Why didn’t Imam Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) take the women in Aisha’s army as captives of war, and why didn’t he take Aisha herself as a captive of war if they were disbelievers, according to your claim?
I hope you can reply to us.
In the Name of Allah, the All-Beneficent, the All-Merciful.
May Allah bless Muhammad and his Family and damn their enemies.
The Commander of the Believers (may Allah’s blessings be upon him) was merciful towards Aisha and the people of Basrah similar to how the Messenger of Allah (may Allah’s blessings be upon him and his family) was merciful to the people of Mecca due to a greater advantage, which is to let them remain alive so that Allah may continue putting mankind to trial through these people. Several narrations of Ahlul-Bayt (may peace be upon him) have clarified the wisdom behind Imam Ali’s act, among which is narrated by Sheikh al-Sadouq (may Allah be pleased with him) of Imam al-Sadiq (may peace be upon him), who said:
Ali (may peace be upon him) was only merciful towards them similar to how the Messenger of Allah (may Allah’s blessings be upon him and his family) was merciful to the people of Mecca. And Ali (may peace be upon him) abstained (i.e. didn’t kill them and take them as captives) only because he knew that he would have Shi’a and that the state of falsehood will rule over them. So he wished to be followed (by his enemies) in a similar manner towards his Shi’a, and you have seen the result of this; the method of Ali (may peace be upon him) is being followed. If Ali had killed all the people of Basrah and taken their property, it would have been allowed for him to do so. However, he was merciful towards them so that it may be shown mercy towards his Shi’a after him.
Ilal al-Shara’e’, by Sheikh al-Sadouq, volume 1, page 154, #1
The Office of Sheikh al-Habib