Infanticides Among Arab Tribes

- Published in Muslim World League Journal Makkah On April 2017
Infanticides among Arab Tribes
    In seventh century Arabia before Islamic culture became established
Female infanticide was widely practiced. The Quran has given two main reasons for this inhuman behavior: Slay not your children because of poverty We provide sustenance for you and for them. (Quran-6/151)
    In another verse Allah said: They are losers who have slain their children foolishly (Quran-6/140).  These verses include the killing of
children both sons and daughters. Imam Razi explaining the verse said: The bestowal of a son is a great blessing from Allah, if he tries to kill him is a great loss. On the commitment of this great evil he deserves to be punished from God. People do talk he killed his son fearing he would eat his food. God gives provision to everyone and produces milk in the bosom of a woman before the birth of child.
    Imam Razi further observed that the birth is the major cause of love and affection in the family if he kills the child he kills family ties. It is, therefore, among the big sins and since he deserves severe punishment.
   In a report of Ibn al-Munzir and Abu Al-Sheikh: Ekramah said This verse has been sent down who buried their daughter s alive. There were the tribes of Mudhir and Rabea.
    In ignorance age tribal wars were common. One tribe used ti plunder the other tribe and loot them. They carried their daughters and made them slaves. The fear of their daughters taken as slave was considered a great  insult for that tribe. Thus female infanticide took place to avoid shame and insult. Qatada said in ignorance age those who feared their daughters  will be taken as captive hence they used to kill them.
    Allah said: And they assign daughters unto Allah. Glorified and Exalted is He. And when any of them receives tidings of the birth of a female, his face darkens and he is filled with inward grief.
He hideth himself from the folk because of the evil of that whereof he had tiding. Should he keep it in humiliation or bury her in the ground. Certainly evil is their decision. (Quran-16/58,59) 
        Those who held the angels as the daughters of Allah were tribe of. Khuza,ah and Kananh. Glorified is He.  There is nothing like Him, And He is the All Hearer and All Seer. He is the First and the Last He is the Doer of What He intends. He created angels from Noor (light).                  
     Those pagans who attributed daughters to Allah himself hated daughters and wished only male issues. The birth of daughter was humiliation to them. They hid their faces from their folk and the grief overtook them inwardly. The tribes who buried their daughters alive were Mudhir, Khuza’ah and Tamim. It is also said they buried them because of their poverty or fear of being taken as prisoner and reduced to slave girls.
Their imprisonment to them were everlasting humiliation. But the way they buried their daughters alive was the most heinous. They left her till
she grew up to the age of six years. Then father dug a pit in the desert. He asked his wife to dress her and tell her that she is taking her to relatives. When she brought her to that pit. The father standing behind her told her to see that pit when she saw they both pushed her in that pit and through dust over her till the girl was buried.
    But after Islam took hold Arabia, this heinous crime was declared illegal and during the era of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and Sahaba gradually the tables turned, the people who hated daughters loved their birth. In Islam the Bridegroom pays dowry. Gradually it is raised so high that now in Arab nations it has reached up to  more than hundred thousand Dirham or Riyals.   .   
    Female Infanticide in Other Nations
   Female is a  major cause of concern  in several nations as China and India. Particularly in India among the  Hindu nation the tradition is that the father of bride has to pay a big sum to bridegroom before marrying his daughter to him. This tradition is very hard upon most the people leading an average life. The modern of selective abortion is often discussed as closely related issue with female infanticide. Now the gynecologists can tell in the fourth or fifth month that the fetus is of a girl or male. Hence the average people do not want the birth of girl, they go for abortion..
    In 1978 anthropologist Laila Williamson in a summary of data she had collated on how widespread infanticide was among both tribal and developed and civilized nations, found that infanticide had occurred in every continent and was carried out by groups ranging from hunter gatherers to highly developed societies.
    “In 1990, Amartya Sen writing in the New York Review Books estimated that there were 100 million fewer women in Asia than would be expected, and this amount of missing women tells us quietly a terrible story of inequality and neglect leading to the excess, mortality of women.”
    It is evident that mortality of women was due to female infanticide.  
    In European countries, the female infanticide was controlled when they found their population is being decreased. But it caused hundreds of thousands unmarried mothers.         .
- By Ahmad Wahaj Al-Siddiqui Al-Taimi.