Intro. Prophet Muhammad PBUH was the last Prophet of Allah. The long

shadow of Muhammad stretches across centuries of strife to the present. Today an estimated 1.4 billion Muslim around the globe follow his teachings- The word of Allah as revealed to Him PBUH. In an American publication entitled The Hundred, author, Doctor Michael Heart has declared the Prophet Muhammad as the most influential Human being of the history. He was born in Arabian Tribe of Quraish where mil training was part and parcel of every Arab citizen yet he did not receive any such training being an Orphan PBUH. Yet the time came when he proved himself a great General. Had Prophet Muhammad PBUH, not succeeded as a commander, the conquest of the Byzantine and Persian empires by Muslim armies might never have occurred. He was a great Gen, in the space of a single decade he fought eight major battles, and planned another thirty eight mil ops where other were in command but operating under his orders and strategic direction. Wounded twice, he also twice experienced having his positions over run by superior forces before he managed to turn the tables on his enemies and rally his men to victory. More than a mil gen and tactician, he was also a mil theorist, while this thing may look new to few of us but the fact remains that theories given by Prophet PBUH are still applicable in modern Warfare. 2. Aim. To discuss the various military thoughts/ strategies used by Prophet Muhammad PBUH during wars. Strategies Adopted by Prophet Muhammad PBUH 3. Although Prophet PBUH was not a practicing military theorist yet by virtue of his wisdom and circumstances, he applied various mil thoughts during early battles of Islam and left behind lessons which are still applicable in modern warfare. These theories are not available in form of some book or articles but one has to go through the life span of Prophet PBUH to find out how PBUH used these theories before, during and after war.

War is cunning.

Surprise and Deception if used artfully could be a powerful

and economical weapon Prophet Muhammad PBUH said on number of occasions that “all War is Cunning” reminding modern analysts of Sun Tzu’s dictum, “all war is deception.” Prophet Muhammad PBUH was not the first one to envision it as a “principle


of war” but he employed it as an imp element while planning military campaigns esp in battle of trench where Queraish were completely surprised when they encounter a obs which they had never seen before and therefore could not negotiate it. Similarly It was 1st of Ramzan once a strong contingent of 10000 Muslim embarked upon a campaign leading toward Makkah, The troops only knew once they were on move, strong security elements were employed ahead of force to avoid detection of move and ensure security. The security and speed being the main characteristics of this campaign, the military history was being written the superb strategy, a total surprise breaking enemy’s will to fight. The Quresh of Makah the strongest of all in Arabic peninsula were taken by utter surprise, which was broken only on the night of 10 Jan 629AD, once all the hillocks sorrowing Makkah were lit by camping lights of Muslims. This was by design as our Commander had to leave a military lesson for us about use of surprise and deception as a force multiplier. Troops were ordered to disperse in smaller groups of 2 – 4 and light their own fire, to simulate an army of much greater in strength then it actual was , so that no one could dare resist the next morning the D Day . The history bears the testimony to the fact that Makkah fell without least resistance and bloodshed. The wining factor was that cunningness which is commonly known as Surprise and Deception. 5. Importance of Intelligence. Prophet Muhammad had true understanding of the importance of intelligence. In the beginning Muslims operations suffered from a lack of tactical intelligence. Max Muslims were mostly townspeople with no experience in desert travel. On some of the early operations Prophet PBUH had to hire bedouin guides. However, Muslims intelligence service became more organized and sophisticated, using agents-in-place, commercial spies, debriefing of prisoners, combat patrols and reconnaissance in force as methods of intelligence collection. Prophet often asked the Muslims to conduct advance reconnaissance of the battlefields upon which he fought. In most cases intelligence service provided him with sufficient information as to the enemy’s location and intentions in advance of any military engagement. However exact knowledge of how the intelligence service was organized or where it was located is not aval. Probably Suffah were part of int org.



Concept of National Army.






composition of Arab armies from a collection of clans, tribes, and blood kin loyal only to themselves into a national army loyal to a national social entity, the ummah. The ummah was not a nation or a state in the modern sense, but a body of religious believers under the unified command and governance of Muhammad. The ummah transcended the clans and tribes and permitted Muhammad to forge a common identity, national in scope, among the Arabs for the first time. It was leadership of this national entity that Muhammad claimed, not of any clan or tribe. 8. Concept of Combined Arms. Another achievement of Prophet PBUH was

the conversion of national army to unify the two traditional combat arms of infantry and cavalry into a genuine combined arms force. Bedouins and town dwellers had historically viewed one another with suspicion. Arab infantry had traditionally been drawn from the people living in the towns, settlements, and oases of Arabia. Arab cavalry was traditionally drawn from bedouin clans, whose nomadic warriors excelled at speedy raids, surprise attacks, and elusive retreats, skills honed to a fine edge over generations of raiding. These two different types of combatants possessed only limited experience in fighting alongside one another. Bound by clan loyalties and living in settlements, Arab infantry was steadfast and cohesive and could usually be relied upon to hold its ground, especially in the defense. Arab cavalry, on the other hand, was unreliable in a battle against infantry, often breaking off the fight to keep their precious mounts from being hurt or make off with whatever booty they had seized. Bedouin cavalry was, however, proficient at reconnaissance, surprise attack, protecting the flanks, and pursuing ill-disciplined infantry. Muhammad was the first Arab commander to successfully join both combat arms into a national army and use them in concert in battle. Thanks to the larger religious community of believers, the ummah, he could combine the two primary elements of traditional Arab society, town dwellers and bedouin tribes, into a single Arab national identity. That change was actually preceded by a shift in the social composition of Arab society. 9. Importance of Logistics. Prophet Muhammad PBUH had been an organizer of caravans for twenty-five years, and he showed the caravaner’s concern for logistics and planning. His expertise in those areas permitted him to project force and conduct


military operations over long distances across inhospitable terrain. In 630 on the eve of Battle of Tabuk, he led Muslim army of twenty to thirty thousand men on a 250-mile march across the desert from Medina to Tabuk lasting eighteen to twenty days during the hottest season of the year. By traditional Arab standards, that trek was nothing short of astounding. 10. Code of Restraint. Prophet PBUH proved that he was the Prophet of Mercy. Since the actual goal of Prophet Muhammad in battles was not to destroy the enemy troops, he never attempted to do so. He always attached great importance to peace. The Treaty of Hudaybiyah was a great victory accomplished during his lifetime. The Prophet conquered Mecca without shedding even one drop of blood. If he had wished to do so, he could have put the people of Mecca to the sword; however, he chose not to, as he was the Prophet of Mercy. In order to prevent the people of Mecca from making the mistake of attacking the Islamic army he ensured that they had accepted defeat in advance and sent the following information to them: a. b. c. He who takes shelter in the Kaaba is secure, Whoever takes shelter in Abu Sufyan’s house is secure, Whoever locks the door of his house and stays in his own house will not be touched, he will be secure.” 11. Winning Heart and minds. The essence of Islam is accord, that is, peace.

War is an exceptional situation.

Prophet discouraged the believers from seeking war

while at the same time stating that they should have faith in success if war is inevitable. Treaty of Hudabiya and conquest of Makkah without bloodshed were few examples of winning hearts and minds of people. 12. Use of Force for Attainment of Political Aims. Arab warfare prior to

Prophet Muhammad’s reforms involved clans and tribes fighting for honor or loot. Arab warfare had been tactical warfare, nothing more. There was no sense of strategic war in which long-term, grand strategic objectives were sought and toward which the tactical application of force was directed. Prophet was the first to introduce to the Arabs the


notion of war for strategic goals. He was always Clausewitzian in his view that the use of force was a tactical means to the achievement of larger strategic objectives. Had Muhammad not introduced this new way of thinking to Arab warfare, the use of later Arab armies to forge a world empire would not only have been impossible, it would have been unthinkable. Various texts also mention Muslims use of catapults (manjaniq) and movable covered cars (dabbabah) in siege warfare. Most likely these siege devices were acquired in Yemen, where Persian garrisons had been located on and off over the centuries. Muhammad seems to have been the first Arab commander to use them in the north. Where once Arab warfare had been a completely tactical affair, Prophet Muhammad’s introduction of strategic war permitted the use of tactics in the proper manner, as a means to greater strategic ends. War, after all, is never an end in itself. It is, as Clausewitz reminds us, always a method, never a goal. 13. People’s War. People’s war also known as “Protracted People’s War” is a

mil political strategy of having support of the population. Modern analysts believe Mao Zedong who coined this strategy. However Prophet Muhammad PBUH was probably the first commander in history to understand and implement the doctrine. He said that God had commandeered that all Muslims had a responsibility to fight for the faith. All Muslims had an obligation for military service in defense of the faith and the ummah. It is essential to understand that the attraction of the Islamic ideology more than anything else produced the manpower that permitted Muhammad’s PBUH small revolutionary cadre to evolve into a conventional armed force capable of large-scale engagements. 14. Use of Force for Political Goal. Prophet Muhammad was a combination of Karl von Clausewitz and Niccole Machiavelli, as regards his thinking and application of force was concerned for he always employed force in the service of political goals. An astute grand strategist, he used non military methods (alliance building, religious appeals and mercy) to strengthen his long-term position, sometimes even at the expense of shortterm military considerations. 15. Concept of National Army. Prophet PBUH transformed the social composition of Arab armies from a collection of clans, tribes, and blood kin loyal only to themselves into a national army loyal to a national social entity, the ummah. The


ummah was not a nation

or a state in the modern sense, but a body of religious

believers under the unified command and governance of Muhammad. The ummah transcended the clans and tribes and permitted Muhammad to forge a common identity, national in scope, among the Arabs for the first time. It was leadership of this national entity that Muhammad claimed, not of any clan or tribe. 16. Welfare of Tps. Muslim army demonstrated a higher degree of military

motivation than traditional Arab armies. Being a good warrior had always been at the center of Arab values, but Prophet enhanced the warrior’s status. Muslim soldiers were always guaranteed a share in the booty. It became a common saying among Muslims that “the soldier is not only the noblest and most pleasing profession in the sight of Allah, but also the most profitable.” Muhammad’s soldiers were usually paid better than Persian or Byzantine soldiers. Concl 17. Prophet’s personality have numerous dimensions however we have discussed

His personality as a mil strategist. Lessons which He had left and theories he devised are still applicable today.

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