Shameful revisionists like myself have tried to portray the Ustashe
"Independent State Of Croatia" as simply another nazi occupied Quisling
regime, like Holland or Norway. This is an odious fabrication, one of
THE many I now deeply regret circulating.
[in WWII] the indeginous fascist regime set about a policy
of "racial purification" that went beyond even Nazi practices.
The above quote is from:
15th Edition (1991)
Macropaedia, Vol. 29, page 1111
In truth, the Independent State Of Croatia was a full-fledged Axis
co-belligerent. It declared war on the United States, Britain and the
Soviet Union on the 14th December 1941- and since a peace treaty was
never signed, today's neo-fascist led Croatia, as the successor state, is
technically still at war with those nations.
First, though, my confessional thoughts on the resurgence of today's
Ustashe. A year ago, Tudjman's Croatia invaded the UN protected area of
Krajina with overwhelming military force.
Planned by the US military,
which also trained and equipped the invading Croat armies, the result was
the near total ethnic cleaning of hundreds of thousands of Serbs from
homelands they had occupied for over half a millennium. And in
circumstances of the utmost inhumanity and destructive savagery. This
was the worst single witnessed and documented act of "ethnic cleansing".
From the beginning, Serbian villages, towns and homesteads were
systematically torched and laid waste, a cleansing fury whose aim was to
eliminate every vestige of Serb occupation; it included the systematic
ploughing up of cemeteries, destruction of churches and even the
levelling of the stone walls which had divided their land-holdings for
centuries. Today, one year after the event, the torture, harassment and
slaughter of those too old, infirm or just too stubborn to leave
continues, and with the full knowledge of the US and the wider
The gross nature and colossal extent of the war crimes and crimes against
humanity which occurred in the Krajina
appear not to have caused to
slightest ripple at the Hague. To date neither
Tudjman or his US
patrons, especially Galbraith and the senior US military who nurtured,
planned, trained, equipped and help execute this military obscenity by
their Croatian proxies have been indicted.
Such open support for a neo fascist regime seems inexplicable to those
who grew up believing in the US as the land of the free and home of the
brave. Yet here it is inflicting a ghastly criminal fate upon Serbian
men women and children. The Serbs, remember, a people who never wished
them anything but goodwill, and who fought and died alongside them in two
world wars. The same Serb civilians whose fathers, mothers, uncles and
grand-parents who often chose unasked to lay down their lives to help
shot-down US airmen
survive the efforts of
wartime SS Croats and
to capture and hand them over to the tender mercies of the German nazi
Here is what one US President said about the bravery and fidelity of the
wartime Serbs. It is the citation that accompanied the American award of
the Legion Of Merit to Mihajlovic:
"General Dragoljub Mihajlovic distinguished himself in an outstanding
manner as Commander-in-Chief of the Yugoslavian Armed Forces and later as
Minister Of War by organising and leading important resistance forces
against the enemy which occupied Yugoslavia from December 1941 to
December 1944. Through the undaunted efforts of his troops, many United
States airmen were rescued and returned safely to friendly control.
General Mihajlovic and his forces, although lacking adequate supplies,
and fighting under extreme hardships, contributed materially to the
Allied cause and were materially instrumental in obtaining a final Allied
Signed: Harry S. Truman March 29, 1948
The US cannot disclaim responsibility for what happened once they had
unleashed the Croats against the relatively undefended
Krajina. Even a
cursory understanding of recent Balkan history will confirm that Tudjman
is the direct ideological successor of
Pavelic's genocidal wartime
Ustashe nazis. Now, as then, the aim is to create a 100% pure Catholic
Croatian state. Today, however, unlike Pavelic, the megalomaniacal
Tudjman doesn't need the services of death camps like
Jasenovac. He has
the full political, military and economic might of the US, the world's
number one superpower, ever eager to help achieve his ends.
To remind ourselves of what Ustashe revisionists, including
Franjo Tudjman, and US and German political
apologists would wish us to forget
about the nature of Croatian fascism...
At the end of the war,
took control of Yugoslavia.
While there were some trials of war criminals, unlike Germany, Austria
and the rest of nazi Europe, a thorough process of denazification never
took place in Croatia. Communist ideology, and notions of Brotherhood and
Unity, condemned any mention of the Ustashe genocide of the Serbs as a
form of nationalist deviation.
Revisionists try to portray the Ustashe "Independent State Of
simply another nazi occupied Quisling regime like Holland or Norway. In
fact, the Pavelic Independent State Of Croatia declared war on the United
States, Britain and the Soviet Union on the 14th December 1941 and was
thus a fully-fledged Axis co-belligerent.
To illustrate the point: World War 2 Nazi Croatia had more men under arms
proportionally than any other Axis state. They were made up of:
- 160,000 regulars (Domobrani)
- 75,000 Fascist Militia (Ustashe)
- 15,000 police auxiliaries (Oruznici & Redarstvo)
In addition to its own units, Croatia provided more volunteers for the
German Army than anyone else in Axis Europe. There were five full
strength divisions, of which three were Wehrmacht (369th, 373rd, 392nd)
and two Waffen SS (13th & 23rd).
There was also a "Croat Legion" of 7,000 volunteers
serving under Germans
on the Russian Front, and an anti-aircraft unit of 500 men in Austria.
the Bosnian Muslim SS units
and divisions (Handchar, Kama, etc.),
these Croatian formations were officered by Germans. On their sleeves
they had the checkerboard symbol, the same wartime nazi symbol is
displayed on the Croatian flag today.
was able to raise substantial forces during World War II in order
to fight for the Axis powers. These forces were a mixture of regular
and paramilitary units, and by the end of 1941
there was a total of 114,000 soldiers under arms, with a further
38,000 soldiers in territorial units.
The above quote is from:
Uniforms of World War II,
By Peter Darman
Chartwell Books Inc., Edison, NJ, 1998
To compare the relatively small number of Serbian Quislings set up by the
nazis to help administer the
occupied, virtually dismembered Serbia, with
the full blown Ustashe Independent State Of Croatia, is ludicrous. It's
like saying that Quisling dominated Norway was as genocidal as nazi
dominated Germany. While the Quislings of nazi Europe did their master's
bidding, the bulk of the populations concerned were involved in active or
passive resistance. That or they simply looked the other way. In
Serbia's case, they mostly
took to the hills in time
It should also be said that of all the nazi states, Germany included,
Croatia was most in need of thorough denazification. In Germany, the
racist ideology of the nazis was sustained by the party alone. In
Pavelic's Croatia it was maintained by the twin pillars of Church and
State. Race and religion combined to
terrifying effect. A convergence
of a racist nationalism which aimed at a 100% ethnically pure state, and
a fascist Croatian church with a parallel policy of a 100% pure Catholic
It puts into context the deep involvement of the Croatian clergy,
especially Franciscans, from the lowest to the highest, in the
unspeakable crimes which immediately followed the founding of the state.
These clerical fascists led roving bands which bestially slaughtered
community after community of Orthodox Serbs. Many acted as butchers in
death camps like Jasenovac.
Priests, bishops, even the highest members
of the Catholic Hierarchy were appointed to positions of authority at
every level of the Ustashe state.
Catholics like myself can never sufficiently atone for what was done in
the name of our church in wartime Croatia. It provides a nightmarish
glimpse into the near contemporary heart of catholic darkness.
This is taken from "Katolicki Tjednik" (Catholic Weekly), Christmas
1941. The complete text in Croatian is found in "Magnum Crimen" by
Victor Novak. It consists of 26 verses of praise to Pavelic. The poet
was one of the highest officers of the Croatian Catholic church:
Ode to Pavelic
(Archbishop Sharitch of Bosnia)
Embracing thee was precious to the poet
as embracing our beloved Homeland.
For God himself was at thy side, thou good and strong one,
so that thou mightest perform thy deeds for the Homeland...
And against Jews, who had all the money,
who wanted our souls,
who built a prison round our name,
the miserable traitors...
Dr Ante Pavelic! the dear name!
Croatia has therein a treasure from Heaven.
May the King of Heaven accompany thee, our Golden Leader!
The combined ideology of a fascist Croatian church and state spelled doom
for near three million Orthodox Serbs, their religion and clergy. Only
their extermination and/or conversion would satisfy a genocidal obsession
to create a 100% ethnically pure Catholic Croatia.
In the words of Dr Milovan Zanitch, Minister Of Justice, who declared on
June 2nd 1941:
"This State, our country, is only for the Croats, and not for anyone
else. There are no ways and means which we Croats will not use to make
our country truly ours, and to clean it of all Orthodox serbs. All those
who came into our country 300 years ago must disappear. We do not hide
this our intention. It is the policy of our State, and during its
promotion we shall do
nothing else but follow the principles of the Ustashi."
The policy being to physically slaughter a million, convert another
million and pack the rest off to the tender mercies of the Germans in
nazi occupied Serbia, or slave labour camps. For State and Church this
policy served a dual purpose - to destroy once and for all the presence
of the abominable Serb and his equally abominable Orthodox religion in
All the immensely influential Catholic press came out in favour of
Pavelic: Here's a sample (Vjesnik Pocasne Straze Srca Isusova, issues
numbers 5 and 6, 1941)
"In the early spring the Croatian people experienced their resurrection
at the time of Christ's resurrection. The great son of the Croatian
people (Pavelic) returned and gave them their liberty and ancient rights.
And this is also the work of God; the Lord did it all and that is why it
is strange to our eyes."
And again - (in Nedjelja, the voice of the influential Crusader movement,
June 6th, 1941) "Christ and the Ustashe and Christ and the Croatians
march together through history.."
And later, as the genocide got under way, in the village of Tramosnica,
Catholic priest Ante Klaric harangued his congregation thus:
"You are old women and you should put on skirts, for you have not yet
killed a single Serb. We have no weapons and no knives and we should
forge them out of old scythes and sickles, so that you can cut the
throats of Serbs whenever you see them."
Dr Hermann Neubacher, Hitler's Minister Plenipotentiary For The Balkans
(and surely no friend of the Serbs) writes in his book, "Special
Assignment In The Southeast" 1940-45, pg 18.).
"... a Croatian crusade of destruction directed against the Orthodox
Serbs erupted, a crusade that belongs among the most brutal mass murder
undertakings in the entire history of the world.... (later pg. 31)... The
prescription for the Orthodox Serbs issued by the leader and Fuhrer of
Croatia, Ante Pavelic, was reminiscent of the religious wars of the
bloodiest memory: One third must be converted to Catholicism, another
third must be expelled, and the final third must die. The last part of
the program has been carried out. When the leaders of the Ustashe
movement claim that they have slit the throats of a million Serb Serbs,
including infants, women and old people, that is, in my opinion, a
boastful exaggeration. On the basis of
the reports that were submitted to me, I estimate the number of the
defenceless murder victims to be three quarters of a million."
And the German Intelligence chief for the Southeast, Dr Wilhelm Hoettl
(alias Walter Hagen), who writes in his book, "The Secret Front",
"A truly murderous hatred was aimed at the Serbs and the Jews who had
just been officially proclaimed outlawed. Already in the Summer of 1941
the horrendous atrocities have assumed unheard of proportions... Since
following an old tradition, being Catholic was equivalent to confessing
to the Catholic faith, and being Serbian followed the profession of
Orthodoxy, they now began to convert the Orthodox to Roman Catholicism
under duress. These forced conversions were actually a method of
Mile Budak - announcer of the infamous "Kill a million Serbs, convert a
million, etc..." is quoted in "The Silence Of Pope Pius XII" (by Carlo
Falconi, (Bernard Wall, London, 1970).
"The Serbs, Budak observed: "are not Serbs, but people brought here from
the East by the Turks... as the plunderers and refuse of the Balkans...
God is one, and the people that HE governs is also one: and this is the
Croatian people... It would be as well for them to know our motto:
"EITHER SUBMIT OR GET OUT" (author's emphasis)
Budak's statements are echoed today by Tudjman who describes Muslims and
Serbs as Eastern people in need of "Europeanisation". What is genuinely
offensive is that Tudjman's government has named a public place after
this Budek, a genocidal criminal.
I should make clear that some senior Croatian clerics were appalled by
what was being done in the name of the Catholic church by Pavelic and his
racist butchers, lay and clergy. In November 1941, Bishop Misic wrote to
Archbishop Stepinac, the highest church dignitary in the Croatian
Hierarchy. Bishop Misic writes...
"... a reign of terror has come to pass... men are captured like animals.
They are slaughtered, murdered; living men are thrown off cliffs (as in
Medjugorje). The under prefect of Mostar,
Bajic, a Muslim has said - he should keep silent and not utter such
things - that at Ljubinje in a single day 700 schismatics were thrown to
their graves. From Mostar and Capljina a train took six carloads of
mothers, young girls, and children ten years old to the station... they
were led up the mountains and mothers together with their children were
thrown alive off the
(Stella Alexander, "The Triple Myth - A Life Of Archbishop
Stepinac", East European Monographs, Boulder No. CCXXV1 (NY 1987, p. 28).
These statements were made by people who were no friends of the Serbs.
They were also witness to the events they describe.
The evidence from
every authoritative quarter is simply overwhelming.
What is described
above happened and is documented, and it's only the tip of the iceberg.
The reality is that a ghastly combination of racist belief and clerical
fascism combined to drench the land of wartime Croatia in the blood of
the innocent. I'll spare readers the gruesome details, but Serbian
children were a particular target of a genocidal fury which is simply
The favoured tools of mass executions were
By comparison, the German nazis were mercifully surgical - the
short shift with bullet and rope. The scale and depravity of the mass
slaughter was so bad that often the Germans and Italians had to intervene
- apart from humanitarian considerations, the demonic actions of the
Ustashe were swelling the ranks of
the Chetniks and Partisans with
Yugoslavs of every ethnicity, and religion, especially the Serbs.
the mainly Serb partisans under the command of Tito made little impression on
the German occupiers. But by May 1944 Tito's so-called "Liberation Army"
had grown to 500,000
[ half a million! ] men, supplied from the pre-war Yugoslav Army and Allied
air drops. By the beginning of January 1945 Tito had cleared Yugoslavia
of most Axis troops and collaborators...
The above quote is from:
Uniforms of World War II,
By Peter Darman
Chartwell Books Inc., Edison, NJ, 1998
After the war, the Germans, Austrians and others apologised to their
victims for what their Nazis did in the name of their states. Sadly the
Croatian state has not yet apologised. In fact, it has used might and
main to deny the extent and the nature of what was done by the Ustashe in
the name of Croatia. One aspect of this denial is the persistent
accusation that the
Serbs were wartime genocidal nazis and the Croats their victims. This
fantastic feat of role reversal continues today, with the Croatian state
and many of it citizens claiming they were the true allies of the west,
and the Serbian people, collective Nazi Allies and collaborators.
It's a monstrous lie, one which flies in the face of reason and the ocean
of documented history of which those quoted here constitute but a
droplet. However, the more it is made, the closer it focuses attention
on Ustashe Croatia: a murderous anti-western regime which declared and
waged war on the Allies, and whose volunteer armies swelled the ranks of
the SS and the
Wehrmacht. Those who deny its uniquely horrible character insult the
memory of the countless victims it sacrificed on the altar of racist
madness, and the sacrifice of the honourable and decent Croatians who
died opposing it.
More dangerously, denial has paved the way for its resurgence. Today,
the nationalistic ethos of Tudjman's government, its rhetoric,
symbols of state have an all too familiar resonance.
Its triumphalism, public honouring of
Ustashe war criminals and near
dictatorial control of the media inclines more to fascism than democracy.
Domestic discrimination and intimidation against the Serbs, their
religion and culture has an even more sinister wartime resonance.
But it's the nature and result of their brutal military actions in both
Western Slavonia and the Krajina that
should worry us most. It
demonstrates beyond doubt that the present day Croatian state shares the
primary objective of the wartime Ustashe - a racist obsession to create a
100% ethnically pure Catholic Croatia.
The corrosive effect of such ideologies on our common humanity is best
illustrated by an encounter between two Croatians at
gruesome WW2 Ustashe extermination camp. Vladko Macek, leader of the
Croatian Peasant Party, was arrested and sent there six months after the
NDH (Independent State Of Croatia) was founded. In his memoirs "In My
Struggle For Freedom", (University Park, Penn. 1957) he describes it thus
on p. 234 ...
"The camp had previously been a brick-yard and was situated on the
embankment of the Sava River. In the middle of the camp stood a two
storey house, originally erected for the offices of the enterprise... The
screams and wails of despair and extreme suffering, the tortured outcries
of the victims, broken by intermittent shooting, accompanied all my
waking hours and followed me into sleep at night.
Macek noticed that one of the guards assigned to watch him round the
clock crossed himself each night before going to sleep. Macek pointed out
(p. 245) "... the monstrosity of his actions. I asked is he was not
afraid of the punishment of God. "Don't talk to me about that," he said,
"for I am perfectly aware what is in store for me. For my past present
and future deeds I shall burn in hell, but at least I shall burn for
Posted on soc.culture.yugoslavia
August 22, 1996