Imam Ali,s Instructions

11.Part of instructions to his marshal

Part of instructions to his marshal when
Imam Ali (a) sent him to a battle
When you approach an enemy or when he approaches you, make it a point to keep your army on a hilltop or at the foot of a mountain or on the side of a river so that you easily watch the movements of your enemy. Do not involve the whole army in the encounter, allow only a few units to take part in the engagements. If your army is not on a hilltop then post your scouts and guards on high vantage points and along the line of fortification so that the enemy may not take you unawares.
Remember that the commanders of an army are its guardians and the eyes of these commanders are the scouts.
Try to avoid dissensions and do not cause superiority or inferiority complexes to take root among your officers and in your ranks. Wherever and whenever you camp, make it a point that all of your officers and soldiers camp in the same locality and are provided with the same comforts and conveniences and whenever you march, always march in company formation. If you want to rest during the night draw a circular formation of your lancers round your army and do not let sound sleep overpower you.

12.His instructions

When Imam Ali (a) sent an expedition of 3000 soldiers under Ma\’qil bin Qays Riyahi against
the Syrians, he issued the following instructions.
Always keep the fear of Allah in your mind. Remember that you have to meet Him one day (let the fear of Allah guide you in all your activities against man) and your end will be towards Him and towards none else.
Do not fight against anybody unless he wishes to fight against you. During winters travel in the mornings and give your army a rest in the afternoons. Do rush through journeys (unless absolutely necessary). Travel by easy stages, and do not tire out your army during the journey. Do not travel during the early part of the evening because Allah has meant this to be time for rest and comfort and not for march and exertion, make use of these hours to give rest to your body and mind.
When you have rested then begin your march with trust and faith in Allah in the early hours of the morning.
When you face your enemy, stand in the midst of your army, never alone. Do not be over-anxious to fight and do not behave as if you craving for a combat or aspiring for an encounter, but at the same time do not try to avoid your enemy or to evade an engagement as if you are afraid or nervous. Keep my orders in mind and act accordingly until you get further instructions. Do not let the hatred and enmity of your opponents force you to a combat, do not begin a battle even if the enemy so desires unless you have explored every avenue of amity and good-will and have exhausted all the chances of a peaceful settlement.

13.Instructions to two of his commanders

Instructions to two of his commanders
I have appointed Malik bin Harith as chief of the staff over you and the armies under you. Take your orders from him and obey him. Treat him as if he is your shield and armour because there is no risk of laziness or lethargy from him, nor of nervousness and blunders nor of any error of commission and omission. 

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