Mohammed and the Unbelievers
THE RAID ON THE TRIBE OF B. SULAYM
I540 Seven days after Mohammed returned from Badr he led an armed force in a raid against a tribe allied with the Quraysh. The fighting band waited for three days at a watering hole but found no opportunity for killing and returned to Medina.
THE RAID OF THE PARCHED GRAIN
I543 Abu Sufyan wanted revenge on Mohammed for his defeat at Badr, and he swore that he would not have sex until he got it. He headed out with two hundred men to fulfil his vow. After a short day’s ride, he stopped near Medina at night and got information about the Muslims. The next morning his army burned some new date palm trees, killed two Muslims, and left. The Muslims gave hot pursuit. Along the trail they found some sacks of parched grain that Abu Sufyan had abandoned to allow a fast escape. They were not able to engage Abu Sufyan and finally returned to Medina.
THE RAID OF DHU AMARR
T1365 After the raid of parched grain, Mohammed stayed in Medina about a month. Then he raided Najd. There he stayed for a month but never engaged any of the Quraysh or their allies, so he returned
THE RAID OF BAHRAN
T1365 Mohammed and his men then set out for Bahran to seek the Quraysh. Two months later they returned to Medina without any contact with the enemies of Allah.
THE AFFAIR OF THE JEWS OF QAYNUQA
I545 There were three tribes of Jews in Medina. The Banu Qaynuqa were gold-smiths and lived in a stronghold. Mohammed said they had broken the treaty signed when Mohammed came to Medina. How they did this is unclear.
I545 Mohammed assembled the Jews in their market and said, “O Jews, be careful that Allah does not bring vengeance upon you the way he did to the Quraysh. Become Muslims. You know that I am the prophet that was sent to you. You will find that in your scriptures.”
I545 They replied, “O Mohammed, you seem to think that we are your people. Don’t fool yourself. You may have killed a few merchants of the Quraysh, but we are men of war and real men.”
I545 The response of the Koran:
3:12 Say to the kafirs, “Soon you will be defeated and thrown into Hell, a wretched home!” Truly, there has been a sign for you in the two armies which met in battle. One army fought for Allah’s cause, and the other army was a group of kafirs, and the kafirs saw with their own eyes that their enemy was twice its actual size. Allah gives help to whom He pleases. Certainly there is a lesson to be learned in this for those who recognize it.
I546 A little later, Mohammed besieged the Jewish tribe of Banu Qaynuqa in their quarters. Neither of the other two Jewish tribes came to their support. Finally, the Jews surrendered and expected to be slaughtered after their capture.
I546 An Arab ally, bound to them by a client relationship, approached Mohammed and said, “O Mohammed, deal kindly with my clients.” Mohammed ignored him. The ally repeated the request and Mohammed still ignored him. The ally grabbed Mohammed by the robe and enraged Mohammed, who said, “Let me go!” The ally said, “No, you must deal kindly with my clients. They have protected me and now you would kill them all? I fear these changes.” The response by the Koran:
5:57 O, you who believe, do not take those who have received the Scriptures [Jews and Christians] before you, who have scoffed and jested at your religion, or who are kafirs for your friends. Fear Allah if you are true believers. When you call to prayer, they make it a mockery and a joke. This is because they are a people who do not un-derstand.
Mohammed released the Jews he had captured but took all of their wealth and goods. He drove the first of the three tribes of Jews from Medina with only the clothes on their backs. Two tribes were left.
THE RAID OF AL QARADA
I547 Mohammed’s victory at Badr and ongoing jihad caused the Quraysh to travel by a different route to Syria. They hired a new guide to take them over the new route. Mohammed had information about their route and sent a party to raid them. They were carrying a great deal of silver when the caravan stopped at a watering hole. The Muslims surprised them and the Quraysh managed to escape, but Mohammed’s men stole all the caravan’s goods, including the silver. The stolen goods were delivered to Mohammed in Medina.
THE ASSASSINATION OF AL ASHRAF, THE JEW
I548 When Al Ashraf, a Jew of Medina, heard that two of his friends of the Quraysh had been killed at Badr, he said that being in the grave was better than being on earth with Mohammed. To oppose Mohammed was to be “the enemy of Allah.” So the “enemy of Allah” composed some poems bewailing the loss of his friends and at-tacking Islam.
I551 When Mohammed heard Al Ashraf’s criticism of his politics, he said, “Who will rid me of Al Ashraf?” A Muslim said, “I will kill him for you.” Days later Mo-hammed found out that his assassin was not doing anything, including eating or drinking. Mohammed summoned him and asked what was going on. The man re-plied that he had taken on a task that was too difficult for him to do. Mohammed said that it was a duty he should try to perform. The assassin said, “O Apostle of Allah, I will have to tell a lie.” The prophet said, “Say what you like; you are free in the matter.”
I551 The stage was set. The assassin arranged to go with a friend to the Jew, Al Ashraf, and befriend him and discuss poetry. After friendly talk and a few recitations, he told Al Ashraf of his dissatisfaction with Islam. This talk bonded him to the Jew as a friend. Then he said that he wished to borrow money to buy food and wanted to put up weapons as a security for the loan. Also, he had some friends who were dissat-isfied with Mohammed who would come as well, to get a loan and use weapons as a security. The goal was for a small group of men to be able to approach the Jew with weapons and not arouse suspicion.
I552 The scene was set and the group of assassins met with Mohammed, and he led them to the fortified home that Al Ashraf lived in. Just before they got there, Mo-hammed left them with the blessing, “Go in Allah’s name. O Allah, help them.”
I552 They knocked on Al Ashraf’s door and called out his name. He had already gone to bed when he heard them. His wife asked who was calling at that time of night. Al Ashraf told her the Muslim’s name. She asked that he not go because there was bad blood between the Jews and Mohammed, and it was dangerous. He assured her that these men were no problem and went downstairs. There were the assassins with their weapons for the security of the loan and big friendly smiles. They stood outside the door and chatted. It was a beautiful night, and they invited Al Ashraf to take a short walk with them. He accepted.
I552 As they walked and talked, the lead assassin put his arm around Al Ashraf and, as he drew his arm back, ran his hand through Al Ashraf’s hair. He smelled his hand and remarked upon the beautiful scent in the Jew’s hair. In order to smell it better he reached up to the Jew’s hair again and grabbed the hair and jerked Al Ashraf’s head down. “Kill the enemy of Allah,” he shouted. The assassins hacked at the Jew with their swords but in the confusion only cut him and one of their own. Then the lead assassin reached for his knife, plunged it into the Jew’s belly, and ripped downwards to his groin. Al Ashraf screamed so loudly everyone woke up. The assassins ran back to Mohammed.
I552 Their wounded friend lagged behind, so they carried him back with them. When they got back to Mohammed, he was praying. They told him they had killed the enemy of Allah and their attack had terrorized all the Jews. There was no Jew in Medina who was not afraid.
B5,59,369 Allah’s Apostle said, “Who is willing to kill Kab Bin Al-Ashraf who has hurt Allah and His Apostle?”
Thereupon Maslama got up saying, “O Allah’s Apostle! Would you like that I kill him?”
The Prophet said, “Yes.”
Maslama said, “Then allow me to say a false thing to deceive Kab.”
The Prophet said, “You may say it.”
Then Maslama went to Kab and said, “Mohammed demands money from us and I need to borrow money.”
On that, Kab said, “By Allah, you will get tired of him!”
Maslama said, “Now as we have followed him, we do not want to leave him unless and until we see how his end is going to be. Now we want you to lend us a camel load of food.”
Kab said, “Yes, I will lend you the food, but you should mortgage some-thing to me.”
Maslama and his companion said, “What do you want?”
Kab replied, “Mortgage your women to me.”
They said, “How can we mortgage our women to you and you are the most handsome of the Arabs?”
Kab said, “Then mortgage your sons to me.”
They said, “How can we mortgage our sons to you? Later they would be abused by the people’s saying that so-and-so has been mortgaged for a camel’s load of food. That would cause us great disgrace, but we will mort-gage our arms to you.”
Maslama and his companion promised Kab that Maslama would return to him. He came to Kab at night along with Kab’s foster brother, Abu Na’ila. Kab invited them to come into his fort, and then he went down to them.
His wife asked him, “Where are you going at this time?”
Kab replied, “None but Maslama and my foster brother Abu Na’ila has come.”
His wife said, “I hear a voice as if dropping blood is from him.”
Kab said, “A generous man should respond to a call at night even if in-vited to be killed.” Maslama went with the two men.
So Maslama went in together with two men and said to them, “When Kab comes, I will touch his hair and smell it and, when you see that I have got hold of his head, strip him. I will let you smell his head.”
Kab Bin Al-Ashraf came down to them wrapped in his clothes and smell-ing of perfume. Maslama said, “I have never smelt a better scent than this.”
Kab replied, “I have the best.”
Maslama requested Kab, “Will you allow me to smell your head?”
Kab said, “Yes.”
Maslama smelt it and made his companion smell it as well. Then he re-quested Kab again, “Will you let me smell your head?” Kab said, “Yes.”
When Maslama got a strong hold of him, he said to his companion, “Get at him!”
So they killed him and went to the Prophet and informed him. Abu Rafi was killed after Kab Bin Al-Ashraf.
KILL ANY JEW THAT FALLS INTO YOUR POWER
I554 The Apostle of Allah said, “Kill any Jew who falls into your power.” Hearing this, Muhayyisa fell upon a Jewish merchant who was a business associate and killed him. Muhayyisa’s brother was not a Muslim and asked how Muhayyisa could kill a man who had been his friend and partner in many business deals. The Muslim said that if Mohammed had asked him to kill his brother he would have done it immedi-ately. His brother said, “You mean that if Mohammed said to cut off my head you would do it?” “Yes,” was the reply. The older brother then said, “By Allah, any relig-ion that brings you to this is marvelous.” And he decided then and there to become a Muslim.
A NEW WIFE
M250 Mohammed took a third wife, Hafsa, the daughter of Omar. She was a widow of a Muslim and about 20 years old. Now he was married to daughters of two of his most faithful followers, Abu Bakr and Omar.
None of the marriages of Medina would ever produce children who lived to be adults. Only his first marriage in Mecca produced a child who would give him grand-children who lived to adulthood. Fatima, his daughter, would continue the lineage of Mohammed.