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The photos below were published in the weekly magazine, Svijet, or World, in Sarajevo, Bosnia, in 1997.
The photos were taken during World War II, but they provide a glimpse of the truth about what really happened during the recent Bosnia war, and what is happening today. The issue of what *really* happened in Bosnia is crucial to understanding the role of aggressive Islam in all parts of the world, and of those who sponsor it.
During the Bosnian war we were
constantly told by the media that the Serbs were racists
who persecuted Muslims and fought against the supposedly
moderate Bosnian Muslim government of Alijah Izetbegovic. Citizens in
the NATO countries believed this media fiction about
Bosnia because it was all they heard and saw, or thought
they saw. And seeing is believing.
This SS division was called Handzar, which means Scimitar, the curved sword of the Ottoman Empire. The US-backed Bosnian leader, Mr. Izetbegovic, was enamored of Handzar. He even set up an army division, commanded by Islamic terrorists from Albania, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Arab countries, and called it Handzar. According to a recent Dutch report, the US sponsored the Islamic terror specialists who traveled to Bosnia to train and indoctrinate Izetbegovic's troops. (1)
Svijet's Handzar nostalgia articles were published October 26th, and November 2nd, 9th, 16th and 23rd, in 1997. The captions have been translated verbatim. We wrote some explanatory notes which appear in red.
The translation was done by the linguist and culture historian, Peter Maher (2), who also provided information for the notes. When we were about to post this page, Prof. Maher pointed out that we hadn't explained the significance of the fez, the hat which was part of the Handzar uniform. The fez was widely worn in the Ottoman Empire and symbolized both Muslim fanaticism and Ottoman power, under which Bosnian Muslims ruled over Orthodox Christian Serbs and Jews. These Christians and Jews were what is known under Muslim religious law as dhimmi people; their inferior status had legal sanction. By setting up a division of Muslim troops wearing the fez, the Nazis were appealing to Islamic fanaticism, and promising a return to the Ottoman spirit. (To show how seriously Himmler and Hitler took their alliance with Islamic fanatics, one of Svijet's captions makes a special point that even the Handzar division's German commanding officer was required to wear the fez.)
Regarding the Handzar division, the "Encyclopedia of the Holocaust" writes:
The civilians whom Handzar massacred were mainly Serbs and Roma ('Gypsies'). They also slaughtered Jews, wherever they could find them.
When Mr. Izetbegovic resurrected this Waffen SS division he was telling Serbs, Roma and Jews: "Handzar is back!"
Jared Israel, Petar Makara and Dan Chukurov
HIMMLER WAS THEIR DEFENDER
Emperor's Clothes Note: All English text is a translation from the original Serbo-Croatian except for Jared Israel's comments, which are in red.
Footnotes & Further Reading:
1) "Dutch Report: US Sponsored Foreign Islamists In Bosnia," at http://emperors-clothes.com/analysis/used.htm
2) Peter Maher, Professor of Linguistics,
Emeritus, Northeastern Illinois University, is author of
"'Kosovo' or 'Kosova'? What's in a Name?" at
3) To read the German Foreign Ministry's record of the meeting
between the Mufti and Hitler, go to
The apparent source of the text is an interview
translated by Palestinian Media Watch, which attributes it to "Al Sharq al Awsat, a London Arabic daily,
reprinted in the Palestinian daily Al Quds, Aug, 2, 2002."
I have found PMW to be a useful and accurate source, but since this is a damning statement, I would be more comfortable without the ellipses (...) and with a photo copy of the original. Why do I call Arafat's statement damning? Because, if accurately quoted, it means that, in addressing Arab media, Arafat was not the least defensive about associating himself with Haj Amin al-Husseini. Rather, he boasted of their connection, meaning that he viewed that connection as a mark of status for his Arab audience. And he mentions the charge that Haj Amin was an ally of the Nazis casually, meaning he is not worried that it will offend his Arab audience.
Absent a full translation of the original text, how should we evaluate this politically defining quotation?
a) To begin we might ask, is it reasonable to believe that Arafat was able to evaluate the accuracy of the charge that Haj Amin was "an ally of the Nazis"?
The answer is, first of all, that Haj Amin was not an ally of the Nazis, he was a leading Nazi. The transcript of his meeting with Hitler (3) suggests Haj Amin was Hitler's favorite Arab.
Did Arafat know that? He was born in 1929, so he was 19 in 1948, when Haj Amin al-Husseini was a key Arab leader in the war against Israel and when, according to the quote, Arafat was "one of his troops." At that time Haj Amin al-Husseini's Nazism was a matter of common knowledge, especially among Arabs. After all, his Arab Higher Committee had operated out of Berlin offices during the war. Even in the US his Nazism was fairly well-known. Consider this New York Post editorial from 1948:
As the Post noted, "In August, 1945, Yugoslavia asked that the ex-Mufti be placed on the official list of war criminals."
All considered, it is certain that Arafat and other Palestinian Arab leaders knew the politics of their leader.
b) Regarding the validity of the Arafat quote, we might ask: is there other evidence, especially from Arab sources, that Arafat boasted that he was linked to the Mufti? Yes there is. The following is from Al Ahram, the semi-official newspaper of the Egyptian government, writing after Arafat's death:
So there you have it. Independent of the quotation form the interview, whose validity we are considering, we know that a) Arafat had to be aware that the Mufti was a top Nazi and b) he stressed their connection. This verifies the point made in the quotation, i.e., that Arafat celebrated - and expected Arabs to respect - his boasted connection with a top Nazi.
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