By Pamela Geller
January 16, 2019
Liberal European Islam? Really? The Bosnian capital of Sarajevo, once a symbol of ethnic diversity, has been ethnically cleansed of non-Muslims. It has become an entirely Muslim city, thanks to Bill Clinton’s intervention in the Bosnian war in support of the Bosnian Muslims against the Serbs.
The Middle East was once a Christian region. It has been completely islamized, save the tiny Jewish state of Israel.
I have maintained for years that President Bill Clinton made one of his many catastrophic mistakes when he backed the Muslims in the Bosnian war. Like President Carter backing the Ayatollah Khomeini against the pro-American Shah, the consequences of aiding and abetting Islamic movements are catastrophic, as we have seen in Iran with the recent protests against the Islamic regime. And here is more evidence of that fact.
It also bears mentioning that the leader of the Muslim world, the Mufti al-Husseini, raised Muslim armies for Hitler in Bosnia. Bosnian Muslim leaders were major Nazi collaborators during World War II and the Holocaust. They were complicit in and participated in the Ustasha genocide committed against Serbs, Jews, and Roma. They demanded to be allies of Nazi Germany, and formed two Nazi SS Divisions during the war. The Serbs were our allies in the great war, which made President Bill Clinton’s support of the Bosnian Muslims and abandonment of the Serbs obscene and wrong. And now the Bosnian Muslims are finishing the job that the Mufti started, persecuting and driving out the Catholics of the region.
I continue to take heat for my support of the Serbs (Christians) in Clinton’s Bosnian misadventure. But it is increasingly clear that I have been right all along: we were on the wrong side in that war, and the consequences of Clinton’s perfidy will continue to reverberate in that region.
“Want to Cultivate a Liberal European Islam? Look to Bosnia.” by Riada Asimovic Akyol, The Atlantic, January 13, 2019 (thanks to Vikram):
When French President Emmanuel Macron said last summer that he would create a new “framework and rules” for Islamic institutions in France, he was not alone. Other politicians and thinkers have also been involved in a broader effort to find an articulation of the religion that meshes with what they see as European values.
What is too little noticed, however, is that a tolerant European Islam has already existed for centuries—on the southeastern part of the continent, where Bosnian Muslims, Albanians, Turks, and others see themselves as fully Muslim and fully European. A 2013 Pew Research Center study shows that they’re among the most liberal Muslims in the world. For example, only tiny minorities of surveyed Bosnian Muslims, known as Bosniaks, think adulterers must be stoned and apostates executed, in contrast with large majorities in favor of both stances among Pakistani and Egyptian Muslims.
The case of my people, Bosniaks, is particularly instructive. It shows how attitudes toward Islam can evolve over time and how its adherents—with the help of progressive theologians and intellectuals—can embrace modernity without abandoning their religious identity. Throughout the 20th century, Bosniak thinkers offered creative theological interpretations of Islam that squared with European life. Yet their contributions are not well known in western Europe today. As anti-Muslim populist propaganda fosters paranoia across several European countries, it’s all the more urgent to recover neglected evidence of the compatibility between Islam and modern Europe.