Bob Dylan – senility blowing like it never blowed before

Photo by: AP

There’s no doubt that Bob Dylan stands high among the greats of rock-and-roll history and that his songs will continue to inspire millions with their poetic imagery, but his latest interview for the Rolling Stone magazine  (September 27, 2012 issue) suggests that he has taken his imagery into the realms of insanity of the senile kind when he unleashes his seemingly delusional and scatterbrain claims of the U.S.A.’s “Black’s and Whites/ slavery masters and Klan blood” and “Croatian blood”.

This country is too f**ked up about color. It’s a distraction. People at each others’ throats just because they are of a different color. It’s the height of insanity and it will hold any nation back – or any neighborhood back. Or anything back. Blacks know that some whites didn’t want to give up slavery – that is they had their way, they would still be under the yoke, and they can’t pretend they don’t know that. If you’ve got a slave master or Klan in your blood, blacks can sense that. That stuff lingers to this day. Just like Jews can sense Nazi blood and the Serbs can sense Croatian blood. It’s doubtful that America’s ever going to get rid of that stigmatization. It’s a country formed on the backs of slaves. …. If slavery had been given up in a more peaceful way, America would be far ahead today.”

There’s a likelihood that some possible adverse cerebral effects of Dylan’s long-standing drug and alcohol addiction, his advancing age and his May 2012 receipt of the Presidential Medal of Freedom (the Presidential Medal of Freedom is the highest civilian honour in the US and, according to the White House, is awarded to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavours) all conspired in the result of the bizarre, the doozy, the hostile, the delusional interview with Mikal Gilmore. With utmost respect and care for those suffering from a mental health problem there comes a time when one must, for the sake of absolute truth and sanity, confront the fact and call a delusion – a delusion.

Mikal Gilmore’s respectful interviewing strategy, filled with praise for Dylan’s musical achievements did nothing for his attempts to make this interview a palatable piece of journalistic adventure. Dylan kept going off the deep end, off the tangents, appearing as a hostile, self-pitying, not too witty (far removed from the wit in the lyrics of his songs) and incoherent old man, even though he is only 71 years old.

While people in the U.S.A. surely take grave offense to Dylan’s insane claims regarding the blood of slavery masters and KKK still running in their veins so strong that “Blacks” can sniff it, or sense it, Croatians have moved a step further and some Radio stations (e.g. Split) have banned Dylan’s music post this interview in the Rolling Stone.

Love the resolve!

Dylan has confused the facts of recent history: it was the Serbs who brutally attacked Croatians in the early 1990’s and not vice versa. It was Serbs who murdered masses and ethnically cleansed Croatian territory of Croatians and non-Serbs before Croatia had to accelerate its defense in efforts to save lives.  It was Serbs who perpetrated Srebrenica genocide in 1995, not Croatians.

Duquesne Whistle from Dylan’s Tempest album has some telling lyrics about his state of mind during the Rolling Stone interview:

Listen to that Duquesne whistle blowing
Blowing like she never blowed before
Blue light blinking, red light glowing
Blowing like she’s at my chamber door

Indeed, Dylan’s mind seems to be blowing like it never blew before and this time he reveals things about himself that truly compel one to question the clarity of his mind and his motives. Apart from the passage on America’s slavery masters, the Ku-Klux-Klan, Nazis, Jews, Croatians and Serbians, quoted above the shock he serves to the public goes further, making one wonder if the boundaries between reality and delusional are truly blurred in his mind, or whether his Rolling Stone tantrums are his last-ditch effort to stay in the limelight and earn a buck while he still can. Whichever it is – it’s nasty and intolerable.

Often, we’ve read that Dylan (real name Robert Zimmerman) had changed after his 1966 motorcycle accident and he explains this by saying that the accident spurred his transfiguration  (in reference to Jesus’ transformation from a physical to spiritual entity in the New Testament). Dylan says that upon reading a book about the Hells Angels, he realised he was transfigured in conjunction with a man sharing his name – Bobby Zimmerman, the president of the San Fernando chapter of the Hells Angels – who also had a motorcycle accident in the 1960s and died. Hence, this is why Dylan seems to be struggling to explain some things from his past – that person is “long dead.”

Attacking those who’ve accused him of lyrical plagiarism of various authors, Dylan goes for the kill of his critics: “Wussies and pussies complain about that stuff. It’s an old thing – it’s part of the tradition. It goes way back. These are the same people that tried to pin the name Judas on me. Judas, the most hated name in human history! If you think you’ve been called a bad name, try to work your way out from under that. Yeah, and for what? For playing an electric guitar? As if that is in some kind of way equitable to betraying our Lord and delivering him up to be crucified. All those evil motherf**kers can rot in hell.

Oh, and Dylan likes Barrack Obama and that’s probably fairly due to the fact that Obama recently bestowed upon him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, however, the fact that Dylan pins his positive view of Obama by saying that he is “a good dresser, personable and loves music” clearly shows what Dylan values in political leaders – something far, far removed from the values political leaders should have if they were to delve into Dylan’s claims of racial-discriminatory, genocidal, persecutory blood that can still, according to him, be sniffed out on the streets of America and Croatia.

A comparison of Dylan as he emerges from this Rolling Stone interview with a disturbing fruit loop image serves poetic imagery right. But also, there are the lyrics of Duquesne Whistle to consider:  “can hear a sweet voice steadily calling, Must be the mother of Our Lord”! A seething delusion or poetic imagery!? Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)


  1. Bob should read ICTY’s verdicts.Croats have been persecuted in the 90s because of that kind of Milosvics war time propaganda in which Serbs were called by their leaders to exterminate Croats and other non Serbs.Led by madeup stories by the Milosevic regime they killed thousands and thousands of people and still have no remorse even today.

  2. Mike Szabo says: says about Dylan and his interview: “His comments on slavery are controversial, and saying America was ruined by slavery won’t endear Dylan to many. His words will open wounds for some and evoke anger in others.”

    Well, so glad to read that Croatia’s radio stations are banning his music. Go Croatia! Enough of these celebrities who think they can make comments and statements about people without any regard for the truth or the facts. Obviously Dylan is no scholar but he should know better than to make blanket statements and provide no specific verifiable examples.

    Hope he doesn’t sell as many albums as he might have thought he would with this stupid, hateful outburst.

  3. During the siege of Sarajevo the Serbs were allowing a group of Jews to leave. The Irish reporter I was interpreting for asked me to ask Ratko Mladić why only Jews were being allowed out. “Because the Jews control America and we don’t need America mad at us,” answered the wily general. Well, I don’t think the Jews control America, but he was right about not pissing us off! A lot of Serbs curried favor with Jewish groups in the US before and during the war. And they’re still doing it! Jews I knew in the US had been prepped ahead of the war, fed all the propaganda about the Ustashi. The New York picture agency I was hooked up with even called me to ask if Croats were anti-Semitic. Dylan and his like forget that the majority of Americans were against slavery at the time of the Civil War. My ancestors fought for abolition long before the war started. My grandmother’s grandfather was hanged in Missouri for smuggling runaway slaves to Kansas, a non-slave state. So I can tell Dylan to get lost. All white Americans are not crackers. We’re not all rich because our ancestors owned slaves. That sort of nonsense is welcome in certain circles….like the circles currently occupying the White House.

    • My grandfather was killed by the fascist Italians.But because of the Serbian propaganda people like Bob Dylan call his grandson (me) a nazi 70 years later.

    • Serbs have long been piggy-backing on Jewish tragedy. It’s unfortunate that Jewish organizations didn’t recognize the insincerity behind the contrived friendship, even after it became clear that Jasenovac victims were exaggerated by at least tenfold. The Jewish community would have been better served if they had remained neutral instead of dog-piling on the myth that all Croatians are murderous war criminals, which I’m sure has hurt the Generals’ efforts to prove their innocence at the ICTY. Now it will take a huge effort to dispel this myth although Esther Gitman’s book will no doubt give that effort a decent start. Croatians should be forever thankful to her setting the record straight about Cardinal Stepinac.

  4. If Obama wasn’t running for President it’s unlikely Dylan would have come out with “America was founded on the back of slaves” as he did in that Rolling Stone interview. Obama must be really worried about his prospects of re-election, so he got Dylan to say something about the history of slavery in the hope to win sympathy votes. Hey, if Dylan was so concerned about inequality in America why didn’t he say something about the American Indians, like how they lost out… It’s not true that America was founded on the back of slavery, slavery only helped fatten the wallets of some (mainly Southern part of America…).
    As for his reference to Croatians, being a Jew, he still hasn’t caught up with the fact that those Croatians ( a minority I might add) who participated in the Holocaust during WWII have been brought to justice and are dead.
    What an idiot he is: he criticizes America for for not transitioning from slavery in peaceful way and labels it as sitting on the blood and sweat of Black slaves and harbors hatred for Croatians who have long ago died and pins that hatred on today’s Croatians who have nothing to do with the Holocaust. A truly mad, confused and evil person could do that – certainly not the romantic that Dylan once was. Not to be taken seriously, head up Croats – continue boycotting his music. That’s the best way to show the truth.

  5. It’s the old WW2 propaganda surfacing again. All Croatians tarred with the same brush. I wonder why nobody calls Germans, Italians or Japanese Nazis/Fascists today? Just shows the extent and effort of the Anti- Croatian lobby

  6. Not long after Dylan’s comments came out, a group of about 5,000 of his ‘heavenly people’ as they like to call themselves, must have “sensed” Croatian evil on the parquet at Belgrade’s Pioneer Arena when, frustrated by their own team’s poor performance, took things into their own hands and started throwing bottles, lighters and other objects at the evil basketball players from Zadar. This ‘heroic’ effort led to the Zadar players retreating to their locker room, no doubt to figure out the details of their next murderous romp and setup of concentration camps throughout Belgrade. Another battlefield win for the Serbs to go with the countless untold others!

    • Its because noone reacted when Croatian women and children were attacked in Belgrade during Handball Championships.Serbs attacked women and children with axes and guns.Nobody protested then exept for Croats themselfs.But who cares if Croats get attacked?The usual.

  7. well said and articulated,all the above. nothing left for me to say but drugs fry brains. now tossing out my dylan cd’s

  8. I think this is a lasting effect of Serbian propaganda. Serbs like to think of themselves as eternal victims, and often call themselves the Jews of the Balkans who continue to experience their very own ‘holocaust’ even to this day. I find this rather disgusting that they would consider themselves to egotistical that they would equate themselves with the real victims of the Holocaust. This comes from myths and propaganda the Serbs themselves have made up to portay themselves as only ever the victims. We see this also repeating in the way they talk about the recent wars. They often cite NATO bombings and EUs general acceptance of Kosovo as Western ‘rape’ of Serbia. Yet they neglect to mention their crimes in Croatia, Bosnia, Kosovo etc. in an attempt to create a Greater Serbia.

    SO in saying all that, since Bob Dylan had a concert in Belgrade in 1991, at the height of the war in Croatia, one can assume that the Serbs there filled his head with all sorts of ideas of Serb-Jew solidarity and how all Croatians must be Nazis (they rarely used the term Croat in those days judging by news reports, instead they used Ustase or Croatian Ustasa or fascist etc). I find this shocking since Serbia persecuted Jews during the Holocaust and we often here how the Nedic puppet government claimed Belgrade the first major European city to be Judenfrei.

    Just another example of how Serb propganda is the best in the world and its lasting effects.

  9. The pathetic excuse for a journalist from Slobodna Dalmacija newspaper, Boris Dezulovic, who is a die-hard Yugonostalgic, after has written a piece in that paper defending Dylan, defending Branko Lustig, attacking Croatians – he’s back into his old filthy deeds of his ex-Feral Tribune which just published filth and lies for his leftist colleagues who did not want independent Croatia.
    Dezulovic felt sorry for Dylan, and says Dylan doesn’t know anything about Croatian history – so why “attack” him for his attacks on Croatians. Well, if Dylan doesn’t know anything about Croatian history why did he speak out against Croatians with vicious innuendo and lies?
    Then that pathetic excuse for a journalist Dezulovic criticizes Knin high school kids and teachers for not turning up to Branko Lustig’s lecture on holocaust and showing of movie about the Holocaust. Dezulovic goes so far in this as to suggest that these high school kids, their teachers, the parents of the kids are anti-Jews etc and pro WWII Independent State of Croatia just because they didn’t turn up for a lecture on the Holocaust.

    Well, I say: good going Knin! Had Branko Lustig organized a lecture that would address the WWII Holocaust + WWII Communist Crimes + 1990’s Serbian aggression against Knin and murders and ethnic cleansing of Croats from there by Serbs in early 1990’s then I’m sure they all would have attended. I’m sick and tired of Serb crimes being ignored and the Holocaust being shoved under our noses while Communist and Serb crimes are being ignored.

    Grow up Dezulovic: Bob Dylan knows a great deal about the great good of Croatia BUT he chooses not to speak about it, and he chooses to regurgitate the WWII holocaust for which those that participated in it have paid their dues and those that haven’t participated are still paying for it regardless of their innocence.

    Good going Ina Vukic!

  10. he he he…No matter how much you croatian want to “reinvent” yourselves and play the victims in the 90’s wars… no one beleives the sob stories, and everyone know you are all still goosestepping with the best of them.

    • Mark Veer says:

      Oh man, you Steve need to follow Dylan to the place where doctors try and repair lost memories or fix pathological delusions. But maybe there’s no hope for you.
      Facts of murder and brutality do not make sob stories. Perhaps you should send your comments to a blog from Serbia, they’re the ones trying to reinvent themselves, just like they did after WWII when they got rid of 94% of Serbia’s Jews by May 1942 then pinned the blame onto German occupying forces even though Serbia’s Milan Nedic and his Serbs gladly drove the Jews to slaughter and declared Serbia Jew-free before anyone else in Europe.

  11. Sabrina Ramet has written about the psychology of Serbian myth building in ‘Under the Holy Lime Tree’ ( and ‘The Denial Syndrome and its Consequences’

  12. Thanks Mark. Very well put.

  13. The TrutH says:

    Most of u people need help. Go have enjoyable n emotional life somewhere and don’t hate, it’ll come back to you. Or to ur kids…

    • No hatred here The TrutH, just facts. Following the lead in U>S., U.K. etc media. When onr touches your emotions publicly without provocation, as Dylan did, then one must be prepared to receive reactions.

    • Its hard to have a normal life when a nation is smearing your grandfathername ,your name and your kids names all because of stupid wartime propaganda.What must i expect ,that my kids will be attacked by some Serbs in the future because of what their leaders are telling them now?You try to live with that.

  14. My grandfather fought in WW2 against fascists and nazis and was killed. In the last war me and my family had to go to shelter because Serb dominated army attacked my town with airplanes and battle-ships. And now me and my country are insulted by a singer who should check his facts straight.

  15. Dylan makes a reference to Jasenovac – where a crime much larger than the whole 1990’s war occured, even if you sum up the atrocities of all three sides. Majority of victims were Serbian, but other ethnicities were attacked too.

    • That is actually incorrect regarding the numbers of victims in Jasenovac and other sites although numbers are not important, even 1 is too many. Bleiburg is a symbol of mass murders that occurred including Way of the Cross – so far 900 mass graves have been identified in that symbol in Croatia. Indeed in “Bleiburg and Ovcara” there were victims of all non-Serb ethnicity, although mainly Croatian..

  16. Your article Bob Dylan – senility blowing like it never blowed before – Croatia, the War, and the Future write very well, thank you share!

  17. Your Right!
    Obviously this issue doesnt provoke anyone anymore……….
    Sorry Croatia, Dylan has it the wrong Way around, but all these reactions only underline his message. Oh… And alot of you guys need to check your spelling so as to be properly understood.

    • Honestly Mikkel, spelling often doesn’t matter really, but it would be good if you gave examples. As far as I am concerned if someone is trying to write something in a foreign language to them, they are to be applauded for their efforts.

      • Examples of poor spelling occur too often to list, however an example of an error of concord: really must come before matter. Spelling is important. I thought you were a professor…

      • Which means Mikkel that there are none or a few (please don’t take words in title as spelling mistakes for they are not they represent the journalistic usual play of words one finds everywhere even in news reporting…) – So it would be good if you replied with just one or two spelling mistakes you refer to and do not forget to take into consideration the form of English this is written in (US, British. Australian…). Yes I am professor and above, proud to say, not of English language though

    • Ina said, “Yes I am professor and above, proud to say, not of English language though”

      Boooing. But of course you’re my friend, so I’ll overlook nearly everything. I admire people who are not easily offended, and I try to be that way myself–especially toward people I like and respect.

      By the way, I can tell you first hand that your writing in English–although it at times shows some evidence of being a second language, due mostly to the occasional omitted article or preposition–is better than many people who are native writers.

      Indeed, I am a bit finicky about my own writing because I like to think that there a few writers in the English language that care about the tradition. So, whenever I can, I proof-read what I’ve written and correct the mistakes after posting. (Almost always find some.)

      • Aw thanks Donald, often the writing by omitting articles etc is done on purpose or simply overlooked – the content is important I think and yes thank you on your compliments 🙂

  18. Hi Ina,
    About your essay, says about Dylan and his interview: “His comments on slavery are controversial, and saying America was ruined by slavery won’t endear Dylan to many. His words will open wounds for some and evoke anger in others.”
    I’m an American so I can give you a factual account. Dylan’s comments on slavery are not controversial because they are said so often that no one would notice, not even a Clansman. Another reason why they are not controversial in the US is because they are true. There are undercurrents of racial tensions that will never go away. Slavery was a disaster for the US, and remains so, due to issues involving the poverty of blacks.
    The people in whom his words will evoke anger are people I don’t like anyway–mindless racists. Don’t get me wrong, there is plenty of racism by the blacks towards whites. They often think that this indiscriminate hatred is justified by history, which of course it isn’t, as every person should be judged by what they do rather than their ethnicity.
    As someone who considers you an online friend, I must say that in all honesty, I don’t like the personal attack that you made on Dylan. It is mostly an adhominem argument, born of anger.

  19. We all have our personal missions, and as you’ve probably guessed by now, mine is hands down the right to dissent and the right of free speech. In the US, there is a vile and evil network called Fox News. It’s the most popular network on cable TV. As a part of Rupert Murdoch’s evil empire, what they do is to tell people what they want to hear. Facts are of no importance to them. They are shameless and habitual liars.

    Do I wish they’d go away? Yes. Would I, if I had the power to do so, ban them? No.

    In a very real way, an outlet like that is a barometer of the mindset of a population–in this case the US. It doesn’t speak well for my country that such ignorance is pervasive. I have no actual knowledge of how ignorant other countries are, but I suspect that Britain and the Scandinavian countries are reasonably well-informed and thoughtful.

    • Know very well what you mean re the news TV programs – it’s been almost two years since I’ve started recording the TV news programs and then at my ;eisure watching selectively what I want out of it – sensationalism in news bothers me and Murdoch’s lot are not the only ones at it

  20. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I really appreciate your efforts and I will be
    waiting for your next post thank you once again.


  1. […] Back in September 2012 I wrote a post on Bob Dylan’s atrocious, vilifying and hateful statemen… and Serbs and KKK and Americans in his Rolling Stone interview. […]

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