battle, in the cause of Islam, was led by the Prophet (PBUH) on the 17th of
Ramadan, in the second year of the Hijra. The Prophet, along with his army
marched out of Medina towards Badr. Meanwhile, Abu Sufyan was busy building up
his army, resources and the evidently lack of courage. He was continuously
monitoring the movement of the Muslim army. The Quraish were consumed by the
fire of revenge and were arrogantly confident of victory. The Quran says,
“Boastfully and to be seen of men, and hinder
men from the path of Allah” (VIII: 47).
the Makkans under the command of Abu Sufyan were reluctant to engagement and
took a detour towards the red sea, but upon insistence of Abu Jahl, they headed
to Badr with over 1000 soldiers and encamped there.
then made their first move and reached the battlefield, fully equipped, that
besides men included 300 horses and 700 camels. Muslims in contrast were
strikingly only 313 men in number, most ill equipped with only 2 horses and 70
camels. The Quraish took all the vantage points at Badr. Muslims could not get
any well or spring. Then Hubab bin Mundhir suggested to take a nearby spring;
the same night it rained heavily and small reservoirs were improvised to store
water” and He caused rain to descend on you from heaven, to clean you
therewith, to remove from you the stains of Satan, to strengthen your hearts
and to plant your feet fairly therewith” (VIII:II). The Muslims were thereafter
in full control of water, but the merciful Prophet (PBUH) allowed the enemies
to make use of water. When the two armies approached closer and were visible to
each other, the Prophet, it is quoted in Sahih Bukhari supplicated this, “O!
Allah! The proud and arrogant Quraish are already rebelling against you and
belying your messenger. O! Allah! I am waiting for your victory which you have
promised me. I beg you Allah to defeat the enemies”. The assistance of your
Lord and He answered you,
“I will assist you with a thousand of the
angels, ranks on ranks.” (VIII: 9)
began on the morning of Friday, 17th of Ramadan, 2 AH. Fully protected with
armour and shield, Otaibah, Shaibah and Al Walid bin Utbah stepped forward from
the ranks of Quraish. They started abusing Muslims, from the helpers, three
young men came out, but the Makkans’ said, since these lads were of no
consequence to them, they wanted the heads of their cousins. Upon this, prophet
(PBUH) asked Ubaidah, Hamza (his uncle) and Ali (his cousin) to go forward for
the combat. The three duels were short and quick. Hamza killed Shaibah, while
Ali killed Al Walid. Ubaidah was seriously wounded, but before he fell, Hamza,
with a sweep his sword severed the head of Otaibah. Ali and Hamza carried
Ubaidah back with his leg cut off. He died four days later. Following this,
there were several duels, in which the Makkans suffered heavily. Following this
single handed duels, the Makkans made a general attack on the Muslim army. Abu
Jahl and several prominent Makkans were slain. The rest of them took to their
heels and fled. The Muslims captured 70 of them as prisoners of war.
at Badr, with Divine help, was essentially victory of truth over falsehood.
“Allah helped you at Badr, when ye were a
contemptible little force, then fear Allah, thus ye may show your gratitude”
from Allah came, when the Prophet was loudly reciting the revelation, he had
multitude will be put to flight and they will show their backs (54: 45).
Historians have recorded that on the guidance
of Arch angel Jibrail, the Holy Prophet (PBUH) took a handful of dust and
gravel and cast it at the enemy and said, “Confusion seize their faces”. As he
flung the dust, a violent sandstorm blew into the eyes of the enemy. In
relation to this event, the Quran confirms it and says,
(Prophet PBUH) threw not when you did throw but Allah threw” (VIII: 17).
of divine help, at Badr has been beautifully summed by Martin Lings in his
biography of the prophet, “the presence of the angels was felt by all, as a
strength by the faithful and as a terror by the infidels, but that presence was
visible or audible to few, and in varying degrees. Two men of a neighbouring
Arab tribe had gone to take part so they hoped in the looting after the battle.
A cloud swept by them, a cloud filled with the neighing of stallions, and at
once all the men dropped instantly dead. “ His heart burst with fright” said
the one who lived to tell of it, judging from what his own heart had
felt….others had brief glimpses of the angels riding on horses whose hooves
never touched the ground, led by Jabrail wearing a yellow turban whereas the
turbans of other angels were white, with one end left streaming behind them.”
of the prisoners of war was decided upon by the receipt of their revelation,
not for a prophet to hold captives until he hath thoroughly subdued the land.
Ye look for temporal goods of this world, but Allah looketh to the Hereafter,
and Allah is exalted in might, wise (VIII: 67).
treatment was to be meted out to the unbelievers, the revelation also made
clear, that the prophet’s decision to spare the captives was accepted by Allah.
O! Apostle, say to those who are captives in
your hands, if Allah finds any good in your hearts, He will give you something
better than what has been taken from you; and He will forgive you, for Allah is
oft forgiving, most merciful (VIII:70).
The battle of Badr clearly established the
roots of Islam. The persecution of Muslims eased off-the number of Muslims only
confirmed to grow thereafter. May Allah bless all the martyrs of Islam.
Islam as A
Charter of Life: The Rightly Guided Caliphs — XIV
Aziz is a senior banker with interest in Religion.
Source: Pak Observer