Category Archives: Islamic Spain

The End Of Islamic Garnata

After a series of negotiations and assurances that the Christians would safeguard the agreement that was about to be signed, the Garnata Capitulations were signed in 1491, (otherwise known as The Treaty of Garnata), and in 1492 the Christian forces took over the city, and thus Islamic rule of Andalus ended after almost 780 years of continuous rule. Albeit this did not mean that 1492 marked the end of the Muslim presence in Andalus, as they remained for another hundred or more years or so. As for Abu Abdullah he ended up dying in obscurity fleeing from Andalus to Morocco.

Islam flourished in Andalus, but due to our disunity and worldy desires, we lost Andalus in a mere 780 years, wherein not even a trace of it exists in modern day Spain. The rulers then were not unlike the rulers now and likewise the people of those lands not unlike us. However, the history of Andalus that we’re interested in, in this project is not the above history. Nay, it is actually what happened after the Treaty of Garnata that is of interest to us, in that it applies to many a situation of Muslims today, be it the first, (or second), generation western Muslim who are living in Dar Al Kufr , by virtue of birth or immigration due to economic reasons, (and even political asylum seekers), and of those Muslims in ‘Muslim’ countries, and their thoughts in relation to their rulers and their view of the Kuffaar.

The Muslims of Andalus were assured by the Christian Kings that all treaty capitulations shall be upheld and Muslims could continue to practice as they wish, run their Shariah courts and in general have freedoms that, by today’s standards, would seem magnanimous on the part of Christian conquerors.

However, within ten years they broke the treaty by creating their own pretext and thus began forcefully converting Muslims, destroying Arabic books, (including the Quran), banning the Arabic language and finally killing or imprisoning people that violated any of their bans on Islam by way of the Inquisition and its Inquisitorial courts which bear an uncanny resemblance to the CIA created ‘Extraordinary Rendition’ program and its protocols, (wherein people would disappear all of a sudden, taken to an unknown location , without habeas corpus rights being granted to the families of the detainee, and were detained for extended periods of time while subjected to psychological and physical torture for alleged acts of ‘terrorism’). Muslims had to increasingly use
Aljamiado (Al Ajamiyya), to communicate instead of Arabic and lie to Christians about their faith while secretly maintaining their Salat, fasting, Zakat and even Hajj during these trying times.

At this juncture, it would be fitting to discuss Al Ajamiyya or Aljamiado. In our context, Aljamiado refers to writings which utilizes the Arabic script for transcribing Romance languages such as Spanish. The most common reason for its increasing popularity in the 16 century is thought to be due to the restrictions placed upon the use of Arabic from the mid 16 centuries, Muslims had to adapt to these restrictions by using Castillian.

However, this explanation by itself would be inaccurate. It cannot be stressed enough that Ajamiyya had been in use since the 14 and 15 , (perhaps even earlier), century due to the fact that Muslims that were living anywhere other than Garnata, (such as Arghun (Aragon), Valencia and Castile), started forgetting their Arabic and acclimatizing gradually, but increasingly, to Spanish. Some of the works that have been unearthed in Spain and elsewhere in Ajamiyya are for the most part meant for the common people and serve an educational role to educate the Muslims of Spain about Islam, usually in a summarized format, (therefore making these books easy to hide from the prying eyes of the Inquisitors). Some of the non Islamic works in
Ajamiyya that have been found are as follows:

“Prose narratives (divisible into romances, short stories, and legends): Rekontamiento del rey Alisandere (Story of King Alexander), Historia de los amores de París y Viana, Libro de las batallas, Leyenda de ‘Ali ibnu abi Talib y las cuarenta doncellas (Legend of ‘Ali ibnu abi Talib and the Forty Damsels), El baño de Zarieb, and Leyenda de Yuçuf (Legend of Joseph).

Eschatological texts: Estoria del día del juicio (Story of the Day of Judgment) and Ascención de Mahoma a los cielos
(Ascension of Muhammad to the Heavens). Biblical legends:

La leyenda de Ibrahim (The Legend of Abraham), Historia del sacrificio de Ismael (Story of the Sacrifice of Ishmael), Las demandas de Muça (The Questions of Moses), Leyenda de Muça con la paloma y el halcón (Legend of Moses with the Dove and the Falcon), Muerte de Muça (Death of Moses),
Historia de Ayub (Story of Job), Recontamiento de Çulayman
(Story of Solomon), Nacimiento de Iça (Birth of Jesus), Jesús resucita a Sem hijo de Noe (Jesus Resuscitates Shem, Son of Noah), and Historia del rey Jesús (Story of King Jesus).

Travel literature: Itinerario de España y Turquía (Itinerary of Spain and Turkey) and Avisos para el caminante (Warnings for the Walker). Didactic prose: Los castigos de ‘Ali (The Moral Teachings of ‘Ali), Los castigos de Alhaquim a su hijo
(The Moral Teachings of al-Hakim for His Son), Los castigos
del hijo de Edam (The Moral Teachings of the Son of Edam),
Libro y translado de buenas doctrinas y castigos y buenas
costumbres (Book of Good Doctrine, Moral Teachings, and Good Habits), and Libro de predicas y examplos y doctrinas para medecinar el alma y amar la otra vida y aborrecer este mundo (Book of Preachings, Exempla, and Doctrine to Heal the Soul, Love the Life to Come, and Abhor This World).

Treatises on popular beliefs and superstitions: Libro de dichos maravillosos (Book of Marvelous Sayings), Libro de las suertes
(The Book of Fortunes), and Libro de los sueños (Book of Dreams).

Anti-Christian and anti-Jewish polemics: Disputa contra los judíos y disputa contra los cristianos (Dispute against the Jews and Dispute against the Christians) and
Preguntas de unos judíos a Muhammad (Questions of Some Jews to Muhammad)… Poetic works: Poema de Yuçuf, Almadha de alabança al annabi Muhammad (Poem of Praise for the Prophet Muhammad), Historia genealógica de Mahoma
(Genealogical History of Muhammad), and Coplas en alabança del-adín del-aliçlam (Verses in Praise of the Religion of Islam), (Barletta, 8).”

One of the more famous Muslim scholars of the Mudajjan and ‘Morisco’ period is Isa Al Shaadhili. He was a faqih and the
qadi of the Jama’a of Al Shaqoubiyah, (Segovia), in Castile, during the middle of the 15 century CE. He was one of the Ahl Al Dajn, as were the rest of the community that was with him in Castile. He was Maliki by way of his fiqh as was virtually everyone in the Maghrib and Andalus, (until the Uthmani forces took control during the 16 century CE, wherein the population of Ahnaaf/Hanafis began to increase). As is evident from his name he was a Sufi of the Shadhiliyya order which is the most prevelant in the Maghrib today and was then too, along with the Tijaniyya order.  In 1462 CE, he wrote his most famous book, Breviario Sunni , (‘Introduction to the Sunnah’), which was a manual designed to aid Muslims in their daily practice of Islam. He also had the infamy of having cooperated with the Christian authorities of Segovia to translate the Quran from Arabic to Castilian.

As for the religious works that were translated into Spanish were:

1. Tafsir of Ibn Ali Zaminin

2. Tafsir Ghareeb Al Quran of Al Sijistani

3. Ibn Salama’s work on Ayaat that are mansukh , (abrogated)

4. Some works on different modes of Qiraat, even some that argue the difference between Warsh and Qaloon

5. Kitaab Fihi Tafseer Mukhtalif Al Hadith by Ibn Qutayba

6. The Forty Hadith of Imam Ghazali

7. Kitaab Shihab Akbar by Al Quda’i

8. Kitab Anwar Al Saniyya by Ibn Juzayy

9. B’ad Al Khalq Wa Qisaas Al Anbiya by Al Farisi

10. Kitab Al Anwar by Abu Al Hassan Al Bakri

11. Rai’ Al Durar by Al Qazwini

12. Al Risaala by Ibn Zayd Al Qayrawani 1

3. Kitab Al Istadhkaar by Abd Al Barr Al Namari

14. Kitab Al Iqtisaad fee Al Itiqaad by Imam Ghazali

And many more. Below is an example of Ajamiyya text, (the following is a Spanish translation of the Quran written in Arabic script):


In other contexts, the word aljamiado is sometimes used for other non-Semitic language written in Arabic letters. For example, some Serbo-Croatian, Bosnian and Albanian texts written in Arabic script during the Ottoman period have been referred to as aljamiado.

A very interesting example of the principle of writing another language in Arabic script is
Xiao’erjing , which is the method by which Hui Chinese Muslims use to write Mandarin Chinese in Arabic script. Formerly the Dungan descendants of these Chinese Muslims in Central Asia also used this method of writing until the Soviet Union banned it by enacting writing reforms which forced the Dungan people to replace Xiao’erjing with a Roman script and later a Cyrillic one, which they continue to use until today. However, in our discussion, we are only referring to Spanish written in Arabic script.


Returning to the Muslims of Andalus, it must be clear, and it will be discussed, that Christians in their treachery had deliberately designed a method by which the Muslims in Andalus would not be able to escape to the Maghrib and would thus, by their calculations, have to accept Christianity and enlarge the number of Christian followers in the land. One hundred and fifty years later from the Treaty of Garnata, after two major insurgencies, the resilience of Muslims holding on to their faith and their refusal to become Murtad , (apostate), (even when their nobles were the first in line to apostasize and safeguard their wealth), the Spanish decided to expel all the Muslims, (by now they were called Moriscos), and admit their defeat at the hands of a few hundred thousand oppressed souls.

A mention should be made of an issue that deserves our attention, and that is the question that is on the mind of most Muslims when they touch this topic, that if they converted, then how can they be Muslim (speaking of the period of 1502 where Mudajjan status had ended all over spain and everyone was forced to convert and called Morsico’s)? It is a question which scholars have tussled over and were tussling with at the time over how to rule on this question. In hindsight and availability of documents, it was seen that what was imposed on the Muslims of Andalus, (who either wanted to leave and weren’t able to due to poverty and not able to afford the transport off the peninsula or were captured before reaching the ports, and not those who deliberately desired to stay in Andalus, unless they were attempting to regroup and lead an insurgency to liberate Andalus from the Kuffaar), by its very definition was Ikrah in its textbook definition, (i.e. compulsion and coercion).

Therefore if we look at what the scholars have said in regard to a situation like this, we can see that there were grounds for them to pretend to convert, while still being Muslim, ( Taqiyyah or dissimulation). Imam Nawawi in his Arba’ain in Hadith number 39:

ﻋَﻦِ ﺍﺑْﻦِ ﻋَﺒَّﺎﺱٍ ﺭَﺿِﻲَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻋَﻨْﻪُ ﺃَﻥَّ ﺭَﺳُﻮﻝَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﺻَﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻋَﻠَﻴْﻪِ ﻭَﺳَﻠَّﻢَ ﻗَﺎﻝَ :
ﺇﻥَّ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪَ ﺗَﺠَﺎﻭَﺯَ ﻟِﻲ ﻋَﻦْ ﺃُﻣَّﺘِﻲ ﺍﻟْﺨَﻄَﺄَ ﻭَﺍﻟﻨِّﺴْﻴَﺎﻥَ ﻭَﻣَﺎ ﺍﺳْﺘُﻜْﺮِﻫُﻮﺍ ﻋَﻠَﻴْﻪِ
‏( ﺣَﺪِﻳﺚٌ ﺣَﺴَﻦٌ، ﺭَﻭَﺍﻩُ ﺍﺑْﻦُ ﻣَﺎﺟَﻪ، ﻭَﺍﻟْﺒَﻴْﻬَﻘِﻲُّ “ ﺍﻟﺴُّﻨَﻦ ‏)

Ibn Abbas, (radiyAllāhu ‘anhu) , reported that the Messenger of Allāh, ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ), said:
“Truly Allāh has for my sake pardoned the mistakes and forgetfulness of my community, and for what they have done under force or duress.” [1]

The Ulema cite in support of this Hadith, (Along with Surah Al Ahzab, Ayah 5 and Surah Baqarah, Ayah 286), cite this
ayah :

ﻣَﻦ ﻛَﻔَﺮَ ﺑِﺎﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻣِﻦ ﺑَﻌْﺪِ ﺇﻳﻤَـﻨِﻪِ ﺇِﻻَّ ﻣَﻦْ ﺃُﻛْﺮِﻩَ ﻭَﻗَﻠْﺒُﻪُ ﻣُﻄْﻤَﺌِﻦٌّ ﺑِﺎﻹِﻳﻤَـﻦِ ﻭَﻟَـﻜِﻦ ﻣَّﻦ ﺷَﺮَﺡَ ﺑِﺎﻟْﻜُﻔْﺮِ ﺻَﺪْﺭًﺍ ﻓَﻌَﻠَﻴْﻬِﻢْ ﻏَﻀَﺐٌ ﻣِّﻦَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻭَﻟَﻬُﻢْ ﻋَﺬَﺍﺏٌ ﻋَﻈِﻴﻢٌ 2

Whoever disbelieves in Allāh after his belief – except one who was forced while his heart is at peace with the faith – but whoever opens their breasts to disbelief, on them is wrath from Allāh, and theirs will be a terrible torment

Ibn Kathir States in the Ayah regarding “except one who was forced while his heart is at peace with the faith:”

“ This is an exception in the case of one who utters statements of disbelief and verbally agrees with the Mushrikin because he is forced to do so by the beatings and abuse to which he is subjected, but his heart refuses to accept what he is saying, and he is, in reality, at peace with his faith in Allāh and His Messenger. The scholars agreed that if a person is forced into disbelief, it is permissible for him to either go along with them in the interests of self-preservation, or to refuse, as Bilal did when they were inflicting all sorts of torture on him, even placing a huge rock on his chest in the intense heat and telling him to admit others as partners with Allāh. He refused, saying, “Alone, Alone.” And he said, “By Allāh, if I knew any word more annoying to you than this, I would say it.” May Allāh be pleased with him. Similarly, when the Liar Musaylimah asked Habib bin Zayd Al-Ansari, “Do you bear witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allāh” He said, “Yes.” Then Musaylimah asked, “Do you bear witness that I am the messenger of Allāh” Habib said, “I do not hear you.” Musaylimah kept cutting him, piece by piece, but he remained steadfast insisting on his words. It is better and preferable for the Muslim to remain steadfast in his religion, even if that leads to him being killed, as was mentioned by Al-Hafiz Ibn ‘Asakir in his biography of ‘Abdullah bin Hudhafah Al-Sahmi, one of the Companions. He said that he was taken prisoner by the Romans, who brought him to their king. The king said, “Become a Christian, and I will give you a share of my kingdom and my daughter in marriage.”

‘Abdullah said: “If you were to give me all that you possess and all that Arabs possess to make me give up the religion of Muhammad even for an instant, I would not do it.” The king said, “Then I will kill you.” ‘Abdullah said, “It is up to you.” The king gave orders that he should be crucified, and commanded his archers to shoot near his hands and feet while ordering him to become a Christian, but he still refused. Then the king gave orders that he should be brought down, and that a big vessel made of copper be brought and heated up. Then, while ‘Abdullah was watching, one of the Muslim prisoners was brought out and thrown into it, until all that was left of him was scorched bones. The king ordered him to become a Christian, but he still refused. Then he ordered that ‘Abdullah be thrown into the vessel, and he was brought back to the pulley to be thrown in. ‘Abdullah wept, and the king hoped that he would respond to him, so he called him, but ‘Abdullah said, “I only weep because I have only one soul with which to be thrown into this vessel at this moment for the sake of Allāh; I wish that I had as many souls as there are hairs on my body with which I could undergo this torture for the sake of Allāh.”

According to some reports, the king imprisoned him and deprived him of food and drink for several days, then he sent him wine and pork, and he did not come near them. Then the king called him and asked him, “What stopped you from eating” ‘Abdullah said, “It is permissible for me (under these circumstances), but I did not want to give you the opportunity to gloat…”

So as Imam Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) says, “It is better and preferable for the Muslim to remain steadfast in his religion, even if that leads to him being killed…” indicating a preference to be steadfast and be put to death, (as in the case of Habib bin Zayd Al Ansari), than apostasizing. However, as we see in the case of Abdullah Hudhaifa Al Shami, he says, “It is permissible for me (under these circumstances), but I did not want to give you the opportunity to gloat.” So it can be ascertained doing things such as eating pork and drinking wine are permissible under compulsion but not the preferable mode of action as the first recourse.

Another view or category is the distinction between speech and actions. In terms of speech, a person might be forced and allowed to say something that is not allowable. The scholars say he should not practice taqiyah . Taqiyah means to say or do something which you do not believe in and are not satisfied with. This only applies to sayings and not actions. Regarding this issue there is an agreement among the Muslim scholars. They say that whoever is forced to say something that is not allowed in shari’ah , then he will be allowed to say it – he will not be regarded or considered as ‘saying’ it. There is another condition that the scholars set.

They say that whenever a person is put into ikrah or duress, the duress should be definite and most likely to happen and not just something the person imagines or assumes. He has to be sure. Through proofs such as these Scholars who understood the situation of the Andalusis issued fatawa stating that, (if the Muslims are truly under ikrah as mentioned above), they can state that they are christian but in their heart not believe, play with words to make statements that are favorable to Christians but neither are outright shirk and kufr . These ahadith and ayaat are, if you will, part of the camp of people that did not, or could not resist the Christians or were unable to leave the land due to genuine Ikrah .

However, on the other hand in Surah Al Nisaa,’ ( Ayah 97), Imam Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) clarifies the conditions of remaining in mushrik lands without putting oneself into a sinful position:

ﺇِﻥَّ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﺗَﻮَﻓَّﺎﻫُﻢُ ﺍﻟْﻤَﻶﺋِﻜَﺔُ ﻇَﺎﻟِﻤِﻲ ﺃَﻧْﻔُﺴِﻬِﻢْ ﻗَﺎﻟُﻮﺍْ ﻓِﻴﻢَ ﻛُﻨﺘُﻢْ ﻗَﺎﻟُﻮﺍْ ﻛُﻨَّﺎ ﻣُﺴْﺘَﻀْﻌَﻔِﻴﻦَ ﻓِﻲ ﺍﻷَﺭْﺽِ ﻗَﺎﻟْﻮَﺍْ ﺃَﻟَﻢْ ﺗَﻜُﻦْ ﺃَﺭْﺽُ ﺍﻟﻠّﻪِ ﻭَﺍﺳِﻌَﺔً ﻓَﺘُﻬَﺎﺟِﺮُﻭﺍْ ﻓِﻴﻬَﺎ ﻓَﺄُﻭْﻟَـﺌِﻚَ ﻣَﺄْﻭَﺍﻫُﻢْ ﺟَﻬَﻨَّﻢُ ﻭَﺳَﺎﺀﺕْ ﻣَﺼِﻴﺮًﺍ 3

Imam Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) clarifies this Ayah by stating:

Al-Bukhari recorded that Muhammad bin ‘Abdur-Rahmān, Abu Al-Aswad, said, “The people of Al-Madinah were forced to prepare an army (to fight against the people of Ash-Sham during the Khilafah of Abdullah bin Az-Zubayir at Makkah), and I was enlisted in it. Then I met ‘Ikrimah, the freed slave of Ibn ‘Abbas, and informed him (about it), and he forbade me strongly from doing so (i.e., to enlist in that army), and then he said to me, ‘Ibn ‘Abbas told me that some Muslims used to go out with the idolators increasing the size of their army against the Messenger of Allāh . Then, an arrow would hit one of them and kill him, or he would be struck on his neck (with a sword) and killed, and Allāh sent down the Ayah,

ﺇِﻥَّ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﺗَﻮَﻓَّـﻬُﻢُ ﺍﻟْﻤَﻠَـﺌِﻜَﺔُ ﻇَـﻠِﻤِﻰ ﺃَﻧﻔُﺴِﻬِﻢْ

‘Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves’

Ad-Dahhak stated that this Ayah was revealed about some hypocrites who did not join the Messenger of Allāh but remained in Makkah and went out with the idolators for the battle of Badr. They were killed among those who were killed. Thus, this honorable Ayah was revealed about those who reside among the idolators, while able to perform Hijrah and unable to practice the faith. Such people will be committing injustice against themselves and falling into a prohibition according to the consensus [emphasis is mine] and also according to this Ayah,

ﺇِﻥَّ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﺗَﻮَﻓَّـﻬُﻢُ ﺍﻟْﻤَﻠَـﺌِﻜَﺔُ ﻇَـﻠِﻤِﻰ ﺃَﻧﻔُﺴِﻬِﻢْ

“Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves,” by refraining from Hijrah,
ﻗَﺎﻟُﻮﺍْ ﻓِﻴﻢَ ﻛُﻨﺘُﻢْ

They (angels) say (to them): ‘In what (condition) were you’
meaning, why did you remain here and not perform Hijrah

ﻗَﺎﻟُﻮﺍْ ﻛُﻨَّﺎ ﻣُﺴْﺘَﻀْﻌَﻔِﻴﻦَ ﻓِﻰ ﺍﻻٌّﺭْﺽِ

They reply: ‘We were weak and oppressed on the earth.’
meaning, we are unable to leave the land or move about in the earth,

ﻗَﺎﻟْﻮﺍْ ﺃَﻟَﻢْ ﺗَﻜُﻦْ ﺃَﺭْﺽُ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻭَﺳِﻌَﺔً

They (angels) say: ‘Was not the earth of Allāh spacious enough for you’

Abu Dawud recorded that Samurah bin Jundub said that the Messenger of Allāh said:

ﻣَﻦْ ﺟَﺎﻣَﻊَ ﺍﻟْﻤُﺸْﺮِﻙَ ﻭَﺳَﻜَﻦَ ﻣَﻌَﻪُ ﻓَﺈِﻧَّﻪُ ﻣِﺜْﻠُﻪ

“Whoever mingles with the mushrik and resides with him, he is just like him.”

In essence Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) explains the ayah by saying that those who have the ability to make hijrah , (i.e. they were able to leave the land or able to traverse the earth without prohibition), and do not do it, and have an inability to practice their Islam, will be falling into a prohibition according to the concensus of scholars. The issue directly applies to the Muslims in Andalus after 1492, as many Muslims, (who had the ability to make hijrah ), chose to stay behind in the misguided notion that if they stayed they could reclaim Andalus from the Christians with the help of the Fatimi / Mahdi, (when clearly they neither had the force inside Andalus or in the Maghrib to help them achieve that. Furthermore, Uthmani help never came until much later in a very meager form. The best solution would have been to regroup in the Maghrib in order to regain Andalus), or simply that, they had an attachment to the land and didn’t want to leave, even if it meant hardship, slavery or even feigned or real apostasy to Christianity.

It is clear according to the scholars how grave the issue of living among the Mushrikeen is, as, Imam Ibn Katheer cites a hadith from Abi Dawood that whosoever lives and mingles with the mushrikeen, is like him (i.e. a mushrik ). Moreover a hadith is narrated where “some munafiqeen who did not join the Messenger of Allāh but remained in Makkah and went out with the mushrikeen for the battle of Badr. They were killed among those who were killed.” Imam Ibn Kathir explains that the Ayah applies to those who were able to make hijrah, unable to practice their Islam and resided amongst the
mushrikeen. However the hadith adds that those Muslims, who fought under the mushrikeen at Badr against the Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ), and were killed, died in a state where they would be wronging themselves. It is a stark reminder especially to those living in countries ruled by kafirs such as in those of the Americas and Europe.

Their armies have come to do nothing short of occupation and the manipulation, if not annihilation, of the Deen of Islam and Muslims. Many Muslims fight in these armies and put themselves at great peril.

As for those who still are obstinate and choose to remain in kafir lands when they have the wherewithal to leave, they are at risk of being drafted into the armies of kafir host countries and put their aakhirah [hereafter] in peril.

Imam Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) proceeds to provide the exeptions to this Ayah by clarifying the proceeding Ayah :

ﺇِﻻَّ ﺍﻟْﻤُﺴْﺘَﻀْﻌَﻔِﻴﻦَ

‘Except the weak’ until the end of the Ayah, is an excuse that Allāh gives for this type of people not to emigrate, because they are unable to free themselves from the idolators. And even if they did, they would not know which way to go. This is why Allāh said,

ﻻَ ﻳَﺴْﺘَﻄِﻴﻌُﻮﻥَ ﺣِﻴﻠَﺔً ﻭَﻻَ ﻳَﻬْﺘَﺪُﻭﻥَ ﺳَﺒِﻴﻼً

“Who cannot devise a plan, nor are they able to direct their way,” meaning, they do not find the way to emigrate, as Mujahid, ‘Ikrimah and As-Suddi stated.

Allāh’s statement,

ﻓَﺄُﻭْﻟَـﺌِﻚَ ﻋَﺴَﻰ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﺃَﻥ ﻳَﻌْﻔُﻮَ ﻋَﻨْﻬُﻢْ

“These are they whom Allāh is likely to forgive them” means, pardon them for not migrating, and here, ‘likely’ means He shall…

Allāh’s statement,

ﻭَﻣَﻦ ﻳُﻬَﺎﺟِﺮْ ﻓِﻰ ﺳَﺒِﻴﻞِ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻳَﺠِﺪْ ﻓِﻰ ﺍﻻٌّﺭْﺽِ ﻣُﺮَﺍﻏَﻤﺎً ﻛَﺜِﻴﺮﺍً ﻭَﺳَﻌَﺔً

“He who emigrates in the cause of Allāh, will find on earth many dwelling places and plenty to live by.” this encourages the believers to perform Hijrah and abandon the idolators, for wherever the believer emigrates, he will find a safe refuge to resort to. Mujahid said that,

ﻣُﺮَﺍﻏَﻤﺎً ﻛَﺜِﻴﺮﺍً

“many dwelling places” means, he will find a way out of what he dislikes. Allāh’s statement,

“and plenty to live by” refers to provision. Qatadah also said that,

ﻳَﺠِﺪْ ﻓِﻰ ﺍﻻٌّﺭْﺽِ ﻣُﺮَﺍﻏَﻤﺎً ﻛَﺜِﻴﺮﺍً ﻭَﺳَﻌَﺔً

“…will find on earth many dwelling places and plenty to live by” means, Allāh will take him from misguidance to guidance and from poverty to richness.

Allāh’s statement,

ﻭَﻣَﻦ ﻳَﺨْﺮُﺝْ ﻣِﻦ ﺑَﻴْﺘِﻪِ ﻣُﻬَـﺠِﺮﺍً ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻭَﺭَﺳُﻮﻟِﻪِ ﺛُﻢَّ ﻳُﺪْﺭِﻛْﻪُ ﺍﻟْﻤَﻮْﺕُ ﻓَﻘَﺪْ ﻭَﻗَﻊَ ﺃَﺟْﺮُﻩُ ﻋَﻠﻰَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ

“And whosoever leaves his home as an emigrant unto Allāh and His Messenger, and death overtakes him, his reward is then surely, incumbent upon Allāh.” means, whoever starts emigrating and dies on the way, he will acquire the reward of those who emigrate for Allāh. The Two Sahihs, along with the Musnad and Sunan compilers, recorded that ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab (radhiyallahu anhu) said that the Messenger of Allāh (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) said:

ﺇِﻧَّﻤَﺎ ﺍﻟْﺄَﻋْﻤَﺎﻝُ ﺑِﺎﻟﻨِّــﻴَّﺎﺕِ، ﻭَﺇِﻧَّﻤَﺎ ﻟِﻜُﻞِّ ﺍﻣْﺮِﻯﺀٍ ﻣَﺎ ﻧَﻮَﻯ، ﻓَﻤَﻦْ ﻛَﺎﻧَﺖْ ﻫِﺠْﺮَﺗُﻪُ ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪِ ﻭَﺭَﺳُﻮﻟِﻪِ، ﻓَﻬِﺠْﺮَﺗُﻪُ ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪِ ﻭَﺭَﺳُﻮﻟِﻪِ، ﻭَﻣَﻦْ ﻛَﺎﻧَﺖْ ﻫِﺠْﺮَﺗُﻪُ ﺇِﻟﻰ ﺩُﻧْﻴَﺎ ﻳُﺼِﻴﺒُﻬَﺎ، ﺃَﻭِ ﺍﻣْﺮَﺃَﺓٍ ﻳَﺘَﺰَﻭَّﺟُﻬَﺎ، ﻓَﻬِﺠْﺮَﺗُﻪُ ﺇِﻟﻰ ﻣَﺎ ﻫَﺎﺟَﺮَ ﺇِﻟَﻴْﻪ 4

The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions, and every person will be rewarded according to what he has intended. So, whoever emigrated to Allāh and His Messenger, then his emigration is for Allāh and His Messenger. And whoever emigrated for worldly benefits or for a woman to marry, his emigration is for what he emigrated for.

This Hadith is general, it applies to Hijrah as well as every other deed …

In this the exception is clear, in that, the only ones excused are those that are:

1. Unable to free themselves from the idolators

2. And those, even if they were to free themselves, would not know which way to go, or find the way to emigrate.

In addition, many Muslims after the Treaty of Garnata, exclaimed that the reason they didn’t want to go to the Maghrib was because life was rough there and there was no living to be made in Andalus, (as an Andalusi Muslim had asked Imam Wanshirisi during the 1500’s).

However Allāh ( ﺳﺒﺤﺎﻧﻪ ﻭ ﺗﻌﻠﻰ ) states clearly the muhajir who emigrates fee sabillilah [in the cause of Allāh], “…will find on earth many dwelling places and plenty to live by.” So Allāh ( ﺳﺒﺤﺎﻧﻪ ﻭ ﺗﻌﻠﻰ ), is not saying there is a possibility of sustenance or shelter, rather, He is saying that there will be shelter and sustenance for those who immigrated in His path.

Hand in hand with the previous verses, the people mentioned here are those who were put to trial and were under oppression, and could not leave the land, but when they opportunity arose, they emigrated in His path and waged
Struggle as Allāh ( ﺳﺒﺤﺎﻧﻪ ﻭ ﺗﻌﻠﻰ ), states in Verse 110 of Surah Al Nahl:

ﺛُﻢَّ ﺇِﻥَّ ﺭَﺑَّﻚَ ﻟِﻠَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﻫَـﺠَﺮُﻭﺍْ ﻣِﻦ ﺑَﻌْﺪِ ﻣَﺎ ﻓُﺘِﻨُﻮﺍْ ﺛُﻢَّ ﺟَـﻬَﺪُﻭﺍْ ﻭَﺻَﺒَﺮُﻭﺍْ ﺇِﻥَّ ﺭَﺑَّﻚَ ﻣِﻦ ﺑَﻌْﺪِﻫَﺎ ﻟَﻐَﻔُﻮﺭٌ ﺭَّﺣِﻴﻢٌ

Then, verily, your Lord for those who emigrated after they were put to trials and then struggled in His Path, and were patient, – after this, your Lord is indeed Forgiving, Most Merciful.

About this Ayah , Ibn Kathir States:

“This refers to another group of people who were oppressed in Makkah and whose position with their own people was weak, so they went along with them when they were tried by them. Then they managed to escape by emigrating, leaving their homeland, families and wealth behind, seeking the pleasure and forgiveness of Allāh. They joined the believers and fought with them against the disbelievers, bearing hardship with patience.
Allāh tells them that after this, meaning after their giving in when put to the test, He will forgive them and show mercy to them when they are resurrected.”

This Ayah fits in perfectly of those Muslims who after hiding their faith for a number of years and safeguarding it, managed to escape Andalus and subsequently managed to join up with the Ghazis of the Uthamani navy such as Khair Al Deen, (in the West he is called Barbarossa, or Red Beard), to raid Christian vessels to terrorize the enemies of Allāh and wage battle in His Path. This dichotomy is a perfect way to understand the Muslims of Andalus after 1492, but in its own way, it is a way to understand Muslims in the West today, and even those living under tyrannical Muslim regimes in the ‘east.’



[1] A Saheeh hadith related by Ibn Majah, Al-Baihaqi and others

[2] Surah Nahl, Ayah 106

[3] Surah 4 Ayah 97

[4] Sahih Bukhari, Hadith #: 1

The Fall of the Murabitun, Muwahiddun and The Christian Crusade Upon Garnata

However, in a short span of less than a hundred years, the
Murabitun had been wrestled from power both in the Maghrib and Andalus by Muwahhidun [1] who accused the Murabitun of becoming lax in their application of the
Shariah while claiming they had come to purify the region of its Bida’ . In fact by 1147, victory was almost complete for the Muwahhidun , but that certainly stopped the tempo of raids into Muslim territory by Christian forces. As it became clearer to later observers, each successive wave of internal ‘regime change’ undertaken, had resulted in lesser territory in Muslim possession as compared to the regime before. In other words, the internal tumult led only to more land falling into the hands of the Christians. If we look at the map on the next page, (The Spanish mangled the Arabic word ‘Al Muwahiddun’ into Almohad), we can see the state of the world and the Muslim holdings in the Maghrib and Andalus around 1200 CE. Notice how Portugal was no longer under Muslim Control as it had been taken as a result of the Reconquista campaign of the Christians.

In any case, The Muwahiddun captured and lost territory to the Christians, with a see saw like struggle taking place, where the Christians, being united and without the high level of strife present in the Muslim camp, were beginning to tilt the momentum towards themselves. This momentum was violently tilted towards the Christians side at the Battle of Las Navas De Tolosa, (or ﻣﻌﺮﻛﺔ ﺍﻟﻌﻘﺎﺏ /The Battle of punishment/retribution), in 1212 CE where the Muwahiddun sustained, some historians say, 100,000 casualties resulting in crushing loss and the end of the Muwahiddun power over Andalus. In fact, between 1217-1252 CE, Fernando the III, (King of the Kingdoms of Castille and Leon), conquered all Muslims kingdoms, (including Qurtuba), leaving Garnata as the sole independent Muslim Kingdom. Therefore it can be said that by 1252 CE, the end of Islam in Andalus was nigh. This period marked sporadic uprising by local Muslims against their kafir occupiers but this memory is marked by treachery by Muslim rulers who worked openly with the
kuffaar to safeguard their kingdom, while lying to their people about events unfolding. A great example of this is of Mohammad Ibn Al Ahmar, (who was the founder of the Banu Nasr dynasty that ruled Garnata till its fall in 1492). In addition, the Muslim lands and populations that came under Spanish control became ‘Mudejars,’ (or Mudajjan ), or Muslims who lived under the Christian rulers and obeyed them while, the Spanish King promised to safeguard the
Shariah and Sunnah and not meddle in its application and the Islamic practices of the populations. This designation ended in the beginning of the 16 century, as all Muslims, Garnati and others, were either expelled, imprisoned, expelled, killed, or baptized by force/coercion.

When Ferdinand III of Castile captured Qurtuba in 1236, Ibn Al Ahmar knew what was coming his way and approached Ferdinand to propose that in return for cooperating in the conquest of Muslim Seville, Garnata would be granted independence. Fernando agreed and took Seville. On returning to Garnata, Ibn Al Ahmar announced “there is no victor but Allāh” ( ﻭ ﻻ ﻏﺎﻟﺐ ﺍﻻ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ), which can be seen inscribed all over the Al Hamra’ palace, (one can surely see the absurdity of his proclamation after what Ibn Al Ahmar did, but this is not the place to get into that debate). As agreed, Ibn Al-Ahmar continued to pay the required tribute to Ferdinand III of Castile in exchange for the independence of Granada. Subsequently Ibn Al Ahmar lost his other holdings to Castille and was left with the city of Garnata only. Ofcourse the populace was kept in the dark about his backdoor deals, although rumours were rampant. It almost seems reminiscent of Muslim rulers of the 21 century, who use religion to justify their misdeeds while keeping their populace in the dark about their policies whether at home or abroad, and most importantly, about who is really controlling the nation. Clever public relations tricks are the soup de jour for Muslim elites as one might want to give the example of a nation that flouts hundreds of court scholars that write lengthy treatises of how allowing Kaffir troops on their land is wrong in principle, but is needed now due to maslaha or the fact that it actively and passively assists Kaffir armies to murder Muslims.


Garnata continued its policy of abating the Christians of paying them to leave them alone for almost 250 years, while increasingly mounting pitched battles to defend against ever ambitious Christian armies who realized that it was more useful to simply conquer Garnata and confiscate its wealth, populace and lands at once, than to keep it alive and bleed its populace to death. Thus the last ten years of Andalus, (1482-1491 CE), were years where Andalus was in a state of economic and military exhaustion due to the continuous raids against them by the Christians. The state of disarray of affairs in the Maghrib did not allow for substantial reinforcements to help them, while in the Muslim world at large, the aftermath of the Crusades and the Mongol Invasion still loomed large, while the Savafid Shia’s would later divert a large chunk of the Ummah’s energy. The Uthmanis, to the detriment of the Garnatis, were later preoccupied with this menace. The Uthmanis were indeed the hope the Garnatans looked towards after the glourious opening of Constantinople in 1453 CE, and hoped they would aid them.

Abu Abdullah Muhammad, (Boabdil in Spanish), the 12 became the Emir of Garnata in 1482 by way of leading a coup against his father, (whom he expelled). At the Battle of Sharqiya in 1483 CE he was caught by Spanish forces. While under detention, the King of Castille, (Ferdinand), with his council deliberated on what to do with Abu Abdullah. Rodrigo Ponce De Leon summed up the then adopted strategy as such, “release Boabdil; grant a short truce, and accept any tribute offered, including the release of Christian prisoners. All that did not preclude prosecuting the war once the truce came to an end, when Castile itself would be in a stronger position. (Harvey, Islamic Spain 1250 to 1500: 1250 to 1500, 281).” The strategy was agreed upon to release him in order to free prisoners and extract payment from the Muslims, but to also make Abu Abdullah feel indebted to the Spanish for freeing him, and thus have their ‘man’ at the helm of Garnata. Rather, Abu Abdullah consented to hold Garnata as a tributary kingdom under Ferdinand and Isabella. The plan worked as in Abu Abdullah’s mother agreed to Ferdinand’s terms by paying “…12,000 Doblas and the release of sixty prisoners a year for five years, and in addition ten noble youths (Boabdil’s son Ahmad among them), were to pass into Castillian hands as hostages (Ibid, 282).” In 1485 he was released, and by 1486 he was in Garnata again. But the people were incensed at this deal as is reflected by a fatwa that survives in Wanshirisi’s Kitab Al Mi’yar Al M’urib regarding the hostage swap wherein, the chief Qadi of Garnata Ibn Al Azraq, The
Mufti Al Mawwaq, Qadi Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Abd Al-Barr and others joined in to condemn the deal. They stated that there was no Islamic grounds for dropping allegiance to Abu Hasan, (the current commander and leader of Garnata), in favor of Abu Abdullah, and anyone who does so, does it in rebellion against Allāh and The Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ).

As it turned out, the Castilian move did not work, as people did not switch their allegiances to Abu Abdullah.

Abu Abdullah tried winning people over by offering “…a promise that districts loyal to him would be spared the ravages of war, (Ibid, p. 288).” Simply put he was a pascifist looking to bring back peace and stability. This was a message that appealed to traders and countryside folk, which led to renewed in fighting amongst the rival Garnatan factions. Abu Abdullah continued to be the thorn in the side of the mujahideen under Emir Abu Hasan, dividing up the populace into two factions, (people that wanted peace and negotiations with Ferdinand and those that wanted to continue the Jihad Al Difaa’ or defensive
jihad ). In fact by 1485, this strategy reaped rewards as the distracted and divided mujahideen at the city of Ronda were besieged by Ferdinand leading to the martyrdom of Emir Abu Hasan, leading to the succession of Abdullah Al Zagal or otherwise named Muhammd Bin Sa’ad, (Abu Abdullah’s uncle), as Emir of Garnata and the Mujahideen. By October of 1486, Abu Abdullah had managed to muster troops to fight Al Zagal’s forces in the city of Garnata, all the while, (according to Christian Sources), being in contact with the Spanish Monarchs in order to coordinate their efforts better.

In fact, Hernando de Pulgar, (a Spanish writer and Councilor of State at the time in Spain), wrote in his ‘Brief report on the Great Deeds of the Excellent Renowned Great Captain ‘:

“The King and Queen favored this young king [Abu Abdullah] with a safeconduct and peace which they extended to those of his realm who supported him, such as the people of Albaicin [Al Bayyazin], who constantly with their merchants entered Andalusia for bread and oil and necessary provisions. These merchants were well treated by the people on the frontier and the guards. Since Illora is the nearest pass to Granada, and since they were well treated there, that was where they always crossed” (Ibid, 291)

He goes on to say:

“He [Abu Abdullah] sent to the king and queen to beg them to order the captains and governors on the frontier to increase their military pressure because by squeezing the city in that way he would be enabled to sustain his position in the Albaicin [Al Bayyazin] better. When the orders reached the frontier to as Boabdil [Abu Abdullah] had requested, Gonzalo Fernandez [i.e., the future Great Captain] took pleasure in pleasing and being of service to this young man in Albaicin [Al Bayyazin], where inhabitants were beginning to waver because they saw the old king’s [Abu Abdullah] party was ever stronger in the city.” (Ibid, 292)

In other words what is alleged is that Abu Abdullah asked the Spanish to increase pressure on Al Zagal on his front line while he would then attack his rear line. The predicament for Emir Muhammad Al Zagal was indeed dire, in that he had to balance defending the city against the Spanish while keeping Abu Abdullah’s forces in check. The important town of Loja/Lawsha was beseiged by the Spanish crusaders along with foreign mercenaries from all over Europe. The town did subsequently fall, but as a result, embarrisingly enough, the Spanish agent, King Abu AbdAllāh was recaptured by the Spanish, only to be speedily re-released once again, (to avoid people getting the right idea that the Spanish were using Abu Abdullah to subdue the Muslims from within). As a result of the Spanish victory, they were able to move in from the west towards the countryside of Garnata.

In 1487, the Spanish decide to move onto to siege the key city of Maalaqa, (Malaga), on the western coast line, by first going through Balsh-Maalaqa, (Velez Malaga). It was an essential city for the Garnatans as it was their main life-line of supplies from North Africa, and if cut, it severly hurt Garnata in terms of supplies and any hope of receiving reinforcements in the future, (albeit no state in North Africa was in a position to send anything to help them due to their division and in fighting).

Reportedly, (from Hernando Pulgar’s writings), we learn that the Fuqaha of Garnata were pleading with Emir Al Zagal to come to a truce with Abu Abdullah and concede his throne in order to safeguard Garnata from Spanish attack and to present a united front for the mujahideen and for the opposing Spanish army. Pulgar states the Fuquha allegedly: “….him [Al Zagal], saying that if what he wished was to be king, of what country did he wish to be king, if it was all to be lost? In addition they told him that it would have been better if all the fighting which was taking place between his brothers and members of his family…had taken place in defense of the country, against its enemies rather than inflicted on friends, and this they preached all through the city. They ought to grieve, they said, to see homes which they had built being taken over by the Christians, the fruits of trees planted by their fathers and their grandfathers being gathered by them, to see their brothers and relatives exiled from their own land, which had been held by their forefathers for so long. Their blood had been shed to win it, now blood was being shed to lose it” (Ibid, 293).

Pulgar continues by saying the Emir Al Zagal, in order to avoid fitna, offered to step down as Emir and fight under the command of Abu Abdullah, but Abu Abdullah refused.

This resulted in Emir Al Zagal leaving with the mujahideen towards Balsh-Maalaqa (Velez-Malaga) to liberate it. However, on the way there, he received news that Abu Abdullah had successfully taken control of Garnata which meant it was pointless struggling for Maalaqa without his rear base or any good chance of victory at Velez-Maalaqa. Thus he fled with the Mujahideen to the Alpujarras, (or in Arabic, Al Busharaat ), a mountainous area east of Garnata to regroup. The Spanish arrived at Maalaqa for the key battle that was one of the last in series of battles that led to the destruction of Garnata.

The mujahideen under their commander at Maalaqa, Ahmad Al Thagri, were not in a mood to surrender or negotiate. In fact he contemptuously rejected the offer of a negotiated settlement, (Ibid, p.294), and so stiffed his garrison of troops with Berber reinforcements. To make sure that if the
Mujahideen did not achieve victory and their City walls[2] were breached by the Spanish, they destroyed all the houses and buildings near the wall so that the Spanish could not take anything from them nor make it any easier for them, (Ibid, 295), while the Christian account of the siege stated that:

“[The Muslims] seemed to have a greater desire to kill Christians than to preserve their own lives. The fighting went on for six hours, and the sound of trumpets, the shouting, the alarms, the clash of weapons, the noise of the matchlock guns [3] and of the crossbows on both sides were so loud that the hillsides reechoed…So great was the desire for vengeance that it predominated over the desire to gain, and nobody made any attempt to take prisoners, only to kill and to maim” (Ibid, 295-296).

The Christians did eventually breakthrough, but they regressed further into the defensive fortifications of the city and were not looking to give up. Only Shahada or victory was sufficient for them.

Even though there are no Muslim accounts available of the defenders in Maalaqa, Christian accounts spell out clearly that the mujahideen were not looking to give up:

“Although they [the mujahideen] had no food supplies inside, and could hope for none from outside, although they saw their fellows fall dead and wounded in the fighting, it was worthy of not how bold this barbarous folk was in battles, how obedient to their commanders, how hard-working as they repaired the fortifications, how astute the ruses of war, how constant in the pursuit of their objectives” (Ibid, 297)

Emir Al Zagal heard of the siege of Maalaqa, and sent a relief coloumn of Istishadeyeen (Martyrdom seekers), who, in the words of a Christian account of the battle:

“believing that if they did manage to get in to Malaga, that would be a mighty exploit, and if they did not that would save their souls [attain Shahada ], so they resolved to die or enter the city” (Ibid, 298)

In the meanwhile, Abu Abdullah reported these troop movements to King Ferdinand, and he, (Abu Abdullah), subsequently intercepted these brave mujahids and routed them, leaving the remainder to retreat back to Emir Al Zagal.

Hernando Pulgar states that King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella “…lavished their favors on Abu Abdullah in gratitude for this, (Ibid).” Other attempts were made to come to the aid of Maalaqa by Ibrahim Al Jarbi, (from Jerba in Tunisia), who was actually a resident of Wadi Ash, (Guadix). He formulated a plot to assinate Ferdinand and Isabella. He rallied some 400 people to his cause, according to Pulgar. They made an unsuccessful attempt to attack the Christians leading to the martyrdom of many whereas Ibrahim Al Jarbi decided to lead the assassination attempt on his own by standing outside of the city of Maalaqa, in an attempt to get arrested by the guards, to be subsequently taken into the Christian camp. There was the danger that the guards would kill him on the spot and not take him close to the King and Queen, but he stuck to the plan and had
Tawakkul , (reliance), on Allāh. The plan worked and the soldiers captured him and took him to Rodrigo Ponce De Leon, Marquis of Cadiz at the time, to be interrogated. He baited Rodrigo by saying that he had a revelation about the war, but told him that he would only reveal it to the King and Queen. After hesitation, he was taken to see them and placed in a waiting tent with other Spanish nobles eager to see what this supposed holy man had to say.

Unfortunately for Ibrahim, he spoke no Castillian and therefore assumed when he saw the ornately dressed Alvaro De Portugal and his wife Felipa, that he reached his target. He attacked with ferocity but failed to kill either, and was subsequently caught and was “…cut into pieces. (Ibid, 299).” The barbaric Christians then catapulted this brave mujahid’s body parts over the city walls to intimidate the Muslims. The Muslims instead decided to stitch his body together and gave him an emotional funeral. In retaliation, Muslims killed a high ranking Christian Prisoner and mounted his body on a Donkey towards the Christian camp.

SubhaanAllāh ! Look at the iman and love for martyrdom and the hatred of humiliation and defeat! People that literally were commiting suicide, by western standards, to make the Word of Allāh uppermost inspite of hunger, lack of reinforcements and the overwhelming strength of the enemy. The story of Abu Abdullah is one that has many allegories in the 21 century in the Muslim world, wherein if we looked at Iraq, we would have seen how the leaders were propped by the United States and its Coalition of The Willing to create the Majlis Al Sahwa , (or Awakening Councils), and subsequently, the Abna’a Al Iraq, (Sons of Iraq), while allowing them enough latitude to criticize America and cloaking themselves in Islamic ideology only to divide the mujahideen and to betray them and steal the fruits of their Jihad. And what is their return on this bargain? They get to rule Iraq in any subsequent government that would be formed if they were to defeat the real mujahideen . If we were to look at Afghanistan and their struggle against Russia, we would see that the blood and sweat put into that Jihad was derailed by the machinations of the international community and, more importantly, Muslim countries such as Pakistan and Saudi Arabia who took it upon themselves to create a nationalist unity government with no mention of Shariah or its establishment, which was the very goal which many
Mujahideen from all over the world gave the ultimate sacrifice for.

People such as Abu Abdullah attempted to gain worldy power while risking their hereafter by allying with the kuffaar , betraying and killing the Muslims. Allāh (ﺳﺒﺤﺎﻧﻪ ﻭ ﺗﻌﻠﻰ ) says:

ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﺀَﺍﻣَﻨُﻮﺍْ ﻳُﻘَـﺘِﻠُﻮﻥَ ﻓِﻰ ﺳَﺒِﻴﻞِ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻭَﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﻛَﻔَﺮُﻭﺍْ ﻳُﻘَـﺘِﻠُﻮﻥَ ﻓِﻰ ﺳَﺒِﻴﻞِ ﺍﻟﻄَّـﻐُﻮﺕِ

Those who believe, fight in the cause of Allāh, and those who disbelieve, fight in the cause of the Taghut. So fight against the friends of Shaytan; ever feeble indeed is the plot of Shaytan. [4]

In 1489, the Spanish headed towards the town of Basta, (Baza in Spanish), in order to mop up the remainer of Garnatan resistance under Emir al Zagal. The commander at Basta was Sidi Yahya Al Najjar and predictably, he didn’t offer to surrender, just as the Maalaqan commander did. However, as the siege ground on, Yahya wrote to the king and his commanders to begin negotiations to surrender and by the end of the month, they had reached an agreement. However the agreement made no mention of how the Muslims of the city would be treated but rather dealt with how the Muslim elite of the city would survive and “…the subterfuges that would permit Sidi Yahya…to transmogrify himself safely and profitably into Don Pedro de Granada Venegas, (Ibid, p. 302).” In other words, he had made arrangements to convert to Christianity, but you may wonder why such an abrupt turn of events? This agreement was a good way in which to look at how the Garnatan nobles and leaders were willing to become murtad (or at least to pretend to do so), to safeguard their lands and wealth, even if that meant selling out the mujahideen under them and their citizens. As a result of the agreement:

1. Yahya became Ferdinand’s Vassal

2. He became a Christian, and would be baptized in the King’s own chamber, but this conversion was to be kept secret until Basta was surrendered

3. He was confirmed in possession of his lands, “towns. Fortresses, and villages” (i.e. he was to be lord of his own domain)

4. He was exempted from the duty of lodging royal troops (always thought of as a humiliating obligation).

5. He was exempted from certain taxes, including the

6. He was entitled to keep an armed escort

7. Various financial settlements were made to his advantage, and if Basta was surrendered, but not until then, he was to receive and extra gratuitity of ten thousand reales .[5] (Ibid, p. 302-303)

After concluding his secret deal, Yahya headed off to Wadi Ash to persuade Emir Al Zagal to stand down and surrender. Yahya was successful and Emir Al Zagal gave up his resistance and handed over Wadi Ash and Almeria, (King Ferdinand offered him his very own domain in the Alpujarras or Al Bushra . The Emir had no intention of following Yahya’s path, and thus sold the holdings offered to him and crossed over to the Maghrib with his fellow Mujahideen .

However, an alternative reason is presented by an anonymous writer, who was present in Garnata during the last years of its existence, in Akhir Ayyam Gharnatah Nubdhat al- Asr fi Akhbar Muluk Bani Nasr , (The Last Days of Garnata: A synoposis of the era of news of the Kings of Bani Nasr/( ﺁﺧﺮ ﺃﻳﺎﻡ ﻏﺮﻧﺎﻃﺔ ﻧﺒﺬﺓ ﺍﻟﻌﺼﺮ ﻓﻲ ﺍﺧﺒﺎﺭ ﻣﻠﻮﻙ ﺑﻨﻲ ﻧﺴﺮ )):

“All the knights and commanders of the Emir Muhammad b. Sa’d [Al-Zagal], accepted the dhimma [protection of the King of Castille] and began to help him against the Muslims…

Many people assert that Emir Muhammad b. Sa’d [Al-Zagal] and his commanders sold these villages and districts ruled by them to the ruler of Castille, and that they received a price for them. All of this was with a view to taking revenge [ intiqam] on the son of his brother Muhammad b. Ali [Boadil/Abu Abdullah] and on his commanders who had remained in Garnata, with just the city under their government and with benefit of a truce from the enemy. By his action [Al-Zagal], wanted to cut Garnata off, so as to destroy it in the way the rest of the country had been destroyed, (Ibid, p. 304-305).”

Why did he want to destroy Garnata? He simply wanted revenge upon his rival, Abu Abdullah, according to the writer. Shortly afterwards, Abu Abdullah sent out his wazir
to enter into talks with the Spanish to surrender, and as by orchestration, his wazir arrives back in Garnata with two Spanish officers sent by King Ferdinand to negotiate on Spain’s behalf. These men were Gonzalo de Cordoba and Martin de Alarcon and both were known to Abu Abdullah very well and likewise they knew him well. The only people who were not familiar with the nature of these relationships were the people of Garnata and Abu Abdullah’s
Shura . Martin de Alarcon had been in charge of the “…arrangements for Boabdil’s [Abu Abdullah’s] detention when he was first held by the Castilians, at Porcuena in 1483.

From that point on Boabdil had been a tool of Castilian policy, (Ibid, p. 307).” It has to be assumed that perhaps Ferdinand picked Alarcon for psychological reasons as perhaps, during Abu Abdullah’s incarceration, there developed a detainee-jailor relationship, wherein Martin could assert his own will upon Abu Abdullah easier. Gonzalo de Cordoba was the man who, in 1486, had completed an operation inside Garnata to support Abu Abdullah against Emir Al Zagal and was known to Abu Abdullah.

However, in a strange twist of events, Abu Abdullah refused to negotiate reinitiated hostilities against the Spanish. One may assume that perhaps he had a sudden change of heart after his series of betrayals. However, it is perhaps more realistic, (and certainly we can only guess at his intentions), in light of the past and what was to happen at the end of hostilities, that he planned to keep up the ruse and make it appear as if he was the heroic Emir who would not bow down to the Spanish and would fight them till the end, (to dispel rumours that he was in league with the Spanish from the beginning or that there was a secret ‘deal’ between them). The idea was to reach a point wherein Garnatans who, were in no position to fight, had their supply lines cut and were short of trained men who were still able to, or were alive to fight, to want to call for peace themselves, with Abu Abdullah then regretfully having to call for a surrender and mercy for his beloved people. It was the Middle Ages equivalent of Madison Avenue spin-doctoring that the US Defense department would be proud of, since Abu Abdullah had agreed to surrender Garnata and the surrounding kingdoms from the day he was first captured by the Spanish! He was only making his people ask for negotiations over a matter that already, years before had been decided in secret! In fact, that indeed did happen, when the powers in the Maghrib didn’t come to their aid, supplies were short and morale was lowered due to continuing Spanish besiegement. In fact in Akhir Al Ayyam Gharnata , it was stated thus:

“Many people alleged that the Emir of Garnata and his ministers and military chiefs had already made an agreement to hand over the city to the Christian King who was invading them, but they feared the common people, and so kept them duped, and simply told them what they wanted to hear. This was why, when they [the people] came saying what the king and his ministers had been keeping secret from them, they pardoned them on the spot. This was why military operations had been suspended at the time, to give scope for them to find a way of introducting the idea to the common people. So when they sent to the king of the Christians, they found he readily agreed, and was happy to grant all their requests and all their stipulations, (Ibid, p. 311).”

As for the composition of the Spanish armies during this long, arduous and vicious campaign against the Muslims, the allegation that the army was purely Spanish rings hollow. Evidence is presented from the archives in the former royal archives of Aragon, in the Spanish book of essays, ‘Gente del siglo XV,’ which shows that Christians from all over the world showed up during the 1480’s to the end of the campaign, eager for a fight against the Muslims. The numbers that are present in the finding, (Which are included in full in Appendix Z), are startling as there were at least 24 Swiss, 20 French, 17 English, 1 Scottish, 1 Portuguese, 1 Dutch and 23 German Soldiers listed. There are even reports of Italian knights showing up to fight, serving both on the ground and at sea in the service of the Spanish, (Edwards, 124). Do remember this is not even the real total of foreign fighters but simply a glimpse that proves the presence of foreign crusaders fighting the Muslims. In fact the Briton, Edward Woodville, (who is listed in the statistics), led his own band of men to Spain to fight the ‘Saracens.’ After all, the Pope had declared that the war being waged against the Muslims of Garnata was a Crusade as John Edwards says:

“The fact that Ferdinand and Isabella’s campaigns against the emirate of Granada were designated as ‘crusades’ brought troops from outside the Spanish kingdoms to fight in the royal armies. Papal interest in the Spanish frontier against Islam and the Reconquista had already rekindled in the 1430’s. Martin V and Eugenius IV made successive grants of crusading indulgences to those who fought, and gave the traditional two-ninth’s share of the Spanish Church’s tithes…to the respective rulers of Castile and Aragon, (Ibid, 122).”

Edwards continues by stating England’s role in this Crusade at a royal level:

“Henry IV [the King of England at the time] did mount campaigns against Granada between 1455 and 1458, as well as capturing Archidon [Arshidona] and Gibralter [Jabal Tariq] in 1462, (ibid, 123).”

Edwards speaks of a notorious English crusader, Edward Woodville, and his story. His army had:

“…approximately 300 archers together with supporters, left…England at the end of February 1460…The army which Edward Woodville assembled in the Isle of Wight included not only local men but also troops from Scotland, Ireland, Brittany and Burgundy, as well as other parts of England…Isabella [Queen of Spain]…designated him as leader of the foreign knights…Woodville’s company…was said to have acquitted itself well in the fighting which ended in the capture of the town [of Loja/Lawsha] on 28-29 May 1486 [6] , (ibid, 127).”

As for Edward’s men, some of them were captured and rightfully enslaved and sent to Fas/Fez to be traded and sold while others were killed by the mujahideen . As for the role of soldiers other than Edward Woodville:

“…other troops from the British Isles, who are known to have participated in the 1486 and 1487 campaigns are William Marston, who is recorded as a groom of Henry VII’s chamber, and Hubert Stanton, who was said to be from Ireland, (ibid).”

The role of the Pope and the Vatican is also described:

“Pope Sixtus IV issued the first crusading bull for war against Granada in November 1479, only two months after signing of the treaty of Alcacovas between Castile and Portugal…Sixtus IV’s lengthy bull of 10 August 1482 was addressed to ‘the universal Christian faithful…, fighters and warriors and other assistance (pugnatores et bellatores aliaque auxilia ), both from Spain…and from other nations,’” (Ibid, 123).

The Activities of the Mercenaries varied by the countries they came from:

“…it is certain that companies of Swiss, and some German, mercenaries continued to gain employment in the successive Granada campaigns. They were present in 1482, staying in Alhama until two years later, and are to be found in the documents once again in 1491, when some of them received letters of commendation from the king” (Ibid).

I will expound further on the role of foreign fighters and mercenaries in Christians armies and the inherent irony of their use during the Crusade in Garnata, the jihad in Bosnia, The Spanish Civil War and the so called ‘War on Terror’ today, in the conclusion.



[1] Berber dynasty, (mostly consisting of Masmuda tribesmen), that was founded in the 12th century, and conquered all northern Africa as far as Libya, together with Al Andalus.

[2] Cities during these periods were fortified usually by a high external stone city wall with built in citadels and other defensive devices in order to allow the city defenders to have the maximum ability to defend the city in the case of an invasion. In fact, within the city there were internal city walls as to allow a secondary position of retreat for the defenders in the case that the attackers had penetrated the first wall.

[3] By 1394, the Garnatan army had already used handguns in the field against Christian troops and were the first to do so in the Jazirat al Andalus (Andalusi peninsula)

[4] Surat al-Nisa’ verse 76

[5] Unit of Spanish currency at the time. The first real was introduced by King Pedro I of Castile at a value of 3 Murabitun/Maravedies, (gold dinars minted by the Murabitun). This rate of exchange increased until 1497, when the real was fixed at a value of 34 maravedíes. The famous Peso de a Ocho (“piece of eight” is referred to the value of 8 Reales = 1 Silver Peso) also known as Spanish dollar, was issued that same year, and it later became widespread in America and Asia.

[6] The battle at Lawsha in 1486 was a key battle and was battle where Abu Abdullah the traitor was recaptured by the Spanish and key Spanish military men proved their mettle. One of these men was Gonzalo Fernandez De Cordoba, who, during the battle had fought effectively with his group of 120 Lancemen. This was the same Gonzalo Fernandez De Cordoba that was sent by King Ferdinand to help Abu Abdullah the traitor to fight the brave Emir Al Zagal in Al Bayyazin and also the same person who King Ferdinand had sent in 1491 to negotiate on Spain’s behalf for the surrender of Muslims forces in the city of Garnata.

The Muluk Al Tawaif and The Rise of the Murabitun

Thus in 1031 CE began the era called the Muluk Al Tawaif , (or roughly translated as Party Kings, to imply the multitude of mini kingdoms that sprang up in the wake of the collapse of the Ummayad Khilafa in Andalus), period. It is a period that sped up the reconquista , (or reconquest of Islamic Spain by the Christians), due to Muslim forces being disunited and fighting amongst each other, but also a period that began the processes of increasing Muslim usage of Christian mercenaries, or vice versa, Muslim fighting alongside Christian armies to fight Muslim rivals.

However, on a brighter note, it is also the period which saw the mujahid Commander, Yusuf Ibn Tashfin (rahimahullah) being requested to land at the shores of Spain to save the Muslims kingdoms from annihilation by an impending Christian onslaught. Ironically of the many princes that requested Tashfeen’s (rahimahullah) increasingly powerful mujahid Murabitun[1] army from Africa was Muhammad Ibn Abbad Al Mu’tamid, (or simply Al Mu’tamid), the ruler of Seville, who had in 1074 CE fought the Murabitun army and ejected them from Jaen, (in Arabic ﺟﻴﺎﻥ ), was not in 1086 CE asking for help against Alfonso VI of Castille, (a clear indication of the dire situation on the part of these corrupt Muslim rulers). In retrospect it was a period not unlike our own in the 20 Century CE, where there were taxes imposed on the people that were not from the Quran and Sunnah, alcohol was everpresent as was debauchery, excessive love of poetry, (Al Mu’tamid was actually quite a famous poet himself), Bid’ah , (innovation in the Religion), misguidance due to Greek Philsophy, forgetting the essential concepts of
Wala and Bara (loving and hating something for Allāh’s ( ﺳﺒﺤﺎﻧﻪ ﻭ ﺗﻌﻠﻰ ) sake), all the while cooperating with the Kuffaar against Muslims and adopting their habits and practices.

The Murabitun were a breath of fresh air that came to revive the deen in Andalus and cleanse it from the impurities acquired over a century of mismanagement, greed and Fitan (corruption). Little did Yusuf know that the fruits of his jihad would be snatched by corrupt rulers looking to their own survival, rather than making Allāh’s Word the highest. In any case Murabitun intervention was successful, capped by a spectacular success at the battle of Zallāqa where 7500 Castillian troops or more died, (out of 15,000 at the beginning of the battle), which is why the battle was named Zallāqa, (slippery ground), since there was so much blood on the floor that soldiers were loosing their foothold. With a series of confrontations at behest of the Andalusi kings, the Murabiteen mujahideen kept a check on increasing ambition on the part of Christian forces hoping to reconquer land back from the Muslim kings. Yusuf bin Tashfeen returned home with his jihad complete, however as soon as he left the Christian pressure began once again and the jizyah like payments began once more to be extracted from the Buyut Al Maal (Treasuries), of the Muslim Kings on the fringes of Christian Spain as a bribe to avoid Spanish attacks upon Muslim territory, (The Muslim kings and their armies were notoriously afraid to fight and avoided it at any cost, even if it meant bankrupting the lands treasury). At the same time Muslim territories were being lost to the Chrisitians in the northern frontier. One of these was Barbushtaru [Bobastro] in north-east Andalus, and bears the ignominious title of the first city to be captured by the Christians, as part of their
reconquista , in 1064. Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr wrote about this event and addressed the Muslims of Andalus:

“Being frightened we are addressing you, seeking refuge we are writing to you: our eyelids are ulcerated, our hearts are wounded, and our souls are in flames. It is happened because our enemy has surrounded us like the encirclement of necklaces with the nape; they fought till they won. O Muslims, alas! You saw the lamentable conditions of your coreligionist brothers, they were defeated on their wealth and families, swords pierced their bodies deeply, death captured them, injections of javelins mocked them, clamor and howling increased. Bloods were flowing on their feet, floods of rain were in all ways, and their heads were flying in front of them. Now there is no rescuer and protector, and ears become deaf by the clamor of children and the weeping of women. O Muslim Ummah ! Do you have any idea about the indescribable adversity of your coreligionists? Women and Children-compelled to be undressed- are driven to the places of slaughter, sometimes on their backs, other times on bellies, tied by ropes, bounded in chains and fetters. They are seeking help, but there are none to help them, they are shouting for food, but no food is supplied to them, they are crying for water, but is not given to drink, their dreams went stray and their delusive imaginations were wept out. O Prophet Muhammad! O Holy Quran! (Hoque)”

Ibn Al ‘Assal was affected by the calamity of Bobastro and composed a poem about it:

ﻭﻟﻘﺪ ﺭﻣﺎﻧﺎ ﺍﻟﻤﺸﺮﻛﻮﻥ ﺑﺄﺳﻬﻢ ﻟﻢ ﺗﺨﻂ ﻟﻜﻦ ﺷﺄﻧﻬﺎ ﺍﻻﺻﻤﺎﺀ

ﻫﺘﻜﻮﺍ ﺑﺨﻴﻠﻬﻢ ﻗﺼﻮﺭ ﺣﺮﻳﻤﻬﺎ ﻟﻢ ﻳﺒﻖ ﻻ ﺟﺒﻞ ﻭﻻ ﺑﻄﺤﺎﺀ

ﺟﺎﺳﻮﺍ ﺧﻼﻝ ﺩﻳﺎﺭﻫﻢ ﻓﻠﻬﻢ ﺑﻬﺎ ﻓﻲ ﻛﻞ ﻳﻮﻡ ﻏﺎﺭﺓ ﺷﻌﻮﺍﺀ

ﺑﺎﺗﺖ ﻗﻠﻮﺏ ﺍﻟﻤﺴﻠﻤﻴﻦ ﺑﺮﻋﺒﻬﻢ ﻓﺤﻤﺎﺗﻨﺎ ﻓﻲ ﺣﺮﺑﻬﻢ ﺟﺒﻨﺎﺀ

ﻛﻢ ﻣﻮﺿﻊ ﻏﻨﻤﻮﻩ ﻟﻢ ﻳﺮﺣﻢ ﺑﻪ ﻃﻔﻞ ﻭﻻ ﺷﻴﺦ ﻭﻻ ﻋﺬﺭﺍﺀ

ﻭﻟﻜﻢ ﺭﺿﻴﻊ ﻓﺮﻗﻮﻩ ﻣﻦ ﺃﻣﻪ ﻟﻪ ﺇﻟﻴﻬﺎ ﺿﺠﺔ ﻭﺑﻐﺎﺀ
ﻭﻣﻮﺻﻮﻧﺔ ﻓﻲ ﺧﺪﺭﻫﺎ ﻣﺤﺠﻮﺑﺔ ﻗﺪ ﺃﺑﺮﺯﻭﻫﺎ ﻣﺎ ﻟﻬﺎ ﺍﺳﺘﺨﻔﺎﺀ

* The mushrikun have thrown harms toward us, that never missed, and it was so fierceto make us deaf.

* Sacred palaces [of Bobastro] were torn apart by the strike of their horses’ troop, no hill or flatland remained intact.

* Enemies searched the houses [of the Muslims] and everyday they launched dreaded raids there.

* Hearts of Muslims spent the night filled with fear; since our protectors were cowards in the war.

* How many a place they ransacked, where no child, old man or virgin was pitied!

* How many babies, whom they have separated from their mothers, when they were crying for their mothers.

* Many protected and veiled women were dragged out in a way that no hide-out was left for them. (Ibid)”

And today, our ‘protectors’ are cowards too, who neither defend us, nor aid the interest of Muslims, but rather kill Muslims, as part of their pastime.

In 1090, after long deliberation, Yusuf Bin Tashfin decided to come back to Andalus to get rid of the Muluk Al Tawaif and end the non- shariah based taxes that burdened the Muslims of their land, (these taxes were created to repay the massive debt incurred by the protection money demanded by the Christian armies of Castille). Upon hearing rumours that Yusuf bin Tashfin was coming to free them from the tyranny of the coward rulers that ruled over them, the populace of Andalus was elated.

Yusuf had obtained fatwas from the Moroccan fuqaha which declared that the Muslim rulers of Andalus were unworthy of ruling since they had allied themselves with the Christians and had played a double game against the defenders of Islam. The faqihs of Granada, Abu Ja’far Ahmad al-Qulay’i and Abu Bakr ibn Musakkan were among those most eager to justify this intervention. By this fatwa, Yusuf was therefore authorised to demand of the Andalusi Kings that they carry out their precepts and abolish those taxes which were not prescribed by the Quran and the Sunna, (Bewley, Yusuf ibn Tashfin: The March Of Conquest Of Yusuf B.Tafsin) . This would particularly affect the economies of those kingdoms which relied on all sorts of taxes and impositions to maintain their courts and pay off Alphonso.

Yusuf still had religious doubts which kept him from taking decisive action against the other kings of Andalusia, and so required further fatwas condemning their conduct. The fuqaha of Andalus declared that the Andalusian princes were libertines and impious and that they had corrupted the people by their bad example and made them indifferent to their religious duties. Furthermore, they had levied illegal taxes and, although Yusuf had commanded their abolition, they had maintained them. They had also concluded an alliance with Alphonso VI and so they were unworthy of ruling the Muslims any longer.

To finish, they said:

“We take it on ourselves to answer for this action before Allāh. If we are in error, we agree to pure the penalty of our conduct in the Next world. We declare that you, Amir al-Muslimeen , are not responsible. But we firmly believe that if you leave the Andalusi princes in peace, they will deliver our country to the unbelievers and if that is the case, then you will have to render an account to Allāh of your lack of action, (Ibid).”

This fatwa was was extremely important to Yusuf, but he still was not completely satisfied until the faqihs of Africa had approved of it and he also sent to the famous scholars of Egypt and Asia and they had confirmed the opinion of the scholars of the Maghrib.

Active lobbying on Ibn Tashfin’s behalf was carried out by by the famous Andalusi scholar, Ibn Al Arabi in the Abbasid khalifa’s court to allow Yusuf Bin Tashfin to be recognized and invested of authority by the Abbasid khilafa, (and thus provide the
sharia justification need to fight the Muluk Al Tawaif ). Thus al-Ghazzali [2] and Imam Tartushi [3] approved this
fatwa and acknowledged that Yusuf had the right, as defender of the shariah , to depose the Taifa kings. [4] However, it must be added that inspite of his intention to remove the rulers of Andalus, he did give bay’a (pledge of allegiance) to the ‘Abbasid Khalifa and Ibn Tashfin refused to accept any name other than the laqab[5] of Amir al-Muslimin wa Nasir Al Din, (Leader of the Muslims and the victor of the Religion). In other words, he didn’t aspire to power or to challenge the Abbasid Khilafa. In his fatwa, Imam Ghazali says:

“…They must listen and obey and firmly believe that obedience of the Abbasi khalifa is considered the obedience of the imam and his disobedience is considered the disobedience of the imam. And whoever rebels and disobeys the imam, the verdict applied to him is that of the
baaghi [rebel/transgressor]…

…And compliance of the command of Allāh is to recognize [deferring to] the just Sultan- the one who pledges loyalty of the true imam, associated with the Abbasid khilafa. Anyone who rebels against the truth, he will be repelled by the sword to the truth. So it is compulsory on the Emir and his party to fight those who are rebellious. More importantly they turn to their Christian mushrikeen allies [ awliyaa] for aid- and they are the enemies of Allāh against the Muslims, who are the awliyaa of Allāh and one of the greatest forms of worship is to fight them until they return to the obedience of the just Emir who steadfastly obeys the Abbasid khilafa.”

Prior to the engagement, Sir Abi Bakr, one of Ibn Tashfin’s Generals, asked what their rules of engagement were with the Muluk Al Tawaif and Yusuf replied thus, “order them to accompany thee to the enemy’s country [to wage Jihad to defend the Muslim lands]; if they obey, well and good; if they refuse, lay siege to their cities, attack them one after the other, and destroy them without mercy. Thou shalt begin with those princes whose dominions border on the enemy’s frontier…(Makkari, Al Nafh Al Tibb, p. 296, Vol. II).” Of the many princes killed, (in the case of resistance to the Murabitun), were Al Mutawakkal Omar Ibn Muhammad who was the king of Badajoz and his two sons Al Fadhl and Al ‘Abbas. In addition, Al Mu’tamid’s, the ruler of Ishbiliyya, sons, Al Fath Al-Ma’mun and Yazid Al R’adhi were beheaded, while Malik was trampled under Horses, and Abdul Jabbar was assassinated by an arrow, (Makkari, Al Nafh Al Tibb, p. 297-300, Vol. II).

It would be interesting to ascertain how the current day puppet Muslim scholars and rulers react to these actions by Tashfin and his troops to remove, in the word of Sir Abi Bakr, (in Maqri’s Nafh Al Tibb), the rulers of Andalus who (not unlike their contemporaries), “…were plunged in pleasure and sloth…(Makkari, Al Nafh Al Tibb, 295, Vol. II),” while his men waged, “…incessant war [ Jihad] against the Christians, and leading at the same time a life of hardship and privation…(Ibid).” It would certainly nullify the argument that rebelling against the ruler is wrong Islamically, (as long as the ruler does not interfere/establishes prayer), unless one was to either say that the Muluk al Tawaif didn’t pray at all themselves, (which would be a stretch, but granted, a possibility), or that Yusuf ibn Tashfin was wrong and his reputation in the Muslim world as a hero and a mujahid who made the Christians taste bitter defeat and renewed the Deen in Andalus and cleansed it of the bidah and shirk that was present, would now be nullified to serve the purposes of petty, despotic and Machiavellian rulers, (willing to manipulate Islam to an unheard of extent to achieve their aims).

Yusuf sent emissaries to demand the submission of ‘Abdullah. ‘Abdullah asked for the help of Alphonso and other Taifa kings. He got plenty of verbal encouragement, but no troops or other material help. Fearing the reprisals of Yusuf, the other lords left him to Yusuf’s forces. ‘Abdullah realised he was lost.
By 8 Sept 1090 CE, Yusuf arrived before Granada. ‘Abdullah came out and humbled himself, admitting his mistakes and asking for his pardon. When he arrived before Yusuf, ‘Abdullah dismounted and said he had been unfortunate to displease him and asked for his pardon. Yusuf reassured him that if he had any grievances against him, he had forgotten them and asked him to go to a tent where he would receive honours that suited him. When he was in the tent, he was loaded down with chains. Then Yusuf received the important people of the city and welcomed them and told them that they should have no fear of him. He received their homage and published an edict which abolished all taxes not prescribed by the Quran. Then he entered the city.

‘Abdullah and his family were exiled to Maghrib al-Aqsa and installed in Aghmat. He was well treated and received a pension for his needs.

A short time later, in October, Yusuf deposed Tamim ibn Buluggin from Malaga, and, like his brother ‘Abdullah, he was sent to Maghrib al-Aqsa and confined to Baziaf.

Before returning to the Maghrib, Yusuf received the visits of al-Mu’tamid and al-Mutawakkil in Granada who came to congratulate him. Yusuf received them coldly, having been persuaded of their double game and the falseness of their words. The two princes left having received from Yusuf the command to abolish all illegal taxes and to employ themselves in fighting against the Christians.

By 1094, he had removed them all, except for the one at Zaragoza; and though he regained little from the Christians except Valencia, he re-united the Muslim power, and gave a check to the reconquest of the country by the Christians. With that began the Murabitun era of Andalus. At around the same moment a symbolic mark is reached in the Christain campaign of Reconquista , in that they conquer Tulaytala, (Toledo), in 1092 CE and forthwith, it never returned to Muslim hands. It would be the first of the major Muslim cities to fall to the Christian Spanish forces permenantly.

Imam Tartushi wrote in his letter to Ibn Tashfin in 1098/1099, after Ibn Tashfin’s successful liberation of Andalus:

“…Be aware, Abu Yaqub, that Allāh, ( ﺳﺒﺤﺎﻧﻪ ), has established jihad upon all Muslims, and it can never be rejected by neither tyrant, distanced from orthodoxy, nor the unrighteous who are far from Allāh, until the establishment of the Hour. He, Allāh ( Azza wa jal) says:

﴿ ﻗَـﺘِﻠُﻮﺍْ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﻻَ ﻳُﺆْﻣِﻨُﻮﻥَ ﺑِﺎﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻭَﻻَ ﺑِﺎﻟْﻴَﻮْﻡِ ﺍﻻٌّﺧِﺮِ ﻭَﻻَ ﻳُﺤَﺮِّﻣُﻮﻥَ ﻣَﺎ ﺣَﺮَّﻡَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻭَﺭَﺳُﻮﻟُﻪُ ﻭَﻻَ ﻳَﺪِﻳﻨُﻮﻥَ ﺩِﻳﻦَ ﺍﻟْﺤَﻖِّ ﻣِﻦَ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﺃُﻭﺗُﻮﺍْ ﺍﻟْﻜِﺘَـﺐَ ﺣَﺘَّﻰ ﻳُﻌْﻄُﻮﺍْ ﺍﻟْﺠِﺰْﻳَﺔَ ﻋَﻦ ﻳَﺪٍ ﻭَﻫُﻢْ ﺻَـﻐِﺮُﻭﻥَ ﴾

Fight against those who believe not in Allāh, nor in the Last Day, nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allāh and His Messenger, and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth among the People of the Scripture, until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued [6]
And He did not absolve our people [Muslims] to fight the enemy, as long as they do not deliver jizya or accept Islam, because this verse abrogates any another verse in the Book of Allāh, the exalted, concerning fighting against the kuffaar…

…You have an obligation, therefore, to fight the heretics [ kuffar ] on those frontiers of Islam close to you, because you’re the [Muslim] king closest to them, and have horses [ kura’ ] and weapons, influence, machines of war, Muslim armies and soldiers, all at your command. And, like you, all the warriors, fighters, with strength and power, which are your neighbours and nearby to you. And, you are in a critical moment to stop losing those Muslims, with their wives and children, who are on the borders of Al Andalus. How is it that you do not imitate the defenders and warriors of Islam who had [come] up there [Andalus], from the lands of hijaz , to conquer and extend in them the word of Islam and tawheed ? What about, therefore, he who is close and is a neighbour of those regions?…

Your insistence on fighting and your steadfastness, your support for the deen and … [the] fuqaha… pray for you and give great consideration [to you], and [it] makes us desire to go to fight the heretics [ kuffar] near to you, and increase the wealth of Muslims who follow you. O Lord, who gives generously His bounty, we ask that you and we will be granted shahada in jihad. And humbly ask that you do see where the truth is, and follow that, and avoid the false as false…”

Try to find a scholar today that would give this advice to the mujahideen commanders. They usually preoccupy themselves, as the Faqih of the Marines does, in asking the mujahideen to surrender or telling them how they are khawarij or people of the hell-fire, as the Saudi court scholars usually do.


[1] Berber dynasty, that mostly consisted of the Lamtuna tribe, from the Sahara that spread over a wide area of northwestern Africa and the Iberian Peninsula during the 11th century. Under this dynasty the Moorish empire was extended over present-day Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Jabal Tariq, Tlemcen and a great part of what is now Senegal and Mali in the south, and Spain and Portugal to the north in Europe. At its extent, the empire stretched 3,000 kilometres north to south. In western literature they are known as Almoravids.

[2] Imam Ghazali was from Khorasan. He was a Shafi’i and an Ashari . Ghazali received many titles such as
Sharaful A’emma ( ﺷﺮﻑ ﺍﻻﺋﻤﻪ ), Zainuddin ( ﺯﻳﻦ ﺍﻟﺪﻳﻦ ),
Hujjatul Islam, meaning “Proof of Islam” ( ﺣﺠﺔ ﺍﻻﺳﻼﻡ ).

[3] Another Spanish Imam that came from the city of Tortosa in Spain, who immigrated to Jeruslam. He is most famous for his book Siraj Al Muluk .

[4] A portion of this series of correspondences is included in Appendix J

[5] Epithet or title

[6] Surah Al Tawba, verse 29

Muslims in The Maghrib & Spain from 711-1492

As Islam started spreading rapidly from the Arabian Peninsula, the Mujahideen opened up many lands to the
Dawa , (or call/preaching), of Islam on the foundation of
tawheed . Amr Ibn Al Aas was one of the many Sahaba , (companions of the Prophet, Peace and Blessings Upon Him), and Mujahids that were involved in these expeditions. He opened, ( Fataha ), Egypt in 641 CE and set up the city of Fustat as a launch pad for further expansion of the Islamic Dawa into Africa. Muslim Expeditions reached further into Africa until they reached Qayrowan in Ifriqiya, (Present day Tunisia), led by the nephew of Amr Bin Al Aas, the Ummayad General Uqba Ibn Naafi (radhiyallahu anhu).

Subsequently Qayrowan replaced Fustat in 671 CE as a launch pad for further Muslim expedition in Africa and Southern Europe.
At around this time in Dimashq, (Damascus), The Ummayads were trying to strategize how best to take Constantinople, (Istanbul), due to it being the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire, (or Byzantium, or ‘Rum’), and in an attempt to attain the blessed status promised to the one who opens Constantinople:

ﻋﻦ ﻋﺒﺪﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﺑﻦ ﺑﺸﺮ ﺍﻟﻐﻨﻮﻱ ﻋﻦ ﺃﺑﻴﻪ ﺃﻧﻪ ﺳﻤﻊ ﺍﻟﻨﺒﻲ ﺻﻠﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠﻢ ﻳﻘﻮﻝ :
ﻟﺘﻔﺘﺤﻦ ﺍﻟﻘﺴﻄﻨﻄﻴﻨﻴﺔ , ﻓﻠﻨﻌﻢ ﺍﻷﻣﻴﺮ ﺃﻣﻴﺮﻫﺎ , ﻭﻟﻨﻌﻢ ﺍﻟﺠﻴﺶ ﺫﻟﻚ ﺍﻟﺠﻲ

Abdullah Bin Bashr Al Ghanawi narrates that his father heard the Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ), say:

“Verily you shall conquer Constantinople. What a wonderful leader will her leader be, and what a wonderful army will that army be!”

The father of the Governor of Bani Ummaya in Qayrawan, Musa Bin Nusayr, had advised the Khalifa Muawiya ( ﺭﺿﻲ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻨﻪ ) that the only way to take Constantinople was from the south, (through Anatolia) and north, (up through Spain, France, Italy, Romania and Hungary) and so Musa was commissioned to begin the invasion of Europe to reach Constantinople. It was a move that harked of the strategy of the Carthaginian General Hannibal, (and some historians say deliberately so on the part of Musa Bin Nusayr’s father, in that he was aware of Hannibal’s strategy), and his strategy to attack Rome by attacking, first, the Roman province of Hispania, (Spain), and then crossing the Pyrenees and working his way down the Italian Peninsula to attack Rome. Albeit, in Hannibal’s case, Scipio Africanus got the better of his forces for a variety of reasons, (leading to the end of the already crippled Carathaginian Empire [2] in the Third Punic War at the hands of another Scipio, Scipio Aemilianus Africanus in 146 BC), the Khalifa Muawiya believed the tactic could work and so ordered Musa to be groomed to go to Spain. However due to delays and a civil war [3] between Muslims, the plan was delayed.



Spain was, at that time ruled by the Visigoths [4] and Musa hadn’t decided to proceed with a full scale land invasion until an opportunity presented itself when the Governnor of Ceuta, Count Julian, came to Musa Bin Nusayr for assistance in avenging him of King Roderic’s [5] , (The then King of the Visigoths), terrible treatment of the people and for the abduction and rape of his daughter, and hence take him out of power. Muslims took control under the leadership of Tariq Ibn Ziyad and his army of 7,000 troops. Julian provided guides and intelligence on the lay of the land and hence began the invasion.

In 710 CE, as a preliminary intelligence collection mission,
[6] Tareef Ibn Malik, (a Berber Commander under Musa Bin Nusair), was sent to recon the southern coastline of Andalus, with the help of Julian, (Governor of Ceuta under the Visigoths), in order to gauge enemy capabilities and to designate a suitable landing spot for a subsequent larger raiding force to remove Roderic. The recon and subsequent test raid was successful and, after Musa got word of the mission’s success, decided to go forward with a full scale land raid into Andalus. At this very moment, there was a fracturious civil war underway in the Visigothic Kingdom, weakening army morale, reducing coordination of their forces and leaving them off-guard for a possible Muslim raid.

In 711 CE Tariq Bin Ziyad landed 7,000 fighters at Jabal Tariq, (Gibralter), to begin the invasion of Spain through a continuous northward thrust of raids deeper and deeper into Visigothic territory. After a series of raids in enemy territory a decisive engagement took place at the Battle of Guadalete, [7] Tariq ibn Ziyad defeated King Roderic, the last Visigothic ruler of Hispania, at the Guadalete River in the south of the Iberian Peninsula.

Tariq went on to take Tulaytula, while a detachment under Mugeyth Al-Rumi took Qurtuba. Due to internal strife within the Visigoth kingdom and the discipline of the Mujahideen, the Muslim army easily defeated Roderic’s army of over 20,000 men almost without resistance.
The Islamic armies established control of Andalus as a
Wilayat , (province/governorate), under the Ummayad Khilafa with the capital initially being in Ishbiliyyah, (Seville), while Islamic law was established with the Christians and Jews being given their rights as Ahl Al-Dhimma [8] . At the same time, without wasting a moment, detachments of mujahideen and their commanders fanned out across the peninsula to put down the revolts of the seditious local Christians and continued to push northwards to liberate further Christian territory reaching all the way to Tours in 732 CE wherein they encountered Charles Martel and his armies. Under the command of then Governor of Andalus, Abdul Rahmān Al Ghafiqi faced off against the Franks [9] under Martel at Tours, (which Martel decided due to his familiarity with the terrain), with 60,000 mujahideen, versus Martel’s 30,000 troops. Abdul Rahmān assumed these were just one of the many numerous rebellious barbarian tribes that had ravaged the Romans, (i.e. ragtag and without troop discipline, preferring to overwhelm the enemy without recourse to any particularly clever strategy), and that Martel was just one of the many tribal leaders that were not particularly motivated, and would either flee or negotiate after a few skirmishes. However, he was proven wrong, as Martel executed a victory by using the land to his advantage by employing a phalanx[10] formation and fighting downhill, (to negate cavalry charges that would have to charge uphill). Notably, Martel fought without cavalry, (i.e. horses), which would be the equivalent of a modern national army going into battle with only infantry, (i.e. no planes, tanks, trucks, or satellites). Moreover, a rumor spread during the battle that Martel’s men had snuck into the Muslim camp to steal the ghaneema (booty/spoils). As soon as the call went out, the mujahideen raced to rear camp to defend their apparently besieged
ghaneema while leaving this commander and a few detachments exposed to Frankish attacks, (in a replay of the Battle of Uhud [11] all over again), leading to the death of Abd Al Rahmān .

His army routed the Muslim army with many mujahideen and, their commander, Abd Al Rahmān Ghafiqi attaining
Shahada, that most loftiest of stations [12] . Losses upon the Muslim army were estimated to be approximately 10,000. In the aftermath, disunity on part of the Muslim army destroyed any chance of a real counterattack which could have stolen victory from the jaws of defeat, in that, the commanders in the Mujahideen camp could not decide on whom to nominate to lead them and fell into dispute. All the while, Martel capitalized on this and continued bringing the fight to the mujahideen. On this point, the Quranic viewpoint has to be examined, (and it is important in spite of the fact, this is supposed to be a brief introduction to the topic of Muslims after the fall of Andalus), along with the strategic military shortfalls as well. Allah ( ﺳﺒﺤﺎﻧﻪ ﻭ ﺗﻌﻠﻰ ) says:

ﻭَﻟَﻘَﺪْ ﺻَﺪَﻗَﻜُﻢُ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻭَﻋْﺪَﻩُ ﺇِﺫْ ﺗَﺤُﺴُّﻮﻧَﻬُﻢْ ﺑِﺈِﺫْﻧِﻪِ ﺣَﺘَّﻰ ﺇِﺫَﺍ ﻓَﺸِﻠْﺘُﻢْ ﻭَﺗَﻨَـﺰَﻋْﺘُﻢْ ﻓِﻰ ﺍﻻٌّﻣْﺮِ ﻭَﻋَﺼَﻴْﺘُﻢْ ﻣِّﻦ ﺑَﻌْﺪِ ﻣَﺂ ﺃَﺭَﺍﻛُﻢْ ﻣَّﺎ ﺗُﺤِﺒُّﻮﻥَ ﻣِﻨﻜُﻢ ﻣَّﻦ ﻳُﺮِﻳﺪُ ﺍﻟﺪُّﻧْﻴَﺎ ﻭَﻣِﻨﻜُﻢ ﻣَّﻦ ﻳُﺮِﻳﺪُ ﺍﻻٌّﺧِﺮَﺓَ ﺛُﻢَّ ﺻَﺮَﻓَﻜُﻢْ ﻋَﻨْﻬُﻢْ ﻟِﻴَﺒْﺘَﻠِﻴَﻜُﻢْ ﻭَﻟَﻘَﺪْ ﻋَﻔَﺎ ﻋَﻨْﻜُﻢْ ﻭَﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﺫُﻭ ﻓَﻀْﻞٍ ﻋَﻠَﻰ ﺍﻟْﻤُﺆْﻣِﻨِﻴﻦَ – ﺇِﺫْ ﺗُﺼْﻌِﺪُﻭﻥَ ﻭَﻻَ ﺗَﻠْﻮُﻭﻥَ ﻋَﻠَﻰ ﺃﺣَﺪٍ ﻭَﺍﻟﺮَّﺳُﻮﻝُ ﻳَﺪْﻋُﻮﻛُﻢْ ﻓِﻰ ﺃُﺧْﺮَﺍﻛُﻢْ ﻓَﺄَﺛَـﺒَﻜُﻢْ ﻏَﻤّﺎً ﺑِﻐَﻢٍّ ﻟِّﻜَﻴْﻼَ ﺗَﺤْﺰَﻧُﻮﺍْ ﻋَﻠَﻰ ﻣَﺎ ﻓَﺎﺗَﻜُﻢْ ﻭَﻻَ ﻣَﺂ ﺃَﺻَـﺒَﻜُﻢْ ﻭَﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﺧَﺒِﻴﺮٌ ﺑِﻤَﺎ ﺗَﻌْﻤَﻠُﻮﻥ 13

And Allah did indeed fulfill His promise to you when you were killing them (your enemy) with His permission; until Fashiltum [14] and fell to disputing about the order, and disobeyed after He showed you what you love. Among you are some that desire this world and some that desire the Hereafter. Then He made you flee from them, that He might test you. But surely, He forgave you, and Allah is Most Gracious to the believers.

(And remember) when you ran away without even casting a side glance at anyone, and the Messenger was in your rear calling you back. There did Allah give you one distress after another by way of requital, to teach you not to grieve for that which had escaped you, nor for what struck you. And Allah is Well-Aware of all that you do.

Ibn Kathir States in these verses, (regarding The Battle of Uhud), about how the Archers on the peak of Uhud disobeyed the orders of Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ), with the desire to to not miss out on attaining Ghaneema from the apparently defeated Makkan coalition.

He states:
This Ayah means, Allah gave them the upper hand to try and test you, O believers…He forgave the error you committed, because, and Allah knows best, the idolators were many and well supplied, while Muslims had few men and few supplies.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Al-Bara’ radhiyallahu anhu said, “We met the idolators on that day (Uhud) and the Prophet appointed ‘Abdullah bin Jubayr as the commander of the archers. He instructed them, ‘Retain your position, and if you see that we have defeated them, do not abandon your positions. If you see that they defeated us, do not rush to help us.’ The disbelievers gave flight when we met them, and we saw their women fleeing up the mountain while lifting up their clothes revealing their anklets and their legs. So, the companions (of ‘Abdullah bin Jubayr) said, ‘The booty, the booty!’ ‘Abdullah bin Jubayr said, ‘Allah’s Messenger commanded me not to allow you to abandon your position.’ They refused to listen, and when they left their position, Muslims were defeated and seventy of them were killed. Abu Sufyan shouted, ‘Is Muhammad present among these people’ The Prophet said, ‘Do not answer him.’ Then he asked, ‘Is the son of Abu Quhafah (Abu Bakr) present among these people’ The Prophet said, ‘Do not answer him.’ He asked again, ‘Is the son of Al-Khattab (‘Umar) present among these people As for these (men), they have been killed, for had they been alive, they would have answered me.’ ‘Umar could not control himself and said (to Abu Sufyan), ‘You lie, O enemy of Allah! The cause of your misery is still present.’ Abu Sufyan said, ‘O Hubal, be high!’ On that the Prophet said (to his Companions), ‘Answer him back.’ They said, ‘What shall we say’ He said, ‘Say, Allah is Higher and more Sublime.’ Abu Sufyan said, ‘We have the (idol) Al-‘Uzza, and you have no ‘Uzza.’ The Prophet said, ‘Answer him back.’ They asked, ‘What shall we say’ He said, ‘Say, Allah is our protector and you have no protector.’ Abu Sufyan said, ‘Our victory today is vengeance for yours in the battle of Badr, and in war (the victory) is always undecided and is shared in turns by the belligerents. You will find some of your killed men mutilated, but I did not urge my men to do so, yet I do not feel sorry for their deed.’ [15]

”Only Al-Bukhari collected this Hadith using this chain of narration. Muhammad bin Ishaq said that, ‘Abdullah bin Az-Zubayr narrated that Az-Zubayr bin Al-‘Awwam said, “By Allah! I saw the female servants and female companions of Hind (Abu Sufyan’s wife) when they uncovered their legs and gave flight. At that time, there was no big or small effort separating us from capturing them. However, the archers went down the mount when the enemy gave flight from the battlefield, seeking to collect the booty. They uncovered our back lines to the horsemen of the disbelievers, who took the chance and attacked us from behind. Then a person shouted, ‘Muhammad has been killed.’ So we pulled back, and the disbelievers followed us, after we had killed those who carried their flag, and none of them dared to come close the flag, until then.”’ Muhammad bin Ishaq said next, “The flag of the disbelievers was left on the ground until ‘Amrah bint ‘Alqamah Al-Harithiyyah picked it up and gave it to the Quraysh who held it.” [16]

Allah said,

﴿ ﺛُﻢَّ ﺻَﺮَﻓَﻜُﻢْ ﻋَﻨْﻬُﻢْ ﻟِﻴَﺒْﺘَﻠِﻴَﻜُﻢْ ﴾
Then He made you flee from them, that He might test you… [17]

…Allah said,

ﻟِّﻜَﻴْﻼَ ﺗَﺤْﺰَﻧُﻮﺍْ ﻋَﻠَﻰ ﻣَﺎ ﻓَﺎﺗَﻜُﻢْ
by way of requital to teach you not to grieve for that which had escaped you, for that you missed the booty and triumph over your enemy…

Imam Ibn Kathir rahimahullah Continues:

ﺛُﻢَّ ﺃَﻧﺰَﻝَ ﻋَﻠَﻴْﻜُﻢْ ﻣِّﻦ ﺑَﻌْﺪِ ﺍﻟْﻐَﻢِّ ﺃَﻣَﻨَﺔً ﻧُّﻌَﺎﺳﺎً ﻳَﻐْﺸَﻰ ﻃَﺂﺋِﻔَﺔً ﻣِّﻨْﻜُﻢْ ﻭَﻃَﺂﺋِﻔَﺔٌ ﻗَﺪْ ﺃَﻫَﻤَّﺘْﻬُﻢْ ﺃَﻧْﻔُﺴُﻬُﻢْ ﻳَﻈُﻨُّﻮﻥَ ﺑِﺎﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻏَﻴْﺮَ ﺍﻟْﺤَﻖِّ ﻇَﻦَّ ﺍﻟْﺠَـﻬِﻠِﻴَّﺔِ ﻳَﻘُﻮﻟُﻮﻥَ ﻫَﻞ ﻟَّﻨَﺎ ﻣِﻦَ ﺍﻻٌّﻣْﺮِ ﻣِﻦ ﺷَﻰْﺀٍ ﻗُﻞْ ﺇِﻥَّ ﺍﻻٌّﻣْﺮَ ﻛُﻠَّﻪُ ﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﻳُﺨْﻔُﻮﻥَ ﻓِﻰ ﺃَﻧْﻔُﺴِﻬِﻢ ﻣَّﺎ ﻻَ ﻳُﺒْﺪُﻭﻥَ ﻟَﻚَ ﻳَﻘُﻮﻟُﻮﻥَ ﻟَﻮْ ﻛَﺎﻥَ ﻟَﻨَﺎ ﻣِﻦَ ﺍﻻٌّﻣْﺮِ ﺷَﻰْﺀٌ ﻣَّﺎ ﻗُﺘِﻠْﻨَﺎ ﻫَـﻬُﻨَﺎ ﻗُﻞ ﻟَّﻮْ ﻛُﻨﺘُﻢْ ﻓِﻰ ﺑُﻴُﻮﺗِﻜُﻢْ ﻟَﺒَﺮَﺯَ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﻛُﺘِﺐَ ﻋَﻠَﻴْﻬِﻢُ ﺍﻟْﻘَﺘْﻞُ ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﻣَﻀَﺎﺟِﻌِﻬِﻢْ ﻭَﻟِﻴَﺒْﺘَﻠِﻰَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻣَﺎ ﻓِﻰ ﺻُﺪُﻭﺭِﻛُﻢْ ﻭَﻟِﻴُﻤَﺤِّﺺَ ﻣَﺎ ﻓِﻰ ﻗُﻠُﻮﺑِﻜُﻢْ ﻭَﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻋَﻠِﻴﻢٌ ﺑِﺬَﺍﺕِ ﺍﻟﺼُّﺪُﻭﺭِ – ﺇِﻥَّ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﺗَﻮَﻟَّﻮْﺍْ ﻣِﻨﻜُﻢْ ﻳَﻮْﻡَ ﺍﻟْﺘَﻘَﻰ ﺍﻟْﺠَﻤْﻌَﺎﻥِ ﺇِﻧَّﻤَﺎ ﺍﺳْﺘَﺰَﻟَّﻬُﻢُ ﺍﻟﺸَّﻴْﻄَـﻦُ ﺑِﺒَﻌْﺾِ ﻣَﺎ ﻛَﺴَﺒُﻮﺍْ ﻭَﻟَﻘَﺪْ ﻋَﻔَﺎ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻋَﻨْﻬُﻢْ ﺇِﻥَّ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪَ ﻏَﻔُﻮﺭٌ ﺣَﻠِﻴﻢ 18

Then after the distress, He sent down security for you. Slumber overtook a party of you, while another party was thinking about themselves and thought wrongly of Allah — the thought of ignorance. They said, “Have we any part in the affair” Say: “Indeed the affair belongs wholly to Allah.” They hide within themselves what they dare not reveal to you, saying: “If we had anything to do with the affair, none of us would have been killed here.” Say: “Even if you had remained in your homes, those for whom death was decreed would certainly have gone forth to the place of their death,”
but that Allah might test what is in your breasts; and to purify that which was in your hearts (sins), and Allah is All-Knower of what is in the breasts.
Those of you who turned back on the day the two hosts met, Shaytan only caused them to err because of some of what they had earned. But Allah, indeed, has forgiven them. Surely, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Forbearing.
The second group mentioned in the Ayah were the hypocrites who only thought about themselves, for they are the most cowardly people and those least likely to support the truth…

ﻭَﻃَﺂﺋِﻔَﺔٌ ﻗَﺪْ ﺃَﻫَﻤَّﺘْﻬُﻢْ ﺃَﻧْﻔُﺴُﻬُﻢْ

While another party was thinking about themselves,” and they were not overcome by slumber because of their worry, fright and fear…
Similarly, Allah said in another statement,

ﺑَﻞْ ﻇَﻨَﻨْﺘُﻢْ ﺃَﻥ ﻟَّﻦ ﻳَﻨﻘَﻠِﺐَ ﺍﻟﺮَّﺳُﻮﻝُ ﻭَﺍﻟْﻤُﺆْﻣِﻨُﻮﻥَ ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﺃَﻫْﻠِﻴﻬِﻢْ ﺃَﺑَﺪﺍً

“Nay, but you thought that the Messenger and the believers would never return to their families” [19] .

This group thought that the idolators achieved ultimate victory, when their forces took the upper hand in battle, and that Islam and its people would perish. This is typical of people of doubt and hesitation, in the event of a hardship, they fall into such evil thoughts…

…Allah the Exalted said,

ﻗُﻞ ﻟَّﻮْ ﻛُﻨﺘُﻢْ ﻓِﻰ ﺑُﻴُﻮﺗِﻜُﻢْ ﻟَﺒَﺮَﺯَ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﻳﻦَ ﻛُﺘِﺐَ ﻋَﻠَﻴْﻬِﻢُ ﺍﻟْﻘَﺘْﻞُ ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﻣَﻀَﺎﺟِﻌِﻬِﻢْ

“Say: “Even if you had remained in your homes, those for whom death was decreed would certainly have gone forth to the place of their death,”

Meaning, this is Allah’s appointed destiny and a decision that will certainly come to pass, and there is no escaping it. Allah’s statement,

ﻭَﻟِﻴَﺒْﺘَﻠِﻰَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻣَﺎ ﻓِﻰ ﺻُﺪُﻭﺭِﻛُﻢْ ﻭَﻟِﻴُﻤَﺤِّﺺَ ﻣَﺎ ﻓِﻰ ﻗُﻠُﻮﺑِﻜُﻢْ

“That Allah might test what is in your breasts; and to purify that which was in your hearts,” means, so that He tests you with whatever befell you, to distinguish good from evil and the deeds and statements of the believers from those of the hypocrites…

After that lengthy explanation by Imam Ibn Kathir rahimahullah, the point to drive home is that at Uhud, what destroyed the battle strategy was a combination of indiscipline, disobeying orders, (and at that, the Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ) orders), their fear of the enemy and dying, weak iman and greed for Ghaneema . All of these factors slot almost identically into the loss at Tours.

Strategically speaking, the battle preperations by the Muslim army were too hasty to say the least, and their reconnaissance of Martel’s troop numbers and capabilities were poor and based more on bravado than on old-fashioned reconnaissance and intelligence. Secondly, Abd Al-Rahmān’s army made the massive mistake of allowing the native enemy to choose the battlefield, which was disastrous in this case, as Martel lured the mujahideen in a battlefield where he negated their advantages (i.e. cavalry/horses), and minimized his weakness, (his weakness of not having cavalry). Furthermore his troops were better drilled and trained and had greater battle experience, (almost four years of fighting together as a unit prior to this engagement), whereas the mujahideen were rag-tag with some who had battle experience, and some who merely went along for the ghaneema. This indiscipline first led to the collapse of the Muslim base camp but moreover led to the later confusion in succession of leadership, (in that the Mujahideen failed to make appropriate preparation for the possible event of their commander being killed). To avoid these problems, or at the very least, to avoid a repition of these mistakes in future or current battles, the lessons learnt are:

* Rigorous training for Rank and File: Discipline is always needed in high pressure situations and it makes the difference between victory and defeat. This includes sticking to standard procedures and not making assumptions that are not based on facts on the ground. By that I mean:

1. Making sure a tentative battle plan is in place

2. Making sure to always do adequate Recon of target in question

3. Drafting a comprehensive Plan of Battle: by drafting an Order of Battle by incorporating intelligence, (both of troop capabilities and Geographical Intelligence of enemy location, and if it is suitable for a confrontation, and if not, where is the best place to engage them).

4. Then finally, give the order to execute

Contingency Planning: Put in place a succession plan of leadership, in the case of death of first layer of leadership, with procedures to deal with the prevailing situations in order to avoid drop in morale and coordination of troops.

Intelligence and Recon: These two components are integral to battlefield domination and victory. If it is defective, then the army’s preparation may not be equipped properly for the enemy they will face, which might possibly lead to loss of life and defeat.

The battle marked the northernmost point of the spread of the Islamic Dawa’ , wherein afterward, no raid or campaign was quite so adventurous to venture that far north. Subsequently, after this battle, the Berbers of North Africa and, later, the people of Al Andalus rebelled against the Ummayad Government in place in 739 CE in the
Maghribain , (North Africa and Andalus), due to their grievance that the government was not inclusive of Berbers and was discriminatory towards them. This revolt lasted four years wherein, soon after the Ummayad Dynasty was overthrown by the Abbasids in 749 CE. At this time, an Ummayad Emir, Abd Al Rahmān Al Dakhil, (Abd Al Rahmān I), escaped from the clutches of the Abbasid death squads and made his way out of Iraq, zig-zagging his way through Sham , North Africa and then finally to Andalus, where he established, (after numerous battles), the Ummayad Emirate of Qurtuba in 756 CE. The Emirate lasted till 929 CE and intermittent Christian rebellion continued throughout this period along with infighting between Muslims, (Berber vs. Arabs, New Muslims vs. Old Muslims, Shami’s vs. Yemeni’s etc.). A notable event during this period was the jihad declared by Hisham bin Abd Al-Rahmān Al-Dakhil, (Hisham I), in 792 CE against the Christians in France and Andalus. Tens of thousands of Muslim flocked from as far away as Sham to join the
jihad .

Another notable event during this period came in 850-859 CE, when Perfectus, a pagan Christian priest in Muslim-ruled Córdoba, is beheaded after he refuses to retract numerous insults he made about Muhammad ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ). He is reported to have said that the The Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ), was a “…false Prophets foretold by Christ and as a moral reprobate who had seduced the wife of his kinsman.” [20] Similar things were said by the remainder of this Christian contingent. Numerous other priests, monks, and laity would follow as Christians became caught up in a zest for ‘martyrdom.’ In total forty-eight Christian men and women are decapitated for refusing to convert or blaspheming Muhammad. They are known as the Martyrs of Córdoba. One cannot help but wonder if the same is reoccurring as the ‘Martyrs of Free Speech’ lead their crusade against the character of the Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ ), are merely a repitition of the above misguided individuals? Their end will probably be the same as of their idols, but I digress, more on that later in the conclusion.

The next significant development is the resurrection of the Ummayad khilafa in Andalus in 929 CE. How did it come about?? Abd al-Rahmān ibn Muhammad ibn ʿAbd Allāh, (Abd Al Rahmān III), faced with the threat of invasion by the Fatimids[21] , proclaims himself khalifa of Qurtuba, breaking all ties with the Abbasid khilafat in Baghdad. Under the reign of Abd al-Rahmān III, (and his fore-runners), Al Andalus reaches its greatest height with military expansion and waging Jihad against the Christians to the north continuously. However by 1008, Muhammad Al Thani Al Mahdi, (Muhammad II) – great-grandson of Abd al-Rahmān III – deposes Hisham II as khalifa, (Hisham will get reinstated in 1010 but then subsequently deposed and killed by rebel Berbers in 1013 while they massacre half the population of Qurtuba). The period of anarchy over the next 23 years is what resulted, albeit slowly, the fragmentation of Andalus into 30+ Tawaif (groups/separate kingdoms), due to internal infighting, palace intrigues, Christian unity and increasing strength of Christian forces.



[1] Narrated in Imam Ahmed’s Musnad (18189), Imam Bukhari’s Tareekh Al Kabir (1760), and Al Hakim’s
Mustadrak (8300)

[2] Carthage was one of a number of Phoenician settlements in the western Mediterranean that was created to facilitate trade from the cities of Sidon, Tyre and others from Phoenicia, which was situated in the coast of what is now Syria, Lebanon and Israel. In the 3 and 4 Century, it was a power to rival Rome and the leadership of Hannibal and his father before him.

[3] The Second Fitna which took place during 680-692 CE which include the killings of Hussayn Bin Ali, (grandson of the Prophet ( ﺻﻠَّﻰ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ ﻭﺳﻠَّﻢ )), and his followers at the Battle of Karbala, the revolts of Ibn Al-Zubayr and the
khawarij revolts in Iraq and Persia.

[4] They were one of two main branches of the Goths, an East Germanic tribe, the Ostrogoths being the other. Together these tribes were among the barbarians who disturbed the late Roman Empire during the Migration Period. The Visigoths first emerge as a distinct people during the fourth century, initially in the Balkans, where they participated in several wars with Rome. A Visigothic army under Alaric I eventually moved into Italy and famously sacked Rome in 410. By 500 AD they controlled most of Roman Spain as well.

[5] In Arabic, he was named ﻟﺬﺭﻳﻖ

[6] Imam Maqri says that Musa Bin Nusayr wanted to hurry into the invasion, but the khaleefa , Abd Al Malik Ibn Al Waleed, insisted on reconnaissance, showing the military acumen of Abd Al Malik Ibn Al Waleed. In hindsight, his foresight paid off.

[7] Muslim historians placed this battle at slightly different places, as, according to Abd Al Hakam in Futūh Misr , said the battle took place at Medina Sidonia or
Shedunya , while others specified further that it at happened at Wadi Lakka , which is identified as the Guadelete River.

[8] The people of the dhimma or pact of protection which is the one whose dhimma (responsibility of protection has been taken) is a non-Muslim subject of a land governed in accordance with the Sharia. The obligation of the state is to protect the Dhimmi’s life, property, and freedom of religion, (which does not include proselytization), and worship, and required loyalty to the empire, while charging a poll tax known as the jizya, and exemption from military service.

[9] West Germanic tribes first identified in the 3rd century as an ethnic group living north and east of the Lower Rhine. Under the Merovingian dynasty, they founded one of the Germanic monarchies which replaced the Western Roman Empire from the 5th century. The Frankish state consolidated its hold over large parts of western Europe by the end of the eighth century and the Carolingian Empire and its successor states were Frankish.

[10] A rectangular mass military formation, usually composed entirely of heavy infantry armed with spears, pikes, or similar weapons. The term is particularly (and originally) used to describe the use of this formation in Ancient Greek warfare. The word phalanx is derived from the Greek word phalangos , meaning the finger.

[11] A battle that occurred near Jabal Uhud, (near Medina), in 625 AD/3 AH between the Muslims and the Makkan Quraysh a year after the Battle of Badr.

[12] It is for that very reason that this battle is called by Muslim historians ﻣﻌﺮﻛﺔ ﺑﻼﻁ ﺍﻟﺸﻬﺪﺍﺀ or The Battle of the Court of Martyrs
[13] Surah Al Imran, Verses 152-153

[14] Ibn Katheer says in his Tafseer that: “Ibn Jurayj said that Ibn ‘Abbas said that Fashiltum means, ‘lost courage’.” In this context it is “…you lost courage”

[15] Sahih Bukhari

[16] Sahih Bukhari

[17] Surah Al Imran, Verse 152

[18] Surah Al Imran, Verse(s) 154-155

[19] Surah Al Fath, Ayah 12


[21] Ismaili Shia dynasty operating out of Egypt


“With the royal banners and the cross of Pagan Christians plainly visible on the red walls of the Alhambra: …the Moorish king with about eighty or a hundred on horseback very well dressed went forth to kiss the hand of their Highnesses. Whom they received with much love and courtesy and there they handed over to him his son, who had been a hostage from the time of his capture, and as they stood there, there came about four hundred captives, of this who were in the enclosure, with the cross and a solemn procession singing the Te Deum Laudamus [a devotional hymn], and their highnesses dismounted to adore the Cross to the accompaniment of the tears and reverential devotion of the crowd…and the Moorish King and the Moors who were with him for their part could not disguise the sadness and pain they felt for the joy of the Christians, and certainly with much reason on account of their loss, for Granada is the most distinguished and chief thing in the world…”[1]

The date was the second of January, 1492, and the occasion was the procession of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella into the Al Hamra,’ something which was not even imaginable by Spanish Monarchs up till one hundred years prior. When Tariq Ibn Ziyaad(Rahimahullah)marched across Jabal Tariq and into Andalus to liberate it from the Visigoths, he would have shuddered to think that within eight hundred years, Muslims would not only be defeated in Andalus, where the pure blood of thousands of mujahideen under his command flowed and shahada was attained, but that Islam itself would be expelled from it within in a further hundred years. Coincidentally, the same year Tariq (rahimahullah) invaded Andalus was also the same year, at the tender age of 17, Muhammad bin Qasim Al-Thaqafi (rahimahullah), The noble Ummayad Qa’id and Mujahid, under order of the Khalifa Walid I, raided Sindh in retaliation to Hindu Pirate raids launched from there and established Ummayad control over Sind, (and later Punjab). Would Tariq (rahimahullah)have imagined Andalus’s fate when he landed upon those shores and made his famous speech as recounted by Imam Maqri in Al Nafh Al Tib :

“Oh my warriors, whither would you flee? Behind you is the sea, before you, the enemy. By Allāh! there is no salvation for you but in your courage and perseverance. Consider your situation;-here you are on this island like so many orphans cast upon the world; you will soon be met by a powerful enemy, surrounding you on all sides like the infuriated billows of a tempestuous seas, and sending against you countless warriors, drowned in steel, and provided with every store and description of arms. What can you oppose them [with]? You have no other weapons than your swords, no provisions but those that you may snatch from the hands of your enemies…Banish all fear from your hearts, trust that victory shall be ours, and that the barbarian king will not be able to withstand the shock of our arms. Here he comes to make us the masters of his cities and castles, and to deliver into our hands his countless treasures; and if you only seize the opportunity now presented, it may perhaps be the means of your becoming the owners of them [2] , besides saving yourself from certain death. Do not think that I impose upon you a task from which I shrink myself, or that I try to conceal from you the dangers attending this expedition. No: you have certainly a great deal to encounter, but know that if you only suffer for a while, you will reap in the end an abundant harvest of pleasures and enjoyments. And do not imagine that while I speak to you I mean not to act as I speak, for as my interest in this is greater, so will my behavior on this occasion surpass yours [3] . You know well that the khalifa Abdu-l-Malik Ibnu-l-Waleed has chosen you, like so many heroes from among the brave; you know that the great lords of this island are willing to make you their sons and brethren in marriage, if you only rush on like so many brave men to the fight, and behave like true champions and valiant knights; you know that the recompenses of Allāh await you if you are prepared to uphold His word, and proclaim his deen in this peninsula…Bear in mind that Allāh (ﺗﻌﻠﻰ ) will select, according to this promise, those that distinguish themselves most among you, and grant them due reward both in this world and the hereafter and know likewise that I shall be the first to set you the example, and to put in practice what I recommend you to do [4] ; for it is my intention, on the meeting of the two hosts, to attack the Christian tyrant Roderic and kill him with my own hand, Insha’Allāh . When you see me bearing against him, charge along with me; if I kill him, the victory is ours; if I am killed before I reach him, do not trouble yourselves about me, but fight as if I were still alive and among you, and follow up my purpose…If, however, I should be killed, after inflicting death upon their king, appoint a man from among you who unites both courage and experience, and may command you in this emergency, and follow up the success. If you follow my instructions, we are sure of victory, (Makkari, The History of the Mohammedan Dynasties in Spain, Vol. 1, 310-311) [5] “
Tariq’s (rahimahullah) troops replied resoundingly thus:

ﻗﺪ ﻗﻄﻌﻨﺎ ﺍﻵﻣﺎﻝ ﻣﻤﺎ ﻳﺨﺎﻟﻒ ﻣﺎ ﻋﺰﻣﺖ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ، ﻓﺎﺣﻀﺮ ﺇﻟﻴﻪ ﻓﺈﻧﻨﺎ ﻣﻌﻚ ﻭﺑﻴﻦ ﻳﺪﻳﻚ

“We are ready to follow you, O Tariq! We shall all, to the last man, stand by you, and fight for you; nor could we avoid it were we otherwise disposed… (ibid, 311). [6] “

The sacrifices and victories that laid the foundation of the western frontier of Islam, (or as Arabs referred to it as one of the Maghribain , or the ‘west’s’ in reference to North Western Africa and Andalus), seemingly had gone to waste and many Muslims of today see it as a period of nostalgia and of glory lost. We remember it as a time where Muslims excelled in the science, Fiqh, Philosophy and numerous other fields. Unfortunately, confusion is our lot due to not only our military defeats and conquest at the hands of the
Kuffaar over the previous five hundred years in every part of the world and at the hand of every kafir nation, but also the mental colonization that has taken place in the minds of not only the previous generations, but the youth as well. We have been led to believe Andalus was a land of Convivencia , (Coexistence), between Islam, Christianity and Judaism and Western or Western influenced Muslim Scholars reiterate the examples of the translation schools in Tulaytulah, (Toledo), where apparently Muslims and Jews worked together to translate books of Plato and Aristotle, or of the ‘ Zambra [7] ‘ and the musical styles of Andalus, since these worldly and Batil (Falsehood), things are what the West is interested in studying.

Subsequently they disseminate these views through scholarly work, wherein they then work their way down to the masses, (Muslim and non-Muslim alike). However, Muslims that read these books seem to forget that Andalus was the land of jihad, where continuous Ghazwa ‘s took place on the frontier, ( Thagr ) against the Kuffaar in the lands beyond the Pyrenees up to Tours in France, (which is merely a few hundred kilometres from Paris). It was a place where talented
Fuquha , (almost all Maliki), vigorously carried out their duty of guiding the masses and enjoining the good and forbidding the evil, (Amr Bil Ma’aroof wa Nahya A’nil Munkar).

On the other hand, those of us that can read Arabic and took the time and trouble to read Muslim sources on the history of Andalus in Arabic, then the picture is certainly clearer with the glaring and the almost inexplicable abrupt end to the account of Islam in Spain. As I explained earlier, for reasons that I will touch upon in the conclusion of this work, Muslim historians’ account of Islamic Spain ends in 1492 with the capitulation treaty being signed between Abu AbdAllāh Muhammad Ithna Ashr (The 12 ), which surrendered the Emirate of Garnata (Granada) to the Spanish, but at the same time allowed the Muslims that remained in the Emirate, full freedom of worship and protected their rights, (going as far as even promising to punish anyone who peers into a Muslim household).

The agreement seemed to be made binding upon the Spanish Crown of Castille but as we shall see, it was broken within ten years after the agreement was put into effect, (I have included terms of the capitulation from Carvajal’s account in Appendix G and Imam Maqri’s in I). Great insight is offered on the issue of the Moriscos and Muslims in Spain after 1492, and the ambivlance shown by Muslims towards the issue by Prof. L.P. Harvey of the University of Chicago:

It is surprising that there has been so little debate within the Islamic world about this final aspect of the experience of Spains Muslims. In 1991, when the Islamic peoples are in the midst of a great debate on where they stand in relation to the modern western world, the experience of the Moriscos is not without relevance. Rather than focus on the Moriscos, however, modern Muslims seem to prefer to direct their attention towards other aspects of the experience of Andalus, on the philosophers of the 5 /11 -7 /13 centuries, or on the heroic conquerors of earlier periods, (Manuela, ‘Handbuch Der Orientalistik,’ 303).”

Undoubtedly, a clear understanding of this most complicated, (but nonetheless, important), of histories can not be attempted until we briefly recap Andalus’s history to bring the issue at hand, (Muslims in Andalus post-1492), in perspective.


[1] From a Letter of an eyewitness to the surrender of the Al Hamra’ to the Bishop of Leon

[2] SubhanAllah! Even though they are heavily outnumbered and are facing what most military strategists would have said was definite defeat and death, here Tariq is saying that Roderic has come to the battlefield to make the Muslims masters of the land of Andalus! He epitomized fearlessness and tawakkul on the battlefield.

[3] Unlike our rulers of today, Tariq says that not only will he give the orders and be on the field with his men, but he will surpass them in taking risks, courage and bravery!

[4] He practiced what he preached, once again, unlike our rulers and military commanders today.

[5] In the Arabic edition, this quotation is located in Vol. 1, on page(s) 240-241

[6] The translator did a sloppy job of this quote. I would have translated it like this: “We have already cut off any hope of what differs from your plan upon him [Roderic], So [lets] go to [fight] him [Roderic]. Verily we are with you and under your command!” And Allah knows best.

[7] In Maghrebi Arabic spoken in Morocco, ‘ zambra ‘, (in Arabic Zamra’ ), means party. Originally this Arabic term was used to describe the noises made by the sounds of lively crowds and certain musical instruments, such as in a party or celebration. The term was applied during the 15th century in Spain when the Muslims continuted their famous and traditional celebrations of song, dance, music, joke and story telling or ‘ Zamr.’ Documents dated to the 1600’s describe the Zamra’ as festivities with the music of wind instruments such as the sounds of pipes and flutes. These were banned by the Kingdom of Spain in the 16 century as sign of Muslim culture, (as were other things such as hijab and salat among many others). ‘Zambra’ could also mean a band of musicians and may have derived from the Arabic word “Samra’” that meant an ‘evening party that went on all night’ or ‘zamara’ meaning ‘musicians.’ The word was also been used to describe an ‘uproar’ or ‘sound of certain instruments and muffled voices with merry-making. If any one was curious, the custom of shouting ‘ole’ in Spain, (generally and in the dance called Flamenco), is derived from the Arabic expression Wa’Allah (‘By Allah’) that was presumably used during the Zamra’ dances.