WWII Croatia: The US Airmen And The Baroness!

Photo: Screenshot of final scenes in the film “The Airmen and the Baroness”

For this Christmas holiday season, I am thrilled to be among the first people to tell you of a new film that brings to life, through role play, testimonies of American Airmen whose planes crashed during WWII on the territory of Independent State of Croatia and who were looked after and cared for by the Croatian people. Although presenting facts and testimonies of American Airmen as POWs in war-torn Independent State of Croatia, that was at the time determined to become a free country, free from the terror, persecution and cruel dictatorship of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia ruled by the Serbian Monarchy, despite its most cruel enemy in its quest for freedom, the communist partisans who fought to keep Croatia as part of Yugoslavia, this film delivers several truths from that time most skilfully.

Watching this film, for just over one hour of its duration, you will find yourself engrossed and transported to another place that is so far away, strange, and unknown to you and yet you will feel and recognise familiar emotions you feel while witnessing deeply moving humanity. You will be touched, you may even shed a tear of sadness or of joy, and the great likelihood is that you will at the end of this film find yourself gently swaying sideways, dancingly, in your chair, singing along with the film’s cast that great old classic “We’ll meet again ….some sunny day”!

“The Airmen and the Baroness” film poster

The roles of American POW Airmen played by young actors bring the dialogue and testimonies from the screen into our living rooms from where we are in our thoughts and senses transported to WWII Croatia. The assortment and well positioned historical footage of war planes, of photographs, and the intensely focused performances of actors playing the role of real American WWII POWs raise this documentary film above being only a film of record of historical events that occurred some 75 years ago, making it a moving and memorable human-interest story wrapped up in genuine warmth of friendships made in the most difficult and trying of circumstances.  

“The Airmen and the Baroness” is another amazing film (in English with Croatian subtitles) that brings to us the truth about important events in the life of WWII Independent State of Croatia / NDH by Nikola Knez – iFilm – Croatian Film Institute – Texas – USA:

“This film is dedicated to Croatian citizens who provided safe haven for American airmen during the Second World War in Croatia.”

As I said above the special feature of this documentary film is that it contains role plays by actors who represent some of the Airmen who safely returned home after the war and were many years later interviewed by Michael C. McAdams in his research of historical facts and events of WWII Croatia.

“While World War II was raging in Europe, Baroness Vera Nikolic Podrinska, a temperamental artist of great talent, lived on a spacious estate along a wooded winding road above the city of Zagreb in Croatia. She was born in Zagreb in 1886. She has been studying painting since the age of 14, attends the Academy of Fine Arts, and continues her studies in Vienna and Paris.

Baroness Vera Nikolic Podrinska/ Photo: geni.com

During the war, the Baroness became an incredible host and protector of almost a hundred American airmen who crashed over Croatian territory and were captured by the Croatian Armed Forces. Baroness Nikolić considered the pilots to be her guests and afforded them the best possible living conditions in view of the war conditions, including a hearty meal of wine and certificates of salary for their work in her vineyards.

Through personal testimonies based on real events and individuals, this film follows the experiences of several American prisoners who are vividly portrayed through acting characters.

All American prisoners of war remained alive and protected until the end of the war, after which they were safely returned to their troops. Their protectors did not fare well. The war and its aftermath were devastating for the Croatian population, which was decimated by communist partisans and Serbian Chetniks. Baroness Vera Nikolic Podrinska was imprisoned, and her villa and spacious property were confiscated on behalf of the Communist Party (of Yugoslavia). The villa was bombed.

At the same place where it stood, Communist Marshal Tito had a large presidential palace erected.”

I know you will enjoy watching this new film at the following link via which it is also possible to purchase it :

Ina Vukic


  1. I didn’t know this. I will enjoy this movie over the holiday. I’m very late to say thank you, to these wonderful Croatians, for taking care of my countrymen. I owe you.

    • A Happy and blessed Christmas to you and yours Jacqui! May the New Year be filled with joy and pride! This movie does indeed remind us that humanity is possible always! It just takes people! God Bless!

  2. 🙂 (forgot to click subscribe!)

  3. Wow Ina… this sounds a beautiful yet poignant film telling the history of this woman and her mission.. One I had not heard of before..
    So many untold heroic stories and one thinks these times are far behind us.. Yet we see them creep ever closer in the shadows..

    Many thanks for sharing this film Ina…
    Sending you my thoughts for a beautiful Christmas and May the New Year bring us all the freedom these Airmen eventually regained.. And lets not forget why they were fighting, as they tried to stop the rule of tyranny and dictators..

    Lots of Love
    Sue <3

    • Thank you Sue! Needless to say that the totalitarian communist regime of Yugoslavia kept the truth shut and locked away. But thanks be to God and heroic people we are unpicking the lies and suppressions of truth and that is the way this world should be. This film is so touching and eye-opening too. As I prepare for Christmas Day celebrations you came to my thought yesterday and I was thinking “I wonder how Sue is going? I wonder if she is well?” And here you are with a comment and message. God is great! Thank you again for your thoughts and the wisdom you bestow upon us with your writing. A blessed Christmas to all!

      • Bless you Ina… for those thoughts and for your compliments.. Christmas has been lovely spent with family… I hope also you have had a Joyful one with your family…
        Let us both pray that hearts will open and truth from all corners of the globe will begin to emerge .. Releasing people from the fear and Tyranny in this new weaponised war on humanity we now see prevailing on peoples minds..
        Much love dear friend… The Honour is all mine, as we share our thoughts, as we do battle with evil in our midst.. <3 <3 <3

      • Yes Christmas is time to be with those who surround us with love – family and friends! We look forward to a joyous New Year. Hugs Sue

      • Amen to that dear Ina…. Happy New Year for 2022 my friend <3

      • Happy New Year Sue! May good health and joy be with you in every step you take through 2022. Hugs

  4. wow! Ina, this video is a priceless piece on croatian history. now, i am learning more about your country, and appreciating the struggles you went through. i shall definitely drop by for more.

  5. La Mulți Ani, 2022 , Ina !!! 🙂 🙂 🙂


    Alioșa ! 🙂

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