Count Dracula may not have been such a bad guy after all, just misunderstood
The historical inspiration for Dracula, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Vlad Tepes or Vlad III Dracula, was a 15th-century prince of Wallachia, located in modern-day Romania. His Christian faith led him to defend Christendom from invading hordes of Islamic jihadists, according to Raymond Ibrahim, author and expert in Islamic history and doctrine.
In writing his famous novel, Bram Stoker sought to lend an “aura of historic legitimacy by connecting it to real people and events,” author Raymond Ibrahim says. “For his novel’s namesake, he found a real Romanian, the man under question, Vlad III Dracula.”
Although none of the historical records Stoker used as inspiration for the character referenced any of the familiar Dracula iconography of crucifixes as a weakness, vampire bats and coffin beds, Ibrahim said some sources did portray him as a sadist who tortured and impaled his victims.
Ibrahim, author of “Defenders of the West: The Christian Heroes Who Stood Against Islam,” doesn’t deny that Vlad was both vicious and an Impaler of his enemies. But he contends most of those stories fail to acknowledge an important historical context.
As a young teen, Vlad III was taken hostage by the Ottoman Turks and was mentally, systematically raped and beaten along with his brother. Through the experience, his younger brother, Radu, was “slowly transformed into Sultan Muhammad II’s personal catamite,” a boy forced to submit to a sexual relationship with a man. It was during this time that Vlad also saw the Turks impaling their enemies, a practice which, upon returning to his homeland of Wallachia, he soon adopted as his own.
And though this might sound inhumane by contemporary standards, Ibrahim said context is key. “Often left unmentioned is that virtually everyone then was cruel and impalement was a standard form of punishment, especially among the Turks, as well as several other European powers,” he said.
In a letter dated Feb. 11, 1462, Vlad explained the reason he had declared war on the Turks was “for the preservation of Christianity.” Such bold statements of faith, Ibrahim said, lend support to the notion that Dracula was, in fact, a committed Christian who saw his just war against the invading Turks as “being first and foremost about defending Christendom from Islam.”
–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice