The Sword of Allah - Khalid Bin Waleed (Ral)

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Chapter 15: The End of Malik bin Nuwaira

 Part II: The Campaign of the Apostasy


Page: 4

Khalid came out of the house of the Caliph. His step was light and his manner carefree as he walked to the mosque where Umar sat conversing with some friends. This time Khalid was surer of his position and could afford to repay the compliment. He called to Umar, "Come to me, O left-handed one!" 1 Umar guessed that the Caliph had acquitted Khalid. He stood up and without a word marched off to his house.

This matter of Malik and Laila has been the subject of much dispute in Muslim history. Some, quoting sources like Abu Qatadah, have said that the household of Malik had called the Adhan and that Malik had returned to the faith before he was taken captive. Others have said that Khalid never ordered the killing of Malik, that the weather was chilly and Khalid had said, "Warm your prisoners", that in certain dialects the same word is used to denote 'warming', and 'killing', thus Dhiraar misunderstood Khalid's order and went and killed Malik.

These versions of the story are, in all probability, not true. They have been offered by factions-one to explain away Umar's hostility towards Khalid and the other to clear Khalid of the possible guilt of murdering a Muslim.

There is no doubt about the apostasy and sedition of Malik bin Nuwaira, his distribution of the tax money, his pact with Sajjah, and the participation of his warriors, on his orders, in the depredations of Sajjah. All historians have, without exception, reported these incidents as facts. There is also no doubt, in the mind of this writer that Khalid ordered the killing of Malik and did so with the honest and sincere conviction that Malik was an apostate and a traitor. But suspicion continued to lurk in the minds of some Arabs, certainly in the mind of Umar, that this was a crime de passion. Umar was further encouraged in this belief by the brother of Malik, who came to see him and told him what a wonderful man Malik was and how tragic it was that he had fallen a victim to Khalid's lust!

The long and short of the whole affair was that Malik was killed and the beautiful Laila with the gorgeous eyes and the lovely legs became the wife of Khalid bin Al Waleed. He would one day pay a very high price for the pleasure!

1. Tabari: Vol. 2, p. 504.