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Thomas Madden

Biography: 

Associate Professor of History and Department Chair, Saint Louis University; Author, A Concise History of the Crusades.

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Recent Commentary

CROSS PURPOSES: The Crusades

with William Hamblin, Thomas Maddenvia Uncommon Knowledge
Monday, April 22, 2002

The Crusades happened almost a thousand years ago—why do they still provoke an argument? Osama bin Laden has used them to attempt to rally the Islamic world to his cause; President Bush has called the war on terrorism a "crusade." But what is the truth about the Crusades? Were they motivated by savage greed and intolerance or by pious idealism? Were they an unprovoked attack by the West on the Islamic world or a reaction to centuries of Islamic incursions? How should we understand the legacy of the Crusades today, in a time of conflict between the West and radical Islamic terrorists?