• Abbas

"Masoom Ali Asghar a.s The youngest martyr of Karbala"


Abdullah Ali al-Asghar ibn Husayn (Tenth of Rajab, 60 AH – Tenth of Muharram, 61 AH) was the youngest child of Hussain ibn-Ali and Rubab (the daughter of the chief of the Kinda Imra al-Qays tribe). Rubaab had two children, Sakina and Ali Asghar. She and her two children accompanied Imaam to Karbala. The fact that Imaam took with him a newly born baby further demonstrates the that his intention was never to engage in any armed rebellion. At Karbala Asghar was only six months old. He is honored by Muslims as the youngest martyr of the Battle of Karbala.

When most of Husain Ibn-Ali’s companions had sacrificed their lives for him, there was a cry heard. It was Husain, who was calling for anyone to help him. He reminded his enemies that he was the Grandson of the Prophet Muhammed [sm]. The same Muhammed [sm], who used to tell the people how much he loved Hussain and his brother Hassan. According to traditions, once when he was preaching in the Mosque of Medina, and when Hussain entered, he had tripped and fell because of the length of his thoub. The Prophet [sm] of God thus, left his preaching and ran to Husain, kissed him and brought him along and showed the people how much love he had.

Ali Asgher, fell from the cradle hearing the cry of his father Husain. Husain Ibn-Ali was called, and when he came, he saw the thirst that was gradually killing Ali Asgher. Therefore, he asked permission of his wife who was the mother of Ali-Asgher to take him to the battle field and ask his enemies for water.

Imaam walked into Bibi Rubaab’s tent. “Rubaab,” he said, “I will take him to Yazeed’s army. Surely they can not possibly deny this little infant a few drops of water?” Rubaab changed Ali Asghar’s clothes. She even tied a small turban on his head. Like any other mother she wanted her son to look at his best in front of strangers. Imaam Hussain took the child and covered him with a cloth to protect him from the scorching sun.

He brought the child into the battlefield. The enemy soldiers assumed that Imam Husain (a.s) was holding the Qur’an in his hand as a prelude to surrender. When Imam Husain (a.s) lifted the cloth, the soldiers gasped with surprise to see an infant. The infant smiled as if taunting the enemy in the face of adversity. Walking up to Yazeed’s soldiers Imaam Hussain said, “”O People! If, in your opinion, Hussain is guilty of any sin or crime, this innocent babe has done nothing to hurt any one of you. It does not even speak, and has not even uttered anything against you or your Amir at Damascus. He is dying of thirst. He had neither milk nor water for the last three days. Would you quench his thirst by a few drops of water? If you suspect that I demand water for myself in the name of the babe, then I will leave it here, if you want, and go easy and you may return it with his thirst quenched.”

Several enemy soldiers were moved by the sight and a murmur of sympathy was heard. Umar ibn Sa’d realized the seriousness of the situation and said, “Beware my soldiers! Do not be beguiled by al-Husain’s word. He is only tricking you into getting some water for himself. Even if al-Husain gets only a sip, it will reinvigorate him and several of us will lose lives.”


Imam Husain (a.s) replied, “I only seek water for the infant, whose condition and agony is before you. Since you fear that I may myself drink the water, I am placing this infant on the ground so that you may yourselves take the child and quench his thirst.”

It is important to note that Imam Husain’s request of help was not because he expected to survive, but because he wanted to show that those surrounding him were stonehearted and cruel and that there was none, at that time, who was ready to help the lone, innocent person against the hordes who had gathered in support of oppression and tyranny.

He put the child on the sands of Kerbala and moved a couple of steps back.You can imagine how hot the desert sand was. Asghar lay there not even wincing. He turned towards the enemy and stared at them. A murmur arose among the soldiers but no one came forward to give water to the baby. Imaam took Asghar in his arms and in a clear voice said, “Asghar, my son, show them how thirsty you are!” Asghar turned his head towards the soldiers. He smiled sweetly. Opened his mouth. Brought out his dry tongue and moved it over his lips. The ultimate sword had been unsheathed ! The soldiers were so moved by this that they could be heard sobbing. Still, they were very afraid of Yazeed and none dared come forward to give water to Ali Asghar.

This eloquent gesture of pure faith did not go unnoticed by Umar bin Sa’d who considered it to be much more powerful than all the eloquent sermons of Imam Husain (a.s) and all the martyrs. He therefore ordered Harmala to interrupt Imam Husain’s words. The cruel Shimr said, “Beware soldiers! Al-Husain is only playing on your sentiments. Do not forget that the emir ibn Ziyad’s order is that not a drop of water should reach al-Husain or his family. Any disobedience of his order will invite immediate punishment.”

It seemed that Asghar was emerging victorious in this confrontation against the might of Yazid. He looked at Hurmala, a famous archer, and said, “Silence Hussain!” Then a terrible thing happened. Hurmala lifted his bow. Aimed an arrow at the child. The arrow flew across the hot desert. There was a hissing sound. Asghar smiled. He lifted his head and arched his neck!! No civilized mind can even imagine what happened next. The hissing sound stopped and Asghar lay still on his father’s arms. Imaam Hussain looked down at Asghar’s neck, he saw the arrow, he saw the neck, he saw the smile and then he could see no more!!! Our Imaam began to feel faint. For a moment everything went dark. He could not see! There was a total silence over Karbala, broken only by the sound of the gentle waves of Furaat. Even the enemy appeared stunned. Slowly Hussain turned round an