Today, 5th August 2015 is the 20th Anniversary of the Operation Storm, of liberation of Croatia, which put an end to the bloody and brutal Serb aggression and Croatia was liberated on that day from Serb occupation! While Serbs and Serbia will and have come out with barrages of denials of their own crimes of aggression, painting themselves as victims rather than aggressors – just as they did when 20th Anniversary of Srebrenica genocide was marked last month – Croatia is filled with pride at its achievements, bravery and independence.
Today, 20 years after the hard won victory over the Serb aggressor Croatia’s first president Franjo Tudjman, who led Croatia into independence and democracy, secession from communist Yugoslavia received a greatest gift of gratitude: a monumental statue of him and a monumental honour to his name were unveiled at the town of Knin, the centre of the Croatian territory Serbs occupied during the war and ethnically cleansed of all Croats and non-Serbs by mid-1992.
The base of the monumental statue of Franjo Tudjman in Knin is solid weight of stone that says:
“On this place, on 6th August 1995, dr Franjo Tudjman, the First President Of Croatia, victoriously kissed the Croatian flag and said these words: We have Croatia.”
Yesterday, on Tuesday 4th August, a Croatian Army parade was held in the capital Zagreb to mark the 20th anniversary of Operation Storm and victory over the Serb aggressor, with 3,000 participants marching through the centre of the city, with spirits high and cheers and deep respect for those whose life was lost in the defence of the homeland, freedom and democracy. This parade was the first part of the official celebrations held in Croatia, the second part is being held in the heroic town of Knin today, as I said, where battles for freedom and liberation of occupied territory were led in August 1995with utmost determination to be free of the scourge of communism Serb aggression represented.
In attendance at the Army parade in Zagreb were Croatia’s top leadership including President Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic who inspected the procession before ordering the start of the parade, Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic, Minister for defence Ante Kotromanovic, almost all government ministers, political elite and the not so elite, thousands of citizens and war veterans.
Members of historical detachments in colourful uniforms, coming from all parts of Croatia, attracted special attention by the audience. Croatian cadets and members of allied countries drew wide smiles from the onlookers and revellers.
The centerpiece of the artistic program was the performance of the national anthem “Our Beautiful Homeland” by a 12-year-old girl Mia Negovetic and the Croatian Navy “Sveti Juraj” (Saint George) a cappella band.
HAPPY VICTORY, HAPPY LIBERTY – CROATIA! Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)