BS BBC Wants You To Believe: King Of England Was Muslim

BBC published the following title: KING HENRY II: THE MUSLIM MONARCH OF MEDIEVAL ENGLAND?

In the 12th century, furious with the archbishop of Canterbury, England’s King Henry II threatened to forsake Christianity for Islam.” 

This was obviously not the case. BBC has no sense of humor whatsoever. The absurdity of the BBC’s misleading title is immense, and reflects a total misreading of the mentality of Frankish leaders during the Middle Ages [1]. False news! BBC has little appreciation for the mood of the Franks… Henry was born in Le Mans, Maine, France, part of the “Roman empire”, in the part of the “Roman” empire known as “Francia”.  

The root for this absurdity? Henry II told, obviously in jest, his protege the Pope Alexander, then a refugee in Paris, that he “would sooner accept the errors of Nur al-Din [the Sultan of Aleppo] and become an infidel, than suffer Thomas [Becket] to hold sway in Canterbury Cathedral any longer”.

Henry II Plantagenet With His Daughter In Law Marguerite de France

Henry had raised his friend Thomas Becket high, appointing him to the position of chancellor soon after his accession. He was “considered second only to the king”. Henry had such faith in Thomas to do his bidding that after Theobald, archbishop of Canterbury, died in 1161, he strong-armed a reluctant Becket into taking up the dual position of chancellor -archbishop, despite warnings from Henry’s mother, the “Roman” Empress Matilda, and from Thomas himself. Thomas thought it was ludicrous, protesting that Henry and he knew “for certain that if I am ever promoted to that dignity, I will have to forfeit either the king’s favour or… my service to God Almighty”. That should have been clear, and considering how nasty God is depicted in the Bible, not a good omen…

Indeed, to his horror, Henry discovered that he had installed a Catholic zealot, a soldier now for the eternal Christ instead of his temporal king. Henry was livid when Thomas resigned the chancellorship; king and archbishop soon became locked in a battle for supremacy between church and state… Something not seen since Theodosius I and the bishop of Milan, Ambrose, had a dust up in the Fourth Century. The balance of compromise – whereby the kings gave their archbishops dignity and in turn the archbishops sought to obey their kings’ every desire – was down and out, and that, for a Frank, was intolerable. The very rise of the Frankish civilization in the Fourth Century was propelled by putting back secular political power in command… as in the best times of Rome, but this time including most of Germany, Europe became a secular power again.

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Frankly Cool About Religion:

The Franks were both cautious and relax about religion in general, and Islam in particular. Jokes were allowed. Emperors could employ Muslim bodyguards, and speak Arabic (as Barbarossa did)…. And then go on a Crusade. Even a Catholic fanatic such as Saint Louis toyed with the idea of becoming Sultan of Egypt. 

Being an “apostate” was not a crime under the Franks: the state was agnostics. When Clovis and thousands of his bodyguards  converted to Catholicism, that was not mandatory. 

The Franks had fought with Pope Gregory the Great, in the Sixth Century, when the Pope threatened to burn bishops who allowed secular teaching. Ultimately the Franks obliged all and any religious establishment (including monasteries, synagogues) to teach secularly the entire children population. The Franks sent spies to nascent Islam in the Seventh Century. They viewed the “Sons of Sara” (Saracens) as a Christian heresy, but most dangerous because most militarized. 

Ultimately, the Muslim invasion of Western Europe turned into a bloodbath: invading Muslims killed 25% of catholic Spain… Although their fight was against the ruling Visigoths. Then the Umayyad Caliphate launched three massive invasions of Francia but the “Europeans” (as the Franks called themselves then), rejected them and the caliphate fell (750 CE). In the following four centuries, the Franks led a reconquista of not just  Northern Spain, but Southern Italy and islands such as Sicily. 

One has to understand that, initially, the Franks took over a disintegrating Late Roman empire wrecked, and led, by “Catholic Orthodox” with did, or threatened to, kill everybody who was not considered to be a proper believer… others, emperor Theodosius I had decreed in 381CE,  were “madmen”. 

The Franks, led by king, imperator and consul Clovis, imposed a gentle form of Catholicism not adverse to Pagans or Jews… Or even, it turned out later, Muslims. This tolerant Catholicism ruled until 1026 CE… When the Catholic church bared its fangs again, and started to burn “heretics” again. What happened? Some European plutocrats (self described “nobles”) got the idea, coming from the Late Roman empire, to use Catholicism as a pretext to kill and oppress people. 

Born In Maine, France, Married His Vassal the King’s Wife, Eleanor d’Aquitaine, who had only daughters from the French King, proceeded to give him a son.

Thus Catholicism became more powerful, extremist and fanatical, just after 1000 CE, relaunching the Inquisition. In particular, the marriage of clerics was discouraged. Intellectuals, who had been church employees, technically, because of the three centuries old law pushed vigorously for independence from the church… that’s how the university system was born. And of course a battle started inside Catholicism between pacific tolerance and furious fanaticism. 

The most famous battle was that of the hyper famous philosopher and songwriter Abelard against Saint Bernard. Saint Bernard, more influential than the Pope, pushed for the Second Crusade. Excommunicated, exasperated, Abelard did threaten to go to Spain among the Muslims, claiming they looked more hospitable than fanatic Catholics. His sponsor and protector Peter the Venerable sojourned in Muslim controlled Spain to overview the translation of various Islamist text, including the Qur’an. 

The point of all this was that education, politics, the military, and the law were all independent of religion during the five centuries of Frankish control. Whereas in the Late Roman empire, Catholicism was the state religion, it was not the case under the Franks. In reconquered areas the Muslim had invaded, the Franks’ didn’t force-convert Muslims, nor were they ejected. 

The Franks were not against conversion out of Catholicism, they enabled Catholics to convert to Judaism. And sometimes entire villages did.

This is completely different from Islam. If you convert out of Islam, the holiest texts of Islam tell you, you die. Under Islam, education, politics, military, law are all one under God (“Allah”). Islam learned everything from the Late Roman empire. It’s quite similar, just worse: at least under the Roman empire, nominally, most of the law was independent of religion.   

Confronted to all this, the partisans of Islam bleat that Islam had a “Golden Age”. True, in appearance. But the reality is the exact opposite of what they believe. An immense empire had been conquered in a few years, and those huge populations found themselves mostly free, because of the Muslim conquest. 

The brutality of Muslim conquest (a few years), and its ferocity (killing all arm bearing males in Syria), followed by a hands-off policy (40,000 conquering Muslims left the millions they had conquered alone, as long as they paid taxes and let Muslims rule), paradoxically avoided destruction of cities, and freed the populations from the fanaticism of the precedingly ruling “Catholic” tyrants. So for a while the many millions living in the areas conquered by those 40,000 warriors found themselves to be much more free than before. They were still Christian and Jews. Many thinkers and their books had escaped earlier to Persia, just before the Arabic conquest. The appearance of Islam’s rich intellectual tradition won plenty of admirers in medieval Europe.

But this was secular, not religious admiration. The attitude of all leaders of parts of the Frankish empire was that the church could do its own thing, as long as it respected secular law. 

This is what happened with Henry II Plantagenet. He found himself confronted by a fanatic he had himself appointed, to the objections of many.   

Oppressed by their non-Muslim status, those populations converted to Islam over the next few centuries, and then it became clear, to the Muslim leaders themselves, that Literal Islam was adverse to civilizational progress. So many Muslim leaders took anti-fundamentalist measures. Saladin, for example passed a law rewarding those who interpreted I slam literally with the death penalty… Exactly what Wahhab did, five centuries later, enabling the Saud family to use Islam the way Late Roman emperors used that Catholicism they had invented… And the way early Muslim leaders did. 

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Man was born free. Man thinks best, free. Democracy enables us to be as free as possible while enjoying civilization. All this is impossible following only what is in one 80,000 words book… especially when it’s full of orders to kill all sorts of people, many of them because of how they were born.  

Democracy makes people sufficiently intelligent to understand when people make jokes. But jokes are not tolerated by those who take Islam literally. Apparently the case of the BBC.

Patrice Ayme

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[1]: Some will object to the adjective “Frankish”. How could a king of England be a Frank? Never heard of that! It’s not in Harvard textbooks! Well, until king Philippe Auguste, the king of Francia was “emperor (of the Romans) in his kingdom” and was king of the Franks. There had been complete state continuity since Clovis… Himself Roman Consul, and first king of France…

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4 Responses to “BS BBC Wants You To Believe: King Of England Was Muslim”

  1. Don Kemerling Says:

    “The very rise of the Frankish civilization in the Fourth Century was propelled by putting back secular political power in command… as in the best times of Rome, but this time including most of Germany, Europe became a secular power again.”

    Don Kemerling: I like the story of the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest but that was a different time. I like the idea of the Romans aiming to take slaves and coming back with nobody, not any of the 3 Roman legions that went in.

    Like

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      The 3 legions, with auxiliaries and camp followers were walking back to their winter quarter. They were not expecting any hostilities. Arminius, a commander, misled them. He was a traitor: son of a chief of the Cherusci, he had acquired Roman citizenship and equestrian rank. His ambush prevented Rome to settle Germany, because Augustus and then Tiberius, lost their nerves… They weren’t strategic like Caesar.. Or Germanicus.

      This non-conquest of germany led to considerable instability. Arminius himself was assassinated because it was suspected he wanted to become king. 150 years later the Marcomanni and others would attack Rome ceaselessly.

      The Franks were more clever, more civilized, secular. They became part and creators of Rome, while keeping their independence, and acquiring a Latin written legal system (LEX SALICA). The Germans overran next the Western empire for reasons I will explain in my Rome book. Then the Franks re-established the situation by conquering the north, then called land of Saxons, Angles and Frisians. The franks established the needed short frontier of Europe… Which blocked the Mongols next time they came around…
      https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2013/08/18/secular-egypt-civilized-egypt/

      Like

  2. Mohammed Amin Says:

    Yeh he wanted to be a Muslim you can’t change the history
    Dickhead

    Like

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