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The Bosnian Muslims in the Second World War$
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Marko Attila Hoare

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199327850

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199327850.001.0001

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The Muslim and Croat rebellion

The Muslim and Croat rebellion

c. April 1943–October 1943

(p.103) 3 The Muslim and Croat rebellion
The Bosnian Muslims in the Second World War

Marko Attila Hoare

Oxford University Press

The year 1943 marked the turning-point for the NOP in Bosnia-Hercegovina. Italian collaboration with the Chetniks and the triumphalist Chetnik genocidal assault on the Bosnian Muslim and Croat population increasingly discredited the NDH and the Ustashas as the latter’s protectors, revealing them to be powerless. The flagship project of the Muslim autonomist resistance - the 13th SS Division ‘Handschar’ - far from establishing a military force to protect the Muslims, threatened to remove their combat-age males from Bosnian soil and to leave their homes undefended from the Chetniks. Finally, with the Italian collapse in the summer and autumn of 1943, the Germans increasingly abandoned their hostility to the Chetniks and closed ranks with the latter on an anti-Partisan basis. Meanwhile, the NOP increased its activity among the Muslim and Croat population and, particularly, among the quisling forces, its agitation on the basis of Bosnian and Croatian liberation and self-determination. In this context, the Muslim population of parts of Bosnia-Hercegovina - including several prominent Muslim notables - and to a lesser extent the Croat population, increasingly began to go over to the NOP as the only possible saviour.

Keywords:   Bosnia-Hercegovina, Ustasha, Handschar, Muslim, Croat, Chetniks, Germans

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