May 28, 2013 By Sayed Ammar Nakshawani

The fate of Jews at Banu Qurayza

AmmarBelow is the transcrption of the speech by Sheikh Sayed Ammar Nakshawani about the story of the alleged massacre of Jews from Banu Qurayza

There are many events in the life of prophet Muhammed, which we may find it difficult to digest in the context of pluralism. The alleged massacre of Jews of Banu Quraiza has been advertised as the example of Islamic intolerance. If one does not put the event in perspective, one might fall in either of two pits:brazen admission of a jihadist virulent Islam, or blindly tagging the faith with violence. Apology is hardly a solution;but understanding the event in its context which is what Sayed Ali Ammar Nakshawani does in this speech that you’ll find in the following link The transcription, edited for ease of reading, is upto the point and, have slightly abridged.

Respected scholars, brothers and sisters.. Assalasmu alaikum varahmatullah,


The story of the alleged massacre of the Jews of Banu Quraiza in the time of our holy prophet Muhammed (Peace be upon Him) is viewed as one of the most controversial stories in the history of the religion of Islam and  as a blemish on the life and the biography of the holy prophet with many non-Muslim writers constantly pointing towards this story and highlighting the fact that prophet had taught to spread his religion through the swords and that those who disagreed with the opinion of the prophet or the ideology of the prophet or the teachings of the prophet were forced to obey by swords. They say that the Jews of Banu Quraiza or the Jews of Madina were all executed and in some narrations 960 Jews were executed at one time. Therefore you find many coming forward and stating that Islam compels its followers to follow its way, and if a section of people go against it, they will be executed. Those who go against the teachings of Quran, the end of their life will be an end which is seen to be the punishment from God.

Therefore you find there is a need for us to reply to such attacks on the holy prophet; for we find these attacks based on this one story continue until today. You look within certain parts of Europe where depictions of our holy prophet in the form of cartoons were made symbolizing how Muhammed was a man who spread his religion through swords. For example there are depictions where he is carrying the sword in his hand or the fictions where he has a bomb in his turban or you find depictions of him asking his followers to slaughter anyone who comes in their way. These depictions can be seen in places like Denmark and Sweden. When secular countries are asked how it is that they depict the prophet in this way, the reply is that it’s a secular country and satire should be part of the movement of any secular country, if we want to make fun of somebody, who are you to come and stop making fun of them.

All the irony is where you have to talk about the Holocaust, in which case you will face contempt of court right away, whereas you are free to talk about prophet, which is seen as part of satire, part of comedy. And where the Holocaust is a tragedy, a tragic event that  occurred in humanity, in the same way there are people who have feelings related to that event, there are people who have feelings related to the holy prophet, therefore when somebody comes forward and says that prophet killed 960 Jews it is vital for ourselves to ask if have we reevaluated the life of our holy prophet because it’s of the utmost importance that one endeavor to read the biography of the prophet seeks to take examples for one’s life because the study of the biography of the prophet is known in the Arabic language as the study of seera. Seera means the biography of someone, the way that they have lived their life. You may find the biography of prophet, a seera of a prophet, a seera of the companions, a seera of ahlul bayt and that this is a science by itself where you study their life in order to get acquainted with what they went through.

Of the utmost importance is not only studying the incidents in the life of the prophet but also knowing the dates when these incidents occurred, because the book of seera narrates events date by date, year by year, not just events by events. What happened in the first year of hijra is discussed, the second,  third, the fourth and so on. It is vital that we are aware of the dates of the incidents; it is not only the incidents themselves, why? Because without knowing the dates of an incident, the jigsaw puzzle of the life of the prophet has a major hole in it, a gaping hole. If you ask somebody: Do you know about the battle of Badr? They would say to you yes, but when you come to them and you ask when it occurred, they would say they don’t know. If you ask them about the Battle of Khaibar, they’ll say yes, but when you ask them when it occurred they would say ‘we don’t know’; if you ask them how many years the prophet spent in Mecca, many will not know. It’s not something extraordinary to find that many Muslims don’t actually know when the holy prophet did something that he did to the extent that until today there are people who don’t know that Rasulullah died in the 11th year of hijra.

If you go to many Muslims in the world today and ask when resulullah died, many of them either reply we are not sure; or we know it’s around the 63 of his life, but we don’t know hijrawise when it is. Without knowing the dates, then there is no way you can reply to such accusations, why? Because you will then not know how the prophet developed the religion, you will not know how he encountered different groups, and, when he encountered these groups, how he discussed with these groups, therefore there is a need for us not just to discuss the seera of the prophet in terms of the incidents that occurred but also to understand the dates of each incidents. For then it will provide us with a great overview and indeed there is no way a person can understand the life of our holy prophet or can ever get close without following Rasulullah or without studying the life of Rasulullah  The idea is that the path of Rasulullah will lead you towards the path of Allah. Therefore when we examine this area, about 960 Jews who were killed from Banu Quraiza, the examination takes the number of stages. The first of the stages is: What is the position of Jews in the religion of Islam and how this position developed? The second is: what is the context of the revelation of this particular incident?- What happened and why it happened? The third is: how other Jews lived in Madina after this incident and how they were treated. The fourth area is: What is the final part of this verse and why does it say that the Christians are your closest brethren?

When we examine this we would succeed in the topic. Firstly, as we know, the Jews have occupied a prominent position in the Islamic thought. The idea is that Jews are seen as part of the Abrahamic faith. Abrahamic faiths are those faiths which originated with Abraham: we have the religion of Islam; Christianity, Judaism. Abraham plays a major role in Islam and Judaism. For Islam the line of Rasulullah is through Ismail going back to Ibrahim. In Judaism the line of the prophets goes back to Abraham through Isaac. They say that prophet Ibrahim had his son Ishaq, who had his son Ya’qoob-Ya’qoob’s other name is Israel and therefore his sons were called the children of Israel, Banu Israel. You find that the flights and the movements of Banu Israel are all mentioned in the holy Quran, and many of the stories of the holy Quran discuss what happened with the Jews and their message. For example, the story of prophet Musa (AS) is arguably the greatest story in the holy Quran in terms of the number of reference: It tells about Musa; how he grew up in the time of Firaun (Pharaoh); how he was brought up in the court of Firaun; about his leaving Firaun for prophet Shuaib in Madyan; about his marrying the daughter Prophet Shuaib; about his coming back from Madyan to fight Pharaoh; about the council of the magicians; about the defeat of Pharaoh when the Red Sea was open, about the children of Israel, and the Commandments.

All these stories are mentioned in the Quran.  You also find, the story of David and Goliath mentioned in the  Quran. Arguably, the two most important prophets of god in relation to Judaism, are prophet Musa and prophet Dawud. Prophet Dawud is seen as the king of the Jews; the king of the children of Israel.

The Quran also mentions the worship of Uzair as the son of God. Uzair asked God how it was that ‘you raise the dead and make them alive,’ when he went past the town which was dead. He was caused to die for 100 years. And then Allah brought him back to life again where he was able to understand how Allah can resurrect you at any time. The Jews said that Uzair is the son of God and in the same way Christians say Jesus is the son of God; there was also a group of Jews who believed him as son of God. That’s another story. Yet another story of Jews mentioned in Quran is the one which lies in the backdrop of the discussion. The verse is 85:4 which speaks about the Jews of Yemen.

Yemen used to have a great Jewish majority. These Jews used to live under the ruler Yusuf bin Binuaasil Himyani. He used to look after them giving a prominent position. They were allowed to have business and trade they wanted until, the Quran says, they massacred thousands of Christians. There was a mission of vengeance against this massacre, against this holocaust, by Titus, the Roman emperor. Titus heard about the way Jews were treating the Christians in Yemen and therefore he led movement to force the Jews to leave Yemen.

When the Jews left Yemen, where did they go? One opinion is that they went towards Iraq; another opinion is that they went towards Syria. A third opinion is that they went towards Madina. Some ask why they went towards Madina. One opinion is they just went towards Madina because that was a safe place. A Jewish person will not go to a place because it is only a safe place. They went to Madina because in their book it was written down that the Messiah will emerge and build his state in Madina and therefore when they went towards Madina at the time in a wasteland; they went towards Madina in order to settle there, awaiting the Messiah. How many of their tribes went to settle there? Twelve Jewish tribes. Three of them were the most famous tribes, and their names have to be learnt. Banu Kainuka was the first Jewish tribe. The second tribe was Banu Nadir; the third of them was Banu Quraiza, the people who are the topic of our discussion tonight. These Jewish tribes settled in Madina. These three were the most prominent tribes. Their main trade was making ornaments and weapons for war. And they were also loan sharks. They give you loan and if you don’t pay them back they charge you interests. Those of you who want loan are more than welcome; but if you don’t pay me back, every day you don’t pay me back, there is a price you owe me. And this price will increase, and increase before you know it, “when it was the time of god, god has his time, when it was the time of making money, money had its time”. That was their philosophy, and they established themselves their helm in Madina, until the Khous and Khazraj came together.

The Khous and Khazraj, originally Yemeni tribes came together in Madina and became prominent. The Jews were very influential, because they were able to convert many of the children of the Khous and Khazraj to Judaism, many of the children came towards Judaism through the Rabbis who were teaching them about their Holy Book. That time people of Madina started to hear about the message of the Holy Prophet. When they heard the message Holy Prophet, that he has a Revealed book, which teaches the best of principles, that he was being persecuted in Mecca, people of Madina sent a delegation asking the Holy Prophet to come to Madina. “There is a group of us who are ready to look after you, there is the group of us who are ready to defend you”. They said. When the second delegation reached there, The Prophet agreed that he would come. He sent Misa’b Ibn Umair as an ambassador to them . Mishub Ibnu Umair went to Madina and managed to bring the Khous and Khazraj tribes together, then Rasulullah did the hijra on the 13th year of his prophethood at the age of 53. He went to Madina. The Jews there became unhappy now that their authority was diminishing.

Rasulullah entered Madina, the state of Madina, the Khous and Khazraj were all united under him. The Jews saw that their religion was diminishing with the presence of this man and therefore they were unhappy with his movements. The verse “laa ikraha fidheen”was revealed when many of the Khous and Khazraj would come to Rasulullah, and would say “oh Prophet we have become Muslims but our children, can we force our children to become Muslims?” Rasulullah replied with this verse “laa ikraha fidheen” you can’t compel your children to become Muslims. If your children want to stay Jewish, they stay Jewish, if they want to come to Islam, they can come to Islam, but you cannot compel them. The Jews were listening to this, but with no effect. Because they wanted everybody to become Jewish, but Muhammed is making the parents newly converted Muslims.The thing that infuriated them was that Muhammed came towards Madina in all glory, in the most beautiful of transport, but they see this man come looking like a shepherd on a camel. To them a Messiah has to be someone who is glorious, someone who looks like he’s going to be a king. Yet Rasulullah entered Madina in the most humble way. They started asking how you can be a man of god. God should send angels when you came. He said a man of god doesn’t have to have angels with him. There are some men of God who became kings like Dawud and Suleiman. There are other men of god who were mere carpenters, who were mere sincere servants of the community, which made them unhappy. They thought a Messiah is going to be a great one. Instead it turned out to be someone who was so simple.

The economic policies of Rasulullah also made them unhappy. Rasulullah banned interest which was not allowed in the transactions.The Jews were making half of their money out of interest. But Muhammed has stopped economic ways so as to stop their flourishing. Therefore their animosity towards Rasulullah intensified.But Rasulullah responded to them with no animosity rather with respect, because when Rasulullah entered Madina he knew that there were Christians, Muslims and Jews living side by side in Madina. So he made the constitution of Madina. When he wrote, and I ask you to google and search the constitution of Madina ( When he wrote this constitution he said there are Jews living in Madina, there are Christians living in Madina and there are Muslims living in Madina. The Jews can continue to have their synagogues. Christians can continue to have their churches. Muslims will have their mosques. The Jews will have their own legal system. The Christians will have their own legal system. The Muslims have their own legal system. If a Muslim attacks a Jew, he will be punished, If a Jew attacks a Muslim, he will be punished, and a Jew attacks a Christian he will be a punished. If a Muslim and a Jew both attack each other, then the judge is Rasulullah.

This way he wanted to build an environment where he was saying to the Jews of Khous that “you don’t believe that I’m a Messiah because I look simple. I don’t look like the richest man in the world, nor is there a cavalry of angels behind me, I understand; but at least live here on the fact there are more common denominators between our religions and there are differences. In the same way you respect Moses, I respect Moses. You respect David, I respect David,too. You respect Noah, I respect Noah. Let’s live together this way. Yet there are some people- however well you treat them in this world, they just don’t pay any attention. However nicely you treat them, by building an institution or a government where the world is welcome to practice their religion, they go against you.

One of the points in the constitution was that if an outside force attacks Madina everybody should help each other. The Muslims will help Jews and Jews will help Muslims and that nobody in Madina becomes the ally of the outside forces. Internationally, in the world of politics, today there allies, people who make agreements and conventions each other. Thus we will too become allies of one another. If an outside force attacks us we’ll be united, but the worse act in any political treaty in the world is treason. Treason- to go back on the agreement and join those forces which are attacking your country. I think in British legal system today; treason is the only act which can be executed for, all other acts the person may face prison. Likewise Rasulullah said “we; the Muslims, the Christians and Jews who live in Madina should protect each other from any outside forces”.

The first of the three Jewish tribes Banu Kainuka was the first to break this constitution, how? You know you are allowed to practice your religion, all three of them were allowed to practice their religion. Banu Kainuka would come to the ladies in hijab in Madina, and seeing that not many Muslims were there, they would ask the ladies to take off their hijabs, come on take off your hijabs. Some of them took off hijabs, “why follow the religion of Islam?” They pulled the hijabs off their faces and they continued walking. All over, the number of Jewish people in Madina started doing this to the women, they would come and they will pull their scarves, Rasulullah said, we got an agreement over here in the constitution that we are meant to respect each other’s religion, “What’s all this?” They said “we want to live our lives like this and who you are to tell us what we should do”. Here Rasulullah expelled Banu Kainuka from Madina. They built an unhealthy community.

You’ll find some Muslims today in the 21st century. If they see a Jewish person in the street they make fun of him or attack him without any provocation. If he has a problem with somebody in other country, the way they are oppressing others,it is that country’s political issue, a Jewish person living in this country is nothing into you. Why then he does go and attack? Likewise Rasulullah said “If I have done something unwanted to you come up to me, say to me, Muhammed we have a difference of opinion, but for you to go a Muslim women and rip their hijabs, that’s not acceptable, out!” He expelled them, did he killed them? No. He expelled them.

The second tribe, Banu Nadir, what did they do? Abu Sufyan had been trying for 13 years to kill Rasulullah. Every attempt he made to kill Rasulullah failed. Then The prophet went to Madina. It was Abu Sufyan who caused the rumor that Rasulullah  attacked the caravan of Arabs. The battle of Uhd was waged on this rumor. Abu Sufyan sent a messenger saying the caravan of the Arabian has been attacked by Muhammed. When Abu Jahal hears this, he led the army outside to go in the battle of Uhd. The same Abu Sufyan was not at Badr. He left the battle field before they came, he went home. But when Hind saw that her father and that her brother had been killed by Ameerul Mu’mineen Hamza and Rasulullah, Hind said now you have to go and gain revenge. He wanted to go and gain revenge. But he needed the help of an insider in Madina. Who was the insider? Banu Nadir.  In constitution it was said if attacking force come to you, you stand united. They said to Abu Sufyan “we will get to you and tell you what Muhammed’s soldiers are doing. One minute we will talk to Muhammed, the next minute we will talk to your soldiers”. Is that treason or not? It is the biggest sign of treason when you are telling an outsider force positions of Muhammed and his soldiers. They sheltered 200 of the soldiers of Abu Sufyan.

The same Banu Nadir tried to kill Rasulullah on behalf of Abu Sufyan. How? Rasulullah was sitting with his companions. They were discussing what they were supposed to do with Jews in the war. One of Banu Nadir went on top of a mountain, he had the rock. He picked up his rock and he threw it. It was coming down to Rasulullah. The Hadeeth tells us that Gabriel came and asked Rasulullah to move in a minute. Jibreel said “”you are in a state of danger”. When he moved he asked “why I was in a state of danger?”.”Banu Nadir was trying to kill you with the rock, and they are protecting 200 of the soldiers of Abu Sufyan in the battle of Uhd. They are part of the battle of Uhd on the side of Abu Sufyan”. Rasulullah came to Banu Nadir. He asked them if this is the situation. They said “yes”, What did he do to them? He again expelled them. He said- you have to be expelled. Why? Because of the fact that you have acted behind our back. You have told Abu Sufyan what we are doing. We signed the constitution that each and every one of us will protect each other. You have broken the constitution. Out! You go of the Islamic state. Rasulullah is making the decision, He is the one who is saying that in the act of treason, expulsion, not killing is the punishment. Banu Nadir was expelled.

The last Jewish tribe, which acted was the one we are talking about is Banu Quraiza. They noticed that Rasulullah won Badar and Uhd. What is next?. After Badar and Uhd. Khandak. Abu Sufyan mobilized an army of 10,000 soldiers. He had a soldier with him by the name of Amr Ibn Wibdul Amiri. The hobby of Amr Ibn Wibd, was to wrestle with lions, he went looking for lions. I don’t think that many people wrestle with lions as a hobby. This person was known as quiet a ferocious warrior. Abu Sufyan came with Amr Ibn Wibdul Amiri towards Madina. But they encountered a problem. Abu Sufyan said “I can enter Madina from three areas,except the northern side because of two reasons”.1: Salmanul Muhammadi has made the Khandak (trench) 2:.The last Jewish tribe remaining, Banu Quraiza are not helping them. Abu Sufyan said :”I’m trying to get through to them to  help me because if they allow me to enter with my soldiers, I have mobilized the greater army than  what I had at Badar and Uhd”.

At Uhd Abu Sufyan had 3000 soldiers; at Badr Abu Sufyan had approximately a 1000 soldiers. At Khandak, Abu Sufyan took 10000 soldiers. But still he needed the help of Banu Quraiza. One of the members of Banu Nadir, was still alive, the head of their tribe by the name of Huvayyu bnu Akthab-Some ahadiths say Hayyi bnu Akthab. He came to the head of Banu Quraiza, he said: “Listen to me as Banu Kainuka has failed, you people have still got a chance to help Abu Sufyan, to finish Muhammed‘s message. Just help him sort it out and we’ll finish”, But the head of Banu Quraiza said: “I had made an agreement with Muhammed that we will support him”. Huvayy said: “Listen, we want our religion to be at the forehead; the only to realize that is to kill Muhammed. Abu Sufyan has the soldier with the name of Amr Ibn Wibd. There is not a soldier in the army of Muhammad who can match him, it seems that he has forgotten the soldier who killed his in laws in the battle of Uhd”. Then Banu Quraiza man said:“OK I’ll do it. I’ll get you guys to come in from the northern side and then come in and finish Muhammad’s army. Don’t tell me that it was difficult because if you lose this war then I am going to be in spot of bog, I am going to be removed from this place. Because that I have agreed with Muhammad and now I am committing the treason.” He said “don’t worry we will finish it off”.

Little that they know that Ali bin Talib put their way at Khandak that when he came; Abu Sufyan and his army came through the Khandak, Amr Ibn Wibd came forward and he said “oh army of Muhammad bring your warrior to challenge me, which one of you can challenge me” and he said something quite beautiful to the credit of the enemy. He said “why are you scared to challenge me,” You know”, Amirul mumineen  got up and  said  “I want to go”, Rasulullah said “sit down”, second time “sit down”, third time “sit down” Amr bin wibd  started thinking, it looks like none of them are ready to challenge me and then he said “why are you scared to challenge me, If you kill me you’ll go to the heaven Muhammad promises you and if you don’t kill me then at the end, you still go that heaven because you‘ll die as a martyr, so why are you scared?” Then the young man walked out by the name of Amirul Mumineen. When the Amirul Mumineen walked out from the day of Khandak-Khandak was in the sixth year after hijra-which means Ali bin Abu Talib was 28 years old on the day of Khandak. Some 28 years old is a lot to be a desired. But Ali Ibn Abi Talib set an example for you at the age of 28, of a warrior. When he came out Amr bin wibd asked “who is this young man who has come to fight me?   I’m the one who wrestles the lion. What is your name?”  He said “my name is Ali, the son of Abu Talib.” Then he said “I won’t kill”, he asked “why?” He said “Because your father was a good friend of mine. I won’t kill you”. He said “But I’ll kill you because you are the enemy of Allah, Ali ibn Abi Talib doesn’t joke when he comes to the battle field. He wants to finish the situation off quickly”. When they came and encountered each other,there came that famous moment when Amirul Mumineen walks away  then he comes  back in. “what happened?” companion asked Ali. He said “Amr Ibn Wibd was on the ground, as I was about to strike him he spat at me, I walked away because I never strike a person who angers me, I’ll only strike someone who angers Allah” and he walked away. Then he said “I finished him” the narration continues to say that Resulullah on that day said that the strike of Ali in Khandak is greater than the worship of all of the creation until the Day of Judgment. Rasulullah said that the whole of eeman fight the whole of kuffar. Ameerul Mumineen was a big tree, but now there was a problem.

Banu Quraiza clearly had given Abu Sufyan the chance to fight at Khandak. Resulullah called the heads of Banu Quraiza, he said to them: “You went behind our back, we have a constitutional agreement that Jewish people and Muslims will live in a peace, you go behind our back and you support Abu Sufyan”. They said “yes we did”. He said “Therefore I’m going to make the decision that what should happen to you”. Because of the fact that they have committed the treason, they thought that Rasulullah is definitely going to finish them because of the fact that the major war has insinuated. He said “I’m going to make the decision”. They said “No”. “Why”? “Because we don’t want you to make the decision, we want Sa’d Bin Muaad to make decision”. They said this because Sa’d Bin Muaad originally was from the tribe of  Khous. Originally the tribe of Khous was the allies of Banu Quraiza. They thought Sa’ad who used to be an ally before, is going to be more lenient than Rasulullah. Because Sa’ad was the head of the tribe, he had the ability to make decision in government. They said “Muhammed you are not gonna make our decision”. Because they thought Muhammad was gonna expel. So what happened?. Sa’ad had just been wounded in the battle so he was not in good mood. Sa’ad looked at them and asked “You want me to make the decision?” They said “yes”. “The heads of your tribe will all be executed, the women would not be, they are to be set free. Or they are to be taken as servants or slaves. The children are to be set free and those of your tribe, who have nothing to do with the negotiations with Abu Sufyan, are to be set free as well”.He says those of you who went and discussed with Abu Sufyan behind our back, will be executed.

Then comes this number, 960. Banu Quraiza were 960 Jews. But not all of them were killed. Only a few of them who were the main protagonists were killed. The rest of them were set free or were taken and ransomed slaves. Then the question arised is, “why do we have in Islamic books the narrations that Banu Quraiza were all massacred?” like if you go to the seera of Ibn Ishaq, you can see he had five pages dedicated to the idea that 960 Jews were massacred.

How do we analysis this?. Firstly Ibn Ishaq was seen by the greatest scholars of Islam as being an imposter when he discussed Jewish history. Malik bin Anas used to say that Ibn Ishaq is not reliable because he is the historian not a traditionalist. This means, he does not scrutinize his narrations with the chain of narration properly. Every narration has a chain. Ibn Ishaq doesn’t have the chains of narration. And even in his chain of the narration about the incidents of Banu Quraiza, he lists the narrators as the descendants of Banu Quraiza. If I’m one of descendants  I’m gonna try to make the scene look more glorious. He says there are two descendants of Banu Quraiza in his chain. Therefore Malik wouldn’t take tradition from him. Ibn Hajar used to say: “You cannot take from Ibn Ishaq any narration from the Jews”.He said this because Ibn Ishaq would have glorified the Jewish history to gain more knowledge from the people of Madina who were Jewish.

Tabari doesn’t mention this narration. Ibn Kutaif doesn’t mention this narration. Waqidi doesn’t mention this narration. And the narration goes to show you that the narration in itself that 960 Jews being executed is the weak one.

ولا تزر وازرة وزر أخري.. .   You can’t put a soul a burden, on someone’s soul who didn’t commit the crime. If 960 Jewish people exist but only three of them did this with Abu Sufyan, the others have nothing to do with it. Should we massacre all of them? Quran says “no”. You can’t burden the soul of one person with the actions of another person. It’s contradictory that rasullah would allow such a thing when the Quran goes against such a thing. We find that the later Islamic scholars do not use this particular incident as precedent for their laws.  There is a book called  “kithabil amval” (كتابالأموال), كتاب الأموال  is a book of fiqh. In this book there is the discussion about the opinions of Imam Al Awazai, Imam Al Awazai is one of the famous Jurisprudents in Islamic history. with in this book there is a narration that “in Lebanon, when Abdullah Bin Ali, used to be the governor, there was a group of people who went against his decisions every time. He decided to condemn all this group of people and to expel all of them. Imam Awazai disagreed the opinion. He said: “According to Islamic history, if a group of people gone against you, who have committed treason, you don’t expel all of them, you only expel the heads of the group. The rest of them you do not expel”. He said this on the basis of the action of Rasulullah with Banu Quraiza (بنو قريضة) that Rasulullah and Sa’d Bin Muaad, said only the heads have committed treason, the rest of them have done nothing wrong. Therefore it’s unacceptable for us to expel the whole group of people.

Also, very importantly, in Jewish history, there is a story exactly the same as that of Banu Quraiza. I am of the opinion, and the other historians are of the opinion that they took the story, and put it into the Islamic narration.The story is that before Alexander arrived in the great historical Jerusalem, there was an incident: He decided to massacre 960 Jews. Notice how the number 960 repeats itself. That is why the Ulama of Hadith say there are Israeliyyat; it means the narrations from the children of Israel which found themselves in Muslim narrations. There was an incident of 960 Jews who were originally massacred, suddenly that incident founded itself in Muslim narrations, exactly the same incident and that’s why in 1973 in the congress Jewish study, there was the study of how incident of Banu Quraiza relates exactly to the incident of Alexander with the Jews. That there was the Jewish scholar who came forward and said that there was no such thing as 960 people dying. All it was that they took that story and they started putting it into the life of Rasulullah.

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