CROATIA: INTERNAL HYBRID WARFARE
AGAINST FREEDOM FROM COMMUNISM
Among today’s greatest ironies for countries that have since the fall of the Berlin Wall in late 1989 seceded from communism with the intention to transition into democracy, fought a war of independence such as Croatia that cost thousands of lives and untold damage both physical and mental, rare or non-existent is a Croatian politician in power or government since year 2000 who speaks adeptly about the values of the Homeland War which the Croatian nation must uphold above all else, adhere to and, where needed, perfect with view to serving the Croatian people and their friends who fought for freedom in any way and against communist oppression.
On the contrary, the very existence of Croatian nation that fought during the 1990’s for its absolute right of self-preservation in the harsh winds of brutal Serb and former Yugoslavia Army aggression is under threat and is constantly being undermined, diminished, and attacked. This is inward hybrid war or hybrid war against own national values and identity.
This internal aggression in Croatia is particularly visible and felt deeply painfully by masses through the constant vitriol and aggressive bickering between the President of Croatia (Zoran Milanovic) and Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic and all his government ministers. Plenkovic was embroiled in similar intolerance and lack of collaboration with the former president Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic that was and is essential for any successful nation. The governing Croatian Democratic Union in attempts to fend off increasing criticism of its governance or lack of it, has become sarcastic, cynical, and quick to ridicule any criticism or suggestion from the opposition even if it may be a good one for the nation!
Placing fake news with view to ousting political leaders intent on implementing lustration and prosecuting communist crimes perpetrated by former communist Yugoslavia operatives into the public and political arena appears to have been the tool of choice employed by former communist operatives with view to running down and/or destroy the Croatian national pride and maintain a communist Yugoslavia mentality within independent Croatia at all costs. A vivid example of this was the case of false allegations of fraud and misappropriation against HDZ leader Tomislav Karamarko, who wanted lustration and prosecution of communist crimes when he was Minister of Internal Affairs, and his wife in 2016. Fake news, of course, is a potent tool used in hybrid warfare where, in Croatia, political warfare within the related ‘grey zone’ that has seen and sees a terrible fight to retain communist mentality and communist symbolism as something Croatia should be proud of and to run down Croatian fight for independence from any kind of Yugoslavia during World War II and from communist Yugoslavia during 1990’s.
And so, ever since the 1990’s the world has seen innocent Croatian generals falsely accused of war crimes in the International Criminal Tribunal in the Hague, initiated and set up by no other that Stjepan Mesic and his followers, last president of communist Yugoslavia and leading politician in Croatia including having a stint at the Presidency for two mandates since year 2000. It took falsely accusing Croatia as aggressor in Bosnia and Herzegovina during 1990’s by not other than former communist Yugoslavia operatives. It took the rotten, biased and pro-communist Yugoslavia Croatian judiciary to mount criminal charges, always unfounded from the perspective of defence and war that had to be fought to preserve Croatian lives, and try in courts prominent Croatian defenders and leading war veterans such as Tomislav Mercep, Branimir Glavas, Mirko Norac, Duro Brodarac, Mihajlo Hrastov, the policemen in Lora in Split, while leading members of the Yugoslav Peoples’ Army and rebel Serb forces, the murderous brutal aggressor against, Croatia went unpunished and untried.
The Croatian Security Agency, SOA, in its report to the Government of the state, the Office of the President of Croatia, the Speaker of the Croatian Parliament (report available to all Croatian people in corridors of power), warned of corruption in the Croatian judiciary in 2016 and identified 20 judges by name as representing a threat to the Croatian national security. But to this day, these judges have not been dismissed; they still wield “justice” in a country whose government vows continuously and repeatedly to be fighting corruption! What does that tell us?
The governments and the country’s Presidents have had their mouths full of praise for the Croatian diaspora and its huge importance to the success of Croatia as an independent state; incessantly calling the diaspora to return! And yet there has not since year 2000 been a single plenary debate in the Croatian Parliament on the diaspora and how to best harness its knowledge and material wealth for the good of all Croatians. On the contrary the parliamentary seats for the diaspora have been cut from 12 to 3! Lately, there are several government-supported boastings about increased number of citizenship applications and expat returns under the current HDZ government. The problem with these boastings is that they omit to compare with numbers from 1980’s and 1990’s when many more returned to Croatia from the diaspora than these days. But, then again, mass disinformation or misinformation or biased information campaigns (and government in Croatia controls the mainstream media) that are aimed as showing a government in a brighter light than what it is or what it truly deserves are a characteristic found in hybrid warfare.
It has been obvious for many years that the goal of both the Croatian government and the office of the President has been and is to cancel the so-called of the Homeland War and to preserve the power borne in communist Yugoslavia that enabled criminal conversion and privatisation in Croatia post break up of communist Yugoslav. Cheap acquisitions of companies and housing were the order of the day when former communists and their friends became wealthy overnight; major banks were sold to foreign countries under non-transparent and suspicious circumstances; corruption and nepotism continued defining Croatia as they did communist Yugoslavia.
Although the start of this internal aggression took place in wartime circumstances, particularly from around mid-1992 when Stjepan Mesic visibly began abusing his position of power in plots to overthrow President Franjo Tudjman and weaken Croatian resolve for independence from communist Yugoslavia, when the will of the people was incredibly strong for an independent Croatia and Mesic consequently ended up deposed from the position of Speaker of the Parliament in 1994, the true dimension of that hybrid war and grey zone markings were revealed after the change of government in early 2000. The Socialist Democratic Party/SDP, former League of Communists of Croatia, won government and Stjepan Mesic, by now within his own new political party unconvincingly called Croatian Independent Democrats (HNS), won the Presidency of the country. This was a lethal combination that would see the Croatia’s fight for independence, its defence from Serb and Yugoslav aggression, prostituted and betrayed with false accusations, political twisting of facts to dangerous levels for individual veteran life and the whole nation and a proliferation of communist mentality and symbols assaulting the intellect of even most common folk let alone intellectuals and multitudes that suffered under communism. Subsequently, the Croatian Democratic Union Party/HDZ government under Ivo Sadaner and Jadranka Kosor, Stjepan Mesic’s puppets and corrupt communist players to the core, intensified this internal aggression which is still so visible and felt under today’s Andrej Plenkovic HDZ Croatian government.
This persistent internal aggression has gained so much momentum in the past decade, when SDP and HDZ government both sought coalition with the Serb aggressor aligned SDSS political party in Croatia, neglecting purposefully values of the Homeland War, apparently in favour of a reconciliation between aggressor Serbs and victim Croats. The most recent example of this shocking government-led hybrid warfare against the values and justice of the Homeland War was the 18 November 2022 Prime Minister Plenkovic’s defiant visit to Skabrnja Massacre commemoration, together with Greater Serbia’s SDSS (Independemt Democratic Serb Party) Deputy Prime Minister Anja Simpraga. Skabranja’s defense commander during the Serb massacre of Croat civilians and prisoners of war, Marko Miljanic, said as Croatian veterans present at the commemoration turned their backs to Plenkovic and Simpgraga, “We did not fight for this”. Internal aggression is conducted on multiple fronts and in a coordinated institutional and extra-institutional manner.
The forced reconciliation without justice for the victims of the Serb aggression that the Croatian government is attempting to achieve is simply not possible nor will it ever be achieved. Justice must be seen to be done and in Croatia with such governments of communist mentality, with fraternising in government with the Croatian peoples’ and national independence enemies, with the now long-standing aggressive moves to equate victim with the aggressor, Croatia is still on a war path for its dignity, for justice, for truth and independence from Yugoslavia. It is meaningless for Simpraga having condemned the Serb perpetrators of Skabrnja massacres, for her to keep saying “We need to move forward, towards peace, tolerance and coexistence of Croats and Serbs” when she does nothing to bring the perpetrators to justice; when she laments over having to flee Croatia as a child in August 1995 without stating that Croats did not make Serbs flee but guilt for their own crimes prior to 1995 Operation Storm that liberated the part of Croatia her kin had ethnically cleansed of Croats and occupied since 1991. Plenkovic, who was relatively unknown to the Croatian public when thrust into HDZ power in 2016, under the influence and control of the leader of the Greater Serbian fifth column, SDSS’s Milorad Pupovac, appears the main proponent of the damaging thesis that a civil war was fought in Croatia during 1990’s as Serb aggression occurred, and not that Croatia was a victim of Greater Serbian aggression by Belgrade! They undermine even the International Criminal Tribunal’s thorough investigation and conclusion that it was an international conflict with Serbia (servant of Yugoslavia) as aggressor. If it was considered a civil war then no Hague prosecutions could have proceeded under the standing laws and Geneva conventions etc.
The HDZ government will often accuse those rightfully criticising them as leading hybrid warfare against Croatia when in fact it is the government who is quite guilty of hybrid warfare. And it uses not the Croatian Serbs who fought alongside Croats to defend Croatia from Serb aggression in 1990’s but those aligned and related to the Serbs who were the aggressors! Hence, it has almost become necessary to expose the intentions of this internal aggression daily. Regretfully, such exposures do not reach the general public, because the main mainstream television and radio public service is under the strict control of the ruling Croatian-Serbian coalition. We often come across praises for communist Yugoslavia in this mainstream, produced with Croatian taxpayers’ money, but not for the victorious Homeland War that ensured Croatia’s independence. Time for some serious corrective actions when it comes to the smothered Homeland War values in the political and daily life fields in Croatia.
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