By Ali Sina
Imagine that you are a young woman living happily in your country and
practice your own religion. You love your faith and donít want to
change it. Suddenly the news breaks in that the enemy has invaded your
country. (For the sake of our imagery exercise think of them as
Israelis.) Their army rides into your country under the pretext that
only Judaism is the true religion of God and all other religions are
from Demon. Of course, just as all aggressors, they make an excuse
saying that your government has violated its peace accord and broken the
treaty. Therefore, they unilaterally decide that you and your people
must be punished. They come in with tanks and guns, just like the Serbs
in Kosovo, or Saddam Hussein in Kuwait. They kill your brothers and
father; burn your house. They show no mercy even to your orchards and
burn them too. They kill a lot of men and distribute the younger and
prettier women among their soldiers. Safiyah,
your friend who is a beautiful woman, and has lost her husband, father
and many of her relatives in this raid, is captured and before having
the chance to mourn for her loss she is taken to the commandant in chief
of the enemy's army who rapes her right in his tent.
Few days later, the war is over. There is an eerie calm in the streets.
But no-one ventures out. Every once in a while you hear the soldiersí
footsteps parading up and down the street and then again silence. Your
town is devastated, many are dead and their bodies are thrown into a
ditch quite unceremonially. You fear your brothers and father must be
among them. From your window you can see the smoke still rising from
palm plantations. There you had a patch of land and some trees. That was
the source of income for your family and many others in your town. Shops
are broken into and everything is gone. The soldiers have entered in
every house and taken whatever they wanted. You sit in a corner, cuddle
your knees and hide your head between them. Your mother is desolated
feeling only the pain that a mother can feel. All her young sons and her
husband are killed. She makes a heart clenching sound, more like the
howling of an animal in pain. You hear the cry of the 6-month-old child.
It is your neighborís child. He is hungry; her mother, now a widow,
cannot find food for her little children. You sit and stare at the blank
wall. You donít cry. Your senses are numb. You are in shock and cannot
understand why. Why this had to happen? You never hurt any one. Why
these soldiers did this to your family and people? In the middle of the
room your little two-year-old niece is playing quietly with her toy,
both her parents are dead, earlier she cried a lot, then, she got tiered
and fell asleep. Now she is an orphan. But she is oblivious to all that.
Your thought takes you to when you were a little girl. You remember
how happy were you playing with your dad. You were her little princess.
He used to carry you on his shoulders while you were holding to his
hair. You felt so tall up there. He was very proud of you. He had saved
some money for your marriage and he was making the necessary
preparations for your wedding. It was supposed to take place in a month.
He had also made a new suite for himself. He used to say he is going to
dance in it, at your wedding celebration. You remember how he used to
look forward to it. After all, you were his only daughter. It was just a
week ago when you wiped a tear from his face and kissed him on his chick
assuring him that although you are going to your new home you will
always remain her little daughter. You promised to come to visit him
every day. Now tears role down from your own cheeks and fall on your
lap. After the enemy had invaded your town, this is the first time you
have chance to sit quietly and cry.
At this time your neighbor walks in and informs you that the invading
army has ordered every one leave the town within four months. You ask,
with horror in your voice, where? We have no place to go! This is our
home, where can we go, how are we supposed to find a shelter?
He says that if you want to stay, the enemy wants you to cultivate the
land that once belonged to your family and give half of what you harvest
to them. You are confused. You donít know what to do. You ask the old
neighbor for advise. He lowers his head and says nothing. After a moment
of silence he says that if you choose to stay you will always be
classified as a second class citizen, i.e. neither you nor your future
children or grand children or any generation after them can ever vote or
participate in the government of your country. Furthermore, you will be
called filthy (najis) and must feel subdued with wiling submission.
He says that you will be allowed to practice your religion quietly, but
you cannot promote it. If you ever attempt to convert a Jew into Islam
you will be executed. As a Muslim you can marry a Jewish man and convert
to Judaism but if ever a Jewish girl marry a Muslim man that man will be
Well, now relax and be thankful that none of that ever happened to
you. You are lucky. But 1400 years ago, many Jewish young women, from
Kheibar, Medina and other towns had to live that saga. They had to
endure yet another humiliating experience that you cannot even
"imagine". They were taken as sex slaves by the Muslims and
were traded like cattle.
Muslims like to believe that Muhammad instituted jihad to promote the
message of God. The following hadithes however tell a different story.
They demonstrate that the real motive was money, land and women.
Bukhari Volume 3, Book 39, Number 521
Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Umar:
The Prophet concluded a contract with the people of Khaibar to utilize
the land on the condition that half the products of fruits or vegetation
would be their share. The Prophet used to give his wives one hundred
Wasqs each, eighty Wasqs of dates and twenty Wasqs of barley. (When 'Umar
became the Caliph) he gave the wives of the Prophet the option of either
having the land and water as their shares, or carrying on the previous
practice. Some of them chose the land and some chose the Wasqs, and 'Aisha
chose the land.
Bukhari Volume 3, Book 39, Number 527
Narrated Zaid bin Aslam from his father:
Umar said, "But for the future Muslim generations, I would have
distributed the land of the villages I conquer among the soldiers as the
Prophet distributed the land of Khaibar."
Bukhari Volume 3, Book 39, Number 531
Narrated Ibn 'Umar:
Umar expelled the Jews and the Christians from Hijaz. When Allah's
Apostle had conquered Khaibar, he wanted to expel the Jews from it as
its land became the property of Allah, His Apostle, and the Muslims.
Allah's Apostle intended to expel the Jews but they requested him to let
them stay there on the condition that they would do the labor and get
half of the fruits. Allah's Apostle told them, "We will let you
stay on thus condition, as long as we wish." So, they (i.e. Jews)
kept on living there until 'Umar forced them to go towards Taima' and
Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 364
Narrated Anas bin Malik:
Some people used to allot some date palm trees to the Prophet as gift
till he conquered Banu Quraiza and Bani An-Nadir, where upon he started
returning their date palms to them.
Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 365
Narrated Ibn Umar:
Allah's Apostle had the date-palm trees of Bani Al-Nadir burnt and cut
down at a place called Al-Buwaira. Allah then revealed: "What you
cut down of the date-palm trees (of the enemy) Or you left them standing
on their stems. It was by Allah's Permission." (59.5)
Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 366:
Narrated Ibn Umar:
The Prophet burnt the date-palm trees of Bani An-Nadir. Hassan bin
Thabit said the following poetic Verses about this event:-- "the
terrible burning of Al-Buwaira Has been received indifferently By the
nobles of Bani Luai (The masters and nobles of Quraish)." Abu
Sufyan bin Al-Harith (i.e. the Prophet's cousin who was still a
disbeliever then) replied to Hassan, saying in poetic verses:--
"May Allah bless that burning And set all its (i.e. Medina's) Parts
on burning fire. You will see who is far from it (i.e. Al-Buwaira) And
which of our lands will be Harmed by it (i.e. the burning of Al-Buwaira)."
Bukhari Volume 3, Book 39, Number 519:
The Prophet got the date palm trees of the tribe of Bani-An-Nadir burnt
and the trees cut down at a place called Al-Buwaira . Hassan bin Thabit
said in a poetic verse: "The chiefs of Bani Lu'ai found it easy to
watch fire spreading at Al-Buwaira."
Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 375:
We faced the pagans on that day (of the battle of Uhud) and the Prophet
placed a batch of archers (at a special place) and appointed 'Abdullah
(bin Jubair) as their commander and said, "Do not leave this place;
and if you should see us conquering the enemy, do not leave this place,
and if you should see them conquering us, do not (come to) help
us," So, when we faced the enemy, they took to their heel till I
saw their women running towards the mountain, lifting up their clothes
from their legs, revealing their leg-bangles. The Muslims started
saying, "The booty, the booty!"
Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 362:
Narrated Ibn Umar:
Bani An-Nadir and Bani Quraiza fought (against the Prophet violating
their peace treaty), so the Prophet exiled Bani An-Nadir and allowed
Bani Quraiza to remain at their places (in Medina) taking nothing from
them till they fought against the Prophet again) . He then killed their
men and distributed their women, children and property among the
Muslims, but some of them came to the Prophet and he granted them
safety, and they embraced Islam. He exiled all the Jews from Medina.
They were the Jews of Bani Qainuqa', the tribe of 'Abdullah bin Salam
and the Jews of Bani Haritha and all the other Jews of Medina.
Fight those who believe not in God nor the Last
Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by God and His
Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of
the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing
submission, and feel themselves subdued. (Q.
Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 314:
Narrated Abu Talha:
On the day of Badr, the Prophet ordered that the corpses of twenty four
leaders of Quraish should be thrown into one of the dirty dry wells of
Badr. (It was a habit of the Prophet that whenever he conquered some
people, he used to stay at the battle-field for three nights. So, on the
third day of the battle of Badr, he ordered that his she-camel be
saddled, then he set out, and his companions followed him saying among
themselves." "Definitely he (i.e. the Prophet) is proceeding
for some great purpose." When he halted at the edge of the well, he
addressed the corpses of the Quraish infidels by their names and their
fathers' names, "O so-and-so, son of so-and-so and O so-and-so, son
of so-and-so! Would it have pleased you if you had obeyed Allah and His
Apostle? We have found true what our Lord promised us. Have you too
found true what your Lord promised you? "'Umar said, "O
Allah's Apostle! You are speaking to bodies that have no souls!"
Allah's Apostle said, "By Him in Whose Hand Muhammad's soul is, you
do not hear, what I say better than they do." (Qatada said,
"Allah brought them to life (again) to let them hear him, to
reprimand them and slight them and take revenge over them and caused
them to feel remorseful and regretful.")