Field: Autobiography
Title: Inescapable Questions
Publication: The Islamic Foundation 2003
ISBN: 0-86037-367-3
Rating: aaaaa
Level: Intermediate
Reviewed by: Safwan

“Every people has its promised land. Our promised land is Bosnia. We call upon you to fight for it and win it.”

The multi-ethnic setting in Bosnia & Herzegovina is not too different from Malaysia. As outlined in the beginning of the book, major races in the country; i.e. Bosniaks, Serbs, and Croats played and still play a crucial role in maintaining the country’s integrity.

Alija Izetbegović’s self-written biography starts with some accounts of his teenage life; a young man and his reflections; whose faith had to be taken care by his mother. At a time when the Serbs (from Serbia )was in power, Alija dodged the draft (military service) and was hunted for it. It was in his teens when the second world war erupted, and around that time, he served his first imprisonment.

Alija spent some time to write books in the next chapter of his life. In fact, in 1983 he was again imprisoned, this time principally due to his writings. After serving the term, at a time when the communist regime of Yugoslavia was considerably weakened, Alija- with some friends- formed the SDA. The party did not take long to win the votes and more importantly hearts of Bosnian citizens. However, the path ahead is thorny, that only few dare to traverse.

With Crotia (president: Franjo Tudjman) leaving Yugoslavia, Bosnia & Herzegovina was left to choose between a war of independence and living as a second class citizen, under the feet of Serbs (president: Slobodan Milosević), in a new-but-rump Yugoslavia. As history witnessed it, dignity was preferred, and Bosnia & Herzegovina fought to earn it. The bloody, one-sided, draconian war that followed cannot be adequately described, to say the least. Bosnia was bent, but not broken. With the president's leadership, they in fact came out of it stronger and better experienced; far from what their enemies would expect of them.

This book recorded many experiences of the president and his remarkable life. His principles, decisions, and determination, above all, are unique and invaluable; they are for everyone to appreciate. Leading his people with nerves of steel, he lived by his principles both as a European and a Muslim.



  1. Read a better review here

  2. The break-up danger. Hope it doesn't happen though.