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The Truth behind Taliban's Fatwa Justifying Killings of Innocent Civilians Part-8


Attacks on Non-Combatants in Trade Centres Is Un-Islamic

By Sohail Arshad, New Age Islam

28 Dec, 2012

In the fifth part of his article Shaikh Al Abeeri has declared it lawful killing non-combatant women and children who are mixed with the enemy in strong citadels or places where they cannot be distinguished from combatants. In support of his argument, he quotes the Hadith as follows:

“As Sa’ab bin Jasamah reported that when the holy Prophet (pbuh) was told that when the Mujahideen carried out attacks at night their women and children also came under the target, he (pbuh) said, “they are among them”. He also reported a Hadith in Muslim in which the holy Prophet (pbuh) said, “they are among their fathers”. In this context Al Abeeri has also quoted the commentaries of Imam Hajar Asqalani, Imam Nawawi, Ibn Athir and Ibn Qudama in which the unintentional killing of women and children during the attacks on the enemy has been declared lawful. He also quotes Imam Muslim who reportedly said that this Hadith justifies night raids and sudden attacks to catch the enemy unawares whom the message (of Islam) has already reached.

All the arguments quoted above have been produced to convey the point that if women and children are mixed with the enemy and are killed as a result of the attacks on the enemy, it is lawful according to Shariah. But on the contrary there are Hadiths that prohibit the killing of women and children during the war. There is a Hadith in this context:

Hadothj - Al-Muwatta 21.9

“Yahya related to me from Malik from Nafi from Ibn Umar that the Messenger of Allah(pbuh) saw the corpse of a woman who had been slain in one of the raids, and he disapproved of it and forbade the killing of women and children.”

There is also a Hadith in Sahih Bukhari vol 4 Hadith no. 257 that disapproves of the killing of women during war.

Narrated By ‘Abdullah: During some of the Ghazawat of the Prophet a woman was found killed. Allah's Apostle disapproved the killing of women and children.

A Hadith in Sunan Abu Dawood perhaps deals with the same incident in detail:

“Narated By Rabah ibn Rabi' : When we were with the Apostle of Allah (pbuh) on an expedition, he saw some people collected together over something and sent a man and said: See, what are these people collected around? He then came and said: They are round a woman who has been killed. He said: This is not one with whom fighting should have taken place. Khalid ibn al-Walid was in charge of the vanguard; so he sent a man and said: Tell Khalid not to kill a woman or a hired servant. (Declared authentic by Shaykh Nasr Al Deen Al Albani in Sunan Abu Dawud Hadothj no.2669)

A Hadith is reported in Malik’s Muwatta which says:

“Yahya related to me from Malik from Ibn Shihab that a son of Kab ibn Malik (Malik believed that ibn Shihab said it was Abd ar-Rahman ibn Kab) said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, forbade those who fought ibn Abi Huqayq (a treacherous jew from Madina) to kill women and children. He said that one of the men fighting had said, 'The wife of ibn Abi Huqayq began screaming and I repeatedly raised my sword against her. Then I would remember the prohibition of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, so I would stop. Had it not been for that, we would have been rid of her." (Book 21, Hadith no. 008)

In earlier parts too, we have quoted Hadiths and the instructions of Hadhrat Abu Bakr prohibiting the killing of women and children during wars.

However As Sa’ab bin Jasama’s Hadith in which the prophet (pbuh) said about the women and children of the enemy that ‘they are from among them” seems to be an exception and not the rule because in another Hadiths he has prohibited the killing of women and children and particularly he disapproved of the killing of a woman during one of the raids, which is reported in a number of Hadiths.

The very fact that the companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) asked his permission shows that the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to be strict regarding his prohibition on the killing of women and children. If the Muslims were in the habit of killing women and children they wouldn't have asked for the Prophet's opinion. Also notice that the companions did not ask the Prophet (pbuh) whether they could deliberately target the women and children. They merely mentioned that the women and children will be exposed to danger when they were attacking the men warriors.

But the important point here is that Al Abeeri chose to overlook Ibn Hajar Asqalani’s commentary on the same Hadiths in which he says:

“Another possibility is that the Hadith has been abrogated and that even if women and children accompany the enemy during war then they still should not be killed.” Al Abeeri overlooked this part of Asqalani because it did not serve his purpose or the purpose of the Taliban, rather negated it.

Hadiths prove that the holy Prophet (pbuh) did not permit night raids probably for the reason that it was difficult at night to distinguish women and children from combatant men. A Hadith in Sahih Bukhari testifies to this belief:

“Anas narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) reached Khaibar at night and it was his habit that whenever he reached the enemy at night, he will not attack them until it was morning. When it was morning, the Jews come out with their spades and baskets, and when they saw him they said, “Muhammad! By Allah! Muhammad and his army!” The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said, “Khaibar is destroyed, for whenever we approach a (hostile) nation (to fight), then evil will be the morning for those who have been warned.” 

Sheikh Al Abeeri here makes an illogical and unreasonable inference saying that the Hadith (They are among them) supports sudden attacks at night whereas the Hadiths about the war of Khaibar repudiates it as the holy Prophet (pbuh) had reached near Khaibar at night and if he (pbuh) considered it lawful to attack the enemy without informing them at night he (pbuh) would not have waited till morning.

In the later part of the article, Al Abeeri’s cat comes out of the bag. He says that when Muslims feel that they need to carry out a sudden attack, it is lawful for them to do so even if women and children and the old are killed as a result. Till now he had maintained that the killing of women and children is lawful along with the enemy but now he says that it is lawful to attack the strategic centres of the enemy (say, World Trade Centre, White House etc) to break their defence and for that purpose the killing of non-combatant women and children and men is justified and that it is heavier for the enemy than the killing of 20 thousand of their soldiers. In other words, according to Al Abeeri killing five thousand women, children and innocent men in trade centres and other ‘strategic centres’ of the enemy is more effective than killing their 20,000 soldiers to weild them a psychological and economic blow. According to him, attacking a business centre of the enemy and killing innocent women and children is lawful and permissible under the Sharia. Therefore, he makes the following conclusion:

“So the one (the Prophet (pbuh) who permitted the killings of innocent people because of not being able to be distinguished from the combatants will also permit the killings of the people in these attacks (attacks on Trade  Centre etc) because they too could not be distinguished in the ‘strategic centre’. It is clear that the World Trade Centre was a business centre and so there were no soldiers fighting the Taliban so the question of the women and non-combatants not being distinguished does not arise.

Actually, this part of the article has been written solely with the purpose of legitimizing and justifying the 9 11 terrorist attacks and the killing of the innocent people as a result and the argument in favour of it is founded on a Hadith about which even Imam Ibn Hajar Asqalani says that it may have been abrogated and that even if women and children accompany the enemy, they should not be killed.

Sohail Arshad is a regular columnist for New

URL of Part 1:–-part-1/d/9696


URL of Part 2:–-part-2/d/9711


URL of Part 3:


URL of Part 4:–-part-4/d/9768


URL of Part 5:


URL of Part 6:


URL of Part 7:,terrorism-and-jihad/sohail-arshad,-new-age-islam/the-truth-behind-taliban-s-fatwa-justifying-killings-of-innocent-civilians-part-7/d/9817