That is the grossest lie and only Muslim can claim so, because lying to mislead the kafirs in the interest of Islam is a religiously-sanctioned doctrine in Islam, called Taqiyya, for which they will be richly rewarded by Allah.
Slavery and Islam
It has been mentioned in the previous article, The True Color of Humanitarian Muhammad, that the Bengali Muslim author Kazi Masum Akhtar wrote in his essay, “Manabatabadi Hajrat Muhammad (S)” (i.e. Humanitarian Hajrat Muhammad):“Abolition of slavery was one of his declared policy. But his most important step was to declare jihad for liberating the women by breaking the stubborn wall of gender apartheid of the dark middle ages.”
Mr. Akhtar tries to impress upon his readers that Muhammad abolished slavery. In reality, Muhammad approved slavery as Allah considered slavery as a social and lawful institution. Justifying slavery Allah says in the Koran: “Prophet, We have made lawful to you the wives to whom you have granted dowries and the slave-girls whom God has given you as booty." (33:50) This verse clearly mentions that, for a Muslim, taking slaves, or more pointedly sex-slaves, in war is a God-given right; and it certainly impossible for Muhammad to disobey Allah’s will.
In fact is:
"Islam institutionalized slavery. Muhammad began to take slaves after he moved to Medina, and had power. Slaves were usually taken in raids on nearby (non-Muslim) Arab tribes, or war, either through offensive or defensive actions. Islam allows the taking of slaves as "booty", or reward for fighting. This has led to numerous "jihads" by Muslim states and tribes to attack other non-Muslim groups and obtain slaves. Islamic jurisprudence laid down regulations for the proper treatment of slaves. However, abuses have occurred throughout history”, says Silas (real name unknown). He also says, “From the days that Muhammad drew his sword to rob and conquer non-Muslims to this very day, Muslims have been taking non-Muslims, and even other black Muslims, as slaves.”[i]
According to scholar says K S Lal:
“Slaves were mainly prisoners of war, but destitutes, debtors and convicted criminals were also sometimes drafted into slavery and commandeered for specific assignments. …In ancient Egypt, as elsewhere, slaves supplied the labour force and were used in any capacity and for any type of work. An almost fabulous number of slaves were employed for the building the Pyramids of Egypt dating from 3000 B.C. to 2300 B.C. According to Herodotus,(the ancient Greek historian) the Great Pyramid (of Cheops) took 100,000 men for ten years to make a causeway 3000 feet long in order to facilitate the transport of stone from the quarries, and the same number of men for twenty years more to complete the pyramid itself. Modern research considers these figures to be exaggerated as Herodotus inquired from people during his journeys and depended on hearsay. What is important in this regard is that the nine pyramids existing at present, are supposed to have been built by respective kings as tombs and memorials of themselves by a very substantial labour force. Slaves in Egypt were also employed on various other jobs."[ii]
“Among the Greeks also slavery was a rooted institution. In two city states or poleis (singular polis means a city plus its environment) of Athens and Sparta slavery prevailed as also in other lesser known city states. Ancient Greek society was divided into three classes. …In Rome also slavery was extensively prevalent. There the great landed estates were accumulated in a few hands and the cultivation of these lands was done mostly by swarms of slaves leaving war as the chief occupation of honour for the elitist citizens. …The Prophet (Muhammad) himself had made slaves in war and peace. …The Islamised Arabs started taking pride in keeping male and female slaves.”
Historically, the major juristic schools of Islam traditionally have accepted slavery as religiously sanctioned institution. The Islamic prophet Muhammad and many of his companions bought, sold, freed, and captured slaves. It has been mentioned in the previous article that after defeating Banu Koraiza Jews, a community of some 2000 heads in Medina, Muhammad had enslaved the 1200 women and children and distributed amongsy Muslims after massacring about 800 of their adult men. The Prophet took one-fifth of them as his own share of the booty. He distributed some of them among his closest followers and sent the rest to the slave-market at Nejd, to be sold as slaves.
On one occasion, Muhammad took a male-slave to his daughter Fatema’s house to present the slave to her. At that moment, Fatema was not properly dressed and she became busy to cover herself with her veil. But Muhammad told her that though he was a male, but a slave and it was not necessary for her to cover herself in before a slave. After the battle of Badr, Muslims could capture many of the defeated Koreish army. All of them were turned into slaves and freed in exchange of fat ransom. All these incidents reflect that, Muhammad accepted slavery as an established social custom and he neither said word against slavery and nor he took any step to stop this inhuman practice.
“In Islamic law the topic of slavery is covered at great length. The Qur'an (the holy book) and the hadith (the sayings of Muhammad) see slavery as an exceptional condition that can be entered into under certain limited circumstances. Only children of slaves or non-Muslim prisoners of war could become slaves, never a freeborn Muslim. They also consider manumission of a slave to be one of many meritorious deeds available for the expiation of sins. According to Sharia, slaves are considered human beings and possessed of some rights on the basis of their humanity. In addition, a Muslim slave is equal to a Muslim freeman in religious issues and superior to the free non-Muslim.”
“Muslims were enslaving black Africans long before any slave ships sailed for the New World. Muslims were taking and making slaves all over the lands they had conquered. Later, when slave ships were loaded with black slaves, often, a Muslim slave broker had the human cargo all ready to go. American slavers rarely had to go into inland to capture slaves, they were already waiting there, courtesy of some Muslim ruler, and/or slave broker! In many cases, if the black slaves were not sent to the New World, they were sent to the Mideast to be enslaved by Arabs, or kept by other black Muslims as slaves.” [ref. 1]
Koran approves slavery
From the following verses of the Koran, it becomes evident that Allah approves slavery as a standard social practice:
“The believers truly believe in the Day of Judgement and dread the punishment of their Lord, for none is secure from the punishment of their Lord, and restrain their carnal desire, save with their wives and slave-girls, for these are lawful to them.” (70:26-30) Also “Marry of the women, who seem good to you, two, three or four of them. But if you fear that you cannot maintain equality -among them, marry one only or any slave-girls you may own.” (4: 3) [The term “slave-girls” in the above two verses stands for women purchased in lieu of money, as any other commodity of commerce; and also non Moslem women captured as captives by the Muslims in a battle.]
This verse tells how Muslim males are allowed to have sexual relations with their wives and slave-girls. Implicit in this is that Muslim males can have slave-concubines. The verse (23.5) also tells an almost similar story. Mariyah and her sister Sirin were slave-girls given as gifts to Muhammad by Egyptian governor. Muhammad gave Sirin to Hasan Thabit, the poet. Ibn Sa'd says that Muhammad "liked Mariyah, who was of white complexion, with curly hair and pretty." Ibn Sa'd's "Tabaqat", gives a clear description of Muhammad having sexual relations with Mariyah, his Coptic slave.
Elsewhere the Quran says: “You are forbidden to take in marriage married women, except those(captives) whom you own as slaves (your right hands possess). Such is the decree of Allah.” (4: 24) [The term “married women” in this verse stands for believing married women. As for the non-believing women, whether married or un-married, the Muslims can do anything to them; in fact Muslims have a divine right to even kill those disbelieving women, and as such to enjoy them sexually , even by force, is a much less punishment to them— it is rather a mercy.]
A subset of other verses of Allah that support slavery are:
- “If any of you cannot afford to marry a free believing woman, let him marry a slave-girl who is a believer.” (4:25) “Show kindness to the slaves, whom you own.” (4:36)
- “He (a believer) that accidentally kills a believer must free one Muslim slave.” (4:92)
- “O Prophet! Lo! We have made lawful unto thee thy wives unto whom thou hast paid their dowries, and those whom thy right hand possesseth of those whom Allah hath given thee as spoils of war. We well know the duties We have imposed on the faithful concerning their wives and those whom they own as slave-girls.” (33:50) [The spoil of war means women captured by them as booty. A Captive woman, as per Islamic law, automatically becomes a slave. This verse clearly shows that Muslims believe that taking slaves in war was a God-given right. These slaves were considered 'booty' or the spoils of war. As the saying goes, “to the victors go the spoils.”
- “It shall be unlawful for you (Muhammad) to take more wives or to change your present wives for other women, though their beauty pleases you, except where slave-girls are concerned.” (33:52)
The Quran also instructs Muslims not to force their female slaves into prostitution (24:34), and even allows Muslims to marry slaves if they so desire, and to free them at times as a penalty for crime or sin (4:92, 5:89, 58:3) and even allows slaves to buy their liberty, if they meet certain of their master's conditions (24:33). “While I think it's nice to allow a slave to obtain his freedom, (at his master's discretion) it is tragic that Islam allows them to be enslaved in the first place. That's like robbing a bank and giving some of the money back to the bank, and thinking you did the right thing,” says author Silas. Silashas quoted several hadiths Bukhari and others in his article to show that the hadiths also support slavery. (ref. 1)
Muhammad supported and patronized slavery
Kazi Masum Akhtar claims that Muhammad abolished slavery. But his deeds bear witness that he supported and patronized slavery for the benefit of Islam; more importantly, for his personal benefits. In the 82 raids and wars on non-Muslim settlements, which Muhammad had organized and/or led in his 10-year-stay in Medina, his main aim was to obtain spoils or war-booty. Men and women captured in such raids were also considered war-booty and were kept or sold as slaves. The young and charming girls were used as sex-slaves by Muhammad and his companions. Muhammad used to take one-fifth of the booty as holy khoom and he used to pick the most charming girls in the lot as his personal sex-slave, with whom he usually had sex with on the same night.
In one instance, the Muslims attacked the Banu Mustaliq, and took the women and children slaves after slaughtering their men. The female-slaves were distributed amongst his Muslim soldiers. Being away from home for long, the soldiers were craving for sex and wanted to have sex with the female captives. But they were also worried that if they fell pregnant from the sex-act, their market-value will drop. So, they went to Muhammad and asked if they could do coitus interruptus (i.e. release the semen outside). He advised them to have sex with the slaves, but not to practice coitus interruptus. In effect, Muhammad okayed the rape of the female prisoners. Muhammad took Juwareya, the prettiest young captive in the lot and forced her to have sex with him on the same night.
Muhammad used to barter his slaves, obtained as war booty, in exchange of horses and other weapons for launching jihad or organizing raids against non-Muslim Arab settlements for capturing more.
After Muhammad's death, his cousin Jubair became filthy rich and left 1000 slaves behind when he died.
Above discussion makes it crystal-clear that neither Muhammad did, nor Islam does, take any step to abolish slavery. On the contrary, Muhammad engaged in slavery in his founding years of Islam. Moreover, Muhammad himself used the young and pretty female-captives Rihana (of Banu Koreiza), Juweria (of Banu Mustaliq), Safiya (of Banu Nadir, Khaybar) and others as sex-slaves; indeed, he raped them on the same night he had massacred all their husbands and other male family members. So the idea of Muhammad abolishing slavery cannot arise; any allusions to such a possibility are pure lies.
And following the legacy of Muhammad, Arab Muslims carried out lucrative slave-trade from 8th century to 19th century, across the world. As a matter of fact, slave-trade continued in Sudan till 2005. The Islamist government in Sudan used the state machinery to organize raids in predominantly Christian southern Sudan to capture unarmed common villagers and transport them as slaves to the Arab and Gulf countries. This oppression on the people of southern Sudan went on up to 2005.
So Kazi Masum Akhtar's claim that Muhammad abolished slavery is not supported by facts; instead Muhammad did exactly the opposite vis-à-vis slavery. But Mr. Akhtar has not committed any offence by telling such blatant lies, because telling such lies to deceive infidels in the interested of Islam is a religiously sanctioned doctrine in Islam, called taqiyyah, and he will be rewarded by Allah.