How was the First Caliph Nominated?
Several factors can be cited to have motivated some Muslims to choose Abu Bakr as their leader:
1. Resentment to see both Prophethood and Imamate posts occupied by Bani Hashim. This factor was revealed by Umar in a long conversation with Ibn Abbas: According to Umar:
(If Prophethood and Imamate posts were both occupied by Bani Hashim) then they would constantly brag about them!!
2. Ali's young age
3. The Arabs, especially the Quraishans envy of Ali (A.S.)
4. Ali (A.S.)would lead and judge people according to righteousness and the right path, had he been chosen as the leader, as Umar stated.
It is inevitable after Abu Bakr seized power that Ali (A.S.)should pay allegiance to him, for it is the natural path of every coup to force the opposition to announce its support to the -new regime. But what can they do with Ali who refused to pledge allegiance to Abu Bakr?
Can they threaten him? But he is the famous hero who was able to extinguish the Arab heroes, kill their brave men, and compete with their "wolves"!!
Can they deceive him (A.S.)into doing so?! But Ali is that cautious man who is aware in such matters!!
Nevertheless, allegiance must be taken from Ali at any rate.
But behold! What would Lady Fatima's stand be had Ali (A.S.)been forced to pledge allegiance to Abu Bakr? In other Words, what can be done if Lady Fatima (A.S.)chooses to defend her husband?!
Should they ignore all these obstacles?! Or what should they do?!
This created an unsolvable problem for the coup leaders who spent long hours reflecting on the issue. Meanwhile, Imam Ali (A.S.)confined himself to his house to collect the Holy Quran, after realizing the fruitlessness of his efforts to regain his rights. He was virtually secluded from the outside world. This situation was disadvantageous to the coup leaders, for in Ali's refusal to pledge allegiance to Abu Bakr lies a deep meaning and an excuse for others to object to Abu Bakr's seizure of power.
Yet, opinions met of the necessity to bring Ali (A.S.)by force to the Mosque, whatever the price may be. Especially in light of the fact, which they later came to realize, that he was more concerned about the Islamic interests than his own. Therefore, a commissioned force led by Umar's slave boy, Qunfud, was sent to Ali's house. When this force reached the house, Qunfud requested permission to enter so they may speak to him regarding the issue; but Ali (A.S.)refused them permission to enter; after which they returned to the Mosque and said to Abu Bakr and Umar:
"We were refused permission to enter."
Umar said: "Go back and if you are denied permission again, then enter (the house) with force."
So the group once again asked for permission, but Fatima (A.S.)said: "You are prohibited from entering my house without permission."
Upon hearing this, the members of the force went back-save Qunfud. They informed Umar that they were not allowed to enter the house. This angered Umar who said:
"What do women have in this?!"
Events continued to occur, and two pictures are drawn in front to us:
Umar orders his slave boy to start Fatima's house on fire! A man objects by saying:
"But Fatima is in it."
Yet Umar replied: "So what!!"
Second: (According to Jahiz and the author of Abaqat Al-Anwar):
The Prophet assigned Ali (A.S.)as his successor. All the companions had full knowledge of this assignment. Yet, Umar forges the fact for the sake of Abu Bakr and strikes Fatima's womb, which caused her to miscarry Mohsin.
At any rate, Ali (A.S.)was forced to the Mosque. When Fatima Zahra (A.S.)saw this, she followed him and addressed Abu Bakr by saying:
"Do you wish to make me a widow?! By Allah if you do not let him go, I will uncover my head, rip my shirt, and go to my Father's tomb and cry to my Lord..."
So she (A.S.)took Al-Hassan and Al-Hussain's hands and proceeded towards her father's (S) tomb!
When Imam Ali (A.S.)saw the seriousness of the situation, he immediately interfered and said to Salman:
"Prevent Muhammad's daughter (from reaching her father's grave) for surely I can see the outskirts of Medina being sunk into the earth."
Salman later said:
"I was near Lady Fatima when, by Allah, I saw the foundations of the Mosque's walls being elevated up to a point that had a man wanted to go from under them, he would have been able to do so. So I said:
My Mistress, surely Allah, the Exalted, sent your father to be mercy, thus do not become the cause of His wrath. "'
These noble stands of Fatima, forced Abu Bakr and Umar to release Ali (A); Fatima (A.S.)returned home after setting the most honorable example of devotion to her husband.