On the question point of whether they immigrated or flee out of the city from their enemies, it is an order by God, through the peacful angel Gariel, to immigrate from the city. However, during the immigration away from an enmy, one might flee the scene. Don’t expect an immigration and naturalization service.
medhat: Welcome to the Straight Dope Message Boards, we’re glad to have you with us.
When you comment on a Staff Report, it’s helpful to other readers if you provide a link to the Report in question. In this case, I presume it’s http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2803/whats-the-difference-between-sunni-and-shiite-muslims and my comment on the Hijra (Flight) from Mecca to Medina. No, no one expects immigration and customs, but the question of whether they left voluntarily (or by God’s command) or whether they were forced out is a matter of belief/interpretation. I was trying to be as neutral as possible, and while many believers think they left voluntarily, many others have a different historical perspective.
Thanks for your comments, but since there is already another thread on this topic, I’m going to close this one and suggest that people continue the discussion here: http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=484457