Recruitment of the Makkan Army

The idolaters applied the rows system in the mobilization of their army. The general leadership of the army was entrusted to Abu Sufyan Sakhr bin Harb, who would be in the centre-position of the army. Khalid bin Al-Waleed was on the right wing; whereas ‘Ikrima, the son of Abu Jahl was on the left. Safwan bin Omaiya was in charge of infantry men. The archers were under the command of ‘Abdullah bin Abi Rabi‘a.

As for the standard, a squad of Bani ‘Abd Ad-Dar were in charge to bear it. Thus was the distribution of the posts of the army ever since ‘Abd Munaf had already assigned them. This assignment had been inherited from Qusai bin Kilab — as we have previously alluded to in an early phase of this book. No one had the right to compete them with it. It was consistent with their traditions that they had inherited from their ancestors.

Abu Sufyan, the general leader, reminded his men — the standard bearers — of what had happened to Quraish on Badr Day (i.e. battle) when their standard bearer, An-Nadr bin Al-Harith, was captured. In an attempt to wage their anger and enmity to the Muslims he said: "O Bani ‘Abd Ad-Dar! You have been assigned bearers of our standard and you know that the standard is the first thing that the enemy attacks. Should it fall, we fall down too. Therefore, I say either you guarantee its safety or leave it for us, and we will certainly suffice you that task."

Abu Sufyan’s attempt seemed to be fruitful. For his speech made Bani ‘Abd Ad-Dar so extremely angry that they threatened him and almost attacked him for that. Addressing him, they said: "You want us to deliver you the custodianship of the standard? Tomorrow when we fight them, you will witness our deeds." As a matter of fact, they fought bravely and stoodfast in defence of the standard till they were all killed.