Re-Examining Banu Qurayzah Incident
2. Jewish tribes Made a Pact with Muslims
3. Events that Occurred Before Quraiza Incident
4. Prophet Muhammed Thwarted Their Plans
5. Banu Qurayza Siding, Waging War and Supplying Enemies with Weapons
6. Banu Qurayza were Left to Face the Music Alone
7. Who were Killed?
8. Were Children Killed?
9. Were All the Banu Qurayza Men Killed?
10. How Many Men of the Quraiza were Killed?
11. Anti-Semitism Claim
The aim of this article is to examine an episode in the life time of Prophet Muhammed (p), concerning the Banu Qurayza warrior-men being killed. In this piece, we will respond to claims orientalists and other critics have made regarding this incident of the Arab Jewish tribe, Banu Qurayza.
For many reasons, it is obvious that this episode of the Banu Qurayza incident has had a lot of attention from non-Muslim scholars and apologists. But, we find a lot of their conclusions about it has either been lacking substance in showing the true picture of the event or deliberately misconstrued this historical event in showing Prophet Muhammed (p) in a bad light for allowing Sa’d ibn Mu’adh (a former Jew) to judge those that committed treachery.
2. Jewish tribes made a Pact with Muslims
The Muslims, fleeing persecution from Makkah, found Medina (Yathrib) a safe sanctuary to live in. Shortly after the persecuted Muslims arrived and welcomed in Medina. They made a pact with the Jewish tribe Banu Quraiza (and other tribes) that so it happens if an enemy were to attack Madinah, they would all protect each other and will not aid the enemy in any way. These facts are related to us in a number of early sources:
“… To the Jew who follows us belongs help and equality. He shall not be wronged nor shall his enemies be aided. The peace of the believers is invisible … The Jews shall contribute to the cost of war so long as they are fighting alongside the believers… The Jews must bear their expenses and the Muslims their expenses. Each must help the other against anyone who attacks the people of this document.
They must seek mutual advice and consultation, and loyalty is a protection against treachery. A man is not liable for his ally’s misdeeds. The wronged must be helped. The Jews must pay with the believers so long as war lasts. Yathrib shall be a sanctuary for the people of this document. …. Quraysh and their helpers shall not be given protection.
The contracting parties are bound to help one another against any attack on Yathrib. If they are called to make peace and maintain it they must do so; and if they make a similar demand on the Muslims it must be carried out except in the case of a holy war. Every one shall have his portion from the side to which he belongs; the Jews of al-Aws, their freedmen and themselves have the same standing with the people of this document in pure loyalty from the people of this document.” 
“The first treaty which the Messenger of God concluded with the Jews of Medina took place when he concluded a truce with the Nadir, Qurayza, and Qaynuqa in Medina, stipulating that they refrain from supporting the pagans and help the Muslims. …” 
The above evidences show that the Muslims and Banu Quraiza (and other tribes) in Madinah made a pact that no one will help an enemy against any of them. But, as we shall soon witness, this is exactly what the Banu Quraiza did against the Muslims!
3. Events that occurred Before Quraiza incident
The events that took place prior to the killing of the treacherous Banu Quraiza warrior-men, 1400 years ago.
With the help of the Jewish tribe, Banu Nadir, the polytheist Quraish leader Abu Sufyan had rounded up a force of 10.000 men to attack Madinah and kill the Muslims once for all. All Muhammed (p) could gather to fight back against Quraish was 3000 men; and they adopted a new way of defending the city of Madinah by digging a trench around
where Muslims resided in Medina so that the enemy warriors couldn’t easily attack the Muslims inside the city. The idea of digging up a trench was suggested by a Persian Muslim convert Salman Al Farisi.
When the polytheists attacked Madina, the Muslims were under siege for two weeks.
Abu Sufyan’s army was thrown aback by the design made for the defence of the city i.e., the great trench made around Madina where the Muslims resided, without which they were open, weak to cavalry attack. The offensive enemy found themselves unprepared for such an unexpected defence when they arrived.
On the other hand, while the Muslims were busy protecting the community from the deadly attack of the confederates, the Medinan Jewish tribe, Banu Qurayza were busy making negotiations with the polytheists of Makkah to turn against Muhammed (p). Authentic reports state that the polytheists and Quraiza were in negotiations:
“The enemy of God Huyayy b. Akhtab al-Nadri went out to Ka’b b. Asad al-Qurazi who had made a treaty with the apostle. When Ka’b heard of Huyayy’s coming he shut the door of his fort in his face, and when he asked permission to enter he refused to see him, saying that he was a man of ill omen and that he himself was in treaty with Muhammad and did not intend to go back on his word because he had always found him loyal and faithful. Then Huyayy accused him of shutting him out because he was unwilling to let him eat his corn.
This so enraged him that he opened his door. He said ‘Good heavens, Ka’b, I have brought you immortal fame and a great army. I have come with Quraysh with their leaders and chiefs which I have halted where the torrent-beds of Ruma meet; and Ghatafan with their leaders and chiefs which I have halted in Dhanab Naqma towards Uhud. They have made a firm agreement and promised me that they will not depart until we have made an end of Muhammad and his men.’ Ka’b said:
‘By God, you have brought me immortal shame and an empty cloud which has shed its water while it thunders and lightens with nothing in it. Woe to you Huyayy, leave me as I am, for I have always found him loyal and faithful.’ Huyayy kept on wheedling Ka’b until at last he gave way in giving him a solemn promise that if Quraysh and Ghatafan returned without having killed Muhammad he would enter his fort with him and await his fate. Thus Ka’b broke his promise and cut loose from the bond that was between him and the apostle.” 
“The enemy of God, Huyayy b. Akhtab, went out and came to Ka’b b. Asad al-Qurazi, who was the possessor of the treaty and covenant of the Banu Qurayzah. Ka’b had made a truce with the Messenger of God for his people, making a contract and covenanting with him on it. When Ka’b heard Huyayy b. Akhtab, he shut his fortress in his face. Huyayy asked to be allowed in, but Ka’b refused to open to him.
Huyayy called to him, ‘Ka’b, open to me!’ ‘Woe to you, Huyayy,’ answered Ka’b, ‘you are a man who brings bad luck! I have made a treaty with Muhammad and will not break the pact that exists between me and him. I have seen nothing but faithfulness and truth on his part.’ Huyayy said: ‘Woe to you! Open to me, and I will speak to you!’ ‘I will not do it,’ said Kab.
Huyayy said, ‘ By God, you have shut me out only on account of your gruel, lest I should eat any of it with you.’ This angered the man, so that he opened to him. Huyayy said: ‘Woe to you, Ka’b! I have brought you everlasting might and an overflowing sea. I have brought you Quraysh, with their leaders and chiefs, and have caused them to encamp where the stream beds meet at Rumah, and Ghatafan, with their leaders and Chiefs, and have caused them to encamp at Dhanab Naqama beside UHUD.
They have made a treaty and covenant with me not to withdraw until they root out Muhammed and THOSE WHO ARE WITH HIM.’ Ka’b b. Asad said to him: ‘By God, you have brought me everlasting humiliation – a cloud that has already sheds its water, that thunders and lightens but has nothing in it. Woe to you! Leave me to continue with Muhammad as I am now, for I have seen nothing from Muhammed except truth and faithfulness.’
But Huyayy kept wheedling Ka’b
UNTIL HE YIELDED TO HIM, Huyayy having given him a promise and oath by God that ‘If Quraysh and Ghatafan retreat without having killed Muhammed, I will enter your fortresses with you, so that whatever happens to you shall happen to me.’ So Ka’b b. Asad broke his treaty and renounced the bond that had existed between him and the Messenger of God.” 
From the above reports, we see that Huyayy b. Akhtab al-Nadri visited Ka’b b. Asad al-Qurazi house on changing his mind to break his pact and that he should join the enemies of the Muslims in order to slaughter the Muslim community.
At first Ka’b b. Asad al-Qurazi was not convinced and tried avoiding what Huyayy b. Akhtab was saying but eventually, as the report informs us, Ka’b b. Asad gave in and sided with the enemies of Muhammed (p) to fight against the Muslims.
4. Prophet Muhammed (p) Thwarted Their Plans
Reading the above reports, we see that the Muslims were surrounded from all sides during the siege, Muhammed (p) had no choice left at this point but send Nu’aym Ibn Mas’ud, to divide his enemies from within.
“Then Nu’aym b. Mas’ud b. Amir b. Unayf b. Tha’alaba b. Qunfud b. Hilal b. Kalawa b. Ashja b. Rayth b. Ghatafan came to the apostle saying that he had become a Muslim though his own people did not know of it, and let him give what orders he would. The Prophet said: ‘You are only one man among us, so go and awake distrust among the enemy to draw them off from us if you can, for there is deceit in war.
Thereupon, Nu’aym went off to B. Quryaza, with whom he had been a boon companion in His heathen days, and reminded them of his affection for them and of the special tie between them. When they acknowledged that they did not suspect him he said:
‘Quraysh and Ghatafan are not like you; the land is your land, your property, your wives, and your children are in it; you cannot leave it and go somewhere else. Now Quraysh and Ghatafan have come to fight Muhammad and his companions and you have aided against him, but their land, their property, and their wives are not here, so they are not like you.
If they see an opportunity they will make the most of it; but if things go badly they will go back to their own land and leave you to face the man in your country and you will not be able to do so if you are left alone. So do not fight along with these people until you take hostages from their chiefs who will remain in your hands as a security that they will fight Muhmmad with you until you make an end of him.’ The Jews said that this was excellent advice.
Then he went to Quraysh and said to Abu Sufyan b. Harb and his company: ‘You know my affection for you and that I have left Muhammad. Now I have heard something which I think it my duty to tell you of by way of warning, but regard it as confidential.’ When they said that they would, he continued, ‘Mark my words, the Jews have regretted their action in opposing Muhammad and have sent to tell him so, saying:
‘Would you like us to get hold of some chiefs of the two tribes of Quraysh and Ghatafan and hand them over to you so that you can cut their heads off? Then we can join you in exterminating the rest of them. He has sent word back to accept their offer; so if the Jews send to you to demand hostages, don’t send them a single man.’
Then he went to Ghatafan and said: ‘You are my stock and my family, the dearest of men to me, and I do not think that you can suspect me.’ They agreed that he was above suspicion, and so he told them the same story as he had told Quraysh.
On the night of the Sabbath of Shawwal 5 A.H., it occurred by divine providence that Abu Sufyan and the chiefs of Ghatafan sent Ikrima b. Abu Jahl to B. Qurayza with some of their selected men saying that they had no permanent camp, that the horses and camels were dying; therefore they must make ready for battle and make an end of Muhammad once and for all. They replied that it was the Sabbath, a day on which ritually do no work, and it was well known what had happened to those of their people who had violated the Sabbath.
They added: ‘Moreover we will not fight Muhammad along with you until you give us hostages whom we can hold as security until we make an end of Muhammad; for we fear that if the battle goes against you and you suffer heavily you will withdraw at once to you country and leave us alone with the man in our country, and we cannot face him alone.’
When the messengers returned with their reply, the Quraysh and Ghatafan said that what Nu’aym told them was thus the truth. Then they resolved: ‘Send to B. Qurayza that we will not give them a single man, and if they want to fight let them come out and fight.’ Having received this message from the Quraysh, B. Quryaza said: ‘What Nu’aym told you is the truth.
The people are bent on fighting and if they get an opportunity they will take advantage of it; but if they do not they will withdraw to their own country and leave us to face this man alone here. So send word to them that we will not fight Muhammad with them until they give us hostages as a security.’
But the Quraysh and the Ghatafan refused to do so, and God sowed distrust between them and sent very strong cold wind against them in those winter nights which upset their cooking-pots and overthrew their tents.
Then Abu Sufyan said: ‘O Quraysh, we are not in a permanent camp; the horses and camels are dying; the B. Qurayza have broken their word to us and we have heard disquieting reports of them. You can see the violence of the wind which leaves us with neither cooking-pots, nor fire, nor tents to count on. Be off, for I am going! Then he went to his camel which was hobbled, mounted it, and beat it so that it got up on its legs…
The Ghatafan heard of what the Quraysh expectedly did, that they broke up and returned to their own country.
In the following morning, the Prophet and the Muslims left the trench and returned to Medina, laying their arms aside. 
When the news of the treachery of B. Qurayza reached the Messenger of God and the Muslims, the Messenger of God sent out Sa’d b. Mu’adh b. al-Nu’man b. Imru al-Qays (one of the Banu Abd al-Ashhal who at that time was the chief of al-Aws), Sa’d b. Ubadah b. Dulaym (one of the Banu Sa’idah b. Kab b. al-Khazraj who at that time was the chief of al-Khazraj), and with them Abdullah b. Rawahah (a member of the Banu al-Harith b. al-Khazraji) and Khawwat b. Jubayr (a member of the Banu Amr b. Awf), and said:
‘Go and see whether what has reached us about these men is true or not. If it is true, speak to me in words that we can understand but that will be unintelligible to others, and do not break the strength of the people. But if these men remain loyal to the pact between us and them, announce it to the people.’
So they went out and came to the B. Qurayza. They found that they were actually guilty of worst of what had been reported about them! They slandered the Messenger of God and said, ‘There is no treaty between us and Muhammad and no covenant.’ Sa’d b. Ubadah reviled them and they reviled him – Sa’d was a man with sharp temper.
So Sa’d b. Mu’adh said to him, ‘Stop reviling them, for the disagreement between us and them is too serious for an exchange of taunts.’ The two Sa’d’s and the men with them went back to the Messenger of God, and having greeted him, said, ‘Adal and al-Qarah!’ [They meant that it was like the treachery of Adal and al-Qarah to the companions of the Messenger of God who were betrayed at al-Raji)’.(Khubayb b. Adi and his Companions..
The Messenger of God said: ‘God is the greatest! Rejoice, people of the Muslims!’”  
In simple words, Nuyam was sent to disunite the enemies within so as to weaken them and wouldn’t have the chance of attacking the Muslim community all together at once. Hence, Prophet (p) succeeded in this.
5. Banu Qurayza Siding, Waging War and Supplying Enemies with Weapons
Besides the foregoing evidences for the Banu Qurayza siding with the enemy, there are further evidences that the Banu Qurayza were also arming the enemy of the Muslims with weapons and supplies. Conclusively, there are evidences in other historical reports that the Banu Qurayza actively fought against the Muslims.
Commentary on Quran 8:55 – 58 from Tabari:
“Those of them with whom thou hast made compact, then they break their compact every time’: ‘You, Muhammed, took from them their bonds (muwathiqahum) and compacts (uhudahum) that they would not fight you nor aid anyone who fights you, like Qurayza and (people) like them, who had compacts (ahd) and treaties (aqd)’; then they break’ … : they fight you (harabuka) and aid (zaharu) against you.’ (Al-Tabari, Tafsir, [ed. Shakir] volume 14, page 21 – 22) 
Muqatil ibn Sulayman al-Balkhi – Muqatil Tafsir:
‘The Jews violated the compact between them and the Prophet and aided the unbelievers of Mecca by providing them with weapons with which to fight the Prophet and his Companions. (Tafsir Muqatil, volume 1, 147a) 
Tafsir Baghawi on 8:56
[This verse refers] to the Jews of Qurayza who broke the treaty between themselves and the Messenger of God by furnishing the heathen with weapons in order to help them in fighting the Prophet. But afterwards they said: ‘We forgot, and we did wrong.’ Therefore the Prophet concluded a second treaty with them, until they broke it by inciting the unbelievers against the Messenger of God on yawm al-Ahzab. Ka’b b. al-Ashraf went to Mecca and established an alliance, directed against the Prophet, between them.”(Tafsir Baghawi, volume 2, page 257) 
Besides the above, we also have historical Hadith shedding more light on Banu Qurayzah’s treachery:
“Narrated Ibn `Umar: Bani An-Nadir and Bani Quraiza fought (against the Prophet violating their peace treaty), so the Prophet exiled Bani An-Nadir and allowed Bani Quraiza to remain at their places (in Medina) taking nothing from them till THEY FOUGHT AGAINST THE PROPHET AGAIN.
He then killed their men and distributed their women, children and property among the Muslims, BUT SOME OF THEM CAME TO THE PROPHET AND HE GRANTED THEM SAFETY, and they embraced Islam. He exiled all the Jews from Medina. They were the Jews of Bani Qainuqa’, the tribe of `Abdullah bin Salam and the Jews of Bani Haritha and all the other Jews of Medina.” (Sahih al-Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Hadith 362).
Sunan Abi Dawud:
“Ibn ‘Umar said ‘The Jews Al Nadir and Quraizah fought with the Apostle of Allah, so the Apostle of Allah expelled Banu Al Nadir and allowed the Quraizah to stay and favored them. The Quraizah thereafter fought (with the Prophet)‘. So he killed their men and divided their women, property and children among Muslims except some of them who associated with the Apostle of Allah. He gave them protection and later on they embraced Islam.
The Apostle of Allah expelled all the Jews of Madeenah in toto, Banu Qainuqa, they were the people of ‘Abd Allah bin Salam, the Jews of Banu Harith and any of Jews who resided in Madeenah.” (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 19, Hadith 2999)
Musannaf Abd al-Razzaq:
“Abd al-Razzaq on the authority of Musa b. Uqba: The Nadir and Qurayza fought the Prophet; the Prophet expelled the Nadir and agreed that Qurayza should stay. Later QURAYZA FOUGHT THE PROPHET. They were defeated, the men were executed, the women, children and property were divided among the Muslims. SOME OF THE JEWS RECEIVED THE AMAN (SAFETY) OF THE PROPHET and converted to Islam.” (Musannaf Abd al-Razzaq, volume 6, pages 54 – 55) 
Musnad ibn Hanbal:
“The Jews of Banu Nadir and Banu Qurayza attacked the Messenger of God. So the Messenger of God in turn expelled the Banu Nadir, but warranted the security of the B. Qurayza and made an agreement with them. [This lasted] until the Qurayza took to military action after that.” (Musnad Ibn Hanbal, volume 9, page 181) 
The following Hadith also shows that the Prophet (p) was on guard and warning his people that the Banu Qurayza tribe may attack, slaughter Muslims (this incident took place during the Battle of the Confederates):
“Carry your weapons with you for I fear the tribe of Quraiza (may harm you).” (Sahih Muslim Book 26, Hadith 5557)
Muwatta Imam Malik:
“I went to Abu Said al-Khudri and found him praying. I sat to wait for him until he finished the prayer. I heard a movement under a bed in his room, and it was a snake. I stood up to kill it, and Abu Said gestured to me to sit. When he was finished he pointed to a room in the house and said, ‘Do you see this room?’ I said, ‘Yes.’ He said, ‘There was a young boy in it who had just got married.
He went out with the Messenger of God, to al-Khandaq, (the ditch which the Muslims dug in the 5th year of the Hijra to defend Madina against the Quraysh and their allies). When he was there, the youth came and asked his permission, saying, “Messenger of God. Give me permission to return to my family.” The Messenger of God, gave him permission and said, “Take your weapons with you, for I fear the Banu Quraydha (Qurayzah) tribe. They may harm you. …” (Muwatta Malik Book 54, Hadith 33)
The following report from al-Waqidi (745 – 822 AD) points out to us that the men of Banu Qurayza showered the Muslims with arrows, wounding a number of Muslims:
“The elders of the banu Waqid informed me that they took their women and children to the fortress while they were with the Prophet, but they had promised to meet their families at mid day, with the permission of the Prophet. The Prophet, however, forbade them, but when they begged, he commanded them to TAKE THEIR WEAPONS, FOR FEAR THAT THE BANU QURAYZA MIGHT ATTACK THEM.
Hilal b. Umayya used to say: I approached with a group of my people and the Banu Amr b. Awf. We had deviated from al-Jasr, and from Safna and we took the road to Quba. When we reached Aswa, all of a sudden, A GROUP OF THEM (THE BANU QURAYZA), INCLUDING NABBASH B. QAYS AL-QURAZI SPRAYED IS WITH ARROWS FOR W WHILE, we aimed back at them, and SOME OF US WERE WOUNDED. Then they withdrew to their garrison and we returned to our familes. …
While the Messenger of God and the Muslims were in al-Khandaq, Umar b. al-Khattab came to the Messenger of God who was in his tent – the ten was made of leather and had been put up beside the masjid, which was at the bottom of the mountain. With the Messenger of God was Abu Bakr. The Muslims at their trench were taking shifts. With them were some thirty horses. …
They employed men and placed them in positions at the trench, until Umar arrived. He said, ‘O Messenger of God, it has reached me that the BANU QURAYZA HAVE DESTROYED THE AGREEMENT ARE PREPARING FOR WAR. That distressted the Messenger of God and he said, ‘Whom shall we sent to seek out information about them?’ Umar said, ‘al-Zubayr b. al-Awwam.’ The first of the people that the Messenger of God sent was al-Zubayr b. al-Awwam.
He said, ‘God to the Banu Qurayza.’ Zubayr went and observed, then he returned and said, ‘O Messenger of God, I saw them putting their fortresses in order, and preparing the roads and they have herded their cattle.’ That was when the Messenger of God said, ‘Indeed for every Prophet is a disciple. Al-Zubayr is my disciple and the son of my aunt.’ Then the Messenger of God called for Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh and Sa’d b. Ubada and Usayd b. Hudayr.
He said, ‘Indeed it has reached me that the Banu Qurayza have destroyed the agreement which was between us, and gone to war. Go and observe if what has reached me is true. If it is baseless, proclaim it aloud. If it is true say it in code and I will know. Do not undermine the support of the Muslims. … …
The Messenger of God said: Indeed I hope to circumambulate the ancient house and take the key, for God will destroy Khusrau and Ceasar and their wealth will be paid in the way of God. He was saying that when he saw the suffering of the Muslims, and Mu’attib heard him and repeated what he said. Ibn Abi Sabra related to me from Harith b. al-Fudayl saying:
The Banu Qurayza intended to raid the main part of Medina by night. They sent Huyayy b. Akhtab to the Quraysh to bring with them a thousand men, and from the Ghatafan a thousand, to attack them. News of that great misfortune came to the Messenger of God, so he sent Salama b. Aslam b. Huraysh al-Ashhali with two hundred men, and Zayd b. Haritha with three hundred, to protect Medina while proclaiming takbir, and with them were cavalry of the Muslims. When it was morning, they were safe. Abu Bakr al-Siddiq used to say:
We feared more our children in Medina from the Qurayza than from the Quraysh and Ghatafan. I used to go to the hill of Sal’ and look at the houses of Medina. When I saw them calm, I would praise God.” (The Life of Muhammad: Al-Waqidi’s Kitab Al-Maghazi [Translator: Rizwi Faizer] page 216 – 226)
These (above) historical traditions show that the Banu Qurayza more than once supported the Quraysh enemy in attacking the Muslims in Madinah, financially, militarily, and giving them supplies of weapons against the Muslims. It thus shows that the Banu Qurayza weren’t innocent as Orientalists and other critics make them out to be.
6. Banu Quraiza were left to face the “music” alone
What Nu’aym Ibn Mas’ud did was indeed a victory and now the Banu Qurayza were left by themselves to face the music. Coming back from Khandaq after which the Meccan polytheists Makkans retreated, the Prophet (p) didn’t even put his armour and sword down when Angel Gabriel commanded him to march against the Banu Quraiza for what they had done.
“Narrated by A’isha : … When he returned from the Ditch and laid down his arms and took a bath, the angel Gabriel appeared to him and he was removing dust from his hair (as if he had just returned from the battle). The latter said: You have laid down arms. By God, we haven’t (yet) laid them down. So march against them. The Messenger of Allah asked: Where? He pointed to Banu Quraiza.
So the Messenger of Allah fought against them. They surrendered at the command of the Messenger of Allah, but he referred the decision about them to Sa’d who said: I decide about them that those of them who can fight be killed, their women and children taken prisoners and their properties distributed (among the Muslims).” (Sahih Muslim: Book 19, Hadith 4370)
As he heard these words from Angel Gabriel, the Prophet (p) aroused his Companions (Sahaba) to march upon the Banu Qurayza tribe. They arrived and found the Banu Quraiza in their fortresses. The Prophet (p) would have forgiven them had they asked, but they preferred to resist fighting him and hurl abuse at him at the same time [Ibn Ishaq]:
“The prophet ordered it to be announced that none should perform the afternoon prayer until after he reached B. Qurayza. The apostle sent Ali forward with his banner and the men hastened to it. Ali advanced until he came near the forts he heard insulting language used of the apostle.” 
Instead of begging for forgiveness for what they did do against the Muslims, here we the Banu Qurayzah insulting the Prophet (p) at the same time still wanted to fight ready from their fort.
The Prophet (p) besieged them for over 3 weeks at the end they surrendered in terms that they should be left to be judged by a former Jew, by the name of Sa’d bin Mu’adh to judge them on their treachery. Hence Sa’d brought out the Torah to judge them, and he decreed by the Law of Torah (Deuteronomy) that warrior-men who participated in this be killed and the rest be enslaved or freed:
“When thou comest nigh unto a city to fight against it, then proclaim peace unto it. And it shall be, if it make thee answer of peace, and open unto thee, then it shall be, that all the people that is found therein shall be tributaries unto thee, and they shall serve thee. And if it will make no peace with thee, but will make war against thee, then thou shalt besiege it:
And when the LORD thy God hath delivered it into thine hands, thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword: But the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself; and thou shalt eat the spoil of thine enemies, which the LORD thy God hath given thee. (Bible – Deuteronomy 20:10-14)
I find it amusing for the double standards and hypocrisy of the detractors, they attack Prophet Muhammed (p) for the judgement passed onto the Jewish tribe Banu Qurayza, from their own Book. If Christians and Jews and others find this ruling from their own book abhorrent then they should tear away such verses apart from the Bible. The blame should be on the Bible for making such rulings for those who commit treachery and wage war.
Lastly, critics always fail to tell is the judgement was not passed by Prophet Muhammed himself but by a former Jew, Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh, who was CHOSEN by the Banu Qurayza to judge their treachery according to their scriptures.
7. Who Were Killed?
According to historical evidences only the warrior-men were killed. Those who actively participated in the treachery and were siding in fighting against the Muslims were killed. Historical reports state the following:
Kitab Futuh al-Buldan:
The Prophet besieged banu Kuraizah for few days in Dhu-l-qa’dah, and a few days in Dhu-l-Hijjah, of the year 5 After Hejira, the whole period being fifteen days. These Banu Quraizah were among those who had assisted in the fight against the Prophet in the battle of al-Khandaq (the moat) also called battle of al-Ahzab [the confederates].
Finally they surrendered and he installed Sa’d ibn Mu’adh al-Ausi as their ruler. The latter decreed that every ADULT BE EXECUTED, that women and children be carried as captives and that all that they possessed be divided among the Moslems. …” (Kitab Futuh al-Buldan, volume 1, page 40) 
The people of (Banu) Quraiza agreed to accept the verdict of Sa`d bin Mu`adh. So the Prophet sent for Sa`d, and the latter came (riding) a donkey and when he approached the Mosque, the Prophet said to the Ansar, “Get up for your chief or for the best among you.” Then the Prophet said (to Sa`d).” These (i.e. Banu Quraiza) have agreed to accept your verdict.” Sa`d said, “KILL THEIR WARRIORS and take their offspring as captives, “On that the Prophet said, “You have judged according to Allah’s Judgment,” or said, “according to the King’s judgement.”(Sahih al-Bukhari volume 5, Book 59, Hadith 447)
“It has been narrated on the authority of Ibn Umar that the Jews of Banu Nadir and Banu Quraiza fought against the Messenger of Allah who expelled Banu Nadir, and allowed Quraiza to stay on, and granted favour to them until they too fought against him THEN HE KILLED THEIR MEN, and distributed their women, children and properties among the Muslims, except that some of them had joined the Messenger of Allah who granted them security. They embraced Islam. The Messenger of Allah turned out all the Jews of Medina. Banu Qainuqa’ (the tribe of ‘Abdullah b. Salim) and the Jews of Banu Haritha and every other Jew who was in Medina.”(Sahih Muslim Book 19 Hadith 4364)
The Apostle had ordered that every adult (who participated in treachery) of theirs should be killed. Shu’ba b. al-Hajjaj told me from Abdu’l-Malik b. Umayr from Atiya al-Qurzai: The Apostle had ordered that every adult of B. Qurayza should be killed. I was a lad and they found that I was NOT AN ADULT and so they let me go.
Kitab al-Maghazi – al-Waqidi:
… Ibrahim b. Ja’far related to me from his father, who said: When the Banu Qurayza were killed, Husayl b. Nuwayra al-Ashjari arrived at Khaybar- he had gone for two days. The Jews of the Banu Nadir- Sallam b. Mishkam, Kinana b. Rabi b. Abi l-Huqayq and the Jews of khaybar were sitting in council to consider the news of the Qurayza. It had reached them that the Messenger of God had besieged the Qurayza, and they dreaded what it was. They said, ‘What brought you’? He said, ‘Evil. The QURAYZA WARRIORS were executed by the sword,’… ” 
Ibn ‘Umar said “The Jews Al Nadir and Quraizah fought with the Apostle of Allaah, so the Apostle of Allaah expelled Banu Al Nadir and allowed the Quraizah to stay and favored them. The Quraizah thereafter fought (with the Prophet).” So HE KILLED THEIR MEN and divided their women, property and children among Muslims except some of them who associated with the Apostle of Allaah. He gave them protection and later on they embraced Islam.
The Apostle of Allaah expelled all the Jews of Madeenah in Toto, Banu Qainuqa, they were the people of ‘Abd Allaah bin Salam, the Jews of Banu Harith and any of Jews who resided in Madeenah.” (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 19, Hadith 2999)
Reading the above reports, one thing stands out clear, only men, “warriors” (adults), who participated in war against the Muslims were killed.
8. Were Children Killed?
A myth that has been circulating among orientalists and other critics of Islam is that children of Banu Qurayza were executed along with the men. The reports used for the allegations are the following:
It was narrated that Kathir bin As-Sa’ib said: “The sons of Quraizah told me that they were presented to the Messenger of Allah on the Day of Quraizah, and whoever (among them) had reached puberty, or had grown pubic hair, was killed, and whoever had not reached puberty and had not grown pubic hair was left (alive).” (Sunan an-Nasa’i Volume 4, Book 27, Hadith 3459).
“It was narrated that ‘Atiyyah said: ‘I was among the prisoners of Quraizah; we were examined, and whoever had grown (pubic) hair was killed, and whoever had not grown hair, he was allowed to live and was not killed.” (Sunan an-Nasa’I volume 5, Book 46, Hadith 4984).
“Narrated ‘Atiyyah Al-Qurazi: “We were presented to the Messenger of Allah on the day of (the battle of) Quraizah. Whoever had pubic hair was killed and whoever did not was left to his way. I was of those who did not have pubic hair so I was left to my way.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi, volume 3, Book 19, Hadith 1584)
Reading the above reports, some claim that kids were among those killed of the Banu Qurayza.
However, what critics fail to mention, or deliberately leave out, is that “pubic hair” was not the only factor used in this incident. We have a report from early Islamic scholar Al-Shaybani (Born: 749 AD, died 805) telling us that revelation was sent down to Prophet Muhammed (p) instructing him that puberty was the limit of their penal responsibility as fighting warriors those who willingly participated in this:
Al-Shaybani’s opinion is different: he points out that there are differences in the age of puberty between various peoples (for instance between Turks and Indians). But in the case of Banu Qurayza the Prophet disclosed to Sa’d b. Mu’adh (on the basis of a revelation) that their age of puberty WAS THE LIMIT OF THEIR PENAL RESPONSIBILITY AS FIGHTING PERSON” (Al-Shaybani, op. cit., volume 2, page 591) 
Some may ask, what is penal responsibility?
Penal responsibility, or criminal responsibility, refers to a person’s ability to understand when the crime was committed. A person is responsible and could go to jail having fully known at the time of the crime what they did, and that they understood the implications.
So besides the prerequisite for pubic hair, the treacherous Banu Qurayza were also checked out for having possessed the requisite state of mind when they committed the treachery.
Hence, those who understood clearly and were aware that what they did were the only ones who were killed. Those who didn’t understand the crime because they don’t know what was right or wrong (even though having pubic hair), were not touched.
To recap, the historical reports already mentioned all quite clearly state that people who were killed for actively been involved in this treachery were:
In fact one of those who witnessed everything explicitly states in a report in Ibn Ishaq that only adults who actively engaged in this treachery were killed;
“Shu’ba b. al-Hajjaj told me from Abdu’l-Malik b. Umayr from Atiya al-Qurzai: The Apostle had ordered that every adult of B. Qurayza should be killed. I was a lad and they found that I was not an adult and so they let me go” 
So for critics to claim that children were killed is a lie which has no historical basis. Furthermore, there are countless Hadiths where Prophet Muhammed (p) categorically and unequivocally forbade the killing of children:
“Narrated Ibn `Umar: During some of the Ghazawat of Allah’s Messenger a woman was found killed, so Allah’s Messenger forbade the killing of women and children.” (Sahih al-Bukhari volume 4, Book 52, Hadith 258)
Sunan Abi Dawud:
“It was narrated from Ibn ‘Umar that the Prophet saw a woman who had been killed on the road, and he forbade killing women and children.” (Sunan Abi Dawud, volume 4, Book 24, Hadith 2841).
That a woman was found killed in one of the expeditions of the Messenger of Allah, so the Messenger of Allah rebuked that, and he prohibited killing women and children. (Jami` at-Tirmidhi Volume 3, Book 19, Hadith 1569)
Sunan Abi Dawud:
“Narrated Anas ibn Malik: The Prophet said: Go in Allah’s name, trusting in Allah, and adhering to the religion of Allah’s Apostle. Do not kill a decrepit old man, or a young infant, or a child, or a woman; do not be dishonest about booty, but collect your spoils, do right and act well, for Allah loves those who do well.” (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 14, Hadith 2608).
“Do not kill women or children or an aged, infirm person. Do not cut down fruit-bearing trees. Do not destroy an inhabited place. Do not slaughter sheep or camels except for food. Do not burn bees and do not scatter them. …” (Muwatta Malik Book 21, Hadith 10).
“The Messenger of God forbade those whom he sent to Ibn Abi l-Huqayq to kill women and children.(Sunan al-Bayhaqi, volume 9, page 78) 
9. Were all the Banu Qurayza Men Killed?
Another myth propagated is that not a single man of the Qurayza was left alive. Thus they call it “genocide”. This claim again when we scratch the surface of it will be seen as nothing but lie based on distortion of historical facts.
The most authoritative book in Islam is the Quran. The Quran indicates that some of them lived and some were killed:
“And He brought down those who supported them among the People of the Scripture from their fortresses and cast terror into their hearts [so that] a party you killed, and you took captive a party” – Qur’an 33:26.
The Book of Hadiths also report to us some were killed and some were left alive:
“Narrated Ibn `Umar: Bani An-Nadir and Bani Quraiza fought (against the Prophet violating their peace treaty), so the Prophet exiled Bani An-Nadir and allowed Bani Quraiza to remain at their places (in Medina) taking nothing from them till they fought against the Prophet again. He then killed their men and distributed their women, children and property among the Muslims,
BUT SOME OF THEM CAME TO THE PROPHET AND HE GRANTED THEM SAFETY, and they embraced Islam. He exiled all the Jews from Medina. They were the Jews of Bani Qainuqa’, the tribe of `Abdullah bin Salam and the Jews of Bani Haritha and all the other Jews of Medina.” (Sahih al-Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Hadith 362)
Al-Musannaf abd al-Razzaq:
“Abd al-Razaq on the authority of Musa b. Uqba: The Nadir and Qurayza fought the Prophet; the Prophet expelled the Nadir and agreed that Qurayza should stay. Later Qurayza fought the Prophet. They were defeated, the men were executed, the women, children and property were divided among the Muslims. SOME OF THE JEWS RECEIVED THE AMAN (SAFETY) OF THE PROPHET and converted to Islam. (Al-Musannaf abd al-Razzaq, volume 6, page 54) 
Kitab Futuh al-Buldan:
“… The Prophet pressed siege against banu Quraizah until they surrendered to Sa’d ibn Mu’adh who decreed that their men be executed, their children be taken as captives and their possessions be divided. Accordingly, A CERTAIN NUMBER OF MEN WERE PUT TO DEATH ON THAT DAY.” (Kitab Futuh al-Buldan, volume 1, page 41) 
Sunan Abi Dawud:
Ibn ‘Umar said “The Jews Al Nadir and Quraizah fought with the Apostle of God, so the Apostle of God expelled Banu Al Nadir and allowed the Quraizah to stay and favored them. The Quraizah thereafter fought (with the Prophet).” So he killed their men and divided their women, property and children among Muslims
EXCEPT SOME OF THEM WHO ASSOCIATED WITH THE APOSTLE OF GOD. HE GAVE THEM PROTECTION AND LATER ON THEY EMBRACED ISLAM. The Apostle of God expelled all the Jews of Madinah, Banu Qainuqa, they were the people of ‘Abd Allaah bin Salam, the Jews of Banu Harith and any of Jews who resided in Madeenah.” (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 19, Hadith 2999)
I would like to emphasize here those that did receive pardon, later converted to Islam freely. Forced conversion is forbidden (Haram) in Islam. They were most probably pardoned because they weren’t involved in the treachery. In fact, the last Hadith (above) in Sunan Abi Dawud quoted, clearly states they were freed and “later” embraced Islam.
We also have definitive proof from a number of early historical sources, specifically mentioning names of Banu Qurayzah men who were left alive because they didn’t participate in this treachery in waging war against the Muslims.
“…Tha’labah b. Sa’yah, Usayd b. Sa’yah, and Asad b. Ubayd – a group of men from the Banu Hadl, not from the Banu Qurayzah or al-Nadir [their genealogy was superior to that], but cousins of the men in question – became Muslims the night that Qurayzah submitted to the judgment of the Messenger of God. During that night, Amr b. Su’da al-Qurazi went out and passed by the guards of the Messenger of God – Muhammad b. Maslamah al-Ansari was in charge of them that night.
When the latter saw Amr, he said, ‘Who said it?’ Amr b. Su’da,’ he replied. Amr had refused to go along with the Banu Qurayzah in their treachery toward the Messenger of God.
‘Never’, he had said, ‘Will I act treacherously toward Muhammad.’ Having recognized him, Muhammad b. Maslamah said, ‘O Noble’ – and he let him pass. Amr went his way and spent that night in the mosque of the Messenger of God in Medina. Then he went away, and no one knows to this day into which of God’s lands he went. His story was mentioned to the Messenger of God who said, “He was a man whom God rescued for his loyalty.”
According to Ibn Ishaq: Some men allege that he was bound with an old frayed rope along with the Banu Qurayzah who were bound when they submitted to the judgement of the Messenger of God. In the morning his rope was cast aside, and no one knew where he had gone. …” 
“Ibn Shihab al-Zuhri told me that Thabit b. Qays b. al-Shammas had gone to al-Zabir b. Bata al-Qurazi who was Abu Abdu-l-Rahman. Al-Zabir had spared Thabit during the pagan era. One of al-Zabir’s sons told me that he had spared him on the day of Bu’ath, having captured him and cut off his forelock and then let him go. Thabit came to him (he was then an old man) and asked him if he knew him, to which he answered, ‘Would a man like me not recognize a man like you?’ He said: ‘I want to repay for your service to me. ‘He said, ‘The noble repays the noble.’
Thabit went to the Apostle and told him that al-Zabir had spared his life and he wanted to repay him for it, and the Apostle said that his life would be spared. When he returned and told him that the Apostle had spared his life he said, ‘What does an old man without family and without children want with life?’
Thabit went again to the Apostle, who promised to give him his wife and children. When he told him he said, ‘How can a household in the Hijaz live without property?’ Thabit secured the Apostle’s promise that his property would be restored and came and told him so, and he said, ‘O Thabit, what has become of him whose face was like a Chinese mirror in which the virgins of the tribe could see themselves, Ka’b b. Asad?’ ‘Killed,’ he said.
‘And what of the prince of the Desert and the sown, Huyayy b. Akhtab?’ ‘Kiled.’ And what of our vanguard when we attacked and our rearguard when we fled (T. returned to the charge), Azzal b. Samaw’al?’ ‘Killed.’ ‘And what of the two assemblies?’ meaning b. Ka’b b. Qurayza and B. Amr b. Qurayza. ‘killed’. He said,
‘Then I ask of you, Thabit by my claim on you that you join me with my people, for life holds no joy now that they are dead, and I cannot bear to wait another moment to meet my loved ones.’ So Thabit went up to him and struck off his head.
Thabit b. Qays said concerning that, mentioning al-Zabir b. Bata:
My obligation is ended; I was noble and persistent when others swerved from steadfastness. Zabir had a greater claim than any man on me And when his wrists were bound with cords I went to the Apostle that I might free him. To Apostle was a very sea of generosity to us.” 
Kitab Al-Maghazi – Al-Waqidi:
… al-Zabir b. bata had done a favour for Thabot b. Qays on the day of Bu’ath. Thabit came to al-Zabir and said, ‘O Abu Abd al-Rahman, do you know me?’ He replied, ‘Do you think one like me will not know the likes of you.’ Thabir said, ‘You have done me a good deed and I want to repay you.’ Zabir replied, ‘Indeed the noble reward the noble. I am in the greatest need of your help today.’ Thabit came to the Messenger of God and said, ‘O messenger of God, Zabir helped me when my hopes were cut off on the day of Bu’ath. I mentioned this good deed to you, for I desire to help him, so give him to me.’
The Messenger of God said, ‘He is for you.’ Then Tabit came to Zabir and said, ‘ Indeed the Messenger of God has given you to me.’ Al-Zabir said, ‘I am an old man. I have no family or son or wealth in Yathrib. What will I do with my life?’ So Thabit came to the Messenger of God and said, ‘O Messenger of God, give me his son.’ So he gave him his son. Then he said, ‘O Messenger of God, give me his property and his family.’ So the Messenger of God gave Thabit Zabir’s property, son and family.
Thabit returned to al-Zabir and said, ‘Indeed the Messenger of God has given me your son and your property and your family.’ Zabir said, ‘O Thabit, you have rewarded me and repaid your debt, but, what has happened to him whose face is like a Chinese mirror, in which virgins of the neighbourhood could see themselves, Ka’b b. Asad?’
He said, ‘He is killed.’ Al-Zabir said, ‘What happened to the master of the cities and the desert, the lord of the two neighbourhoods who carries them in war and deeds them at home, Huyayy b. Akhtab?’ He said, ‘He is killed.’
Al-Zabir said, ‘What happened to the leader of the vanguard of the Jews at war when they charge, and their protector at the back when they retreat, Ghazzal b. Samaw’al?’ He said, ‘He is killed.’
Al-zabir said, ‘O Thabit? What good is life after those? Must I return to the home they were living in to stay after them? I do not desire that. Indeed I ask you in return for my debt to send me forward and kill me with the killing of the nobility of the Banu Qurayza. Take my sword for surely it is sharp, and strike me with it, and finish it off. Raise your hand away from the food and bring it closer to the head, lower from the brain. Indeed it is best that the body remain with the neck. O Thabit, I am impatient to find my loved ones.’
‘O Thabir, send me forward and kill me.’ Thabit said, ‘I will not kill you.’ Al-Zabir said, ‘I do not care who kills me! But, O Thabit, see to my wife and my son for they anxious about death. Ask your friend to releasethem and return their property. I will go towards Al-Zubayr b. al-Awwam.’ He reproached al-Zubayr and al-Zubayr struck off his head.
Thabit asked the Messenger of God about his wife and his property and his son.
The Messenger of God returned all of that to his son. He set his wife free, and he returned their property of dates and camels and clothes, but not the weapons, to them. They stayed with the family of Thabit b. Qays b. Shammas. 
Although Zabir Thabit was forgiven for taking part in this, he none the less, sadly wanted to be killed since his other friends were killed because of the treachery they were involved in. Notice, the Muslims didn’t want to kill him but he insisted on it.
Moreover, the above reports show that his family actively participated in this treachery and wanted to wage war against the Muslims. Notice the words that were used that they got everything back except “their weapons”. Showing that some of the family members were also liable for death penalty hadn’t it been for one of the Companions of the Prophet (p) intervening on their behalf by being forgiving them.
The Prophet in his noble, merciful character let all the family go and they got everything back; they walked away free including Zabir’s grown son.
Islamic scholars also mention a number of Banu Quraiza men’s names who were left alive for their faithfulness in not getting involved in this treachery.
Imam Shafi’i , a prominent second-century scholar, says:
“…not all of them took part in aiding against the Prophet and his Companions, but all of them remained in their stronghold and did not abandon the treacherous people from among them, EXCEPT A SMALL PARTY (NAFAR) AND THIS (ACTION) SAVED THEIR LIVES AND KEPT THEIR POSSESSIONS IN THEIR HANDS“. 
Shaykh Muhammed Al-Ghazali says:
“The siege continued for twenty-five days during which the Muslims allowed the Jews who had refused to betray the Prophet during the Battle of the Ditch TO LEAVE AND GO WHEREVER THEY WISHED AS A REWARD FOR THEIR FAITHFULNESS. 
Islamic scholar, Syed Maududi:
From among the prisoners of the Banu Quraizah, the Holy Prophet forgave Zabir bin Bata and ‘Amr bin Sa’d (or Ibn Su’da), the former because he had given refuge to Hadrat Thabit bin Qais Ansari in the Battle of Bu’ath, in the pre-Islamic days of ignorance; therefore, he handed him over to Hadrat Thabit that he may repay him for his favor. And he forgave ‘Amr bin Sa`d because it was he who was exhorting his tribe not to be treacherous when the Bani Quraizah were committing breach of the trust with the Holy Prophet. 
Dr. Resis Haylamaz:
THE FATE OF THOSE PARDONED AND THE CAPTIVES:
“The judgement passed by Sa’d ibn Muadh did not include all of the Banu Qurayza; among the Banu Qurayza that day there were youths such as atiyyatu-l-Qurazi and Rifa’a ibn Shamwal Amr ibn Su’da, ibn Sa’ya’s sons Salaba and Usayd and their cousin Asad ibn Ubayd. THESE MEN OF CONSCIENCE WERE FORGIVEN. Zabir ibn Bata had cone a great favour for Thabot ibn Qays ibn Shammas during the times of Buath wars. …” 
10. How Many Men of the Quraiza were Killed?
“Then they surrendered, and the Apostle confined them in Medina, in the house of d. al-Harith, a women of banu al-Najjar. Then the Apostle of God went out to the market of Medina and dug trenches in it. Then he sent for them and struck off their heads…” 
Number of those executed is uncertain: According to few sources, the number given for the men killed, for the treachery they committed are, 400, 500, and Ibn Ishaq puts it as high 600 – 900 men were executed. These numbers are not given in the Quran, and Hadith which are the most authoritative in Islam. The numbers are only reported in some sources which some scholars have doubt on.
This doubt itself is well evidenced. When we read Ibn Ishaq he tells that after the banu Quraiza surrendered to be judged, they were sent to the house (dar) of Bint al-harith, a women belonging to the Banu al-Najjar tribe.
If the number of 600 – 900 is true, then each of the warrior men would on average, have two kids plus wife, times the 900 by 3, we would have over 2000 people confined in one house. This is impossible given the fact that no such prison existed in Madinah, to house that many people. In fact it was not even a prison, it was just a house.
Furthermore, if we were to go with this, Madinah must have had one of the most advanced, well-organized prison’s ever. Given that over 2000 people had to be tied up, how big was Haritha’s house? Were the prisoners routinely fed, taken to toilet whenever needed? Given that none of the fully grown warriors (900) didn’t run away I doubt (as other scholars have) that such was the number of soldiers killed.
Thus the most appropriate thing regarding the number of the treacherous Banu Quraiza men executed is to ignore the contradictory and doubtful sources that mention the numbers. If these sources can’t agree with one another besides being doubtful to begin with, how can we be confident that such were the actual number of the men executed? Given the fact that Quran and Hadith are silent on the number and most importantly tell us that only some were killed and some were spared, we can confidently say that the varying numbers from 400 to 900 is nothing but conjecture.
Islamic scholar Barakat Ahmad lists a number of great examples where the Quraysh made major issues regarding smaller matters and if such a “massacre” ever occurred why isn’t it mentioned in any historical record from Jews, Christians or any reliable Muslim record?
The incident of the B. Qurayzah occurred before the armistice of Hudaybiyah and the peace with Khaybar were achieved. It is impossible that the pagans and the Munafiqun (hypocrites) would have remained muted. When Jahsh violated the sacred month and shed blood therein, when the palms of the B. al-Nadir were burnt, when the Apostle married the divorced wife of his adopted son, the people criticised and the Qur’an defended the Apostle.
It is improbable that the Apostle’s critics would have paid less attention to the lives of the Banu Qurayzah than to the palms of the B. al-Nadir. That the news of this ‘massacre’ did not reach Syria, which included Jerusalem and Adhra’at, with which the Medina Jews had contacts, and the Exilarchate in Iraq, which exercised religious authority over them is highly unlikely. 
11. Anti-Semitism claim
Another widely false idea held by critics, believed and circulated by bigots, is that the Banu Qurayza were killed because of the inherent hatred Muslims and the religion Islam have towards Jews as a race.
However, as we have already read the sources in history, these are baseless lies. The historical reports tell us that some of the Banu Quraiza men were killed because they actively committed the crime of treason, waged war and supplied the enemies of the Muslims with weapons and supplies, while they had a pact with the Muslims that they would not do any of this. And, the Banu Qurayza were Arab Jews. So it is inconceivable for Arabs to hate other Jews just for their race.
Muslims and the Arab Jews have been living in peace and harmony for centuries, from the time of the Prophet Muhammed to this. In fact we have authentic historical reports where the Prophet (p) even after the Banu Quraiza incident showed love, mercy, and kindness to Jews.
If the Prophet (p) really hated Jews as some critics claim, then why did he free those who didn’t partake in the treachery? The evidences shown in this article quite clearly show us that the Prophet (p) only killed some Banu Qurayza warrior-men because they broke the pact, waged war, and supplied enemies with weapons against the Muslims.
We have a number of incidents after the Banu Qurayza episode in which the Prophet (p) and his companions showed utmost respect to Jews.
11.1 – Islamic faith has never taught its followers to be anti-semitic. The Arab-Israeli conflict is a political conflict which started in the 1948, Muslims, Christians and Jews have lived in that area for centuries.
11.2 – The Quran tells us that Kosher food prepared by Jews is allowed for Muslims (Qur’an 5:5).
11.3 – Islam accepts and respects all Jewish Prophets: Moses, Solomon, David, Abraham etc.
11.4 – When the Prophet was asked by one his Companions why he stood up for Jewish funeral procession, he remarked that we are all equal in death. Respect was given to a funeral of a Jew at time of Mohammed (p):
…while Qais b. Sa’d and Sahl b. Hunaif were both in Qadislyya a bier passed by them and they both stood up. They were told that it was the bier of one of the people of the land (non-Muslim). They said that a bier passed before the Prophet and he stood up. He was told that he (the dead man) was a Jew. Upon this he remarked: Was he not a human being or did he not have a soul? (Sahih Muslim Book 4, Hadith 2098)
Sunan Abi Dawud:
Narrated Jabir: We were with the Prophet when a funeral passed hi and he stood up for it. When we went to carry it, we found that it was a funeral of a Jew. We, therefore said: Messenger of Allah, this is the funeral of a Jew. He said: Death is fearful event, so when you see a funeral, stand up. (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 20, Hadith 3168)
Jabir said: “The Prophet and his Companions stood up for the funeral of a Jew until it disappeared.” (Sunan an-Nasa’i Vol. 3, Book 21, Hadith 1930)
A funeral procession passed in front of us and the Prophet stood up and we too stood up. We said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! This is the funeral procession of a Jew.” He said, “Whenever you see a funeral procession, you should stand up.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, volume 2, Book 23, Hadith 398)
Sahl bin Hunaif and Qais bin Sa`d were sitting in the city of Al-Qadisiya. A funeral procession passed in front of them and they stood up. They were told that funeral procession was of one of the inhabitants of the land i.e. of a non-believer, under the protection of Muslims. They said, “A funeral procession passed in front of the Prophet and he stood up. When he was told that it was the coffin of a Jew, he said, “Is it not a living being (soul)?” (Sahih al-Bukhari, volume 2, Book 23, Hadith 399)
11.5 – The Prophet had a Jewish wife called Saffiya. Once, one the Prophet’s wives, Hafsah, called her, ‘daughter of a Jew”. Upon this, the Prophet (p) cautioned her to “Fear God”. He was not happy with her to call her such, and reprimanded her to think about what she says because she would be held liable for hurting her.
Narrated Anas: said: “It reached Safiyyah that Hafsah said: ‘The daughter of a Jew’ so she wept. Then the Prophet entered upon her while she was crying, so he said: ‘What makes you cry?’ She said: ‘Hafsah said to me that I am the daughter of a Jew.’ So the Prophet said: ‘And you are the daughter of a Prophet, and your uncle is a Prophet, and you are married to a Prophet, so what is she boasting to you about?’ Then he said: ‘Fear Allah, O Hafsah.’” (Jami at-Tirmidhi Vol. 1, Book 46, Hadith 3894)
11.6 – The Qur’an tells us that Muslim men are allowed to marry Jewish women (Qur’an 5:5). Thus if the religion and its founder were as the misguided critics claim then this would never have been allowed. But on the contrary, we see this endorsed by God and His Messenger in order to bring love and mercy and blood ties among Muslims and Jews.
11.7 – Once the Prophet (p) didn’t have enough food in his house, so he went to a Jew who had food and mortgaged his armour for the food.
Narrated `Aisha: The Prophet purchased food grains from a Jew on credit and mortgaged his iron armor to him. (Sahih al-Bukhari volume 3, Book 34, Hadith 282)
11.8 – The Prophet greeted Jews and Muslims together and insisted that Muslim should greet everyone:
Narrated Usamah bin Zaid: that the Prophet passed by a gathering in which the Muslims and the Jews were mixed, so he gave the Salam to them. (Jami at-Tirmidhi volume 5, Book 40, Hadith 2702)
Ibn ‘Abbas said, “Return the greeting to whomever it is, Jew, Christian, or Magian. That is because Allah says, ‘When you are greeted with a greeting, greet with one better than it or return it.’ (4: 86)” (Al-Adab Al-Mufrad Book 44, Hadith 1107)
The Prophet passed by a mixed company of people which included Muslims, polytheists and Jews, and he gave them the greeting (i.e., saying As- Salamu ‘Alaikum). (Riyad as-Salihin Book 6, Hadith 868)
11.9 – A companion of the Prophet (p), Jabir owned some money to a Jew. When he couldn’t pay back, he asked the Jew if he could pay the amount he owned the following year, the Jew refused and wanted his money straight away. The Prophet hearing this went over to the Jew and asked him to wait patiently till next year when he could pay. But the he refused even when the Prophet (p) insisted.
Thus there seemed to be compromise, so the Prophet (p) told Jabir to start working for the Jew by plucking dates so that he could pay back his money in time. Jabir agreed and started working hard until he paid back the Jewish man in full.
“Narrated Jabir bin `Abdullah: There was a Jew in Medina who used to lend me money up to the season of plucking dates. (Jabir had a piece of land which was on the way to Ruma). That year the land was not promising, so the payment of the debt was delayed one year. The Jew came to me at the time of plucking, but gathered nothing from my land. I asked him to give me one year respite, but he refused.
This news reached the Prophet whereupon he said to his companions, “Let us go and ask the Jew for respite for Jabir.” All of them came to me in my garden, and the Prophet started speaking to the Jew, but he Jew said, “O Abu Qasim!
I will not grant him respite.” When the Prophet saw the Jew’s attitude, he stood up and walked all around the garden and came again and talked to the Jew, but the Jew refused his request. I got up and brought some ripe fresh dates and put it in front of the Prophet.
He ate and then said to me, “Where is your hut, O Jabir?” I informed him, and he said, “Spread out a bed for me in it.” I spread out a bed, and he entered and slept.
When he woke up, I brought some dates to him again and he ate of it and then got up and talked to the Jew again, but the Jew again refused his request. Then the Prophet got up for the second time amidst the palm trees loaded with fresh dates, and said, “O Jabir! Pluck dates to repay your debt.”
The Jew remained with me while I was plucking the dates, till I paid him all his right, yet there remained extra quantity of dates. So I went out and proceeded till I reached the Prophet and informed him of the good news, whereupon he said, “I testify that I am Allah’s Messenger.”
(Sahih al-Bukhari volume 7, Book 65, Hadith 354)
“My father owed some dates to a Jew. He was killed on the Day of Uhud and he left behind two gardens. The dates owed to the Jew would take up everything in the two gardens. The Prophet said: ‘Can you take half this year and half next year?’ But the Jew refused. The Prophet said: ‘When the time to pick the dates comes, call me.’ So I called him and he came, accompanied by Abu Bakr.
The dates were picked and weighed from the lowest part of the palm trees, and the Messenger of Allah was praying for blessing, until we paid off everything that we owed him from the smaller of the two gardens, as calculated by ‘Ammar. Then I brought them some fresh dates and water and they ate and drank, then he said: ‘This is part of the blessing concerning which you will be questioned.’” (Sunan an-Nasa’i, volume 4, Book 30, Hadith 3669)
Narrated Jabir bin `Abdullah: When my father died he owed a Jew thirty Awsuq (of dates). I requested him to give me respite for repaying but he refused. I requested Allah’s Messenger to intercede with the Jew. Allah’s Messenger went to the Jew and asked him to accept the fruits of my trees in place of the debt but the Jew refused.
Allah’s Apostle entered the garden of the date-palms, wandering among the trees and ordered me (saying), “Pluck (the fruits) and give him his due.” So, I plucked the fruits for him after the departure of Allah’s Apostle and gave his thirty Awsuq, and still had seventeen Awsuq extra for myself. Jabir said:
I went to Allah’s Messenger to inform of what had happened, but found him praying the `Asr prayer. After the prayer I told him about the extra fruits which remained. Allah’s Messenger told me to inform (`Umar) Ibn Al-Khattab about it. When I went to `Umar and told him about it, `Umar said, “When Allah’s Messenger walked in your garden, I was sure that Allah would definitely bless it.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, volume 3, Book 41, Hadith 581)
What is remarkable about this story is that the Prophet (p) then in Medina had the power and the authority force the Jew to be paid back in any time he wished. But that was not his character, never was. He respected the Jewish man and recognized his due right and thus told his companion to work for him to pay back his debt in the shortest time possible.
This also shows that Muslims at the time freely interacted with the Jews and conferred them their due rights. They never treated others (non-Muslims) unjustly. This is the noble character of our beloved Prophet Muhammed (p) and those with him.
11.10 – Some Jews at the time of the Prophet (p) used to be very disrespectful in Madinah, so whenever they used to see the Muhammed (p) they used to greet him with, “As-Samu-Alaikum.” (i.e. death be upon you). Aisha the wife of the Prophet (p), hearing this, got angry and responded by saying to them: Death and the curse of God be upon you! The Prophet (p) demanded her to be calm and then told her that God loves the one who is kind and lenient in all matters:
“Narrated `Aisha: (the wife of the Prophet) A group of Jews entered upon the Prophet and said, “As-Samu-Alaikum.” (i.e. death be upon you). I understood it and said, “Wa-Alaikum As-Samu wal-la’n. (death and the curse of Allah be Upon you).” Allah’s Messenger said “Be calm, O `Aisha! Allah loves that one should be kind and lenient in all matters.” I said, “O Allah’s Messenger! Haven’t you heard what they (the Jews) have said?” Allah’s Messenger said “I have already told them: Upon you”(Sahih Bukhari, volume 8, book 53, Hadith 83).
11.11 – Another remarkable example is of Abdullah bin Amr who had slaughtered a sheep for his family and he asked whether he would give some of that meat to their neighbour who was a Jew. The Companion, Abdullah bn Amr, was thus following the Prophet Muhammed (p) in treating their neighbours kindly and politely and to share with them when there was enough food in their houses.
“Abdullah bin Amr had a sheep slaughtered for his family, so when he came he said: ‘Have you given some to our neighbour, the Jew? Have you given some to our neighbor, the Jew? I heard the Messenger of Allah saying: ‘Jibril continued to advise me about (treating) the neighbors so (kindly and politely), that I thought he would order me (from Allah) to make them heirs.” (Jami at-Tirmidhi, volume 4, Book 1, Hadith 1943).
Sunan Abi Dawud:
Abdullah ibn Amr slaughtered a sheep and said: Have you presented a gift from it to my neighbour, the Jew, for I heard the Messenger of Allah say: Gabriel kept on commending the neighbour to me so that I thought he would make an heir? (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 42, Hadith 5133)
Here again, we witnessed the noble character of our beloved Prophet Muhammed (p). He cared for everyone, be they those who have a religion or not – he treated all the same.
11.12 – The Prophet visited a sick Jew in bed:
Chapter: Visiting A Sick Dhimmi
Narrated Anas: A young Jew became ill. The Prophet went to visit him. He sat down by his head and said to him: Accept Islam. He looked at his father who was beside him near his head, and he said: Obey Abu al-Qasim. So he accepted Islam, and the Prophet stood up saying: Praise be to Allah Who has saved him through me from Hell. (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 20, Hadith 3089)
11.13 – A Jew gave free food because he heard about the noble, merciful character of Prophet Muhammed (p). This shows had the Prophet (p) been hostile to Jews, this Jew wouldn’t have given him something for free.
Sunan Abi Dawud:
Sahl bin Sa’d said: `Ali bin Abi Talib entered upon Fatimah while Hasan and Husain were crying. He asked: Why are they crying? She replied: Due to hunger. ‘Ali went out and found a dinar in the market. He then came to Fatima and told her about it. She said: Go to such and such a Jew and get some flour for us. He came to the Jew and purchased flour with it. He said : Are you the son-in-law of him who believes that he is the Messenger of Allah.
He said : Yes. The Jew said : Have your dinar with you and you will get the flour. Ali then went out and came to Fatima. He told her about the matter. She then said: Go to such and such a butcher and get some meat for us for a dirham. Ali went out and pawned the dinar for a dirham with him and got the meat, and brought it (to her).
She then kneaded the flour, put the utensil on fire and baked the bread. She sent for her father : (i.e. the Prophet (SWAS). He came to them. She said to him : Messenger of Allah, I tell you all the matter. If you think it is lawful for us, we shall eat it and you will eat with us. She said: The matter is such and such. He said: eat in the name of Allah. So they ate it. While they were (eating) at their place, a boy cried adguring in the name of Allah and Islam: He was searching the dinar. The Messenger of Allah (SWAS) commanded and he was called in.
He asked him. The boy replied, I lost it somewhere in the market. The Prophet (SWAS) said : `Ali, go to the butcher and tell him that the Messenger of Allah (SWAS) has asked you : send the dinar to me and one dirham of yours will be due on me. The butcher returned it and the Messenger of Allah (SWAS) handed it to him (the boy). (Sunan Abi Dawud Book 9, Hadith 1712)
From the above we may judge that the Prophet (p) always had kind feelings towards every human being. He loved and respected everyone. Hatred is something he never had, it was against his nature. And those who accuse him of anti-Semitism are nothing but bigots propelled by their inherent hatred towards Muhammad (p) to say anything bad against him with a view to tarnishing his noble character.
The evidences presented on Banu Qurayza’s treacherous warrior-men’s fate shows that we can get the clear picture that they were not innocent as some would like us to believe. Only the warrior-men who committed treachery and participated in combat against the Muslims were executed.
Hadn’t Sa’d ibn Mu’adh dealt with the treacherous among them, they would have gone and come back with other enemies to kill the Muslims once again. Just as Banu Nadir did when the Prophet (p) let them go – they came back and plotted to kill the Muslims in Madinah.
We have to look at the fact, hadn’t the Prophet (p) executed the traitors’, punished the treacherous warrior-men of Qurayza, they would have come back and slaughtered Muslim men, women and children. We have to remember, the Banu Qurayza already were forgiven once before for siding with enemies and when the Prophet forgave them, they hatched up further plots to kill Muslims.
The evidences shown proves that the Banu Qurayza broke the pact they had, they sided with enemy against the Muslims. They attacked Muslims, waged war against the Muslims. They armed Quraysh (and other enemies) with weapons and provisions against the Muslims.
The Banu Qurayza waging-war against Muslims part is mentioned in many authentic Hadiths, sadly the sources do not give us any more details where this battle took place. However, given these facts, we can safely state that, what those treacherous Banu Qurayza warrior-men got was justice of the highest order demanded for them to be their fate.
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], page 232-233
 Dhimmis and Others”, (“Jews and Christians and the World of Classical Islam”,) [Israel Oriental Studies], by Michael Lecker, volume 17, page 31
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], page 453
 History of al-Tabari, The Victory of Islam. Muhammad at Medina, [Translator Professor W. Montgomery Watt], volume 8, Page 14 – 15
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], pages 458 – 460).
 The History of al-Tabari – The Victory of Islam: Muhammad at Medina [Michael Fishbein – Translator], Volume 8, page 15
 Understanding who Adal and al-Qarah were, footonote 84 gives an explanation. “For the story of how a group of men from the clans of Adal and al-Qarah came to Muhammed in Medina in A. H. 4 and asked for me to instruct them in Islam and how, after Muhammed had sent six men back with them (including Khubayb b. Adi), they betrayed the six to the pro-Meccan Lihyan subtribe of Hudhayl (which had a vendetta against the Muslims) at the watering place of al-Raji…”
The History of al-Tabari – The Victory of Islam: Muhammad at Medina [Michael Fishbein – Translator], volume 8, page 16, footnote 84
 The Massacre of the Banu Quraiza. A re-examination of a tradition – [Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam (Magnes Press, Hebrew University of Jerusalem – 1986)] by, Professor Meir J. Kister, 8, page 81
 The Massacre of the Banu Quraiza. A re-examination of a tradition – [Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam (Magnes Press, Hebrew University of Jerusalem – 1986)] by, Professor Meir J. Kister, 8, page 95
 The Biography of Muhammad: The Issue of the Sources [Copyright 2000] By Marco Scholler, volume 32, page 31
 Al-Musannaf abd al-Razzaq’s isnaad as recorded, Abd al-Razzaq – Ibn Jurayj – Musa b. Uqba – Nafi – Ibn Umar, volume 6, pages 54-55, number 9988). The Massacre of the Banu Quraiza. A re-examination of a tradition – [Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam (Magnes Press, Hebrew University of Jerusalem – 1986)] by, Professor Meir J. Kister, volume 8, page s 82 -83
 This report is also mentioned in the following hadith books, Musannaf Abd al-Razzaq, volume 6, page 54; Musnad Ibn Hanbal, volume 9, page 181; and Bayhaqi, Dala’il, volume 3, page 183; “The Biography of Muhammad: The Issue of the Sources”, [Copyright 2000], by Marco Scholler, volume 32, page 32
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], page 461
 Kitab Futuh Al-Buldan, By al-Imam abu-l Abbas Ahmad Ibn-Jabir al-Baladhuri, (Translated by Philip Khuri Hitti, PH. D.), [New York – Columbia Univeristy, Longmans, Green & Co., Agents – London: P. S. King & Son, LTD. 1916], volume 1, page 40
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], page 465 – 466
 The Life of Muhammad: Al-Waqidi’s Kitab Al-Maghazi [ Translator: Rizwi Faizer], page 260
 The Massacre of the Banu Quraiza. A re-examination of a tradition – [Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam (Magnes Press, Hebrew University of Jerusalem – 1986)] by, Professor Meir J. Kister, volume 8, page 73
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], page 465 – 466
 (Shafi’I, Umm, al-hukm fi qital al mushrikun wa-mas’alat mal a;-harbi, volume 4, page 239; Sunan al-Bayhaqi, volume 9, page 78). The Massacre of the Banu Quraiza. A re-examination of a tradition – [Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam (Magnes Press, Hebrew University of Jerusalem – 1986)] by, Professor Meir J. Kister, 8, page 67
 The Insaad for Al-Musannaf Abd al-Razzaq’s Hadith as recorded: Abd al-Razzaq – Ibn Jurayj – Musa b. Uqba – Nafi – Ibn Umar.
The Massacre of the Banu Quraiza. A re-examination of a tradition – [Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam (Magnes Press, Hebrew University of Jerusalem – 1986)] by, Professor Meir J. Kister, 8, page 82 – 83
 Kitab Futuh Al-Buldan, By al-Imam abu-l Abbas Ahmad Ibn-Jabir al-Baladhuri, (Translated by Philip Khuri Hitti, PH. D.), [New York – Columbia Univeristy, Longmans, Green & Co., Agents – London: P. S. King & Son, LTD. 1916], volume 1, page 41
 The History of al-Tabari: The Victory of Islam: Muhammad at Medina, [Translator: Michael Fishbein], volume 8, page 32 – 33
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], page 465 – 466
 The Life of Muhammad: Al-Waqidi’s Kitab Al-Maghazi, page 254 – 255
 Al-Shafi’i. al-Umm, n.p. 1321; repr. Kitab al-Sha’b, 1968, volume 4, page 107. The Massacre of the Banu Quraiza. A re-examination of a tradition – [Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam (Magnes Press, Hebrew University of Jerusalem – 1986)] by, Professor Meir J. Kister, 8, page 67
 Fiqh-Us-Seerah – Understanding The Life Of Prophet Muhammad,[International Islamic Federation of student organizations – IIFSO: – Revised second edition, copyright CE 1999/AH 1420] by Muhammad Al-Ghazali, page 346
 The Meanings of the Holy Quran Syed Maududi: chapter 47. Last accessed 31st December 2015, Time 21:01 pm, http://www.englishtafsir.com/Quran/47/index.html#sdfootnote8sym)
 The Prophet Muhammad, The Sultans of Hearts, by Resit Haylamaz volume 2, page 133
 Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah – The Life of Muhammad [Translated by A. Guillaume], page 464
 Muhammad and the Jews: A Re-examination, [New Delhi: Vikas, 1979], by Barakat Ahmad, page 93 – 94
What does Islam say about Rape? [Part 1]
What does Islam say about Rape? [Part 2]