Islamic Studies Paper 2, Private Candidates 2019

Question 2:

Give an account of the Battle of Khandaq.



The question was misinterpreted by most of the candidates. They gave the account of the battle of Uhud instead of Khandaq. Majority of those who attempted it got the answer wrongly. The question requested the candidates to give the historical background of the battle of Khandaq, to explain when, where and how the battle was fought. thus:

The battle of Khandaq was the third encounter between the Quraysh and the Muslim after the Hijrah. (Introduction)

i. The battle of Khandaq was fought in 627 C.E.

ii. The Quraysh were not happy about the outcome of the battle of Uhud.

iii. As a result, they formed an alliance with the Jewish tribe of Banū Nadīr and other tribes.

iv. The alliance produced an army of about ten thousand men to accomplish their mission.

v. The Jews promised the Quraysh to cause confusion among the Muslims in Madinah.

vi. The army marched on Madinah to destroy the Islamic State.

vii. On hearing the Quraysh plan, the Prophet (S.A.W.) called a meeting to discuss the issue.

viii. During the meeting, Salmān b. Fārisī, a companion of the Prophet (S.A.W.) advised that a ditch be dug around the city of Madinah.

ix. The advice was accepted and the work started in earnest.

x. The ditch was 15 feet wide and 15 feet deep.

xi. The Muslims also raised an army of 3,000 men to defend the city.

xii. The Jewish of Banū Qurayza broke their agreement with the Prophet (S.A.W.) and supported the Makkans.

xiii. The Quraysh were surprised about the war strategy employed by the Muslims.

xiv. The Quraysh remained stuck outside Madinah for three weeks without being able to cross the ditch.

xv. All their attempts to cross the ditch failed.

xvi. Thereafter, the winter rain and violent storm came to make life unbearable for the Quraysh.

xvii. As such, they left the scene in disappointment and defeated.

xviii. Since this defeat the Quraysh could not raise any army to attack the Muslims in Madinah