The Shia propagandists will sometimes claim that Umar (رضّى الله عنه) overturned Abu Bakr’s decision (رضّى الله عنه) and gave Fadak back to Ali (رضّى الله عنه). They will use this as “proof” that Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) was wrong, implying that “look, even your Umar gave Fadak back.” This is a blatant lie. Umar (رضّى الله عنه) upheld Abu Bakr’s decision (رضّى الله عنه), and Umar (رضّى الله عنه) repeated the Prophet’s Hadith that Prophets do not leave behind inheritance. Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Abbas (رضّى الله عنه) approached Umar (رضّى الله عنه) in regards to Fadak, and Umar (رضّى الله عنه) allowed them to take control of Fadak as “trustees”–not as “inheritors.” As trustees, Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Abbas (رضّى الله عنه) would be responsible for doling out the charity funds derived from Fadak. As such, the two would be continuing in the steps of the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم), Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه), and Umar (رضّى الله عنه), all of whom were trustees who distributed the revenue from Fadak as charity.

We find proof of this from Sahih Bukhari narrated by Malik bin Aus:

Umar said: “Allah’s Apostle used to spend the yearly expenses of his family out of this property and used to keep the rest of its revenue to be spent on Allah’s Cause. Allah’s Apostle kept on doing this during all his lifetime. I ask you by Allah do you know this?”

They [Ali and Abbas] replied in the affirmative.

Umar then said to Ali and Abbas: “I ask you by Allah, do you know this?”

Umar added: “When Allah had taken His Prophet unto Him, Abu Bakr said, ‘I am the successor of Allah’s Apostle so, Abu Bakr took over that property and managed it in the same way as Allah’s Apostle used to do, and Allah knows that he was true, pious and rightly-guided, and he was a follower of what was right.

“Then Allah took Abu Bakr unto Him and I became Abu Bakr’s successor, and I kept that property in my possession for the first two years of my Caliphate, managing it in the same way as Allah’s Apostle used to do and as Abu Bakr used to do, and Allah knows that I have been true, pious, rightly guided, and a follower of what is right.

“Now you both (Ali and Abbas) came to talk to me, bearing the same claim and presenting the same case; you, Abbas, came to me asking for your share from your nephew’s property, and this man (Ali) came to me asking for his wife’s share from her father’s property. I told you both that Allah’s Apostle said, ‘Our (prophets’) properties are not to be inherited, but what we leave is Sadaqah (to be used for charity).’

“When I thought it right that I should hand over this property to you, I said to you, ‘I am ready to hand over this property to you if you wish, on the condition that you would take Allah’s Pledge and Convention that you would manage it in the same way as Allah’s Apostle used to, and as Abu Bakr used to do, and as I have done since I was in charge of it.’

“So, both of you (Ali and Abbas) said (to me), ‘Hand it over to us,’ and on that condition I handed it over to you. So, I ask you by Allah, did I hand it over to them on this condition?”

The group said, “Yes.”

Then Umar faced Ali and Abbas saying, “I ask you by Allah, did I hand it over to you on this condition?”

They said, “Yes.”

He said, “Do you want now to give a different decision? By Allah, by Whose Leave both the Heaven and the Earth exist, I will never give any decision other than that (I have already given). And if you are unable to manage it, then return it to me, and I will do the job on your behalf.”

(source: Sahih Bukhari,
http://www.searchtruth.com/book_display.php?book=53&translator=1)

Umar (رضّى الله عنه) thus made Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Abbas (رضّى الله عنه) trustees of Fadak on the condition that they accept that they are not the owners of it, nor the inheritors of it. In fact, Umar (رضّى الله عنه) said in the above Hadith that if there is even a bit of doubt on this matter, then they should return Fadak to Umar (رضّى الله عنه) who can act as its trustee instead. The fact that Umar (رضّى الله عنه) made Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Abbas (رضّى الله عنه) the trustees of Fadak was a compromise of immense wisdom. Umar (رضّى الله عنه) gauranteed the goodwill of Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Abbas (رضّى الله عنه), but also Umar (رضّى الله عنه) remained strict on following the Shariah and doing with Fadak what Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) had done as well.

During the Caliphate of Uthman, Marwan (رضّى الله عنه) was made trustee of Fadak and it was he who distributed the revenue as charity. When Ali (رضّى الله عنه) assumed power, he did not reclaim Fadak for himself nor did he give it to his sons, Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) and Hussain (رضّى الله عنه). Thereby, Ali (رضّى الله عنه) maintained the position of Fadak as a charity, and he continued to allow Marwan (رضّى الله عنه) to be its trustee.

The Shia will claim that Ali (رضّى الله عنه) was under Taqiyyah during his Caliphate and this is the reason he did not return Fadak. They say that Ali (رضّى الله عنه) could not restore Fadak to Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) and Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) simply because if he did this, then the people would conspire against him and rebel. In the words of one Shia propagandist,

“So many people at the time rejected the Imamah of Ali. If they didn’t accept his rule, then how would they accept the controversial reconfiscation of Fadak? In fact, it would strengthen the views of those who opposed his Caliphate. Had Imam Ali (as) restored Fadak by force, these people would have reacted in open opposition and spread Fitnah and hatred against Imam Ali. These people would say that Ali was abusing his power as Caliph to give favors to his relatives [i.e. Hasan and Hussain].”

There is no real way to respond to this since it is based on nothing but assumptions. One could easily claim that this is the same reason that Uthman (رضّى الله عنه) did not return Fadak to Fatima’s sons. Perhaps he too did not want to return Fadak because it would damage his image; people would say that he abused his power as Caliph to favor people who were related to him. This would cause people to rebel against him. Actually, during the time of Uthman (رضّى الله عنه), there was a lot of civil strife and people were ready to revolt against Uthman (رضّى الله عنه). Had he given Fadak back to Fatima’s sons, then people would have reacted against him with force, and this would have created Fitnah and hatred against Caliph Uthman (رضّى الله عنه).

On what basis can the Shia claim that their fairy-tale (about Ali [رضّى الله عنه] doing Taqiyyah) is any different than the above fairy-tale and scenario we gave (i.e. about Uthman [رضّى الله عنه] also doing Taqiyyah)? We see that when we play the game of the Shia with history, the sky is the limit!

Perhaps, to extend this example, Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) was also doing Taqiyyah! He was the grandfather-in-law of Fatima (رضّى الله عنها). Perhaps, Fatima (رضّى الله عنها) did not want the people to think that the Caliph was not using nepotism and favoring his relatives. One could even claim that Fatima (رضّى الله عنها) was doing Taqiyyah by pretending to be mad at Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه).

The truth is that Taqiyyah is a useless way to look at history. No matter what the facts are on the ground, the Shia can always claim Taqiyyah. The facts are that Ali (رضّى الله عنه) did not return Fadak to Fatima’s sons, and nothing prevented him from doing so. He did not even make them trustees of Fadak, like how Umar (رضّى الله عنه) made Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Abbas (رضّى الله عنه) trustees of Fadak. In fact, one could argue that Umar (رضّى الله عنه) was the first one to “return” Fadak to Ahlel Bayt and Ali (رضّى الله عنه) didn’t even do this. So shouldn’t the Shia believe Umar (رضّى الله عنه) to be the “good guy” and Ali (رضّى الله عنه) to be the “bad guy”? Umar (رضّى الله عنه) made the Ahlel Bayt the trustees of Fadak while it was a Waqf; Ali (رضّى الله عنه) didn’t even do this!

Such hypothetical scenarios show that the Shia versions of history are nothing but fairy-tales based in double standards.

When Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) was Caliph, then the Shia curse him for not returning Fadak.

When Umar (رضّى الله عنه) was Caliph, then the Shia do not love him even though he appointed Abbas (رضّى الله عنه) and Ali (رضّى الله عنه) as the trustees of Fadak.

When Uthman (رضّى الله عنه) was Caliph, then the Shia curse him for failing to return Fadak to Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) and Hussain (رضّى الله عنه).

When Ali (رضّى الله عنه) was Caliph, then the Shia say that he was doing Taqiyyah and that’s why he didn’t return Fadak.

When Muawiyyah (رضّى الله عنه) was Caliph, then the Shia curse him for not returning Fadak.

When Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) was Caliph, then the Shia say that he didn’t return Fadak again because he was doing Taqiyyah and didn’t want people to accuse him of abusing power.

Do we notice a pattern? All of the above people did the same action [i.e. not return Fadak] but all the people that the Shia love are excused [using Taqiyyah as an excuse], but the people the Shia hate are accused of being tyrants. This is the epitome of intellectual dishonesty. All of the above individuals should be kept to the same standard and judged by their actions.

The Shia are being unjust bigots and supremacists. They believe that the Ahlel Bayt are not to be held to the same standard as other people. This is not unlike white supremacists who lock up blacks for crimes but do not lock up whites for the same crimes; instead, they make up excuses for white criminals and thus exonerate them. A black man will rob a bank and the whites will lock him up. But if a white guy robs a bank, then the white supremacists will make all sorts of fanciful excuses like the bank was owned by evil people who had stolen money and the white man was simply returning the money to the poor, or perhaps he was using Taqiyyah. Thus, people of white wombs are excused, and those born to other wombs are punished for the same crimes.

Likewise, the Shia excuse all those who were born to the wombs of Ahlel Bayt; in fact, the Shia say that they are infallible and cannot commit mistakes. Meanwhile, the people of born of a different wombs, such as the the lineage of Abu Sufyan, they are all cursed and wrong and guilty always.

Is this justice?

Is this consistency?

Why the double standard?

If the Shia are going to hate Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) for not returning Fadak, then they should also hate Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) for not returning Fadak during their respective Caliphates. And then these Shia should simply love Umar (رضّى الله عنه) since he did something that neither Ali (رضّى الله عنه) nor Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) did [i.e. return Fadak].

The truth is that the Shia poured over our Sahih books of Hadith looking for anything they could use against the first three Caliphs. They found a Hadith about how Fatima (رضّى الله عنها) was angry at Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) and they said “aha!” They accepted the story of Fadak since it fit in their paradigm. Fadak may not even have been a part of Shi’ism prior to this discovery in Sahih Bukhari, but then suddenly it became a central part of Shi’ism since it helps their cause so much. It doesn’t matter to the Shia who narrates the Hadith, its Isnad, or anything. It becomes Sahih simply because it supports Shi’ism. [In fact, the Shia base the story of Fadak and Fatima’s anger [رضّى الله عنها] upon a Hadith narrated by Aisha [رضّى الله عنها], whom they call a liar and a fabricator. However, because Aisha [رضّى الله عنها] narrates a Hadith which supports the Shia cause, suddenly her word becomes golden.]

So it was that the Shia were so happy and jumping with joy when they found this Hadith against Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه). However, they failed to realize that they were also destroying their whole religion if they accepted the story of Fadak. They didn’t realize that their own Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) did not give Fadak to Fatima’s descendants either. Thus, if any fault is to be put on the shoulders of Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه), equal fault should be placed on the shoulders of Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Hasan (رضّى الله عنه).

We notice the same phenomenon with other stories that the Shia love to quote. For example, the Shia poured over our Sahih Hadith books and found a Hadith about Umar (رضّى الله عنه) and the incident of the paper and pen. So then the Shia invented the story about how this was when the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) was going to appoint Ali (رضّى الله عنه) as successor. The Shia propagandists will then trumpet this Hadith about the paper and pen, only because to them it makes Umar (رضّى الله عنه) look evil. In fact, if the Ahlus Sunnah had Sunni Hadith that said Umar (رضّى الله عنه) was the devil who even oppressed Allah, then the Shia would even accept this Hadith! Anything so long as it makes the three Caliphs look bad, no matter if acceptance of this Hadith would destroy the fundamentals of their faith in the process. Indeed, the incident of the paper and the pen destroys the faith of Shi’ism because the Shia claim that it was Ghadeer Khumm in which the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) appointed Ali (رضّى الله عنه)! In the incident of the paper and the pen, the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said that he had something new to write, so how could it be the appointment of Ali (رضّى الله عنه) if he was already appointed at Ghadeer Khumm? Suddenly, the pillar of Shi’ism–namely that Ghadeer Khumm proves that we must follow Ali (رضّى الله عنه)–falls down.

That’s OK to the Shia who is content with any story so long as it makes the three Caliphs look bad. If there was a Hadith about anything bad about the three Caliphs, then it becomes Sahih automatically to the Shia, no matter who narrated it. Ronald McDonald or Mickey Mouse could narrate a Hadith, and as long as it made the three Caliphs look bad, the Shia will consider it Sahih!

In conclusion, Ali (رضّى الله عنه) and Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) did not return Fadak; therefore, neither Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه), Umar (رضّى الله عنه), Uthman (رضّى الله عنه), nor Muawiyyah (رضّى الله عنه) can be condemned by the Shia.