Hadith: Ethics Of Killing Women And Children In Jihad

The Hadith series is based on Bill Warner’s book The Political Traditions of Mohammed – The Hadith for Unbelievers. It is a compilation of all the Hadith (Traditions) related to non-Muslims. The Political Traditions of Mohammed contains both sets of Islamic ethics – one for the Muslim and one for the unbelievers.

Chapter 1 Ethics


Killing children in jihad is acceptable. But in other hadiths we find they should not be killed. Both moral positions are Sunna; so both positions are available.

M019,4322 When Mohammed was told that Muslims had killed the chil­dren of their enemies during raids, Mohammed said that it was permissible because “they are from them.”

But here we find that only certain children should be killed.

M019,4457 Yazid B. Hurmus said that Mohammed disapproved of killing children and believed that Muslims should not kill them unless they could tell the difference between a prospective Muslim and a prospective Kafir. In which case, it was permissible to kill the prospective Kafir child and allow the potential Muslim child to live.

Here are two examples that determine the rules of jihad. They contradict each other, so the resolution is that either can be used as needed.

M019,4319 In one of Mohammed’s battles, it was discovered that a woman had been killed by the Muslims; however, he did not approve of killing women and children.

M019,4321 According to Sa’b B. Jaththama, Mohammed said, “They are from them,” when told of the killing of women and children by Muslims during a raid.


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