Interview with Alija Izetbegović

Bosnia’s “Wise King”, Alija Izetbegovic’s last interview was conducted with writer-editor Akif Emre. Alija Izetbegovic was the hero of the Bosnian Muslim resistance during the siege of Sarajevo, the man who led his country to independence. He died in Sarajevo, on Sunday, October 19, 2003 at the age of 78.

Akif Emre, formerly editor-in-chief of the World Bulletin, interviewed the legendary Bosnian leader Alija Izetbegovic shortly before his death. Izetbegović, who established a free Bosnian state in the face of overwhelming difficulties and where a lesser man might have failed, is considered by the people as Pater Patriae renowed as the ”Wise King” thanks to his wide knowledge and background in political matters.

Akif Emre: Before you struggled as an intellectual and a political leader, I think that knowing the circumstances of your private and public life may help us understand a lot of things better. So, can we start with what kind of family you were brought up in? What kind of historical and cultural heritage did the family you were brought up in reflect?

Alija Izetbegović : In order to make clear the intellectual and cultural milieu in which I was brought up, I should like to start with the story of a child with the same name as myself “Alija”, the story of a child who was destined to marry a Turkish girl when he grew up. At the end of the 19th century while completing his military service in Uskudar, he married a girl aged 19 whose name was Sadiqah. By her he had several offspring, one of them my late father Mustafa. In 1927, we moved to a city called Bosanski Samac where Muslims were concentrated. This is an area that Sultan Abdul Aziz allocated for Muslims based on “Ush”, a region inhabited by refugees. I lived there with my siblings: two boys and three girls. I was the middle child. My father was connected with trade. But it cannot be said that he was good at it. After he went bankrupt at a time when I was two-years old we repaired to Sarajevo. There were both negative and positive aspects to our settling in Sarajevo. The negative results were due to my father who worked as a small-time clerk. We had a difficult life; our days passed in trouble. The good side was the chance to have an education. I finished high school and University there. After finishing high school, I studied in the Faculty of Agriculture for three years. Then I matriculated in the Law Faculty, where I studied until I graduated in 1956.My childhood was spent in different parts of Yugoslavia. The Yugoslavia of my childhood was different from the Yugoslavia of the Tito era that followed. At that time, the Kara Georgevich dynasty was in power. The founder of this dynasty was the famous Kara Georgevich, who had rebelled against the Turks in 1804, setting in motion a movement for Serbian independence that was finally recognised at the Berlin Congress in 1878, whereupon Serbia emerged as Britain’s ally in the Balkans, a status she has retained ever since, including both world wars. The Kara Georgevich dynasty was installed at the beginning of the 20th century; from 1903 onwards this dynasty was in power; Yugoslavia was firmly in its grip. Serbs, who accounted for 40% of the population, were the dominant ethnic group. The key posts in the administration; the civil service, the army, the police, even education, were all in Serbian hands. To the best of my recollection all the teachers in my secondary school were Serbs. My childhood was passed under a Serbian hegemony. At this time there were three oficially recognised nationalities: Serbs, Croat and Slovenes. Serbs were totally dominant. Muslims were not recognised as a nationality. This situation helps to explain the political position of the Muslims. The economic situation of the Muslims deteriorated with the Land Reform Act; after the First World War. In practical terms land reform aimed at the impoverishment of the Muslims. Under land reform 10 million acres of land belonging to Muslims were confiscated. The result was a process of depopulation; within a few years very rich families had become as poor as beggars. These years were a very hard time for Muslims. In 1918, the states of Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia-Herzegovina united against the possibility of an Italian invasion, thereby forming Yugoslavia (South Slavs) under the Kara George dynasty, to all intents and purposes a Serbian empire, a situation that endured till the German occupation in 1941, whereupon civil war ensued. In the Yugoslav era the Muslims had a foundation the name of which was the Yugoslav Muslim Organisation, abbreviated to YTO. The leader of the organisation was Mehmet Spaho, who was killed by Serbs in 1939. However, he was not able to achieve any concrete results in spite of his being the only person who managed to unite the Muslims. The organisation, which aimed at Bosnian autonomy, managed to gather most of the Muslims under its roof. DEVAMI>>>…

Posted under Röportajlar

Yazanemreakif on November 14, 2016

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Aliya tedirginliği

Aliya İzzetbegoviç’in her vefat yıldönümünde bir tedirginlik kaplar içimi. Aslında anılmaya değer tüm insanlar için de bu tedirginlik geçerli. Onu anlamadan yapılan anma etkinliklerinin anlaşılmasının önünde en büyük engel olmaya başlamasının tedirginliği… Aliya için her vesile yapılan övgülerde ısrarla görmezlikten gelinen husus, onun bir düşünür olarak İslamcılık düşüncesine yaptığı katkının görmezden gelinmesidir. Çağdaş İslam düşüncesinde yeri itibariyle, Aliya’nın kahramanlık öyküleri kadar ciddiyetle ele alnması gereken fikirleridir.

Posted under Düşünce

Yazanemreakif on October 20, 2016

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Srebrenitsa yahut ölüm dikkati

Ölüm dikkati hayata dinamizm katar. Hayata anlam katan en önemli işaret taşlarıdır her bir ölüm. İslam toplumlarında ölüm hayatın içindedir. Hayatla barışık ölüm duygusu, yaşanmışlıkların anlamını yerli yerine oturtur.

Mezarlıkların şehirlerde olması hayata küsmenin değil hayata anlam katan fanilik duygusunun ebedi olana işaret ederken insanı dünyataparlıktan uzaklaştırır. Hayatın olanca çelişkilerine, yaşanan travmalarına, elemlerine karşın yaşama sevincine anlam katar.

Posted under Dünya

Yazanemreakif on July 12, 2016

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