Automake supports a simple type of conditionals.
These conditionals are not the same as conditionals in GNU Make. Automake conditionals are checked at configure time by the configure script, and affect the translation from Makefile.in to Makefile. They are based on options passed to configure and on results that configure has discovered about the host system. GNU Make conditionals are checked at make time, and are based on variables passed to the make program or defined in the Makefile.
Automake conditionals will work with any make program.