(BEING CONTINUED FROM 11/05/13)
The Battle of Khandaq: 4th year of Hijra, 626 AD: At the end of the battle of Ohud when Abu Sofian was unable to hurt the Holy Prophet, he returned to Makka after promising that he will come back next year and will take revenge for the defeats of Badr and Ohud. This time it was not only the non believers of Makka who were with him. He had also taken the help of the Jews of Madina to defeat Islam for ever. The Jewish tribes of Madina promised to help in two ways, one to send soldiers to fight in the battlefield and two to create fear among the women and children who were left in the town unprotected. The Prophet’s companion Salman Farsi suggested that the muslims must dig a moat on the unprotected side of the town. The muslims took this advice and the moat was ready within 3 days in which the Prophet himself took part. When the enemy forces arrived at the scene they were unable to enter the city due to the newly dug moat and they stayed on the outerside. But one of their most famous soldier’s named Amr Ibne Abde Wud jumped the moat with his horse and challenged the muslims to fight with him. When The Prophet asked his bravest to go and fight Amr none of them was eager to come out. Omar Ibne Khattab even suggested that this man was so brave that he fought one thousand men alone and defeated them. Ali was eager as ever to fight this man and he came out with the blessings of the Holy Prophet who said, ‘Today the whole faith has come out to fight the whole infidelity. ”Ali was able to kill the enemy soon and when the Prophet saw Ali victorious he uttered the words “ Verily one blow of Ali’s sword on the day of Khadaq is superior to the worship of all beings until the Day of Judgement.”
Amr was killed, but the battle was not over. Armies of non believers were on the other side of the ditch while the muslims were inside the city almost besieged without any provisions. After a while with the prayers of the Holy Prophet a storm blew up that frightened the army of the non believers and they ran away never to come back again.
After the battles of Badr, Ohud and Khandaq the infidels of Makka avoided any further military ventures. The Prophet decided to perform Umra in the 6th year of Hijra (628 AD)As the muslims approached Makka, the infidels of Makka did not like this and stopped the muslims entering Makka. Seeing them bent on aggression, the apostle of God agreed to a treaty with the Makkans. It was wisely drafted by Imam Ali (AS), the terms outwardly looked humiliating to muslims that if a muslim was taken captive by the infidels he will not be returned but if an infidel comes to the hands of the muslims he will be released immediately. When the Holy Prophet signed the treaty, Umar Ibne Khattab disliked it so much that he uttered the words,” I have never doubted about the Prophethood of Muhammad (SA) this much as I did today.” He questioned the Prophet about this humiliating agreement to which the Prophet replied, “I am the Messenger of Allah and all my acts are on the orders from Allah.” But it is evident that this deviation from the path of the Prophet was later to become an acceptable norm rather then an off the cuff event. Later you will see how this misconceived habit of contradicting the infallible Prophet of Islam created divisions within the religion itself. Those who followed Ali as the follower of the Sunna of the Prophet became the partisan of Ali, others followed Omar ibn Khattab.
(see Saheeh Bukhari, Kitab-alKholafa)
The Jews of Madina ever since their treachery during the battle of Khandaq, were always on the look out for some mischief to hurt Islam. This mischief mongering increased so much so that they were banished from the city to live outside Madina. They had extensive lands and had built strong fortresses where most of the jewish community lived. The fort of Khyber was a strong fort built of stone with an iron gate. It was the strong hold of the jews who invaded muslim lands and villages around the area. They killed muslims and looted their property. Warnings were given to the Jews of Khyber to stop their mischievous deeds but they did not bother even to acknowledge their misdeeds. The Holy Prophet proceeded to stop this problem for the muslims. Muslim forces encamped outside this fort. It was in the month of Muharram in the 7th year of Hijra. On the First day Abubakr led the muslim forces to fight the jews. The Jews came out of the fort. A furious battle was fought, muslims could not break the jews onslaught and retreated back to their camp. The Next day Omar Ibne Khattab took the flag and tried to defeat the jewish forces without success. That night the Prophet announced,” Tomorrow I will give the flag of Islam to a man who is brave and does not run away from the battlefield, he loves Allah and the Prophet of Allah and Allah and His Prophet love him.” The Next day, after morning prayers the Prophet called for Ali (AS) and gave the Flag in his hands. Ali (AS) holding the flag in his hand went towards the fort. Noticing that only one man was coming towards the fort the jews did not come out in the open field. Reaching the gates of the fort Ali fixed the pole on a hard stone slab. Noticing the fixing of the flag on a hard stone, a jew who was a learned scholar, asked from the top of the wall, ” who are you? ”Ali replied, “I am Ali son of Abu Talib.” Hearing the name the learned scholar turned towards his people and told them, “I have read in the sacred bothat a man of this name will defeat you.” In accordance with the convention of the Arabs, Ali announced his challenge and demanded the bravest of them to come out and fight him in single combat. Merhub, one of the brave and skilled warriors came out and was killed by Ali (AS) in one blow.
His brother Anter came out and he was also killed in a single blow of Ali’s SwZulfiqar. Once these brothers were killed Ali went towards the iron gates and brought them down. Once the gates were open muslims entered the fort and soon the jews were defeated. This was a great victory for muslims, for the jews were a mischievous lot and had been giving a lot of trouble to muslims of Madina and those living around. Most of the jewish land came into the muslims hands. It was at this time that a Palm orchard called Fadak also came into the muslim hands. The Prophet of Islam took this orchard for himself and later gave it to his daughter Fatimah.
The battle of Khyber was a turning point in the defeat of the jews of the Province of Hejaz and victory for Islam.
On the 10th of Ramazan 8th year of Hijra the Holy Prophet left Madina for Makka with a large number of his companions. On arrival at Makka the Prophet met no resistance. The people of Makka were so overawed that they did not come out, and most of them for fear of their lives hid themselves in their houses. Prophet’s uncle Abbas Ibne Abdul Muttalib took Abu Sofian to the Holy Prophet. The Holy Prophet asked him, “ Has the time not come for you to verify the truth of accepting Allah and my Prophethood.” Abu Sofian replied, “for that my heart still wavers.” Abbas hearing this reply said loudly, “woe to you, be quick in accepting Islam or you might be killed.” Thereupon Abu Sofian verified that Muhammad was the Prophet of Allah and recited the Kalema. His son Moawiya also came in the fold of Islam at this time together with other children of Abu Sofian. The Holy Prophet then declared that any one who enters Abu Sofian’s house would be safe. Holy Prophet then entered the Ka’aba and began to demolish all the 364 idols perched inside the Holy shrine. The biggest one was Hubul and to destroy that idol The Prophet asked Ali to climb over his shoulders and bring the idol down to the ground. This way the Ka’aba was cleared of the idols and was purified in the same manner as Holy Prophet’s ancestor Hazrat Ibrahim did in the beginning when he built the Shrine for the service of one God and none else.
After the bloodless victory of Makka, the battle of Hunain took place in which Ali (AS) was the main champion who had defeated the non believers and most of the tribes around Makka accepted Islam. The battle of Tabuk took place in the same year when Prophet went to the North of Madina. In this battle he did not take Ali (AS) with him. Instead he appointed Ali as the leader in Madina while the Prophet was away. Some mischievous persons told Ali (AS) that he was left with women and children rather then fighting with the Prophet. When Ali (AS) enquired this from the Prophet he replied,” would you not prefer the state of affair as it was between Moses and his brother Aron, except that there will not be a Nabi after me. What the Holy Prophet meant that by leaving Ali inside the city of Madina as his deputy, The Prophet was setting the example of Moses when he left Aron in his place and left for Mount Sinai. This Hadith is called Hadith-e-Manzelat which clearly declares that Ali was to become Prophet’s successor after him.(see Saheehe Bukhari Kitab el Ahlulbayt, Also Soyuti Kitab al Khulafa)
(TO BE CONTINUED)