From last Sunday’s UK Observer:

The Turks had packed the old centre of Sarajevo for days, wandering streets that had once been part of the Ottoman empire, which had also ruled their own country. Ahead of Turkey’s crucial Euro 2008 qualifying match against Bosnia on 2 June, there was an affinity between themselves and the Bosnian Muslims that make up the capital’s majority, a bond of culture and religion against their mutual, sworn enemies: Serbia and Greece. T-shirts and flags were for sale combining the lilies of the war-time Bosnian flag with Turkey’s star and crescent on a red background. ‘Bosna!’ chanted the Turks; ‘Turkiye!’ the Bosnian fans chanted back.

In the stadium, beneath the now silent hills from which the guns once shelled the city, banners were unfurled to reveal the names of places from all over the country, each of which had been scenes of savage violence and ethnic cleansing. One of them, from Gornji Vakuf, where the main street had been a terrifying front line, bore a portrait of the late, wartime Bosnian Muslim President, Alija Izetbegovic, reading: ‘Those who love you will always be with you.’

Izetbegovic is our late ally, the fundamentalist Muslim former president of Bosnia — who had been a recruiter for the German Nazis during WWII.

Meanwhile, I missed this AP item from September: Bosnian Hospital to Treat Palestinians Hurt while Trying to Kill Jews

A hospital in northern Bosnia said Tuesday it will treat 30 Palestinians injured in fighting with Israel.

The Tuzla hospital, whose doctors treated casualties from Bosnia’s 1992-95 war, has a specialist unit for treating patients with war injuries.

The hospital offered to treat Palestinian patients, and a group of 30 injured Palestinians are to begin arriving next month, said hospital director Nedret Mujkanovic.

The nearly EUR2-million cost of the treatment will be paid by the hospital, Mujkanovic said.

He did not have detailed information on the type of wounds of the Palestinian patients had or how the wounds were inflicted.

More Bosnian Loyalties Crystalizing (from February):

Bosnian Muslim NGOs nominate Malaysia’s suspected anti-Semite Mahathir for Nobel Peace Prize

Malaysia’s former premier Mahathir Mohamad has been nominated for the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize by four Bosnia-Herzegovina nongovernment groups for being the developing world’s “most courageous advocate,” a newspaper reported Sunday.

Ejup Ganic, chancellor of the Sarajevo School of Science and Technology, worked closely with Mahathir when Malaysia provided humanitarian aid during the 1990s conflict that fractured the former Yugoslavia.

Mahathir is the Third World’s “most illustrious contemporary” and its “most courageous advocate,” Ganic was quoted as saying.

In 2003, at the inaugural speech to the Islamic conference convening in Malaysia, Mahathir said that: “The Europeans killed six million Jews out of twelve million, but today the Jews rule this world by proxy. They get others to fight and die for them. 1.3 billion Muslims cannot be defeated by a few million Jews.”

The groups also hailed Mahathir as a representative of moderate Islam [Yes, this is what moderate Islam sounds like], and for his work as an ambassador for peace in conflict-prone Muslim areas such as southern Thailand, the report said.

Mahathir is well known for his caustic criticism of Western countries and of the U.S.-led war in Iraq.