Croatia: Riding Through Another Red Storm

Memorial plaque to 11 HOS defenders killed in Jasenovac in 1991

Memorial plaque to 11 HOS
defenders killed in Jasenovac in 1991


It’s normal for Croatian public news agency HINA to report on news from Serbia and from everywhere, but as far as I’m concerned it’s not normal for the same agency to report or purport to report as news to the Croatian public the opinion emanating with hatred and lies and other depravities against Croatia coming out of anyone’s mouth let alone Serbian foreign minister Ivica Dacic’s. Serbian mainstream media does plenty of that on its own and its infuriating seeing Croatian public news agency pick up on the lies, repeat them – give them a kind of a credibility simply because they come in the form of news from a news agency. I don’t think any self-respecting Croat would want to have his/her face shoved into malicious garbage blowing from Serbia on New Year’s Eve, or at any time for that matter, and yet that is what’s happened. So, why do HINA and, from it, the mainstream media in Croatia repeat, without any disclaimer or qualification whatsoever, something defamatory or vilifying about Croatian people/nation if they did not actually want to inflict pain upon Croats themselves? Why do they not provide at the same time, as a matter of regular practice, some kind of analysis or fact-based opinion regarding what Dacic had said in order to set facts right and pull Dacic down low, lower to invisibility?

Now, as it describes itself on its website as “the Croatian news agency HINA is public media outlet and the only national news agency in Croatia. Its subscribers are leading electronic and print media in Croatia, including the national broadcaster HRT and leading news portals, daily and weekly newspapers. Apart from Croatian media, HINA’s news articles are also used by many news agencies with which HINA cooperates, as well as by many news portals in the region.”

It’s telling and worrying that this HINA agency (which the Croatian diaspora helped significantly get on its feet both financially as well as providing lines of news distribution around the world during the Croatian Homeland War of early 1990’s when it competed for news reporting with the already established media rival was “TANJUG” [Yugoslav News Agency] belonging to/controlled by the Serb aggressor) has not learned not to pass on as news opinions and vilification uttered by leaders of other countries, in this case Serbia. It has not learned that if biased mainstream or other media want dirt and lies to try and pass on as truths they can go find them themselves, away from HINA.


High time for HINA lustration.


It’s New Year’s Day; I hadn’t even slept properly from the buzz of ushering in 2017 (but that can wait) and, perusing news from Croatia on the Internet I was instantly in a face-off of sorts with Croatian mainstream media and HINA. I don’t want to know what Serbia’s foreign minister had to say about Croatia – he is an insufferable notorious liar when it comes to Croatia, a supporter and participant within the political machine that drove the bloody Serb aggression against Croatia in the 1990’s.


Croatian mainstream media picked up on HINA’s passing on of what Dacic said during his end of year press conference in Serbia: “It’s a lie to say that Croatia is not rehabilitating fascism, they have rehabilitated Alojzije Stepinac and are setting free criminals from 1990,” HINA quoted Dacic, who reportedly also said that the WWII Independent State of Croatia (NDH) was the forerunner of today’s Croatia and the idea of an independent state and also commented greeting “For Home Ready” (Za Dom Spremni). Saying that the “For Home Ready” greeting was “devised for no other reason except for the needs of the Ustashe fascist Nazi regime that was Hitler’s marionette.”

What utter and malicious garbage!

It’s a shame the Croatian mainstream media didn’t shout that or similar response to Dacic.


All that Dacic had said in that press conference is political spin and hatred that neither knows nor sees truths nor facts, because if he did see truth and facts he would be disarmed, ending up with no case against Croatia to show. Croatia had every right rehabilitating Archbishop Alojzije Stepinac whom communists convicted, without proof or just trial, after WWII, as Nazi-collaborator. After all Stepinac is now among the Blessed in the Catholic Church, pending canonisation. As to his indecent statement that WWII Independent State of Croatia was the forerunner of today’s Croatia that too is a malicious lie. The truth is that the real forerunner of today’s independent Croatia was the oppressive communist Yugoslavia with Serbia wheeling and dealing most of the oppression. Plights and battles for independence had, indeed, persisted in Croatia at every opportunity, with absolute right to self-determination, throughout many centuries and the only one that is lasting is the current one; the one won in 1990’s through defending Croatia from Serb aggression. So no WWII state as forerunner there.


As to “For Home Ready” greeting/salutation, a court in Knin, Croatia, (2012) found that the salutation “Za Dom Spremni” (For Home – Ready) has been known throughout the whole of the Croatian history, from the times of Nikola Subic Zrinski (1556 – 1566), and as such it does not signify any so called “Ustashe attribute” with which it is most likely or most often burdened.


But, sadly, an unchallenged court ruling in Croatia doesn’t mean as much as it means in developed democracies, where one needs not agree with it but one cannot openly work against it. Croatia has seen some very nasty orgies of hatred coming out of the communist loving lot since the beginning of November 2016, when in Jasenovac (nearby the WWII memorial site for the WWII Holocaust victims) a memorial plaque with “For Home Ready” salutation written on it, was raised to honour eleven Croatian defenders who lost their lives there in 1991, defending Croatia from the orgy of Serb terror and hatred against Croats and Croatia. The eleven killed defenders belonged to a Croatian Party of Rights associated HOS defence formation that had on its insignia the “For Home Ready” salutation and insignia was and is a legal.

Some Croatian Serbs with communist past, other Croatian communists and so-called antifascists, Serbs from Serbia and some of their leadership, even that sorry excuse for a justice fighter, Efraim Zuroff, (of Jerusalem based Simon Wiesenthal Centre) – the staunch opponent of justice for victims of communist crimes who uses his “Nazi hunter” cloak as some kind of licensing ammunition in making the “hunt” for communist crimes efforts rocky and impossible and as exhausting as possible – gave a hand in trying to convince some public that the Jasenovac memorial plaque to the killed Croatian defenders was evidence of revival of fascism in Croatia. What a twisted, repulsive mind. According to the false line he tows together with Croatia’s and Serbia’s flaming communist maniacs, the “For Home Ready” salutation on the memorial plaque offended the victims honoured in the nearby Holocaust memorial.


The fact of humanity we all must adhere to is that no victims ever chose where they will perish but all victims deserve a marking and memorial at the place where they did perish.


HOS Croatian formation insignia

HOS Croatian formation insignia

These protesters against the plaque must not win, if anything their loud and abominable protest should move the Croatian government not to start some kind of a committee or commission to decide whether the plaques with “For Home Ready” should stay there or not, as it proposes via statement made by Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic, but use the opportunity to form a commission that will once and for all investigate the truth about the WWII Jasenovac camp. The facts are that Yugoslav communists kept the camp open until well into 1948 and a number of credible historians submit that multitudes of Croats were murdered there after WWII as part of Tito’s communist purges. That commission should also go about retrieving the historical records about WWII and post-WWII events in Croatia still kept in Belgrade, Serbia, regardless of the fact that they are an inheritance belonging to Croatia after the split up of Yugoslavia.

Those who protest against the memorial plaque to the eleven Croatian defenders who perished amidst the Serb orgy of terror and hatred against Croatia and Croatian people in 1991 in Jasenovac cannot win. They cannot win even if they, in their apparent misguided, miserable existence, think they may have a case under the Constitution of the Republic of Croatia. Well that Constitution would not have survived nor lived until today were it not for such brave defenders and Croatian veterans who laid their lives on the line to ensure independent Croatia lives. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)

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