The Vikings also had their own 9-11, as Cherry explains.
The Vikings were also the world’s first (and arguably most successful) terrorists. They would appear quietly out of nowhere and often someplace that was undefended…a soft target. The attack on the Lindisfame monastery in 793 is not only an act of overt terrorism, but accepted by most as the start of the Viking age. They did what they did in Odin’s name, and they believe with his blessing. That is not much different then Allah smiling on his followers for killing the helpless in his name.
Lindisfarne was the home of the famed monk Saint Aiden, a center for evangelization throughout northern Europe, and known for an illustrated copy of the Gospels of Mathew, Mark, Luke and John known as the Lindisfarne Gospels. When Thomas Cahill wrote How the Irish Saved Civilization, he had in mind people like the Lindisfarne monks.
To the Vikings, followers of Odin, the Lindisfarne Monastery was as major a symbol of Christianity as the World Trade Center was a symbol of the capitalist West to certain followers of Allah in 2001. And there was little booty to be gained from the raid, which was conducted in as bloody a way as possible and sent shudders through Christendom. The scholar Alcuin wrote, “The heathens poured out the blood of saints around the altar, and trampled on the bodies of saints in the temple of God, like dung in the streets.”
The followers of Odin did not start their war on Christianity with the attack on Lindisfarne, as Cherry explains.
Odin and Allah both seemed to have a major problem with Christians. Before the Viking age of the Norse started with the attack on the Lindisfame Monastery, the pagan followers of Odin persecuted and purged Norway of Christians. This started in late 772 or early 773 AD. The Quran (as the inspired word of Allah) also shows an intolerance for Christians and Jews.
About this time I can hear someone who had the same history teacher as Barack Obama and Bill Clinton yelling, “Hey! What about the Crusades?”
Look, like Odin, Allah made his first appearance somewhere around the 7th century. Conversion was more by force and violence than by rhetoric. While Obama seems to adopt the Third World position that Islam is the organic and legitimate religion of Arab regions, it’s worth remembering that Alexandria, the great city of Egypt, at one time was a central city of early Christianity.
So, while the Crusades, whatever their wisdom or excesses, took on the mission of “liberating the Holy Land,” to act as though it was some imperialistically religious, unprovoked attack is to pretend Normandy was an act of aggression against a peaceful country.