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It's much easier to act as if critics of Islam have a problem with Muslims as people than it is to accept the uncomfortable truth that Islam is different


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What can we learn about
Islam from this woman?

Myths of Muhammad

The Myth:

Muhammad Never
Killed Captives

"Our Prophet (peace be upon him) always showed the greatest mercy to those taken captive in battle.  No hostages were ever harmed."

The Truth:

Islamic terrorists take and execute hostages on an almost daily basis.  While we are often assured that this practice has “nothing to do with Islam,” Muhammad did, in fact, execute prisoners of war and other hostages.

Following the Battle of Badr, several defenseless Meccans were slaughtered by Muhammad’s companions.  These included a man named Umayya and his young son, who were taken prisoner by a Muslim (a former friend who tried to protect them), but were then set upon by a mob before they could be escorted to safety:
“I said (would you attack) my prisoners?  But... The people formed a ring around us as I was protecting him.  Then a man drew his sword and cut off his son’s foot so that he fell down and Umayya [the boy’s father] let out a cry such as I have never heard… They hewed them to pieces with their swords until they were dead.” (Ibn Ishaq/Hisham 449)
Another heartwarming account of Islamic chivalry during the same battle concerns Abu Jahl,  one of Muhammad’s arch-enemies at Mecca.  He met his death as he lay defenseless.  In this case, two Muslims took the opportunity to administer the death blow:
Mu’awwidh passed Abu Jahl as he lay there helpless and smote him until he left him at his last gasp. (Ibn Ishaq/Hisham 451)

Another Muslim named Abdullah then came by and put his foot on Abu Jahl’s neck and taunted him before decapitating him:
Then I cut off his head and brought it to the apostle saying, “This is the head of the enemy of Allah, Abu Jahl.”… I threw his head before the apostle and he gave thanks to Allah. (Ibn Ishaq/Hisham 451).

Apparently these companions of Muhammad were unaware that "Islam is against" killing captives.   But who could really blame them?  Not only did the prophet of Islam praise them for the slaughter, he also ordered the death of another captive brought before him.

Uqba bin Abu Mu’ayt pled for his life:
“When the apostle ordered him to be killed, Uqba said, “But who will look after my children, O Muhammad?”  [Muhammad’s reply] “Hell.”  The man was put to death. (Ibn Ishaq/Hisham 458, also Abu Dawud 2686)

Other captives were ransomed, but Uqba received special treatment because he had mocked Muhammad at Mecca.  His crime was that he had thrown the entrails of a dead animal on Muhammad’s back as he was praying, to the amusement of other Meccans (Muslim 4422, Ibn Ishaq/Hisham 277).  The prophet of Islam determined that this fraternity prank was worth killing over, and it became the first of several other occasions in which people were slain on Muhammad’s order merely for mocking him.

Interestingly, it appears that Muhammad regretted not killing all of his captives, instead of ransoming a few.  Verse 8:67 of the Qur’an was “revealed” in the aftermath of Badr and says “It is not for any prophet to have captives until he hath made slaughter in the land.”

The prophet of Islam went on to execute many other captives, most notoriously the 800 men and boys taken prisoner at Qurayza.  His men also brutally murdered an elderly woman named Umm Qirfa after taking her prisoner following a raid on the tribe of Banu Fazara.  According to al-Tabari she was killed by, “putting a rope to her two legs and to two camels and driving them until thy rent her in two.”  (The woman’s daughter was then doled out to one of her Muslim killers).

While it is common to hear Muslims claim that their religion is “against” killing hostages, the actual history of Islam proves that nothing could be further from the truth

Further Reading:


Myths of Muhammad Index

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