Did the Prophet Mohammed kill a Jewish Poet?

Did the prophet Mohammed kill a Jewish Poet?

An EDL member claimed in a post that the Prophet Mohammed killed many people unjustly and was a murderer and warlord.

One of the incidents he quoted to justify his claim was that the prophet (s) ordered the killing of a Jewish poet, so his companions carried this out.

I gave some foundations in a post which all of a sudden disappeared soon after I posted it and the thread closed down – typical of that forum! (EDL forum that is). It was so disappointing especially when I wrote extensively about why and how fabricated ahadeeth (sayings and actions of the prophet) appeared in the early and later part of Islam and what the scholars of Islam did and are doing to expose them and confine them.

However the foundations I mentioned spoke mainly about the authenticity and science of hadeeth. It also related reasons why orientalists made up lies about Islam and how Allah (God) promised he would preserve the truth (Islam). The way he preserved it was through bringing forth scholars who specialised in checking the authenticity of ahadeeth, and incidents attributed to the Prophet Mohammed.

The EDL member then said:
“Ok, according to Bukhari, Muhammed ordered the death of Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf, what level of authenticity do you regard Bukhari as?”

I said: Indeed the level of Bukhari is authentic and its ahadeth are acceptable, and we do indeed find part of the incident of the poet being assassinated (Kaáb ibn Ashraf) in Bukhari. However it is only part of the complete incident. To arrive at a complete picture of the incident we need to examine other sources as well to see the truth of the incident and why he was killed.

So when we look further a field we find according to Montgomery and Watt (orientalists) that he (Kaáb ibn Ashraf) plotted with the Quraish to kill the Prophet Mohammed. This would not have been a problem had Kaab been at war with the him but remember he was a Jew in Madina and bound by a treaty with the Muslims. After the Quraish suffered a defeat at the battle of Badr he became treacherous to his oath and agreement and went to Mecca to incite the Quraish and plot to kill Mohammed. Thus according to the customs of the society at that time (Jews, Christians, Muslims and Pagans) one who breaks his oath or treaty with an aim to kill others is to be killed. So that is why we found no objection to his killing by the remaining Jews in Madinah, they were shocked and fearful after the incident.

Uri Rubin also quotes from early sources claiming that Zamakshari, al-Tabarsi, al-Razi and al-Baydaw all agreed with the above and added that Mohammed was informed by Gabriel that Ka ‘b had signed an agreement with the Quraish to kill the Prophet Mohammed.

As for his (Kaáb ibn Ashraf) insulting poetry against the Prophet Mohammed, this crime was secondary to his plotting to kill Mohammed. Ka áb use to write and openly speak his evil poetry in Madinah about the Prophet where the Prophet was residing with his companions, yet the prophet did not kill or ordered his killing there. He could have easily killed him then if that was the reason for killing him. But no Ka ab was killed in Mekka when he went to plot the killing of Mohammed and incite another war between the Quraish and the Muslims. He was assassinated by the Prophets companions in Mekka.

So the situation was not as you claim; that Mohammed killed a poet for making up poetry insulting him.

You have a better, clearer picture of the incident. I am sure no one would disagree that to kill someone who is plotting to kill you, and also inciting another war is a wise and praiseworthy decision.

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