His military career started in 1164 at the age of twenty six under his uncle Assad al-Din Shirkuh who worked under Nur al-Din. Saladin moved to Egypt with his uncle with orders from Nur al-Din in order to support Shawar, a vizier to Al Adid the Fatimid Caliph, Against Durgham a member of the Banu Ruzzaik Tribe. After shawar’s victory they were asked to retreat to Syria but they refused as they said it was the will of their master Nur al-Din. After this Saladin commanded the right wing of Shirkuh’s army that clashed with crusader forces on the desert border of the Nile River just west of Giza were they triumphed.
He played a major role as he faked his retreat as the Crusader forces scattered he attacked from the back. Soon after the marched toward Alexandria were they were attacked by a superior crusader force then Shirkuh split his army and Saladin was commissioned to protect the city. With the struggle between Shawar, Shirkuh, and the Amalric I King of Jerusalem over power over Egypt. Saladin assassinated Shawar and his uncle died the same year, Saladin was appointed by Al Adid as a vizier.