Rebuttal to Ali Sina's article "Looting"


By
Bassam Zawadi

 

 


Introduction

This article is in response to Ali Sina's article "Looting" which can be accessed here http://www.faithfreedom.org/Articles/sina/looting.htm

The argument has already been dealt with in great detail in this article http://www.answering-christianity.com/muhammads_share.htm, however I would like to try and add some more points. 

I am not going to be placing Ali Sina's article here because it is offensive and rude. He insults the Glorious Prophet Muhammad and therefore I would prefer not posting his text here. If you would like to see what he has written,  you can visit his article. I already placed the link above. 

When armies go at war, one side wins and the other loses obviously. The side that loses not only lose the battle but also lose their possessions. Their houses, armor, food, wealth etc. Now I am going to be showing what the Muslims did with the spoils of war. They did not loot it like how Ali Sina makes it to look like. The Muslims took it legally (because it was during time of war) and they used it legally. I am going to be presenting Islam's perspective and rules regarding this issue.

 

Taken from http://www.jamaat.org/islam/HumanRightsEnemies.html

5. No looting and destruction in the enemy's country

Muslims have been instructed by the Prophet not to pillage or plunder or destroy residential areas, nor harm the property of anyone not fighting. It has been narrated in the Hadith: "The Prophet has prohibited the Believers from loot and plunder" (Bukhari, AbuDawood). His injunction is: "The loot is no more lawful than the carrion" (AbuDawood). AbuBakr Siddeeq used to tell soldiers on their way to war: "Do not destroy the villages and towns, do not spoil the cultivated fields and gardens, and do not slaughter the cattle."

Booty of war from the battleground is altogether different. It consists of the wealth, provisions and equipment captured from the camps and military headquarters of the combatant armies and may legitimately be appropriated.

 

Taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prophet_Muhammad

War

Relations between Mecca and Medina rapidly worsened (see surat al-Baqara.) Meccans confiscated all the property that the Muslims had left in Mecca. In Medina, Muhammad signed treaties of alliance and mutual help with neighboring tribes.

Muhammad turned to raiding caravans bound for Mecca. Caravan raiding was an old Arabian tradition; later Muslim apologists justified the raids by the state of war deemed to exist between the Meccans and the Muslims. Secular scholars will add that this was a matter of survival for the Muslims as well. They owned no land in Medina and if they did not raid, they would have to live on charity and whatever wage labor they could find.  

 

Taken from http://www.islamonline.net/surah/english/viewSurah.asp?hSurahID=18

Topics and their Interconnection

This portion deals with the problems of the "Spoils of War". The Quran says that these are not the spoils of war but the "Bounties of Allah" and proves this by showing that the victory at Badr (and in all other battles, too,) was won by His succour and not by the efforts of the Muslims. It also declares (in v. 40) that the war aim of the Muslims should be to eliminate all unfavourable conditions for the establishment of Islam and not to gain spoils. Moreover, the spoils, being the bounties of God, belong to Allah and His Messenger and they alone are entitled to allocate them. Then after conditioning the Muslims to accept these things, the different shares have been allocated in v. 41. 1 - 41  

Taken from http://www.irfi.org/articles/articles_251_300/social_security_in_islam.htm

Department of Public Treasury

State revenue is the most important tool for providing social security to a nation. During the Caliphate of ?Umar ibn al-Khattab, the income of the treasury department had immensely increased due to his wise and strict administrative policies. Zakah (religious obligation on a Muslim to pay 2½% from his/her wealth), ?ushr (religious tax on agricultural land), Sadaqah (spending for the pleasure of Allah), jizyah (tax on the non-Muslims for providing security) and khums (the one-fifth of the spoils of war) were credited to the treasury for the use of the Muslims at large. For example, after the battles of Yarmouk and Qãdisiyyah, the Muslims won heavy spoils. The coffers at Madinah al-Munawwarah became full to the brink.

The aim of the Islamic social security system is to fulfil every possible human need. These needs can broadly be classified into two categories: (1) Primary needs i.e., food, clothing, housing and necessary medical care, and (2) Secondary needs i.e., education, matrimony, old age benefits and social services etc.

Caliph 'Umar ibn al-Khattab used Social Security

· To provide Food during serious drought or famines to the people according to the family size.

·  For the poor and disabled

· To provide education to the children

· To finance marriages of the unmarried poor or needy persons.

·  To grant old age benefits and in old age investment

·  To give loans for economic activity

·  For granting Interest-free loans

·  To pay off the debts of persons under obligation

·  As Social Insurance to pay blood money of convicts in involuntary homicide

·  To pay stipends to widows, married and unmarried women, young men and the immigrants.

 

Taken from http://islamic-world.net/economics/public_borrowing_in_history.htm

The sixth case is that of borrowing a substantial sum of money from a Muslim individual for financing a major battle. "Isma'il son of Ibrahim son of Abdullah, son of Abu Rabi'ah al-Makhzumi has reported to us from his father who reported about his grandfather that when the Prophet (peace be upon him) was to attack l:Iunayn he borrowed thirty or forty thousand from him. He repaid it when he came back. Then the Prophet (peace be upon him) told him: 'May Allah bless you with prosperity in your family and your property. The proper recompense for lending is repayment and gratitude'. In another version of this tradition recorded by Nasa'i, the amount of the loan is a definite forty thousand. The same is true of Ahmad ibn Hanbal in his Musnad. As regards the source of payment, both versions mention money that accrued to the Prophet (peace be upon him) subsequently. The battle of Hunayn took place in the eighth year after hijrah immediately after the conquest of Mekkah. These were comparatively better days for state finances. The accrual of money referred to in the tradition could have been from the spoils of war consequent to the victory at Hunayn. The above is clear case of borrowing for defense purposes. It is also evident that the sum paid back equaled the sum borrowed and no extra payment were involved.

 

Taken from http://www.islamonline.net/english/introducingislam/Economics/article03.shtml

When the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) came to Medina, he encouraged the wealthier supporters to financially aid the poor Emigrants. Then, when war booty fell to the lot of the Muslims, he would divide the wealth according to economic condition - the poor segments of the Muslims would receive larger portions. Through such measures, he sought to reduce the gap between rich and poor.

 

Conclusion

      The Muslims did not fight and take the spoils of war for their own personal gain. They used it to help the needy and the poor and to establish a system. They took it in the time of war. They did not invade people intentionally to pillage their towns and villages and to take the booty. It was only during time of war. So they obviously they are going to take it. They are not just going to leave it lying around. It is completely justifiable what they did. As a matter of fact, no army in the world will consume the spoils of war in such a generous and beautiful way as the Muslim armies have done.

 

You can also read 

http://www.studying-islam.org/articletext.aspx?id=679