Croatians Remember Sir Robert Menzies And Bleiburg Massacre

Sir Robert Gordon (Bob) Menzies of Australia

Sir Robert Gordon (Bob) Menzies of Australia

According to British documents, located in the British Public Records Office at Kew Gardens in London, over 500,000 Croatian civilians and 200,000 soldiers were handed over to Tito’s Yugoslav Partisan Army in May of 1945. Based on eyewitness testimony and independent documentation, we can only estimate that the vast majority were slaughtered. The Bleiburg Tragedy is, perhaps, the best kept secret of man’s inhumanity to man. Certainly, it serves as an example of man’s ability to ignore the suffering of the powerless and those who lack nation-state status. Let us pray that Croats always cherish their independence and always fight those that attempt to subjugate them,” Michael Palaich.

May 15th 2014 marks 69 years since the days after WWII ended hundreds of thousands of innocent Croats (disarmed soldiers, civilians including women and children, fleeing communist Yugoslavia into promised freedom in the West found themselves slaughtered over the ensuing two months by Tito’s communists; the field at Bleiburg in Austria marks the central point where the slaughters began as the fleeing refugees were turned by the British forces into Yugoslavia, into the vicious and murderous hands of the communists, who dare to call themselves antifascists, under the pretence of forced repatriation.

May 15th 2014 marks 36 years since the death of Australia’s former Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies. On 19 May 1978 some 100,000 Australians turned out in the Melbourne CBD and in the suburbs to pay tribute to Menzies, after he died at age of 83. This very fact provides an indication of the respect with which many held him and among them were multitudes of Croatian immigrants in Australia who had fled communist Yugoslavia, thus surviving the vicious and merciless communist purges.

While in May of every year Croats commemorate the 1945 Bleiburg Massacres, not only to pay respects to the victims but also to keep the candle of hope alight for justice, for the prosecution of communist crimes, Australian Croats in their many numbers also remember in gratitude the life of Sir Robert Menzies – their Prime Minister who stood by their rights to keep the flame and the dream of independent Croatia alive.
Robert Gordon “Bob” Menzies is the longest-serving Prime Minister in Australian history. Menzies was Prime Minister twice, first from 1939 to 1941, and then from 1949 through to 1966, for a grand total of 18 years and five months in the top job. Menzies was at the centre of many significant events in this period of Australian history, which shaped the modern nation and the Australian Liberal Party.

Menzies was strongly opposed to communism because it enshrined what Ronald Reagan was later to term the evil empire. The prisoners in the various communist gulags, hard labour camps, purges under political opponents banner … well understood this—as did the descendants of the victims of Lenin, Stalin, Tito, Mao …

Amidst a plethora of false allegations of Croat violence in Australia – without doubt the work of communist Yugoslavia Secret Police UDBA – Menzies found it necessary to deliver an historic speech in the Parliament of Australia when in 1964 the authorities found no evidence whatsoever to support allegations of Croat Ustashe violence towards individuals of Yugoslav nationality from which systematic or organised attacks could be inferred. Menzies’ resolve in protecting the rights of Croatian immigrants in Australia to cherish the very dream of an independent Croatia was a resolve not of a hater of communism but that of a politician who lived for the people, their rights and welfare.

In fond memory of Menzies, I quote a part of his speech in the Australian Parliament on 27 August 1964:

“…In the years since World War II, Australia’s immigration programme has brought to this country people from all parts of Europe with a diversity of historical and cultural backgrounds. Many of these people were refugees from oppression. Many derived from happier circumstances. This flow of new citizens has played an important part in building the nation. It is something, which has given us great satisfaction and we wish to see it continue. However, it is basic to our immigration policy that all these new citizens should be integrated as fully, and as quickly, as possible into Australia’s national life…

I turn now to the matter of immigration from Yugoslavia. To understand the attitudes of these migrants it is necessary to remind ourselves that this part of Europe has an exceedingly complex and troubled history. Yugoslavia emerged from the political settlements of World War I. It brought together as a union a number of southern Slav peoples including Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, under the Serbian King Alexander. The Serbs obtained their independence from the Ottoman Empire during the nineteenth century and were numerically the largest group in the new State. The Croats had formerly enjoyed a degree of autonomy within the Austro-Hungarian empire and retained a national identity dating back as early as the ninth century. Deep differences of religious, cultural and historical kinds have existed between the groups despite kindred racial origins.

Within the new State, the Croats sought a federal concept of government with a large degree of local autonomy. In 1928, the leader of the Croats, Stjepan Radic of the Croatian Peasant Party and two of his colleagues were assassinated in the Parliament in Belgrade (Serbia). This precipitated a profound breach between Serbs and Croats. The Croats developed strong agitation in support of independence. Peasant Party leaders taking their cause to the League of Nations. Some Croat Parliamentary representatives were arrested, others, among them Dr. Ante Pavelic, went into exile…

It is difficult for people coming to Australia easily to forget their historical backgrounds. Since the war a number of organisations opposed to the present Government of Yugoslavia have developed throughout the world amongst refugees and migrants from that country. It is understandable that some Yugoslav migrants of Croatian origin should continue to hope for the establishment of an independent Croatia and within a democracy like Australia they have right to advocate their views so long as they do so by legitimate means. I wish to make it perfectly clear that the vast majority of the migrants from all parts of Yugoslavia who have settled in Australia have proved to be law abiding, hard working citizens and a real asset to this country…

…So I make the Government’s position quite clear: This Government will not interfere with freedom of opinion. Equally, it will not tolerate any activities, which constitute a breach of the law.”

On this day in May we remember the innocent victims of communist crimes and we remember Sir Robert Menzies. Croatia today, perhaps more than ever before, needs politicians of Menzies’ caliber – politicians who know how to bring justice to the victims of communist crimes and fight against the communist agenda that still seeks to degrade and destroy the independence Croats paid for in rivers of blood. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)









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  1. Postoje teme koje nije poželjno otvarati kako se ne bi dovela u pitanje unificirana povijesna istina, desetljećima krojena u komitetima i na visokim partijskim školama. Istina, koju i danas u javnom životu RH proklamiraju polaznici tih istih partijskih škola, komitetskih redakcija i partijskih ćelija sa sveučilišta. Sramotni muk, muk koji se širi iz grobnica razasutih svud oko nas polako prekriva cijelu Hrvatsku pretvarajući je u jednu veliku masovnu grobnicu. Zlokobna tišina, neosjetljivost i nezainteresiranost, pretvaraju nas u suučesnike zločina, ako ne u to, onda svakako u kreatore zaborava. RIP — in Bleiburg, Austria.

    • Translation of comment by CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES: It’s not desirable to open up some topics so that a unified historic truth moulded in committees and high Party schools would not be brought into question. The truth proclaimed even today in public life in Croatia by those who attended the same Party schools, committee editorials and Party cells from Universities. The shameful deathlike silence, silence that spreads from the graves all around us is slowly covering the whole of Croatia, turning it into a large massive tomb. The sinister silence, insensitivity and disinterest, are turning us into accessories of crimes, if not into that then certainly into creators of forgetfulness. RIP – in Bleburg, Austria.

      • alija derzelez says:

        Brankec,what I’m really trying to tell is very simple,I live in Split and am familiar with things in this country,politically I’m in the centar so I could go for ustasa,partisan or something else.The biggest gift to Komunjare is HDZ and Diaspora and they will be politically around for long time,the stupidest two politicians today in this country are Karamarko and Tomasic on the other hand you have no an idea how Mesic,Josipovic and Milanovic got on the top.Ruza represents diaspora and your point of view and has no idea on who Ante Starcevic is.If you ever come home and make a run for the office you will be labeled Ustasa and not by komunjare but by HDZ,its there game my friend,there is too much hate here thanks to HDZ and there labeling game.

      • Alija Derzelez – Tomasic does not represent the diaspora, so keep to facts please

  2. brankec says:

    Why are “antifascists” so aggressive and so adamant to tie NOB to the Homeland War? The answer lies in this article. It is out of desperation to inject legitimacy into a largely illegitimate movement. Proof is that while the rest of the free world hasn’t exactly condemned “antifascist” atrocities under Tito, they haven’t exactly rushed to conjoin legitimate European antifascism with Tito’s genocidal operation that can only be referred to encased in quotation marks.

    All one needs to do is to ask himself what exactly did Tito’s “antifascists” achieve by establishing communism as the one and only political structure in YU while other nations on the ‘winning’ side got to develop democratically. Also, why were Croatians and their families threatened with jail, loss of income, mock trials or worse if they revealed various truths about anything to do with YU criminal activity? Why create an artificial language that nobody speaks and call it serbo-croatian unless your ultimate plan is to eliminate Croatian culture, read: cultural genocide. Why, even today, are boogeymen in black attire adorned with helvetica U’s being created to concoct an imaginary enemy in order to give the “antifascists” what amounts to contrived legitimacy? Why do those “antifascists” consider the Croatian diaspora, who has established itself as law-abiding, hard-working, model citizens, a threat or even a potential enemy? Rhetorical questions, yes, but you really need to ask yourself why.

    • The way communism evolved after WWII, Brankec, speaks volumes of its pretense to be like “Allies” but in effect its agenda was totally different – oppression and murderous control without accountability to humanity.

    • alija derzelez says:

      Brankec,could be because you keep a pic of … DELETED – no facts provided as required by comment policy

      • brankec says:

        Alija, I’m pretty sure I know what you were getting at before a certain (assumably deceased) person’s identity was deleted due to site policy, and let me just say that not only are you wrong about “the pic”, but also you’ve effectively illustrated how yugofascism could possibly have functioned for 45 years. How? Discredit your opponent with nebulous accusations, coercively tie him/her in with dubious individuals, concoct events that never happened, then point him/her out to a kangaroo court and let the oppresive institutions do the rest – it’s all in the yugofascist playbook. But times are different, Alija.Croatia is free, thanks to hundreds of thousands of brave men and women, particularly those who risked and lost their lives, who never gave up hope through all those years of yugofascist brutality, so that both you and I can voice our opinions clearly and openly and let others judge whose arguments make more sense. You, Alija, just need to learn to play by the rules. Bog i Hrvati.

  3. IVAN OROZ says:

    A što nam to sada vrijedi kada se samo slušaju antifašisti,i samo oni znaju istinu.Mi koji još uvijek tražimo kosti svojih očeva moramo šutjeti.

    • Translation of comment by IVAN OROZ: What use is it to us now when we’re only listening to antifascists, and only they know the truth. We, who are still searching for the bones of our fathers have to remain quiet.

  4. Wow I had no clue this happened. I liked the video. That old guy who said, “An order is an order. You just do it.” I wish those memorial markers in the beginning had been translated into English… Peace

  5. Sometimes justice never comes. 🙁 The interviews are powerful.

    • Thank you Jackie, yes perhaps in our lifetime justice will not come but if we keep the light on long enough our children or grandchildren will see to justice. That, I think is inherent to human nature.

  6. I always wandered why does Australia allows Cetnicks to parade at Anzac day, yet they are the ones who attacked Croatia and killed heaps of innocent people, shame on Australia for that!

    • I too have always wondered and are enraged at that, Nikola. I think the underlying reason is in Serbia’s monarchy being related to the British…

      • Zezevice says:

        Ina, I understand why the Serbs march on ANZAC day for they were allied to the British Empire during WW1 but at this years ANZAC day march there banner read Chetnik forces 1914-1918 and 1941 -1945. So basically the RSL allowed them to march with descendants who fought for murderers like Nedic, Pecanac, Ljotic, Dujic etc. I think the RSL should be alerted of this.

      • Yes, Zezevice, RSL should be supplied with facts regarding the Chetniks indeed

  7. Hoping that one day, victims can truly rest in peace knowing that justice has been served. Until then, we must keep speaking out against all lies and denials of these crimes.

  8. I watched the videos in full and I think, I would rather have been court martialed, but I cannot judge for I wasn’t there…you could tell they were very ashamed of following the orders to lie to and load up the people that this has haunted the British soldiers and will continue to do so. Like the one guy mention…it was a bloody political shameful business and that doesn’t rectify or minimise what went on in anyway…I hope we have come a long way since then. I truly do

    • Terrible business, it was, Kev, just as the war ended. Let’s hope that the 2009 EU declaration of condemning totalitarian regimes will end up giving stronger wings to prosecution/condemnation of Yugoslav/Croatian communist crimes perpetrated after WWII. Thank you on comment

      • Yes, we should all hope for that. It will help prevent such things from happening again, not only for Croatia, but for any country. I do hope we have grown beyond that by now.

      • Cheers, Kev, thank you

  9. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:

  10. Reblogged this on First Night History.

  11. HEllo Dimasuki,
    I just would like to thank you for taking the time to read and” “like”my humor post. I’m benefiting Great insight from your blog as well & looking forward to read your next post.
    Take care.

  12. Frank Negric says:

    I will never praise Menzies. Yes, he was anti-communist but it’s all politician speak. Menzies disliked Catholics (though not as much as other members of the Liberal party of his era) and loved Britain and the monarchy and of course the British monarchy is related to the Serbian monarchy. He would throw us under a bus when he didn’t need us anymore.


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