Caliph Abu Bakr's Era
During Abu Bakr's short reign as caliph, Umar served as a chief secretary and advisor to him; and during the Ridda Wars, Umar (along with Khalid ibn Al-Walid) served the caliph as a military strategist and advisor. Due to the delicate political situation in Arabia, Umar initially opposed military operations against the rebel tribes in Arabia, hoping to gain their support in the event of an invasion by the Romans or the Persians. Later, however, he came to agree with Abu Bakr's strategy to crush the rebellion by force. By late 632 CE, Khalid ibn Walid had successfully united Arabia after consecutive victories against the rebels. During his own reign, Umar would mostly adopt the policy of avoiding wars and consolidating his power in the incorporated lands rather than expanding his empire through continuous warfare. Prior to the Battle of Yamamah, Umar pressured Abu Bakr to recall Khalid, who had killed Malik ibn Nuwayrah, a tribe chief and state dissident. Umar was reported by Malik's brother that Malik, a Muslim, was killed by Khalid because he wanted to marry his wife Layla bint al-Minhal, a renowned beauty in Arabia. Abu Bakr refused to accept Umar's opinion, and Umar continued to insist on Khalid's dismissal even after Khalid's conquest of Iraq. This became a major issue between Abu Bakr and Umar, and a spacious chapter in Islamic history. Umar advised Abu Bakr to compile the Quran in the form of a book, after 300 Hafizs (memorizers) of the Quran died in the Battle of Yamamah.
Abu Bakr appointed Umar as his successor prior to the caliph's death in 634 CE.
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“It is not an era of repose. We have used up all our inherited freedom. If we would save our lives, we must fight for them.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)