DECEMBER 1, 1918
This December 1, one hundred and four years ago, Prince Regent Alexander of Serbia proclaimed the new Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, backed by an ill-conceived and self-appointed authority of the so called National Council of the Slovenes (Slovenci), Croats (Hrvati) and Serbs (Srbi) (SHS), a conglomerate of non-elected individuals.
The coming into being of this new political entity, the SHS, was never voted for by the Croatian people, nor was this decision ratified at any time and in any form by the Croatian Parliament. Stjepan Radic, a leader of the Croatian Peasant Party, voiced the Croatian opposition:
Radic in Sisak, 1927 Radic in Dubrovnik, 1927
Magnificent assembly of HSS (Hrvatska seljačka stranka, i.e., Croatian Peasant Party) at the main square in Subotica, 17th January 1926, where more than 25,000 people participated. Photo published in Božićnica 1927.
Croatian banknote of 200 HRK (Hrvatska kuna / Croatian kuna), with the portrait of Stjepan Radic.
Stjepan Radic 1871 - 1928
Gentlemen, the most terrible thing, the greatest sin, and the greatest political mistake is committed in an act such as yours, for you place our people before the fait accompli of a policy decided upon by a selected few from the upper crust of society without and against the will of the people. If I cannot convince you of the truth of this statement, then may God grant that you live long enough- and that need not be too long- to learn from first-hand experience how the Croatian people will buck its rebellion against this disregard for human dignity and its republican principles, throwing you out of the saddle just as you were about to believe that you were sitting firmly on it. Long live the Republic; long live Croatia.
- Radic declined to lead a delegation to go to Belgrade and proclaim the
In 1928, Radic was assassinated in the Belgrade Parliament by a Serbian parliamentarian, Punisa Racic. It was no coincidence that in 1928, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Slovene Reverend Anton Korošec, “gave” a gun to Puniša Račić for the assassination of the champions of the Croatian Peasant Party in the Belgrade National Assembly. Active priest, Anton Korošec, was vice-president in the first SHS government, minister of the interior from 1924 to 1927, then minister again in 1929, a man of the regime's greatest trust. His political actions were important factors in the Serbian-Slovenian repression of Croats and served as the cornerstone of Slovenian hostility towards Croatia.
- On 6th January, 1929, King Alexander proclaimed a dictatorship under the new name, Kingdom of Yugoslavia.
- In April 1941, Kingdom of Yugoslavia ceased to exist.
- Croatia declared its independence the same month of the same year.
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