Anywhere you want to go, bring your inflated currency and manufactured aspirations. Find motivation in those dark days of expedition fundraising in the home colony in bartered rumours and mythic narratives, parties on the beach, a summit of Uluru; all possible you’ve been told. Ignore the trail of disruptive distortion you bring to ‘lucky’ hotspots. There’s no problem, you’re bringing in hard cash aren’t you? Yes, a boost to the local economy, a splurge of unthinking assumptions related to trickledown surely follow. The world is open, I can go anywhere, I see no fundamentalists looking on from neighbouring hilltops on hustling, moonlit beaches brimming with vomit. Their conception of this landscape, its people and culture are not afforded thought; money enables us to do it. One may perhaps even embark upon some noble development work for a brief window, a break from hedonism to share some of that all-important western knowledge. Hush now, the elixir of progress is being imparted from the lips of these chosen Caucasian few. There are no limitations, absolute poverty and pleading eyes seeing dollars through white skin to mixers, promenades, suburban chatter and, don’t forget, rubbish collection day- all in a week.
The imperial caravan marches on towards its undisclosed but undoubtedly brilliant end point along the path of progress. A now, for the most part, secularised divine lady providence leads a death march, the world in step behind one, narrowed from a multiplicity, warped European vision of modernity. But out of choice? These nations surely saw that this was the only way, just as the Mesopotamian man unquestioningly left his savage neighbour hunting in the bush to cultivate his sustenance from the earth, so too does the world follow the path of national government, mass consumption, infrastructure obsessions, a purely exploitative approach towards the earth and its resources: the toxic drive of GDP.
We drift from essence; the children of the righteous people, as determined by their lead in the march of progress towards the cliff edge, may, and shall, continue to globe trot as they please. Hedonism will be moderated by selfless philanthropy, with the added prize of digital self-affirming proof. Little guilt will be felt, a drive to change? No. The metropolis welcomes back with its open arms, forget the trueness and visceral nature of what your eyes have witnessed, it doesn’t matter now. The bubble remains inflated, aid continues to flow, status quo as the bedrock of progress- just another aspect of its illusory nature. Come, another destination beckons, we escape the advanced concrete soul vacuum for the savage amongst his quickly vanishing culture, (an end we hasten with our presence) he too has seen the flashing lights.
(A Review of a Civilizational Situation)
The children of the globalised earth can reject an inheritance they made no request for.
Reject the passage into the post-historical state of progress, the journey into the realm of the immortal: an illusion well-spun by those who rarely cared to ask why.
On the far shore and separated from almost all practices previously associated with communal human habitation, an elite few look back at those still in states of savagery, pitifully attempting the climb of the ladder which has an unbridgeable gap in the rungs. A neo-liberal Huxlean distortion, a Brave New World whose fundamental basis is an obscene contradiction with a man-made construct of economic ‘growth’ and conception of progress pitted against the reality of the state of the planet which supports all life. As the first increases indefatigably into the infinite, the latter speeds in an inverse manner towards degradation past the point of offering dignified habitation.
The coca-cola, education pathway to security dream. We will equip you for the market so you too can become a worthy generator of capital to help fuel this vessel. Ease above all else, a human tendency pounced on and enlarged so as to consume and dwarf all others; ease as king, ease as the unquestioned dynamo driving the earth towards a spluttering end.
The dream is sold implicitly and constantly to those in the globalised metropolis. The beating consumptive heart whose tentacles reach out to those providing the exploitable goodness. We here at source are given no real possibility to see but briefly above the wall, beyond the blinkers, to challenge the unbearable weight of the obese rider never seen.
Paying homage to overlooked contributors
Our society has a gift for being able to neatly overlook provenance, whether that be in relation to so called eco-knowledge and ‘green’ attitudes which have been in existence for thousands of years within tribal societies, or in the field of music. This is an attempt to provide some redress and recognition to a consistent strand which has played a massive role in almost all musical genres, bar classical, in the 20th, and what little we’ve had of the 21st century.
This strand is music emanating from the descendants of Africans taken from their home continent through the human trade cargo, as practised on the continent of North America and surrounding areas. African-Americans have played a huge role in the formation of much of what we consider contemporary music. It is an often overlooked tale and one made even more intriguing given the scale of contribution in relation to population size.
There was undoubtedly music-making and rhythms from the start, through the 17th and 18th centuries when the greatest number of people were being brought over to America from West Africa. There is obviously no audio and a very limited historical record of what was being played during this period but there would have been the mixing of a huge range of musical traditions hailing from modern day Senegal, the Gambia, Ghana, Nigeria, Congo, Guinea Bissau and further south along the coast. With the slave trade in full swing new first generation West Africans were bringing with them the contemporary music traditions of their respective countries, adding anew to the mix of traditions established by previous generations of slaves brought over from Africa at earlier dates. Polyrhythms, counter metre and different folk forms brought together in a brutal way but undoubtedly the building blocks from which later developments would rise.
It was in the early to mid-19th century that plantation work music, chants and field songs first gave rise to a new genre; the blues. A pentatonic-based musical juggernaut which emerged from the deep heat and oppression of the Mississippi Delta, the earliest bluesmen and women are lost to us but it is still possible to get a window into that world with some of the early recordings made of bluesmen as part of ethnographic recording projects of the 20’s-40’s (see the work of Alan Lomax).
As blues develops through into the twentieth century it leads on to jazz and another musical world. Around the turn of the century New Orleans begins to feature this new sound which burgeons and gives rise to a whole new raft of genre break-offs and interpretations. This includes its spreading Northwards and into all the big cities in the form of 1940’s and 1950’s bebop.
By the mid part of the last century the African-American musical contribution was already hugely influential and arguably dominated the whole music scene around the western world in the form of jazz and its branch offs, for instance swing and the dancehall music popular in 1940s Britain which was directly inspired by the work of African-Americans players. Their influence permeated almost every musical field and the rhythms and energy provided proved irresistible to listeners from across the world, there was something unique in these musical forms’ ability to get a hold of listeners, engaging and pulling them closer. To see this power in action, one only need go back to performances by key messengers in venues across Europe, for instance in the footage of Ray Charles playing in 1960’s Antibes or Nina Simone in London during the same period, the power and energy of the music and its effect on European listeners is visible, audiences otherwise used to the reserved social norms of the day struggling to contain their bodily reaction to these new sounds.
As the 1960’s approached and with the brewing of a new cultural movement, the blues was about to get the spotlight in the same way jazz had been doing for the past half century. As a new generation grew up in the 50’s many now had access to blues recordings, and as the decade passed on a new interpretation of that same music was added to this with the sounds now coming from Elvis. This blues-come rock and roll led directly into the 60’s and a whole raft of groups, genre of music and arguably a cultural movement which could not have been more directly inspired by the music of bluesmen who had been playing down in the delta through the 20’s,30’s and 40’s. This direct branch off, which can include Fleetwood Mac with Peter Green, The Yardbirds, The Rolling Stones (whose Keith Richards speaks of being “blessed” by the blues), the Who, Jefferson Airplane, Zeppelin and many others led on to the more contemporary stories and all the genre break offs we know of, and often deem as variety today, including Punk, Prog-rock and so on. These may not have directly emanated from African-American musicians as blues, jazz, soul, funk and others did but they were brought into existence only through the work of those figures.
Travelling then into the 1980’s there is the advent of Hip Hop which can be seen as a continuation of this hugely creative ethnic narrative with many shared elements with bebop and Parker’s bouncy licks. Emerging from New York and spreading quickly, Hip Hop possessed a power and potential social and political potency which it gained through the combination of thoughts and poetry with sampled beats. Almost all these early samples were jazz-based with new drum loops added on top. An intoxicating combination of lyricism with music; the marriage of thoughts and ideas with the headiness of jazz (a marriage which, interestingly, was something Kerouac and his beat compatriots had begun to delve into as well back in the 1950’s). Hip Hop leads on then to Jungle, the beginnings of electronic dance music and what now forms the backbone of much of our contemporary music scene, the branch offs from drum and bass and dubstep which also increasingly finds its place in the formulaic pop hits of today, if through nothing else via the practice of sampling as a backbone of the music.
The intention here is not to categorise or divide music along racial lines but rather to recognise this huge wealth of creativity and soul which has given so much. To ignore the role African-American, and going back further, essentially African rhythms, beats, feels, syncopation and so much more has played in the music we love is to allow another bluesman to die in obscurity and poverty in a delta shack whilst those, such as the Stones, who drew their fame and success directly from the blues get on the tour bus again.
It seems that in fact all of the music of the 20th century, minus classical, has been brought about in large part through the influence of Africa, as expressed through those from that continent forcibly relocated in the US. A story of brutality which in a strange turn of events gave rise to some of the most creative and influential musical fields of our times. Blues, Jazz and all its later advents such as soul and funk stand towering over our musical landscape, alongside many of us still today. Exactly how an ethnic group that currently make up less than 14% of the American population have had such a huge impact on the field of music as a whole is complex. I would argue it is a story of hope and also inspiration that from some of the greatest oppression done to any peoples in recent times they gave the world some of the most potent and rich musical genres, styles and sounds. Blind Lemon Jefferson, Robert Johnson, Charlie Patton, B.B King, Howlin’ Wolf to Hendrix, Ray Charles, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, Aretha Franklin, James Brown and Etta James. The list is long and can be suited to almost any musical taste.
In light of the huge contribution it seems it is right to pay homage and recognise this extraordinary cultural thread, a thread with many faces but essentially the same foundations; a soul jarring ability to connect with the self and cause an emotional reaction. To see this one only need go back to some grainy Skip James recording or hear one of Parker’s disciples blasting out a heady bop lick with compelling, jittery urgency.
Jazz, Kerouac, Hip Hop and Dylan in the same breath. Only with recognition can come appropriate action, which in this case could be a number of things including a rebalancing of how we judge the value or worth of cultures or continents, to imagine a day when the music an ethnic group has gifted the world is considered as equally important to the GDP or wealth this or that country is able to generate. In this respect Africa truly is a land of superior wealth.
In the wake of the Paris negotiations last month there certainly are many positives which can be drawn from the debate. Levels of public interest in climate change and the recognition from politicians across the globe of the need to address the issue is undoubtedly higher than ever before. The COP21 talks will almost certainly galvanise more action than any of its predecessors, especially if agreement is maintained on a tougher target of 1.5 degree maximum warming levels over the previously discussed 2 degree rise. However, it is clear that the biggest challenge remains how to translate this increased political will, increased public engagement and increased pressure from campaigning organisations into tangible action on the ground within a relatively short space of time, with most estimates agreeing on the need for a near complete transition to renewables within 50-70 years.
Herein it seems lies the crucial problem which is the way in which the debate is presented and the actions of vested interests on attempts to enact significant changes to our current and unsustainable energy model. This battle for the narrative around climate change and the role of key vested interests in the debate via the PR and lobbying firms which they employ could well be the last and most challenging sticking point in any effort to ensure a sustainable future for the planet.
Role of corporate interests in the steering of the climate change narrative
Different techniques are used by some of the key polluting corporations and industries to achieve their financial aims. These include the blocking of climate action by directly funding disinformation and climate denial campaigns (Exxon Mobil with the help of their PR firm Edelman for example) or in the way in which companies and consortiums seek to present themselves as part of the solution to the climate change issue whilst continuing to carry out heavily polluting activities. This is achieved in a number of ways, but notably in recent years can be seen in the promotion of discredited and ineffective approaches such as Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) and the presentation of natural gas as a ‘bridge’ or ‘clean’ fuel. By pumping millions into lobbying in these areas and ignoring, in relation to natural gas for instance, how aggressive extraction methods often bring it up to the same level as coal in terms of pollution, companies are able to re-position themselves as agents of the change which, behind closed doors, so many of them oppose.
The revolving door between policy-making and PR firms means that companies like ExxonMobil and Chevron are able to bring to bear great leverage on policy-making which could be seen at the Copenhagen climate summit of 2009 with heavy lobbying by the International Chamber of Commerce and others who were pushing for a rejection of binding carbon reduction targets and an emphasis instead on CCS and the addressing of climate change issues through market based mechanisms.
The wider context and public engagement with climate change
Whilst specific lobbying techniques on the ground may have changed, the wider strategy is one which we have seen time and again over the years, most notably in relation to the Tobacco lobby and its attempts over a period of many years to delay and derail attempts at increased regulation. The stakes now are even higher and the profits at risk far greater so it is understandable that the situation has become a veritable minefield of complexities. There is undoubtedly also increased subtlety in the lobbying approach as compared to the days of the tobacco battles, especially in Europe where outright climate denial gains limited traction (the same cannot be said for the U.S here). The backroom lobbying of policy makers, the movement of talent between the fields of policy into PR as well as broader attempts to shape and influence the public narrative around climate change are all key tools in the armoury of organisations attempting to put brakes on the process of change and transition to renewables.
Moving forwards it seems a separation between lobbyists and policy makers is key and, at a minimum, we need publicly available information on which firms are paying which PR companies to lobby on their behalf. In the meantime though it seems public awareness is crucial. As outlined in an article earlier this week by Charles Donovan and Christopher Corbishley on this blog, in a lot of places renewable energy is already cheaper than fossil fuels and ready for highly effective deployment. Whether in regards to wind or solar PV there have been huge advances made. This, however, flies in the face of the often-heard public narrative of the ‘gap’ which remains in terms of cost and efficiency of renewables as compared to fossil fuels. This is just one example of how the public narrative needs to be re-shaped around the facts rather than the narrative peddled by those with a huge financial stake in the continuation of our current fossil fuel-based energy model. If more businesses both in the UK and across the world were made aware of the financial gains available through a transition from fossil fuels to renewables rather than the moral argument in isolation then we could start to see the real change needed on the ground. Here also it will be crucial for government involvement in the form of both public awareness and information dissemination but also schemes which support businesses transitioning to renewables.
With this intelligent mix of increased public awareness on climate change issues and solutions available on the ground locally in tandem with increased transparency on the activities of firms lobbying on behalf of key polluters there may be time yet to realise the change necessary to keep warming levels below a runaway level. One thing is for certain though, that is whilst negotiations such as those currently taking place in Paris are crucial to setting the overall framework and agreements between nations it is just the start of the necessary action on the ground by national government and a whole range of educational and civil society organisations.
A piece I wrote in 2015 subsequently published with Public Pressure Magazine:
I knew nothing about Sun Ra until some time last year when I was played a hip hop album called ‘Cosmic Compositions Vol.3’ dedicated to him and his work. A hazy attic in Leeds provided the backdrop to the overdue introduction and it is one I remain thankful for to this day. It reminds me of hip hop’s status as a unique and unrivalled musical art form in the way it has the ability to pick up old threads and musical lineages and, through sampling work or a dedication, draw attention to and revive interest in an artist or genre possibly overlooked by the current generation. Be it the jazz and funk of Mr Brown in the earliest ‘80’s sampling or this album and the focus on Sun Ra, one can see time and again over the years contemporary hip hop artists picking up and featuring music from previous eras. The primary purpose of this is to make great sounds but often also serves as a form of musical education for listeners.
Born Herman Blount in Alabama 1914, Sun Ra was a prolific musician, composer, pianist, poet and philosopher. Grounded in jazz and growing up with the sounds of Ellington and Fats Waller, a mystical experience in the late 1930s in which he believed himself to have visited Saturn left him convinced of his duty to, as instructed, speak universally through his music. Remaining heavily under-represented during his lifetime, despite his near constant presence as band leader with his ‘Arkestra’ from 1950 to his death in 1993, he was an individual who seemed to insist on looking outwards for inspiration, treating his music as a timeless universal space outside of the confines of past, present or future and a space in which he could represent and turn others towards his cosmic philosophies and approach to life.
A key pioneer of Afro-Futurism and a consistent promoter of peace and harmony on a planet he claimed to be only a visitor on, his musical back catalogue is large. He also delivered many lectures, including a series at Berkeley in the early 1970s, which are a great insight into his worldview and beliefs. For those interested in Jazz, Sun Ra is a master of a whole range of styles and approaches from swing to bepob and freejazz and is a great proponent of the genre.
The album, dedicated to the intriguing figure, is the third volume in the ‘Cosmic Compositions’ series by the New Zealand-run project. Featuring a wide range of producers and dominated by a jazzy feel with laid back and often cut up beat cycles it also showcases wide ranging sampling from Nas’ Illmatic in Pianosea to sections from interviews with Sun Ra. It is a piece of work which in part acknowledges a continuous thread in African-American music running from plantation blues through to early jazz, swing, soul right on to hip hop and, consequently, the majority of electronic music consumed today which relies on techniques of sampling and a certain mind-set pioneered by early hip hop.
Sun Ra represents a proud figure within this narrative, standing up and taking ownership of this heritage but also looking to it futuristically as a means to raise people up out of temporality and oppression and communicate on a universal level. He is someone who seems to stand slightly removed and aloof from the 20th century’s musical discourse and a figure who, the more you look into, the more fascinated you become.
“In fact I would say musicians are supposed to be God’s harmony department, but most of the time they’re in discord and they’re in disharmony and they become commercial matter, but actually music is what’s supposed to keep people inspired and keep them seeing this invisible beauty of the mind and spirit. That’s what music is for.”
The full Cosmic Compositions album can be found here:
As James Blake’s touring guitarist he is not that widely known as an artist in his own right, but this will unlikely remain the case. He is someone who clearly puts a great deal of time into his production process, sampling methods and choices. One of the ways in which Airhead stands out is his understanding of spacing, as is the case with his co-musician Blake. There is no heady insistence on the over-layering of sounds or reliance on a catchy, vacuum-packed beat, instead he is comfortable pushing forward a new and alternative sound, which in respect to a song such as ‘Azure Race’, may see us forwards into future decades of electronic music.
Whilst much of the industry insists on turning lead into brightly polished lead, it is artists such as Airhead who undertake the full alchemical process; a painstaking and often under-represented venture in music production, yet one which will undoubtedly grow in importance as the dominant musical discourse continues to homogenise and bring more listeners into its fold, numbing us to what it means to put out something purely through passion rather than the pursuit of capital.
All in all this is a really enjoyable, ethereal album and one which marks out Rob McAndrews as an artist to watch for the future. In the meantime, with this next song ‘Autumn’, you can see winter in with nostalgic style.
Holy war is a concept found in both Christianity and Islam and has made its impact on the history of both religions as well as the identity of believers. It has played a significant role in the interactions between the two faiths, determining relations of the past and present. In this piece a comparative analysis will be undertaken contrasting the notions of crusade and jihad in support of the thesis that, fundamentally, there is more of a precedent for holy war in Islam than Christianity. Less scriptural alteration is needed in Islam to implement, with moral and religious backing, holy war. An exploration of the early development of the concept in both religions will be carried out in an attempt to explain why it sits more comfortably in the Islamic faith as well an exploration of both religions’ reliance on the depersonalising sociological concept of the Other in enacting religious violence. Also under examination will be the idea of holy war as a somewhat inorganic phenomenon, controlled and directed from the centre, for example by an institutional power structure such as the papacy. In aid of this argument, direct comparison will be made between the actions of the Umayyad Caliphate, under whom jihadist expansionism was closely tied to imperial ambition, and those of Pope Urban II in the mobilisation of the first crusade. Running through this piece will be the fundamental assertion of the malleability of the concept and the way it is interpreted and re-forged to suit the needs of specific times and societies.
The concept of holy war has a far stronger scriptural basis in Islam than in Christianity. From its earliest decades following Mohammed’s revelation in 610 C.E, war and militant expansion played an important part in the newly burgeoning faith. It is thought Mohammed participated in, or had control over, at least eighty campaigns. Unlike Christianity’s predominantly mission-led approach, Islam was almost immediately coupled with the sword. Following the prophet and his follower’s hijra to Medina, campaigns were embarked upon not only against old tribal enemies such as the Quraysh of Mecca but also upon polytheistic peoples in the area surrounding Medina, the new faith’s stronghold. Territorial expansion coupled with the expansion of the faith took place at a rapid pace, spreading, within decades, throughout the Arabian Peninsula and the Quran reflects this early militancy in its numerous references to Jihad. Many of the references concern an internal spiritual mission, often referred to as “greater jihad”, others to the maintenance of the integrity of the religious community but many also to physical jihad in the field of battle against internal dissenters, polytheists and people of the book.Attention is given to the glorious deeds of the early Muslim community in battle with the Quran demanding that the actions of these martyrs not be forgotten. This is strikingly different to the image of the early pacifist Christian martyrs almost all of whom received death at the hands of a persecuting majority whilst attempting to spread the faith through mission work.
ISIL fighters in Raqqa Syria, 2014
As demonstrated above there was a strong scriptural precedent for holy war in Islam, both defensive and aggressive, as well as an early tradition of warfare in the name of the faith, as exemplified by prophet come warrior Mohammed, which was engrained in the identity, and transmitted down through, the early Muslim community. Christianity conversely has almost no scriptural basis for violence of any sort. Taking the New Testament as the central text, no verses can be found instructing a defensive or aggressive war in the name of faith; in fact this concept is antithetical to Christ’s message of peace and love. The rejection of violence is such a central tenet of Christ’s teaching that it seems perverse that holy war could ever have found a place in Christianity;
“Put your sword back into its place; for all those who take up the sword shall perish by the sword” 
However we know that holy war did indeed find its place in the form of Christianity disseminated by the Roman Catholic Church, this was only able to occur through large scale scriptural perversion, or imaginative interpretation as some may see it. This doctrinal alteration and gradual emergence of militarism in Christianity occurred over a long period of time and could quite easily form the basis of a study in itself. It was the entwining of Christianity and imperial power that marked the start of this change with Constantine’s conversion and Rome’s adoption of it as state religion. Carl Erdmann supports this idea of emerging militancy in his work The origin of the idea of crusadeciting a number of steps taken by the new state church in the legitimation of violence, including the declaration of military service as unobjectionable and a more general alignment between the church’s “ethical demands and liturgical prayers with the military functions of the state”. Christianity henceforth became tied to institutional centralised power and as a result the temporal aims of these institutions.
Herein emerges a similarity between the history of holy war in the two religions; that is the entwining of the concept with the imperial aims of centralised power. The actions of the Umayyad dynasty and those of the Papacy in relation to the first crusade illustrate this relationship. Following the last of the rightly guided Caliphs in 661 C.E the Umayyad Dynasty assumed control of a now hugely powerful Islamic Caliphate. Under the dynasty expansion was taken to new levels with the whole of North Africa and the Iberian Peninsula brought under Islamic control as well as expansion eastwards into Asia. Under their rule (661-750 C.E) extensive work was carried out on the development of a comprehensive doctrine of jihad. Michael Bonner argues that the body of work composed by Umayyad Caliphs, judges and governors would form the basis of the Islamic rule of war, which would later be ascribed to “more acceptably Islamic sources, such as the companions of the prophet”. It is almost impossible to try and assess how much of the Umayyad’s actions were religiously or temporally motivated, however, what is certain is that the glory of a large empire was a great prize for the dynasty. From the centre, figures such as al-Awza’i developed a body of work concerning the obligation for Muslims to participate in physical jihad interpreting and clarifying Quranic content which was used suit the aims of the empire (perpetual expansion). Mujahedeen in this period can, to some extent, be seen as pawns whose religiosity was exploited to further the aims of rulers. The religious necessity of expanding the “dar al-islam” was obviously emphasised as enlarging the empire of a self-interested Caliph would not have been as appealing a recruitment drive.
Span of Umayyad Caliphate’s Territory
The mobilisation of the first crusade by Pope Urban II can also be seen as the manipulation by a central power of the religiosity of subject peoples. Given that there was no scriptural basis for holy war in Christianity one has to ask what the temporal aims were in motivating the papacy to mobilise such a large movement. One of these aims was undoubtedly bringing back into the fold the schismatic Eastern Church as well as creating an outlet for Christian violence. An important difference however was that the Umayyad Caliphate could espouse their interpretation of an existing message from the Quran whilst the Pope had to create a whole new raft of theology to enact mobilisation. Amongst other things he personally granted heaven to those who died on crusade through the power invested in him by God and presented a somewhat “debased” form of the idea of Christian love to fit the framework of a religious war talking of crusading as an act of Christian charity. The involvement of this power structure was fundamental to the first crusade and is illustrative of the more inorganic nature of Christian holy war.
A similarity which unites both religions’ notions of holy war is the base level reliance on the depersonalising sociological concept of the other. Despite all the religious overtones, a key pre-requisite for any holy war is a simplistic separation between the good, fighting for God, and infidels or heathens which they face. This dehumanisation is necessary for the conduct of most conflict yet it is especially clear in the context of religious war. The Quran, in reference to jihad, makes generalised allusions throughout to infidels, idolaters and kuffar,whilst the Pope’s language recorded, to a disputed degree of accuracy, at the Council of Clermont is also full of what, in modern terms, may be termed hate speech. In the Fulcher of Chartres account he is reported to have said: “O what a disgrace if such a despised and base race, which worships demons, should conquer a people which has the faith of omnipotent God”. This unquestioning confidence in the superiority of one’s own religious clan played an important role in the interactions between the two faiths and remains relevant in the conflicts which continue to be carried out in the name of God in the Middle East today.
In conclusion holy war as a concept has played a central role in the relationship between the two faiths and the development of the identity of believers. As stated at the outset, holy war sits far more comfortably in the Islamic faith and in fact played a crucial role in its development and expansion. The early entwining of Islam and militancy, combined with the ample scriptural support for it, has created a durable and lasting concept which continues to hold great relevance today. To align Christianity with the concept of holy war however required far greater scriptural alteration and the involvement of power structures. The veil of religion only just disguised the temporal and imperial aims of the Christian crusades and, in large part due to the lack of scriptural support for the notion, it has not survived the test of time to the extent that jihad has.
 D. Cook, “Quran and Conquest” (2005) p.6
 Ibid, p.5
 Jihad taken to mean “struggle”
 M. Bonner, Jihad in Islamic History: Doctrines and Practice (2006, New Jersey) p.155
 Quran 4:74, “So let those fight in the cause of Allah who sell the life of this world for the Hereafter”
 Quran 8:16, “whoever turns his back on that day.. incurs Allah’s wrath and his refuge is Hell”
 Matthew 26:52
 And later protestant church in the wars of religion yet they do not form a part of this exploration
 C. Erdmann, The origin of the idea of crusade (Princeton Uni. Press, 1977) p.5
 H. Zawati, Is Jihad a just war? War peace and human rights under Islamic and public international law (New York, 2001) p.78
 M. Bonner, Jihad in Islamic History, p.122
 R. Arzina, Early Shia thought: the teachings of Imam Muḥammad al-Baqir (London, 2000), p.101
 Sphere of Islam, J. T. Johnson, The holy war idea in Western and Islamic traditions (Pennsylvania, 2005), p.65
 J. Smith, “Crusading as an act of love”, History, 65 (1980) p.191
 M. Bull, “Lay enthusiasm for the First Crusade”, History, 78 (1953) p.361
 Quran 9:1, 9:3, 9:5 : “Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them”
 Fulcher of Chartres from O. Thatcher and E. McNeal, A Source Book for Medieval History (New York, 1905) p.382