Quraish's Army and Leader
in the light of these successive failures, quraish precipitated and accelerated their preparations for a decisive battle with the muslims. at the turn of the year everything was ready for the move. the makkans also decided to take their women along with them for they might arouse them to fight manfully. thus a contingent of three thousand pitched warriors, of whom seven hundred were mailed soldiers and two hundred well-mounted[za'd al-ma'ad 2/92; fath al-bari 7/346] cavalry with three thousand camels and fifteen women marched towards madinah. the general leader was abu sufyan bin harb, the cavalry under the leadership of khalid bin al-waleed assisted by ‘ikrimah bin abi jahl, and bani ‘abd ad-dar were entrusted with the flag.