Umar and Khalid bin Waleed
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
I really need some specific history on this...
I have a question regarding the rule of Hazrat Omar...As I was reading I came through something interesting. During the conquest of Iraq, was Hazrat Khalid bin Al-Waleed removed from his duty because by gaining too much popularity in the muslim world he had become too strong a political figure...I don`t want to ask more because I feel like I would be being disrespecful to Hazarat Omar and, also, that I might really be having my facts wrong.
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In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
The personality, character, piety, and the sense of justice of Hadrat Umar (r.a.) was such that he never ever allowed anyone, regardless of their personality or rank, to portray the slightest bit of pride, or arrogance, or nepotism, etc. The higher the official rank in the government of Hadrat Umar (r.a.), the more he held them accountable for their deeds done in their official capacity! If any amongst the officers in Hadrat Umars (r.a.) government took even an iota of liberty within their position, he would severely reprimand them for their actions. He took his role as the Ameer-ul-Mumineen extremely piously, and expected every officer in his government to have the same amount of piety and God-consiousness in every thing they did.
Hadrat Khalid bin Al-Waleed (r.a.) was a commander-par-excellence of the muslim army, and was highly respected and known far and wide for his strategy and bravery in battle. It has been recorded in history that Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) never ever lost a battle under his command: such was his supremacy in the stratagems of war.
It is indeed true and a historical fact that Hadrat Umar (r.a.) removed Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) as the commander of the muslim army during his reign as Khalifah, and demoted him to a simple soldier in the muslim army. It is also recorded that at his demotion, Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) stated publicly that he was committed to his allegiance to the Ameer-ul-Mumineen and whether he was a commander or a simple soldier, he considered it an ultimate honor to be able to fight in the Noble Cause of Allah Subhanah and Islam.
To say that the reason for Hadrat Khalids (r.a.) removal from being a commander was because he had become too strong of a political figure, or to even imply that Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) was ever a political threat to Hadrat Umar (r.a.) would be absolutely absurd and inconceivable for such pious and God-fearing companions of the Prophet (saws). It is absolutely inconceivable that a person of the stature of Hadrat Umar (r.a.) would make such a move for personal reasons or political fears. Besides Hadrat Umar (r.a.) was related to Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) through his mothers family who was from the Banu Makhzum; thus to even imply that there was any personal enmity or threat between these two noble soldiers of Allah Subhanah is absolutely out of the question.
Also Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) was never in contention for the leadership of the believers, especially when stalwarts from amongst the Ashara-Mubashereen (The Ten who were given the Good News of Paradise) like Hadrat Uthman (r.a.), Hadrat Ali (r.a.), Hadrat Talha (r.a.), Hadrat Zubair (r.a.), Hadrat Abdur-Rahmaan bin Auf (r.a.), etc., were alive; and neither did Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) have any political ambitions whatsoever.
Islam had spread to almost a third of the then known world during Hadrat Umars (r.a.) reign, but even then Hadrat Umar (r.a.) used to live an extremely simple and humble life and expected all the officers in his government to do the same. With the riches that followed the rapid expansion of Islam, Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) had his own style and personality in his spending which Hadrat Umar (r.a.) did not think was exemplary of the muslim commander and one which he did not approve. It is not to say or even imply that Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) would abuse his position as the commander of the muslim army, but just that his spending and lifestyle seemed too lavish and extravagant for Hadrat Umar (r.a.) liking.
It is also reported that there was a general feeling amongst the believers that whenever Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) commanded the muslim army, victory would be theirs. Hadrat Umar (r.a.) absolutely did not approve of this sort of belief or feeling, for victory in truth is from none except Allah Subhanah.
Allah Alone Knows best the exact conditions which prompted Hadrat Umar (r.a.) to demote Hadrat Khalid (r.a.) from being the commander of the muslim army, but one thing can be said with absolute conviction: there was never any personal enmity or grudge or fear, political or otherwise, between these two pious and noble companions of the Messenger of Allah (saws).
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your Brother in Islam,