The Second Badr
By: Ayatullah Ja'far Subhani
At the end of the Battle of Uhud, Abu Sufyan declared: "Next year we shall meet you in the desert of Badr at this very time and shall take a greater revenge upon you".
Under orders of the Prophet the Muslims announced their readiness to fight. The fixed time of one year expired and Abu Sufyan, who then ruling over Quraysh, was involved in various difficulties. Na'im bin Mas'ud, who had friendly relations with both the parties arrived in Makkah. Abu Sufyan requested him to return to Madina immediately and dissuade Muhammad from deciding to come out of Madina. He added: "It is not possible for us to leave Makkah this year and the demonstrations and military manoeuvres of Muhammad in Badr, which is a common market of the Arabs, will bring about our defeat".
Whatever motive he might have, Na'im returned to Madina. His words did not, however, make the least effect on the morale of the Prophet. He encamped in Badr in the beginning of the month of Zi Qa'dul Haram with 1500 warriors and some horses and a quantity of merchandise, and stayed there for eight days, which coincided with the annual public market of the Arabs. The Muslims sold their merchandise there and earned enormous profit. Thereafter the people who had come from different areas dispersed, but the army of Islam continued to wait for the arrival of the army of Quraysh.
Reports reached Makkah that Muhammad had arrived in Badr. The chiefs of Quraysh had no alternative left to save themselves from disgrace, except to leave Makkah for Badr. Abu Sufyan, who was well-equipped, came up to Marruz Zahran, but returned from mid-way making an excuse of famine and dearth. The return of the army of the idolaters was so shocking that Safwan protested to Abu Sufyan and said: "By this retreat we have lost all the honours that we had gained, and if you had not made a promise last year of waging a war we would not have been faced with this psychological defeat''. [According to Mughazi-i Waqidi, vol. I, page 484, this incident took place in the 45th month of migration].