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History

Yazid exonerated himself of the killing of al-Husayn (as)

According to some texts, Yazid ibn Mu‘awiyah claimed himself to be innocent of killing Imam al-Husayn (as). They say Yazid cursed ‘Ubayd Allah ibn Ziyad and laid the blame on him for this heinous crime.63

Response

Firstly, according to evidence previously cited regarding this issue, there is convincing testimony to substantiate that Yazid ibn Mu‘awiyah played a direct role in killing Imam al-Husayn (as). It has already been pointed out that some people have made intense efforts to deceive others by inventing stories for the sake of justifying Yazid’s despicable actions.

The fantasy that Yazid was not responsible for killing Imam al-Husayn (as) must be regarded as an effort by ill-intentioned people to deceive others because, after the event of Karbala, there were numerous public disclosures of Yazid’s flagrant atrocities given by eye witnesses.

These public disclosures caused the people to become disgusted with Yazid. As a result, they rebelled against him. Yazid therefore found himself forced to lay the blame on another. By making Ibn Ziyad the scapegoat, he intended to exonerate himself from this savage crime and dissipate the people’s anger.

Secondly, according to historical documents, a number of the Prophet’s (S) companions such as Imam al-Husayn (as), ‘Abd Allah ibn ‘Abbas, ‘Abd Allah ibn Hanzalah and most of the nobles of Medina have associated Yazid with moral corruption and debauchery. When we have indubitable testimony from such a group of highly respected companions of the Holy Prophet (S) confirming Yazid’s immoral and corrupt nature, baseless claims of his innocence cannot be accepted.

Notes:

63. Ibn Athir, Al-Kamil fi al-Tarikh, vol. 3, p. 300.

Adapted from: "The Uprising of Ashura and Responses to Doubts" by: "‘Ali Asghar Ridwani"