Seeing crimes of communism for what they are and getting them prosecuted legally – this was the topic discussed at the conference on the legal settlement of crimes of communism at the EU parliament in Brussels, 5 June.
At the conference, Sandra Kalniete, Chairwoman, Reconcilliation of European Histories Group said:
“Today every school child knows that Nazi was an evil regime. There’s a confusion about communist crimes. We have to raise this issue and deprive it of all the ambiguity. Because if not, then these crimes will be perpetrated again and again.”
Egils Levits, Judge, European Court of Justice, said: “Victims should have experience of not only injustice, now they should experience justice and especially for this reason I think a legal settlement of communist crimes is necessary”.
At the conclusion of the conference an announcement was made that “The Platform of European Memory and Conscience is calling for the creation of a supranational judicial body for the gravest crimes committed by the Communist dictatorships.
The Platform of European Memory and Conscience is founding an international legal expert group to work on a road map for establishing a supranational institution of justice.
The Platform endorses the initiative of the Reconciliation of European Histories group in the European Parliament to give the national archives which harbour information on the crimes of totalitarianism a status of European importance and is calling upon institutions of the European Union and national governments worldwide to support this work”.
The moves within European Union to finally deal with communist crimes, in the way that truly and loudly counts – legally – and not just talk about them, record them or condemn them are, I believe, of crucial benefit for Croatia when it becomes a member of the EU.
Within EU, the bravest sector of Croatian establishment that has for years been obstructed, ridiculed and criticized for attempting to prosecute communist crimes, will gain allies in pursuit of justice for victims of communist crimes.
The situation in Croatia with former communists (the Social Democrats led government and the president of the Republic) is outrageous.
Even at the celebration of Croatian Statehood Day (25 June/ day of independence) this leftist lot had the nerve to lay a wreath at the grave of late Ivica Racan (Chairman League of Communists of Croatia 1989/1990; President Social Democratic Party 1990/2007) who actually protested in Croatian parliament in June 1991 against the proclamation of independence (he and his leftist colleague didn’t want Croatia to become independent but advocated for a new kind of union between seceding Yugoslav republics).
By this act they attempt to equate Racan with dr Franjo Tudjman when it comes to giving credit and worth for the achievement of Croatian independence and sovereignty.
Absolutely and alarmingly disrespectful of the achievements that must be attributed to dr Franjo Tudjman, for if things panned out the way Racan advocated we wouldn’t be celebrating the 21st birthday of Independent Croatia – of the greatest achievement of the majority of Croatian people in history.
But that’s not all, Croatia’s former communists, while celebrating the WWII antifascists did that in the spirit of equating them with the priceless value of Croatian defenders from the Homeland War of 1991-1995; at the same time justifying murders and massacres perpetrated by the antifascists/Partisans.
This is how Croatia’s well known journalist Mario Profaca commented on Facebook on the events in Croatia on Friday 22 June 2012 – and I could not agree more:
“Not to mention by name the horrendous pit Jazovka, near Sosica on Zumberak, at which tribute and honour to the soldiers and civilians killed by the Partisans during World War II and after it dumped into the pit was bestowed with a commemorative Mass. Laying of wreaths and lighting of candles, in his speech for celebrating the public holiday Day of antifascist battle, 22 June 2012, speaking about the crimes committed also by Tito’s Partisans, Croatia’s Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic inaugurated a new ‘antifascist’ concept – ‘the right to revenge’.
President Ivo Josipovic (who ‘himself is a son of Partisan’) liked that, as well as Milanovic’s opportunistic meditation on how, during World War II, the ‘member countries of anti-Hitler coalition also murdered hundreds of thousands of civilians, women and children, and this was justified then’.
In the live TV broadcast from Brezovica, Milanovic uttered that sentence exactly at 11.59 a.m., and at that moment the live broadcast was cut due to regular News broadcast on HTV 1 at 12.00 noon, and so we couldn’t hear whether there were more of such big thoughts from a small mind.
We also must not neglect the bad in the events of 1940’s. But Croatia was on the right side, we know that it was just to participate in antifascist battle. What Partisans were then, our war veterans from 1990’s are now’, Josipovic said with inspiration.
In accordance with Milanovic’s and Josipovic’s inspired emphases of the analogy between antifascist battle and our Homeland War some idiot from Milanovic’s government could come up with the idea of inserting ‘the right to revenge’ into the Constitution of the Republic of Croatia as a Constitutional category. Only, in that case criminal prosecutions against Croatian defenders (war veterans) would need to be stopped.
That’s why it’s understandable that Milanovic’s ‘antifascist’ Cock-a-doodle-doo coalition has not yet forwarded to the parliament its proposal for the introduction into the Constitution of the Republic of Croatia the antifascist ‘right to revenge’, and when it will – we don’t know.”
The men, women and children Tito’s antifascist regime (including Partisans) murdered during and after WWII form multitudes; the bones of most are in over 1200 mass graves. All of them – symbols of love for Croatia.
These were not random slayings.
It was genocide.
It came from the top of the communist echelon. It was systematic and planned; so planned that even decades after the war the Yugoslav secret police UDBA ravaged the Croatian diaspora, intent on murdering the strongest human links to the love for Croatia.
The time has come when strong positive and decisive actions need to be put into place in Croatia so that prosecuting and dealing with communist crimes reaches a nationally supported level – for justice for victims. I have no doubt that gladness for increased efforts in justice for the victims of the communist regime would land into overwhelmingly supportive hands of both Croatia and diaspora – just like the movement for independence and sovereignty did in late 1980’s and 1990’s. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)