They often were a source of considerable danger to the new-born Ummah and required unceasing watchfulness on the part of the Prophet. Towards them he always showed the greatest patience and forbearance, hoping in the end to win them over to the faith, which expectations were fully justified by the result. With the death of Abdullah Ibn Obay, his party which were known as the party of the ‘Munafiquin’ [the hypocrites] disappeared.
The Jews who constituted the third party of the Medinites were however, the most serious element of danger. No kindness or generous treatment, on the part of the Prophet, would seem to satisfy them. They soon broke off, and ranged themselves with the enemies of the new faith. They did not hesitate to declare openly, that they preferred idolatry, with its attendant evils, to the faith of Islam. Thus, the Prophet had to keep an eye on his enemies outside Al-Madienah, on the one hand, and those within the city on the other. The Makkahns, who had sworn Muhammad’s death, were well acquainted, thanks to the party of the hypocrites and of the Jews at Al-Madienah, with the real forces of Muslims. They also knew that the Jews had accepted Muhammad’s alliance only from motives of temporary expediency, and that they would break away from him to join the idolaters, as soon as the latter showed themselves in the surrounding area of Al-Madienah. The safety of the State required the proscription of the traitors who were executed for high treason of this nature.
Towards the second year of the “Hijrah,” the infidels of Makkah began a series of hostile acts against the Muslims of Al-Madienah. They sent men in parties, to execute raids on the fruit–trees of the Muslims of Al-Madienah and to carry away their flocks. Now came the moment of severest trial to Islam. It became the duty of the Prophet, to take serious measures to guard against any plot rising from within or a sudden attack from without. He put Al-Madienah in a state of military discipline. He had to send frequent reconnoitring parties, to guard against any sudden attack. No sooner did the Prophet organise his state, than a large well–equipped army of the Makkahns was a-field. A force consisting of one thousand men, marched under Abu Gahl, a great enemy of Islam, towards Al-Madienah, to attack the city. The Muslims received timely notice of their enemies’ intention. A body of three hundred adherents, of whom two thirds were citizens of Al-Madienah, were gathered, to forestall the idolaters from occupying the Valley of Badr, situated near the sea between Makkah and Al-Madienah. When the Prophet saw the army of the infidels approaching the valley, he prayed that the little band of Muslims might not be destroyed.
The army of the Makkahns advanced into the open space, which separated the Muslims from the idolaters. According to Arab usage, the battle was begun by single combats. The engagement then became general. The battle result was that Makkahns were driven back with great loss. Several of their chiefs were slain; and Abu Gahl fell victim. A large number of idolaters remained prisoners in the hands of the Muslims. They were, contrary to all usage and traditions of the Arabs, treated with the greatest humanity. The Prophet gave strict orders, that sympathy should be shown them in their misfortune, and that they should be treated with kindness. These instructions were faithfully obeyed by the Muslims, to whose care the prisoners were confided. Dealing with this event, Sir William Muir quotes one of the prisoners saying: “Blessing be on the men of Al-Madienah: they made us ride, while they themselves walked; they gave us wheaten bread to eat, when here was little of it, contenting themselves with dates.
The remarkable circumstances, which led to the victory of Badr, and the results, which followed it, made a deep impression on the minds of the Muslims. They firmly believed that the angels of heaven had battled on their side against their enemies. The division of the spoils created some disagreement between the Muslim warriors. For the moment, the Prophet divided it equally amongst all. Subsequently, a Qu’ran revelation laid down a rule for future division of the spoils. According to this rule, a fifth was reserved for the public treasury for the support of the poor and needy; and the distribution of the remaining four fifths was left to the judgment of the Chief of the State.
The next battle between the Quraishites and the Muslims was the battle of Ohod, a hill about four miles to the north of Al-Madienah. The idolaters, to revenge their loss at Badr, made tremendous preparations, for a new attack upon the Muslims. The next year, they collected an army 3000 strong, of whom 700 were armed with coats of mail, and 200 horses. These forces advanced under the command of Abu Sofian, and encamped at a village, six miles from Al-Madienah, where they gave themselves up to spoiling the fields and flocks of the Medinites. The Prophet being much inferior to his enemies in number, at first determined to keep himself within the town and receive them there; but afterwards, the advice of some of his companions prevailing, he marched out against them, at the head of 1000 men, of whom 100 were armed with coats of mail: but he had no more than one horse, besides his own, in his whole army. With these forces he halted at Mount Ohod. He was soon abandoned by Abdullah Ibn Obay, the leader of the hypocrites, with 300 of his followers. Thus, the small force of the Prophet was reduced to 700. At Mount Ohod the Muslim troops passed the night, and in the morning, after offering their prayers, they advanced into the plain. The Prophet planned to have the hill at his back, and the better to secure his men from being surrounded; he placed fifty archers on the height in the rear, behind the troops and gave them strict orders, not to leave their posts whatever might happen. When they came to engage, the Prophet had superiority at first, but afterward, through the fault of his archers, who left their position for the sake of plunder, and suffered the enemies’ horsemen to surround the Muslims and to attack them in the rear; he lost the day, and was very near losing his life. He was struck down by a shower of stones, and wounded in the face by two arrows, and one of his front teeth was broken. Of the Muslims 70 men were killed, among whom was Hamza the Prophet’s uncle; of the infidels 22 men were lost.
Obay, a man with some claims to distinction. They apparently joined Islam, but in secret were disaffected.
 Al Wakidi, Ibn Hisham, Ibn Athir, etc.
 Sir William. Muir: The Life of Mohamed
 Ibn Hisham
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