so that he could avoid harming them. He even assigned his army to escort them safely to Tyre. On of the Chroniclers commented on Saladin’s humane treatment saying, “Who could not endure the suffering of the refugees, ordered their squires to dismount and set aged Christians upon their steeds. Some of them even carried Christian children in their arms."(Maalouf 1989). Most people complained of Saladin’s techniques, lamenting that the Muslim had no leader like Saladin and they should be grateful to him for setting up the Crusader protection of Tyre. However, this was just his character and wisdom. When his secretaries criticized about his compassion in the taking back of Jerusalem, Saladin said to them, “we will allow it to be a victory that the world shall remember for all time.”According to Maaalouf, as compared to European conquest of the city, Saladin’s capture of Jerusalem was far more elegant and less bloody. The mosques had been ransacked and destroyed by the Christians. However, Saladin conserved and refurnished the churches as well as allowing the Byzantine patriarch to rule them directly. They prayed freely in their holy places, and Saladin handed over Christian
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