Croatia: EU Parliament Elections – Winners are Losers in Dismal 20.84% Voter Turnout!

July 2013 EU Parliament representatives for Croatia   Photo Pixsell

July 2013 EU Parliament representatives for Croatia Photo Pixsell

Were you to observe the media buzz in Croatia, with all the pomp and ceremony (including photos with brightly coloured shawls around politicians shoulders, balloons, confetti, champagne …) you would think there was a major event in Croatia that ended in victories of unseen avalanche  proportions; political landslides large enough to cause earthquakes of at least 9 points magnitude on the Richter scale.

Just prior to the EUP elections held on Sunday 14 April the Electoral Roll was “sorted” (meaning the authorities found that there is now 3,738,708 eligible voters living in Croatia (or have a registered address of abode there). The Croatian Electoral Commission (Državno izborno povjerenstvo/DIP) says that 20.84% of eligible voters actually voted at EUP Elections in Croatia.

This translates into some 780,000 people in total who actually voted.

Out of that number of votes, according to results of 98% counted by DIP, the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ), which also includes candidates of the Croatian Party of Rights Dr Ante Starcevic (HSP AS) and the BUZ pensioners’ party, won 32.93%.
The coalition consisting of the ruling Social Democratic Party (SDP), the Croatian People’s Party (HNS) and the Croatian Pensioners’ Party (HSU) followed with 31.95%.

The Labour Party finished third with 5.76%.

Hence, it is likely that 6 seats will go to HDZ coalition, 5 to SDP coalition and 1 to Labour.

While it is customary to congratulate the winners and say well done to all others who participated in the electoral race, the dismal voter turnout is surely a sign of a political and democratic swamp suffocating Croatia.

Certainly, one cannot claim a victory in the name of the people with the choice of only 20.84% represented in these results.

This is among the WORST voter turnout for EUP in EU history! Furthermore, one could safely conclude that the 2013 EUP elections in Croatia may well reflect the results of much of political party vote recruitment (or voting in accordance with party orders).

The following are votes counted for the winners:

HDZ list of candidates:

Ruža Tomašić (63.882)

Andrej Plenković (37.015)

Dubravka Šuica (30.979)

Davor Stier (13.752)

Ivana Maletić (4.424)

Zdravka Bušić (4.010)
SDP list of candidates:

Tonino Picula (110.278)

Biljana Borzan (17.584)

Marino Baldini (1.631)

Oleg Valjalo (1.325)

Sandra Petrović Jakovina (3.806)
Croatian Labour list: Nikola Vuljanić (6.351)
Not much to celebrate about, is it!?

Flimsy electoral victories if I ever did see one!

Indeed, the many anti-EU Croatian voters have not voted at these elections; others are simply too disillusioned with the government and opposition and do not have enough energy to get out and vote – try and change the political landscape in Croatia (it’s almost like mass depression from widespread unemployment and impoverished living standards is working for the benefit of the “big” political party machinery).

With local government elections coming up in May, HDZ, which has had a difficult time in trying to reinvent itself after its significant loss at the December 2011 general elections, is hopeful that, given its success at the EUP elections, it will also reap similar rewards at the local ones.

SDP with its coalition has lost significant ground among the voters. The EUP voters have sent a strong message to the government it seems.

Or, one major party may have been a better “recruiter” of votes than the other?

While EUP elections voter turnout has been known to be at low levels in several countries, from time to time, in Croatia, where a dismally low voter turnout in January 2012 (around 29%) for EU referendum secured Croatia’s progression into EU membership, these EUP elections in Croatia are a symptom of serious disillusionment with the way democracy is going as well as persistence of the significant anti-EU voter sentiment.

Very low voter turnout also signifies apathy that has the capability of endangering the system of democracy. And when you have this, where people simply do not vote, do not speak up (vote) – for whatever reason – then the wheels of political party machinery that go about securing votes, recruiting votes, really start spinning; to keep the party in power. And, this is usually the least those who do not vote want!

It needs to be said that election campaigns for EUP by candidates have been most humble and certainly not widespread, especially when it comes to the smaller parties and independents’ lists of candidates.  Time was very limited. Also, many would have realised that it would be a “waste” of precious money to try and campaign properly amidst major party activities and various media manipulations.

Be it as it may, the candidate list (Democratic Centre Party) I was on did quite well, considering. We won a total of just over 6,000 votes and this is a great success for which my colleagues and I are most grateful. Our “maiden” voyage into the electoral-scape saw our Joint Movement of Good making a positive impact.  Our program got more votes than some of the electoral “winners” who are “going to Brussels”.

We wish them all the best and mat they do Croatia proud!

If one could go so far as to foresee the future for the next general election in Croatia (2015) on the basis of EUP election results we could be looking at a hung parliament (between the two major party coalitions), or a miracle might happen and people will actually make an effort and go to the polls, vote and create a wonderful new political landscape that will move democracy in Croatia to its deserved and long awaited levels of full citizen participation, thus sever the ties with political elitism inherited from communist times and shatter the seeming “invincibility” of the political elite. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Sydney)


EU Parliament Elections List 8

Dr. Slobodan Lang

presents the Visions of Joint Movement of Good


The Joint Movement of Good appears symbolically after Easter, and in reality, for the first Croatian elections for EU Parliament.

In this appearance, vision, values, values based proposals, the candidates who give the proposals authenticity and legitimacy are most important.

Why is it like that?

Who are the candidates and why are they appearing?

All of the candidates have, though their work and activities, demonstrated that they are Good people and professionals, as well as through their defence of Croatia and in their various areas of knowledge, arts and social activities.

More than half of them have participated in defending Croatia from Vukovar to Dubrovnik, many acted either as émigrés, advisors, organised the refugees and the displaced and their return to their homes, or were interned in Serb concentration camps.

Half of them are university professors and scientists, as in medicine so too in culture, who hold appearances throughout the world, representing knowledge and Croatia.

They act and work in numerous areas, from all parts of Croatia and abroad.

Not a single one of these candidates has enriched himself/her self, nor have any ever been accused of any wrongdoing. They have lived for Croatia, loved Croatia, gave to Croatia and dreamed of future. That’s why I wrote that I believe in God, that I love People and seek Good, and that everything else is less important.

Firstly, it was essential to defend Croatia from aggression and accusations

Since the late nineteen-eighties to today we had three goals in common: defend Croatia as an independent state, defend the accused and defend the whole of Croatia from the accusations of joint criminal enterprise.

Danijel Rehak (HDLSKL/Croatian Association of Detainees in Serb Concentration Camps ) reveals that there were some 70 Serb held concentration camps, which held captive about 30,000 Croatian people. “About three hundred of the captives were killed in the camps while 2,400 were considered as missing. The whole truth about the camps has not been fully considered.”

Darko Dovranic (president of war correspondents Croatian TV HRT) said:
During the aggression we were guided by the idea that only truth can save us. However, today we have forgotten the truth and a great deal remains unsaid, and the situation is so hard that a person cannot move away from his own problems, let alone worry about problems of someone else. Again, the truth becomes the main criterion according to which we must live”.

For these hard 5,000 days Judge Meron concluded, on 16 November 2012, in the Hague, with these words: “The Appeal Chamber overturns the finding of the Trial Chamber that Joint Criminal Enterprise existed to permanently remove, under force and threat of force, the Serbian civilian population from Krajina”.

After the defence from aggression, the creation of the state and the defence from accusations, the time has now come to place efforts for success of today’s Croatia into the first plan .

Success of Croatia and Europe is now in first place

The time of responsibility, challenges and opportunities is now facing Croatia and Europe.

Visions of founding people had inspired the creation of Europe and Croatia, and the efforts, the suffering and the faith of the whole nation also inspired the defence of Croatia. We would not be living in today’s Croatia without their ideals and their efforts.

Croatia is entering the European Union at a time of harsh economic crisis. Regretfully, even among today’s leaders of Europe and Croatia there is no vision. There is a great number of politicians, bureaucrats, projects and meetings, staggering between a crisis to crisis. In order to depart from crisis we need to abandon the cult of money and return to believing and the ideals, which are the only ways that will lead us away from the existing crisis and open up the paths to employment (work), birth, family, peace and success in Croatia and Europe.

Joint Movement of Good

Our action is an invitation for the awakening of the willingness for the good and sharing the good, for the stimulation of knowledge, for connecting people, performing and transcending the good. Europe, Croatia, all countries and all people of Europe, should, want and can create a better world.

With its visions and concrete propositions Joint Movement of Good calls for Croatia to enter the European Union with pride, and to enrich it with its own ideals, experiences and propositions.

Within European Union, Croatia should advocate a sustainable prosperous economy and realisation of the Human Right to work.

On this point of our Vision we propose the establishment of a committee for full employment and sustainable development. The country that proposes a sustainable development – democratic + economic + ecological + human rights), to be freed from debt within European Union countries, which will mean a long-lasting benefit for all.

I propose to Croatia to immediately put in motion the education of our successful students at the best of the world’s universities. We propose that elected representatives with excessive remuneration jointly form this initiative.

Croatia and Europe must strive towards a healthy family life and an educated population that will pursue happiness, faith in God, goodness and the well being of all people.

That is why we propose a committee for demographic Health (birth, family, elderly, arrangement of living).

We advocate for Croatia to launch Dinners of Good at which, once a year, the invited prominent people would directly get to familiarise themselves with the life of the unemployed, the elderly, the poor and the ill in their own homes. Also, to invite foreigners of European dinner once a year.

Advocating for Nora is an example of people’s wish and readiness to do Good. (Nora Situm was a five year old who suffered from acute lymphoblastic leukemia and died in Philadelphia children’s hospital at the end of March 2013, soon after she arrived there for experimental treatment, enormous funds for her medical treatment in the USA was raised within days among people of Croatia.)

Croatia and European Union seek humane legal system in which there is no place for exploitation or discrimination of any kind.

Let’s express our respect for the past and our responsibility towards the future by naming our town and city Squares in honour of victims. Let’s return the good people from museums to be among the people by marking with a unique sign each house where the righteous among nations had lived and worked. Let’s show to ourselves and to everybody that a “Righteous war” was fought in Croatia.

Croatia, within European Union, should actively work on connecting European young people towards creating the future and preserving cultural traditions of all countries, members of the European Union.

We propose the establishment European forces of good (humanitarian, educational, work actions …). Every country to propose one book, which would enter into a European library, be translated into all the languages of European Union member states. Every ten years we identify and mark a place in the cities where good has been done, and which should be remembered. Paths of Good will emerge from this.

Croatia and European Union, and their institutions and organisations should follow the processes and paths of democracy and human rights.

As a sign of respect towards smaller nations and countries let’s establish a Forum of smaller countries of Central Europe, let’s adopt the Romani as a nation of Europe (not only minorities within countries), let’s place the Jewish flag at half-mast in front of the European Union Parliament building as a sign of responsibility for the destiny of small nations. (The Holocaust had turned the Jews into minorities).

Croatia, within the European Union, must advocate for every person to participate in the creation of the future.

We propose a European Conference about Good, and let’s sustain a Conference on Croatian future (Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, minorities, émigrés and invited internationally).

Let’s introduce an annual award for good deeds in Europe and essays among the young – “My Europe”.

The success of Croatia and Europe

The candidates of the Joint Movement of Good are of a ripe age and experienced in the creation of Croatia, worldly activities and unyielding preservation of ideals.

New generations of yesteryear and of the future can only succeed if they have ideals and if they apply themselves towards their realisation into the reality.

These are such choices and responsibilities – of the candidates and of those who vote.

Related Posts: (Link 1)  (Link 2) ( Link 3) (Link 4

Croatia: Huffing and Puffing at Huffington Post


Huffington Post has 27 March conspicuously decided to publish on its website John Feffer’s, a George Soros “Open Society Fellow”, interview with Danijel Srb, president of Croatian Party of Rights, which Feffer equally conspicuously published only 21 March even though the interview was held mid-October 2012!

While in principle the practice of journalists holding onto their material until the “right” time comes for publishing it, the fact that EU Parliament representatives’ election campaign is currently at full swing renders it most conspicuous that Feffer (and Huffington Post) decided to publish an interview which talks about Croatian World War II Ustashe movement (Nazi collaborators) and fails abysmally at noting that there were potent and equally widespread anti- Fascist/anti-Nazi movements in World War II Croatia as well. Furthermore, it surely could not be by accident that John Feffer (and Huffington Post) decided to publish a lengthy interview with the president of a minor Croatian political party (Party of Rights) who has been huffing and puffing about what things are “wrong” in Croatia (and European Union for that matter) and yet has done little, if anything (apart from complaining), to actually solve them. It has failed monumentally in gathering any significant following among the people and that, in itself, could well confirm a wide discord between the Party’s values and program and the nation.

Whether this interview is designed to portray an image of Croatia as a country that does not trust the European Union, or to portray the European Union as a destructive conglomerate, which sucks into oblivion the sovereignty and identity of individual nations that make it up, is a matter for individual preferences, but both impressions are possible.

It is of note that Huffington Post omitted to let its readers know that Danijel Srb – president of the anti-EU Croatian political party – had the day before they published Fiffer’s interview presented himself and his Party’s colleagues as candidates for EU Parliament in the coming elections.

When he presented his Party’s candidates for the EU Parliament Srb said “although they are Eurosceptic, they have put themselves forward as candidates because without them the identity and the sovereignty of Croatia within Europe will be endangered.”  He claimed that the candidates of the two largest parties in Croatia will in EU Parliament be raising their hands to directives and that these will have an advantage over the interests of Croatia.

One cannot avoid the feeling that Danijel Srb and his Croatian Party of Rights know little about the “job descriptions” of EU Parliament representatives, while at the same time shrugging off as unimportant the fact that not a single country member of the EU has lost its identity or its sovereignty throughout the decades of the Union’s existence.

It is of course, a matter of skill to be able to represent and fight for the interests of ones own country in such a wide Union of countries, and Srb’s party do not seem to possess such a skill.

Does Danijel Srb truly believe that “thieves of sovereignty and national identity” fill the EU Parliament and he will come among them to stop them from thieving the Croatian ones!? That is surely the wrong attitude to harbour and certainly the one that brings the least of wanted results.  The right attitude to have would, to my view, be: here we are in the EU, let’s all join forces and make this world better for all the people in it.

Given that we are here on the subject of Croatian parties of Rights, the conservative lean of political orientation linked to right wing ideology, we need to know that there are more than one: Croatian Party of Rights, Croatian Pure Party of Rights, Croatian Autochthon Party of Rights, Croatian Party of Rights Dr. Ante Starcevic, and Croatian Party of Rights 1861.

Among them all, the EU Parliament candidate from the Croatian Pure Party of Rights, dr. Tomislav Sunic (non-party candidate) stand out far above the rest. Sunic, an academic, world acclaimed author of several books, a former diplomat, part of the European New Right movement, is in no way superficial or irrational (as Srb seems to be) when it comes to national identity and the facets of its sustenance within the intricate political and economic weave of the modern world.

Being a EU Parliament candidate myself, I’d rub shoulders with Sunic in EU Parliament much rather than with Danijel Srb. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)

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