[Marxism] Crusades

David Walters dwalters at marxists.org
Sun May 8 16:01:14 MDT 2005

One sees a Ridely Scott film of the battles, not the plot.

I tend to agree with Paul: Christian raids on Arab caravans, 
provocative and opportunist behavior by the Christian Church in 
Jerusalem, great military war machines, and so on.

Islam is portrayed as noble, strong and progressive, Christianity is 
portrayed as I've said above, however, with the 'liberal' character of 
Ballian saying lines that could of been written by anyone giving a 
sermon at the Unitarian church ... that is, liberal Hollywood.

This film seeks to condemn the Crusades as such but resurrect "good 
Christian" behavior in it's stead through the character of Ballian and 
his father (played by Liam Neeson) and even the leper-scarred "King of 
Jerusalem" who seemingly wants to make up for the all past sins of 
Christian's assault on Islam via the Crusades.

The plot is, in my view, is a  take off of the 1961 epic "El Cid", 
about the conquest of Moslem Spain by the forces of the Church. In this 
epic, Charleston Heston, playing El Cid, wins the famous battle of 
Granada (1492) and pledges, like Ballian in "Kingdom of Heaven", to 
stand for a kind of secular rejuvenation of Spain "where Moslems, 
Christians and Jews" can all just get along. The reality is that El 
Cid, et al, destroyed  that from happening by the Catholic armies of 
Ferdinand and Isabel essentially wiping out any Moslem and Jewish 
presence in the Iberian peninsula.

This kind of historical revisionism permeate s"Kingdom of Heaven" while 
at least admitting the real reasons for the Crusades: land, money and 

David Walters

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