Tabari and Company claim that Muawia fought Ali and his descendants killed the members of the Family of Ali. However, other historians tell a different story. Is it possible the real killers of the Family of Ali were Abbasid Caliphs? Please read this excerpt taken from Hugh Kennedy’s book, “When Baghdad Ruled The Muslim World”.
“A woman called Jamra, who had been Mansur’s perfumer and knew some of the darker secrets of the palace, told a chilling story which could have come out of one of the more gruesome episodes of the Arabian Nights. Before he left on the pilgrimage to Mecca on which he died, he gave instructions of a very particular sort to his daughter-in-law, Rita, wife of his son and heir Mahdi, who was at the time in Iran. He gave her the keys to his storerooms but there was one she was only to open when she was absolutely sure of his death. Even then only she and her husband were allowed to go in. When he heard that his father had died, Mahdi hurried to Baghdad to claim his inheritance and Rita told him about the key to the special store. The young couple then went to open the store. They found themselves in a vast and cavernous vaulted chamber in which were laid out the bodies of all the members of the Family of Ali whom he had executed, no doubt well mummified in the dry Mesopotamian air. There were a large number of all ages, from infants to old men. In the ear of each corpse was a label, carefully inscribed with the name and genealogy of the victim. Why the dead caliph had preserved this macabre collection is not at all clear. Perhaps he wanted to remind himself that the potential challengers to his throne really were dead, or perhaps he could not come up with a way of burying them without the danger of their tombs becoming centers of popular devotion.”