At best, Josip Broz Tito was a complex, conniving and controversial character. His supporters keep saying he led Yugoslavia to free it from fascism because he was an antifascist. His detractors simply point to the fact his Communist “revolution” directly resulted in the murders of more than a million in a country of barely 15 million, a toll matched by the worst of history’s dictators. As much as it might jar with the reality of those who lived through the suffering and terror of his reign, Tito’s name still stands upon the most beautiful public opera house square in Croatia’s capital Zagreb. While president Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic has recently removed the bust of Tito from the Office of the President of Croatia there are still public places from where all reminders to Tito must be removed.
Hopes that Croatia might finally be ready to confront the horrors of its past as part of Tito’s communist Yugoslavia are certainly raised by the removal of the bust from top office and the growing political will to admit to mass crimes and murders committed during Tito’s reign. However, Tito is evidently a potent symbol for leftists within the governing coalition parties that remain blind to the fact that four decades of Tito’s socialist economic reform had gone too far, creating social inequalities like a yawning rich-poor gap, class of political elites and pervasive corruption about which little, apart from sporadic targeting of political “big-wigs”, is being done.
In (misguidedly) venerating Tito, his supporters invariably and falsely accuse his detractors of being fascists, neo-fascists, seemingly resulting in pressure on the current governing left political wing to express its acknowledgment and condemnation of communist crimes perpetrated during Tito’s reign and some after his death in the lowest of possible voices, avoiding, thus, any inkling that their condemnation of these crimes also may mean dissent from Tito’s dictatorial and appalling reign.
But one cannot condemn mass murders even in the lowest of voices and still continue supporting the person responsible for those mass murders! You’d think one couldn’t! But it seems in Croatia everything is possible even veneration of Tito – a mass murderer; even labeling of those who show Tito up for the miserable criminal he was as – wait for it – nazifascists!
Yep, according to the former president of Croatia Stjepan Mesic nazifascists are all those who went to Bleiburg field last week to pay respects to victims of communist crimes! They are revisionists, too, according to the odious communist Mesic. Yessiree! Statute of limitations for charges of mass murder exists for everyone else except Tito! That is what Stjepan Mesic is saying; if you’re reminding the world Tito and his communist totalitarian regime committed murder you – sir/madam – are a revisionist and a nazifascist! Because Tito’s army won World War II in Yugoslavia/Croatia you – sir/madam – cannot speak of their mass murders after the war or those during it! If you do – sir/madam – you are a revisionist and a nazifascist!
Stjepan Mesic was joined by a reported 5 or 6 thousand people (from Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro) on Saturday 23 May 2015 at Kumrovec (Tito’s birth place) where the die-hard Tito-lovers, communist nuts, antifascist fascists and welfare-dependence-lover social riffraff descended to venerate Tito as some kind of a demigod, celebrate his birthday. Their slogans included in rhyme “The more lies and defamation the more we like and love Tito!”
Stjepan Mesic said at Kumrovec on Saturday that they would fight with all available means against the revision of history and that they will never accept “turning the victors into the losers, and losers into victors.” By “they” (we) he meant all those gathered at Kumrovec!
“We are here because of the truth, which cannot be erased,” Mesic said and continued, “All who say that Tito was a criminal and murderer, are liars.”
Sorry to shake your blindly idealistic tree, Stjepan Mesic, but Tito has been categorised by researchers and academic writers of international note among top 15 mass murderers of the 20th century. The only liars around here seem to be Mesic and other Tito supporters.
Mesic then spoke of crimes committed in WWII at Jasenovac and at Bleiburg field. He said these two cannot be compared as equal because innocent people died at Jasenovac and those murdered at Bleiburg lived an orgy for four years and deserved death!
Can you believe that communist filth! Smack in the middle of 2015!
Oh, my goodness, the man (Stjepan Mesic) is dangerous not only for Croatia but also for humanity! He actually continues justifying murder of innocent people by Tito and his communists!
The truth in Bleiburg May 1945 was: when they surrendered at the Bleiburg field the members of the Croatian armed forces fleeing Croatia became British prisoners of war and the tens of thousands of civilians fleeing became asylum seekers. The rights and obligations of all parties came under the Geneva Convention of 27 July 1929. But the British handed them all to Tito and his communist murderers. Stjepan Mesic as all supporters of Tito keep saying that all of the Croats murdered at Bleiburg deserved to die because some of the Croatian soldiers may have committed crimes during the war!
And I, like multitudes of just people would like to ask: What is the guilt of the children, old men, women and the multitudes unarmed soldiers – many barely out of military cadetship – all mercilessly, without trial, slaughtered at Bleiburg in May 1945 and at other places during months that followed across Tito’s Yugoslavia? Of course, Mesic and communist crimes defenders cannot answer that question because these people committed no crimes but yes, they did not want to live under communism and that “sin” is what Mesic calls an “orgy” How very disgusting and depraved.
Regretfully, in today’s democratic and independent Croatia there is still no effective condemnation of communist crimes. Why have the persons who committed those crimes, and who live among the offspring of the victims are not yet brought to justice (except currently in Germany court case against extradited Josip Perkovic and Zdravko Mustac)? Why did the Croatian Parliament only half-heartedly affirm the international move for the condemnation of communist (totalitarian regime) crimes? Answers to these questions can undoubtedly be found in numerous or touching upon numerous matters, but whatever they are they must be addressed, otherwise moving forward into true freedom and democracy in Croatia will become a utopian reality just as communist Yugoslavia ended up becoming. Of course, the children of former hardline communists or former hardline communists themselves are not going to admit to living under the bloodiest utopia in the history of mankind that communist crimes made Yugoslavia become. To admit this many would need to admit to having accepted the practices of spying on fellow citizens and reporting them to secret police, of imprisonments without trials, of persecuting their neighbours, of throwing people out of jobs to make way for politically suitable candidates, etc.; they would have to admit to tolerating an oppressive political regime as long as their own personal life was not oppressed.
Croatia has not held actual people responsible for communist crimes and that is where much of the problem lies when it comes to effectively dealing with these or any crimes. When Josip Boljkovac was charged in relation to multiple/ mass murder immediately after WWII ended the court in Zagreb found in 2014 that these mass murders did occur but that the communist system was the guilty party and not those individuals who ordered, organised and/or executed the killings!
Such judgments and court conclusions only fuel the illusion of former communists that they or their colleagues are not guilty of anything! Not only – not guilty, but actually that righteousness was – in killing innocent people!
This is disturbing, beyond words. Such a politician, as Stjepan Mesic is, should not enjoy the fruits of an ex-president’s office and staff for life paid for by the taxpayers who have actually lost loved ones, lost limbs, lost a whole life to free Croatia from Tito’s Communist Yugoslavia in early 1990’s. I am left flabbergasted and speechless even at the thought that Croatia’s current president would even contemplate speaking to such an abominable creature as Stjepan Mesic is – former president or not! The words that came out of Mesic’s mouth in Kumrovec on Saturday deserve the strongest condemnation and ostracizing of Stjepan Mesic from the Croatian political and public scene. It is disgraceful what that man is capable of saying just to save face of murderers that many communists were, including Tito. Historical revision must be made for the sake of the truth. Communists may have succeeded in presenting history half-baked but today’s democracy demands fully baked one! Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)