Jerusalem for Islam or for Christianity
Saladin, the Sultan of Egypt and Syria reclaimed Jerusalem for Islam. In response, Pope Gregory VIII calls for the holy war to reclaim Jerusalem for Christianity. In turn, three esteemed European kings respond to his call, the most significant member of the Crusade being Richard I of England as their leader. The Crusaders head for Jerusalem, the Muslims preparing to defend their claim. As the Crusade continues to drag on, the Crusaders and Muslims grow to be friendly and willing to compromise with one another in the hostile environment. Later, the Crusade is abruptly ended as Richard I and Saladin sign a peace treaty. How was such a long stretching war abruptly ended suddenly with no decisive victory? The Third Crusade remained an indecisive victory due to Saladin’s incredible leadership for the Muslims, his battle tactics, the Crusader’s leadership from Richard I, their impressive resilience as well as their tenaciousness, and both sides’ open mindedness to create a truce with each other including their constant gallantry.
During the Third Crusade, the Muslims had many strengths in leadership and combative advantages, yet, throughout the Crusade, they suffered from several shortcomings. The most vital aspect of the Muslims’ success resulted from their ultimate leader, Saladin, the Sultan of the Ayyubid Dynasty which he also founded and was an Egypt-central dynasty that controlled many areas of the middle east. Saladin’s upbringing resulted in his development as a extremely powerful ruler, surrounded by favorable influences, and gaining several favorable attributes in leadership. He was raised by his father as well as two other men, Shirkuh and Nur al-Din. There is very little information about Saladin’s childhood, but a historian inferred, “If his father provided an example of good behavior, Saladin’s two mentors were his hard-fighting uncle Shirkuh and Nur al-Din, ruler of Aleppo and Mosul, anti-Crusader, would-be unifier of Islam, Saladin’s master and employer, the man who gave him the chance to seize power in Egypt. Without these two- the one a campaigner, the other a ruler – Saladin might have remained insignificant.”
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