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Abu Bakr – Battle of Khyber

The Jews. After having been driven away from Madina the Jews settled at Khyber The Jews were a cunning and crafty people, and they involved themselves in intrigues against the Muslims. The pact of Hudaibiya brought for the Muslims truce with the Quraish for a period of ten years. This meant that the Quraish could no longer openly aid the Jews against the Muslims. In spite of this situation there was no diminution in the hostility of the Jews against the Muslims, and they began to work for the formation of another coalition against the Muslims.

Battle of Khyber. To forestall the evil designs of the Jews, the Holy Prophet marched to Khyber in 629 C.E. with a force of 1,400 Muslims The Jews shut themselves in their forts. Some of these forts were very formidable with frowning walls built of the living rock. The Jews had ample provisions, and there was no shortage of arms with them. On the first day the Muslims led the attack against the Jews under the command of Abu Bakr. The Jews remained locked up in their forts, and there was no confrontation. The following day Umar commanded the Muslim forces. The Jews remained shut in their forts and there was no fight. On the third day Ali commanded the Muslim forces. Surprisingly the Jews came out of the forts that day and fought in the open. In a hand to hand fight that followed the Jews Were overpowered and they sought terms. The Jews agreed to submit to the suzerainty of the Muslims, and to pay them one half of the land produce,

Consequences of the battle of Khyber. The battle of Khyber had far reaching consequences. It established the dominance of the Muslim. in the Arabian peninsula. The Jews now became the subjects of the Muslim State. As the Quraish lost the support of the Jews, the battle of Khyber paved the way for the conquest of Makkah.

Zainab bin Harith. At Khyber, Zainab bin Harith a Jewish lady invited the Holy Prophet and his principal companions to a feast. Abu Bakr sat by the side of the Holy Prophet. The Holy Prophet first took a morsel of meat, and after chewing it threw it out saying, “The meat is poisoned.” Abu Bakr had so far held his hand but Bishr bin Bra, who sat next to the Holy Prophet on the other side ate a good deal of meat, and after a few moments he was dead. The feast ended in confusion. Zainab was put to explanation, and she admitted her guilt. She pleaded that she had poisoned the meat thinking that if Muhammad (peace be on him) was a prophet he would find that it was poisoned, and if he was not a prophet the world would get rid of him. Accounts of subsequent proceedings differ. According to one account, Zainab became a Muslim and was forgiven. According to another account she was beheaded.

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