FlashBack: How Bosnian Muslims Reformed Nazi SS Division

Posted on November 2, 2011 by

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The Bosnian Muslim Government and Army of Alija Izetbegovic reformed and revived the Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Division from World War II. This startling fact was first revealed by British journalist and military analyst Robert Fox in the Daily Telegraph news report from December 29, 1993.

The report was entitled “Albanians and Afghans Fight for the Heirs to Bosnia’s SS Past” and was reported from Fojnica in central Bosnia. This was one of the most remarkable stories to emerge during the Bosnian civil war. The Bosnian Muslim Government and Army had reformed a Nazi SS Division right under the eyes of the U.S. and Western media. And only Robert Fox caught it. That is a remarkable example of media censorship and collusion to cover-up the facts. And this was accomplished the U.S. and Western media.

This story started when Robert Fox went to investigate the horrific murder of two Roman Catholic priests in Fojnica. Bosnian Muslim Army troops had executed two priests, Nikola Milicevic, 39, a parish priest, and Mato Migic, 56 , a vicar, were Franciscan priests who had been murdered by Bosnian Muslim soldiers at the Holy Spirit monastery, execution-style. While investigating this war crime, Fox soon discovered that the Bosnian Muslim Army had reformed a Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Division from World War II, the 13th Waffen SS Division Handzar or Handschar, “dagger”, which is derived from the Arabic word khanjar, the term for a curved, double-sided Ottoman knife prevalent in Arabic and Muslim countries.

    (Bosnian Muslims in Sarajevo threatened to reform and to revive the Bosnian Muslim Nazii SS Division Handzar and to cut off the heads of Serbian leaders. The cover of Novi Vox magazine, October, 1991 with the headline: “The Handzar Division is ready!”)

This is how Fox described his encounter with the reformed Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Division:

“’DOCUMENTS!’ shouted a man in a beret with an insignia in green Arabic script outside the UN house in the Bosnian mountain town of Fojnica. He was hostile and demanded our presence at the police station.

Later the police chief apologised, but made clear that authority had passed to the men with the Koranic texts hanging from their fatigues. …

These are the men of the Handzar division. ‘We do everything with the knife, and we always fight on the frontline,’ a Handzar told one UN officer.

Up to 6000-strong, the Handzar division glories in a fascist culture. They see themselves as the heirs of the SS Handzar division, formed by Bosnian Muslims in 1943 to fight for the Nazis. Their spiritual model was Mohammed Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem who sided with Hitler.”

Fox personally observed that Albanian Muslims were part of the recreated Handzar Division, which was also made up of veterans, mujahedeen, from Afghanistan and Pakistan. Fox reagraded the presence of Albanian Muslims in the division as evidence that the conflict would spread to Kosovo, which Albanian Muslim separatists sought to detach from Serbia and to create a Greater Albania.

How was this event missed by the mainstream media? Why was Robert Fox the only Western journalist to report on the reformed Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Division? What does this cover-up and media censorship reveal about the U.S. and Western media?

The Bosnian Muslim faction had threatened to reform and to recreate the Handzar Nazi SS Division. In October, 1991, the Bosnian Muslim magazine Novi Vox in Sarajevo, in issue no. 3, well over half a year before the civil war broke out in 1992, published a front-cover illustration showing a Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS officer in the Handzar Division stepping on the decapitated and bloody heads of Serbian leaders, including Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic. The caption read: “The Handzar Division is ready!” Another headline announced: “The Fourth Reich is coming—Welcome!” This revival of Bosnia’s Nazi and SS genocidal past was censored, suppressed, and covered-up in the U.S. and the Western media. But the Bosnian Serb population got the message very clearly.

   (The original Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Handzar Division, shown above in 1943, cosisted of up to 18,000 Bosnian Muslims and 300 Albanian Muslims)

The Bosnian Muslims were reviving the Handzar Nazi SS Division which they had formed in World War II and they were planning to decapitate Bosnian Serb Orthodox Christians. This was hardly a reassuring message about a supposed secular, multi-ethnic society and religious and ethnic tolerance and pluralism. In fact, the message was an incitement to genocide and to racism and racist and religious hatred and enmity. The Bosnian Muslim Government and Army proved good on these threats. The Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Division Handzar was indeed reformed and recreated and was made a part of the Bosnian Muslim Army.

The original news account by Robert Fox in the Daily Telegraph was dismissed and rejected by the mainstream media. The news account was de-emphasized, not totally censored. Everyone missed the story. Marko Attila Hoare even argued that there was no evidence for the recreation of the “Balkan Islamofascist Division” in “Monty Python and the Balkan Islamofascist Division.” Hoare claimed that evidence for the reformed Nazi SS Division was “based entirely on Fox’s article” and dismissed the story about the “alleged reincarnation” of the Handzar Division. Hoare heaped scorn and ridicule on Fox and anyone who gave credence to the news report and maintained that “Monty Python is a much better source for accurate historical information.” Hoare used terms like “it is conceivable” and “alleged” and “supposedly recreated Handzar division.”

In short, the alleged recreation of the Handzar Division is merely “a popular myth of the anti-Muslim lobby.” Hoare then stated that “no other journalist or anyone else seems to have noticed the existence” of the reformed Handzar division, implying that it was untrue and that the recreated Nazi SS formation did not exist. Fox was merely retelling hearsay, second-hand rumors and nonsense. Hoare implied that no evidence or corroboration existed for the reformation of the Handzar SS division. The only evidence was “a single newspaper article written by Robert Fox” according to Hoare.

(On the right, Kosovar Albanian Muslim Nazir Hodic, a member of the Nazi SS Division Handzar in Bosnia. On the left is Rudi Sommerer, the commander of the Nazi SS Albanian Battalion, 6/28 in Handzar. Hodic is shown wearing the Albanian skull cap issued by the SS with a Nazi swastika on his collar.)

But is this really the case? Is there no factual evidence or corroboration to substantiate the existence of a reformed and recreated Nazi SS Division by the Bosnian Muslim Government of Alija Izetbegovic? Is Monty Python’s Flying Circus and a comedy sketch from 1970 about “Mr. Hilter” and “Heimlich Bimmler” and “Ron Vibbentrop” a much better source for accurate historical information and scholarship and factual analysis?

Instead of relying on dated Monty Python reruns from 1970, what if we analyzed the transcripts from the war crimes tribunal at the Hague, the ICTY? What do the transcripts from the ICTY reveal? During the trial testimony in the war crimes trial of Bosnian Muslim military commander Sefer Halilovic in 2005, the factual existence of a reformed Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Division was confirmed and proved beyond any doubt. Everyone knew about the existence of the reformed and recreated Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Handzar Division except Marko Attila Hoare.

In 2005, Bosnian Muslim military commander Sefer Halilovic was tried for war crimes by the ICTY, particularly for the massacres committed by Bosnian Muslim soldiers against Croatian civilians and POWs in central Bosnia in 1993. In central Bosnia, in September, 1993, Bosnian Muslim soldiers massacred 32 Bosnian Croat civilians and POWs in Grabovica and 41in Uzdol. Those murdered by Bosnian Muslim soldiers were mainly elderly and unarmed Croat civilians, men, women, and children. These acts of mass murder and genocide were part of the Bosnian Muslim military action known as Operation Neretva 93.

The Bosnian Muslim commander of the 6th Corps of the Bosnian Muslim Army, Lt. Salko Gusic, stated under oath in a court of law that there indeed was a unit in the Bosnian Muslim Army known as the “Handzar Divizija”, i.e., the Handzar Division. The prosecution showed him an army order to the Handzar Division which he read at the trial. In Gusic’s testimony, he acknowledged nonchalantly that there was a unit or formation of the Bosnian Muslim Army called the Handzar Division.

Transcript #050203ED, page 84:

“Q. Thank you, Mr. Gusic. Can I now refer you to the next document. Could you please tell us the second one.
MS. CHANA: That’s 65 ter 39, Your Honour.
A. This is an order whereby the following units, the Handzar Divizija, the Silver Fox Unit, become part of the special purposes detachment Zulfikar. This order was written in connection with the decision of the Main Staff of the 21st of August in Zenica with a view to making larger units out of smaller ones. And this is an organisational order in form; although, personally I think that this kind of order shouldhave been signed by the commander since it relates to organisation.
We can also see it as an order on resubordination, although it doesn’t state so explicitly. Rather, this unit is ordered to enter the organic composition. So it is an organisational order after all. It should contain certain elements about manpower levels, replenishment, and so on. Although it can be carried out in its current form, when it relates to the transfer of a unit from one composition to another. The other elements can be ordered later on.”

A Bosnian Muslim police officer, Emin Zebic, testified that he heard about an Albanian Muslim who was the commander of the Handzar Division of the Bosnian Muslim Army. The name of the Albanian Muslim commander of the Handzar Division was given as “Dzeki”. Zebic gave the following testimony on Thursday, March 17, 2005, in transcript #050317ED, page 22

Q. Very well. You knew that a unit called the Handzar Division, a small unit called the Handzar Division, came to be located in the village of Grabovica; is that correct?

A. I don’t know that.

Q. Okay. Did you ever meet a man — an Albanian man, the commander of a unit called Handzar, who went by the name of Dzeki, D-z-e-k-i?

A. I heard about him. For a while, they were in the town of  Jablanica.”

On Monday, February 21, 2005, a Bosnian Muslim soldier from Sarajevo, Witness D, who had been in the 1st Sandzak Brigade, in transcript #050221ED, page 15, in the war crimes trial of Sefer Halilovic, testified about the existence of the Handzar Division:

Q. Were there any other troops present when you arrived in Grabovica?
A. There were Solakovic’s 2nd Independent Battalion men. There were
Cedo’s Wolves, Zuka’s troops, and a bit further on there were those from the Handzar Division.”

The name of the Albanian Muslim commander of the reformed “Handzar divizija” of the Bosnian Muslim Army was Islam Peci-Dzeki. In the judgment in the ICTY war crimes trial of Sefer Halilovic of November 16, 2005, the court listed the formations of Bosnian Muslim Army:

“(v) Handžar Division

153. The Handžar Division was commanded by an Albanian called “Dzeki”.484 It was made up of Albanian soldiers.485 The Trial Chamber has not been furnished with evidence regarding the composition of this unit.”

On February 10, 2005, Witness C, confirmed the existence of the Handzar Division, on page 41, transcript #050210ED:

“14 Q. Now, on the 5th of September, did another group of soldiers called the Handzar Division arrive in the area?
A. Yes.
Q. And did they have a leader called Dziki?
A. There were so many nicknames. But as this was on the west bank and I was on the east bank of the river, I couldn’t tell you what their names were. They all had nicknames, Riki, Briki [phoen]. I can’t even recall them all.
Q. Yes.
A. Nobody had a real name.”

Finally, the ICTY had a copy of the Order of September 2, 1993 issued by Bosnian Muslim military commander Sefer Halilovic to the 6th Corps on the reorganization of the Hanzar Division. This order was Trial Exhibit 123.

This evidence confirms conclusively that the Bosnian Muslim Government of Alija Izetbegovic and the Bosnian Muslim Army recreated and reformed the Bosnian Muslim Nazi SS Division from World War II. They did not wear the fezzes and uniforms of the original Handzar Division from 1943 to 1945 and “Heimlich Bimmler” was no longer their commander. But as Robert Fox noted, they reveled in a revival of Nazi and fascist culture, a glorification and continuation and resurgence of Bosnia’s Nazi and SS past.

It appears as though the existence of the reformed Handzar Division was not much of a secret.

Posted in: Bosnia