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Letter 61


A letter from Imam Ali (a) to Kumayl bin Ziyad Nakha'i, expressing his displeasure and rebuking him in leaving his province unguarded and allowing the army of the enemy to enter and carry on loot. He was the Governor of Hayit and had not properly defended the province against the Syrian guerrillas. After their attack and loot he wanted permission of Imam Ali (a) to take revenge upon the Syrian province of Kirkisiya. Imam Ali (a) replied to him in the following letter.


It is wrong to a person to disregard and neglect the duty entrusted to him and try to take up the work entrusted to somebody else and at a time when he is not required to do it. Such an attitude indicates a weak and harmful mentality. Your desire to invade Kirkisiya and to leave your province undefended and unattended shows the confusion of your mind. By such an action you will convert yourself into a kind of bridge which your enemy can cross conveniently to reach your friends.

Thus you will be a useless auxiliary who has neither power nor prestige nor dignity, who cannot stop his enemy's in-roads, nor can crush him, and who cannot defend his subject nor can he be of any use or help to his ruler.