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Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

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  • Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

    Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?
    Azzam Publications



    Taken from The Sealed Nectar (Biography of the Prophet SAW)


    The Story of the Prisoners of the Battle of Badr in 1 AH


    On their way back to Madinah, at a large sand hill, the Prophet (SAWS) divided the spoils equally among the fighters after he had taken Al-Khums (one-fifth). When they reached As-Safra', he ordered that two of the prisoners should be killed. They were An-Nadr bin Al-Harith and 'Uqbah bin Abi Muait, because they had persecuted the Muslims in Makkah, and harboured deep hatred towards Allah and His Messenger (SAWS) . In a nutshell, they were criminals of war in modern terminology, and their execution was an awesome lesson to oppressors. 'Uqbah forgot his pride and cried out, "Who will look after my children O Messenger of Allah?" The Prophet (SAWS) answered, "The Fire (of Hell)." Did 'Uqbah not remember the day when he had thrown the entrails of a sheep onto the head of the Prophet (SAWS) while he was prostrating himself in prayer, and Fatimah had come and washed it off him? He had also strangled the Prophet (SAWS) with his cloak if it had not been for Abu Bakr to intervene and release the Prophet (SAWS) . The heads of both criminals were struck off by Ali bin Abi Talib.

    The Prophet (SAWS) exhorted the Muslims to treat the prisoners so well to such an extent that the captors used to give the captives their bread (the more valued part of the meal) and keep the dates for themselves.

    Prisoners of war constituted a problem awaiting resolution because it was a new phenomenon in the history of Islam. The Prophet (SAWS) consulted Abu Bakr and Umar bin Al-Khattab as to what he should do with the prisoners. Abu Bakr suggested that he should ransom them, explaining this by saying: "They are after all our relatives, and this money would give us strength against the disbelievers, moreover, Allah could guide them to Islam." Umar advised killing them, saying, "They are the leaders of Kufr (disbelief)." The Prophet (SAWS) preferred Abu Bakr's suggestion to that of Umar's. The following day, Umar called on the Prophet (SAWS) and Abu Bakr to see them weeping. He showed extreme astonishment and inquired about the situation so that he might weep if it was worth weeping for, or else he would feign weeping.

    "It is not for a Prophet that he should have prisoners of war (and free them with ransom)
    until he had made a great slaughter (among his enemies) in the land.
    You desire the good of this world (i.e. the money of ransom for freeing the captives),
    but Allah desires (for you) the Hereafter. And Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.
    Were it not a previous ordainment from Allah,
    a severe torment would have touched you for what you took." [Quran 8:67-68]

    The previous Divine ordainment went as follows,

    "Thereafter (is the time) either for generosity (i.e. free them without ransom) or ransom." [Quran 47:4]

    Which included an area providing permission to take ransom, that is why no penalty was imposed. They were rebuked only for taking prisoners before subduing all the land of disbelief. Apart from this, the polytheists taken to Madinah were not only prisoners of war but rather archcriminals of war whom modern war penal law brings to justice to receive their due sentence of death or prison for life.

    The ransom for the prisoners ranged between 4000 and 1000 Dirhams in accordance with the captive's financial situation. Another form of ransom assumed an educational dimension; most of the Makkans, unlike the Madinese, were literate and so each prisoner who could not afford the ransom was entrusted with ten children to teach them the art of writing and reading. Once the child had been proficient enough, the instructor would be set free. Another clan of prisoners were released unransomed on grounds of being hard up. Zainab, the daughter of the Prophet (SAWS) , paid the ransom of her husband Abul-'As with a necklace. The Muslims released her prisoner and returned the necklace in deference to the Prophet (SAWS) but on condition that Abul-'As allow Zainab to migrate to Madinah, which he actually did.

    In captivity, there was also an eloquent orator called Suhail bin 'Amr. Umar suggested that they pull out his front teeth to disable him from speaking, but the Prophet (SAWS) turned down his suggestion for fear Quraish should
    retaliate in the same manner on one hand, and on the other for fear of Allah's wrath on the Day of Resurrection.

    Sa'd bin An-Nu'man, a lesser pilgrim detained in Makkah, was released in return for setting Abu Sufyan's son, a captive, free.

    The Story of the 600-700 Jews Beheaded by the Prophet (SAWS) at Bani Quraiza in 5 AH

    The Bani Quraiza was a tribe of Jews in a district of Madinah that betrayed the Muslims and sided with the enemy during the Battle of Ahzaab (also known as the Battle of the Confederates and the Battle of the Trench). The Sealed Nectar describes what happened to them immediately after the Battle of Ahzaab:

    Jibreel (as), on the very day the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) came back to Madinah after the previous battle, and while he was washing in Umm Salama's house, visited him asking that he should unsheathe his sword and head for the habitation of the seditious Banu Quraiza and fight them. Jibreel noted that he with a procession of angels would go ahead to shake their forts and cast fear in their hearts.

    The Messenger of Allah (SAWS) , immediately summoned the prayer caller and ordered him to announce fresh hostilities against Banu Quraiza, institued Ibn Umm Maktum as a ruler of Madinah, and entrusted the banner of war to Ali bin Abi Talib who marched towards the appointed target and came close enough to hear the Jews abusing the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) , who on his part set out at the head of three thousand infantry men and thirty horsemen of Ansar (Helpers) and Muhajireen (Emigrants). On their way to encounter the enemy, the afternoon prayer was due. Some Muslims refused to observe it until they had defeated the enemy, while others offered it in its proper time, as usual. The Prophet (SAWS) objected to neither. When they reached the habitations of Banu Quraiza, they laid tight siege to their forts. Seeing this terrible situation they were in, the chief of the Jews Ka'b bin Asad offered them three alternatives: to embrace Islam, and consequently their life, wealth, women and children would be in full security, and reminded them that such behaviour would not be incongruous with what they had read in their books about the veracity of Muhammad's Prophethood; to kill their children and women and then challenge the Prophet (SAWS) and his followers to the sword to either exterminate the Muslims or be exterminated, or as a third possibility to take Muhammad (SAWS) and his people by surprise on Saturday a day mutually understood to witness no fighting.

    None of those alternatives appealed them, so their chief, angrily and indignantly, turned to them saying: "You have never been decisive in decision-making since you were born." The gloomy future already visible, they made contacts with some Muslims, who had maintained good relation with them, in order to learn about their fate in the light of the current circumstances. They requested that Abu Lubaba be despatched to them for advice. On his arrival, the men began to implore, women and children to cry desperately. In answer to their demand for advice he pointed to his throat saying it was homicide awaiting them. He then immediately realized that he had betrayed the
    Prophet's trust, so he headed directly for the mosque in Madinah and tied himself to a wooden tall pole swearing that no one would untie him save the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) , and added that he would never enter the
    habitation of Banu Quraiza in recompense for the deadly mistake he made. When the Messenger (SAWS) was informed of this incident, he said, "I would have begged Allah to forgive him if he had asked me, but since he had tied himself out of his own free will, then it was Allah Who would turn to him in forgiveness."

    The Jews of Banu Quraiza could have endured the siege much longer because food and water were plentifully available and their strongholds were greatly fortified, whereas the Muslims were in the wild bare land suffering a lot from cold and hunger, let alone too much fatigue consequent on endless warfare operations that had started even before the battle of Confederates. Nevertheless, this was a battle of nerves, for Allah had cast fear in the the Jews' hearts, and their morale had almost collapsed especially when two Muslim heroes, Ali bin Abi Talib and Az-Zubair bin 'Awwam proceeded with Ali swearing that he would never stop until he had either stormed their garrisons or been martyred like Hamza (a former Muslim martyr).

    In the light of this reluctance, they had nothing except to comply with the Messenger's judgement. The Messenger of Allah (SAWS) ordered that the men should be handcuffed, and this was done under the supervision of Muhammad bin Salamah Al-Ansari while the women and children were isolated in confinement. Thereupon Al-Aws tribe interceded begging the Prophet (SAWS) to be lenient towards them. He suggested that Sa'd bin Mu'adh, a former ally, be deputed to give verdict about them, and they agreed.

    Sa'd meanwhile stayed behind in Madinah due to a serious wound he sustained in the Confederates Battle. He was summoned and brought on a donkey. On his way to the Prophet (SAWS) , the Jews used to exhort him to be lenient in his judgement on account of former friendship. Sa'd remained silent but when they persisted he uttered: "It is time for Sa'd not to be afraid of the blame of the blamers." On hearing this decisive attitude, some of them returned to Madinah waiting for a desperate doom.

    On arrival, he alighted with the help of some men. He was informed that the Jews had agreed to accept his verdict about them. He immediately wondered if his judgement would pass on all the people present, the Prophet (SAWS) included, turning his face away in honour of him. The reply was positive.

    He decided that all the able-bodied male persons belonging to the tribe should be killed, women and children taken prisoners and their wealth divided among the Muslim fighters. The Prophet (SAWS) accepted his judgement saying
    that Sa'd had adjudged by the Command of Allah. In fact, the Jews deserved that severe punitive action for the ugly treachery they had harboured against Islam, and the large arsenal they have amassed and which consisted of one thousand and five hundred swords, two thousand spears, three hundred armours and five hundred shields, all of which went into the hands of the Muslims. Trenches were dug in the bazaar of Madinah and a number of Jews between six and seven hundred were beheaded therein. Hot beds of intrigue and treachery were thus exterminated once and for all.

    Huyai, a chief criminal of war, a devil of Bani Nadir and Safiyah's father, had joined the ranks of Banu Quraiza when Quraish and Ghatfan defected, was admitted into the audience of the Prophet (SAWS) with his hands tied to his neck with a rope. In audacious defiance, he declared obstinate enmity to the Prophet (SAWS) but admitted that Allah's Will was to be fulfilled and added that he was resigned to his fate. He was ordered to sit down, and was beheaded on the spot.

    Only one woman of the Jews was killed because she had killed a Muslim warrior by flinging a grinding stone upon him. A few elements of the enemy embraced Islam and their lives, wealth and children were spared. As for the spoils of the war, the Prophet (SAWS) divided them, after putting a fifth aside, in accordance with Allah's injunctions. Three shares went to the horseman and one to the infantry fighter. Women captives were sent to Najd to be bartered with horses and weaponry.

    After the war with Banu Quraiza had been settled and they had been defeated, Sa'd bin Mu'adh's wish was gratified and he gave his last breath. In response to his supplication 'Aishah narrated, Sa'd's wounds began to
    bleed from the front part of his neck while he was in his tent which the Prophet (SAWS) had pitched for him in the mosque so that he would be in close proximity in order to inquire about and watch his well-being closely. The people were not scared except when the blood flowed towards them, and in the Mosque along with Sa'd's tent, there was the tent of Banu Ghifar. They said: O people of the tent, what is it that is coming to us from you? Lo! it was Sa'd's wound that was bleeding and he died thereon.

    Jabir narrated that the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) had said: "The Throne of the Compassionate shook for the death of Sa'd bin Mu'adh." When his bier was carried, At-Tirmidhi said: The hypocrites alleged it was too light. The
    Messenger of Allah (SAWS) retorted:

    "The angels are carrying him."

    In the process of the sieze laid to Banu Quraiza, one man of the Muslims, Khallad bin Suwaid was killed when a women of the Jews dropped the grinding stone on him, and another, Abu Sinan bin Mihsan, the brother of 'Ukasha,
    died.

    Abu Lubaba stayed tied for six nights. His wife used to untie him at prayer times and then he tied himself again to the pole. One early morning, Allah the All-Forgiving revealed a verse to the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) to the effect that Allah had turned to Abu Lubaba with forgiveness. The Muslims rushed to release him but he insisted that the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) himself do it. And this was done shortly before the morning prayer.

    This Military Expedition took place in the month of Dhul Qa'dah in the year five Hijri (5AH), and the siege of Banu Quraiza's forts lasted for 25 days. The Chapter of Confederates (Quran, Surah 33) was revealed containing Allah's Words concerning the basic issues relating to the believers and hypocrites during the battle of the Confederates, and the consequences of the treachery and breaching of covenants by the Jews.
    There is rest only in the aakhira.
    Man will rest in the aakhira according to how hard he strives in dunya.

    - Khaalid Ibn Al Waleed (ra) -

    If you find yourself in a time where speech is regarded as knowledge,
    and knowledge is regarded as deeds,
    then you are in the worst of times, with the worst of people.

    - Abu Hazim Al Ashja'i (ra) -

    I saw a dog without any clothes on .
    That's right, a nude dog.
    The Deepweb is disgusting.
    - Unknown -


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  • #2
    Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

    excellent post :up:...explains so much mshAllah jazakAllah khair
    *Alhamdulillah*

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

      This is not a good post. You are not giving a good impression of the holy prophet to the independent historians. They'll definitely raise the following points:

      1. The prisoners of war were executed in custody.

      2. Holy prophet rejected the appeal of the prisoners because of his personal grudge.

      3. One of the incentives of war for the fighters was money which was distributed to them equally at the end of every war.

      4. Holy prophet used to get the lions share (1/5th) or khums from every war for himself whereas the remainder of the booty he distributed among all other fighters.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

        this is the truth...we dotn want to plz ppl but Allah...so y wud we show ppl lies?

        Also see this part:

        the Prophet (SAWS) divided them, after putting a fifth aside, in accordance with Allah's injunctions.
        *Alhamdulillah*

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

          Originally posted by Masumah View Post
          this is the truth...we dotn want to plz ppl but Allah...so y wud we show ppl lies?

          Also see this part:

          the Prophet (SAWS) divided them, after putting a fifth aside, in accordance with Allah's injunctions.
          We should keep this kind of facts within ourselves and shouldn't post it on international forums. This is good only for us because we've a strong belief. But the independent historians make their judgment only on merits. They've a single measure of judgment or one standard for everyone. They cannot use double standards. The last statement in your post makes the whole affair even more suspicious. Try to look it at it with a fair and independent judge who doesn't involve his personal sentiments or favoritism while make a judgement.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

            im sorri ..its the truth..whether u like it or not.
            *Alhamdulillah*

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

              Originally posted by rslshfqt View Post
              This is not a good post. You are not giving a good impression of the holy prophet to the independent historians. They'll definitely raise the following points:

              1. The prisoners of war were executed in custody.

              2. Holy prophet rejected the appeal of the prisoners because of his personal grudge.

              3. One of the incentives of war for the fighters was money which was distributed to them equally at the end of every war.

              4. Holy prophet used to get the lions share (1/5th) or khums from every war for himself whereas the remainder of the booty he distributed among all other fighters.


              1.) In custody? Where else do you execute prisoners of war?

              3.) Our mujahideen wanted to fight to give the victory to Islam. They didn't open major lands until if i'm not mistaken the Futuhaat during the times of Khilafah of Umar (RadiAllahu Ta'aala Anhu) when they opened major lands like Ash-Sham and Egypt etc. You cannot accuse the ones who fought alongside the Messenger of Allah :saw: of insincerity as some insincere mujahideen were pointed out to us by Rasoolullah :saw: and furthermore we can see the willingness of our beloved Sahaba (RadiAllahu Anhum) and their willingness to die for Islam just by the battlefield statistics:

              Badr - ~310 muslims V ~1000 kuffar (at the time)
              Uhud - ~1000 muslims V 10,000 kuffar (at the time)
              etc etc yet, they fought with money as an incentive? No chance :)

              And anyway...
              How much else did the fighters make? They need something to live on while in Ghazawaat. Furthermore the spoils of war are divided to the fighters and rightly so - afterall, they did fightMashari Al Ashwaq Ila Masari Al Ushaaq by Imam Ibn Nuhaas.
              "Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes"

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                Originally posted by rslshfqt View Post
                This is not a good post. You are not giving a good impression of the holy prophet to the independent historians. They'll definitely raise the following points:

                1. The prisoners of war were executed in custody.

                2. Holy prophet rejected the appeal of the prisoners because of his personal grudge.

                3. One of the incentives of war for the fighters was money which was distributed to them equally at the end of every war.

                4. Holy prophet used to get the lions share (1/5th) or khums from every war for himself whereas the remainder of the booty he distributed among all other fighters.
                Almost 5 years ago, I got briefly banned for making these same points.
                Although an obvious interest of mine ;) [thus the Username], historical assessment of Mohammed the man---as in a "historical" Mohammed versus the legend of Mohammed the Prophet chosen of Allah, etc..---was deemed disrespectful.
                This is one subject I would have loved to discuss further but was informed it would not be prudent. Ah, well.

                Respectfully,
                History

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                  Originally posted by History View Post
                  Almost 5 years ago, I got briefly banned for making these same points.
                  Although an obvious interest of mine ;) [thus the Username], historical assessment of Mohammed the man---as in a "historical" Mohammed versus the legend of Mohammed the Prophet chosen of Allah, etc..---was deemed disrespectful.
                  This is one subject I would have loved to discuss further but was informed it would not be prudent. Ah, well.

                  Respectfully,
                  History
                  plz refer to the above post
                  *Alhamdulillah*

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                    Just a note reagarding Rizq... The Messenger of Allah :saw: said something along the lines of My Rizq comes from beneath my spear (paraphrasing the hadith) so therefore it's my conclusion that sincerely gotten Ghaneema (booty of war) is the most halaal form of Rizq and easily the best.

                    Furthermore, that's the dunya side of Booty of war whereas the Shaheed on the Day of Judgement will wear a crown in which one emerald is worth more than the world and everything in it. For people of sincere unwavering faith (e.g. the Sahaba (RadiAllahu Ta'aala Anhum)) the Akhirah is way more precious than the dunya so accusations that they were fighting for money is baseless.
                    "Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                      Originally posted by RashidD View Post
                      Just a note reagarding Rizq... The Messenger of Allah :saw: said something along the lines of My Rizq comes from beneath my spear (paraphrasing the hadith) so therefore it's my conclusion that sincerely gotten Ghaneema (booty of war) is the most halaal form of Rizq and easily the best.

                      Furthermore, that's the dunya side of Booty of war whereas the Shaheed on the Day of Judgement will wear a crown in which one emerald is worth more than the world and everything in it. For people of sincere unwavering faith (e.g. the Sahaba (RadiAllahu Ta'aala Anhum)) the Akhirah is way more precious than the dunya so accusations that they were fighting for money is baseless.
                      You're very right. I also agree with you. But this is not enough for the fairly thinking historians. If they condemn Bush or the American soldiers for killing the POWs, then we cannot stop them to use the same yardstick in our case. We cannot prove that Allah had give us some special license to kill and take away money of the enemies. Moreover, we cannot tell them that the money when it was in the pocket of the original owner was haram but it changed to halal or the best money as soon as it came into our pockets. The accusations of fighting for money could be refuted had we never took any money. Why don't you realize that this is a solid proof against us? So stop posting these dangerous facts. They could be used as a propaganda against us very easily.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                        Truth will out, as they say.
                        I do not believe facts can be used as propaganda.
                        Only misused by the unethical.

                        I recently had a dialog regarding the humanity of the prophets.
                        I.e. Hebrew Scripture shows their human qualities: that even the greatest of us will stumble and sin at times, including the prophets--and the lesson of their lives is more than just the Message they convey, but how they take responsibility for their misdeeds, atone, are forgiven, and move forward in Life secure in G-d's Love.
                        versus:
                        The shared Muslim perspective that the Prophets are "on a higher level" than the common human being, near perfect beings in their righteousness.

                        I find this disparate understanding of the prophets as either one of us (Jewish) or above us (Muslim) makes impossible actual dialog on their human nature--e.g. Mohammed the man--and the inherent faults that man is heir to (paraphrasing Shakespeare).

                        To discuss Mohammed the man is taboo at Ummah.com in my experience. And I have respected this for nigh 5 years. It would be interesting to do so before I leave, but I do wish to leave with some good will. :)

                        Respectfully,
                        History

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                          Originally posted by History View Post
                          Truth will out, as they say.
                          I do not believe facts can be used as propaganda.
                          Only misused by the unethical.

                          I recently had a dialog regarding the humanity of the prophets.
                          I.e. Hebrew Scripture shows their human qualities: that even the greatest of us will stumble and sin at times, including the prophets--and the lesson of their lives is more than just the Message they convey, but how they take responsibility for their misdeeds, atone, are forgiven, and move forward in Life secure in G-d's Love.
                          versus:
                          The shared Muslim perspective that the Prophets are "on a higher level" than the common human being, near perfect beings in their righteousness.

                          I find this disparate understanding of the prophets as either one of us (Jewish) or above us (Muslim) makes impossible actual dialog on their human nature--e.g. Mohammed the man--and the inherent faults that man is heir to (paraphrasing Shakespeare).

                          To discuss Mohammed the man is taboo at Ummah.com in my experience. And I have respected this for nigh 5 years. It would be interesting to do so before I leave, but I do wish to leave with some good will. :)

                          Respectfully,
                          History
                          Oh, You're still here.

                          I thought you were already history.:D

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                            The execution of the B. Qurayza tribe has been explained over and over again. Here are some key facts:
                            • B. Qurayza broke the treaty they had with the Muslims so of course, they were punished.
                            • The Jews choose Sa'ad bin Maudh to be the arbitrator instead of Prophet Muhammad :saw: .
                            • Only the fighters were killed.


                            This is a favorite attack on Prophet Muhammad :saw: by the kuffar so it should be explained.

                            And about the Holy Prophet :saw: getting 1/5 of the booty, its not like he used it to build palaces or something or used it on himself. There is a hadith that is narrated in one of the two Sahihs in which the Prophet :saw: states that if the entire mountain of Uhud was turned into dinars and dirhams, he would give it all away by the third night.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Did the Prophet Execute Prisoners of War?

                              Originally posted by Ibn Sina View Post
                              And about the Holy Prophet :saw: getting 1/5 of the booty, its not like he used it to build palaces or something or used it on himself. There is a hadith that is narrated in one of the two Sahihs in which the Prophet :saw: states that if the entire mountain of Uhud was turned into dinars and dirhams, he would give it all away by the third night.
                              You're further exposing the truth unintentionally. Now everybody knows that there's no record or evidence of giving away any money. Only thing on the record is that he married a number of women after he started getting money from wars. And also it's on record that he had nothing to give to his dearest daughter on her wedding, but she was a very rich lady later on. She owned some precious articles including a big trunk mad of gold which is exhibited in one of the Islamic museums in Iraq. She also owned a large estate in Taif which later on became a very hot issue when Hazrart Omar took it into governments custody. You think that neutral people will not think about these things.

                              Comment

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