Talked with Jerub in #netrek and we seemed to agree on the problem
being "sh" incorrectly building ./configure. I did "darcs
revert -a" as Jerub suggested and ran build script again but got same
error,,  in

# build configure
You should add the contents of `/usr/share/aclocal/libtool.m4' to `aclocal.m4'.
# completed ok

and the same error in ./configure:
checking for mp.h... ./configure: line 6781: syntax error near
unexpected token `}'
./configure: line 6781: `echo "${ECHO_T}no" >&6; }'

So next I did "darcs unpull" and removed all 86 patches then ran build
again, this time there is no warning about aclocal but it
still gives same ./configure error:

checking for mp.h... ./configure: line 6578: syntax error near
unexpected token `}'
./configure: line 6578: `echo "${ECHO_T}no" >&6; }'

Here is the full log from last build run: