In the year 5 A.H. the Makkans made another great effort to destroy the Muslims with the help of the Jews and the desert tribes of Ghatafan. This great army of 10,000 men, 4000 camels and 300 horses marched towards Madinah under the command of Abu Sufyaan. The coming danger seemed to cast a great gloom over Madinah. When Rasulullah was informed of the approach of the big army he summoned the Sahaba to devise means to meet the great danger.
On the advise of Hazrat Salmaan Faarsi (R.A.), it was decided that a trench be dug. Since Madinah was surrounded on two sides by lava rock and palm groves on the third side it was decided to dig the trench on the open approaches. Rasulullah with the assistance of the Muhajireen and the Ansaar got down to the difficult task of digging the trench. They made the trench 5 meters deep and 5 meters wide.
All the time the Sahaba were marvellously inspired by Rasulullah himself who worked as a labourer amongst them. The enemy approached Madinah and faced a setback when they saw the deep trench around the town. They settled down to a siege. The siege went on for 27 days. They failed to penetrate the defiance of the Muslims.
There was no hand combat since the trench was five meters wide. However, arrows were being showered from both sides. Amr bin Abd, a kuffar fighter, made his horse jump over a narrow portion of the trench. As soon as he reached the other side, Zulfiqar, the sword of Hazrat Ali (R.A.) flashed out and fell upon the enemy and killed him. Hazrat Ali (R.A.) triumphantly raised the war cry Allah hu Akbar- Allah is the Greatest.
On the twenty seventh night of the siege a severe storm approached Madinah. The effect of this severe storm was most devastating for the Kuffar. Their tents were uprooted, goods were blown about, fires were extinguished and the whole kuffar army was in utter fear and in a state of confusion. Under the circumstances the kuffar army fled in disarray.
Contents of the biography of the Prophet Muhammed