"And lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades..., people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ."What that statement ignores is the amount of violence and killing that took place against Christians at that time and which necessitated the Crusades.
To a fault, Christianity grew out of Christ's teachings on peace and pacifism.
They believed in the Ten Commandments and, in particular, the one that said: "Thou Shalt Not Kill". Otherwise, to do so, would be a mortal sin whereby your soul would be dead to God and you would be unable to reach heaven. They also lived by the tenants of the eight Beatitudes as spoken by Christ in his famous Sermon on the Mount. Essentially, in those Beatitudes, Christ taught pacifism by teaching that if you were meek, merciful, pure in heart, a peacemaker, or are persecuted for righteous sake, you will be rewarded both on earth and welcomed into heaven. Thus, with these words the concept of martyrdom was created whereby dying for your religion, without resistance, would deliver your soul to heaven. It was these beliefs in the very violent times during the Roman Empire that gave many people hope; and, as a result, the religion flourished.
But, then came the 7th Century and the founding of Islam. Following that, there were Muslim Conquests where Christians (and pagans and Jews) were forced to convert to Islam or be killed, enslaved, or subjugated by taxation. Unlike Christianity, the Koran taught that any non-believers of Islam (infidels) should be slain. For example, verse 8:65 of the Koran says this about the infidels: "O Prophet! Exhort the believers to fight. If there are 20 steadfast men among you, they shall vanquish 200; and if there are a hundred, they shall rout a thousand unbelievers, for they are devoid of understanding." The Prophet Mohammed, himself, was a Military commander in the last 10 years of his life to help increase conversions and obedience to Allah through the Islamic faith.
By 1095, Pope Urban II knew that if he didn't act, the entirety of Christianity could be eradicated by advancing Muslim hoards that were killing and subjugating Christians throughout the former Byzantine and Roman Empires. For that reason he wrote this text within a broader encyclical which told his Bishops that it was all right to kill in the name of Christ:
I, or rather the Lord, beseech you as Christ's heralds to publish this everywhere and to perse all people of whatever rank, foot-soldiers and knights, poor and rich, to carry aid promptly to those Christians and to destroy that vile race from the lands of our friends. I say this to those who are present, it is meant also for those who are absent. Moreover, Christ commands it.So, the Crusades were born out of necessity against a religion that was killing Jews and Christians in the name of Allah. A fact that the President doesn't seem to understand.
By the way. It is interesting that the Pope used the word "destroy" in his letter to the Bishops. Obama used the very same word in defining his actions against ISIS. So, in a way Obama is leading his very own crusades against Muslim radicals in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, etc.
KORAN commands to kill infidels: http://www.wvinter.net/~haught/Koran.html
The Quran's Verses of Violence: http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/quran/023-violence.htm
Muslim Conquests: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim_conquests
Pope Urban II: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Urban_II
Obama: ISIS must be destroyed, there will be no negotiations: http://rt.com/usa/190324-obama-unga-isis-destroy/