The Great Commander and Ultimate Warrior
Khalid Bin Waleed “Saifullah”
A strong and sturdy physique, tall stature, broad shoulders, dignified bearing and eagle-eyed with a brilliant intellect, noble thoughts and firm determination this was the grand personality of Khalid bin Waleed, one of the greatest warriors and commanders of Islamic army. He was the ideal man uniting personality both physical and intellectual beauty. He was the personification of nobility and majesty, and an enviable example of all the best qualities. An unparalleled rider, an expert swordsman and equally adept with the spear or any other weapon, he was noted for his courage and his foresight in planning.
He is recognized in the world's military history as one of the greatest generals of all time. Triumphs and victories used to kiss his feet and even his worst enemies acknowledged his military expertise.
That the greatness and majesty of Caesar was laid low in the dust by him is doubtless a miracle caused by the ingenuity and well planned tactics used by him in leading his men. The eyes of the world saw that the mighty resources of Rome and Persia were never deterrents for him. From the beginning to the end in every conflict between Good and Evil, he remained victorious and with the help of Allah Almighty's blessings he never faced defeat. The boundaries of Syria is a city called Moatah. The confrontation, which took place here, is called the War of Moatah. This is the first war in which Khalid bin Waleed took part as an ordinary soldier after his conversion to Islam. But after three generals were martyred, one after another, the mantle of leadership fell on him. There were only three thousand Mujahedeen and they were totally spent and exhausted. The enemy, on the other hand, numbered one hundred thousand fierce warriors, who were very well equipped and armed.
The war started due to the following incident The Prophet sent one of his most faithful Companions, Haris bin 'Amr Azdi , with a letter for the ruler of Basra, Haris bin Ami Shamar Ghassani. He had barely reached Moatah, a town in the province of Balqa, on the borders of Syria, when the Governor of the province, Sharjeel bin ‘Amr Ghssani, came to hear of his arrival. He immediately had him arrested and killed brutally. When this terrible news reached the Prophet, he was very grieved and upset. Another incident took place around the same time. A missionary group of fifteen of the Prophet's Companions was in Syria engrossed in carrying the Message of Islam and enjoining its teachings. All these Companions were in a place called 'Zat AlAtlah', when they were treacherously murdered. Then again, around the same time the ruler of Rome had threatened to invade Al Madinah. These were the main reasons why the Prophet $3 sent an army under General Zaid bin Harithah. He had instructed that in case Zaid bin Harithah, was martyred during the war, his place should be taken by Ja'far bin Abi Talib If he too was martyred hen 'Abdullah bin Rawah a should take over the command the forces. If he too should be martyred then the Mujahedeen should decide on who should be their Commander. He had a white flag made for the army and entrusted it to General Zaid bin Harithah . He commanded the army to camp at the spot where Haris bin 'Amr Azdi , had been martyred, ask Allah Almighty for help and stand firm to battle against the enemy. He further instructed them not to break their word and not to perpetrate any breach of trust. They were ordered not to kill old people, women or children. Nor should they kill any recluse or monk who had abandoned the world to pray or meditate. No buildings were to be razed to the ground, nor trees to be felled or destroyed. After receiving their orders from their Commander in Chief, the Prophet, the army set out on their extremely difficult mission. After crossing very difficult territory they finally reached the Syrian border and entered the province of Balqa’. Here they got the news that the Roman emperor Harqul had sent a huge army to fight these and full of Muslim soldiers, and they were already encamped in the field. So the Mujahedeen turned direction and marched towards Moatah. At this place the two armies confronted each other and heavy fighting broke out. The Muslims fought fearlessly and 2aidi bin Harithah the general, realizing his responsibilities as the Commander attacked the enemy. In order to boost the morale of lus handful of men, he fought with the vigor and zest of four men. There was destruction, perdition and panic all round, as he advanced plunging through the ranks of the enemy, and finally achieved martyrdom. Now Ja'far bin Abu Talib took command and holding the flag in his hand led the Muslim army. He too rode fearlessly, trying to break through the ranks of the enemy.
Since the enemy's army was huge and the fighting was intense, it was difficult to ride through them, so he jumped off his steed and rushing through their ranks started to rip off the heads of the enemy with his sword. Finally, one of the enemy soldiers managed to land a powerful blow and cut off his right hand. He took the flag in his left hand and the enemy cut off the left hand as well. He still did not allow the flag to fall down and continued to hold it with the help of his legs and what was left of his arms. The enemy struck a final and fatal blow, and Ja’far; attained the exalted status of a martyr. According to the instructions of the Prophet, 'Abdullah bin Rawahanow took over the responsibility of General. Moving forward he took the flag, and finally he too after displaying marvelous deeds of heroism reached martyrdom, and the Glorious Presence of Allah Almighty.
The morale of the Mujahedeen was now at its lowest; they had lost three Generals, and even their flag had fallen to the ground. Considering the disproportionate numbers of the huge Roman army and the small Muslim force, defeat seemed certain. The white flag of the Muslim army had almost fallen into the hands of the enemy, when Thabit bin Aqram with a dexterous move took up the flag. He then turned to Khalid bin Waleed and addressed him thus:
"Please take this flag into your hands; at this most difficult of times only you can perform the duty of a leader best."
Khalid bin Waleed in very civil and humble tones declined the honour, saying Thabit was superior to him; having taken part in the battle of Badar he had the right to be the leader of the Mujahedeen, he said. But Thabit bin Aqram was adamant and swearing by Allah
Almighty he said it was a proved fact that with his deeds of valor, Khalid bin Waleed had shown his mettle. He said he had picked up the flag from the ground only to hand it over to you. He again requested him to hold it up and tackle the critical situation with his wise and strategic planning. The Mujahedeenneeded his military skill, daring and brave leadership. He said the army needed him at this crucial juncture to perform the important duties of leadership andnonplus and confound the enemy so that the Muslim forces could get some breathing space. Then turning to theMujahedeen asked them if they were would like to accept Kh2lid bin Waleed, as their leader.
They all, answered that they would be happy to have as their Commander him. Realizing that he was the choice of the Mujahedeen
Khalid bin Waleed picked up the flag, accepting the position of General. And he fought so fiercely and firmly that nine swords were broken in his hands and the enemy was thwarted. Compared to the enemy the Mujahedeen were very few in number. Bringing experience and masterly strategy into play, Khalid bin Waleed changed the whole formation of the army. He picked out agroup of the Mujahedeen to remain at the back in hiding, and then suddenly appear and join the rest of the army. As a result the whole atmosphere was filled with dust and sand as they moved forward.
The Roman army panicked when they saw this and thought that reinforcements had arrived. Their morale started to live down and taking advantage of this opportunity. Khalid bin Waleed started to move out the Mujahedeen very carefully out of the circle of the surrounding enemy, and into a safe area. Earlier the Romans had been very confident that they would decimate the Muslims, and not even one of them would be allowed to leave the battlefield alive. Their confidence was very high because in the recent past they had defeatedthe Persians; they were intoxicated by their victory and thought a handful of the Mujahedeen would be no match for them. Khalid bin Waleed with his God given skill in planning had put into practice intelligent tactics to defeat the enemy. With the every first day they were shattered when they saw him break nine swords. And when he saw 011 the second day that the Romans were frightened, panickingand ready to retreat he took advantage of the opportunity to take his men back to safety. To bring back the army intact under such precious and critical circumstances was no mean feat andunforgettable in the annals of military history.