Prikaz rezultata str. 1/2

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  1. #1

    Yugoslavia was created against the will of the Croatian People

    By Dr. George W. Cesarich


    The happenings of two fatal months, November and December, 1918, which led to the formation of a new state, the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (Yugoslavia), have often been described by able writers and historians. 1 However, there are remarkable aspects of those events which are conspicuously absent from their stories but are essential for a full understanding of historical developments of that perplexing time. Only the inclusion of some missing pieces into this historical jigsaw puzzle of 1918 can give us a complete and true picture of those unfortunate days when by the combined methods of political deception and ruthless force, the Croatian nation was put, against her will, into a prison of nations presently called Yugoslavia. 2

    For instance, the historians of that period hardly mention a very significant political meeting held on November 25, 1918, in the large hall of Streljana in the capital of Croatia, Zagreb. It was a Congress of the Croatian Popular Peasant Party, and the principal speaker of the day was the Party President, Stjepan Radic. 3 The Congress was attended by 2832 Party delegates from all over Croatia. In his speech, Stjepan Radic reported to the delegates about the decision of the National Council 4 of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs of November 24, 1918, by which this body had declared itself for a union of Croatia with Serbia and Montenegro, asked for the creation of a common state of the Slovenes, Croats, and Serbs, and selected a committee of 28 persons to effect the union according to given instructions. 5 After Radic's speech, in which he assailed this decision of the National Council as arbitrary and unconstitutional, the Congress of the Croatian Peasant Party unanimously adopted a resolution declaring that the Party is decisively against the creation of a joint state of the Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes. In the resolution, the assembled delegates energetically claimed the right of self-determination for Croatia, and also expressed the desire of the Croatian people to form a separate "Neutral and Peasant Republic of Croatia." Following this political meeting, great manifestations took place in Zagreb in favor of an independent Croatian Republic. 6 It is indisputable that Radic's Croatian Peasant Party represented, at that moment, the overwhelming majority of the Croatian people, and, consequently, its unanimously passed resolution in favor of a Republic of Croatia had the significance of a popular plebiscite by which the people unequivocally declared their opposition to a union with Serbia. 7 Indeed, in those turbulent and confusing days of 1918, it was the utmost the unarmed Croats could do in order to express their genuine political will. However, a group of skillful Serbian politicians and some highly idealistic pro-Yugoslav Croatian dreamers succeeded in circumventing the ardent desire of the Croatian people for freedom and independence.


    These statements do not deny the fact that, since the beginning of the 19th C., the idea of an ideal cultural and political union of all South Slavic peoples, including the Bulgarians, attracted many supporters among the members of the Croatian intelligentsia who were eager to resist the Austrian and Hungarian attempts of denationalization. The so-called "Illyrian movement" (1830) and the activity of bishop of Dakovo, Josip Juraj Strossmayer (d. 1905), were to a great extent guided by identical considerations. On the other hand, there also existed in Croatia many opponents of the Yugoslav idea. As strongly as the founder of Croatian nationalism, Ante Starcevic (d. 1896), they mistrusted and opposed Yugoslavianism in any form. However, there still were between 1914 and 1918 - both in Croatia and in exile - some noted Croats who worked in favor of a union with Serbia in a sincere belief that the new state would better serve the Croatian national interest than the ramshackle Austrian-Hungarian Empire. As a matter of fact, many Croatians saw then in the prospective dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire the first necessary step in the direction of national independence. Thus for most of them, the final aim was a Croatian state, not a union with Serbia. All the Croatians without exception resented their mistreatment in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, particularly the persistent tendencies of denationalization (germanization and later magyarisation) ; they objected to the arbitrary partition of Croatian territories, and to the political and economic exploitation of Croatia by the governments of Vienna and Budapest. As a highly cultured nation with a long statehood tradition, they disliked the Austrian and later the Hungarian hegemony over Croatia. In addition to this, Austria and Hungary did not show the slightest tendency to understand the rightful political demands of the Croatian people who, during the 19th century, developed into a modern and self-confident nation. In that situation the Croats did what any freedom-loving nation would have done: they fought with dignity in their Sabor (Parliament) to maintain their traditional rights and to preserve their centuries-old statehood (state rights), yet used only parliamentary means to achieve their rightful political goals. 8

    Undoubtedly, there was no disagreement among the Croats in their principal aim to find a way out of the oppressive and rickety Austro-Hungarian Empire. It was very unfortunate, however, that some members of the Croatian intelligentsia went even farther, developing fatal and unrealistic dreams about a large South Slavic state in which all incorporated nations, would find a corresponding place as equal and brotherly partners. Evidently, these Croats were well-intentioned, honest, patriotic and idealistic people, who, at that time, did not quite comprehend the prevailing mentality of the Serbian ruling circles and their insane and incurable cravings for selfish territorial aggrandizement. Most of those Croatian "Yugoslavs" who lived to see the realization of their dreams in the First Yugoslavia, became bitterly disappointed when they saw that their well-meant political efforts had led to something they neither intended nor desired, i. e., a state in which the Croatian nation has been continually oppressed and recklessly exploited. As a matter of fact, some of them later became conspicuous leaders in the fight for Croatian independence, as for instance Dr. Ante Trumbic himself. We may also mention here the outstanding name of Mr. Ivan Mestrovic, one of the greatest sculptors of our times, whose significant contribution in this symposium attests his present attitude in favor of a free and independent Croatia.


    II.

    These so-called Croatian "Yugoslavs" were at that time for the most part members of a political organization known as the Croatian-Serbian Coalition, 9 but some of them did not belong to any political party. Although the "Yugoslavs" always represented a minority in Croatia, Yugoslavianism was still from 1914 to 1918 a more or less reputable idea since its practical implications and consequences were not generally recognized. In those hectic war and post-war days, there was indeed confusion in Croatia, and in addition to this, the pro-Yugoslav propaganda was extremely strong and efficient. Moreover, the Croatian people were not, as a general rule, inimically disposed toward the Serbs as a nation despite the close cooperation of the leaders of the Serbian minority in Croatia with the exponents of Hungarian hegemony (Khuen-Hedervary, SkrIecz et.). In accordance with their policy of divide et impera, the Hungarians promoted the spreading of Serbian influence, thus stirring up the Serbs against the Croats. The Hungarian ruling group in Croatia supported and favored the Orthodox minority at the expense of the Catholic Croats, and prompted that minority to acquire a Serb national consciousness. 10 It is a fact, therefore, that the behavior of the Serbian minority in Croatia was seldom beyond reproach. Though their anti-Croat and fifth column activities were generally detested, the Croats unselfishly rewarded the Serb minority with many important posts, and even the very president of the Croatian Sabor (Parliament) was a Serb. Some Croats idealized the Serbs, and, moreover, went to the Kingdom of Serbia to fight the Serbian wars for territorial aggrandizement. A few Croats even possessed an erroneous notion that the Croats and the Serbs were the same nation. Suffering of such unfortunate delusions, and not being well acquainted with the national character of the Serbs from Serbia, those Croatian "Yugoslavs" sincerely and unselfishly believed that a union with Serbia would be beneficial for Croatia as a protection against foreign threats to her free political development. This was the reason why such prominent Croatian politicians, writers and artists, like Trumbic, Lorkovic, Supilo, Mestrovic, Kljakovic etc., worked in favor of a union with Serbia. It must be emphasized here, however, that the majority of the Croatian people did not take any part in those pro-Yugoslav efforts, since they instinctively felt that those prominent men were steering the Croatian ship of state in a wrong direction. Even more, the Croatian masses expressed on many occasions their open dislike for the plans of the Croatian "Yugoslavs." The representatives of the Croatian Peasant Party and some of the leaders of the Croatian Rights Party, who were, indeed, the only genuine interpreters of public opinion, repeatedly warned those idealistic Croatian "Yugoslavs" against their false idealism and a union with Serbia. The Croatian leader Stjepan Radic protested in 1918 at a meeting of the National Council of the

    Slovenes, Croats and Serbs against its methods and aims, and said: "Your entire work in the National Council is neither democratic nor constitutional, just, or wise... You are completely wrong if you think that you can arbitrarily disregard over thousand years and more of the Croatian history and Croatian statehood... All of you have met here today in order to commit a subversive act against the people, i.e., against Croatia and the Croats." 11

    Despite such and similar warnings, the Croatian "Yugoslavs" continued their ill- conceived political efforts, persisting in playing the role of self-appointed leaders. However, there were some of them who early left the Yugoslav bandwagon and showed an independent attitude. A prominent member of this group, Frano Supilo, "had reliable information that the Serbian government while playing with the Yugoslav idea, really wanted to create a Greater Serbia at the expense of other Yugoslav peoples, particularly of Croats." 12 So he changed his policy, and, in 1916, declared himself in favor of a separate Croatian state, resigning at the same time from the Yugoslav Committee. He probably came to the conclusion which was later clearly formulated by a great Croatian scholar, Dr. Milan Sufflay, who wrote: "The Yugoslav idea has no dynamism. It does not mean anything in comparison with the powerful Croatian idea. In Croatia, the Yugoslav idea is only a thin layer under which the Croatian national volcano is boiling..." 13 The profound truth of this statement was distinctively demonstrated in 1941 when, not having a strong backing idea, the royal Yugoslavia disintegrated in a few days.


    III.

    As to the Yugoslav Committee, it was founded in 1914, and regularly constituted in 1915 in Paris. It was exclusively made up of exiled politicians, journalists, artists etc., from Croatia and Slovenia. Its principal aim was the establishment of a Yugoslav federation based upon a complete equality of its component parts. The members of the Committee were some pro-Yugoslav Croats, some Slovenes, and some members of the Serbian minority in Croatia. It has been generally recognized that the Croatian members of the Committee, never received a formal mandate from the Croatian people to represent it. Hence, they actually spoke only for themselves. However, both the Yugoslav Committee in exile and the previously mentioned National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs in Zagreb, though
    having no genuine democratic background, were not opposed by the Croatian public opinion as long as they worked for a separation of Croatia from Austro-Hungary. Particularly, the Yugoslav Committee could count on the support of public opinion in Croatia in its great and rightful struggle against the secret Treaty of London, signed on April 19, 1915, by which the Great Powers promised some of the Croatian territories to Italy. This treaty which was so fatal for Croatia, was one of the main reasons for Dr. Trumbic and other exiled Croats to accept a defective Yugoslavia, without Bulgaria (which, at that time, was in the camp of Central Powers and more- over was pathologically hated by the Serbs). Such a Yugoslavia was, of course, unacceptable for the Croatian people. Nevertheless, it was forced upon them after the end of the First World War, for the most part because of the fifth-column activities of the Serbian minority in Croatia, under the leadership of Svetozar Pribicevic. Now, the Yugoslav Committee had to fight not only the perfidious Treaty of London but to engage also in another struggle. it was the struggle against the Pan-Serbian aims of the Serbian politicians who, like Nikola Pasic, wanted to create a Greater Serbia at any price. The members of the Yugoslav Committee succeeded in negotiating two agreements with the Serbian government, the Declaration of Corfu (July, 1917), and the Declaration of Geneva (November, 1918). 14 The Declaration of Corfu provided, among other things, that the State of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes "will be a free and independent kingdom" and "a constitutional, democratic, and parliamentary monarchy," but that "only a numerically qualified majority will be competent to adopt the Constitution in the Constituent Assembly." The last provision of the Declaration, like many other provisions, was never respected by the Serbian government, and the Constitution of the new state (the Vidovdan Constitution) was adopted in 1921 by a simple, not a qualified majority, without Croatian participation. The Declaration of Geneva stipulated that the provisional government in Zagreb, i.e., the National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, and the Serbian government in Belgrade, were to function separately as governments in their respective territories until the meeting of the Constituent Assembly. This second agreement between the representatives of the Yugoslav Committee and the Serbian government was shamelessly repudiated by the latter.

    However well-intentioned the Croatian signer of the Declaration of Corfu, Dr. Trumbic, may have been, this was certainly not a document which was in agreement with the political will of the Croatian nation. At the utmost, it represented only a personal opinion of Dr. Trumbic and his friends, and nothing more. Moreover, it was completely unacceptable for the Croatian people, since it denied the existence of a separate Croatian nation, making the Croats a part of a non-existing "Yugoslav nation." It will be interesting to relate, at this point, an important statement made in
    1923 by the leader of the Croatian Peasant Party who actually spoke in behalf of the entire Croatian nation. In a conversation with Mr. Wickham Steed, a great friend of Yugoslavia, in his home in London, Stjepan Radic is reported to have said: "States are not formed in the drawing rooms but in the hearts of the people. The Declaration of Corfu was not signed by the authorized representatives of the Croatian people. The right to self-determination is more important than this declaration which, I emphasize again, was not signed by the authorized representatives of the Croatian people. We are not a nation with three names (as the Declaration implied), or a tribe, we are rather the Croatian nation which has possessed for over a thousand years her continuous statehood, an old European culture and a Western civilization. The acceptance of the Declaration of Corfu means, in effect, the destruction of civilization and a return into barbarism, not with-standing the fact that from the view-point of the postwar international law the Declaration was a real crime because, in this case, the principle of self-determination for the Croatian people has been disregarded. And the right to self-determination is and should be the foundation of a new order in Europe, and the best guarantee of international peace."

    15 This has always been the customary Croatian opinion about the alleged "cornerstone of the new state", as Mr. Steed called the Declaration of Corfu, and Stjepan Radic was only a faithful interpreter of the popular will when he made his historical statement.


    IV.

    While the Yugoslav Committee was still working in exile for its aim of an equitable union with Serbia, fighting the Greater Serbian plans as advocated by the Serbian government and its Prime Minister Nikola Pasic, the Croatian Sabor (Parliament) met in Zagreb, on October 29, 1918, and unanimously adopted a resolution declaring that all the relations between Croatia, Slavonia and Dalmatia on the one hand, and the Kingdom of Hungary and the Austrian Empire, on the other hand, are dissolved, and that Dalmatia, Croatia, and Slavonia with Rijeka are declared as a completely independent state. This resolution was enthusiastically greeted by the Croatian people, and great manifestations took place in Zagreb in favor of Croatian independence. However, at the same time, the Sabor adopted in its resolution the idea that this new state of Croatia will form a union with Serbia and Montenegro, provided however that the will of the Croatian people would be respected and the Constitution of the united state passed only by a "pre-determined qualified majority, excluding any majorization," also that "both the form of government and the internal organization of the state be founded on full equality of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs." As a result of some cunning machinations of some Serbian members of the National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, the Sabor also transferred the supreme executive power in Croatia to the latter. 16 The session of the Sabor was then closed under the assumption that the next session will he called soon in order to ratify the subsequent decisions of the National Council. Therefore the Sabor was not dissolved but next meeting was never called, evidently because it may have hampered the deceptive tactics of the Croatian Serbs, particularly Svetozar Pribicevic, who did not trust even a Sabor in which his party possessed a majority.

    It must be mentioned here, however, that the Croatian Sabor of 1918, even though legally elected, was not a genuine interpreter of Croatian public opinion. It was chosen in 1913 under a system of limited suffrage, and its original term had already expired. The elections of Dec. 16 and 17, 1913, were held in an atmosphere of unfair and oppressive maneuvering and it was evident that the administrative apparatus favored the Croatian-Serbian Coalition. So it was not unusual when, by the various gerrymandering tactics, the Coalition received 47 representatives in the Sabor, and the other Croatian parties only 38 representatives. 17 All the representatives of the Serbian minority in Croatia were elected on the Coalition ticket. Pribicevic, after his break with King Alexander, published a book (La dictature de Roi Alexandre, Paris 1933) in which he, among other things, admitted that the composition of the Sabor would have been different if the elections were held in 1918. How arbitrary were the acts of the majority in that Sabor may be best seen from the fact that, in 1914, it was busy to unseat Stjepan Radic who was unanimously elected in his electoral district. 18

    The National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, after receiving from the Croatian Sabor the appearance of a seeming legality, ruled with dictatorial methods without recalling the legislative body. The entire power in the National Council was gradually taken over by one of its vicepresidents, the Croatian Serb Svetozar Pribicevic, since its president Dr. Korosec left for Geneva. Pribicevic and his henchmen instituted a regime of terror against patriotic Croats who were opposed to a union with Serbia. In Zagreb, Pribicevic's persecution led to the imprisonment and exile of many outstanding Croats. It was a tragic irony of fate that in those decisive days of Croatian history the executive power in Zagreb was in the hands of a ruthless Serb who was a sworn enemy of Croatian independence. Thus the first Yugoslavia was created in an atmosphere of persecution, without any genuine participation of the Croatian people in this important decision. Especially the decision of Nov. 24, 1918, for a union with Serbia - which was so ardently opposed by the Croatian deputies Radic and Hrvoj, and the Congress of the Croatian Peasant Party of Nov. 25, 1919, as mentioned in the beginning of this study, was never approved by the Croatian Parliament though Stjepan Radic explicitly asked for a meeting of that body. This demand was rejected by the National Council which, apparently, did not have the necessary confidence that the Sabor would approve Pribicevic's treacherous steps towards a quick and unconditional union with Serbia.

    The National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, and particularly its Serbian members, felt the animosity of the Croatian people toward the union, and for this reason Pribicevic and his accomplices tried to speed it up. Even in the very eyes of a friend of Yugoslavia it appears that "the National Council (its Central Committee) hastily decided to send a delegation to Belgrade to proclaim a union." 19 They did not call a plenary session of the Council to discuss the conditions for a union, rather decided the issue in a Committee which was completely dominated by Pribicevic
    who himself later regretted his fatal role. Even this Council in its instructions to the delegation had emphasized in Point 1 that the "final organization of the new state may be determined only by a general National Constituent Assembly" with a "two- third majority." The delegation left Zagreb on November 28, 1918, and already on December 1, the union with Serbia was officially proclaimed in Belgrade. 20 On December 3, the National Council declared that, because of the execution of the union, its power has ceased to exist on the whole territory of Croatia, and so the Council dissolved itself. Instead of a federal Yugoslavia based upon the principle of national equality, a state was born that "to all intents and purposes was an aggrandized Serbia." 21 On Dec. 5, 1918, a spontaneous demonstration took place in Zagreb against a union with the Serbs, and in favor of an independent Republic of Croatia. The demonstrations of the Croatian patriots were cruelly suppressed; 13 freedom-loving men were killed, and 17 wounded. They were the first Croatian martyrs who sacrificed their lives fighting the Serbian tyranny. After that, Pasic and Pribicevic introduced a new regime of increased terror in Croatia to destroy by force the Croatian independence movement. Since the Croatian peasants were particularly opposed to the union, favoring the Republic of Croatia, many of them were savagely beaten or imprisoned. From all this is is quite evident that the First Yugoslavia was born in blood, persecution and violence, and as an unjust, oppresive, evil, and contemptible creation was in advance sentenced to death.

    The Serbian persecutions were answered by the Croatian protests and appeals. On February 3, 1919, in front of a great mass of people, the Croatian leader Stjepan Radic declared in Zagreb: "In behalf of four fifths of the Croatian people we demand a Croatian Republic and a Croatian Constitutional Assembly. We are for a Constitutional Assembly because we see how our sacred and beloved country, Croatia, is being destroyed." 22 This meeting was attended by 6,782 delegates who came from all over Croatia to protest against the Serbian terror and the union with Serbia. The Administrative Committee of the Croatian Republican Peasant Party also passed unanimously a resolution on March 8, 1919, protesting against the Serbian tyranny in Croatia and the union with Serbia, emphasizing: "The Croatian citizens do not recognize the so-called Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes under the Karadordevic dynasty, because this kingdom was proclaimed without the consent of the Croatian Sabor... We do not recognize the State Council (Drzavno Vijece) of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes in Belgrade. We deny any legal authority to the central government in Belgrade." 23 This protest was translated into French and handed to some foreign representatives in Zagreb. It is also remarkable that, in Croatia, 157,669 signatures were collected for an appeal sent to President Wilson in Paris, in which the Croatians asked for the establishment of a Republic of Croatia. However, this appeal, made in 1919, remained unanswered. Not only the Croatian Peasant Party as the largest political party in Croatia protested against the union with Serbia. The largest Croatian minority party of those days, the Croatian Rights Party under the presidency of Dr. Alexander Horvat, issued, on March 1, 1919, a proclamation protesting the existing situation and demanding the establishment of a free Croatian state to be formed on the principle of national self-determination and the old constitutional rights of Croatia. 24 And on December 8, 1920, after a sweeping victory of Radic in the general elections, the elected Croatian representatives unanimously swore to work intensely to liberate Croatia from the Serbian yoke, and to form a free republic which would include all the Croatian provinces. However, all these expressions of popular will were repeatedly suppressed by the organs of the Serbian government, and thus accomplished practically nothing. On the contrary, on June 28, 1921, as already mentioned, a Constitution was adopted in Belgrade with the main purpose to secure Serbian hegemony in all non-Serbian lands, particularly in Croatia. Not a single freely elected Croatian deputy voted for this unitarian and centralist Vidovdan-Constitution. The provision of a necessary qualified majority, as agreed in the Declaration of Corfu, and also contained in the instructions to the Croatian delegation, was shamelessly disregarded. This is how the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes came into existence, and how the Vidovdan Constitution of 1921 was imposed upon the subjugated peoples of that oppressor state.



    V.


    Certain definite conclusions emerge quite clearly from our evidence. They are:


    1. The Croatian "Yugoslavs" members of the Yugoslav Committee, who took active part in the movement for a union with Serbia, were honest and well-intentioned persons but without any formal sanction for their activities. They were neither the elected representatives of the people, nor in any way whatsoever authorized to act in behalf of the Croatian nation.

    2. The Croatian Sabor of 1918, even though legally elected, was not, because of its composition and its domination by the Croatian Serbs, the real interpreter of Croatia's political will. But even this imperfect Sabor (from the Croatian point of view) did never ratify the Yugoslav union as was done by the Serbian Parliament in Belgrade. In fact, it was never called to do so, though the Sabor resolution of Oct. 29, 1918, explicitly specified that "the next meeting will be called when needed." The Sabor was never dissolved but it was not summoned to give its sanction to the most important decision of that period, i.e., the union with Serbia arbitrarily proclaimed in Belgrade, on Dec. 1, 1918.

    3. The National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs was a de facto body, not a creation of the Croatian constitutional law. As such it was illegal, and, consequently, the transfer of the executive power from the Sabor to that Council was unconstitutional and illegal, too. If regarded as a revolutionary body, the National Council in no way materialized the popular sentiment, and its members never disputed this fact. They acted on the assumption that they knew better what was in the interest of the people than the people themselves did. Their general attitude
    was the attitude of the "enlightened despots" of the 18th century. 25


    4. The evidence in this article points out that Yugoslavia was created by the deceptive machinations of a small but vociferous minority, against the repeatedly expressed will of the Croatian people. The meetings and the congresses of the Croatian Peasant Party, and the political demonstrations against a union with Serbia in many Croatian cities, in 1918, decisively prove this point. The "Vidovdan Constitution" of 1921 was accepted without Croat participation, and only with a simple, unqualified majority, all this contrary to the Declarations of Corfu and Geneva, to the resolutions of the Croatian Sabor, and the instructions of the National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs. Therefore, this Constitution was in a very sharp contrast with the political will of the Croatian nation, as repeatedly expressed on many occasions. This was later proven by the whole political development in Yugoslavia from 1918 to 1941. We agree completely with one of the most distinguished Croatian scholars, Prof. Filip Lukas, who has arrived at the same conclusion, "Yugoslavia was not created on the principle of self-determination." 26 He adds that not only the Croats but also the Bulgarians, the Albanians, and even the Slovenes, were not asked if they wished to join the Serbs. All these peoples were forcibly incorporated into Yugoslavia, and the principle of self-determination was, in their case, intentionally disregarded and violated.

    5. Never since the establishment of the First Yugoslavia has the Croatian nation been asked in a free election, or a free plebiscite, to approve the union with Serbia. It is clear, however, that a free decision of the Croatian nation would inevitably be in favor of political independence. Therefore, Yugoslavia can exist only if supported by a regime of terror and persecution. In all free elections, in the First Yugoslavia, the Croatian people gave its vote only to such parties which emphasized its right to freedom and independence. 27 And when, in 1941, a favorable occasion arose, the Croats declared their independence, and an avalanche of popular will swept away the despised oppressor state. This was, in fact, a Croatian national plebiscite against Yugoslavia. 28

    6. As to the Second, Tito's Communist Yugoslavia, the story of her formation in 1945 is very similar to the events of 1918, except for a difference in the degree of violence used in both cases. The discussion of the creation of the Second Yugoslavia is rather beyond the scope of our study. However, there is no denying the fact that the methods used by the Serbian Communists in 1945 were much more ruthless and cruel than those applied by the Serbian Monarchists in 1918. All this because the regime of the Communist state is by itself more terroristic and oppressive than the previous royal regime, and its aims are certainly more Pan-Serbian than those of the First Yugoslavia. So it is no wonder that the Croatians have never been asked to approve the existence of the Second Yugoslavia in a free plebiscite, nor will they ever be asked to do so. Thus there can be no doubt about the accuracy of our final statement which is: the First and Second Yugoslavia were both created against the will of the Croatian people.

    --------------------------------------------------


    1 For instance, Mr. P. D. Ostovic in his book "The truth about Yugoslavia" (New York: Roy Publishers, 1952) gives an intelligible account of those events. Yet it must be mentioned that he has been a life-long adherent of Yugoslav unity, and so is in some places biased in favor of Yugoslavia which is, on the whole, intensely despised by the Croatian nation which, on the basis of her experience, sees in it only a cleverly disguised Serbian hegemony. Accordingly, Mr. Ostovic has understated some of the popular manifestations in favor of Croatian independence which occured in 1918 and thereafter.


    2 Systematic descriptions of the formation of Yugoslavia may be found in the following books: Dr. Mladen Lorkovic, Die Entstehung des Staates der Serben, Kroaten und Slowenen (Berlin: Juristische Dissertation, 1938), Dr. Ferdinand Schrems, Die Rechtstellung der Kroaten im frueheren Habsburger Reich und im heutigen jugoslawischen Staat (Hamburg: Dissertation, 1939), and Dr. Emil Robert Gaertner, Kroatien in Suedslawien (Berlin: Juenker and Duennhaupt Verlag, 1944). Pertinent documents of that period may be found in the book by Dr. Ferdo Sisic, Dokumenti o postanku Kralievine Srba, Hrvata i Slovenaca (1914-1919), (Zagreb: Matica Hrvatska, 1920). However, the documents concerning the manifestations of Croatian opposition to Yugoslavia, had been omitted from this book by Mr. Sisic, who, as an ardent pro-Yugoslav, evidently believed in the method of historical blackout.

    3 Even Mr. Ostovic, who unjustly accuses Radic that he, in 1918, "was stirring up trouble in Croatia" (op. cit., p. 9B.) must admit that "his (Radic's) Peasant Party, which he founded, brought him into closer contact with the people than any other Croatian parliamentarian, and he was therefore in a better position to interpret popular feeling" (op. cit., p. 97).

    4 The National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs (Narodno Vijece SHS) was organized in Zagreb, on Oct. 5, 1918, by the Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes of pro- Yugoslav orientation. It was a self-appointed and not an elected body. Its president was a Slovene, Dr. Korogec, but the Council was cleverly dominated by a Serb from Croatia, Svetozar Pribicevic, who wanted to effect a union of Croatia and Serbia at any price. It is certain that under such conditions the National Council in no way represented the political will of Croatia.

    5 In the meeting of the National Council of Nov. 24, 1918, Stjepan Radic made his famous speech in which he protested against the proposals of some of the adherents of the union, and asked for a meeting of the Croatian Sabor (Parliament) as the only legal parliamentary body in Croatia. Another deputy, Dragutin Hrvoj, who represented the Croatian Rights Party, emphasized the old claim of the Croatian people to live in its own independent state, and, on the whole, supported Radic's position. However, other speakers, belonging for the most part to the Croatian- Serbian Coalition, a party oriented toward Yugoslav unity, spoke in favor of a union with the Serbs.

    6 Dr. Rudolf Horvat, "Ljetopis Hrvatske 1918-1942," in Nasa Domovina (Zagreb: GUS, 1942), Vol. L, p. 218.

    7 In all the subsequent free elections in the Croatian provinces, Radic's Peasant Party received an absolute majority of all Croatian votes. The Croatian-Serbian Coalition disappeared as a political organization. Its Croatian members either vanished from the political scene, or became Serbian stooges and exponents of Serbian hegemony in Croatia. They were regarded as quislings and as such were greatly despised by the Croatian People. The sweeping victory of the Croatian Peasant Party in the first parliamentary elections in 1920 was particularly remarkable. A party ideologist, Rudolf Herceg, evaluates the significance of those elections as follows: "By this victory the Croatian people has declared that the decision of the National Council of Nov. 24, 1918, was made without its approval, and so did not correspond with the will of the Croatian nation." (Rudolf Herceg, Die Ideologie der kroatischen Bauernbewegung, Zagreb, 1923, p. 69.).

    8 It is very strange, indeed, to find in some of the descriptions of that time the expression of sympathy for the oppressors and a scorn for the oppressed. This particularly applies to a pro-Serbian and pro- Tito symposium published under the title of "Yugoslavia" (ed. R. J. Kerner, Berkeley and Los Angeles, 1949). Mr. Malbone W. Graham, writing about the Constitutional Development to 1914, speaks with a peculiar contempt about the fight of a small nation for her independence. He sneers at the Croatian parliamentarism with such ugly and unscholarly words as the "artifices of obstructionism", "parliamentary sabotage", "small-scale political blackmail", "destructive and negative objectives", etc. (P.117). In his two articles about the Constitutional development, especially in the second article which considers the development from 1914-1941, Mr. Graharn has clearly demonstrated not only a remarkable absence ot insight and an amazing lack of objectivity but also an incomprehensible preference for Yugoslav unitarianism which is, in its last consequences, only a cover-up for Pan-Serbian imperialism.

    9 The Croatian-Serbian Coalition, formed in 1905, was a political organization composed of Croats and members of the Serbian minority in Croatia. Though many outstanding Croats belonged to it, it was dominated by the Serbs (Pribicevic, Popovic, Medakovic, Peles etc.). It alternated between a revolutionary pro-Yugoslav policy, by promoting the friendship toward the Kingdom of Serbia, and a detestable political opportunism, by collaborating with the representatives of the Hungarian hegemony in Croatia. It was, in turn, often patronized by them.

    10 Ostovic, op. cit., p. 13

    11 Franjo, Nevistic, "Jugoslavija nije nikad bila hrvatska drzava", Hrvatska, Kulurno- politicki zbornik (Buenos Aires, 1949), p. 23.

    12 Cit. by Dr. Julius Makanec, Die Entwicklung des kroatischen Nationalism (Zagreb, 1944), p. 65.

    13 Ostovic, op. cit, p. 81.

    14 The text of both documents is published in Mr. Ostovic's book (op. cit, p. 274- 285.); see also Sisic, op. cit.


    15 This is quoted by Dr. Franjo Nevistic (op. cit., pp. 20-21). Mr. Nevistic, as a jurist, denies the validity of the Declaration of Corfu for three reasons: 1. it declared that the Croatians are a part of a non-existing nation with three names; 2. it did not take into account the Croatian statehood, which existed for over a thousand years, and
    so violated the basic principle of the Croatian constitutional law; 3. it was not signed by the authorized representatives of the Croatian people.

    16 In opinion of Dr. Nevistic, this decision of the Croatian Sabor had no juridical or political foundation; it was not based upon the will of the people or the constitutional rights of Croatia. The Croatian Sabor was a centuries-old representative body which, during its long history, defended the traditional rights of the Croatian people on many occasions. But this particular Sabor of 1918 did not function quite properly. Its decision to transfer power to the National Council was indeed a coup d'etat, and as such an unconstitutional act. The National Council SHS was not known in the constitutional law of Croatia. The Sabor had no right to transfer any of its powers to
    a constitutionally non-existing body. Accordingly, the National Council, too, acted unconstitutionally in exercising this power. Thus the whole union with Serbia may be explained only as a revolutionary and not as a legal act, executed by a minority, which was never recognized by the Croatian people or its rightful representatives. (cf. Nevistic, op. cit., p. 22.)

    17 This period has been described in the book by Vlaho Raic, Hrvatska i Srbija (Buenos Aires, 1953), p. 93. ff.

    18 Ibid., p. 94.

    19 Ostovic, op. cit., p. 97

    20 The date of December 1, 1918, has been regarded by the Croatian nation as one of the darkest days in her history, since it was a day when a small minority, by the methods of political deception and terror, destroyed the traditional rights of Croatia.

    21 Ostovic, op. cit., p. 98.

    22 Horvat, op. cit, p. 218.

    23 Horvat, op. cit, p. 227.

    24 Gaernter, op. cit., p. 66.

    25 This arrogant and obtrusive attitude of the pro-Yugoslav part of Croatian intelligentsia, led the leader of the Croatian Peasant Party, Stjepan Radic, to the sound conclusion that the broad masses of the, people, particularly the peasants (80% of population in Croatia), should be the real basis of Croatian political strivings. He knew well that they have a good political sense, and are not easily deceived by sweet propaganda slogans of naive pro-Yugoslav dreamers, Serbian stooges, and corrupt and selfish politicians.

    26 Filip Lukas, "Da li je Jugoslavija nastala na temeIju narodnog samoodredenja", Hrvatska Revija (Buenos Aires), Vol. 4, 1951, Vol. l., 1952.

    27 No "Yugoslav" political party could ever gain deeper roots in Croatia. The so- called Croatian "Yugoslavs" were always regarded by the Croatian people either as unrealistic dreamers, or, especially after 1918, as traitors, quislings, and outcasts who, for one reason or another, willingly served the oppressors.

    28 Who could have expected the Croats to fight for a state in which they had been imprisoned against their will? The "Yugoslav" army therefore disintegrated in 1941 as Tito's army will inevitably disintegrate if a new war comes. The Croats will never willingly defend their prison, Yugoslavia. In 1941, their principal aim was to get rid of the Serbian oppressors. They were not interested in the war between the big powers, rather in the realization of their own independence which was so persistently denied to them. During the Second World War, the Croats valiantly fought the Serbian Chetniks and Tito's Communists for two reasons: 1) to preserve their national state which the Serbian Communists and Chetniks intended to destroy; 2) to preserve their free form of life against all the manifestations of the inherent Communist and Chetnik barbarism. However, this does not mean that they approved all of the actions of the government which in 1941, under very difficult circumstances was established in Croatia.

  2. #2

    Who Created the First Yugoslav State?

    Source: Croatian Viewpoint

    Once The Whole World Knew Of The Croats!

    Historical evidence of Croatia, Croatian people and the Croatian language are scattered throughout the pages and maps of both ancient and more recent history.
    • The French king, for example, created an elite Croatian regiment, "Le Royal Croate", and from "les cravates" neckties came to be known as 'cravats' in the 18th century.
    • European cartographers recorded Bosnia as "Turkish Croatia" up until the 19th century.
    • In Istanbul Croatian was the 'second' language and language of 'diplomacy' for centuries.
    • In America, Nikola Tesla recorded his birthplace as Croatia, as did tens of thousands of others in 19th century.



    While the word Croat became engraved in history all around the globe, the opposite was occurring in the once great Croatian kingdom itself. The educated classes were gradually replacing the Croatian culture and identity with artificial descriptions such as Slav or Illyrian.

    So How Did Croats Become 'South Slavs'?

    Pan-slavism had spread into Croatia as a legacy of Saints Cyril & Metodius, and Illyrianism from the previous Greek, and then Roman name given to the Croatian region. According to the late Prof. B. Franolic, during the counter reformation period in Croatia, "Guided by the work of Jesuits both at home and abroad, literary creation expressed broad doctrines advocating unification of the South Slavs and reunion of the Eastern Christians with Rome".

    For most of its history the Pontifical College of St. Gerome in Rome was known as the Pontifical Illyrian College of St. Gerome, until the recent recognition of Croatia in the late 20th century. This institution had been a great influence on Jesuits such as Bartol Kasic who published the book "The Structure of the Illyrian language in Two Books" in the 17th century, although today, ironically, amongst Croats he is known as the "father of Croatian linguistics".

    The Franciscan Andrija Kacic-Miosic also produced a 'best seller' book in 1756 entitled 'Pleasant Conversation of Slavic Peoples'. These authors and others played a key role in the development of the shokavian dialect and they were true believers in the concept of 'slavic' peoples. Croatian clerics such as B. Kasic and J. Krizanic who had traveled to Russia, were followed in later centuries by the powerful Illyrian and south-slav political activism of the Bishops Vrhovac, Racki and Strossmayer within the Hapsburg empire to unite so-called 'south slavs'.


    The Politicalization Of South Slavism

    During the last half of the 19th century pan-slavists were able to take power because the majority of rural Croatian people had been ineligible to vote in the feudal system. Professor Margaret Macmillan who lectures at the University of Toronto in her book, 'Peacemakers: The Paris Conference of 1919 and Its Attempt to End War' is the granddaughter of former 1918 British Prime Minister Lloyd George. Macmillan states that, "The Peace Conference, contrary to what many people have believed since, did not create Yugoslavia; that was done by the time it met. ... The creation of Yugoslavia was primarily a byproduct of domestic politics which already existed before the Paris Peace Conference. ... Seventy years later the powers were equally unable to prevent its disintegration." The so-called 'first' Yugoslavia was eventually recognized internationally in 1919, with England being one of the last powers to recognize it in June 1919.

    Russia was also a factor in Croatian 'south slav' politics as noted in 'The Rough (travel) Guide to Croatia',. "Strossmayer ... (concluded) ... that an independent Yugoslav (which literally means 'South Slav' in Croatian and Serbian) including all Croats and Serbs and supported by Russia, would be the best solution. ... exiles formed the 'Yugoslav Committee' in Paris in order to lobby foreign governments ... the political leaders of Austria-Hungary's Serbs, Croats and Slovenes formed the National Council in Zagreb ... declared their independence from Budapest and Vienna."

    In the same theme, the life of Bishop J. G. Strossmayer is described in detail by I. Sivric. This book describes Strossmayer's correspondence with the 19th century Russian idealist, philosopher and Christian slavophile, V. S. Soloviev. Sivric writes, "Regardless of how ardently he (Strossmayer) loved his nation and what sacrifices he performed for it, the welfare of the Church and the realization of her mission in the world had the priority over that of his nation ... the main goal of the life of the Bishop was to reconcile the Eastern and Western Church ... His diocese, one of the richest in Europe ... All this wealth ... extended as far as Paris, France, ... (where) ... unlimited funds (given) by Strossmayer for his (Louis Leger, professor at the Sorbonne) ... publications dealing with South Slav problems."

    The problem with Ante Starcevic, for Strossmayer, was that Starcevic stood in the way of 'south slav' unity because he did not accept the invented Serbian claims to all the pre-existing Croatian Orthodox churches and peoples in Croatia. Sivric describes Strossmayer's shocking reaction to the illness of Starcevic as recorded in his correspondence to Racki "I do not know if one should wish him (Starcevic) to be dead because he poisoned our youth". But it wasn't only Starcevic, now known as the 'Father of the Croatian Nation' who was criticized.

    Macek describes the opposition to Radic in detail in his book, 'In the Struggle For Freedom' as follows. "In its persecution of the Croatian Peasant Party, the government had the strong support of the great majority of the intelligentsia, the middle classes, and above all, of the Catholic clergy. ... Why, ... The answer is that it was the instinctive defense of the educated classes who could not and would not accept the despised peasants as their equals, let alone permit them a decisive role in national politics. Before long, the priests were denouncing the party from their pulpits ... "


    The Illyrian Kingdom

    Croatian south-slav politicians in the former Austro-Hungarian empire stigmatized political alternatives for Croatian independence, such as Starcevic's Party of Rights, or Radic's Peasant Party - and they left nothing to chance, working to build a south-slav foundation, creating,
    • (Illyrian)"People's Party" (the legacy of the Illyrian Movement: Narodna Stranka, 1841)
    • "Illyrian" literary society (Matica Illyrska, 1842);
    • Standardized Serbo-Croat language (Vienna Agreement 1850);
    • 'Yugoslav Academy of Arts & Sciences' (1866);
    • Constituent status for Serb immigrants to Croatia (1867).



    The influence of the British who at Versailles were described by M. MacMillan as "only a handful of specialists or cranks" had been overshadowed by the emergence of Russian or Soviet power. Croatian politicians such as Supilo, Smodlaka, Trumbic and other true believers such as the sculptor Ivan Mestrovic and all of the upper class did not support the idea of a Croatian independent state. Thus a 'Croato-Serbian' political coalition took power, the forerunner to the 'National Council of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs' in Zagreb and the declaration of the first south-slav state there.
    As for the 'Yugoslav Committee' in London in exile, its mission was to lobby for support abroad, and to unite with independent Serbia, resulting in the Corfu Declaration. The Yugoslav Committee ultimately worked as representatives of the 'National Council' in the creation of the 'Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes'.



    The Yugoslav Committee in 1917

    The British Scapegoats

    Many Croatian authors have minimized the role of Croats and magnified the role of foreigners, mainly the British, in the creation of the first Yugoslav state, citing British writers such as Evans, Gladstone or Seton-Watson. However I have shown that this south slav state was the product of influences closer to home, from the Italian peninsula or from France or Russia.

    If not for Napoleon there would have been no 'enlightenment' in any newly created Illyrian provinces, or Illyrian Kingdom, and considering the lethal legacy of this Illyrianism, namely Yugoslavia, it would seem that the British did not defeat the French soon enough!

    Croatian authors such as Percela & Guldescu (1), Omrcanin (2), Grubusic (3), Vitez (4), or Cic (5), who have self-censored part of their history, have had an influence on some authors of non-Croatian origin such as the late American M. McAdams (6) or the Australian L. Shaw (7). These and others took Croatian authors at face value, myself included. Although I majored in communist political systems including communist Yugoslavia at university it was a long time before I questioned the origins of the first south-slav state. In fact, before Croatian independence, it was deemed by supporters of a free Croatia that anything written against Croats was Yugoslav propaganda.

    Vesna Drapac in 'Constructing Yugoslavia A Transnational History', in 335 pages has done little more to enlighten readers about the Croatian pan-slav politicians contribution to Yugoslavism other than to briefly say, "Discussions about South Slav unity (as opposed to the independence of, for example, the Serbs or Montenegrins) were Croatian in origin. Ljudevit Gaj ... was a leading proponent of the Illyrian movement ... Illyrianism, influenced by Pan-slavism, also sought greater understanding between South Slavs on cultural and linguistic grounds. The Croatian liberal Bishop of Djakovo, Josip Juraj Strossmayer (1815-1095) ... became one of the South Slav ideal's most illustrious advocates. He was known as a founding father of Yugoslavia. ..."

    Drapac instead focuses on quotations of British travel writers in Croatia in the 19th century who she alleges, “informed the creation of Yugoslavia ... (that Yugoslavia) … became what outsiders willed it to be, from its foundation ... was constructed, promoted and sustained by a combination of international and transnational forces." ... (and she argues that) ... "the history of Yugoslavia is inherently transnational in the sense that it cannot be understood in isolation ... (that Yugoslavia's) ... actual form was profoundly shaped by what outsiders had imagined it should be from at least the second half of the nineteenth century ... that the story of Yugoslavia is not a story about Europe's backyard but about Europe itself".


    Let The Debate Begin

    Gradually the hidden chapter of Croatian history is coming to light, although Macek's book, in hindsight did shed some light on the era, as did Katicic and Novak in 'Two Thousand Years of Writing in Croatia' in 1987. Also, M. Kovacevic writes in 1994 that, " ... the Croatian-Serbian coalition was founded in 1905, which fought for the union of Croatian lands, ... the political independence of Croatia and the union of South Slavic nations, after their candidates won a majority in the Parliament in 1906 (and kept the situation unchanged until 1918) ..."

    For the first time L. Boban's book, 'Croatian Borders - 1918 to 1993' gives us a detailed chronology and maps of how Croatian politicians, along with some Slovenes or Serbs, formed the first south-slav state. Let the debate begin.

    In this context Croatian people may discover a disturbing pattern -- that their Croatian politicians are willing participants or even the ideological vanguard in rapprochement with Serbia today. Today it's the Croatian cultural, ecumenical and political leaders who are again laying the foundation for an unconditional 'reconciliation' process with the recent aggressor, Serbia. Of course Serbia has always had allies in the West, but it's equally true that Serbian intransigence has been punished by western governments more than once in the past. In contrast, Russia as Serbia's enduring ally has always given unconditional support for Serbia's aggrandizement. In spite of everything you will rarely hear Croats blaming Russian pressure or influence for the creation of any Yugoslav state. Let the Debate Begin.

    A century ago the majority of Croatian people had no say, and illiteracy was common, but today there is no excuse for such political naivety. So, with impunity, Croatian civilians have good reason to be shocked and traumatized by the activities of the Croatian government as they witness,

    • the unconditional handover of their patriotic generals to the Hague ad hoc court, in effect making self-defense a crime, contrary to the UN Charter;
    • [ NOTE: On 15 April 2011 to the shock of the entire Croatian nation their generals were wrongly sentenced at the Hague, Ante Gotovina - 24 years; Mladen Markac - 18 years -sentence to be appealed. ]
    • A premature military and economic rapprochement with the Serbian leadership whilst the Serbian war criminal Mladic, and others are still at large;
    • Investment in pro-Yugoslav projects in various Croatian regions, for example in relation to Tito in Kumrovec, or the denial of Croatian ancestry of Nikola Tesla or Jankovic Stojan in Grcki Islam;
    • Application to be a member of the EU, without a referendum in Croatia.




    IN CONCLUSION

    Croatian political history of the 19th and early 20th century had almost disappeared into a black hole along with the genocide of Croatian people, just maybe because Croats have been self-censoring it, rather than because foreigners were responsible for it. Two decades after independence, the vast majority of Croatian people are horrified at the apparent anti-Croatian activity of their own government but instead of blaming Europe, Britain or America for treachery, Croatian people should scrutinize their own political history. Using the quotations above I have argued that foreigners, in particular the British, did not create 'south-slav' nationalism - their travel writers, journalists, and politicians described it, and in the absence of any alternative national political culture in Croatia, they had to deal with it, during a period of political change and violent upheaval in European history.


    Jean Lunt Marinovic
    April 2011

    Footnotes

    (1) In their 'Operation Slaughterhouse', 1995, Percela and Guldescu, briefly describe the "romantic nationalism" of Liudevit Gaj, Racki or Strossmajer, or the "romanticist nationalism" of the Yugoslav "Exile Committee" as if these factors were of minor significance.

    (2) Omrcanin, in 'Diplomatic & Political History of Croatia', 1972, presents a chronology of key events and documents in Croatia's centuries' long history but he omits 50 years of history between the Hungarian Nagodba in 1868 and the already created Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1918.

    (3) In 'Years of Terror', 1976, Grubusic Ed., omits 19th century political activity in Croatia, the Serbian-Croatian Coalition, or the 'Yugoslav Committee'. Instead, in 'Years of Terror' it is alleged that, "all the various peoples making up this great power (Austrian empire) proclaimed their own independent states ... Versailles peace did not bring about justice for all nations ... they (Paris and London) assisted the Serbs in the annihilation of the young Croat state, in the occupation of Croatia and Slovenia and in setting up a kingdom ... on 1.12.1918. In this way the independence of the Croat people was crushed ..."

    (4) In 'Adriatic Coast of Croatia and the Mediterranean', 1971, Vitez discusses the 19th century out of chronological sequence without mentioning Strossmayer or others. In the immediate pre-WWI period a Yugoslav-slavistic struggle is described, "rised by a part of the Croatian clergy and some members of the Croatian parliament ... (and how) ... "Supilo, together with his colleagues, Dr A Trumbic and sculptor I. Mestrovic, created an idea about the unity of the South Slavic nations into a common state ... (a) ... funny Croat-Serbian coalition inside the Croatian Parliament ... (led by) ... "Svetozar Pribicevic".

    In the book 'In the Defence of Justice', Vitez explains that the Italian's alleged "inherited right" contributed to the censoring of Croatian identity, "...Frequently in Italy is used the name Illyrians to designate the Croats." and that it is in this way that Croats came to be known as Slavs from Illyria rather than Croats from Croatia - Italian influence on one hand, together with the so-called Slavic creation of Cyril & Methodius. (Note: Research shows however that use of the word Illyrian in Rome was supported and encouraged by the Croatian elite.)

    (5) In 'How Yugoslavia was created' on his website, in Chapter 4: 'Summary of A History of Croatian Enemies', Cic concludes, from the writings of pro-Serbian English writers such as Evans in 1877, "from the book 'Illyrian Letters' that the British had conceived this plan hundreds of years earlier ..." (Note: I have underscored 'hundreds' for emphasis.)

    (6) Unlike Croatian authors McAdams does not shy away from offering readers some details about the creation of the first Yugoslav state. This book was welcomed by those interested in justice for Croatian people when it appeared during the Serbian siege on Croatia in the early 1990s. However, it has since come to my attention that McAdams was incorrect to state that, "The Yugoslav National Council of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs was organized in Zagreb on October 15, 1918. This twenty-eight member Council was self-appointed, not elected. ... This is the body so often cited as having 'asked' to join Yugoslavia." (Note: I have underscored 'not elected' for emphasis - in actual fact they had been elected and belonged to the political coalition of Serbs and Croats -- as elected representatives at the Sabor -- within the former Hapsburg territories.)

    McAdams then does go on to say that it was at the Congress of the Croatian Peasant Party, not at the parliament where Peasant Party representatives voted for a "Neutral and Peasant Republic of Croatia" -- so clearly this had nothing to do with the Sabor.

    (7) In 1973 another book appeared in the English language which, it cannot be stressed enough, had a great influence on those of us who relied on information in English at the time. The Australian, L. Shaw in 1973, 'Trial by Slander' gives some details about the activities of the Croatian Peasant Party but also left many important pieces out of the puzzle. (Note: In this way, readers could be forgiven for believing that the proclamation of the 'Peasant Party' in Croatia was the official parliamentary position at the Sabor, and that the proclamation of the 'National Council' was the un-elected position.)


    Bibliography

    Baletic, M., Ed., Croatia 1994, INA-Konzalting, Zagreb, 1994.

    Boban, L., Croatian Borders: 1918-1993, Skolska Knjiga, Zagreb, 1993.

    Bousfield, J., The Rough Guide to Croatia, Penguin Group, 5th Ed. 2010.

    Cerovac, I., Hrvatski Politicki Leksikon, Worldwide, London, 1988.

    Cic, Emil, The History of Croatian Enemies, emilcic.exactpages.com/chapter 4.

    Drapac, V., Constructing Yugoslavia, a Transnational History, Palgrave Macmillan, NY, 2010.

    Franolic, B., An Historical Survey of Literary Croatian, Nouvelles Editions Latines, Paris, 1984.

    Grubisic, S., Years of Terror, HRS.

    Katicic, R. & Novak S.P., Two Thousand Years of Writing in Croatia, Sveucilisna Naklada Liber, Zagreb, 1987.

    Kovacevic, M., 'History', chapter in My Croatia The Land & Its History, DMD, Zagreb, 1994.

    Macek, V., In the Struggle for Freedom, USA, 1957,

    MacMillan, M., Peacemakers: The Paris Conference of 1919 and Its Attempt to End War, London, 2001.

    McAdams, M.C., Croatia Myth and Reality, Croatian Information Service, Arcadia, 1992.

    Omrcanin, I., Diplomatic and Political History of Croatia, Dorrance & Co., Philadelphia, 1972.

    Prcela, J., & Guldescu. S., Operation Slaughterhouse, Dorrance & Co. Pittsburg, 2nd Ed., 1995.

    Rude, G., Revolutionary Europe 1783-1815, Fontana Press, London, 1964.

    Shaw, L., Trial By Slander, Harp Books, Canberra, 1973.

    Sivric, I., Bishop J. G. Strossmayer: New Light on Vatican I, Ziral, Chicago, 1975.

    Vitez, V., Adriatic Coast of Croatia and the Mediterranean, Melbourne, 1971.

    Vitez, V., In the Defence of Justice, 1970.

    Westwood, J. N., Endurance and Endeavour: Russian History 1812-1980, Oxford University Press, London, 2nd Ed. 1981.

 

 

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