Praise be to God, while researching for our past thread we have stumbled upon narrations showing that `Ali ibn abi Talib (ra) wished to appoint `Abdullah ibn `Umar (ra) as the Emir of Syria al-Sham. There are several reports on this matter and I shall begin with what was authentically narrated.
(1) Tarikh Dimashq by ibn `Asakir, volume 31 page 181:
[…from Suffiyan, from `Umar bin Nafi`, from his father, from ibn `Umar that he said: `Ali ibn abi Talib sent after me so I came to him and he told me: “O abu `Abdul-Rahman, you are a man who is obeyed by the people of al-Sham, so march to them as I have appointed you as their Emir.” so I said: “By Allah, I remind you of my closeness to the Messenger (SAWS) and my companionship to him, that you would pardon me (from this matter).” `Ali didn’t accept it and I asked my sister Umm al-Mu’mineen Hafsa to help (convince him) but he still insisted, so I went to Makkah during the night and they told him: “He went to al-Sham.” so he sent after me and the rider took-off in haste to catch up to me, then Hafsa sent to him that: “He didn’t leave to al-Sham, he only left to Makkah.” (In Siyar A`lam al-Nubala’ it was added) So `Ali calmed down.]
[…from Layth, from Nafi` that he said: When `Uthman was killed, `Ali went to ibn `Umar and said: “You are loved by the people, so march to al-Sham.” but ibn `Umar said: “By my closeness and companionship to the Prophet (SAWS) and by the family ties that exist between us (excuse me of this).” so he never asked again.]
[… and my uncle Mus`ab ibn `Abdullah told me: `Abdullah ibn `Umar went to Makkah after the death of `Uthman during the night, and when `Ali woke up he realized he was missing, and he thought that he had went and gone to al-Sham, so he went to the markets of the after-noon and said: “Bring me the camels.” and he ordered that they be gathered so he can send them to bring him back, but then his daughter Umm Kulthoum(Wife of `Umar) sent to him that: You shall not succeed in bringing him as he did not head to al-Sham but he had left for Makkah, and I ask that you excuse him on my behalf.” so he stopped asking for him.]
(2) al-Fitan by Nu`aym bin Hammad, page 88:
[ibn al-Mubarak told us, from `Abdullah ibn Nafi`, from his father, from ibn `Umar may Allah be pleased with them, he said: When `Uthman was killed he was met by `Ali may Allah be pleased with them, so he said: “O abu `Abdul-Rahman, you are a man who is obeyed by the people of al-Sham, and I see the Fitnah boiling, so go as I have made you an Emir over them.” so he said: “By Allah I remind you of your closeness to the Messenger (SAWS) and my companionship to him, would you excuse me of this.” but he refused, so he asked Hafsa may Allah be pleased with her to intercede on his behalf but he still refused, then he went to Makkah and he sent after him, they dashed to their camels quickly and he thought that he sought al-Sham but was told that he went to Makkah so he calmed down.]
(3) Siyar al-A`lam al-Nubala’ by Shams-ul-Deen al-Dhahabi, volume 3 page 224:
Very close to the second narration of ibn `Asakir.
Very close to the first narration of ibn `Asakir.
[…Khalid bin Samir said: Musa bin Talha escaped al-Mukhtar, so he said: May Allah have mercy on ibn `Umar! I believe that he remained true in Islam without ever changing, by Allah Quraysh never was able to provoke him. (…) and `Ali had went to ibn `Umar and said: “These are our books, ride with them to al-Sham.” he replied: “By Allah and by Islam (don’t make me do this).” he said to him: “By Allah you shall ride.” so he said: “I remind you of Allah and the last day.” he said: “By Allah you shall ride whether you like it or not.” he said: so he ran away to Makkah.]
So not only is it established that `Ali (ra) praised `Umar (ra) and admitted his superiority, and named his children after him, and gave him his daughter in marriage, and helped in judicial matters among other things… we add on top of it, that `Ali ibn abi Talib (ra) saw great virtue and leadership qualities in his son `Abdullah ibn `Umar (ra) that he found him worthy of taking the Imarah of al-Sham and running their affairs and he insisted on it.
By Hani Posted by 13S2010