The Sword of Allah - Khalid Bin Waleed (Ral)

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Chapter 18: The Clash with Persia

 Part III: The Invasion of Iraq


Page: 5

The young man arrived in the presence of the Caliph, armed and equipped for travel. The Caliph ordered him to proceed forthwith to Yamamah as a reinforcement to the army of Khalid. The Companions stared in amazement at the Caliph. "Are you reinforcing one whose army has left him, with one man?" they asked. 1

Abu Bakr looked for a moment at Qaqa. Then he said, "No army can be defeated if its ranks possess the likes of this man." 2 And Qaqa bin Amr rode away to reinforce the army of Khalid!

But this was not the only action that Abu Bakr took to build up Khalid's forces. He also wrote to Muthanna and Mazhur bin Adi (an important chief in North-Eastern Arabia), instructing them to muster their warriors and consider themselves and their men under the command of Khalid for the invasion of Iraq.

Having issued these instructions, Abu Bakr sat back and relaxed. He had given Khalid his mission to invade Iraq and fight the Persians; he had laid down a starting-point for the campaign, the region of Uballa; he had given Khalid his objective - Hira; and he had placed under Khalid's command whatever force he could muster. There was nothing else that he could do. It was up to Khalid to accomplish his mission. And Khalid, now in the forty-eighth year of his life, set about the conquest of Iraq. 3

1. Tabari: Vol. 2, pp. 553-4.
2. Ibid.
3. There are two main versions of campaign of Iraq: the first of Ibn Ishaq and Waqidi, the second of Saif bin Umar. Tabari favours the latter version, and this is the one here used in the account of Khalid's invasion of Iraq. In this also there are two versions of Abu Bakr's plan for the invasion. For an explanation, see Note 4 in Appendix B.