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Consequences of the defeat at

Consequences of the defeat at

(1) Although Muslims were militarily defeated in this battle, they learned not to disregard the Holy Prophet’s orders. Such disobediences never happened in the following wars.

(2) The hypocrites started all sorts of conspiracies; they rejoiced on the Muslims’ defeat and blamed them.[1]

(3) The Jews, too, surfaced their hatred, saying, “No prophet has been defeated to this degree!”[2]

(4) The enemies of Islam around Medina were emboldened to initiate conspiracies. Ban£-Asad, for instance, attempted to attack Medina. Other events the most famous of which were known as al-Raj¢` and Bi’r Ma`£nah took place as a result of the Muslims’ defeat at the Battle of U¦ud.

(5) Upon the return of Muslims to Medina, the shadow of grief and despair prevailed over the city. Conspiracies of the hypocrites and the Jews worsened the situation. God removed these signs of despair and strengthened the Muslims’ morale through a revelation of some verses. According to Ibn Is¦¡q, sixty verses were revealed about the Battle of U¦ud.[3] God, in these verses, mentions the mysteries behind the Muslims’ failure and warns them not to despair even if they suffer a defeat. God the Almighty adds that the very reason for Muslims’ zeal was their seeking of worldly material. Muslims were victorious in the Battle of Badr, because they fought for the sake of God only. However, in the Battle of U¦ud, they were after booties:

And Allah did certainly assist you at Badr when you were weak; be careful of your duty to Allah then, that you may give thanks.

And be not infirm, and be not grieving, and you shall have the upper hand if you are believers.

If a wound has afflicted you at U¦ud, a wound like it has also afflicted the unbelieving people; and We bring these days to men by turns, and that Allah may know those who believe and take witness from among you; and Allah does not love the unjust.

Do you think that you will enter the garden while Allah has not yet known those who strive hard from among you, and He has not known the patient.

And certainly, you desired death before you met it; so indeed you may have seen it and looked at it.

And certainly Allah made good to you His promise, when you slew them by His permission, until when you became weak- hearted and disputed about the affair and disobeyed after He had shown you that which you loved; of you were some who desired this world and of you were some who desired the hereafter; then He turned you away from them that He might try you; and He has certainly pardoned you, and Allah is Gracious to the believers.

What! When a misfortune befell you, and you had certainly afflicted the unbelievers with twice as much, you began to say: Whence is this? Say: it is from yourselves; surely, Allah has power over all things.[4]

The defeat and failure in the Battle of U¦ud damaged the Muslims’ military credentials badly and caused the infidels and hypocrites to indulge in conspiracies against them. Choosing this very time to attack Muslims was due to Muslims’ weak points.[5] Here are some examples of their conspiracies:

The Unsuccessful Attack of Ban£-Asad

The Holy Prophet was informed of Ban£-Asad’s intention to attack Medina. He dispatched Ab£-Salamah with one hundred and fifty troops and ordered them to attack the enemy before they would have any chance. The troops arrived at the place of Ban£-Asad with tremendous speed. The tribesmen became overwhelmed and fled the scene. Ab£-Salamah returned to Medina with some prisoners and booties.[6]

This victory boosted the Muslims’ military credentials to some degree. The hypocrites, Jews and the tribes living around Medina realized that Muslims were not truly defeated.

The Event of Bi’r Ma`£nah

This event was even more disastrous than the event of Raj¢`. It took place in ¯afar, the 4th year of Hegira. Ab£-Bar¡', the chief of Ban£-`ªmir, came to see the Holy Prophet in Medina. Showing no inclination to Islam, he made the proposal that the Holy Prophet would send a group of his followers to Najd to invite people to Islam. The Holy Prophet replied, “I fear that the Najd people might hurt Muslims.” Ab£-Bar¡' said, “I will protect them.” The Holy Prophet, then, dispatched seventy[7] of the Qur'¡n instructors and true companions. Arriving at Bi’r Ma`£nah, this group sent a letter to `ªmir ibn ±ufayl, who killed the messenger without even looking at the letter. Then, he asked Ban£-`ªmir to kill the Holy Prophet’s envoy. They refused to do so thanks to Ab£-Bar¡’s promise of protection. `ªmir ibn ±ufayl, together with some branches of Ban£-Sulaym, charged at the Holy Prophet’s envoy who, in return, had to defend themselves and all were martyred except for Ka`b ibn Zayd and `Amr ibn Umayyah al-®amar¢[8] who had fallen captive to the enemy and then set free. On his return to Medina, he killed two members of Ban£-`ªmir, without knowing that they had been on a contract with the Holy Prophet.[9]

Campaign against Ban£ Na¤¢r

Following the murder of two members of Ban£-`ªmir,[10] the Holy Prophet expressed his condolences and grief. He said, “I have to pay their blood-money.”[11] Ban£-`ªmir sent a letter to the Holy Prophet demanding with blood-money.[12] Because Ban£-`ªmir had a peace treaty with Ban£’l-Na¤¢r, the Holy Prophet, along with some An¥¡r, went to their castle around Medina in order to ask for help in paying the blood-money. The chiefs of Ban£’l-Na¤¢r superficially agreed to the Holy Prophet’s proposal but secretly had appointed a man to throw a stone on his head to kill him. Through Divine information, the Holy Prophet became aware of this conspiracy.[13] He suddenly left for Medina, ordering them to leave it and allowing them to keep their own possessions. Being frightened, they intended to leave that place forever; but `Abdull¡h ibn Ubayy seduced them to resist promising that he would assist them if a war broke out. He told them that if they were expelled from Medina, he would leave there.[14]

Some historical accounts report that prior to this event, Quraysh had provoked Ban£’l-Na¤¢r to fight against Muslims.[15] These provocations were influential in the outcomes of this event.

Having been misled by `Abdull¡h’s false promises, Ban£’l-Na¤¢r preferred to stay. By the command of the Holy Prophet, the Muslim troops surrounded their castle for fifteen days during which there was no sign of supporting troops! Ban£’l-Na¤¢r had to surrender and take their possessions on camels; some going to Damascus and others to Khaybar, including their

[1] al-W¡qid¢, op cit, 1:317-318.

[2] al-W¡qid¢, op cit, 1:317; °alab¢, op cit, 2:549.

[3] Ibn Hush¡m, op cit, 3:112.

[4] Holy Qur’¡n 3:123, 134, 140, 142, 143, 152, 165.

[5] al-W¡qid¢, op cit, 1:342.

[6] Al-W¡qid¢, op cit, pp. 340-343: Mu¦ammad Ibn Sa`d. Al-±abaq¡t al-Kubr¡ 2:50.

[7] According to some accounts, it was forty people. See ±abar¢, T¡r¢kh al-Umam wa’l-Mul£k 3:34; Ibn Hush¡m al-S¢rah al-Nabawiyyah 3:194; al-W¡qid¢, al-Magh¡z¢ 1:347.

[8] ±abar¢, op cit, 3:33-34; ±abars¢, Majma` al-Bay¡n 2:533; Ibn Shahr¡sh£b, Man¡qib 1:195-196; al-Majlis¢, op cit, 20:147-148; al-W¡qid¢, op cit, pp. 346-348; Ibn Hush¡m, op cit, 3:193; Ibn Sa`d, al-±abaq¡t al-Kubr¡ 2:51-53.

[9] ±abar¢, op cit, pp. 34; Ibn Hush¡m, op cit, 3:195; Ibn Sa`d, op cit, pp. 53.

[10] Some historians have set the date of this event prior to the Battle of U¦ud, mentioned other reasons. Sayyid Ja`far Murta¤¡ al-`ªmil¢ consents to this opinion. Al-¯a¦¢ min S¢rat al-Nab¢ al-A`¨am 6:32-44.

[11] Ibn Sa`d, Al-±abaq¡t al-Kubr¡ 2:53; Ibn Hush¡m, op cit, 3:195; ±abar¢, T¡r¢kh al-Umam wa’l-Mul£k 3:35; al-W¡qid¢, op cit, 1:352.

[12] al-W¡qid¢, op cit, pp. 352, 364.

[13] al-Bayhaq¢, op cit, pp. 335; al-W¡qid¢, op cit, 1:365-366; ±abars¢, I`l¡m al-War¡, pp. 88.

[14] Holy Qur’¡n 59:11; ±abars¢, Majma` al-Bay¡n 10:264; al-Majlis¢, Bi¦¡r al-Anw¡r 20:165, 169.

[15] Samh£d¢, op cit, 1:298.

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