Dhat-ur-Riqa’ Invasion (7 A.H.) and other Invasions

Having controlled two powerful sides of the Confederates alliance, the Prophetﷺ started preparations to discipline the third party, 1.e., the desert bedouins, who took Najd for habitation, and continued in their usual practices of looting and plundering, Unlike the Jews of Khaibar and people of Makkah, they had a liking for living in the wilderness dispersed in scattered spots hence the difficulty of bringing them under control, and the uselessness of carrying out preventive campaigns against them. However, the Prophet ﷺ was determined to put an end to this unacceptable situation and called the Muslims around him to get ready to launch a decisive campaign against those harassing rebels. Meanwhile it was reported to him that Banu Muharib and Banu Tha’labah of the Ghatafan tribe were gathering an army in order to encounter the Muslims. The Prophetﷺ are not proceeded towards Najd at the head of 400 or 700 men, after he had appointed Abu Dharr Radiallahu anhoo in another version, ‘Uthman bin Affan Radiallahu anhoo administer the affairs of Madinah during his absence. The Muslim fighters penetrated deep into their land until they reached a spot called Nakhlah where they came across some bedouins of Ghatafan, but no fighting took place because the latter had agreed to go into reconciliation with the Muslims. The Prophet ﷺ his followers that day in the prayer.’ Sahih Al-Bukhart 1/407, 408, 2/593.

Al-Bukhari, on the authority of Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari de la narrated that they set out on an expedition with Allâh’s Messengerﷺ We were six in number and had (with us) only one camel which we rode turn by turn. Our feet were injured. My feet were so badly injured that my nails came off. We, therefore, bandaged our feet with rags, so this invasion was called Dhat-ur-Riqa’ .

It was reported that the Prophetﷺ took the sword when it had fallen down and asked him: “Who would hold me back from killing you now?” The man said: “You (the Prophet are the best one to hold a sword.” The Prophetﷺ asked the man if he would testify to the Oneness of Allah and the Messengership of Muhammad. The bedouin answered that he would never engage in a fight against him, nor would he ally people fighting the Muslims.

The Prophet ﷺ the man free and let him go to his people to say to them that he had seen the best one among all people.

A woman from the polytheists was taken prisoner in the context of this battle. Her husband, on hearing the news. swore he would never stop until he had shed the blood of a Muslim. Secretly at night, he approached the camp of the Muslims when he saw two guards stationed there to alert the Muslims against any emergency. He shot the first one with an arrow. ‘Abbad bin Bishr was observing the prayer, he did not stop prayer and simply pulled it out. Then he was shot by two other arrows but he did not interrupt his prayer. After he had done the closing salutations, he awakened his companion ‘Ammar bin Yasir who protested that he should have alerted him to which the latter replied that he was half way through a Chapter and did not like to interrupt it.’

The victory at the Invasion of Dhat-ur-Riqa’ had a tremendous impact on all the bedouins. It cast fear into their hearts and made them too powerless to annoy the Muslim society in Madinah They began to adjust in the prevailing situation and prepared themselves to accept the new geo-political conditions working in favor of the new religion. Some of them even embraced Islam and took an active part in the conquest of Makkah and the battle of Hunain, and received their due shares of the war booty.

The Nabi Pak ﷺ returned from this battle in Shawwal of the year 7 A.H. From that time onward, the anti-Islam tripartite coalition had been controlled, and peace and security prevailed. The Muslims then started to put right any political imbalance and fill in the small gaps that still created unrest here and there in the face of the great drive of Islamization that enveloped the whole area. We could in this context mention some of these incidental clashes which pointed markedly to the ever-growing power of the Muslim society:

  1. A platoon headed by Ghalib bin ‘Abdullah Al-Laithili in Safar or in Rabi’ul-Awwal 7 A.H., was dispatched to check the provocative behavior of Bani Al-Mulawwih. The Muslims managed to kill a large number of the enemy soldiers and captured a great deal of booty. A large army of polytheists pursued them but floods hindered the pursuit, and the Muslims managed to withdraw in safety
  2. The incident of Husma occurred in Jumadi Ath-Thani of the year 7 A.H.
  3. ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab is, at the head of a 30-soldier group, set out to a spot called Turbah in Sha’ban 7 A.H. to discipline the people of Hawazin. He no sooner arrived at their habitation that they fled for their lives.
  4. Thirty men ‘with Bashir bin Sa’d Al-Ansari come headed for Bani

Murrah in Shaban 7 A.H., in Fadak area. He killed a large number of the enemy and selzed a lot of their camels and cattle.

On his way back, the enemy gathered up forces and overtook the Muslims at night . They showered Bashir and his men with arrows, and killed all the Muslims except Bashir, who took refuge in Fadak and stayed with the Jews there until his wounds healed.

  1. Ghalib bin ‘Abdullah Al-Laithi at the head of a platoon of 130 men, launched an attack against Bani ‘Uwal and Bani ‘Abd bin Tha’labah in Ramadan 7 A.H. They killed some of the enemy’s men and captured their cattle and camels.

‘Usamah bin Zaid killed Mirdas bin Nahik, a polytheist, but after he had pronounced the testimony of Allâh’s Oneness to which incident the Nabi Pakﷺ commented addressing his Companions: “Would you rip open his heart to detect whether he is truthful or a liar?”

  1. A thirty-horseman group headed by ‘Abdullah bin Rawahah marched towards Khaibar on reports that Asir (or Bashir bin Rizam) was raising the ranks of Bani Ghatafan to attack the Muslims.

They managed to persuade that Jew to follow them to Madinah encouraging him that the Nabi Pak would institute him as a ruler of Khaibar.

On their way back there took place a sort of misunderstanding that gave rise to fierce fighting between the two parties resulting in the death of Asir and the thirty men with him.

  1. In Shawwal 7 A.H., Bashir bin Sa’d Al-Ansari marched towards Yemen and Jabar at the head of 300 Muslim fighters to control a large mob of polytheists who gathered to raid the outskirts of Madinah.

Bashir and his men used to march at night and hide during the day until they reached their destination. Having heard about the advent of the Muslims, the polytheists fled away leaving behind a large cash of booty and two men who later embraced Islam in Madinah.

  1. In the year 7 A.H., shortly before the Compensatory ‘Umrah, a man called Jusham bin Mu’awiyah came to a spot called Grabah where he wanted to gather the people of Qals and entice them into fighting the Muslims.

The Nabi Pakﷺ on hearing these reports, dispatched Abu Hadrad Radiallahu anhoo with two men to see to the situation. Abu Hadrad. through a clever strategy, managed to defeat the enemy and capture a lot of their cattle.

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