There is a repugnant movement by a group of “cultural workers”, so-called “the Culturals 2016”, that’s placing justice for all victims at further peril, gaining some ground in Croatia around this time of commemorating the anniversaries of the WWII murders and Holocaust at Jasenovac (late-April) and of the mass murders and exterminations that occurred at Bleiburg and Way of the Cross immediately and months after WWII (mid-May). The Culturals 2016 or this group of a hundred or so people such as artists, writers, actors…call themselves “the soul of Croatian culture” and, as such, they want Croatia’s Minister for culture, Zlatko Hasanbegovic, out!
It’s beyond my decency and common sense to accept the fact that a couple of hundred artists, actors or writers are the soul of the culture of any nation, let alone Croatia. The soul of the culture is all the people of a nation, not a couple of hundred individuals with personal artistic expressions, mostly insignificant in the overall culture corpus of a nation. So, really, the Culturals 2016 represent themselves and appear as an extended arm of still active former communists of Yugoslavia in whose interest it is to hide the truth of communist crimes.
The political, not cultural, initiative “the Culturals 2016” driveled on last week at a gathering in Zagreb they called “the contextualisation of historical revisionism” and attempted to voice a number of implications of what they call historical revisionism in the form of persistent insistence by the “governing elite” to equalize and justify claims of an existence of two totalitarianisms, the fascist and the communist, have, and that the Ustashi regime (WWII regime that fought for the independence of Croatia) can easily be hiding in this rhetoric could have serious consequences upon the general social climate.
The fact that communism was and is regarded as a totalitarian regime worldwide (apart from within the countries still ruled under communism) has no meaning nor validity for these “Culturals 2016”. But, that is not surprising, for their culture is and always was that of the communist ilk.
Djurdja Knezevic, an unimpressive writer and historian, often pushing the feminist hard-line, a member of “the Culturals 2016” said at the gathering that the aim of the group was to “bring down Croatia’s minister for the culture, Zlatko Hasanbegovic…”.
Minister of Culture, Croatia
Photo: Screenshot HRT news 9 April 2016
The Culturals 2016 hold the attitude that the reinterpretation of events in the recent history of the region (former Yugoslavia) and their revision, especially through equalsation of the two regimes, e.g. “I am anti-fascist and anti-communist”, seem to be building a new national form that threatens the annulment of all existing ideological divisions and taking the Croatian society into an ideological monolith.
Since justice for all victims defines such a future ideological monolith – it is most welcome and essential!
There is no reinterpretation of the events there is only the insistence on justice for all victims, on prosecuting and condemning communist crimes and showing up communism for what it truly was – murderous regime that murdered innocent people because of their political allegiances – just like the insistence of prosecution and condemnation of the Holocaust crimes had done for Nazi/Fascist WWII crimes.
When coupled with the recent announcement by representatives of the Jewish Councils and Serbian National Council in Croatia that they will not attend the commemoration of the victims of the Holocaust at Jasenovac, and their anti-prosecution-of communist-crimes pal from Israel’s office of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, Efraim Zuroff, who keep banging on with lies about a supposed emergence of Ustashi (read pro-Nazi) regime in Croatia in order to stifle efforts for justice of victims of communist crimes, we see clearly that justice for the victims is not on the minds of these “do-gooders” of the communist ilk. They are bringing politics into what should be an event of regret, sorrow, and piety for victims of crimes regardless of who had committed the crimes.
Croatia’s minister for culture, Zlatko Hasanbegovic, against whom the malicious and baseless accusations of “historical revisionism, relativisation of the Ustashi regime and negation of the Holocaust” are being made delivered replies or comments at a launch of a book purporting to contain the truth of WWII Jasenovac camp as follows: “We need to approach this subject seriously and without political provocation… we need to address not just this topic but many other contentious topics, a kind of historiographical adjudication without any illusion that any one of us has the monopoly on the final truth.”
First Deputy Prime Minister of Croatia
Tomislav Karamako’s Facebook status
Photo: Screenshot HRT News 9 April 2016
The First Deputy Prime Minister of Croatia Tomislav Karamarko said that “the victims of totalitarian regimes do not deserve boycott,” and called for unity across Croatia. On his Facebook page he wrote: “I call upon all those who have announced their boycott of the Jasenovac commemoration to reconsider their decision and that the respect towards the victims and a repeated condemnation of the totalitarian regime become more important to them than cheap daily politicisation whose effects, at any rate, don’t last more than two or three days…”. A most impressive statement that pours confidence in the pursuit of that final truth Croatia must underline and confront when it comes to its WWII and post-WWII periods of history.
While the communists of Yugoslavia with their allies in the West had usurped and held on to the monopoly of what they called “the truth” of WWII and post-WWII Croatia (Yugoslavia) the final truth mentioned by Croatia’s minister Hasanbegovic accepts no master but the real truth – the one we have yet to stand before. Participating Communists in communist crimes and their descendants have a great deal to lose, particularly if serious research (prohibited under communist Yugoslavia regime) into claims that the communist Partisans murdered more people at Jasenovac than what the pro-Nazi Ustashi did, confirms these claims. Hence, one can understand the vicious energy of hate, falsehoods, jitters and panic emanating from this pro-communist camp in Croatia – but one cannot, must not, accept it nor let it win. The final truth takes no sides only its own! Bless you – Minister Hasanbegovic! Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)
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