By: Brother Mansoor Mollaggee (Masters in Chemical Engineering, Ex-University Academic, Ex-Editor of Al-Hujjat Newsletter, Currently Businessman and Consultant in Alternative Energy)

This article seeks to clarify misconceptions purposefully and mischievously disseminated to cast calumnies of ambiguity around the REAL killer/s of Imam Husayn (AS), who they were and their modus operandi that exists across the Muslim World to the present-day.

Scenario 1:

Ammar Yaasir (RA), the great Sahabah of Rasulullah (S), was killed in the year 657 AD (36AH), during the Battle of Siffin in what was largely regarded as the first ‘Fitna”, or Muslim Civil War. It was a war sparked by Mu’awiyah, who went to war with Imam ‘Ali (AS) under the banner of ‘avenging the death of ‘‘Uthman’.

Abul Ghadiya Juhani, who had been on the track of ‘Ammar since the days of ‘‘Uthman, came near him during the battle. The cuirass (corselet) of armour of ‘Ammar (RA) had fallen aside from his thigh. The opportunity was availed and a blow was delivered on the thigh of ‘Ammar (RA). Two more men attacked ‘Ammar simultaneously and put an end to his life.

In relation to the death of Ammar (RA), the following Hadith, extracted from Sahih Bukhari, Volume 1, Page 261, Book 8 narrates (Hadith 438): “‘Ikrima: Ibn ‘Abbas said to me and his son ‘Ali, ‘Go to Abu Sai’d and listen to what he narrates. “So we went and found him in a garden looking after it. He picked up his Ridha, wore it and sat down and started narrating till the topic of the construction of the mosque was reached. He said, ‘We carried one adobe at a time while Ammar was carrying two. The Prophet (S) saw him and started removing dust from his body and said, “May Allah be merciful to Ammar. He will be inviting his murderers, the rebellious group to paradise and they will invite him to hell-fire”. Ammar said, ‘I seek refuge with Allah from affliction’.

Mu’awiyah denied any wrongdoing and blamed Imam ‘Ali by saying, “We did not kill Ammar, ‘Ali brought him into the battlefield, so ‘Ali killed ‘Ammar”

Scenario 2:

Approximately 23 years later, on the 10th Muharram, in the year 680AD (61AH), Husayn ibn ‘Ali, the grandson of Rasulullah (S), 72 of his companions and 18 of the offspring of ‘Ali ibn abi Talib (AS) were killed on the Plains of Karbala, Iraq by the forces of Yazid. While Husayn’s (AS) martyrdom is commemorated, his physical opponents and killers clearly identified, cursed and eliminated, the enemies of Ahlul Bayt (AS) and Rasulullah (S) wish to sow confusion, doubt and divert the anger toward those who ‘deserted’ him at the crucial hour, labelling them as the ‘Real villains of Karbalâ’.

As a brief backdrop, from Ramadhan 60AH onward, letters came streaming in from Kufah, inviting Imam Husayn (AS) to lead a revolt against Yazid ibn ‘Mu’awiyah, who had taken over the reins of power two months earlier following the death of his father ‘Mu’awiyah ibn Abu Sufyan.

Imam Husayn (AS) dispatched his emissary, Muslim ibn Aqil to Kufah to investigate whether conditions were indeed ripe for a revolt. On his arrival in Kufa, people streamed in their thousands to pledge their allegiance to Imam Husayn (AS). Once the groundswell reached significant numbers, Muslim sent word to Imam Husayn (AS) to leave Makkah and proceed to Kufah.

Word of these developments also reached the Palace of Yazid and he dispatched Nu’man ibn Bashir and Ubaydullah ibn Ziyad to intercept Muslim, bring him to account, and terrorise the Kufans into obeisance and subjugation. The punishment meted out to Muslim can be seen across Iraq and Syria today in the form of ISIS and its henchmen. Muslim was beheaded and his body dragged through the markets of Kufah to send a message of the fate of those who stood up to Yazid.

The Discourse:

Muslims wanting to defend Yazid’s role in killing Imam Husayn (AS) make excuses and blame the treachery of the Kufans for the death of Imam (AS). Among the most preposterous of these claims, is that the people of Kufa, the Shi’a of ‘Ali, themselves killed Imam Husayn (AS). The same reasoning was used by ‘Mu’awiyah in the case of the killing of Ammar (RA), and is being used to justify the killing of Imam Husayn (AS).

Using this reasoning, it could be said the Holy Prophet (S) brought his Uncle, Sayyidina Hamza (RA), into the battle of Badr and is therefore his killer. Logic and sagacity also furthermore dictates this factual and widely reported scenario – The infidels of Makkah waged war against the Holy Prophet (S). The Holy Qur’an stated that:

إِذْ تُصْعِدُونَ وَلاَ تَلْوُونَ عَلَى أحَدٍ وَالرَّسُولُ يَدْعُوكُمْ فِي أُخْرَاكُمْ فَأَثَابَكُمْ غُمَّاً بِغَمٍّ لِّكَيْلاَ تَحْزَنُواْ عَلَى مَا فَاتَكُمْ وَلاَ مَا أَصَابَكُمْ وَاللّهُ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ

Behold! ye were climbing up the high ground, without even casting a side glance at any one, and the Messenger in your rear was calling you back. There did Allah give you one distress after another by way of requital, to teach you not to grieve for (the booty) that had escaped you and for (the ill) that had befallen you. For Allah is well aware of all that ye do” (3:153).

The Sahabah ran for the booty and deserted the battlefield. SO, because they disobeyed the Holy Prophet (S), Hamza (RA) was killed through an open-side flank, do we blame these Sahabah for the death of Hamza (RA)? The supposed “treachery” of the Sahabah led to the death of Sayyidina Hamza (RA), in much the same way that the treachery of the Kufans led to the slaughter of Imam Husayn (AS).

Using the same logic, the third Caliph, ‘‘Uthman, whilst under siege for over a month sent SOS messages to his supporters. His cousin ‘Mu’awiyah, knowing full-well what was going on, did not dispatch an army to rescue him. This was despite the fact that he had forces at his disposal, powers he would use two years later to fight the Muslims. Is ‘Mu’awiyah bin Abu Sufyan the one who killed ‘‘Uthman? Is ‘‘Uthman not a victim of the treachery of ‘Mu’awiyah rather than those who barricaded his home?

Continuing with this same logic, when our very own Imam Abdullah Haroon was incarcerated by the Apartheid State for 123 days and died due to torture in detention, an official of the Muslim Ulama said he should rot in jail, they would not assist him. This was despite it being within their power to help, why did they not? When he died, was it not the ulamaa that killed Imam Haroon as opposed to the Apartheid State?

Of course this logic is ludicrous, but if one uses the aberrations of history for ones’ own benefit, or mixes Truth with Falsehood, then grey becomes black and white becomes navy, and hopefully over time Truth and Falsehood become mutually interchangeable commodities.

Who killed Imam Husayn (AS)?

Treachery of the Sahabah: If this dumbfounding logic is applied, then surely before blame is laid at the door of the Shi’a of Kufa, the blame should rest with those Sahabah and the Tabi’een who did not even lift a finger, nor bother to support Imam Husayn (AS) in his hour of greatest need, knowing full-well Yazid’s intentions toward him.  

They refused to help him, despite the Holy Prophet (S) saying, “Verily my son, (Husayn) will be killed in a land called Karbala; whoever amongst you is alive at that time must go and help him.” [Tarikh Damishq vol. 14 p 223]. Several hundred Companions were still alive, but they cite confusion between Truth and Falsehood as a reason for not participating.

Not siding with Imam Husayn (AS), of whom the Holy Prophet (S) said he is one of the, ‘Leaders of the Youths of Paradise’, a “Lamp of Guidance’ or an ‘Ark of Salvation’ and ‘Husayn is of me and I am of Husayn’ and so much more? How was it not possible to distinguish between Imam Husayn (AS) using the many clear, known virtues and qualities of his personality and his direct linkage to the House of Prophethood, to not have known where lucidity lies?

How is it possible to have lived through the time of Rasulullah (S), to have seen the greatest living Qur’an in action and not to have been able to distinguish between Truth and Falsehood, nor avoid confusion? So now, is it the people of Kufa, the Tab’ieen or the living Sahabah who killed Imam Husayn (AS)?

The REAL Killer of Imam Husayn (AS)

‘Force Husayn, Abdullah b. Umar and Abdullah b. Zubair to give allegiance and don’t spare them’, said Yazid.

When Al-Waleed bin Utbah bin Abu Sufyan (Governor of Madina) read Yazid’s letter to Marwan (FORMER Governor of Madina – banished by the Holy Prophet (S) and the first and second Caliphs – recalled to act as al-Waleed’s advisor) consulting him in the matter and said: ‘What do you think we should do?’ Marwan replied, ‘Send for them now and ask them to give allegiance and obey us. If they accept, we will let them go but if they reject, you should arrest them and strike off their heads.

Yazid demanded allegiance from Imam Husayn (AS), triggering a chain of events culminating in his (AS) martyrdom. All other excuses have no merit and are shabby attempts to spread confusion, spread fitna, to hide the real culprit – The REAL killer of Imam Husayn (AS) was Yazid, son of ‘Mu’awiyah, son of Abu Sufyan, from the House of Banu Umayyah, sworn enemies of Prophethood and the Religion of Islam.