Islam & African Slave Trade:-        

         Muhammadan Islam institutionalized slavery.  Muhammad began to take many more slaves after he moved to Madina, and began what can only be described as the first  

                       Organized Crime Syndicate 

in history whose base and centre of operations was the Madina. Slaves were usually taken in raids on his own Quraysh tribe, on Judaized Christian Arabs as well as any other Arabian tribe that he chose as a victim of his plunder. 

       In fact, the Quran allows the taking of slaves as 'booty', or 'reward' for wars of aggression against any and all UNBELIEVERS (most of the human population). This has led to an enormous number of so called 'Holy Wars' called 'Jihad'. There is and was absolutely nothing 'holy' about these wars which are primarily to plunder, slaughter, rape, subjugate and rob other human beings of their wealth and produce. 

       Muhammadan Muslim states and tribes attack other non-Muslim groups to achieve these objectives. Islamic jurisprudence laid down regulations for the proper treatment of slaves.  However, incredible and heinous abuses have occurred throughout the history of Islam.


       While much has been written concerning the Trans-Atlantic slave trade, surprisingly little attention has been given to the Islamic slave trade across the Sahara, the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean.  While the European involvement in the Trans Atlantic slave trade to the Americas lasted for just over three centuries, the Arab involvement in the slave trade has lasted fourteen centuries, and in some parts of the Muslim world is still continuing to this day.


       A comparison of the Islamic slave trade to the American slave trade reveals some interesting contrasts.  While two out of every three slaves shipped across the Atlantic were men, the proportions were reversed in the Islamic slave trade.  Two women for every man were enslaved by the Muslims.

       While the mortality rate for slaves being transported across the Atlantic was as high as 10%, the percentage of slaves dying in transit in the Trans Sahara and East African slave trade was between 80 and 90%.

       While almost all the slaves shipped across the Atlantic were for agricultural work, most of the slaves destined for the Muslim Middle East were for sexual exploitation as concubines, in harems, and for military service. 

       While many children were born to slaves in the Americas, and millions of their descendants are citizens in Brazil and the USA to this day, very few descendants of the slaves that ended up in the Middle East survive. 

       While most slaves who went to the Americas could marry and have families, most of the male slaves destined for the Middle East were castrated, and most of the children born to the women were killed at birth.

       It is estimated that possibly as many as 11 million Africans were transported across the Atlantic (95% of which went to South and Central America, mainly to Portuguese, Spanish and French possessions.  Only 5% of the slaves went to the United States). 

African Slaves

       However, at least 28 million Africans were enslaved in the Muslim Middle East.  Since at least 80% of those captured by Muslim slave traders were calculated to have died before reaching the slave markets, it is believed that the death toll from  
1400 years of Muslim slave raids into Africa could have been over 112 million.  When added to the number of those sold in the slave markets, the total number of African victims of the Trans Saharan and East African slave trade could be significantly higher than 140 million people. 


       While Christian Reformers spearheaded the anti-slavery abolitionist movements in Europe and North America, and Great Britain mobilised her Navy, throughout most of the 19th Century, to intercept slave ships and set the captives free, there was no opposition whatsoever to slavery within the Muslim world. 

       Even after Britain outlawed the slave trade in 1807 and Europe abolished the slave trade in 1815, Muslim slave traders enslaved a further 2 million Africans.  This, despite vigorous British Naval activity and military intervention to limit the Islamic slave trade.  

       By some calculations, the number of victims of the 14 centuries of Islamic slave trade could exceed 180 million.

       Nearly 100 years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation in America, and 130 years after all slaves within the British Empire were set free by parliamentary decree, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, in 1962, and Mauritania in 1980, begrudgingly removed legalised slavery from their statute books.  And this only after international pressure was brought to bear.  Today numerous international organisations document that slavery still continues in some Muslim countries. 


       The birth of Islam and its conquests, brought about the birth of INSTITUTIONALIZED, SYSTEMATIZED and RELIGIOUSLY SANCTIONED SLAVE TRADE, on a MASSIVE & GLOBAL SCALE.

         As Ronald Segal in "Islam's Black Slaves" documents:  "When Islam conquered the Persian Sassanid Empire and much of the Byzantine Empire, including Syria and Egypt, in the 7th Century, it acquired immense quantities of gold from stripping churches and monasteries ... either directly or by taxes, payable in gold, imposed on the clergy.... looting gold from tombs, the state encouraged the search and sanctioned the seizure, in return for a 
fifth (khums) of the finds."

         Segal notes:  "Female slaves were required in considerable numbers as musicians, singers and dancers....many more were bought for domestic workers....and many were in demand as concubines (RAPE).  The harems of rulers could be enormous.  The harem of Abdal Rahman III (912 - 961) in Cordoba contained over 6000 concubines. The one in the Fatimid Palace in Cairo had twice as many."

         The death toll from 14 centuries of the Islamic slave trade in Africa is estimated at over 140 million.

       Islam's Black Slaves also reveals that the castration of male slaves was common place.  "The Calipha in Baghdad at the beginning of the 10th Century had 7000 black eunuchs and 4000 white eunuchs in his palace." 

       It was noted that there were widespread "homosexual relations" as well.  Islam's Black Slaves notes that Islamic teachers throughout the centuries consistently defended slavery:  "For there must be masters and slaves." 

       Others noted that blacks "lack self-control and steadiness of mind and they are overcome by fickleness, foolishness and ignorance.  Such are the blacks who live in the extremity of the land of Ethiopia, the Nubians, Zanj and the like."

       Ibn Khaldun (1332 - 1406) the pre-eminent Islamic medieval historian and social thinker wrote:  "The Negro nations are as a rule submissive to slavery, because they have attributes that are quite similar to dumb animals."

       By the Middle Ages, the Arabic word "abd" was in general use to denote a black slave while the word "mamluk" referred to a white slave.  

       It is not common knowledge that the Arabic word 'ABD' is synonymous with the meaning of SLAVE; that is, in the language of the Arabs, 


       Even as late as the 19th Century, it was noted that in Mecca "there are few families that do not keep slaves; they all keep mistresses in common with their lawful wives."

       It should be noted also, that black slaves were castrated "based on the assumption that the blacks had an ungovernable sexual appetite."

       When the Fatimids came to power, they slaughtered all the tens of thousands of black military slaves and raised an entirely new slave army.  Some of these slaves were conscripted into the army at age ten.  From Persia to Egypt to Morocco, slave armies from 30,000 to up to 250,000 became common-place. 

       Even Ronald Segal, who is most sympathetic to Islam and clearly prejudiced against Christianity, admits that well over 30 million black Africans would have died at the hands of Muslim slave traders or ended up in Islamic slavery. 

       The Islamic slave trade took place across the Sahara Desert, from the coast of the Red Sea, and from East Africa across the Indian Ocean.  The Trans Sahara trade was conducted along six major slave routes.  

       Just in the 19th Century, for which we have more accurate records, 1.2 million slaves were brought across the Sahara into the Middle East, 450,000 down the Red Sea and 442,000 from East African coastal ports.  That is a total of 2 million black slaves - just in the 1800's.  At least 8 million more were calculated to have died before reaching the Muslim slave markets. 

       Islam's Black Slaves records:  "In the 1570's, a Frenchman visiting Egypt found many thousands of blacks on sale in Cairo on market days.  In 1665 Father Antonios Gonzalis, a Spanish/Belgian traveller, reported 800 - 1000 slaves on sale in the Cairo market on a single day.  In 1796, a British traveller reported a caravan of 5000 slaves departing from Darfur.  

       In 1838, it was estimated that 10,000 to 12,000 slaves were arriving in Cairo each year." Just in the Arabic plantations off the East Coast of Africa, on the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba, there were 769,000 black slaves.

Slave Markets-

       The slave market in Zanzibar sold an average of 300 slaves every day.

       In the 19th Century, the East African black slave trade included 347, 000 slaves shipped to Arabia, Persia and India;  95, 000 slaves were shipped to the Arab plantations in the Mascareme Islands.

       Segal notes "The high death rate and low birth rate among black slaves in the Middle East and the astonishingly low birth rate amongst black slave women" in North Africa and the Middle East.  "Islamic civilization lagged increasingly behind the West in protecting public health.  

       The arithmetic of the Islamic black slave trade must also not ignore the lives of those men, women and children taken or lost during the procurement, storage and transportation.

       The sale of a single captive for slavery might represent a loss of ten in the population  from defenders killed in attacks on villages, the deaths of women and children from related famine and the loss of children, the old and the sick, unable to keep up with their captors or killed along the way in hostile encounters, or dying of sheer misery."

       One British explorer encountered over 100 human skeletons from a slave caravan en route for Tripoli.

       The explorer, Heinrich Barth, recorded that a slave caravan lost 40 slaves in the course of a single night at Benghazi.

       The British explorer, Richard Lander, came across a group of 30 slaves in West Africa, all of them stricken with smallpox, all bound neck to neck with twisted strips of bullock hide. 

       One caravan with 3000 proceeding from the coast in East Africa, lost two thirds of its number from starvation, disease and murder.

         In the Nubian desert, one slave caravan of 2000 slaves literally vanished as every slave died.


       In 1818, Captain Lyon of the Royal Navy reported that the Al-Mukani in Tripoli "waged war on all its defenceless neighbours and annually carried off 4000 to 5000 slaves, a piteous spectacle!  These poor oppressed beings were, many of them, so exhausted as to be scarcely able to walk, their legs and feet were much swelled, and by their enormous size formed a striking contrast with their emaciated bodies.  They were all borne down with loads of firewood, and even poor little children, worn to skeletons by fatigue and hardships, were obliged to bear their burden, while many of their inhuman masters with dreadful whip suspended from their waist All the traders speak of slaves as farmers do of cattle. 

       The defenceless state of the Negro kingdoms to the southward are temptations too strong to be resisted, a force is therefore annually sent to pillage these defenceless people, to carry them off as slaves, burn their towns, kill the aged and infants, destroy their crops and inflict on them every possible misery. 

       Their slavery is for an unlimited time. None of their owners ever moved without their whips - which were in constant use. Drinking too much water, bringing too little wood or falling asleep before the cooking was finished, were considered nearly capital crimes, and it was in vain for these poor creatures to plead the excuse of being tired.  Nothing could withhold the application of the whip.  No slaves dared to be ill or unable to walk, but when the poor sufferer dies, the master suspects that there must have been something 'wrong inside' and regrets not having liberally applied their usual remedy of burning the belly with a red-hot iron."

Slave Traders-

       Arab slave traders along the Ruvuma River, East Africa, 1866, axe a straggler.
Records for Morocco in 1876 show that market prices for slaves varied from £10 ($48) to £30 ($140).  Female slaves comprised the vast majority of sales with "attractive virgins" fetching between £40 to £80 ($192 - $386).  It was reported that "a considerable majority of the slaves crossing the Sahara were destined to become concubines in North Africa, the Middle East and occasionally even further afield."


       Segal also observed that:  "White slaves from Christian Spain, Central and Eastern Europe" were also shipped into the Middle East and served in the "palaces of rulers and the establishments of the rich." 

       Muslim slave raiders kidnapped women from Europe for harems in the Middle East.
Historian Robert Davis in his book "Christian Slaves, Muslim Masters - White Slavery In the Mediterranean, the Barbary Coast and Italy", estimates that North African Muslim pirates abducted and enslaved more than 1 million Europeans between 1530 and 1780.  These white Christians were seized in a series of raids which depopulated coastal towns from Sicily to Cornwall.  

       Thousands of white Christians in coastal areas were seized every year to work as galley slaves, labourers and concubines for Muslim slave masters in what is today Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria and Libya.  Villages and towns on the coast of Italy, Spain, Portugal and France were the hardest hit, but the Muslim slave raiders also seized people as far afield as Britain, Ireland and Iceland.  They even captured 130 American seamen from ships they boarded in the Atlantic between 1785 and 1793. 

       According to one report, 7,000 English people were abducted between 1622 to 1644, many of them ship crews and passengers.  But the Corsairs also landed on unguarded beaches, often at night, to snatch the unwary.  Almost all the inhabitants of the village of Baltimore, in Ireland, were captured in 1631, and there were other raids in Devon and Cornwall.  

       Many of these white, Christian slaves were put to work in quarries, building sites and galleys and endured malnutrition, disease and mistreatment at the hands of their Muslim slave masters.  Many of them were used for public works such as building harbours.

       Female captives were sexually abused in palace harems and others were held as hostages and bargained for ransom.  "The most unlucky ended up stuck and forgotten out in the desert, in some sleepy town such as Suez, or in Turkish Sultanate galleys, where some slaves rowed for decades without ever setting foot on shore." Professor Davis estimates that up to 1,25 million Europeans were enslaved by Muslim slave raiders between 1500 to 1800.  


       The West is familiar with the history of slavery in the new world.  It was sinful and terrible, and it lasted for several hundred years. It was abolished mainly through the efforts of Christians in England (Wilberforce, Clarkson) and America (the Abolitionists, primarily Protestant).

            However, few people in the west know about Muhammadan Islam and slavery.  Most would be surprised to find out that the Quran authorizes the taking of slaves as spoils of war.  From the moment 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.

            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 inland into darkest Africa to capture slaves because they were already waiting there, courtesy of many Muslim rulers, 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 bought by Arabs; thousands more were sent to India and other parts of the Empire or kept by other black Muslims as slaves.

       It is extraordinary that, considering that less than 5% of all the Trans Atlantic slaves ended up in North America, the vast majority of films, books and articles concerning the slave trade concentrate only on the American involvement in the slave trade, as though slavery was a uniquely American aberration.  

       However, the vastly greater involvement of Portugal, Spain and France seem to be largely ignored.  Even more so the far greater and longer running Islamic slave trade into the Middle East has been so ignored as to make it one of history's best-kept secrets.

       We tend to focus on what happened in North America because the United States would eventually fight a war, in part over slavery, and because of the enormous and vocal American opposition to slavery.  This was in sharp contrast to the indifference that Muslims, Africans and many Europeans evidenced towards it.


       The legends of European slave raiders venturing into the jungles of Africa to capture free peoples are generally just that:  myths. 

       The embarrassing fact of history, is that the Europeans did not have to use any force to obtain these slaves.  The slaves were "sold" by their black owners.  There was no need for the slave raiders to risk their lives or venture into the jungles of Africa, they simply purchased the people from African chiefs and Muslim slave traders at the coast. 

       However, while the slave trade and slavery itself was always criticised vigorously in Britain and America, no comparable criticism was evident in the Muslim Middle East or amongst the African tribes which sold their own people, and neighbouring tribes, into slavery.  

       Almost all of the African slaves transported across the Atlantic were captured and sold by African rulers and Arab & Muslim merchants. 

       Many chiefs found it more profitable to sell their enemies, criminals and debtors than to kill or imprison them.  Many were weaker neighbouring tribes conquered for the express purpose of selling their people into slavery.  The disgraceful fact is that there were three equally guilty partners in the crime of the Trans Atlantic slave trade:  Pagan African chiefs, Muslim Arabs and Christian Europeans.

       The Trade, as it became known, involved a triangular voyage.  Slave ships sailed from Bristol or Liverpool loaded with cloths, beads, muskets, iron bars and brandy.  This merchandise was then traded in West Africa in exchange for slaves.  Mostly African chiefs sold their own people, or engaged in wars and slave raids against neighbouring tribes to capture victims for this trade.  Often professional Arab slave traders provided the victims. 

       The middle passage transported the slaves to the West Indies.  Here the slaves were sold and the ships loaded with spices, rum, molasses and sugar.  The third leg of the journey was the return to England.  The average Englishman on the street was kept in the dark as to what was actually happening on the middle passage, until, in 1785, Thomas Clarkson's landmark study "Slavery and Commerce In the Human Species" was first published at Cambridge.  

       According to Clarkson's research, 10% of the slaves would normally die during the middle passage.  Strong men would fetch as much as £40 while the women and children were sold in cheap batches with the sick and weak men.  In England 18, 000 people were employed simply on making the goods to trade for slaves in Africa.  This trade constituted 4.4% of British exports.  


       While the British Navy was defeating the slave trade in the Atlantic, the East African slave trade was increasing.  It was missionary explorer David Livingstone whose graphic descriptions brought the ravages of the East African slave trade to light.  His Missionary Travels and Narrative of an Expedition to the Zambezi exposed the horrors of the slave trade:  "Two of the women had been shot the day before for attempting to untie their thongs.  One woman had her infants brains knocked out because she could not carry her load and it; and a man was dispatched with an axe because he had broken down with fatigue; those taken out of the country are but a very small section of the sufferers. 

        We never realised the atrocious nature of the traffic until we saw it at the fountain head.  'There truly Satan has his seat.'  Besides those actually captured thousands are killed and die of their wounds and famine, driven from their villages by the internecine war waged for slaves with their own clansmen and neighbours, slain by the lust of gain, which is stimulated, be it remembered always, by the slave purchases of Cuba and elsewhere."


       The British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society reported that most slaves were captured in the Lake Niassa area (Malawi and Mozambique), the Bahr El Ghazal region and in areas of Ethiopia.  Slaves were taken to East African markets like Zanzibar, Kilwa and Quelimane and then shipped to Turkey, India, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, Iraq, Iran and to the islands of Pemba, Reunion and Madagascar. 

       The Anti-Slavery Reporter estimated the Muslim slave trade as exporting 63,000 slaves per year.  Some estimates went as high as 500,000 slaves exported in a single year. One researcher, Ralph Austen calculated that between 1830 and 1861 imports of slaves to the Persian Gulf averaged 3700 to 3100 per annum.  This same researcher noted that about 8855 slaves a year were retained as slaves on the East African coast as slaves of African slave masters.

       Few authors dared describe the horrors involved in the Trans- Sahara slave trade:  kidnapping and castrating young boys to be sold as eunuchs ("the living dead") in the homes of wealthy Arab landlords and force marching young women across endless miles of scorching sand in the Sahara desert to become slave concubines, most dying in transit.  The Muslim slave trade typically dealt in the sale of castrated male slaves:  eunuchs.  Eunuchs were created by completely amputating the scrotum and penis of eight to twelve year old African boys.  Hundreds of thousands of young boys bled to death during this gory procedure.  The survival rate from this process ranged from 1 in 10 to 1 in 30.  These castrated boys brought the highest price at the slave market. 


       Islam's Black Slaves notes:  "the Quran stipulated that female slaves might lawfully be enjoyed by their masters [RAPED].Muhammad himself owned many slaves, some of whom he captured in wars of conquest and some he purchased.  The names of forty slaves owned by Muhammad are recorded by Muslim chroniclers.  Islamic law (Sharia) contains elaborate regulations for slavery.  A slave had no right to be heard in court (testimony was forbidden by slaves), slaves had no right to property, could marry only with the permission of the owner, and were considered to be chattel, that is the movable property, of the slave owner.  Muslim slave owners were specifically entitled by Sharia law to sexually exploit their slaves,  including hiring them out as prostitutes.

       One reason why very little has been written about the Arab involvement in slavery is that traditional Islamic culture still condones slavery.  The Sharia, the codified Islamic law which is based upon the teachings and example of Muhammad, contains explicit regulations for slavery.  

       One of the primary principles of Islam is following the example of Muhammad ,  called the SUNNA. Whatever Muhammad did, his followers must do, what he forbade, they must forbid, what he did not forbid, they may not forbid. 

       As Muhammad himself traded in slaves and owned slaves, accumulating multiple wives, even marrying a six year old, and having concubines - slavery and the sexual exploitation of women is deeply ingrained in Islamic tradition.  Muslim nations had engaged in the slave trade for over 600 years before Europe became involved in the Trans-Atlantic slave trade. 


       Almost 200 years after the British outlawed the slave trade in 1807, slave raids and the sale of slaves in Muslim markets continues in countries like Sudan.  The slave trade remained legal in Saudi Arabia until 1962, when under international pressure it was finally abolished.  However, there are persistent, credible reports, that slavery persists in Saudi Arabia, and even that slaves from Sudan are ending up in Saudi Arabia.

       Recently, a former slave from the Nuba Mountains of Sudan, Mende Nazer, had her autobiography:  "Slave:  My True Story" published.  Mende was captured in 1992, she was first a slave to a rich Arab family in Khartoum, and then in 2002 to a Sudanese diplomat in London, from whom she escaped and sought political asylum. 


       Although the Hebrew Bible provided for slavery for criminals and insolvent debtors, kidnapping and enslaving law-abiding people incurred the death penalty.  

 Exodus 21:16 "Anyone who kidnaps another and either sells him or still has him when he is caught must be put to death.

       The New Testament expressly forbids both the slave trade and slavery itself. 

 1 Timothy 1:9-10 "....the Law is made not for the righteous but for Law breakers....for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for adulterers and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers." 

Galatians 3:28 "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free.....for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

Acts 17:26 "From one man He made every nation of men." 

Mark 12:30-31 "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your your neighbour as yourself." 

John 8:32 "Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free." 

2 Cor. 3:17 ".....where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom." 

Leviticus 25:10 ".....proclaim liberty throughout the land." 


            To begin with, the Quran justifies slavery, and often mentions slaves.  Here are some relevant verses:

33:50 - "Prophet, We have made lawful to you the wives to whom you have granted dowries and the slave girls whom Allah has given you as booty."

            *** This verse clearly shows that Muhammadans believe that taking slaves in war was an Allah-given right.  These slaves were considered 'booty' or the spoils of war ***

 23:5 -   "... except with their wives and slave girls, for these are lawful to them:..."

            *** The passage's context here (not quoted in full) details how Muslim males are allowed to have sexual relations with their wives and slave girls. Implicit in this is that Muslim males had slave-concubines.  (70:30 is basically a repeat of 23:5) ***

            Ibn Sa'd's "Tabaqat", gives a clear description of Muhammad having sexual 'relations' with his Coptic slave girl, Mariya. Mariyah and her sister, Sirin were slaves given as gifts to Muhammad.  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."  [Taken from Ibn Sa'd's "Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Kabir" (Book of the Major Classes), p151].

            Ibn Sa'd also writes that Mariyah bore Muhammad a son named Ibrahim.  He died 18 months later.  Sa'd writes:  "If he had lived, no maternal uncle of his would have remained in bondage", p164.  This shows that there were other Coptic slaves owned by the Muslims.

            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 (4:24), and to free them at times as a penalty for a 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).  [90:10 'freeing of a bondsman' refers to Muslims ransoming other Muslims who were slaves of non-Muslims.]

            While it's nice to allow a slave to obtain his/her freedom, (at the master's discretion) it is tragic that the Quran allows them to be enslaved in the first place.  That's like robbing a bank and giving some of the money back to it, and pretending one did the right thing.

            The above verses show that taking slaves was ordained by Allah, and that it was permissible for Muslim males to have sex - RAPE - with their female slaves.  It also shows that slaves were a valuable commodity to the Muslims, otherwise, Allah would not have imposed the penalty of freeing a slave to make up for a crime.


            There are hundreds of Hadiths (Ahadith) that deal with slavery.  Whole chapters of Hadiths are dedicated to dealing with the taxation, treatment, sale, and jurisprudence of slaves.  In addition to this, numerous Hadiths mention slaves, and their relation to their Muslim masters.  Here is a selection of Hadiths on slaves:  [all these are from Sahih Bukhari, unless noted.]

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith Hadith 3.765 Narrated Kuraib, the freed slave of Ibn 'Abbas, that :
Maimuna bint Al-Harith told him that she manumitted a slave-girl without taking the permission of the Prophet. On the day when it was her turn to be with the Prophet, she said, "Do you know, O Allah's Apostle, that I have manumitted my slave-girl?" He said, "Have you really?" She replied in the affirmative. He said, "You would have got more reward if you had given her (i.e. the slave-girl) to one of your maternal uncles."

       *** In this case, Maimuna, the wife of Muhammad,  freed a slave girl, but Muhammad asserts that she would have gotten more (heavenly) reward if she had given the slave to one of her uncles, thus keeping the slave in continued servitude and added sexual abuse ***

Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 5.67 Narrated Ibn Ishaq: 
 The Ghazwa (attack upon) Uyaina bin Hisn waged against Banu Al-Anbar, a branch of Banu Tamim.  The prophet sent Uyaina to raid them.  He raided them and killed some of them and took some others as captives.

            *** Once more, Muhammad sent out his men to attack another tribe.  They killed some of them and took others as captives.  Once again, the Muslims attacked an UNSUSPECTING neighboring tribe.

Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 5.182  Narrated Aisha: 
 "Abu Bakr had a slave who used to give him some of his earnings.

       *** The Muhammadan Muslims did not shrink from taking some of the meager and miserably little earnings of their own slaves ***

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith Hadith 5.459 Narrated Ibn Muhairiz:  
"I entered the mosque and saw Abu Khudri and sat beside him and asked him about coitus interruptus.  Abu  said, "We went out with Allah's messenger for the Ghazwa (Piratical raid) against Banu Mustaliq and we received captives from among the Arab captives and we desired women and celibacy became hard on us and we loved to do coitus interruptus.  So when we intended to do coitus interruptus we said "How can we do coitus interruptus without asking Allah's messenger while he is present among us?"  We asked (him) about it and he said "It is better for you not to do so, for if any soul (till the Day of Resurrection) is predestined to exist, it will exist.""

            *** Here, the Muhammadan Muslims AMBUSHED the Banu Mustaliq, and took slaves.  The female slaves were distributed as booty to the Muslim pirates.  Being away from home, the plunderers became horny, and wanted to have sexual relations with the newly captured female slaves.  They went to Muhammad and asked about coitus interruptus.  He told them not to practice that, but to complete the sexual act with the slaves. 

        Related Hadith show that they didn't want to get the women pregnant because they wanted to be able to sell them later on.  Under Islamic law they were not allowed to sell pregnant female slaves. Their concern was purely 'economic' and not compassionate. 

            In effect, Muhammad SANCTIONED the RAPE of female prisoners ***

Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 5.512  Narrated Anas:
  ".....The prophet had their warriors killed, their offspring and woman taken as captives...."

         *** This Hadith details the UNPROVOKED attack on the UNSUSPECTING Jews of Khaibar.  Again, many of the women and children were taken and made into slaves ***

Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 5.541 Narrated Abu Huraira:  
When we conquered Khaibar, we gained neither gold nor silver as booty, but we gained cows, camels, goods and gardens.  Then we departed with Allah's apostle to the valley of Al-Qira, and at that time Allah's messenger had a slave called Midam who had been presented to him by one of Banu Ad-Dibbab.  While the slave was dismounting the saddle of Allah's messenger an arrow the thrower of which was unknown, came and hit him.....

         *** Another slave to be added to Muhammad's collection ***

 Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 5.637    Narrated Buraida:  
The prophet sent Ali to Khalid to bring the Khumus ([one fifth] of the booty) and I hated Ali, and Ali had taken a bath (after a sexual act with a slave girl from the Khumus).  I said to Khalid, "Don't you see this (i.e. Ali)?"  When we reached the prophet I mentioned that to him.  He said, "O Buraida!  Do you hate Ali?"  I said, "Yes"  He said, "Do you hate him, for he deserves more than that from the Khumus."

         *** Buraida hated Ali because the latter had RAPED a slave girl from the booty - before it was 'rightly' distributed among the Muslim mercenaries - which was considered 'illegal' and 'unjust' in the context of the 
Robber Fraternity.

       None the less, Muhammad approved the RAPE despite the fact that Ali had broken one of the CARDINAL rules that Muhammad himself had 'ordained' regarding all BOOTY ***

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith Hadith 7.137  Narrated Abu al-Khudri:
  "We got female captives in the war booty and we used to do coitus interruptus with them.  So we asked Allah's messenger about it and he said, "Do you really do that?" repeating the question thrice, "There is no soul that is destined to exist but will come into existence, till the Day of Resurrection.""

            Here, Muhammadans had taken female slaves, and had sex with them, actually RAPED them.  Muhammad approved of this.  He only admonished them not to practice coitus interruptus.

 Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 7.346& 344 Narrated byAnas
I was a young boy when I once was walking with Allah's Apostle . Allah's Apostle entered the house of his slave tailor and the latter brought a dish filled with food covered with pieces of gourd. Allah's Apostle started picking and eating the gourd. When I saw that, I started collecting and placing the gourd before him. Then the slave returned to his work. Anas added: I have kept on loving gourd since I saw Allah's Apostle doing what he was doing.

       *** This Hadith shows that another one of Muhammad's slaves was a 
tailor ***

Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 7.734    
 "....At the door of the [Muhammad's] room there was a slave to whom I went and said, "Ask the permission for me to enter".....

            *** It is obvious from this final part of avery long Hadith, that the quote reveals that Muhammad has slaves working in his household ***

  Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 9.462 Narrated Aisha: 
 "...Furthermore you may ask the slave girl who will tell you the truth".  So the prophet asked Barira (my slave girl)...

         *** Even Aisha, had her own slave ***

         Also,  Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith  1.29, 439, 661; 7.845, 341, 352, 371, 410, 413, 654,  and  9.293, 296, 277, 100, 80; all of these Hadiths show that many other Muslims owned slaves.

Furthermore in the following Hadiths from Abu Dawud:

Abu Dawud, vol. 2, chapter 597 - #1814- 
 "(Abu Bakr) began to beat him (Bakr's slave) while the apostle of Allah was smiling and saying:  "Look at this man who is in the sacred state, what is he doing?" 
[The note for this Hadith says "Abu Bakr beat his slave to teach him sense of responsibility."]

Abu Dawud, vol. 2, chapter 683 - #2074- 
 "Ibn Umar reported the prophet as saying:  "If a slave marries without the permission of his master, his marriage is null and void."

Abu Dawud, vol. 2, chapter 1317 - #3499, 3500-
"The contractual obligation of a slave is three days.  If he finds defect in the slave within three days, he may return it without any evidence;  if he finds a defect after three days, he will be required to produce evidence that the slave had the defect when he brought it."

         *** Contractual Obligation of a Slave as between the seller and the buyer of slaves ***

From Al Muwatta of Imam Maliki, here are a few more examples:

Chapter 368 - "Who takes the Property of a Slave When He is Freed"

Chapter 371 - "Slaves who cannot be set Free in the Obligatory Freeing of a Slave"

Chapter 383 - "Cohabitation with a Slave Girl after Declaring Her 'Mudabbir'" (free after the master's death).

Chapter 387 - "Who is Entitled to the Property of a Slave or Slave Girl at the time of Sale."

Chapter 388 - "The Limit of Responsibility of the Seller in the Sale of a Slave or Slave 

Chapter 390 - "On the Conditional Sale of a Slave Girl."

       *** The reader should be made aware that the chapters mentioned above, show just how intrinsic slavery was during Muhammad's life, and the lives of the Caliphs.  

       Al Muwatta is a book of Islamic jurisprudence.  It is full of regulations on dealing with slaves.  Slaves were used throughout the Islamic world.  Judging from the amount of Hadiths here, it is safe to assume that a great number of Muslims owned slaves.

            There are additional chapters dealing with slaves.  This list is enough to show that dealing with slaves during and after Muhammad's time was INSTITUTIONALIZED and EXTENSIVE ***

 From other Islamic writings on Muslims owning slaves :

            Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya, a great scholar and Islamic historian says in his book "Zad al-Ma'ad", part 1, p160:

       "Muhammad had many male and female slaves.  He used to buy and sell them, but he purchased more slaves than he sold.  He once sold one black slave for two.  His purchases of slaves were more than he sold."

            "Muhammad had a number of black slaves.  One of them was named 'Mahran'.  Muhammad forced him to do more labor than the average man. Whenever Muhammad went on a trip and he, or his people, got tired of carrying their stuff, he made Mahran carry it.  Mahran said "Even if I were already carrying the load of 6 or 7 donkeys while we were on a journey, anyone who felt weak would throw his clothes or his shield or his sword on me so I would carry that, a heavy load".  Tabari and Jawziyya both record this, so Islam accepts this as true."

            Ali, who was Muhammad's son-in-law, whipped Aisha's slave in front of Muhammad to make her talk about the adultery charges against Aisha.  Muhammad did not say a word to Ali about beating the female slave. 
 [From the Sirat Rasulallah, p496.]

            In the Sirat Rasulallah, Muhammad massacred 800 males and took their women and children as slaves.  He kept at least one Jewish female named Rayhana as his concubine, and gave the rest away to the Muslims.  The Sirat says (p466): 
"Then the apostle divided the property, wives, and children of Banu Qurayza among the Muslims....and

       "Then the apostle sent Sa'd Zayd brother of Ashhal with some of the captive women of Banu Qurayza to Najd and he sold them for horse and weapons."

            *** There is only one clear conclusion based entirely upon the Islamic records themselves:  MUHAMMAD WAS A SLAVER.  

       The names of many of Muhammad's slaves are detailed in Muslim
 writings ***

 The Rights of Slaves under Islam-

            According to the Hughes Dictionary of Islam, slaves had few civil or legal rights.  For example:

a)         Muslim men were allowed to have sex anytime with females slaves - Sura 4:3, 4:29, 33:50.

4:3        If ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans marry women of your choice two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly (with them) then only one or (a captive) that your right hands possess.  That will be more suitable to prevent you from doing injustice. 

4:29        O ye who believe! eat not up your property among yourselves in vanities: but let there be amongst you traffic and trade by mutual good-will: nor kill (or destroy) yourselves: for verily Allah hath been to you Most Merciful.

33:50        O prophet! We have made lawful to thee thy wives to whom thou hast paid their dowers; and those whom thy right hand possesses out of the prisoners of war whom Allah has assigned to thee; and daughters of thy paternal uncles and aunts and daughters of thy maternal uncles and aunts who migrated (from Mecca) with thee; and any believing woman who dedicates her soul to the Prophet if the Prophet wishes to wed her this only for thee and not for the Believers (at large); We know what We have appointed for them as to their wives and the captives whom their right hands possess in order that there should be no difficulty for Thee.  And Allah is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful. 

b)         Slaves are as helpless before their masters as idols are before Allah Sura 16:75

16:75        Allah sets forth the Parable (of two men: one) a slave under the dominion of another; he has no power of any sort; and (the other) a man on whom We have bestowed goodly favors from ourselves and he spends thereof (freely) privately and publicly: are the two equal? (By no means); praise be to Allah.  But most of them understand not.

c)         According to Islamic Tradition, people at the time of their capture were either to be killed, or enslaved.  Shows you that they were at the bottom of the barrel to start with.

d)         According to Islamic jurisprudence, slaves were merchandise. The sales of slaves was in accordance with the sale of animals.

e)         Muhammad ordered that some slaves who were freed by their master be 

f)          It is permissible under Islamic law to whip slaves.

g)         According to Islam, a Muslim could not be put to death for murdering a slave.  
(Ref. 2:178 and the Jalalayn confirm this).

h)         According to Islam, the testimony of slaves is not admissible in court. 
( Ibn Timiyya and Bukhari confirm this)

i)          According to Islamic jurisprudence, slaves cannot choose their own marriage mate.
(Ibn Hazm, vol. 6, part 9)

j)          According to Islamic jurisprudence, slaves can be forced to marry who their masters want. 
(Malik ibn Anas, vol. 2, page 155).

            Slavery continued in Islamic lands from about the beginning to this very day.  Muslim rulers always found support in the Quran to call 'jihad', partly for booty, part for the purpose of taking slaves.  

       As the Islamic empire disintegrated into smaller kingdoms, and each ruler was able to decide what Islam's theology really meant.  Usually, he always found it in support of what he wanted to do.  Their calls of jihad against their neighbor facilitated the taking of slaves for Islam.  The Quran and Islamic jurisprudence support the taking of slaves, so, those petty Muslim rulers were following the Quran whenever they needed slaves.

Who can be made a slave in Islam-

1)         Islam allows Muslims to make slaves out of anyone who is captured during war.

2)         Islam allows for the children of slaves to be raised as slaves

3)         Like #1, Islam allows for Christians and Jews to be made into slaves if they are captured in war.  After Muslim armies attacked and conquered Spain, they took thousands of slaves back to Damascus.  The key prize was 1000 virgins as slaves.  They were forced to go all the way back to Damascus.

4)         Christians and Jews, who had made a treaty with the ruling Muslims could be made into slaves if they did not pay the "protection" tax.  This paying for 'protection' was just like paying a Mafia racketeer.  This allowed Muslim rulers to extort money from non-Muslim people.

From where did the slaves of the Muslims come ?

            Although Muslims took slaves from all over the lands they conquered, many of the Muslim slaves were black Africans.  They were forced to do the harshest labor.

            There was a famous black slave revolt in Iraq where thousands of black slaves revolted and killed tens of thousands of Arabs in Basrah.  These slaves were forced to work in the large Muslim saltpeter mines.  During their revolt, they conquered the city of Basrah, in Iraq.  They conquered city after city, and they couldn't be stopped.  Their uprising and drive for freedom lasted for about 11 years.  ["The History of Islam", Robert Payne, p.185.]

            As the Muslim armies continued to conquer diverse lands, they acquired many slaves.  Bernard Lewis in "The Arabs in History" writes:  "polytheists and idolaters were seen primarily as sources of slaves."

            In the early years of the Arab conquests, vast numbers of slaves were acquired by capture.  C.E. Bosworth in "The Islamic Dynasties" writes:  "the use of this labor enabled the Arabs to live on the conquered land as a rentier class and to exploit the economic potential of the rich Fertile Crescent."

            Ibn Warraq writes:  "Arabs were deeply involved in the vast network of slave trading - they scoured the slave markets of China, India, and Southeast Asia.  There were Turkish slaves from Central Asia, slaves from the Byzantine Empire, white slave from Central and East Europe, and Black slaves from West and East Africa.  Every city in the Islamic world had its slave market."

Slavery in modern Islam today-

            Muhammad did say that slaves should be treated fairly.  But they were still a Muslim's property.  Just as abuses occurred under Christianity, so too, many abuses occurred, and still occur under Islam.  The difference between the two is that Islam ordains the taking of slaves during war or raids for plunder, thus perpetuating slavery.  Christianity does not.  
In slavery's perpetual existence, Islam has seen great abuses of slaves.

            Everyone knows about the abuses of slaves in the new world.  What do you know about the abuses of slaves under Islam?  There are three very good books on slavery and Islam. 

1)         "Slavery and Muslim Society in Africa", by Allan Fisher, pub in 1971.

2)         "The Slave Trade Today" by Sean O'Callaghan, pub in 1961.

 3)      " The Legacy of Arab-Islam in Africa" by John Alembillah Azumah, Oneworld Publications, 2001.

            These books really are astounding eye-openers to how terrible slavery under Islam was and still is.  I use the present tense, because it is obvious that these abuses continue to this day.

           Here are a number of other references concerning slavery in Islam.  A general survey is Hughes Dictionary of Islam.  It notes a few basic points:

i)         Slaves have no civil liberty, but are entirely under the authority of their owners.

ii)         Slavery is in complete harmony with the spirit of Muhammadan Islam.  Islam did make life better for the average slave, but Muhammad intended it to be a perpetual institution.

iii)         Hughes also says that it is a righteous act to free a slave. I just find it hard to understand that the god who sanctioned Muhammad to take slaves later tells him it's good to free slaves?

            In 'The Slave Trade Today', Sean O'Callaghan toured the Mideast and Africa and covertly visited many slave markets.  Since Islam allows for slavery and slave trading, he was able to see much of the real world of Islamic slavery.  Remember O'Callaghan saw this less than 40 years ago.  This still continues today, albeit more discreetly.

In Djibouti he writes:

            "Ten boys were ranged in a circle on the dais (used to display the slaves), their buttocks toward us.  They were all naked, and I saw with horror that five had been castrated.  The (slave dealer) said that usually 10% of the boys are castrated, being purchased by Saudi homosexuals, or by Yemenis, who own harems, as guards." p 75

            "Why had the girls (female slaves who had just been sold) had accepted their fate without a murmur, the boys howled and cried?"  "Simple" said the Somali, we tell the girls from a very early age  - 7 or 8 that they are made for love, at age NINE we let them practice with each other, and a year later with the boys".

In Aden he writes:

            "The Yemeni told me that the girls (slave girls used as prostitutes) were encouraged to have children, especially by white men.  For if a slave girl had a white child, she was given a bonus of 20 pounds when the child was taken from her".    As you can see, the child of a slave remained a slave, the owner could sell the child and make money.  This sale is allowable under Islamic law.

            "Only one offense was severely punished; attempting to escape from the harem... The wretched girl was stripped and spread eagle in the courtyard...punishment was administer by a eunuch, a huge powerful Negro who seemed to enjoy his task.  70 lashes were given."

            "Because of this (the fact that eunuchs can perform sexually), the eunuch often has his penis removed as well as his testicles"!  This is also legal under Islamic law, since it is preparing the slave for service.

In Saudi Arabia he writes:

            'The slave population was estimated at 450,000"!.  ....Slave auctions are no longer held regularly, only in an alley in Mecca."

            'I was awakened by shouts and screams coming from the courtyard.  Rushing to the window I looked down to see a dozen slaves being herded through a door at the far end of the yard.  They were being driven in like cattle by three hefty guards armed with long lashed whips.  Even as I watched, one of the poor wretches, a Sudanese girl with huge breasts, received a savage lash across her naked buttocks let out a shriek of agony'

            'As the next slave was led in, a murmur of excitement went up among the buyers and they crowded closer around the rostrum.  He was a slender boy of about 12 years old with beautiful classical Arab features.  Although much has been written about Arab brotherhood and solidarity, I knew that the Arab has no compunction in enslaving his fellows should they fall into his hands.

            The boy was naked and tried to cover his privates with his little hands and he ran up the steps of the rostrum......there is an age old saying among the Bedouin:  "A goat for use, a girl for enjoyment, but a boy for ecstasy".  He (the now purchased slave boy) was claimed by a tall bearded Arab who led him from the rostrum with an arm around his waist".
               This is just a portion of what O'Callaghan saw.  This happens because Islam has made slavery not only legal but sanctioned by Allah.  Yes, some of this is against Islam, but because Islam has made it into an institution, abuses will occur.

        You must remember that this happened just 35 years ago or so, and it is  still happening today.

            It also should be noted that as the slaves get too old to perform service or sexually satisfy their masters, their masters 'manumit' the slaves.  Now, aged, worn out, they are put out on the streets to fend for themselves. These ex-slaves are left to fend for themselves.  Their former owner has committed a great, righteousness act in freeing a slave!  He gets rid of the burdensome slave, and gets a bonus in heaven.  What a 'religion'.

            In Fisher's book, other observations are recorded:

In Mecca:

       "We take note of 20 tall Negroes in turbans walking near the Kaba.  They are eunuch slaves and are employed as police in the great Mosque.  There are about 50 of them all together."

            "The streets are full of slaves... we see a few old slave women.  They are recognized by the poverty of clothing... but we see nothing of the younger women slaves who are kept in the houses of the city."

            "As we move along we see two or three very old men and women who look like black skeletons.  If we go to the mosque at sunrise we shall see some of these, if we go at sunset they will be there too, and if we pass by at midnight, we shall see them there still .. Sleeping on the stones in their rags.  They have no home but the mosque, and no food but what they receive in alms; (they were) turned out to seek the bounty of Allah, as their masters would say."

            Speaking of how Saudi obtains so many black slaves:  "they (the slave traders) pose as Muslim missionaries who guide their compatriots (black African Muslims), to the Holy Places of Islam, to make the Pilgrimage, and be instructed in the Quran in Arabic." 
 Once transported, they are made into slaves.

            "So with the connivance of the Saudi authorities the ancient trade in black ivory is perpetuated in our time in spite of the international conventions".

            Fisher also notes that white slaves are most highly prized.

            Another interesting comment made, is that there were regions in black Africa that Muslim missionaries wouldn't go into.  The reason is that if those blacks became Muslim, they could no longer enslave them.  So, the Muslims banned spreading the word of Islam among certain black tribes.  It was from these tribes that local Muslim rulers would harvest slaves, and sell them throughout the Islamic world.

            Time and time again, slavery in Islam is abused.  The west has finished with slavery, Islam continues it, and with that, the abuses go on.

            There have been numerous articles written by every form of press on Islamic slavery in Sudan.  Basically, southern Sudanese, who are not Muslim, are attacked, and rounded up, and sold into slavery.  Anyone willing to do a search at a library could find these articles quite easily.

            Lastly, in one of Tony Brown's Journal show which was covering the slavery existing in Muslim lands today, the torture of slaves, the hobbling by breaking the young boys ankles, the seizure of Negro lands by Arabs, etc.  Anyone is able to call the show and order this tape.  A Negro Muslim from Mauritania was on the show.  He described what the Arabs in Mauritania were doing to the Negroes (all Muslim) there.  Recent human rights publications have also stated that the same is happening in Mali.  Arab Muslims are forcibly taking land, and enslaving Negro Muslims there. 

            Islam, when compared to Christianity is a step backwards; a step into "justification" of the enslavement of others.

       The emancipation of slaves is recommended by Muhammad, but the recommendation applies exclusively to slaves who are of the Muhammadan faith. 

       He is related to have said: "Whoever frees a Muslim slave Allah will redeem that person from hell-fire member for member." (Mishkat book xiii c xix.). 

       It is therefore laudable in a man to release his slave or for a woman to free her bond woman, in order that they may secure freedom in the next world. (Hidayah, vol I, p 420.)

       *** The greatest evil and tragedy of  Islam & Slavery of TODAY is the almost total lack of exposure by the major media outlets in the West, as if these human abuses do not exist.

       Even in the so called UN, this subject is swept under the carpet.

       The media, many Western politicians, many of the Christian clergy and almost ALL of the Muhammadan world exhibit an OBSCENE degree of  HYPOCRICY and a DEPRAVED PATHOLOGICAL INDIFFERENCE to reality, facts, morality, mercy, compassion & justice. 

       Their DEAFENING SILENCE is a measure of their TOTAL CONSENT at these ATROCITIES ***