“Do you remember the EU Commission resolution number 1481 on condemnation of communist crimes?” writes Mladen Pavkovic, president of Homeland War Veterans Association 91, on the Croatian Veteran’s portal and continues with his eye-opening and sharp summing up of the disturbing situation associated with the current Croatian political leadership in government, which evidently makes it its business to cover-up the widespread communist crimes perpetrated during the times of communist Yugoslavia:
“The Resolution was passed by the Assembly of the European parliament on 25th January 2006 in Strasbourg and it condemns the criminal nature of the Communist party from the time of the October revolution to the fall of the Berlin Wall, in which the democratic representatives had stamped communism as a totalitarian ideology and in which (Josip Broz) Tito’s Yugoslavia was mentioned as a country in which the communists had perpetrated multitudes of crimes against nations and individuals. European Council had recommended that lustration be carried out in former communist countries, such as Yugoslavia, of the members and spies of the communist secret police and highly positioned communist party officials who had breached human rights during communist times. Seven years after the Resolution what has happened in relation to this in Croatia? Almost nothing, or very little.
That is, finally the alleged crimes perpetrated by members of the communist police (Zdravko) Mustac and (Josip) Perkovic have surfaced and more than ever there is talk and writing about the former UDBA operatives, but instead of prosecuting, processing and imprisoning them it’s incredulous with what might the Croatian government protects these people, who are exceptionally many in number and who had at the beginning of nineteen-nineties, coming out of the communist UDBA (secret police) simply turned their coats inside-out and began working as if nothing had happened in the Croatian and other secret services.
They’ve pulled along with them hundreds, or thousands of traitors and spies who had committed crimes during Broz’s dictatorship, and so, especially after some interviews with Perkovic one gets the impression that the former UDBA operatives were at the helm of creating the Croatian state, when in fact they utilised blackmail, theft and various other ‘tricks’ to hold in ‘check position’ most of the Croatian greats who were truly on the front lines against the aggression by the Serbs, Montenegrins and the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA).
Beside crossing over during the night from UDBA into the Croatian secret and other services like chameleons, beside the fact that their personnel are in almost all important leading functions, from banks, economy, judiciary, schools, health, to high-level politics, they have managed to employ as ‘secret agents’ and spies a good proportion of their own family members and, hence, we cannot really be surprised with the fact that there is not even a word let alone an implementation of lustration in Croatia, that the European Council Resolution regarding condemnation of communist crimes remains – a dead letter on paper.
Often these days, new Broz’s (Tito’s) mass graves are discovered in Slovenia and Croatia, filled with innocent Croats. Who is investigating these crimes? It’s clear to us now – nobody, because the same people who came over from the criminal UDBA to Tudjman’s side at the beginning of nineteen-nineties would need to investigate them, and those UDBA operatives are among the worst criminals and so it’s impossible to expect that they would process and incarcerate themselves. That’s why we see that every time a new mass grave from Tito’s era is discovered, earth-moving machinery (bobcats…) move in and dig out the bones of innocent people, then all that is thrown onto a heap and is buried again, as if nothing had happened.
After all, who was it that murdered tens of thousands of Croats after World War II, who killed innocent Croats living abroad, just because they did not agree with Broz’s (Tito’s) politics? The question is now also being put about Goli Otok and Stara Gradiska, the most horrible of death camps. If you come to Stara Gradiska you will see that nobody maintains it, it’s falling apart on its own. Soon there will be no trace of this camp where various ‘Perkovics’ and ‘Mustacs’ sent tens of thousands of innocent Croats. Where are those who administered those death camps, in which very large number of innocent Croats were killed and massacred, today, where are those who convicted those innocent Croats to such horrible punishment? Some have died, some still enjoy their villas and weekend houses by the sea, and some continue to work in the secret and other police services, especially in courts and public attorneys’ offices as if the crimes from Broz’s (Tito’s) regime have nothing to do with them.
Zagreb also has Marshall Tito Square, and streets and squares carrying his name exist all over Croatia. The former UDBA operatives have never been stronger. Just look at what happens on occasions of marking Tito’s birthday or his death, in Kumrovec (Tito’s birth place). Every year more and more supporters of this criminal gather there; they wave Yugoslav flags, dance Serb and other reels, spit on Croatia, and continually say that there would be no Croatia without them! After the interview with Perkovic, that has regretfully been shown to be true to a point.
That is, when Serb aggression started, who had the time to check who was coming from UDBA and who from the criminal Yugoslav People’s Army to avoid asking later – what did you do during the era of Broz’s (Tito’s) dictatorship? Perkovic even boasted that it was due to his intervention that dr. Franjo Tudjman received his passport back during the times of communism and he considers that as his great success instead of revealing who the people were that took the passports away from Tudjman and thousands of Croats because they did not agree with the politics of the Communist Union and sent them to prison and hard labour camps? One of those was he (Perkovic), as some call him ‘Croatian secret agent No. 1’. Exceptional attention is paid to him today as if he was ‘chief among chiefs’, but beside him there were hundreds of his colleagues who committed lesser or greater bestialities than he, but no one has publicly revealed who they were. However, that which is most horrible in all of this is the fact that these ‘Perkovics’ are not at all ashamed of their shameful role during the time of Broz’s (Tito’s) government, and so in published memoirs of 99% of these and similar people you will notice one ‘chapter’ is missing – what they did during the time of communist Yugoslavia?
In the European Council Resolution regarding condemnation of communist crimes it’s emphasised, among other things, that the victims of crimes of totalitarian regimes who are still alive or their families, deserve condolences, understanding and recognition for their suffering.
Have you ever heard or read that the innocent Croats victims, from Bleiburg, Stara Gradiska, Lepoglava to Goli Otok, received recognition, compensation or something like that? Today, Croatia is paying compensation to individual Serb survivors who had participated in the Serb aggression but due to lack of evidence it has not been proven that as ‘civilians’ they held rifles, while nobody asks about tens of thousands of innocent Croats who perished or suffered from a Serb bullet or knife, in which lack of asking various ‘Mustacs’ and ‘Perkovics’ play an important part and the whole of the country’s leadership, instead of condemning them, rallies behind them as being some Heroes of the Homeland war and not common criminals, and so, one Germany must show us who those persons are and explain why they must go behind bars, and not to ‘coffee with the president’!”
Written by Mladen Pavkovic
Translated in English by Ina Vukic.