Muhammad: Islam's First Great General

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University of Oklahoma Press, 2007 - Biography & Autobiography - 255 pages
That Muhammad succeeded as a prophet is undeniable; a prominent military historian now suggests that he might not have done so had he not also been a great soldier.

Best known as the founder of a major religion, Muhammad was also Islam's first great general. While there have been numerous accounts of Muhammad the Prophet, this is the first military biography of the man.

In Muhammad: Islam's First Great General, Richard A. Gabriel shows us a warrior never before seen in antiquity--a leader of an all-new religious movement who in a single decade fought eight major battles, led eighteen raids, and planned thirty-eight other military operations. Gabriel's study portrays Muhammad as a revolutionary who introduced military innovations that transformed armies and warfare throughout the Arab world.

Gabriel analyzes the environment in which Muhammad lived and the religion he inspired as they relate to his military achievements. Gabriel explains how Muhammad changed the social composition of Arab armies by replacing traditional ways of fighting with a new command structure.

Muhammad's transformation of Arab warfare enabled his successors to establish the core of the Islamic empire--an accomplishment that, Gabriel argues, would have been militarily impossible without Muhammad's innovations. Richard A. Gabriel challenges existing scholarship on Muhammad's place in history and offers a viewpoint not previously attempted.


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Interesting book. Well written. One problem is that it does not reference many primary sources so that we can verify if we ever doubted. None the less,this is quite good. 4/5

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

This book is as a good book because he has a few errors that mean a ot to us muslims. He says that we consider Muhammad god that is very wrong so if you chose to read this book dont take everything as a fact. We do not consider him a god and that is clear. And he has some other errors so if you have any questions contact a muslim person knowladgeable about islam and the prophet muhammad and ask them because i dont really trust this author and nor should you if you were to read this book. And again dont be afraid to ask about the prophet to anyone who knows about muhammad. Thankyou for reading this IMPORTANT reveiew. 


The Land of Arabia
The Strategic Setting
Arab Warfare
Battle of Badr
Battle of Uhud
Battles of Kheibar and Muta
Conquest of Mecca
Battle of Hunayn
The Tabuk Expedition and the Death of Muhammad
Muhammads Military Legacy

Battle of the Ditch

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About the author (2007)

Richard A. Gabriel is Distinguished Adjunct Professor in the Department of History and War Studies at the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario.

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