Persecuting Journalist In Croatia For Exposing Serb Orthodox Priests Glorifying Chetnik Murderers

Marko Juric Host: Z1TV "Mark's Square" Program Photo: Screenshot Z1 TV Croatia January 2016

Marko Juric
Host: Z1TV “Mark’s Square” Program
Photo: Screenshot Z1 TV Croatia January 2016

 

No judge, no jury – Croatia’s e-media (electronic media regulatory body in Croatia) has decided last week to temporarily shut down the broadcasting of Z1 TV programs as its draconian and utterly communist Yugoslavia-style response to opinion or comment expressed by TV program “Markov Trg” (Mark’s Square) host Marko Juric and an utterly ugly and hateful lynch against Juric was thus unleashed in public without any regard to justice or justification and indeed the right to “fair comment”, which – by the way – is and has been a solid rock for journalists to hold onto in defense of their opinions or comments throughout developed democracies of the Western world. Regretfully, Croatian democracy or democratic thought and deed have a long way to go before it can safely be said that Croatian citizens are truly safe from terrorist communist whips.

Specifically, the episode of Mark’s Square TV program, “Gvozdansko Versus Floral Square”, hosted by Marko Juric, included video material in which the current leaders/priests of Sebrian Orthodox Church in Zagreb Croatia along with their Serbian Orthdox Church officials sing Chetnik songs and praise the war criminal Momcilo Djujic. For those who may not be aware the Serb rebels in Croatia and the Serbs who attacked Croatia in 1991 (and later Bosnia and Herzegovina), slaughtering Croats and other non-Serbs, ethnically cleansing of them a third of Croatian territory – called themselves “Chetniks” as meaning Serbian royalist WWII Chetnik fighters; Momcilo Djujic was a Serb Orthodox Church priest who appointed himself a Chetnik during WWII and led the slaughter of some 2,000 innocent Croats in the Dalmatian region, he was also instrumental in perpetuating the Chetnik ideals throughout the Serb-aggression against Croatia and Bosnia and Hercegovina in the early 1990’s despite his advanced age.

 

Just before the last minute of the said TV program Marko Juric ended it, commenting: “…and another message to dear people of Zagreb, to all of you who stroll across the Floral Square, be careful, as nearby there stands a church in which, to paraphrase a Serbian Minister – Chetnik Vicars keep court. Hence, my dear Zagrebians, when you stroll along the Floral Square, especially mothers with children, take care so that one of those Vicars doesn’t run out of the church and, in his best slaughtering manner, executes his bloody feast on our most beautiful square in Zagreb, which perhaps should be marked with a plaque: “Beware – Sharp Chetnik Nearby.”

Left Serbian Orthodox Church Metropolitanate for Zagreb (and Ljubljana) Porfirije singing songs praising Serb Chetnik murderers January 2016, Photo: Screenshot Youtube 26 January 2016

Left Serbian Orthodox Church
Metropolitanate for Zagreb (and Ljubljana) Porfirije
singing songs praising Serb Chetnik murderers
January 2016, Photo: Screenshot Youtube 26 January 2016

When one considers the video material in which the Zagreb’s Serb Orthodox Church priests/leaders sing praises to murderers and war criminals, having in mind the fact that Croatia’s Homeland War, in which the Serbs were the aggressors, wounds have still not healed…one can only conclude that Marko Juric’s comment was more a fair comment and a fair opinion and not hate speech as Croatia’s communist league are branding it.
But regardless of what Marko Juric’s comment was, how it is branded, one would think that the measures of closing a television program/station for even a day would be a decision that only a court could make after all evidence is tested! After all, people’s livelihoods and freedoms are at stake. Criminal sanctions have been brought against Z1 TV by e-media regulatory body without even seeing a criminal court, let alone having the benefit of due process!

Protest in Zagreb Croatia 26 January 2016 in support of Marko Juric & Z1 TV Calling for sacking of head of e-media Photo: Facebook

Protest in Zagreb Croatia 26 January 2016
in support of Marko Juric & Z1 TV
Calling for sacking of head of e-media
Photo: Facebook

I am utterly guttered with disappointment that the Croatian authorities have not stepped in with appropriate steps to stop such practices. It’s true that this unfortunate and utterly unjust measure to shut the TV station down occurred during the days when the old “communist” government was on its way out in Croatia and the new one coming in last week, but this move by the e-media demonstrates clearly that public institutions are very much saturated with politics and need swift stripping down… If Croatia’s relevant laws or regulations permit a government agency such as e-media to shut down a public media outlet overnight, on basis of opinions about opinions expressed by journalists, without testing those opinions in a court of justice, then Croatia had during the mandate of the former communist-prone government of Zoran Milanovic slipped further back into the dark ages when the same people were your accuser, your judge, your jury and your executioner! Very disturbing, indeed.

Protest for freedom of speech for support of journalist  Marko Juric and Z1TV is "bigger than Ben Hur" on 26 January 2016 Zagreb Croatia Way to go! Photo: Boris Kovacev/CroPix

Protest for freedom of speech
for support of journalist
Marko Juric and Z1TV is
“bigger than Ben Hur” on
26 January 2016 Zagreb Croatia
Way to go!
Photo: Boris Kovacev/CroPix

It goes without saying: generally laws against inciting hatred should be universal and prohibit all incitements to hatred – not just some. And so, how come the doors of that Serb Orthodox church in Zagreb still remain open despite the fact that their priests and leaders incite hatred – incite or glorify murder of Croats through songs they sing at festive official receptions, soirées, etc.!
Singling out sides like the Croatian e-media has in this case creates resentment among people who are not protected by laws of hate speech or incitement to hatred – in this case it seems Croatians are not protected from Serb Orthodox priests singing praise to Chetniks who murdered many thousands innocent Croats through history but especially painful murders are the most recent ones from 1990’s, which is bad for community cohesion, to say the least. Everyone should be equal before the law, in which case all incitements of hatred should be an offense, however, fair comments must not be confused as hate speech and where politics drive agendas fair comments will often be presented as hate speech and the government instruments should be there to prevent this.
Under the condition of clearly marking hate speech there are sound arguments to justify a prohibition on inciting hatred as it is deemed to be a method of protecting people and creating a social atmosphere where subjects of hatred have redress against their tormentors. Another argument for protection against hate speech is that hatred is the gateway to discrimination, harassment and violence. It is without a doubt the psychological foundation for serious, harmful criminal acts. On these grounds, laws against inciting hatred are ethically justified and have practical benefits as long as they do not tolerate “trigger happy” individuals who take the law into their own hands such as the heads of e-media in Croatia have these past days.

Many thousands line the streets of Zagreb calling for sacking of heads of e-medija Croatia 16 January 2016 Photo: Facebook

Many thousands line the streets of Zagreb
calling for sacking of heads of e-medija Croatia
16 January 2016
Photo: Facebook

The downside of incitement to hatred prohibitions (laws), of course, is that they seriously risk infringing freedom of speech. Who decides what constitutes hatred? Where do you draw the line between legitimate robust criticism and satire, and illegitimate, criminal incitement of hatred? It isn’t simple and straightforward anywhere except, it seems, in Croatia (and other former communist Yugoslavia countries) where lustration has not been implemented and die-hard communists still hold important positions from which they can do as they please. The move to shut down Z1 TV for what Marko Juric said, out of his duty as a public journalist, in order to show the public the hatred still being spread through the Serbian Orthodox Church in Croatia is a terrible betrayal of Croatian people and justice. The heads of e-media in Croatia should be sacked forthwith! The head of Mirjana Rakic, head of e-medija, must roll!  Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)

 

Comments

  1. I have no words for this. Seriously. I am in utter shock. Talk about suppression of democratic free speech! Thanks for bringing this issue to our attention.

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  2. Wow… The tension between the Serbs and Croatians goes way back. I was watching a thing on YouTube how the Serbs wanted to form an empire of Slavs prior to WWI…

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  3. If the TV station is silenced, the sanction is so great that journalists will be terrified of saying anything controversial, in case a similar sanction is applied.

    Hate speech laws increase freedom of speech generally rather than reducing it. For example, hate speech against gay people silences the gay people, and prevents the whole society from benefiting from their particular perspective.

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    • Yes it’s terrible in this instance as shutting down even temporarily is a criminal sanction really, Clare, and no person should have that power as to against inciting hatred they do indeed exist to protect people and minorities and give them redress but the policing must be tight as to powers given to monitors or regulators as hate speech attracting sanctions must be tested in independent courts

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  4. It’s so awful people don’t have freedom of speech in this day and age. Keep fighting, Croatians are strong people! Thanks for sharing this article.

    MaryJane

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  5. Dishearteningly horrible news – and rendered even more so by the apparent reality that yet again, religion is misused as the platform for the incitement of hatred and the glorification of violence. We hear so much of in this era of enhanced fundamentalism. Where have philosophies of peace, of tolerance gone?

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    • It’s awful what has happened Jasna and Marko Juric was right in alerting the Croatian public of goings on behind the church walls that’s capable of inciting hatred and violence. But, it’s obvious Croatia urgently needs lustration and old communist operatives who have not nor do like Croatia’s independence and democracy must be gotten rid of, retired from pivotal roles in society and public administration

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  6. Are we surprised? The Reds still sit in positions of power in Croatia. In the 1990s, libel came out of the very red, so-called Feral Tribune and other media outlets and not a thing was done. Yet then people cried about lack of freedom of the press under President Tudjman, yet who was jailed? Who was shut down like Juric today? Until the communist thugs are lustrated from these positions of power this assault on some non-reds in the media will continue and people like Juric, Bujica and others will be muzzled. Ina — what Ministry does the media fall under in Croatia? This new minister needs to be involved asap.

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    • It’s awful what has happened Jasna and Marko Juric was right in alerting the Croatian public of goings on behind the church walls that’s capable of inciting hatred and violence. But, it’s obvious Croatia urgently needs lustration and old communist operatives who have not nor do like Croatia’s independence and democracy must be gotten rid of, retired from pivotal roles in society and public administration

      Like

    • I believe it’s the ministry of maritime, traffic & infrastructure (pomorstva, prometa i infrastrukture) Veronika but it’s not something one can find out by simply going to gov website also there are now Government Agencies such as e-medija and I’m yet to see whether it answers directly to some parliament committee or a ministry…Cheers

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  7. This seems to be the norm, nowadays. The Serbs preaching hatred are the ones who are guilty, but anyone who points out their Chetnik hate speech is attacked with a false accusation. It’s a very Communist approach, and similar to the way Facebook and YouTube have shut down attempts to illuminate Palestinian incitement of terrorism. Hate speech laws have just become a vehicle for shutting down free speech and persecuting those who are not politically correct.

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    • And it’s so infuriating, Mishka – to think that after twenty years since the end of war/military action in Croatia and twenty five since secession from communism the fight against communism is as relevant and present as always. I did use to say it’d take some 30 years to shed communist ways in Croatia and as things look now unless some serious head-rolling occurs and processes of democracy are installed rather than waited for to occur as it happens in many instances it seems. I await for courageous people to speak more against the abuse of hate speech concept, in Croatia there are quite a few loud people pointing to the fact that Serb priests inciting hatred like that must face consequences etc…

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  8. Lustration, now.

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  9. Reblogged this on idealisticrebel and commented:
    Ina, will Croatia ever become a peaceful country without hatred and racism?
    I wish I could talk to you and understand it the way you do. The United Nations should step in and require that all the rhetoric and hate speech end immediately. I realize that I am not very knowledgeable about this but
    why can’t Serbs have Serbia and Croatians have Croatia? So many innocent lives sacrificed for what? Surely, there are those who want peace.
    Is peace impossible? Hugs, Barbara

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    • Very good question, Barbara – I think peace is possible but only when minorities in Croatia regardless of which ethnic group they belong start respecting Croatia as they home rather than forever turning to country of origin for daily existence…Serbs have been a minority in Croatia for hundreds of years and yet most have not accepted Croatia as home! Serbs have been well known to keep saying: wherever a Serb lives, it is Serbia! There are many who want peace but its the few stirrers that spoil everything for everyone. Hugs

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  10. presvetli says:

    Bravo Ina Vukic , big respect, while you write there is hope that the truth be known

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    • Aw, thank you,presvetli – much appreciate your feedback and this is a very important truth to pass on, cannot depend on mainstream Croatian media when much of it will not treat this news as it should be: most important for Croatian freedom.

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  11. Let’s hope this is sorted very quickly.
    It’s a little confusing in some ways. You can see it might have been Communist inspired to shut down a station with journalists outside their control but I’m surprised they didn’t take the opportunity to snipe at the church who are not their friends and in this case were celebrating the killing of their own people.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

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  12. All hate speech laws are full of shit and need to go. The way to deal with REAL hate speech is to expose it to the light, expose how wrong it is, mock it & make sure no one takes it seriously. But most hate speech laws are used to suppress opinions (and even facts) that go against the currently popular leftist/progressive mindset, which has infiltrated all mainstream media across the world. Croatia is, unfortunately, not alone. Hate speech laws do not protect anyone, it only helps the morally corrupt authoritarians to impose their will on all.

    On a somewhat related note, what is even more unfortunate for Croatia is the constant rehabilitating of chetnik war criminals. Chetnik sympathisers are even trying to use social media to turn the current migrant crisis into a justification of their slaughter throughout Bosnia. Too bad they can’t use the “evil Muslim” excuse to justify their killing of non-Muslims throughout the region, but I am sure they’ll attempt that too. This is just an extension of the media/propaganda war against Croatia in the 1990s. We need to be more clever and use social media & the internet in our favour.

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  13. I have great respect for the people who seek and write the truth. This man had my respect. This is a needed piece of information.

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  14. Weekend placut Ina ! 🙂

    Aliosa.

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  15. Ina, the story continues….it’s like a sad circus over there. The reds were correct, they will NEVER give up power as Milanovic stated when he lost the election. This is a war only not with guns, at least not yet. Sadly nothing will change until the new government cleans up the justice system, police system, ministry staff, cuts funding to the hate-spreading NGOs, and lustrates everyone from the top down. I am utterly disgusted that even members of the centre-right media were aghast when Glasnovic suggested lustrating former UDBA agents from the media. My analogy is this: is it normal for an x-KGB agent to now run/work at/control the state run (tax payer funded) TV broadcaster in Poland or Ukraine????? This nonsense is going on in Croatia. And while the reds revel in pulling up dirt on Crnoja and others, the media gives them a free pass on SDP-er Bauk and their sins/crimes. Talk about lack of professionalism and ethics. I pray that Minister Hasanbegovic can come in and at least clean up some of this vile communist drek!

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    • See it all and am in total disbelief, shaking my head in pain to see such communist kicking about there, Veronika. I hope the centre-right together with general Glasnovic have enough strength to implement liustration, Veronika, it was a given that former communists will kick about violently, resisting giving up power in disgrace ie in the climate that says oit you communist so and so…

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  16. Enhorabuena por tu blog, que tengas mucho éxito. Te dejo el mio si te animas a seguirme, espero que te guste. http://fotografiarocioph.com/
    Y mi página de Facebook donde puedes seguir viendo mis trabajos, gracias. https://www.facebook.com/empiezaporunsolopaso/

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  17. Thanks for this very thoughtful post about a disturbing development.

    Like

  18. Justice shall prevail. Free speech shall prevail. The media can never be held down for ever.

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  19. Hate speech and free speech are hot topics right now as censorship and false reporting take the headlines globally! Censorship in the US? Absolutely! The game is upside down topsy-turvy and has us all befuddled trying to figure out what is Truth.

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  20. Brilliant article on free speech Ina you teach me more about your country and its political perspective every post thanks Ian posted here on our news room http://wp.me/p4NkMr-eN

    Like

  21. So glad you like the articles, Ian – much appreciate the feedback

    Liked by 1 person

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