Setting Right Croatian War Veterans’ Rights

From right: Retired General Zeljko Glasnovic and Retired Colonel Mijo Crnoja In front of veterans' protest tent Zagreb Croatia Photo: hdz.hr

From right: Retired General Zeljko Glasnovic
and Retired Colonel Mijo Crnoja
In front of veterans’ protest tent
Zagreb Croatia
Photo: hdz.hr

If the Croatian Prime Minister designate, Tihomir Oreskovic, accepts the HDZ/Croatian Democratic Union nomination for the new Minister of Veterans Affairs the Croatian war veterans would, after several years of degradation by the leftist political winds finally reap their deserved rewards.

Friday 22 January 2016 is widely touted as the date when the composition of Croatia’s new government will be revealed. Prime Minister designate, Tihomir Oreskovic, has been working closely with the elected conservative HDZ and Most/Bridge coalition parliamentarians since he was appointed the PM designate less than a month ago.
All eyes it seems – in Croatia and abroad – are turned to this as expectations of miracles that will save the country from the economic abyss, a bottomless black hole since foreign debt has reached 90% of GDP – are hot and seething with restless anticipation.

 

Retired Colonel Mijo Crnoja Photo: hdz.hr

Retired Colonel Mijo Crnoja
Photo: hdz.hr

According to Croatia’s news portal Jutarnji List, Retired Colonel Mijo Crnoja has accepted the HDZ nomination for the minister of veterans affairs portfolio. Colonel Crnoja was put forward as candidate for the post by Croatia veterans who say that through Crnoja the dignity of Croatian soldiers/veterans will be restored. Fortunately, there are very few countries in the world that have treated their war veterans as poorly as the Croatian Social Democrat, leftist, Zoran Milanovic’s government and former communist presidents Stjepan Mesic and Ivo Josipovic have. The former Yugoslav communists of Croatia had done everything in their power to degrade, defame and destroy the spirit and might of Croatia’s brave war veterans of 1990’s to whom Croatia owes its freedom to an overwhelming extent. All that may well be behind us with when the new government sets sail forward in a week or so.

Crnoja’s whole life’s and war path have been dedicated to the fight for a just and free Croatia and to the protection of Croatian veterans’ dignity, says HDZ portal.
Reportedly there’s a new program developed, headed by HDZ’s Zeljko Dilber (head of HDZ’s committee for veterans). Reportedly the program includes the compilation of a “register of traitors of national interests” which may well be perceived as a step within a lustration process that would rid Croatian pivotal public service and administration and authorities of those who had worked in high positions within the communist Yugoslavia secret services and allied operations of power.

And what else is in the document called “The work program for the Veterans of the Croatian Homeland War“?

The 29 points within the program also include “prosecution of war criminals from the aggressor army, stronger representation of the Homeland War in the school curricula and textbooks, and the establishment of permanent co-operation and support of veterans’ associations.” The program points also refer to the plan for the “Constitutional law to protect the honour and dignity of the Croatian Homeland War veterans,” and that the “achievements of Croatian soldiers who went into the War will worthily be marked via anniversaries with co-financing of the memorials and to provide support for publishing on topics from the war“.

 

In the chapter titled “Ensuring lasting and full care for Croatian war veterans and their families“, which has eight points, there is the provision that “all the rights of Croatian defenders are to be regulated by one law which will be incorporated into the Constitution.” The program then states that the “veterans of the HVO (Croatian Defense Council) are a part of a single and indivisible Croatian defense corps – Croatian Army, and that their status will permanently be resolved“. The program stipulates that “Croatian war veterans will receive a patriotic or war supplement, and that they will never be brought into the situation of having to fight for their social rights,” and that “ war invalids will have priority in the use of public health services.” Furthermore, the program states that the withdrawn pension rights will be reinstated in accordance with the economic and financial recovery in the country… all that the program will “take care of housing through implementation of favourable measures such as affordable unit purchase price, tenancy protection, rights of first refusal, and subsidised housing.”
With regards to including the Croatian veterans into the sociopolitical and public life the program aims to include the veterans in all the institutions and authorities in the Republic of Croatia (Parliament, Government, ministries, diplomacy, secret services, office of president …); inclusion of veterans in vigorous employment programs and re-training where necessary or desired.

Affordable and subsidised loans to Croatian defenders entrepreneurs and business owners who employ Croatian defenders; Support for projects to businesses that employ Croatian defenders; start-up assistance for entrepreneurs veterans (favorable lease office space, require professional assistance and advice, technical assistance, professional training or retraining and available sources of financing in the years of new business start-up cycles); The use of EU funds – expert working groups (veterans, war veterans’ children), apply to programs for the Croatian defenders.
In reality, this program largely reflects the demands of the veteran protesters that had camped in a tent for more than a year in front of the ministry of veterans affairs.

Retired Colonel Mijo Crnoja (left) Retired General Zeljko Glasnovic (right) speaking in veterans' protest tent Zagreb, Croatia Photo: hdz.hr

Retired Colonel Mijo Crnoja (left)
Retired General Zeljko Glasnovic (right)
speaking in veterans’ protest tent
Zagreb, Croatia
Photo: hdz.hr

In summary, the program that will lift Croatian veterans’ dignity and pin due value to the Croatian Homeland War and independence under the leadership of Mijo Crnoja is as follows:

• Publication of the register the aggressors against Croatia
• Publication of the register of the traitors of national interests Croatia
• Publication of the register of illegally performed privatisations
• Lustration at all levels
• Stronger representation of the Homeland War in the school curricula and textbooks
• Defenders will receive a patriotic or war supplement to their income
• Consistent application of legislation on the benefits of hiring veterans and children of killed, detained or missing in state owned companies
• The inclusion of veterans in all the institutions and authorities in the Republic of Croatia
• Favourable measures/conditions for housing
• Favorable and subsidised loans to veterans entrepreneurs and business owners who hire veterans.

 

There’s a consensus among Croatian veterans and retired war defense force officers, which says: “The economic state our country finds itself in is unacceptable for the participants of the Homeland War. Something has to change strongly and decisively in Croatia.

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

Comments

  1. This will be a big test for Croatia. Crnoja’s program is almost too good, it’s excellent and it’s what’s needed but to achieve lustration is more than impossible with the corrupt old communists still lurking about in corridors of power. Then there will be opposition for register of traitors and aggressors – there are many too friendly with those in power and some even in power… I read in media that he will not succeed and will not be selected

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    • Ah Yes, Wilkinson, I too hear that there are many against his nomination exactly for reasons that are not in favour of veterans but protective of corruption or traitors – but Crnoja can hold his head up high in that he can say he tried… what an achievement it is even to come out with what needs to be done in that climate where many communists still roam

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  2. Great plan. Milo is a lovely man, whose family comes from beautiful Jajce, Bosnia-Hercegovina. I hope and pray this program will be put into place. Thanks Ina.

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  3. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:
    GOOD INTENTIONS—WILL HAVE POSITIVE RESULTS? hOPE SO!

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  4. Ina we await your reports from the day today at Sabor! Pisi sto prije!

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  5. Many Vietnam veterans in the USA(America) ended up living on the streets with all sorts of mental,emotional and physical wounds. I hope Croatia has not allowed this to happen to their Vets. The Vietnam Vets were not fighting a home war like Croatia. Many went to fight Communism.
    Moreover many international volunteers served Croatia in different ways. They don’t live in Croatia today but were patriotic for Croatia.They came for different reasons,and have received a very negative ,indifferent false international reputation.
    Some came for money,adventure ,etc but many came for democratic ,religious defencive reasons.They are not entitled or most likely don’t want modern Croatian day veteran assistance.
    However I’m sure many would appreciate recognition for their part rather than silent expressions from outside Croatia especially

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    • Hopes a high that veterans’ “fortunes” will change to the positive tune in Croatia, Joe – and yes it’s such a terrible injustice what has occurred regarding the welfare and care for Vietnam veterans, even if the went out to fight Communism they were sent there by their country and their country must take care of their rights … it is not so in many cases and thus the need to press on continues

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  6. Reblogged this on Integrity Above All , Truth Is Our Weapon To Victory , Our Freedom Gained and commented:
    Viet nam Vets come to mind here

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  7. I read the number of veterans receiving ongoing financial payments for service in the HR homeland war far exceeds the number of actual participants in the war. Is this true? Are there actual numbers to compare these two figures?

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    • I believe there is truth in that, and it doesn’t surprise me as there were in Yugoslavia more Partisans claiming benefits than what there were in the WWII, Jerry. I believe that the so-called Veteras’ public register was devised in Croatia as an attempt to try and weed out false veterans – I believe there have been some false ones identified but the problem is probably not completely solved.

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Trackbacks

  1. […] new veterans affairs minister Mijo Crnoja (I’m so pleased to know the man I wrote about in my previous post has made it to Minister!) attracted hateful comments and protests from the same camp: Social […]

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  2. […] new veterans affairs minister Mijo Crnoja (I’m so pleased to know the man I wrote about in my previous post has made it to Minister!) attracted hateful comments and protests from the same camp: Social […]

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