The Prophet as a Military Leader & His 10 Principles for Success


The Prophet Muhammad was a great general and strategist as well as the leader of a new religious movement who in a single decade fought many battles, led raids, and planned military operations.

 

List of expeditions in which The Prophet (PBUH) took part (28) expeditions which Muhammad did not take part (73) are as follows (Have included wikipedia links within the list below for further research):

Name of Battle: Date (AD/CE): (AH)
Expedition of Hamza ibn ‘Abdul-Muttalib March 623 1
Expedition of Ubaydah ibn al-Harith April 623 1
al-Kharrar expedition May 623 1
Patrol of Waddan (al-Abwa) August 623 1
Patrol of Buwat September 623 2
First Expedition to Badr (Safwan) September 623 2
Patrol of Zul Al-Ushairah December 623 2
Nakhla Raid January 624 2
Battle of Badr 15 March 624 2
Killing of Asma bint Marwan March 624 2
Killing of Abu Afak March 624 2
Invasion of Banu Qaynuqa April 624 2
Invasion of Sawiq May/June 624 2
Al Kudr Invasion May 624 3
Killing of Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf August/September 624 3
Dhu Amarr raid September 624 3
Invasion of Buhran October/November 624 3
Al-Qarada raid November 624 3
Battle of Uhud 23 March 625 3
Battle of Hamra al-Asad March 625 3
Expedition of Qatan June 625 4
Expedition of Abdullah Ibn Unais June 625 4
Expedition of Al Raji July 625 4
Expedition of Bir Maona July 625 4
Invasion of Banu Nadir August 625 4
Expedition of Badr al-Maw’id April 626 4
Expedition of Dhat al-Riqa June 626 5
Expedition of Dumat al-Jandal August/September 626 5
Expedition of al-Muraysi’ January 627 5
Battle of the Trench April 627 5
Invasion of Banu Qurayza May 627 5
Expedition of Muhammad ibn Maslamah June 627 6
Invasion of Banu Lahyan July 627 6
Expedition of Dhu Qarad August 627 6
Expedition of Ukasha bin Al-Mihsan August/September 627 6
First Raid on Banu Thalabah August/September 627 6
Second Raid on Banu Thalabah August/September 627 6
Expedition of Zaid ibn Haritha (Al-Jumum) September 627 6
Expedition of Zaid ibn Haritha (Al-Is) September/October 627 6
Third Raid on Banu Thalabah October/November 627 6
Expedition of Zaid ibn Haritha (Hisma) October/November 627 6
Expedition of Zaid ibn Haritha (Wadi al-Qura) November/December 627 6
Expedition of Abdur Rahman bin Auf December 627/January 628 6
Expedition of Fidak December 627/January 628 6
Second Expedition of Wadi al-Qura 628 6
Expedition of Kurz bin Jabir Al-Fihri January/February 628 6
Expedition of Abdullah ibn Rawaha February/March 628 6
Treaty of Hudaybiyyah March 628 6
Conquest of Fidak May 628 7
Battle of Khaybar May/June 628 7
Third Expedition of Wadi al Qura May 628 7
Expedition of Umar ibn al-Khatab December 628 7
Expedition of Abu Bakr As-Siddiq December 628 7
Expedition of Bashir Ibn Sa’d al-Ansari (Fadak) December 628 7
Expedition of Ghalib ibn Abdullah al-Laithi (Mayfah) January 629 7
Expedition of Bashir Ibn Sa’d al-Ansari (Yemen) February 629 7
Expedition of Ibn Abi Al-Awja Al-Sulami April 629 7
Expedition of Ghalib ibn Abdullah al-Laithi (Fadak) May 629 7
Expedition of Ghalib ibn Abdullah al-Laithi (Al-Kadid) June 629 8
Expedition of Shuja ibn Wahb al-Asadi June 629 8
Expedition of Ka’b ibn ‘Umair al-Ghifari July 629 8
Battle of Mu’tah September 629 8
Expedition of Amr ibn al-As October 629 8
Expedition of Abu Ubaidah ibn al Jarrah October 629 8
Expedition of Abi Hadrad al-Aslami January 629 8
Expedition of Abu Qatadah ibn Rab’i al-Ansari (Khadirah) December 629 8
Expedition of Abu Qatadah ibn Rab’i al-Ansari (Batn Edam) December 629 8
Conquest of Mecca January 630 8
Expedition of Khalid ibn al-Walid (Nakhla) January 630 8
Raid of Amr ibn al-As January 630 8
Raid of Sa’d ibn Zaid al-Ashhali January 630 8
Expedition of Khalid ibn al-Walid (Banu Jadhimah) January 630 8
Battle of Hunayn January 630 8
Expedition of At-Tufail ibn ‘Amr Ad-Dausi January 630 8
Battle of Autas 630 8
Expedition of Abu Amir Al-Ashari January 630 8
Expedition of Abu Musa Al-Ashari January 630 8
Siege of Ta’if February 630 8
Expedition of Uyainah bin Hisn April/May 630 9
Expedition of Qutbah ibn Amir May/June 630 9
Expedition of Dahhak al-Kilabi June/July 630 9
Expedition of Alqammah bin Mujazziz July/August 630 9
Expedition of Ali ibn Abi Talib (Al-Fuls) July/August 630 9
Expedition of Ukasha bin Al-Mihsan (Udhrah and Baliy) 630 9
Battle of Tabouk October/December 630 9
Expedition of Khalid ibn al-Walid (Dumatul Jandal) October 630 9
Expedition of Abu Sufyan ibn Harb 630 9
Demolition of Masjid al-Dirar 630 9
Expedition of Khalid ibn al-Walid (2nd Dumatul Jandal) April 631 9
Expedition of Surad ibn Abdullah April 631 9
Expedition of Khalid ibn al-Walid (Najran) June/July 631 10
Expedition of Ali ibn Abi Talib (Mudhij) December 631 10
Expedition of Ali ibn Abi Talib (Hamdan) 632 10
Demolition of Dhul Khalasa April 632 10
Expedition of Usama bin Zayd May 632 10

The Prophet Muhammad was a revolutionary who introduced military innovations that transformed the Arab armies and warfare throughout the then Arab world.

Yes he was a great and final prophet is undeniable; but what mattered more was he was a great warrior and military leader who was answerable to non but Allah and his focus on his mission and the way he systematically carried that out is admirable even for those who opposed the Prophet then or now.

Those who attack and insult the Prophet need to look at the environment in which Prophet lived and the people around him, the religion of Islam inspired the masses to focus and better their lives and military achievements where part and parcel of living in those times.

For example as a military leader the Prophet changed the social composition of Arab armies of the time by replacing traditional ways of fighting with a new command structure.

This transformation of Arab warfare enabled those leaders who came after the Prophet to establish the core of what then became the Islamic empire which in turn led to the Enlightenment within the then Muslim world.

This is an accomplishment that would have been militarily impossible without Prophets teachings and innovations.

As Muslims we should not shy away from accepting The Last Prophet PBUH as a Military Genius and Strategist who cared not for himself so much as he cared for the ones who will come after him.

Here is a clip from the movie The Message and gives a brief glimpse of how the Muslim armies entered Mecca:

 

When it came to strategies or principles that he seems to have used we can see at least ten:

 

1st Principle:

To begin from the possible

Aisha, She said: “Whenever the Prophet had to choose between two options, he always opted for the easier choice” (Al-Bukhari)

 

2nd Principle:

To see advantage in disadvantage

The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) guided by the Qur’an (94: 5-6), saw opportunities in every problem.

 

3rd Principle:

To change the place of action

He migrated to find more suitable place to fulfill his mission, that was to deliver the message of Islam.

 

4th Principle:

To make a friend out of an enemy (Qur’an 41:34)

The life of the Prophet is an historical testimony of this. He returned bad deeds by doing good and that had a conquering effect over his enemies.

 

5th Principle:

To turn minus into plus

A British orientalist remarked “He faced adversity with the determination to writing success out of failure”.

 

6th Principle:

The power of peace is stronger than the power of violence

He ordered his direst opponents to go free after the conquest of Mecca. That resulted in them to willingly and immediately accept Islam.

 

7th Principle:

Not to be a dichotomous thinker

He always looked for a third option instead of focusing on 2 only.

 

8th Principle:

To bring the battle in one’s own favorable field

He refused to engage in battles if he can sign treaties that can allow the confrontation of ideas instead of fighting. He knew Islam will prevail in those cases.

 

9th Principle:

Gradualism instead of radicalism

He implemented social changes gradually rather than radically attacking all aspects at once.

 

10th Principle:

To be pragmatic in controversial matters

He was willing to compromise in order to reach agreement as long as that does not affect the Islamic faith. This is an ongoing personal  project for me to understand this great man and learn from him in a way that is unemotional and detached – but its difficult as the more I learn the more I am in awe.

 

 

Other lessons we can learn from The Prophet are: 

1. Seek Wisdom, Be Forgiving & Sincere in word and action.
2. Be Humble, Wins the hearts of your enemies and make them friends.
3. Be selfless.
4. Fight for your Rights and once done fight for others.
5. Trust in the Allah, Regardless of your situation.
6. Don’t Live in the past.
7. Strive again even if you fail a hundred times, keep moving.
8. World is not fair, Be strong and steady in navigating it.
9. Truth frees you and lies traps you.
10. Everyone and everything passes, do not attach yourself to things.
11. Learn from everyone and everything.
12. Life is not about resting its about leaving something for the ones who will come after you.
13. Honour your mother and father.
14. Be just – even if its against yourself.
15. Trust in Allah but work as if no one will help you.

These were just few lessons from the Life of Prophet Muhammad
Hope you find it useful and feel free to comment and suggest ideas/books/seminars which you think I can learn from and or share with others.

 

 

 

 

http://www.linkedIn.com/MohammedAbbasi

Mohammed Abbasi

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