Slavery in modern day Mauritania. Black African slaves are still kept and treated badly by Arab Muslims.
Far from ignoring or condemning slavery, Islam condones the horrible institution like no other religion. Muslims are encouraged to live in the way of Muhammad, who was a slave owner and trader. He captured slaves in battle. He had sex with his slaves. And he instructed his men to do the same. The Quran actually devotes more verses to making sure that Muslim men know they can keep women as sex slaves than it does to telling them to pray five times a day.
One of the myths about Islamic slavery is that it was not race-based, but in fact it was. Muhammad’s father-in-law, Umar, in his role as caliph, declared that Arabs could not be taken as slaves and even had all Arab slaves freed on his deathbed. This helped propel the vast Islamic campaign to capture slaves in Africa, Europe and Asia for importing into the Middle East.
Jabir (Allah be pleased with him) reported: There came a slave and pledg- ed allegiance to Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) on migration; he (the Holy Prophet) did not know that he was a slave. Then there came his master and demanded him back, whereupon Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) said: Sell him to me. And he bought him for two black slaves, and he did not afterwards take allegiance from anyone until he had asked him whether he was a slave (or a free man)
Sahih Muslim Book 10 Number 3901
Qur’an (33:50) – “O Prophet! We have made lawful to thee thy wives to whom thou hast paid their dowers; and those (slaves) whom thy right hand possesses out of the prisoners of war whom Allah has assigned to thee” This is a special command that Muhammad handed down to himself, allowing himself virtually unlimited sex. Others are limited to four wives, but may also have sex with an unlimited number of slaves, as the following verse make clear:
Qur’an (23:5-6) – “..who abstain from sex, except with those joined to them in the marriage bond, or (the captives) whom their right hands possess…” This verse allows the slave-owner to have sex with his slaves.
Qur’an (4:24) – “And all married women (are forbidden unto you) save those (captives) whom your right hands possess.” Even sex with married slaves is permissible.
Bukhari (80:753) – “The Prophet said, ‘The freed slave belongs to the people who have freed him.’”
Bukhari (62:137) – An account of women taken as slaves in battle by Muhammad’s men after their husbands and fathers were killed. The woman were raped with Muhammad’s approval.
Bukhari (47.765) – A woman is rebuked by Muhammad for freeing a slave girl. The prophet tells her that she would have gotten a greater heavenly reward by giving her to a relative (as a slave).
Bukhari (34:351) – Muhammad sells a slave for money. He was thus a slave trader.
Muslim 4112 – A man freed six slaves on the event of his death, but Muhammad reversed the emancipation and kept four in slavery to himself. He cast lots to determine which two to free.
A tiny verse in one of the earliest verses in the Quran 90:13 does say that freeing a slave is good, however, this was “revealed” at a time when the Muslim community was miniscule and several of their new and potential recruits were either actual slaves or newly freed slaves. Many of these same people, and Muhammad himself, later went on to become owners and traders of slaves, both male and female, as they acquired the power to do so. The language of the Quran changed to accommodate slavery, which is why this early verse has had negligible impact on slavery in the Islamic world.
Contrary to popular belief, converting to Islam does not automatically earn a slave his freedom. By contrast, Christianity was a major impetus in the movement to abolish the age-old institution of slavery. Yet, abolition had to be imposed on the Islamic world by the West.
As mentioned, Muhammad, the most revered figure in the religion, practiced and approved of slavery. Even his own pulpit was built with slave labor. Caliphs since have had harems of hundreds, sometimes thousands of young girls and women brought from Christian lands and other places to service the desires of Islam’s religious equivalent of the pope in the most demeaning fashion.
The Indian and Persian people suffered mightily as well – as did Africans. At least 17 million slaves (mostly black women and children) were brought out of Africa by Islamic traders – far more than the 11 million that were taken by the Europeans. However, these were only the survivors. As many as 85 million other Africans were thought to have died en route. Most telling, perhaps, is that slavery is still practiced in the Sudan, Niger, Mauritania and a few other corners of the Muslim world – and you won’t see any of those Muslim apologists (who shamelessly repeat the lie that Islam abolished slavery) doing or saying anything about it!