The Shiite accusations against Hadhrat Amr ibn Al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu), and the issue of Tahkeem (Arbitration)

The incident of Tahkeem (Arbitration) is one that is well-known amongst scholars. Unfortunately, the details of this incident have been mixed with many filthy and poisonous lies, and propagated with such strength, that for many it has become a fact-beyond-question. In the version that the Persian/Jewish-satanists ensured gets propagated, one finds a blatant attack being made upon the honour and noble character of Hadhrat ‘Amr ibn Al-‘Aas (radhiyallahu anhu), an illustrious companion of Rasulullah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam), a Sahabi who had the honour, after accepting Islam, of being invited by Rasulullah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  to all major consultations, and only after hearing his opinion would Rasulullah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) make a decision.

Unfortunately, due to the effort made behind the propaganda regarding him, many good Muslims and even certain scholars have become doubtful of his sincerity. Certain individuals have even gone to the extent of labeling him as a traitor, a liar, a deceiver and a cunning fox. (Naudhubillah)

Before proceeding further, it would be appropriate to first shed some light on the issue of Tahkeem, an arbitration that was carried out by Hadhrat Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (radhiyallahu anhu) and Hadhrat ‘Amr ibn Al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu), the conqueror of Egypt, to solve the dispute which had occurred between Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) and thus bring an end to years of in-fighting which had (according to what has been narrated) already claim the lives of over seven thousand believers, a figure which even the wars against the mighty Persian and Roman empires had not managed to produce.

When the battle of Siffin (A huge battle, in which Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) and the people of Iraq fought against Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) and the people of Shaam, due to Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) not being prepared to pledge allegiance to Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu), as long as the killers of Hadhrat Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu) were not brought to trail and punished) was brought to an abrupt halt, each party was asked to send an arbitator to to discuss the situation and find some solution to end the bloody conflict that had begun with the death of Hadhrat Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu). Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) sent Hadhrat Abu Musa Ashari (radhiyallahu anhu)  and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) sent Hadhrat Amr ibn Al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu).

The details generally given for what occurred during the arbitration process, are as follows:

(Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) and Hadhrat Amr ibn Al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) met, discussed  the matyer in great detailand finally decided to remove both Hadhrat Ali and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhuma) from their posts and leave the Ummah to then choose someone else for the Caliphate.

When the time came to make this announcement , Hadhrat Amr ibn al Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) requeated Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) to address the crowd first. Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu), after praising Almighty Allah and sending salutations upon Rasulullah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) announced that he had decided to remove both Hadhrat Ali  and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhuma) and leave the Ummahfree to elect a new leader.

After stepping back, Hadhrat Amr ibn ai Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) came forward and contrary to what had previously been decided, announced that he agrees with Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) as far as removing Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) from his post is concerned. As for Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) it is his decision to keep him in his post.

When Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) heard this he became furious and a heated argument broke out between the two. The two parties returned to their leaders, informing Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) of his removal from the seat of Caliphate, and giving Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) the glad tidings of  becoming Amirul-Mu’mineen.

When the party of Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) were informed of a decision, a huge number of them broke away from his party and put up a tent at a place known as Harura. This group came to be known as the Khawarij. Dissatisfied by the decision made by the arbitrators, the branded Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) kafir (disbeliever) and began making terrible attacks on his followers, going to the extent of cutting the bellies of Muslim women, when still alive. Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) made great attempts to bring them back under his authority, but when all efforts failed, he launched a severe attack on them, which resulted in their almost total annihilation)

These are the details which are generally in the minds of those who have a little knowledge about Islamic History, due to man’s quick preusal through the books of history, without any concern for what is authentic and what is not, what is acceptable and what is not, what cpuld be considered as probable and what could not.

Again, with just a little pondering over the above, keeping in mind the principles laid down for the acceptance of historical narrations, with the honour and integrity of the Sahabah (ridhwanallahu anhum) being at the prime, one shall quickly realize that much of the details of the above account are nothing but lies propagated by the satan-worshiping Persians, posing as soldiers in the armies of both parties.

A few of the events mentioned above, which obviously cannot be correct shall be listed below, intended merely as a guide, knowing full well that a thorough investigation of the incident shall surely result in more and more lies coming to the fore.

First Lie regarding the Tahkeem: 
The Khawarij were angered by the deceit of Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu)

It has generally been understood that the Khawarij broke away from Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) due to their dissatisfaction with the ruling of Hadhrat Amr bin al Aas (radhiyallahu anhu), whereas the reality is that they had expressed their anger and dissatisfaction with Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) from the very beginning, i.e. from the time they were informed that both parties had agreed to arbitration. Thus, their anger was never with the decision made by the arbitrators, rather it was with the fact that the Muslim Ummah had brought an end to the in-fighting, which had already resulted in the death of thousands.

These filthy people were never going to accept any decision made by the arbitrators, since disunity within theUmmah was their prime objective. The basis of their mission was to divide the entire Ummah and they were will aware that arbitration would burst their balloon. Criticizing the decision made by Hadhrat Amr bin al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu), and portraying him as deceitful, cunning politician, was done merely to formulate a better excuse for their breaking away from Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu).

The proof of this is what has been narrated in Al-Bidayah that when the decision was made to allow Hadhrat Abu Musa al-Ash’ari abd Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhuma) to arbitrate in the matter of the Ummah. Ash’ath ibn Qais was sent to inform all of this decision. When he came to the tribe of Banu Tamim and read the message to them, Urwah ibn Uzainah stood up angrily and shouted out, ‘How dare you allow man to decide in the matters of religion! Only Almighty Allah is the one who decides!’ Urwah then swiped his swprd towards Ash’ath, but missed, with the blade landing on the behind of the horse of Ash’ath.

The division in the army of Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) began at the event, with thousands seperating themselves and camping themselves in the area known as Harura. The evil perpetrated by this band finally compelled Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) to raise his sword against them, whereas just a few months ago, they formed a major part of his army.

In reality, it was this very group which was behind the assassination of Hadhrat Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu) and the wars of Jamal and Siffin. Until that moment they had been operating in the guise of pious men, constantly in prayer and recitation of the Qur’an. At this point in history their guise were thrown off, and their identity exposed. Rasulullah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) had warned the Ummah of this hidden threat, he (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) had mentioned that the first time the identity of these hypocrites shall get exposed is when they shall rebel against Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu).

Exactly as predicted by Rasulullah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam), these filthy group of hypocrites surfaced, and as predicted, were halted in their tracks and brought to their heels by Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) and his faithful Companions, but only after having wrecked great damage upon theUmmah. After the war, when remarked that the hypocrites have now been eradicated, Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) corrected him by saying that this group shall continue re-surfacing till the end of time, with the sole mission being to halt the progress of Islam and the Muslim  Ummah.  [refer to Tarikh al Baghdad]

Anyway, the actual purpose of mentioning the above is to show that irrespective of what decision the arbitrators would make months later, this group of hypocrites were never going to accept it, since their sole desire was to keep the Ummah divided, fighting amongst themselves.

During the incident of Tahkeem (arbitration) neither did Hadhrat Abu Musa Ash’ari (radhiyallahu anhu) make a cowardly decision , nor did Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) deceive. Rather their gathering brought a halt to years of infighting which had already claimed the lives of close to one hundred thousand. The only group angered by their decision was that of the hypocrites, and it was these very people who would later disfigure the entire issue of Tahkeem and have historians record it with fabricated versions.

Second Lie regarding the Tahkeem
Hadhrat Abu Musa and Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhuma) had discussed the matter in privacy, but Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhu), later, in front of all, spoke lies regarding the decision they had reached.

Narrations show that many Sahaba and prominent men were present at the meeting between Abu Musa Ash’ari and Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu), and each detail of the meeting was recorded on paper. How then it could ever be possible that Hadrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) to lie in front of the entire crowd, gathered to hear a decision, without a single person from those present standing up at that moment, or even after, and explaining to both parties that his announcement was not true.

The purpose of arbitration was to unite both parties, with both parties accepting the decision taken by the man they had elected on their behalf, if Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas had lied, why then did Hadhrat Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (radhiyallahu anhu) not just say so? The words of Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) could never demand the obedience of the army of Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu). Rather, that which Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) would decide for them, only that would they regard as binding and necessary to accept.

In arbitration matters, no one man can deceive, since each party shall only listen to his own member!

Third Lie regarding the Tahkeem
Both parties had initially agreed on removing both Hadhrat Ali and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhuma) from their posts, and to leave the Ummah free to choose their Caliph.

Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) had until now, never made the claim of being the Caliph. He himself had repeatedly said that when the killers of Hadhrat Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu) would be brought to trail, he would be the first to pledge allegiance to Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu). When Hadhrat Mu’awiyah never laid the claim for the Caliphate, what then would be the need for Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas and Hadhrat Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (radhiyallahu anhu) to decide to remove both and let the Ummah choose a new leader!.

He who was never in a post, how does one remove him from that post??!

It would not even be correct to say that perhaps what is meant is that he be removed from his position as governor over Sham, because the words attributed to Hadhrat Abu Musa and Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhuma) clearly state that they wanted to remove both, so that the ummah could again decide who should rule over them. In an Islamic State it is only the Caliph that rules over all. As for the governors, they shall remain governors  only as long as the Caliph allows, thus they have no rule of their own. To remove a governor would have no significance, since his post depends upon the Caliph. If the new Caliph would choose to keep him, he would remain. If the new Caliph would dismiss him, he would be dismissed.

A different scenario of the Tahkeem (arbitration) has been narrated in the Musannaf of Abdur Razzaq as well as in the Tarikh of Tabari, with amuch stronger chain of narrators (sanad). In this narration clear mention is made that after agreeing upon choosing a new Caliph, Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) presented the name of Hadhrat Abdullah ibn ‘Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) as a suitable candidate, but Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) did not agree. Thereafter, Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhu) presented the name of Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) as a suitable candidate for the Caliphate, but Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) did not agree. Both parties then separated, since they could not agree upon a new Caliph. Had there been any truth to the normally-famous version that they had initially agreed to remove both Hadhrat Ali and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhum) from their posts, what then would be the reason for Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhu) presenting the name of Hadhrat Mu’awiyah to Hadhrat Abu Musa as a suitable candidate for the Caliphate? After agreeing to fire one, would one ever present the same person’s name as a candidate for the position one had just fired him from??

The sanad of this narration is indeed much stronger than all the other narrations describing the Tahkeem (arbitration), thus to ignore it would truly be a great injustice to the field of proper research. The narration, as recorded by Abdul Razzaq, narrating from Abdullah ibn Ahmad, narratimg from his father Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal, narrating from Sulayman ibn Yunus, narrating from Zuhri is as follows:

In this narration a completely different picture has been painted, quite contrary to what is normally mentioned with regards to a great Sahabi lying and deceiving, an act which even the pagan Arabs would not do!

The above-mentioned text forms only a small portion of a lengthy narration, the crux of which is that when the time appointed for ‘The Arbitration’ drew near, the parties representing Hadhrat Ali and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhuma) arrived at the selected spot, known as Daumatul-Jundal. A special invitation was sent to Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Umar (radhiyallahu anhu), who had kept himself aloof from the conflict, and Hadhrat Abdullah bin Zubayr (radhiyallahu anhu) to attend and help the Ummah reunite. The invitation was accepted, and these two luminaries, accompanied by many of their friends and students, also presented themselves at the meeting. Nothing was discussed in privacy, The discussions that took place between Hadhrat Abu Musa and Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhuma) were witnessed by many. In fact, Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhu) ensured that all important points and issues on which consensus had been reached, be written down in paper.

The first Major decision upon which the consensus was reached was  that the present Caliph steps down from his post, affording the Ummah to the opportunity to unanimously choose a leader. The problem however arose when it came to choosing a new Caliph. Hadhrat Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (radhiyallahu anhu) proposed the name of Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Umar (radhiyallahu anhu), which Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhu) was not prepared to accept. Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhu) then proposed the name of Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu), which Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) was not prepared to accept. Thus the two parties separated without the arbitration proving unsuccessful.

(In this narration there is no mention of Hadhrat Amr (radhiyallahu anhu) deceiving or lying. Had the issue of preference been solely the strength of this narration  over all the other narrarions regarding the ‘Tahkeem’, that would have indeed been sufficient for it alone to be considered and all conflicting narrations be left aside. However that is not the case. Besides the fact that this narration is backed up with a much stronger chain of narrators, there are many other factors also which demand it be given preference and placed above all the other conflicting narrations. Among those factors are the following:

a) This narration refutes the accusation laid against Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) that he won the arbitration through deceit and blatant lies. Arguments and harsh words on many occasions occurred between the Sahaba (ridhwanallahu anhum), since they were the children of the same household, i.e they were all from the illustrious faternity of the Sahaba (radhiyallahu anhum) and were not bound to those laws of respect which we have been commanded to observe for the Sahaba (radhiyallahu anhum). Prince’s, in the court of the King, may criticize, argue, and even fight against each other, but dare any man to from out of the royal family attempt to slap a prince or merely look at him with contempt! The Sahaba (radhiyallahu anhum), due to the fervour each one had for establishing the truth, would many a time issue harsh word  against his fellow Sahabi brother, bit never would he dare lie or deceive.

The hearts of the Sahaba (radhiyallahu anhum), as mentioned in the Qur’aan, have already passed the test of Imaan. The purity of their hearts had received  certificates from the highest of quarters, i.e. Almighty Allah himself. Only that mind which has not as yet understood the strength of Almighty Allah’s declaration of purity  could ever conceive such heart to still be filthy, hypocritical traits such as deceit, lies, etc.

Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) occupied a most prominent place amongst the Sahaba. After his accepting Islam, Rasulullah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) included him amongst his selected confidants,  with whom he (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) use would consult all the matter of importance. During the era’s of Hadhrat Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhuma), he played a leading role as a leader in the conquests of prominent areas like Egypt, al-Aqsa etc.

Could any sane mind can ever imagine a Sahabi (radhiyallahu anhu) of this calibre concluding his chapter in the glorious history of Islamic heroes with an act of deception, and that too, not just deceiving a few individuals or friends bit rather the entire Muslim Ummah, the illustrious Sahaba around him, and all those who until that time had viewed him as a true leader and a hero of Islam?!

Could any sane mind can ever imagine a Sahabi (radhiyallahu anhu) of this calibre concluding his chapter in the glorious history of Islamic heroes causing untold harm to the cause of Islam, that Islam for which he had on so many occasions thrown himself at the tip of poisonous swords without a concern for his life? Na’audhubillah! The Sahaba (ridhwanallahu anhum) were men of true purity and piety and Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) was from amongst the elite of this illustrious fraternity.

b) Logically also, deception from the side of Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas (radhiyallahu anhu) cannot be conceived possible. The reason being that he only played the role of one member from the panel of two, chosen to artbitrate between two major forces. Even if he lied as to what had been agreed betweem him and Hadhrat Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (radhiyallahu anhu), his lie would hold no effect, since the party of Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) would obviously only accept as true what Hadhrat Abu Musa (radhiyallahu anhu) would report.

c) History itself shows that the arbitration never led to the appointment of Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu) as Caliph. Rather, after assassination of Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu), Hadhrat Hasan ibn Ali was chosen as Caliph, and it was he who handed over the Caliphate to Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu), what then was the purpose of Hadhrat Amr ibn al-Aas deceiving and lieing to Hadhrat Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (radhiyallahu anhu), and what did it achieve? The only logical answer would be that there was no deception and no lie. Both the parties attempted choosing a new Caliph, but they were unable to reach any consensus. The two parties thus returned to their lands, without agreeing upon a new leader.

Despite no agreement being reached, fighting between the two parties however came to an halt, due to a pact made soon thereafter between Hadhrat Ali and Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhuma), with each promising not to launch any attack on the land of other. Iraq  will be the land of Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) and Sham will be the Land of Hadhrat Mu’awiyah (radhiyallahu anhu).


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