“Dragon’s Den” and “Shark Tank” Investor And Star Canadian Croatian Robert Herjavec Mobilises Support For Victims Of Communism Monument

Robert Herjavec investor and star of TV shows “Dragon’s Den” and  “Shark Tank” speaks as Master of Ceremonies at a fundraiser event  for Canada’s Memorial of Victims of Communism project  at the Toronto Congress Centre on Friday May 30th  (Photo: Evan Ning/Epoch Times)

Robert Herjavec investor and star of TV shows “Dragon’s Den” and
“Shark Tank” speaks as Master of Ceremonies at a fundraiser event
for Canada’s Memorial of Victims of Communism project
at the Toronto Congress Centre on Friday May 30th
(Photo: Evan Ning/Epoch Times)


Robert Herjavec hosted an event Friday 30 May in Toronto to raise funds for Canada’s Memorial to Victims of Communism. The monument, to be built in Ottawa, is dedicated to paying tribute to liberty for the many millions of people who have died under communist regimes, and the eight million Canadians who had left communism for a new life in Canada.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivered a strong lengthy keynote speech at the event in which he minced no words in attacking the evil of communism.


Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivers the keynote speech in defence of victims of communist crimes at fundraiser for Canada's Memorial of Victims of Communism  held in Toronto Friday 30 May 2014 (Photo: Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press)

Canada’s Prime Minister Stephen Harper
delivers the keynote speech in defence
of victims of communist crimes at fundraiser
for Canada’s Memorial of Victims of Communism
held in Toronto Friday 30 May 2014
(Photo: Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press)

During the 20th century, communism’s poisonous ideology and ruthless practices slowly bled into countries around the world, on almost every continent,” Harper said.
The result was catastrophic. More than 100 million souls were lost — an almost incomprehensible number.”
But whatever it calls itself — Nazism, Marxist-Leninism, today, terrorism — they all have one thing in common: the destruction, the end of human liberty,” Harper emphasised.
The atrocities of communism are felt very closely by Canadians, Harper said, as nearly a quarter of Canadians are either victims of communism or are the descendants of those who were.
Canadian multimillionaire Robert Herjavec, who hosted the fundraising event, made his fortune out of a hard life that began in Croatia, then part of communist Yugoslavia, where his father faced a life and death behind bars because he wouldn’t stay quiet.
After being sent to prison 22 times for speaking out against the communist regime, Herjavec said his father was told the next time he went to prison, he’d never come out.
And so he took my mom and I and we came to this great country,” said Herjavec, the star of “Dragons’ Den” and “Shark Tank”, at the fundraiser.
Fleeing oppression and finding opportunity in their new homes was a theme that night, exemplified fittingly by the host, Robert Herjavec.
After fleeing communist Yugoslavia, Herjavec’s family arrived in Halifax with just a suitcase, and eventually settled in Toronto.
His dad’s life in Canada wasn’t easy though. He swept floors in a factory. Tougher times came when he lost his job, reported the Epoch Times.
Herjavec recalled how he tried to comfort his dad by suggesting that he could apply for unemployment benefits.
He looked at me and said ‘No, I will never file for unemployment because this country owes me nothing but an opportunity.’”
The event that night was put on by Tribute to Liberty, the charity behind the Canada’s Memorial to Victims of Communism project. The memorial is expected to be completed in late 2015. For more information, visit TributeToLiberty.ca


From this video on Canada’s Tribute To Liberty: “… construction a national monument to the victims of communism…For too long, victims of this kind of oppression and totalitarianism have gone unrecognised, have been forgotten about. But we must learn the lessons of history if we are to avoid repeating them…” Jason Kenny, Minister for Employment and Social Development and Multiculturalism, Canada.


Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)


Related post – Raising the first monument to victims of communist crimes in Croatia – an exercise of communist inhumanity





  1. Greetings from Slovenia that beautiful summer of 1991 when our countries returned their stolen sovereignty thank God Croatia followed us otherwise we are going to face the Yugoslav army alone I remember the Serb airplanes bombing us forcing us aganist our will! The sad thing is that I had many Bosnian Croat friends killed in eastern Bosnia by the Serbs, one of my Croat friends from eastern Bosnia was gang raped and then killed with her entire family! and the sad thing she was one of those in love with a United Yugoslavia I guess that was the end of our Yugoslavia project….. more than 200000 Croats was deported with force from Bosnia by the Serbs not to talk about the many croat civilians killed by Serb troops

    • Thank you on your comment, Peter. Indeed project Yugoslavia was never going to last as oppression grew stronger and breathing was hard in the end…it is absolutely heart breaking that so many had to die, endure torture and displacement – let’s trust that all victims will receive justice and let’s work towards that as we breathe

      • I don’t how about the case in Croatia but in Slovenia we were making us self ready for the independence war since 1980 we were secretly arming our population we knew where the train called Yugoslavia was heading and that was destruction and genocide. We were not going to be treated like slaves by Serbia.

      • Good on the Slovenians, Peter.

  2. Croatians should work towards building a memorial to the victims of communism in Zagreb. Maybe one of the squares should be renamed to “Trg Zrtva Komunizma”.

    • The best idea would be to rename Marshal Tito Square into Victims of Communism Square in Zagreb

      • anonymous says:

        hey Ina why not try and start a petition to do that, maybe if a lot of people sign it those delusional communists at Zagreb would have to give in or be viewed as charlatans since they always state they are for the peoples will. Plus with the recent polling showing how unpopular they are politically they would probably do it to try and regain votes.

      • Great idea, anonymous, we must check in and see where the citizens’ movements against Marshal Tito Square are and continue the fight.

      • alija derzelez says:

        Maybe the best would be to rename to “Victims of Ante”.

      • Alija, it’s obvious you love Tito and find it painful to read the truth about that criminal Tito – the head of communist crimes in Yugoslavia, Croatia. As to victims of “fascism” the monument exist in Zagreb and has been for decades – it’s time one for victims of communism is raised and then all the truth will be there for all to look at in the shape of monument. This will come sooner or later because the truth comes out one way or another.

    • Veronika says:

      Why not have a monument outside of the country so people outside can actually know what communists did to them? To this day Canadians (and many others) have NO IDEA what Bleiburg or the Death Marches actually were. I know what Holodomor is and I’m not Ukrainian. If Croatians want a monument in Croatia they should build it ……but it seems they don’t want one. In a country where they still glorify Tito and vote in members of the old red party, this speaks volumes about how they feel about communism. I am so glad this is being done in Canada, seeing as Croatian diplomacy abroad has done NOTHING in promoting these issues in the countries where they serve.

      • Well said, Veronika – particularly the last phrase re Croatian diplomacy – hopeless so far in majority of cases.

  3. Communism is sickening. But so is Greater Serbia; it’s even worse for Croatia. Remember Serbia was rewarded for it’s genocide and Greater Serbia terrorism, not just during the homeland war but as far back as WWI and WWII. Serbs have always been protected and rewarded. How sickening and revolting is the Serb Republic in BiH? I believe that there should also be a big memorial to victims of Greater Serbia. In my view this and their sympathizers is the primary evil in Croatia.

    • So agree with you, Sunman, as to Serb Republic in B&H it’s high time for it to be torn apart – it is founded on genocide and the message there is, as you say, one gets rewarded for genocide. sickening.

    • Veronika says:

      Greater Serbs are an extension of Communism. Communists fought for Yugoslavia, which was/is effectively Greater Serbia. They just call it by another name. In WW2 many Chetniks just changed their uniforms and joined the Partisans. Today Communism is praised by many on the planet. People, particularly left leaning reporters ignore the plights of millions in modern day gulags because they believe in this collective b.s. I think back to the early days of the war of aggression on Croatia where reporters literally backed the JNA and reported what Belgrade based Tanjug was saying. Imagine that. Western journalists supporting an army fighing under the Red Star, which is worse than the Swastika in terms of number of peoples killed globally. Today, look at BiH. If you go to Sarajevo the Vjecna Vatra is for communists, there is also a massive portrait of Tito in the government offices. Croatia has Trg Marshala and a Shrine in Kumrovec. Amazing how brain-washed some of those people continue to be. Imagine if they were Nazis? How would we react then?

  4. another anonymous opinion says:

    my parents immigrated to Canada here in the early 70s and I as well as my younger brother were born here. One of my cousins who lives in Croatia was part of the war between the Croats and Serbs and to this day he is on medication for his nerves and his mother has not been the same obviously since her son first took part. Its not easy obviously but I am glad the genocide is over. i still remember seeing a picture of him wearing his uniform and his armed gun and all. Pretty scary stuff. And he is in his late 40s early 50s I would say right now I think. I could just imagine all that he has seen and had to do to fight for his country. Its hard when you have no choice but to get into a war you don’t want and have to fight and kill people and have to go through so much stuff just to keep safe. I am glad the war is over. Mind you I have a lot of Serbian, Bosnian friends out there and it does not matter to me who you are, where you came from, you cannot help from how you were born into. Its really sad how the world judges but hey I’m not a critic that’s just the way things go but hopefully some day we can all just get along and stop this WAR no matter what country you live in.

  5. I am so proud that Canada recognizes Croatia’s struggles towards democracy.

    • It’s amazing stuff, Carol. I think a country could do no better than to recognise the historical struggles and rights of her people, after all, it is the people who make a country what it is. Cheers

      • I’ve always liked the diversity in Canada. The neighborhood I live in is very multicultural – it gives it a fascinating color and opens minds.

      • It’s the way to be, I think, Carol – we are richer in spirit and knowledge through multiculturalism – it is a kind of a celebration of cultures living together and ideally learning from each other.

      • So true. 🙂 This is one of the aspects I enjoy about blogging. It allows me to meet people from around the globe and learn about different philosophies, different cultures, different ways of thinking. Had it not been for your blog I never would have been made so aware about the situation in Croatia. 🙂

      • Aw, thank you, Carol 🙂

  6. alija derzelez says:

    I don’t like Tito I just live in this country ,Karamarko tried to play your game(will get rid of red star ,make us love Tudman and great works of Susak)anyways he has gotten hammered by everybody to the point where people believes he is the stupidest politician and the most hated etc.The truth is its open game here,

    • Ah Alija, you poor thing. Actually when you look at the truth no one who loves Tudjman – and that is a great deal – needed any help with that love: it came from the mind and heart and those who do not like Tudjman also have a right not to like him. This post is about communist crimes and the need to condemn and judge them, the need to ensure full history is on the books. I play no game, nor do the Canadians referred to in this post – to recognise victims of any crime is not a game but to hide and deny the victims’ their rights is a game, which should not be tolerated.

    • Alija, it’s called propaganda. It’s been a very popular political and media tool since WWII and this is what you’ve based your judgements on. Propaganda. Believing that everyone is laughing at those who openly love or respect Tudjman (whether they’re Karamarko or just the everyman) when in reality, the leftist media makes a mountain out of a molehill in an attempt to make their accepted version of reality more popular. That reality is of course, the “no one likes the idiotic nationalists/patriots because their values are so out of date, haha everyone hates you” narrative. However, since you’re so adamant on keeping yourself willingly blind, you fail to see how numerous we “Tudjman lovers” (or nationalists/fascists/Nazis, to use a few favourite words of the media) actually are and we don’t need the words of Karamarko or anyone to realise the truth and follow our values without playing any games. It’s people like you who play idiotic games in order to try and slander people’s reputations and belittle their values, so my advice to you is: stop self-projecting. (And if people really do dislike Karamarko as much as you say, trust me, they don’t love the other option very much either).

      • alija derzelez says:

        Well no,my opinion is based on reality,Tudman,Mesic,Milanovic and Josipovic are,were commies,only you for unknown reason believe they won by default.Your idol Vrhovnik actually had way better opinion of Drug Tito then I do,You are lucky for two reasons,first living in Canada and second,you like cherry picking way too much… Deleted as inappropriate and containing accusations in relation to Bleiburg massacre without providing facts that may corroborate

  7. Svakako preporucujem procitati… Hvala Ina na odlicnom clanku…

    • Translation of Slavica Patz comment: I recommend this for reading in every way … Thank you Ina for an excellent article …
      REPLY: Thank you Slavica, much appreciate your comment.

  8. It’s sad to read people’s stories of struggles and attempts to escape communist oppression, then see today’s generation being so ignorant to the evils of collectivism. However, it’s good to see communist crimes being recognised in any way at all. A start is a start. Thanks, Canada, but there’s a long way to go.

  9. Interesting and informative. Always a lot to learn here.

  10. Hello! Wish you have a fantastic day.
    Congratulations. I nominated you for The Versatile Blogger.
    For more details, please check http://createthissimple.wordpress.com/2014/06/04/4th-versatiles-blogger-award/

  11. I come to you with love Especially for You much happiness and good health transmits the iubire.Va want a magical evening and a good night sleep and blessed.



  12. Zrinka Stampalia says:

    Dear Ina, I am so happy that You started your Blogging, for me is a constant pleasure and great place to get inform about topics that is so interesting to me as Croatian Emmigrant from Sibenik, Dalmatia living with my close Family in Boca Raton, Florida since January, 1990 just six month ahead of Croatian Homeland War (CHW). The rest of my Family still lives in Croatia and they lived there during CHW from 1990. It is only with God’s help, that is my strong belief, that we escape all terrible things, especially my children, who were twelve and eight year old at that time, and were raised in Socialistic/ Communistic Yugoslavia, never listening or learning anything about Nationalistic Stories of Croatia or Serbia or any other Nations from former Yugoslavia.
    On the other hand, I and my Family , not speaking for my husband, who studied Medicine in Zagreb, during 1971. and personally wittnessed all ‘Croatian Spring’ Uprising, was always aware of Croatian Thousand Year National Sufferring and long Yearning for Indenpendance and living in peace and prosperity on own turf. Unfortunately, watching and following all news, even cutting out from local newspapers articles about happenings in Yugoslavia, sufferring because my Mother, Brother and Sister and their Families were there and I could not do anything to help them, at the end I expected that Truth and Justice will prevail, things will turn for better, today ugly Communist Politicians still ruling out their way and trying to divide, totally exhausted, wounded and poor Croatian people, for own benefit and prosperity. For Communist Politician nothing is Holly, only own Intrests and Materialistic Gain. They are trying to divide Croatian People the same way how, thru the History, all occupators did, from Romans, Venetian, French-Napoleons, Ottomans, Austro-Hungarians, Great Serbians/Karadjorgevichs Royalty, Germans/Italian Fascists and at the end Russian/Communist. They split Croatian Families they are still acting thru all theirs means all over My Croatia that I dearly love. But to end my Lamentations: God and Croatia!!! Devil will not prevail! You can see Ukrainian People sufferring, too from the same Evils! Their Anthem is having very similar words like in Croatian Language!
    I love Ukrainian People and praying for Peace and better future for Croatia and Ukraina!!!
    Ina, thank You for all what You doing with Your Blogging!!! May God Bless You and Our Land Crroatia forever!!!

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