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Short Synopsis
In God's Battalions, distinguished scholar Rodney Stark reviews the history of the seven major Crusades from 1095 to 1291 and puts forth a controversial argument that the Crusades were a justified war waged against Muslim terror and aggression.

Full Synopsis
In God's Battalions, award-winning author Rodney Stark takes on the long-held view that the Crusades were the first round of European colonialism, conducted for land, loot, and converts by barbarian Christians who victimized the cultivated Muslims. To the contrary, Stark argues that the Crusades were the first military response to unwarranted Muslim terrorist aggression.

Stark reviews the history of the seven major Crusades from 1095 to 1291, demonstrating that the Crusades were precipitated by Islamic provocations, centuries of bloody attempts to colonize the West, and sudden attacks on Christian pilgrims and holy places. Although the Crusades were initiated by a plea from the pope, Stark argues that this had nothing to do with any elaborate design of the Christian world to convert all Muslims to Christianity by force of arms. Given current tensions in the Middle East and terrorist attacks around the world, Stark's views are a thought-provoking contribution to our understanding and are sure to spark debate.

"Drummond gives a splendid reading of Stark's work.... While his vocal touch may be light, his disciplined delivery is strong, clear, and consistently controlled." ---AudioFile

"Filled with fascinating historical glimpses of monks and Templars, priests and pilgrims, kings and contemplatives, Stark pulls it all together and challenges us to reconsider our view of the Crusades." ---Publishers Weekly

"An excitingly readable distillation of the new, revisionist Crusades historiography." ---Booklist Starred Review

"God's Battalions launches a frontal assault on the comfortable myths that scholars have popularized about the crusades. The results are startling." ---Philip Jenkins, author of The Lost History of Christianity
Booklist Review

God's Battalions

The Case for the Crusades

Author Rodney Stark

Narrated by David Drummond

Publication date Dec 21, 2009

Running time 8 hrs

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