BELIBURG – NAJVEĆA TRAGEDIJA HRVATSKOG NARODA : Usmena povijest o bleiburškoj tragediji pretočena u pisanu

Knjiga Od Bleiburga do Ljubuškog – svjedočenja preživjelih Ante Čuvala u Ljubuškom 9. svibnja uz autora predstavili su mr. sc. Ante Paponja i mr. sc. Radoslav Dodig, a nazočio je biskup msgr Ratko Perić. Donosimo osvrt Radoslava Dodiga i tekst zahvale autora Ante Čuvala. (Ispravak: predstavljanje je bilo 8. svibnja).
 
Među ovim koricama knjige doktora Ante Čuvala pohranjene su mnoge sudbine, protkane krvlju, znojem, bolom, patnjom, ljudskom surovošću, neizvjesnošću, ali i borbom za preživljavanjem i nadanjima za mirom i povratkom kućama. Prihvatio sam se predstavljanja knjige iz dvaju razloga. Prvo što poznajem njezina auktora dr. Čuvala kao povjesničara i humanista prvoga reda, cijeneći njegove napore da usmenu povijest naših stradalnika predoči u pisanu povijest. Druga je što je moj otac Grgo Dodig iz Prologa (umro 2003.) preživio križni put. U više navrata propovijedao mi je doživljaje iz svoje životne kalvarije 1945. Nažalost, nisam ih bilježio jer sam se tada, kao i sada, bavio dalekom prošlošću naših predaka, koju tisuću-dvije godina unatrag, misleći bit će vremena pa ću to snimiti i pribilježiti na papir. Ipak, brza kosa naše sestre smrti pokosi brzo staro, a katkad i mlado žito. No ostale su mi u sjećanju neke slike koje mi je opisao, pune surovosti i gole borbe za opstanak, kakve se nalaze i u ovoj knjizi.
Knjiga ima tri dijela. Prvi dio su “Svjedočenja preživjelih” (3-420 str.), poredanih abecednim redom, njih 64 sudionika. Nakon toga slijede “Svjedočenja iz druge ruke” (str. 422-469), gdje je prikazana 21 ljudska sudbina. Drugi dio knjige obuhvaćaju tabele (472-592. str.). Treći dio su “Dokumenti”  (str. 594-621.). Na kraju su Kazala imena (605-618), Popis mjesta kroz koja su prošli ili boravili sudionici Križnoga puta (str. 619-621), Zahvala (str. 623) onima koji su pomogli u pripremi knjige i na unutarnjim koricama zemljovid “Kolone smrti – najvažnijih križnih putova”, koji je preuzet iz knjige Stanislava Vukorepa, “Preživjeli svjedoče”, Zagreb, 2005.
Toponim Bleiburg, slovenski Pliberk, koruški gradić u Austriji od kojih 4.000 duša, potječe od njemačkoga blei, olovo, i burg, zamak, tvrđava, jer je blizu bio rudnik olova. I upravo je Bleiburg, Olovni grad, postao simbolom “olovnih vremena” za sve protivnike i neistomišljenike partizanske vlasti. Bez obzira što je na Bleiburškom polju i u okolici stradao manji dio Hrvata (i drugih naroda), Bleiburg je postao metaforom svih hrvatskih stradanja od crvene vlasti krajem II. Svjetskoga rata i poraća (Bleiburški pokolj, Bleiburška tragedija). Hrvatska iseljenička literatura razdoblje, kada su mnogi zarobljeni Hrvati ubijeni na marševima kroz Jugoslaviju i u zarobljeničkim logorima, nazvala je “Križni put”. O tome se u dijaspori pisalo i govorilo (V. Nikolić, Bleiburška tragedija hrvatskoga naroda, München, 1976.), u Jugoslaviji to je bila tabu-tema. Na europskoj razini buru je uzvitlao Nikolaj Tolstoj koji je 1986. objavio knjigu The Minister and the Massacres (Ministar i pokolji), koja je bila u međuvremenu povučena, s dugim sudskim procesom. Objavljena je u prijevodu na hrvatski 1991. Knjiga Marka Grčića i drugih: Otvoreni dossier: Bleiburg, Zagreb: 1990, de facto prva je knjiga u Hrvatskoj koja je javno progovorila o toj temi. Pripremila ju je skupina novinara nakon serije intervjua sa sudionicima Križnoga puta, koji su prethodno bili objavljeni u novinama. Slijedile su knjige Josipa Jurčevića, Zvonimira Duspera, Miljenka Perića, Joze Marevića, kao i sjećanja sudionika, kao što je spomenuta knjiga Stanislava Vukorepa.
Zabilježena sjećanja preživjelih Ljubušaka vrlo su dojmljiva, puna napornih ratnih slika, opasnosti, uhićenja, namještenih optužnica, podmetanja, tortura, pokušaja nagovora lažnih svjedočenja i pritisaka svake vrste. Na križnom putu bilo je i djece. Ljuba Biško iz Vitine tako se 1945. našla na maršu smrti s majkom i teko rođenom sestrom u svojoj sedmoj godini. Zapamtila je vrlo potresne slike – čovjeka koji jede uginula konja, nesretnika koji sebi reže grkljan ili majku koja s djetetom skače u rijeku, ne bi li skratila patnje. Ili Nada Tomić iz Humca rođena 1939. Don Aleksandar Boras kazuje kako su ih partizani u iscrpljujućem maršu čak noću tjerali u trk. Bilo ih je koji su trčali i spavali. “Nisam znao da je to moguće ali stvarno smo marširali, ponekad trčali i spavali. Neki su halucinirali”, pripovijeda don Aleksandar. Drago Bradvica iz Veljaka svjedoči da je bio toliko mučen tjelesno i psihički da ga u Mostaru u Sjevernom logoru rođena majka i sestra nisu prepoznale. U dvadesetoj godini bio je težak tek nešto više od trideset kilograma. Slično se dogodilo Ivanu Iki Nižiću, kojega je rođeni otac na povratku pred kućom pitao “Tko si ti”, misleći da je kakav prosjak. Bilo je rijetkih momaka iz marša smrti koji su se spasili bijegom iz kolone, kao što je bio Vlado Matijašević iz Vašarovića. U knjizi ima svjedočenja koja su male literarne drame, pune događaja i neizvjesnosti, poput sudbine Vladimira Rose iz Vitine.
            Svjedočenja iz druge ruke, kako se zove jedno poglavlje u knjizi, isto tako su opisi mnogih životnih drama krajem II. svjetskoga rata i poraća, koja pripovijedaju supruge, sinovi i rodbina stradalnika. Uz životni put Stanka Čotića iz Lisica, prema kazivanju supruge Anice, nalazi se fotografija aluminijske vojničke zdjele s urezanim nadnevcima i mjestima u kojima je Stanko boravio tijekom Križnoga puta – 15. svibnja 1945. Maribor, pa Osijek, Vinkovci, Šid, Zemun, Pančevo itd., da bi kući stigao u studenom 1945.
Drugi dio knjige donosi tabelarne popise sudionika Križnoga puta i stradalnika iz II. Svjetskoga rata i poraća za svako mjesto u ljubuškoj općini. Tabele sadržavaju imena ljudi koji su preživjeli Križni put, koji su smrtno stradali na Križnome putu i onih koji su smrtno nastradali tijekom rata i u poraću, a nisu bili na Križnome putu. Prema prikupljenim podacima na Križnome putu bile su 2.172 osobe iz općine Ljubuški, smrtno ih je stradalo 1249, 923-je se vratilo kući, a 17 je umrlo od posljedica puta. Ako ovome dodamo 1.202 žrtve nastradale u ratu i poraću, a koje nisu bile na Križnom putu, ukupan broj smrtno stradalih Ljubušaka je 2.469 osoba, što je činilo 10 posto ukupna broja stanovništva općine. Radilo se o ljudima u punoj životnoj snazi, u fertilnoj dobi, tako da je to strahovit i nenadoknadiv gubitak za Ljubuški. Koliko sam danas na Radio-Ljubuškome čuo, dr. Ante Čuvalo rekao je kako je u odnosu na broj predratnih stanovnika najviše stradalih iz Teskere i Pregrađa. Ove crne statistike mogu poslužiti sociolozima i demografima kao korisno štivo u daljnjim proučavanjima, ali nećemo pretjerati ako kažemo da su ljubuški Hrvati u Drugom svjetskom ratu i nakon njega izgubili demografsku srčiku i bili stigmatizirani kao ustaše i zločinci.
U trećem dijelu priloženi su zanimljivi dokumenti sudionika Križnoga puta, od vojnih        knjižica do presuda vojnih sudova i nekoliko rukopisnih zapisa ljubuških stradalnika.
Knjiga dr. Ante Čuvala dragocjeno je povijesno i dokumentarno djelo, zapis o tragičnim ljudskim sudbinama sredinom dvadesetoga stoljeća, tu pred našim vratima. Učinjeno je u zadnji trenutak kada se preživjeli križari mogu gotovo izbrojiti na prste. Možda mi sami, potomci naših ratnih i poratnih stradalnika, bilo prve ili druge generacije, trebamo okriviti sami sebe zašto to nismo uradili u proteklih – evo gotovo sedamdeset godina. Zato našemu učenom Anti iz Proboja treba odati veliko priznanje za golem trud i istraživački napor, koji je pokazao na pripremi i objavi knjige. Na kraju neka mi bude slobodno poigrati se glagolom čuvati: Dr. Čuvalo očuvao je od zaborava komad ljubuške povijesti. Neka ga čuva dragi Bog!

Radoslav Dodig

Narod ne zaboravlja i ne šuti

 
Pozdravljam oca biskupa Perića i sve pristune, posebice vas koji ste preživjeli Križni put, ovo je vaša knjiga! Ja sam samo vaše “žito” povezao i poredao u snopove!
Ispričavam se za sve moguće pogriješke i propuste! Obično svaki autor zapazi neke pogriješke kad je knjiga već objelodanjena. Tako sam i ja već uočio neke (ipak sitnije) propust pa isprika onima kojih se to tiče!
Ovdje ću prvo natuknuti jednu “uputu” mladim čitateljima a potom nekoliko misli.
Kad budete čitali razna iskaze vjerujem da će vaša pozornost biti na osobi čije svjedočenje u tom trenutku čitate, i tako treba biti, ali nemojte izugiti iz vida da se neki strašni trenuci ponavljaju u više iskaza što znači da se može pratiti koje situacije su bile najsmrtonosnije i koji logori najopasniji. Na primjer, oni koji su iz nemoglosti zaostajali iza kolone bili su bez milosti ubijani. Čak njihovi “vodiči” više puta su im govorili, ako ste iznemogli pričekajte i naići će kola koja će vas povesti. Ali, nisu stizala kola nego smrt! Puno ih je ubijeno radi kapi vode! Svaki iskorak iz kolone značio je smrt! Ulazi u logore, svi tjesnaci, svi mostovi…., gdje god je kolona prolazila kroz kakv uži prolaz s obe strane su nemilice tukli koga su god dohvatili. Gdje su god prolazili kroz sela naseljena srpskim pučanstvom masa je, kao naručena, izlazila tući zarobljenike svim i svačim. Mnogi su tako ubijeni ili i danas, ako su živi, osjećaju posljedice tih zlostavljanja. Velk broj ljudi je nastradao u rupama za nuždu, upadali su ili su živi ubacivani u nje. Od logora se najviše “sjećaju” Maribora, Siska, Požege, Pančeva…, a u Šidu su ih utjerali, doslovce ugurali, u neku rupetinu iz koje je vađena zemlja i kad preživjeli o tome govore kao da i danas osjećaju tjeskobu, kalustrofobiju, ljetnu žegu, znoj i ponajviše žeđu! Mora da su to bile strašne muke dok su se tako duboko usjekle u sjećanja mnogih.
A sada jedno dvije usputne misli. Gledajući nedavno večernje vijesti, vidim predsjednik RH dr. Ivo Josipović drži govor u Podgori i među ostalim reče, “…povijest je takva kakva je bila; ona je ta koja govori što je bilo dobro a što je bilo zlo”! Kad ovo čuh kao da me netko šilom ubode! Pomislih, moj Predsjedniče i profeosre, barem bi ti trebao znati da povijest ne sudi; ona ne odlučuje što je doboro a što zlo. Sud donose ljudi a ne povijest! U našem slučajevima (a i kod mnogih drugih) Centralni komitet, partija i idologija je “govorila” što je bilo dobro a što zlo! Čini mi se da i dans bi “partija” i njezini nasljednici htjela suditi, pa možda i osuđivati, a neki povjesničari bi radije sudili nego prosuđivali! Sve u ime povijesti!
Drugo, svi diktatori, sve totalitarne idoligje i svi moćnici ovog svijeta kroz cijelu ljutsku povijest su htjeli da narod zaboravi i šuti. Istina je da svijet, masu, nije baš teško naučiti šutjeti. Ljudi zašute iz više razloga, a ponajivše iz sebičnosti, straha, zasljepljenosti…. Ali narod kao cjelina ne zaboravlja tako olako. Prije ili kasnije to naše kolektivno pamćenje izbije na vidjelo. Čim se pruži prilika, čim dođe trenutak slobode, ljudi će progovoriti. Jugo-komunisti su svim naporima nastojali da se Bleiburg i Križni put zaborave, da se svi njihovi zločini zaborave! I šutnju su nametnuli. Očito je da bi i danas ne samo htjeli da se šuti nego i dalje zločince veliča. Ali došlo je vrijeme i da kamen progovori!. Ova će knjiga, nadam se, barem malo doprinjet razbijanju hrvatske šutje i sačuvati od zaborava patnje ljudi koji su preživjeli strašne muke Križnog puta.
Ništa u životu nisam radio niti radim iz mržnje, nego iz ljubavi. Tako je i ova knjiga nastala iz ljubavi prema ljudima koje vidimo večeras među nama, kao i prema onima koji se nisu nikad s Križnog puta vratili doma, uključujući i mog oca koji je kao civil stigao do zloglasne Ćelovine u Mostaru i tu mu se gubi trag. Ali, knjiga je ponajviše pisana iz ljubavi za istinu jer jedino istina oslobađa; ona liječi rane žrtava i počinitelja, kao i njihovih potomaka.
Na kraju, na prvoj stranici jednog internetskog portala koji se bavi rodoslovljem stoji i slijedeće: “Ovdje počinje vaša priča!” Ja bih rekao vama, posebice mladima, ova knjiga sadrži ne samo priče naših očeva i baka, ovo je i moja i vaša priča. Čitajte ove mučne iskaze i upoznat ćete i dio vaše osobne priče; vaše i naše zajedničke hrvatske povijesti.
Ante Čuvalo

slovo

Godina xx, Broj 998, 6. lipnja 2014., st. 26
 

bli

Ljubuški – Chicago 2014., str. 623

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Tenth Anniversary of Dayton

TENTH ANNIVERSARY OF DAYTON

Ante Čuvalo – Chicago

Hrvatska revijaYear V/2005, No 4, pp. 49-53.

In Place of an Introduction

My eldest brother Vlatko lives in Proboj near Ljubuški, Bosnia and Herzegovina, where I was born. His children and grandchildren are an offshoot of a tree-of-old that set its roots centuries ago. As a Croatian and a Catholic, my brother “enjoyed” all the “blessings” (including imprisonment) that were part and parcel of Yugoslavia, communism, the recent war in Bosnia-Herzegovina , and the Dayton Accords. His is a typical Croatian family that lived and survived by working, praying, looking after its own, and respecting others, including those who were different from them. His wish is to continue to live in that manner but in freedom and justice, and with a sense of security that rings true.

As it was for the majority of Croatians in Bosnia-Herzegovina who lived under the previous regimes, it was clear to him who was master over him. Not only was he without rights, but as a Croat he was “marked” as an enemy of the state even prior to his birth. True, under Dayton’s Bosnia-Herzegovina he is not spied on or bugged; he is free to sing any patriotic song he wishes and can say what he will; he moves about freely; he associates with whom he pleases and votes for whom he wishes. Seemingly, all appears to be in order. Although ten years have passed since the sound of guns has ceased in that land, my brother does not feel that he is living a “normal” life nor does he experience Bosnia and Herzegovina as a “normal” state. He is “free,” he lives in a “democracy,” yet he is very much aware that all that takes place in that land which is fateful and vital does so in his name (in the name of the people)—but really without him, without the concrete person, without the citizen. What is more, as a Croat he is suspected of being a disloyal citizen of his internationally recognized country.

Even those who supposedly represent him as a Croat and those who wish to represent him as no more than an “undefined” citizen, as well as those who arrived from the “civilized” part of the world and who assumed the fate of Bosnia-Herzegovina in their hands, have set up such a system of governance that my brother, and all who are like him, have no connection to their various “processes,” economic programs, or political, social, cultural and educational constructs and experiments. They create a country along with its political, economic, and cultural constructs for him, his children and grandchildren, but without his participation and at his expense. It is not only the politicians who do not care what my brother and the ordinary mortals think: all those “missionaries” of various persuasions as well as those well-paid “experts” for the “Bosnian question” care little as well. They look to their own interests, push their own ideologies, or test their latest socio-political theories on this land and its peoples that remain foreign to them. They build from the top down; they build “their” Bosnia-Herzegovina. The consequences of all of this are quite evident for all to see. Those who survived and remained at home eke out a living while the young long to escape wherever. People are saturated with the feeling of uncertainty, hopelessness, and even fear because they cannot even begin to fathom what shape their country will take in the future or what place someone like my brother, his children and grandchildren, and the Croat people in general, will have in their native land.

The causes for such a state of being are multi-layered and complex. However, one of the key causes is the Dayton Accords. Instead of having established the basis for a stable and normal course of life for all the citizens of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Accords made a firm and just constitutional structure for the country impossible. If this course of action continues, both the people and the country will float aimlessly toward yet another catastrophe—one that will once again open the door to yet another “process” of “solving Bosnian question.”

Dayton as Millstone

The Dayton Accords, that is, its signatories, stopped the war in progress; however, they made possible the continuation of that war in a different manner. The portion of the Accords that dealt with military questions was clearly defined. The international military force (IFOR, and its successor forces) was guaranteed the necessary military might and legal power to carry out the agreed-to mission. They succeeded in that task. To the joy and amazement of many, the sound of weaponry was silenced—all because it was clear to everyone what the military demands were and because IFOR acted decisively.

On the other hand, the portion of the Accords that dealt with constitutional questions and civil life was and continues to be a stone around the neck of Bosnia-Herzegovina. A country with three officially recognized constituent peoples was divided into two proportional entities. Out of those entities, an almost “pure” ethnic Serbian Republic (RS) was created, while the other was Federation of Bosniacs/Muslims and Croats with ten cantons. The area of Brcko became a self-contained republic of sorts, while Mostar was placed under the direct administration of Europe. Meanwhile, Bosnia and Herzegovina—a country of 14 constitutions, 14 governments, and 180 ministers—became (and remains) a huge, unresolved question. Clearly, it is not spelled-out as to whether the Dayton Accords were the start of a better future or the beginning of the end for Bosnia-Herzegovina. It is in such a contradiction that the Bosnian “straight jacket” (as a former international official to Bosnia-Herzegovina called it) was fashioned.

Furthermore, all the burning questions such as the return of refugee and those forced from their homes, the missing, war criminals, the organization and holding of elections, possible changes to the Constitution, human rights, minority rights, the judiciary, the school system, banking institutions, economic renewal, the formation of a new police force, the safe-guarding of the nation’s borders, etc. was given over to various international organizations. These organizations neither were given clearly defined authority or power. Even less, they do not have the will to resolve such questions openly, clearly, or justly. The International High Commissioner, along with a massive and highly paid bureaucracy, was appointed to coordinate the execution of the Dayton Accords—that is, to rule over Bosnia-Herzegovina as a Sovereign who holds all authority in his hands while not being held responsible to answer to anyone for his (mis)deeds.

Colonialism in the Name of Freedom

Not all that long ago, the British, French, and other western European brands of colonialism were justified as being a part of a civilizing mission. The leading liberal intellectuals of the time were busily engaged not only in promoting the ideas of freedom within their own lands but also in supporting the spread of a liberal brand of colonialism. Thus, for example, we have the well-known de Tocqueville advocating personal freedoms while at the same time justifying the French occupation of Algeria.

However, times change and so does colonialism. Today’s brand of colonialism is far more polite and subtle. Today, it is not “well-bred” to simply occupy and assume rule over someone else’s land. Aside from that, it is too expensive to do so and can be dangerous. Today, an indirect form of colonialism is imposed. True, it tends to be a bit more complicated than in the past, but it is packaged more nicely; it is, therefore, more easily “sold” to the world at large, and tends to be more remunerative than in the past. Furthermore, today’s colonialism is multi-centered and infuses itself through international markets, through multi-national corporations, bilateral and multi-lateral economic agreements, as well as through global organizations and institutions. Its tentacles also spread through various funds, investments, banks, media domination, educational and cultural institutions, and through various self-serving organizations for human, minority and even animal rights groups, as well as through international courts.

Post-communist “transitional” countries and those of the Third world are most favorable and fertile sites for this brand of neo-liberal colonialism—one that does not hesitate to make use of highly non-liberal methods so as to realize a society that is not democratic but rather one that is—to be politically correct—“a civil and open society.” The two, however, are not the same. In a democratic society the people have (or are supposed to have) the fate of their nation in their own hands, while in an “open” neo-colonial society the sovereignty of the people “eludes” the voice of the people while someone else slowly implements “politically correct” policies. Even peoples in countries that are traditionally considered to be powerful nations are beginning to come to grips with the fact of globalism and multi-centered colonialism that tends to undermine their civic power, their jobs, their economic stability, and imposes upon them an intellectual and ideological obedience along with an absolutistic global relativism of all values.

The old and new forms of colonialism are interwoven in war-torn Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is a sovereign country, a member of the UN, but it is without any real sovereignty. The country is really ruled by Brussels through the self-elected Peace Implementation Council (PIC) and the High Commissioner. They, and all others who involve themselves in the fate of Bosnia-Herzegovina clearly serve their own interests and have their own plans for its future. Regular elections are held in the land. The people are free to vote for those who have received the imprimatur of the High Commissioner. The politicians elected thus become the middle layer between the people and the international rulers in the country. Their formal legitimacy is derived from the people who elected them, but this is a farce: their role depends entirely on the political will of the High Commissioner and those who appointed him—not on the people who elected them.

Besides the absolutistic power of the High Commissioner, the fate of Bosnia-Herzegovina is put in the hand of an entire witches’-brew of every possible sort of “well-wishers,” and “benefactors,” along with an army of “experts” whose only desire is to “civilize” Bosnia-Herzegovina and to make of her something that she is not—not to mention those who “fish” in murky waters. Contradictions of the Dayton Accords serve well everyone except those who would want Bosnia-Herzegovina to move in the direction of political, social, and economic stability—in other words, to become a country where one can live “normally” and freely.

Circling or Dividing of the Bosnian-Herzegovinan Triangle

In as much as the international power brokers did not intend to assure a true peace in a multi-national Bosnia-Herzegovina, nor to put in place a constitutional basis for its three constituent peoples to commonly build a better future for themselves, they in fact left an opening for the war to continue without gunfire. The battle for various political outcomes in Bosnia-Herzegovina—as well as in its neighborhood—continues. We will only mention the most important “visions” that serve as the basis of the battle over Bosnia and Herzegovina of tomorrow.

We will begin with the Serbs since their national dream is most clear. Even though the leaders of the Bosnian-Herzegovinian Serbs at the time (1995) bitterly opposed the Dayton Accords—because they sought much more—today, all Serb political, social, and religious forces within the RS, (Republika Srpska), in Serbia proper, and in the Serbian diaspora firmly stand behind the Dayton Accords—that is, behind an “ethnically pure” RS. According to their interpretation of the Accords, Dayton opened the door to the process of eventual secession of the RS from the remaining parts of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the eventual unification with Serbia proper. Therefore, the Republika Srpska is not their final goal: it serves as the key to Serbia’s further “incursion to the West,” and to the realization (sooner or later) of its dream of a Greater Serbia wherein it will ultimately find and incorporate the “temporarily lost” Serbian parts of the Republic of Croatia. The possibility of a “tri-entitized,” a cantonized or regionalized Bosnia-Herzegovina would bring into question the intended historical role of the RS. For this reason Dayton’s Bosnia-Herzegovina and the RS within it (for now, at least)—even though it presently finds itself in an unenviable position in every regard—is the only choice. The Serbian logic continues to unfold: all must be endured so as to realize the centuries-old dream of a Greater Serbia which is the ideal of its “heavenly people.” Hence the Serbs are (for the present) the most zealous guardians of Dayton’s Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The dreams for Bosnia-Herzegovina’s future as envisioned by the political, cultural, and religious elite among the Bosniacs are, at first glance, fanciful and multi-faceted. It is not, however, difficult to reduce them to two basic tendencies. One group would wish to create a unitary Bosnia—(the majority find Herzegovina to be a major hindrance to their nation-building project)—one wherein the Bosniacs/Muslems, because they are the population’s majority, would play the role of guardians of the state. Bosnia (and Herzegovina) would become a mini-Yugoslavia. Bosnianism would replace Yugoslavism, the Bosniacs would assume the role of yesterday’s Serbs, and a Muslem/Bosniac Sarajevo would replace Serbian Belgrade. This national program, among other things, is clearly stated by the designation of the language as “Bosnian” as opposed to let us say Bosniac or even Bosnian-Herzegovinian language.

The alternative to the first model is the acceptance of the country’s division into two entities as imposed by Dayton. Eventually, however, the Bosniac-Croat Federation would be transformed into a Bosniac/Muslim Republic: the thought is that eventually the Croats as the minority partner within the Federation would die off by various means or else would simply become an ethnic minority. In this manner the mini-Greater Bosniac dream would come to be realized while at the same time the Bosniac/Moslem element in the RS would increase, their thought being that time is on their side. After all, even according to God’s universal plan Islam is to prevail. It would seem that the ruling Bosniac elite around the Party of Democratic Action (SDA) that signed the Dayton Accords considered the mini Greater-Bosniac dream more realistic for the moment and thus played (and continue to play) to the Serbian card more so than to a partnership with the Croats in a united effort to defeat the realization of a Greater Serbia. While the adherents of this view consider such action as a wise course of political realism, there are other forces among the Bosniacs that condemn the leadership of the SDA as being Serbophiles who have brought Bosnia-Herzegovina to the edge of destruction.

Though all the important Bosniac political, civil, and religious forces within Bosnia-Herzegovina might perhaps be amenable to some sort of non-ethnic regionalism, they all reject a tri-national Bosnia-Herzegovina in which its three peoples would be guaranteed the same and equal rights and responsibilities in a united country. All Bosniac political groupings swear to a “civil” and multi-ethnic Bosnia (or perhaps some Bosnia-Herzegovina); however, their idea of a “civil” and “multi-ethnic” Bosnia is little more than a shiny candy wrapper covering the ideology that espouses a Greater-Bosniacism, wherein Bosniacism, or perhaps Bosnianism, as the other face of that same ideology, would be accepted (sooner or later) as the national identity of all its citizens. In such manner, the traditional Bosnia-Herzegovina would transmogrify into a multi-ethnic state in which, of course, the Bosniacs would be the “basic people” as well as the guardians of the state. However, where there are “basic people” there are also “non-basic people” and where there are “guardians” of the country there must also be those who are to be “guarded” against!

It is a reality that the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina have no fundamental vision for its future. Through the last fifteen years or so, there were various dreams as well as conscious or subconscious deceptions or perhaps self-delusions about a division of Bosnia-Herzegovina. They failed to grasp that the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina during the war were simply one of the tactical cards played by the officialdom in Zagreb in defense of the Republic of Croatia. This is precisely why the Croat Republic of Herceg-Bosna was so easily written off. The Republic of Croatia made possible the Dayton Accords through its military action designated as “Oluja.” It signed the Accords not because of the Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but rather because of the interests of the Republic of Croatia—or so it seemed at the time.

Judging by what one can hear or read concerning the various current visions for the Bosnia-Herzegovina of tomorrow, one can, nonetheless, find a common denominator among the Croats. They are in favor of changes in the Dayton Accords. They seek a Bosnia-Herzegovina that will assure Croats lasting civil and national rights and as well as full equality. They are less concerned as to what constitutional means might achieve their goal, although, there is much talk about a possible third entity or else cantonization od the country, similar to the Swiss constitutional model. Certainly, there are those—chiefly in Herzegovina—that would like to see the dissolution of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the incorporation of their villages within the Republic of Croatia. However, for the majority, a predominant and realistic concern for the preservation of their centuries-old hearth and home is at play rather than some sort of dream of a Greater Croatia at the expense of Bosnia-Herzegovina. It is as important to mention that no great interest exists within Republic of Croatia for the present conditions in Bosnia-Herzegovina, much less interest in usurpation of some of its parts.

One must point out that along with the Bosniac point of view, there are other groups within the land that advocate a “civil” Bosnia-Herzegovina. They too are in favor of changes to the Dayton Accords; however, they reject in advance all solutions that take into account any national factors. As for them, they do not acknowledge any collective rights but only individual rights. The fundamental principle, as far as they are concerned is the one that states: one person, one vote. They are in favor of a Bosnia (and Herzegovina) in which the notion of nation and state are identical. They say that their model is the multi-ethnic American model; however, in essence they have remained true to the old Yugoslav myth of “brotherhood and unity,”—a myth wherein they were at least some sort of elite class. They also wish to retain their status as the cream of Bosnian-Herzegovinian society in the name of the ethno-religious group that they happen to belong to.

There are two important forces within international circles who oppose a traditional Bosnia and Herzegovina. One group is in a hurry to “develop” a sense of Bosnian national identity among the people. Their reasoning is that by doing so they will cleanse individuals and groups from their roots and thereby make possible a class of “pure citizens.” Despite so many bloody proofs that this sort of forced societal construct does not solve—but rather worsens—relations between individuals and peoples, they, nonetheless, favor a Bosnia (and Herzegovina) that would become a melting pot of peoples. Bosniac nationalists of various persuasions and those proponents found among all three Bosnian-Herzegovinian peoples who favor a “civil” but unitaryBosnia are eager to side with such international forces. They see them as tactical allies. By doing so, they gain additional political and even material power.

There is a second, but somewhat smaller group to be found outside the country that is comprised of geopolitical “realists.” Some of them advocate the division of Bosnia-Herzegovina into three parts. Others among them advocate its division into two parts. In both instances, the RS (Republika Srpska) is seen as a reality and its eventual unification with Serbia proper is presumed. On the other hand, some see today’s Croat-Bosniac Federation as Bosniac republic of tomorrow, while still others would urge that the western portion of Herzegovina be assigned to Croatia. The Serbs see the “realists” as their best allies while some Croats in Herzegovina calculate that “something is better than nothing,” or else, they hope that at least their native place will be united to the Republic of Croatia so such “realism” is acceptable to them.

Reveries over Nationalism

Among the most vocal international groups that have great influence on the future of Bosnia and Herzegovina are the various (in most cases) self-proclaimed experts. They see nationalism as the source of all problems that beset the former Yugoslavia and the present situation in Bosnia-Herzegovina—most especially that of the Serbs and Croats—whom they intentionally equate. However, the day-dreams and constructs that these self-proclaimed experts wish to impose on Bosnia-Herzegovina do more to muddy the situation in the country than to clarify it. They are so insistent on their vision that one may with justification start doubting if their true intention is to help to resolve the existing socio-political problems of Bosnia and Herzegovina, or something else.

It is as though these advocates of an “open” a-national society forget that in this part of Europe (as in most of the world) the forging of a national consciousness has preceded the independent state. In fact, the newly-formulated nationalism of the Bosniacs is not the result of state independence of Bosnia-Herzegovina. That nationalism simply entered into a new and more exuberant phase of its development since the dissolution of Yugoslavia. Such advocates must not forget that even in America—a land they frequently cite as the model of a “civil state”—every so often changes its electoral boundaries based on ethnic and racial factors: American society, as well, does not live in some sort of faceless and pure “civil” vacuum.

It is interesting to note that these same forces are, in theory, opposed to any sort of nationalism. Yet, in practice, they promote this newly-forged Bosnian nationalism by calling upon a historical myth that suggests some sort of “Bosnian cosmopolitanism” that is supposedly innate and extends back to the times of Medieval Bosnia and the Ottoman Conquest as well as to the yesteryear time of “brotherhood and unity”—a unity and brotherhood that the nationalism of modern-day Croats and Serbs is said to have put into a state of disorder. They, of course, now wish to restore that lost order in a new set of clothes. Furthermore, these advocates pass over the nationalism of the Bosniacs in silence while setting forth Croat and Serb nationalism as being equal and one and the same. Their silence has both a political and propaganda purpose—one that does not lend itself to a clarification of constitutional and existential questions in Bosnia-Herzegovina. All those who are fair-minded can easily discern who and why the war in Croatia and in Bosnia-Herzegovina was initiated. They can also discern just as easily that the Greater-Serbia-expansionism and that the Bosnian/Bosniac-unitarism of today are far greater dangers for the continued existence of Bosnia-Herzegovina and not Croat nationalism. Those two are the key problems facing the solution of the Bosnian-Herzegovinian question. Croats simply have as their goal the assurance of lasting constitutional rights and equality within a tri-national Bosnia-Herzegovina.

In Place of a Conclusion

While a fateful battle rages over the Bosnian-Herzegovinian question, my brother Vlatko and his offspring, whose very lives and future are at stake, in the meantime, is simply a non-existent factor in that struggle. They simply must accept that which is forced upon them in the name of freedom by the major powers. It was thus in Bosnia and Herzegovina through the centuries—and it’s as though it must continue to be thus even today. Were anyone to bother to ask common folk like my brother, the Bosnian-Herzegovinian question is not as irresolvable as might seem. They desire peace, true freedom, and a country that will guarantee them a secure life by virtue of law, and in essence, to be that which they are by virtue of nationality, faith, language and culture. They fail to see why individual rights and the rights of peoples in Bosnia and Herzegovina need to be confronted rather than harmonized. They cannot understand why individuals must be “altered” into something that they are not and thereby force them (perhaps intentionally) to be “enemies” of the state rather than positive citizens. Precisely because of such a political stance, the former state disintegrated.

Let those who truly wish what is good for Bosnia-Herzegovina and its citizens cease to force various ideological reveries along with socio-political experimentations. Such reveries and experiments will, sooner or later, lead to new crises and bloodshed. The same approach that was used to end the war ten years ago, namely, a direct, practical, and determined approach to the military engagement, must be used to find a constitutional solution wherein all three constitutive peoples of Bosnia-Herzegovina along with all its citizens will be truly equal and free. In order for this to happen, Dayton’s Bosnia-Herzegovina must be brought to an end. In its place, a just and lasting constitutional solution must be guaranteed wherein each of its three peoples as well as each individual will be able to live and to create a better future for himself and for Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Translated by Dusko Condic – Chicago

Deseta obljetnica Daytona

DESETA OBLJETNICA DAYTONA

Ante Čuvalo – Chicago

Hrvatska revijaGodište V./2005., broj 4., st.49-53.

Umjesto uvoda

U Proboju blizu Ljubuškog, Bosna i Hercegovina, gdje sam rođen, živi moj najstariji brat Vlatko. Njegova djeca i unučad su mladice iz starog panja koji se već stoljećima tamo zakorjenio. Kao Hrvat i katolik, on je proživio sve „blagodati“ (uključujući i zatvor) koje su doše s Jugoslavijom, komunizmom, nedavnim ratom u Bosni i Hercegovini i daytonskim sporazumom. Tipična je to hrvatska obitelj koja je živjela i preživjela radeći, moleći, čuvajući svoje i poštujući druge i drugačije, i tako bi željela i dalje živjeti, ali u istinskoj slobodi, pravdi i sigurnosti.

Za prijašnjih režima njemu je bilo vrlo jasno (kao i većini Hrvata u BiH) tko nad njim gospodari. Ne samo da je bio bezpravan, nego, kao Hrvat, bio je i prije rođenja označen kao neprijatelj države. U daytonskoj Bosni i Hercegovini nitko ga ne prati ili prisluškuje; pjeva i priča što hoće, slobodno se kreće, druži se s kim želi i glasuje za koga hoće. Prividno sve izgleda uredu. Ali premda je prošlo deset godina od kako u toj zemlji oružje šuti, moj brat ne osjeća da „normalno“ živi niti doživljava Bosnu i Hercegovinu kao „normalnu“ državu. On je „slobodan“, živi u „demokraciji“, ali je vrlo svjestan da se sve važno i sudbonosno u toj zemlju odvija u ime njega (u ime naroda) ali bez njega; iznad konkretna čovjeka, građanina. Još i više, kao Hrvata i dalje ga neki smatraju nelojalnim građaninom njegove međunarodno priznate države.

I oni koji ga naime zastupaju kao Hrvata i oni koji bi ga htjeli zastupati samo kao „nedefinirana“ građanina, kao i oni koji su došli iz „civiliziranog“ dijela svijeta i preuzeli sudbinu Bosne i Hercegovine u svoje ruke, uspostavili su takav sustav vladavine da moj brat i svi kao on, nemaju s njihovim raznim „procesima“, gospodarskim programima ili političkim i društvenim nadogradnjama i eksperimentima, nikave veze. Oni stvaraju državu i u njoj političke, gospodarske, kulturne i obrazovne nadogradnje za njega, njegovu djecu i unučad, bez njega i na njegov račun. Ne samo političare, nego i razne skupine „misionara“ različitih uljudnosti i dobro plaćene „stručnjake“ za bosanskohercegovačeko pitanje, ne zanima šta moj brat i obični smrtnik u Bosni i Hercegovini misli i osjeća. Oni slijde svoje interese, nameću svoje ideologije ili isprobavaju najnovije društveno-političke teorije u tuđoj zemlji i na tuđim životima. Oni zidaju odzgo, oni grade „svoju“ Bosnu i Hercegovinu. Posljedice svega toga su lako uočljive. Oni koji su preživjeli i ostali doma životare, a mlađi bi htjeli odprhnuti bilo kamo. Ljudi su prožeti osjecajem nesigurnosti, beznđem, pa i strahom, jer se još i ne nazire kako će ta zemlja i država izgledati u budućnosti i koje će mjesto u njoj imati moj brat, njegova unučad i hrvatski narod kojem pripada.

Uzroci takvom stanju su mnogostruki i slojeviti, ali jedan od ključnih je daytonski sporazum, koji je, umjesto postavljanja temelja stabilnosti i normalizaciji života za sve narode i građane Bosne i Hercegovine, onemogućio temeljit, čvrst i pravedan ustavni ustroj zemlje. Ako se ovako nastavi, i narod i država će plutati do opet nekakve druge katastrofe, kad će se ponovo „riješavati“ bosanskohercegovačko pitanje.

Daytonski mlinski kamen

Daytonski sporazum, to jest njegovi potpisnici, zaustavili su tadašnji rat oružjem, ali su omogućili nastavak rata na druge načine. Dio sporazuma koji se ticao vojnih pitanja bio je jasno definiran. Međunarodnim vojnim snagama (IFOR-u i njegovim nasljednicima) bila je osigurna potrebna vojna moć i ovlasti za provedbu dogovorenoga, i one su uspješno obavile svoj zadatak. Na radost i čuđenje mnogih, oružje je trajno zašutjelo jer se u vojnom pitanju znalo što se hoće i odlučno postupilo.

Na drugoj strani, dio sporazuma koji se odnosi na ustroj države i na civilni život bio je i ostao mlinski kamen oko vrata Bosni i Hercegovini i onima koji bi u njoj htjeli osigurati slobodan i normalan život. Državu sa tri priznata konstitutativna naroda popolovilo se na dva po omjeru umalo ista entiteta. Od jednog se stvorila etnički gotovo „čista“ Republika Srpska (RS), od drugog desetokantonska Federacija Bošnjaka i Hrvata, Brčko postaje svojevrsna republika za sebe i Mostar dolazi pod direktnu upravu Europe, a Bosna i Hercegovina, država sa 14 ustava, 14 vlada i 180 ministara, (p)ostala je veliki upitnik. Nije se doreklo je li Bosni i Hercegovini Dayton početak bolje budućnosti ili početak kraja. U takvom je protuslovlju krojena, kako jedan od bivših međunarodnih dužnosnika u BiH reče, luđačka košulja za daytonsku Bosnu i Hercegovinu.

Nadalje, sva goruća pitanja, kao povratak protjeranih i izbjeglih, pronalazak nestalih, ratni zločini, organiziranje i provedba izbora, moguće izmjene i dopune ustava, ljudska i manjinska prava, sudstvo, školstvo, banke, obnova gospodarstva, formiranje nove policije i vojske, sigurnost granica itd., Dayton je raspodijelio raznim međunarodnim ustanovama koje nemaju ni jasno definirane ovlasti niti moć, a još manje volje rješavati ih otvoreno, jasno i pravedno. Međunarodni Visoki Predstavnik, uz pomoć masovne i dobro plaćene birokracije, je postavljen koordinirati provodbu Daytona, odnosno vladati Bosnom i Hercegovinom kao suveren koji ima sve ovlasti, a za svoja (ne)dijela nikome na polaže račune.

Kolonijalizam u ime slobode

Ne tako davni britanski, francuski i drugi zapadnoeuropski kolonijalizam bio je opravdavan civilizacijskom misijom. Vodeći liberali tog vremena bili su angažirani intelektualci ne samo u promicanju slobodarskih ideja u svojim zemljama, nego i u potpori širenja liberalnog kolonijalizma. Tako, na primjer, dobro nam poznati Tocqueville na jednoj strani je veliki zagovornik osobnih sloboda, a na drugoj opravdava i podržava francusku okupaciju Alžira.

Ali vremena se mijenjaju, pa i kolonijalizam. Današnji kolonijalizam je uljudniji i suptilniji. Nije danas „pristojno“ jednostavno okupirati i vladati tuđom zemljom. Uostalom, to je preskupo i zna biti opasno. Danas se nameće indirektni kolonijalizam, koji je malo kompliciraniji, ali ljepše je pakiran, lakše ga je svijetu „prodati“ i unosniji je nego onaj bivši. On je višecentričan i uvlači se kroz tržište, međunarodne tvrtke, gospodarske bilateralne i multilateralne ugovore, kroz globalne organizacije i ustanove, razne fondove, investicije i banke, dominacijom u medijima, školstvu i kulturi, kroz razne sebi-služeće organizacije za ljudska, manjinska, životinjska i druga prava, te međunarodne sudove.

Postkomunističke „tranzicijske zemlje“ i one Trećeg svijeta, su najpovoljnije tlo za ovu vrstu neo-liberalnog kolonijalizma, koji se neustručava poslužiti i neliberalnim metodama da bi ostvario, ne demokratsko, nego kako se to danas politički korektno veli „civilno i otvoreno društvo“. A nije to jedno te isto. U demokratskom društvu narod ima (ili bi trebao imati) sudbinu države u svojim rukama, a u otovreno-neokolonijalnom suverenitet „izmče“ narodu i netko drugi ga pomalo preuzima. Ali narodi i u tradicionalno moćnim zemljama počinju se suočavati sa globalnim i višecentričnim kolonijalizmom koji sve više podkopava njihovu građansku moć, radno mjesto i ekonomsku stabilnost, te nameće ideološku i intelektualnu poslušnost, i globalni apsolutistički relativizam svih vrednota.

U ratom razrušenoj daytonskoj Bosni i Hercegovini prepliće se stari i novi tip kolonijalizma. To je suverena država, članica UN-a, ali bez stvarnog suvereniteta. Njom se vlada iz Bruxelles-a, preko samo-birajućeg PIC-a (Peace Implementation Council) i Visokog Predstavnika, a oni i svi drugi koji se upliću u sudbinu Bosne i Hercegovine imaju u njoj svoje interese i za nju svoje planove. U zemlji se održavaju redoviti izbori u kojima narod bira one koji dobiju imprimatur Visokog Predstavnika, a izabrani političari postali su s(l)oj ljudi, politička klasa, koji su između naroda i „međunarodnjaka“. Njihov legitimitet se formalno temelji na narodu koji ih je birao, ali to je farsa jer oni i njihove ovlasti ovise o političkoj volji ne naroda, nego Visokog Predstavnika i onih koji su ga postavili.

Osim apsolutističke vlasti Visokog Predstvnika, u Bosni i Hercegovini i oko njezine sudbine vrzino kolo vije cijela vojska svih mogućih „dobroželjitelja“ i „dobročinitelja“, te raznih „stručnjaka“ koji žele „civilizirati“ Bosnu i Hercegovinu i od nje napraviti nešto što ona nije. One koje materijalno love u mutnome ne treba ni spominjati. Nedorečenosti daytosnkog sporazuma svima dobro dođu, osim onih koji bi željeli i htjeli da Bosna i Hercegovina već jednom krene prema političkoj, društvenoj i gospodarskoj stabilnosti; da postane zemlja u kojoj se može slobodno i „normalno“ živjeti.

Djeljenje ili zaokruživanje bosanskohercegovačkog trokuta

Međunarodoni čimbenici, budći da nisu išli za tim da osiguraju u multinacionalnoj Bosni i Hercegovini pravedan mir i da pomognu postaviti ustavne temelje na kojima bi tri konstitutivna naroda i svi građani u zemlji gradili zajedničku bolju budućnost, ostavili su prostor nastavaka rata bez oružja. Nastavlja se, dakle, borba za različite političke ishode u Bosni i Hercegovini, pa i u njezinu susjedstvu. Ovdje ćemo navesti samo one najvažnije vizije oko koji se vodi borba za sutrašnju Bosnu i Hercegovinu.

Počet ćemo od Srba jer njihov nacionalni san je najjasniji. Premda su se tadašnje (1995.) vođe bosanskohercegovačkih Srba žestoko opirale daytonskom sporazumu (jer su tražili puno više), danas sve srpske političke, društvene i vjerske snage (u RS, u Srbiji i srpskoj dijaspori) koje među Srbima iole nešto znače čvrsto stoje na obrani Daytona, odnosno „etnički čiste“ RS. Po njihovu tumačenju sporazuma, Dayton je otvorio vrata procesu odcjepljenja RS od ostalih djelova Bosne i Hercegovine i njezinu budućem ujedinjenju sa Srbijom. Dakle Republika Srpska nije konačni cilj, nego ključ za dalji „prodor na zapad“ i ostvarenju (prije ili kasnije) velikosprskog sna u kojoj će se naći i „trenutačno izgubljeni“ dijelovi Republike Hrvatske. Moguća tro-entitetska, kantonizirana ili regionalizirana BiH bi dovela u pitanje namjenjenu povijesnu ulogu RS i zato za Srbe daytonska BiH i u njoj (zasad) RS, premda u nezavidnom gospodarskom i društvenom stanju, je jedini izbor. Slijedi se logika da treba sve izdržati za ostvarenje vjekovnih velikosrpskih ideala „nebeskog naroda“. Zato su Srbi (zasad) najrevniji čuvari daytonske Bosne i Hercegovine.

Snovi bosnjačke političke, kulturne i vjerske elite za buduću Bosnu i Hercegovinu su na prvi pogled maštoviti i višebojni, ali ih nije teško sažeti u dvije temeljne odrednice. Jedni bi htjeli ostvariti unitarnu Bosnu (za većinu Hercegovina je samo smetnja u bošnjačkom državotvornom projektu) i u njoj bosansku državnu naciju u kojoj bi Bošnjaci/muslimani, kao većinski narod, imali ulogu čuvara države. Bosna (i Hercegovina) bila bi mini-Jugoslavija, Bosanstvo bi zamjenilo Jugoslavenstvo, Bošnjaci jučerašnje Srbe i muslimansko/bošnjačko Sarajevo srpski Beograd. Ovaj nacionalni program se, među ostalim, jasno izražava u „bosanskom“, a ne bošnjačkom ili pak bosansko-hercegovačkom jeziku.

Alternativa prvom modelu je prihvaćanje daytonske podijele zemlje na dva entiteta i postepeno pretvaranje bošnjačko-hrvatske Federacije u bošnjačku/muslimansku republiku, računajći da će Hrvati kao nejači partner u Federaciji na razne načine odumrijeti ili postati samo etnička manjina. Na ovaj način bi se ostvario mini-velikobošnjački san, dok bi se u isto vrijeme jačao bošnjački/muslimanski elemenat u RS računajući da je vrijeme i po božanskom zakonu na njihovoj strani. Izgleda da je kod potpisivanja Daytona vladajuća bošnjačka elita oko SDA i njezinih saveznika smatrala ovaj mini-velikobošnjački san za sad realnijim te je igrala (i igra) više na srpsku kartu, nego na partnerstvo s Hrvatima u zajedničkom suzbijanju ostvarenja velike Srbije. Dok njezini sljedbenici ovu taktiku smatraju mudrim političkim realizmom, neke pak druge bošnjačke snage osuđuju vodstvo SDA za srbofilstvo kojim su Bosnu i Hercegovinu doveli na rub propasti.

Sve važnije bošnjačke političke, društvene i religijske snage dok bi možda pristale na neku vrstu neetničkog regionalizma, odbijaju tronacionalnu BiH u kojoj bi njezina tri naroda imala zagarantirana ista prava i iste odgovornosti u zajedničkoj državi. Sve se bošnjačke političke grupacije zaklinju u „građansku“ i multietničku Bosnu (ili neki Bosnu i Hercegovinu), ali ono „građansko“ i „multietničko“ je svjetlucavi omot oko velikobošnjačke ideologije po kojoj bi bošnjaštvo ili pak bosanstvo, kao drugo lice iste ideologije, bilo prihvaćeno (prije ili kasnije) kao nacionalni identitet svih građana. Time bi se tronacionalna Bosna i Hercegovina pretočila u multietničku u kojoj bi, naravno, Bošnjaci bili „temeljni narod“ i čuvari države. Ali gdje ima „temeljnih“ ima i „netemeljnih“ i gdje ima čuvara države, mora biti i onih od kogo bi ju trebalo čuvati!

Stvarnost je da Hrvati Bosne i Hercegovine nemaju zajedničku temeljnu viziju za sutrašnju Bosnu i Hercegovinu. Zadnjih petnaestak godina bilo je različith snova, kao i svjesna ili nesvjesna zavaravanja i samozavaravanja oko moguće podijele Bosne i Hercegovine, dok nisu mnogi shvatili da su ipak Hrvati BiH tokom rata bili samo jedna od karata u taktiziranju službenog Zagreba oko obrane Republike Hrvatske. Zato je Hrvatska Republika Herceg-Bosna tako lako i otpisana. Republika Hrvatska je „Olujom“ omogućila i zatim potpisala Dayton ne radi Hrvata Bosne i Hercegovine, nego radi interesa (ili se barem tako mislilo) Republike Hrvatske.

Sudeći po onome što se može čuti i pročitati, današnjim različitim vizijama za sutrašnju Bosnu i Hercegovinu ipak se među Hrvatima BiH može naći zajednički nazivnik. Oni su za promijenu Daytona i traže Bosnu i Hercegovinu koja će im trajno osigurati građanska i nacionalna prava i ravnopravnost. Manje im je važno kakvim ustavnim odrednicama bi se to osiguralo, premda se najviše govori o trećem entitetu ili švicarskom modelu kantoniziranog ustroja države. Zasigurno, ima i onih, u prvom redu u Hercegovini, koji bi još rado vidjeli raspad BiH i uključenje barem njihova sela u granice Republike Hrvatske, ali kod većine prevladava realizam i u prvom redu zabrinutost za ostanak i opstanak na svojim vjekovnim ognjištima, a ne za nekakav velikohrvatski san na račun Bosne i Hercegovine. A važno je napomenuti i da u Republici Hrvatskoj nema puno interesa ni za prilike u Bosni i Hercegovini, a kamo li za svojatanje nekih njezinih djelova.

Ovdje treba dodati da uz bošnjačku postoje i druge skupine unutar zemlje koje zagovaraju „građansku“ Bosnu i Hercegovinu. I oni su za promijenu Daytona, ali unaprijed odbacuju sva riješenja koja uzimaju u obzir i nacionalni faktor. Za njih ne postoje skupna, nego samo pojedinačna prava. Temeljni ustavni princip bi trebao biti jedan čovjek-jedan glas. Oni su za Bosnu (i Hercegovinu) u kojoj se nacija i država positovjećuju. Kažu da im je multietnička Amerika model, ali u biti su ostali vjerni mitu „bratstva i jedinstva“ u kojem su oni donedavno bili kava-takva elita, te žele i dalje zadržati status kreme bosanskohercegovačkog društvu u ime etno-vjerske skupine kojoj slučajno pripadaju.

U međunarodnim krugovima, posebice na Zapadu, postoje dvije važnije snage koje se protive tronacionalnoj Bosni i Hercegovini. Jednima se žuri „razgraditi“ nacionalne identitete u Bosni i Hercegovini računajući da će odsjecajući pojedince i skupine od njihovih korijena omogućiti stvaranje „čistih građana“. Usprkos tolikim krvavim dokazima da ovakve nametnute društvene konstrikcije ne riješavaju, nego pogoršavaju odnose među ljudima i narodima, ipak se zalažu za Bosnu (i Hercegovinu) kao talionicu naroda. Bošnjački nacionalisti raznih struja i zagovaratelji „građanske“ Bosne iz redova sva tri bosanskohercegovačka naroda rado se priključuju ovim međunarodnim snagama kao taktičkim saveznicima, i to im daje dodatnu političku, pa i materijalnu moć.

Drugu manju skupinu čine geopolitički „realisti“. Neki od njih zagovaraju podijelu Bosne i Hercegovine na tri dijela, a drugi pak na dva. U oba slučaja Srpsku Republiku se uzima kao stvarnost i prihvaća se njezino konačno priključenje Srbiji. U Federaciji jedni vide sutrašnju bošnjačku državu, a drugi bi ipak dodijelili Hrvatima zapadni dio Hercegovine. U „realistima“ Srbi vide najbolje saverznike, a među Hrvatima u Hercegovini neki računaju „bolje išta nego ništa“ ili se nadaju priključenju barem svog rodnog kraja Republici Hrvatskoj te im je ovakav realizam prihvatljiv.

Tlapnje o nacionalizmu

Među najglasnijim međunarodnim skupinama koji imaju velik utjecaj na budućnost Bosne i Hercegovine su razni (u najviše slučajeva) samozvani stručnjaci koji u nacionalizmu vide izvor svih problema u bivšoj Jugoslaviji i današnjoj BiH, posebice u srpskom i hrvatskom, koje oni vrlo rado i namjerno izjednačuju. Ali njihove tlapnje i konstrukcije koje žele nametnuti više mute, nego bistre prilike u Bosni i Hercegovini. Toliko su uporni da se spravom može posumnjati da oni uistinu žele pomoći riješiti postojeće društveno-političke probleme u Bosni i Hercegovini.

Ovi promicatelji anacionalnog „otvorenog društva“ kao da zaboravljaju da u ovim dijelovima Europe (i u većini svijeta) „kovanje“ nacionalne svijesti je prednjačilo osamostaljenju država. Čak i novoformulirani bošnjački nacionalizam nije rezultat državnog osamostaljenja Bosne i Hercegovine, nego je samo raspadom Jugoslavije ušao u novo i bujnije doba svog razvoja. Nebi trebali zaboraviti da i u Americi, koju oni često spominju kao model „građanske države“, svako toliko se mijenjaju granice raznih izbornih okruga radi etničkih i rasnih razloga jer i američko društvo ne živi niti će živjeti u nekakvom bezličnom „građanskom“ vakumu.

Zanimljivo je zamjetiti da ove snage su u teoriji protivnici svakog nacionalizma, a u praksi nameću novo-kovani bosanski nacionalizam i pozivaju se na povjesne mitove o nekakavu urođenom „bosanskom kozmopolitizmu“, od srednjovjekovne Bosne i osmanske okupacije do jučerašnjeg „bratstva i jedinstva“, kojeg su naime moderni hrvatski i srpski nacionalizmi poremetili, te oni ga sad žele obnoviti u novom ruhu. Nadalje, njihovo prišućivanje bošnjačkog nacionalizma i izjednačavanje srpskog i hrvatskog nacionalizma ima svoju političku i propagandnu svrhu, što ne doprinosi razjašnjavanju ustavnih i egzistencijalnih pitanja u Bosni i Hercegovini. Svi dobronamjerni mogu lako shvatiti zašto i tko je prouzročio rat u Hrvatskoj i Bosni i Hercegovini i da su danas velikosrpski ekspanzionizam i bosanski/bošnjački unitarizam puno opasniji za opstanak Bosne i Hercegovine i ključni problem za rješavanje bosanskohercegovačkog pitanja, a ne hrvatski nacionalizam, kojemu je glavni cilj osigurati trajna ustavna prava i jednakost u tronacionalnoj Bosni i Hercegovini.

Umjesto zaključka

Dok se vodi borba oko sudbonosnih bosanskohercegovačkih pitanja, moj brat Vlatko i njegovi potomci, o čijem se životima i budućnosti ovdje radi, kao da i ne postoje. Oni moraju prihvatiti ono što im veće sile u ime slobode odrede. Tako je to bilo u Bosni i Hercegovni već vjekovima i kao da mora biti i danas. Ali kad bi se njih pitalo bosanskohercegovački problemi nisu tako nerješivi kako ih se prikazuje. Oni žele mir, istinsku slobodu i državu koja će im zakonom zagarantirati pravo na siguran život i na biti ono što jesu po narodnosti, vjeri, jeziku i kullturi. Oni ne vide zašto prava pojedinaca i naroda u Bosni i Hercegovini treba sučeljavati, a ne usklađivati i ljude „pritakati“ u nešto što oni nisu, te ih time prisiljavati (možda i namjerno) da budu ne pozitivni građani, nego „neprijatelji“ države, kao što su ih smatrali i u onoj donedavnoj, koja se radi takve politike i raspala.

Oni koji žele dobro Bosni i Hercegovini i njezinim građanima neka dakle prestanu namećati razna ideološka sanarenja i društveno-političke eksperimente koji će prije ili kasnije dovesti do novih kriza i krvoprolića. Kao što se unazad deset godina pristupilo vojnim problemima direktno, praktično i odlučno, tako treba donijeti i ustavna riješenja po kojima će svaki od tri konstitutivna naroda i svaki građanin biti istinski slobodan i ravnopravan. Da bi se to postiglo, treba dokončati daytonsku Bosnu i Hercegovinu i osigurati pravedna i trajna ustavna rješenja po kojima će njezina tri naroda i svaki pojedinac moći živjeti i graditi bolju budućnost sebi i Bosni i Hercegovini.

OTPOR JUGO-KOMUNISTIČKOM REŽIMU POSLIJE DRUGOG SVJETSKG RATA

Iz članka: Kako je planula “Partizanka” 1949. – Prema dnevniku hrv. gerilca.

Hrvatski glas, 20. srpnja 1966. (vol. 38, br. 33).

..Komunisti i njihova OZNA i KNOJ nisu već 1947. godine „likvidirali“ odpor hrvatskih gerilaca, već, naprotiv, 1949-50-51., taj je odpor zadao neprijatelju najjači udarac i bio najuspješniji. Tek 1949. godine komunitički tisak počeo je donositi gubitke na njihovoj strani.

    Nabrojit ćemo nekoliko važnijih u to vrijeme:

Napad na brzi vlak kod Gračaca u Lici, u kojem su se nalazili fr. Diplomati, kojeg je posljedica bila, radi velikog publiciteta u inozemstvu, „da je Jadran u sezoni 1949-50, posjetilo svega 51 strani turist“. Uništavanje dvaju vlakova na postaji Plavno. Diverzije u tvornici u Dugoj Resi i skladištima nafte u Rijeci. Likvidiranje Josipa Poduje, jednog od osnivača KPJ. Vješanje hrv. zastave na Marjanu u Splitu, koja se vijala pola dana, a vezle su je majka i sestra Titiong „narodnog heroja Ante Jonića“, i za to bile kažnjene (vidi list „Slobodna Dalmacija, svibanj 1949.). Palenje doma „Vicko Krstulović“ u Splitu. Palenje borada „Partizanka“. Likvidacija nekih Udbaša usred Splita. Krajiški ustanak i napad na Bihać. Stotine akcija i sukoba sa milicijom i KNOJ-em u planinama Papuku, Motajici, Romaniji, Malovanu, Koprivnici (kod Bugojna), Kamešnici, Dinari, Kapeli, Velebitu i drugima – u kojima je bilo “ubijeno ili ranjeno 12,342 milicionera i knojevaca..”‘ (te brojke dao je u svom izvješću Nar. Skupštini, glavom A. Ranković, ožujak 1954. god.).

    Cilj tih akcija bio je jedan, – pokazati komunističkim tiranima, da hrvatski narod nije prignuo pred njima šiju, niti im se pokorio. Hrvatski gerilici nisu išli za tim, “da što više ubiju komunista”, već naprotiv, ubijanje je vršeno u krajnoj nuždi i jedino nad onima, čiji je teror nad narodom bio prevršio svaku mjeru.

    Kako je svrha ovog pisanja iznijeti samo jednu akciju, povodom njene godišnjice, to se nećemo zadržavati na opisivanju naših gerilaca, već prepuštamo riječ dnevniku:

 

“Ne možemo razumjeti, zašto nas narod zove „Križarima“ i tko je to ime izmislio? To mi, a napose Bosanci, ne možemo usvojiti. Naš svijet u Bosni zove nas „Zelenim Kadrom“. – Na kapama nosimo hrv. grb, to je simbol sviju nas. Za ime manje više…” (srpanj 1945.)

    “Komunisti vrše veliku propagandu preko svoga broda „Partizanka“. Varaju narod, tamo, u Americi i Australiji, lažu mu, kako je ovdje dobro i dovoze ga tim brodom natrag. U Splitu ga dočekuju velikim paradama. Vele, da neki dovode i auta koja da im komunisti oduzimaju uz malu odštetu. One koje nemaju kuća, komunisti smještaju u bivše talijanske vojničke barake u Splitu. To je naselje narod prozvao „drvenim Čikagom“.

    Da bi toj lažnoj propagandi stali na kraj, i spasili mnoge zavedene od propasti, odlučili smo poraditi na tome, da „Partizanke“ nestane. U Splitu ćemo to najlakše postici. Tamo imamo naše ljude.“ (kolovoz 1948.)

    „Dobili smo vijest iz Splita, da bi uskoro „Partizanka“ imala stići na generalni popravak u splitsko brodogradilište. Vijest nas je obradovala.“ (lipanj 1949.)

    „Stigla je u splitsko brodogradilište. Na doku se nalazi i bivši američki brod „Liberty“, koji je vozeći krompir, naišao na Jadranu na minu, Amerikanci ga napustili, a komunisti kupili i dovezli na popravak. Sada se zove „Hrvatska“. Na brodogradilištu je i jedna torpiljarka, koju su dobili za ratne reparacije od Italije. Na njoj je se nalazi oko 150 tona topničkih granata. „Partizanka“ je usidrena izmedju „Hrvatske“ i torpiljarke. Naši nam javljaju, da samo oni radnici koji su članovi Partije, smiju na „Partizanku“ i to s naročitim propusnicama. Primjerke tih propusnica su nam poslali. Veličine su „visit-karte“. Nešto posade je i dalje na brodu. Detaljan plan brodogradilišta će nam stići sjutra.“

    „Dobili smo plan. Krasno, jednim potezom uništiti ćemo sva tri broda, dok i brodogradilište. – Brodogradilište čuva jedna četa KNOJ-a, čiji je komandir neki Mrvica iz Šibenika. Kontrola je stroga, ali nam naši javljaju, da će se eksploziv moći unijeti i postaviti. Predlažu, da se upotrijebi “Plastik”, jer ga netreba mnogo i lakše ga je unijeti.”

    “Napravili smo plan i izabrali trojicu koja će u tom poslu krenuti u Split. Javili smo našim, da nastoje onesposobiti motor za vatrogasne pumpe, jer brodogradilište ima svoje vatrogasce. Prešli smo Cetinu i stigli u Mosor, gdje nas je na ugovorenom mjestu dočekala veza, jedan mladić, gimnazilac. Ne zna naše namjere, a i ne pita mnogo, ima poslužiti samo kao vodić do Splita. Jako je oduševljen susretom s nama. Kada se razdanilo s jednog velikog vrha gledamo more. Za većinu je to prvi put da ga vide. Kad se smrklo krenuli su, ona trojica i vodič, za Split. Ostali ostaju u Mosoru. Našima smo poslali plan i upute s tim, ako misle da nešto treba izmijeniti, da to urede.”

    „Noćas je stigao do nas izaslanik iz Splita. Naši su sa eksplozivom sretno stigli. Izaslanik veli, da će se akcija izvešti sutra na večer, 12. kolovoza, jer taj je dan na ulazu Mate Perković, komunista iz Kučina. Naš prijatelj nam kaže, da je taj Mate glup i da će se najlakše unijeti eksploziv baš kad je on na ulazu. Taj Mate Perković da je u ratu domamio svog najboljeg prijatelja do svoje kuće i tu su ga komunisti dočekali u zasjedi i ubili, radi toga, što je odbio suradnju s njima. Dežurni na brodogradilištu da će biti tu noć Jozo Kokan, mladi komunac, naivčina i neiskusan, pa će biti lako onesposobiti vatrogasne motore. Ne predviđa se, da bi moglo biti puno ljudskih žrtava, jer će se plan izvesti tokom noći.”

    „Ako plan uspije, bit će ogroman uspjeh. U tenkovima „Partizanke“ nalazi se 24 vagona nafte, koju je utovarila u Rijeci prije polaska za Split. Eksplozija te nafte zahvatit će torpiljarku i „Hrvatsku“. Ukoliko nafta s „Partizanke“ ne dosegne skladišta nafte na brodogradilištu, to će učiniti granate sa torpiljarke.”

    „Čim se smrklo, 12. kolovoza, popeli smo se na vrh Mosora i tu se smjestili za promatranje. Nešto prije ponoći suknuo je plamen na brodogradišlitu. Najprije manji, pa onda sve veći i veći. Oko 1 sat dosegao je visinu od 80 metara. Očekujemo eksploziju. – Ne pojavljuje se. Ali kako bilo da bilo, kula Titove lažen propagande „grije nebo“. „Drveni Čikago“ će morati dugo čekati na nove stanovnike. Ovo je nož u utrobu komunističkim krvnicima, koji već četiri godine prolijevaju potoke hrvatske krvi. Neka vide da nam nisu dorasli i da možemo napraviti što želimo i u mjestu koje oni drže kao svoju najsigurniju „bazu“ u njihovoj Strmoglaviji. Mislili su da im je brodogradilište “Vicko Krstulović“ nepovrijedivo. Čekajte krvnici, naučili smo se i mi, u ove četiri godine, nečemu….”

    „Naši su se sretno iste noći povratili. Neznaju nam mnogo objasniti, radi čega nije došlo do eksplozije. – Vele, da su nam naši iz Splita poručili, da pričekamo par dana u Mosoru, pa će nam poslati izvješće.”

    „Treću noć su stigla dvojica nših. Pričaju nam slijedeće: Sve je išlo po planu, kako treba. Eksploziv je postavljen kod malog tenka, jer do velikih tenkova bilo je teško doći. Motor na vatrogasnoj pumpi je bio onesposobljen. Komunisti su imali pod parom jedan remorker, pa su izvukli torpiljarku iz brodogradilišta. “Partizanka” je uništena tako požarom, da je se neće moći popraviti. Šteta je ogromna, a moralni uspjeh još veći. Mornari što su bili na njoj, poskakali su goli u more. Žrtava nije bilo. Udba je odmah uhapsila preko 300 članova Partije i obiteljima njihovim nije htjela reći, gdje su zatvoreni. Neki vele da su na Gripama, neki opet kažu, da su u Mejama. Drug Oto Ševeljević, sekretar partije na brodogradilištu, da je bijesan kao tigar. Udba da postupa sa partijcima gore nego sa “reakcijom”. Žene i obitelji partijaca “krešu” Udbi, partiji, pa i drugu Titu “sve na kamaru”…”

    „Vratili smo se u Bosnu. Iz Splita nam stižu vijesti, da se još mnogi partijci nalaze u zatvoru. Prvi da su pušteni nakon osam dana. Naša akcija podigla je uvelike moral u narodu. Po selima se čuda pričaju. Dolje u selu stari Ahmo pričao komšiji, da su naši potopili „Partizanku“. Ovaj odmah znatiželjno uzvrati:

Ma, u ćijem je bunaru utušiše?

Uh, brate, ma kakvom bunaru. Nije bolan insan, to ti je golema lađa, štono ovi šejtani hilnom narod dovalči iz Amerike.

Teško je starim ljudima rastumačiti koliko je bila velika „Partizanka“ jer nisu nikada bili na moru i vidjeli prekoceanske brodove. Vidili su šlepove na Savi i neki, kad su služili kod cara Franje, u Beču manje brodove.“

 

#

Iz dnevnika su, razumije se, izostavljena mnoga imena, način na koji je eksploziv pripravljen i unešen (čto je i najinteresantnije), ukratko sve ono, zašto nije vrijeme da se objavljuje. – Mnogi su od učesnika te akcije mrtvi, pali u neravnoj borbi s nadmoćnijim neprijateljem. Bili su sve to mladi ljudi, nijeda nije bio, u to vrijeme, prekoračio tridesetu. Volili su svoj narod i borili se za njegovu slobodu. Nisu željeli živjeti na koljenima i biti robovi tiranima. Nisu vjerovali da se bjegstvom preko granice može odatle Hrvatska osloboditi iz pandža komunizma. Svojim bistrim, seljačkim mozgom mislili su realno. Borili su se s oskudnim sredstvima protiv tirana na rodnoj grudi, i pali sa srcem punim ljubavi i patriotizma za tu grudu, – za Hrvatsku.

 

(Preneseni su dijelovi članka kojeg je pisac potpisao pseudonimom Mehmedalija Tuzlak)

 

Napomena

 

Priv brod koji je nakon rata prevozio emigrante povratnike i materijalnu pomoć iseljenika u Titovu Jugoslavio bio je trgovački parobrod “Radnik”, kupljen u San Franciscu. Zatim je u srpnju 1947. kupljen brod “City of Lisabon” u Portugalu i nazvan je “Partizanka”. Njezina glavna uloga je bila prevoziti iseljenike povratnike iz Južne Amerike i Australije. “Partizanka” je mogla smjestiti 750 putnika i imala je 195 članova posade, koji su bili provjereni partizanski borci, a uz njih je povratnike “zabavljalo” još 15 političkih komesara. “Partizanka” je plovila četiri puta u Južnu Ameriku i dva puta u Australiju. Ukupno je dovezla 2858 putnika, od tog broja oko 70% bili su Hrvati. Zadnji put je s povratnicima iz Australije uplovila u Riječku luku 5. svibnja 1949. i iskrcala 5 putnika i četerdeset ovaca! Pročula se istina o Titovom raju, socijalizmu i antifašizmu, te Partizanka ostala bez posla! Uskoro poslije povrataka iz Australije durogvi su unutrašnjost broda “oslobodili” svih stvari koje su se mogle skinuti i zatim poslali na “remont” u Split gdje je “Partizanka” planula 12. kolovoza 1949.

Priredio Ante Čuvalo

Social Elements in the Croatian National Movement of the Early Seventies: Manipulation or a National Reawakening?

SOCIAL ELEMENTS IN THE CROATIAN NATIONAL MOVEMENT OF THE EARLY SEVENTIES: MANIPULATION OR A NATIONAL REAWAKENING?

Paper delivered at Ohio Wesleyan University, Delaware, Ohio, 1989

Ante Čuvalo

The Croatian national revival of the late 1960s and early 1970s has been interpreted by official and semi-official observers in Yugoslavia, and also by a number of individuals outside the country, in a negative light. According to them, the movement was a counter-revolution, rotten liberalism, blind and uncontrollable nationalism, or merely a manipulation of the masses by the young and ambitious Communist Party leadership in the republic of Croatia. It is claimed that the movement had gotten out of hand, and, therefore, the regime had no choice but to crush the evil forces that could have brought calamity to the whole country. These and similar assertions, however, are too simplistic. They have been put forward, it seems, mostly for the purpose of justifying the regime’s actions or, in the case of foreign observers, out of fear that any kind of Croatian revival might be perilous to the unity of the Yugoslav state and, therefore, to the balance of terror between the two superpowers.

If one looks a little deeper, however, it is clear that the Croatian movement was a genuine national reawakening and, as such, it became a major challenge to the centralist forces in Belgrade, their allies in Croatia, and to the Communist Party’s monopoly of power, which constantly reinforce each other.

In this presentation, we will look at the Communist Party factions at the time, how different social segments in Croatia responded to the movement, and, at the end, we will offer some general observations on the movement.

Factions in the Party

There were three party factions in Croatia in the early 1970s: conservatives, neoconservatives, and progressives. The conservatives yearned for the “good old days” when the party leadership was in full control of the state and society. Centralism and unitarianism were two main characteristics of their political view regarding the national question in the country. According to their own party comrades at the time, the conservatives were “stricken by panic only by hearing the words Croat, Croatian, Croatian language, or the like. They considered it to be a revival of unhealthy ghosts of the past….. They did not wish to accept the fact that there is no such thing as a Yugoslav nation.”1

The second faction, neoconservatives, emerged after the Tenth Session of the Central Committee of the League of Communists of Croatia in January 1970. The leading members of this group belonged to the liberal reformists party faction in the 1960s. But after a progressive party platform was promulgated at the Tenth Session, some of the former liberals began to disagree with the young top party leadership in the republic over the interpretation and implementation of the platform. As a result, they moved closer to the old conservatives, and these two factions were instrumental in bringing down the progressive party leadership and in crushing the movement.

The party progressives were found among the younger party membership, intellectuals, and at the top of the party leadership at the time. Their main goal was to implement the republic’s liberal party platform which stood for further decentralization of the Yugoslav federal center, a larger role of a market economy, Croatian national emancipation, as well as for a more pluralistic and open society.

One of the main causes of the split between the neoconservatives and the progressives was the question of handling rising Croatian national voices regarding economic, social, cultural, political, and national issues. To the neoconservatives such voices were a threat to the goals and achievements of the Revolution because they were meddling into the domain designated only for the avant-garde of the working class. They especially looked upon the intellectuals as a potential political challenge that “cultivated a deep process of political struggle with the aim of discrediting the party ….2 This party faction, therefore, advocated a policy of the “firm hand” and accused the progressives of not being decisive enough in dealing with, what they claimed to be, a political opposition in the making.

The party progressives in Croatia were heirs to the “national communism” that had been present in Croatia before, during, and after World War II. In accordance with that tradition, they attempted to combine class and national components in Croatian society. In doing so, they legitimized the Croatian national revival and also began to politicize the social elements outside the party. Both of these moves, however, were condemned by the party traditionalists. To combine the “class” and “national” struggle had been an old dualist heresy for the “old believers” in the party. But most of all, the growing politicization of the masses was seen as a threat to the party’s monopoly of power, as well as to the personal power of the “faithful servants” in the party bureaucracy. Thus, it was inevitable that a conflict would arise between those who sought to preserve the political and ideological status quo and those who strived for a change.

In their struggle, each of the groups turned to their natural allies. The conservatives and neoconservatives found a strong support outside of Croatia, most of all at the federal center and the federally controlled forces. (There is a strong likelihood that these two party factions in Croatia were more an instrument of than a partner to the centralist forces.) The progressives, on the other hand, stressed moral, ideological, and historical rights in their arguments and turned to the Croatian people. However, the real balance of power was overwhelmingly on the side of the party traditionalists and the federal center. While the progressives had the masses, their opponents had the military, police, and other federal instruments of power on their side. It is no surprise, therefore, that the progressives were easily defeated when the two sides openly clashed in November 1971.

Intelligentsia

There were two main groups among the intellectuals in Croatia in the late Sixties. One was gathered around Matica hrvatska (Matrix Croatica), the oldest Croatian cultural institution, and the Croatian University in Zagreb; the other around the Praxisjournal. The Weltanschauung of the Matica and University intellectuals was humanist socialism and internationalism through freedom and equality of every individual and every nation. For them, the world was a rainbow of different races, peoples, and individuals living in harmony. Diversity, racial, and national differences were a blessing and not a curse. They believed that “a uniform world meant a homogenized emptiness.”3

It was this group of intellectuals that initiated and sustained the Croatian national reawakening in the Sixties. They were among the first to raise the question of national and individual rights, as well as of cultural suppression and economic exploitation of Croatia. Their quest was to stop such injustices and to promote full implementation of the principle of federalism, national equality, and self-management.

The second group of Croatian intellectuals was very small in number, but became known outside the country for its criticism of governments in other communist countries, and for its own interpretation of Marx. However, while criticizing the existing socialist order, their own definitions “became pure dogmas at the moment…at which those definitions were applied to existing [social, national, or economic] relations.”4

One of the major differences between the Praxis and Matica groups was that the intellectuals around Matica believed one does not have to step out of national categories in order to come to international humanism, while the other group considered nationalism, by its very nature, to be contrary to socialism and humanism. However, while the Praxis group was always ready to speak on universal issues, they tended to stay aloof from concrete national problems. Furthermore, while stubbornly supporting Yugoslav nationalism, they condemned the Croatian national movement as too constrictive, and their proclaimed humanism and liberalism became very confining, even authoritative, when they dealt with those that disagreed with them.

Students

Since World War II until the late 1960s, university students in Croatia tended to fall into two major camps. In the first were the students who cooperated with the regime, and in the second those who stayed outside the system. While independent student organizations were not tolerated and the existing ones were mere “transmission belts” of the party, many of the students outside the party-controlled organizations were quite often denounced as anti-state elements and persecuted.

During the national revival, the organized student groups became more and more involved in political and national life on their own, and finally in 1970-71 they became independent from the party’s tutelage. As a result, the two student camps were converging into a single force. Furthermore, students at the time, like the nationalist intellectuals, did not oppose the system itself but began to work independently through it. And, in a very short time, students became the most active part of the Croatian national movement, putting the proclaimed party principles to a real test. And even more importantly, the traditional divisions between the pro-regime students and the anti-regime ones were dissipating.

With the election of Ivan Zvonimir Čičak (December 21, 1970) as Pro-Rector of the Croatian University in Zagreb and with the election of the non-party student leadership in Zagreb (April 4, 1971), the students in Croatia finally emerged as an independent social force. They ceased to be an arm of the party and began to chart their own course. They supported the progressive party leadership, worked closely with the leading intellectuals at the University and Matica, and became the heart of the Croatian national revival.

The students’ concerns went far beyond their own interests; they were very much aware of and preoccupied with the economic, social, and political problems of their nation. Like so many other student movements at the time, they had a universal vision of a peaceful global community, but their concerns were also very concrete. They wanted to be “deeply and sincerely Croatian and at the same time international and socialist in the best meaning of the word.” 5

The social background of the Croatian students was mixed. It was, however, no accident that the most active students in the movement came from the regions of Croatia and neighboring Bosnia-Herzegovina that had been most economically deprived and politically oppressed by the Belgrade centralism and hegemonism. Thus, their demands were not only national but also social and economic. They stressed that speculations of whether their activities were nationally or class motivated were nothing but pure metaphysics.

While the student movement was accepted as legitimate by the party progressives, the other two factions in the party saw the student activism as a clear threat to the party role in society. The students and the Matica intellectuals were looked upon as a growing political force parallel to the party, and the conservative forces were waiting for an opportune moment to crush them.

The national movement was not limited to the students at the university level. It also involved the secondary school and the Youth Alliance itself, which traditionally had been a hotbed of party recruits. The leadership of the Youth Alliance in Croatia stressed at the time that their organization was not “above or below the interests of people of Croatia” and that the Alliance was “an integral part of the national movement as a whole.”6

Workers and Peasants

Because there were no political or cultural centers, or organizations exclusively for workers and/or peasants, except under the party control, it is very hard to measure how deeply did the movement penetrate these two social groups in Croatia. These two elements make up the largest portion of population in Croatia but it can be stated that this majority was a “crowd” without a specific political or even social framework. The social lines between the two groups had been very much blurred since many workers were at the same time peasants and vice versa and there was not an independent political structure to give an organizational framework to that “crowd.”

The relationship between the party and workers and peasants had been of political nature. Although the party had legitimized its rule and claimed the leading role in society by proclaiming to be the avant-garde of the working class, it had become progressively alienated from the working class, and even more so from the peasants. In 1948, for example, workers represented 30.1 per cent and in 1970 they made up 29.9 per cent of the party membership. At the same time, the peasants constituted 47.8 per cent and 6.5 per cent of the membership for those respective years.7 The relationship between the workers and the regime was described at the time in this way:

The workers have comprehended that under the existing conditions they cannot find solution to their vital problems. They do not want barricades. But the political leaders of the land gave them what is most necessary – they gave them a passport. They did not, however, go to Sofia but to Munich. In this way, they are solving their problems.8

The workers’ problem, however, cannot be put simply into a class problem, because, among other things, massive immigration of the Croatian working class pointed to the national dimension of the difficulties that the worker/peasant class faced.

Probably, the best indicator of the popularity (a fact that even the regime conceded) of the Croatian national movement and a clear sign that it did spread to Croatian villages, factories, and even to all elements of society is the growth of Matica hrvatska. For example, from November 1970 until December 1971, some thirty new branches of Matica were organized in today’s Republic of Croatia. At the same time, its membership grew from 2,300 to 41,000. By the end of 1971, this organization had 33 steering committees to organize new chapters. (One should also keep in mind that Matica was not allowed to organize its branches directly among the workers.) Furthermore, Matica had 14 publications when it was crushed at the end of 1971. Hrvatski tjednik/Croatian weekly, the main voice of the movement, reached a circulation of over 100,000 copies in only 33 weeks of existence. This could not have happened if the nationalist ideas did not find a fertile soil among the Croatian common people.

A possible explanation for this phenomenon can be found in the fact that the Croatian peasant and worker, or better said, a common person, has never adhered to the idea of “Yugoslavism” or Communism. These two ideologies remained alien to the common people; these were ideologies of the elite. That is why none of these ideologies has ever been legitimized in Croatia, and the representatives of both ideologies have been constantly looked upon with mistrust and even with animosity. It was among the common folk where the elementary national identity had been preserved and, most probably the Croatian village played a more important role in post-World War II Croatian nationalism than has been visible on the surface.

Another indicator that the movement was widespread in all regions of the republic, and that it cut through all elements of society, is the official statistics about the party purges in 1972. Out of 741 Party members dismissed before April 1972, 228 were from Osijek (north of the republic), 171 from Split (south), and 213 from Zagreb (center). Out of that number, 85 were workers, 80 “technical intelligentsia,” 96 “humanist intelligentsia,” 288 leadership officials, 144 administrative officials, 56 students, 43 retired personnel, and 37 other.9 The enthusiasm and high hopes among the Croatian masses during the movement, massive purges, and national lethargy in the post-Karadjordjevo period strongly indicate that the movement was a genuine national revival and not merely an artificially concocted crusade by the party leaders, as it has been suggested by a number of analysts in the West.

Concluding Remarks

If taken purely from the functional point of view, every nationalism has, at least partially, a mobilizing role. Thus, the latest Croatian national movement too was a strong mobilizing force. However, if probed deeper, one can easily discern that the movement was much more than a tool in someone’s hands, as it is often portrayed. This movement had a painful birth among the Croatian intellectuals in the early 1960s, and grew very slowly during the process of decentralization of the country after Aleksandar Ranković‘s fall in 1966. As it has been stated earlier, the Croatian national consciousness and desire for national emancipation was preserved in the Croatian society at large, but it was suppressed by the Belgrade regime, more specifically by the infamous Udba and its methods of terror. The reforms of the late Sixties and early Seventies, however, created enough room for a change. Croatians had a strong enough will to take the chance, and try to turn a deep desire for individual freedom and national emancipation into a national movement.

This movement could not have been manipulated by a single group or by an individual, because it was not fully unified not controlled from a single nerve center. One can, perhaps, say that there was a tacit understanding between the different social elements, primarily between the party progressives and the Matica intellectuals, that something should be done to change the fate of the Croatian nation, but there was not a central group that planned the events nor manipulated the masses. Students, for example, went on strike contrary to the party progressives’ wishes and that marked the end of the movement at the beginning of December 1971. Actually, there had been some deep mistrust between the Matica and the progressive party leadership. An indication of this disunity can be even seen in Miko Tripalo’s only interview since 1971 given last year to Mladina (March 11, 1988) in which he talks about “we” and “they”, meaning the party progressives and those at Matica.

That the movement had not been a mere balloon in the hands of the party progressives which lost all the air when it was punctured at the end of 1971, is evident from the official and semi-official assessments of the national situation in the country, which constantly have being pointing out that Croatian nationalism, although in a dormant stage, continues to be present in schools, churches, sport stadiums, the university, among the young and the old alike. If it had only been a superficially created nationalism, without deeper roots in the society at large, it would have disappeared as soon as the increased persecution began. But, because it did grow out of a deep Croatian dissatisfaction with the Yugoslav state and it had the support of the masses, the crush of the movement merely proved to the Croatians that their future was in serious jeopardy in Yugoslavia.

The real issue in December 1971 was not the threat of Croatian nationalism or of counter-revolution. It was a struggle between centralist and decentralist forces, and the party’s fear of losing the monopoly of power. An indication of this, is the notorious meeting of Tito with Croatia’s communist leadership in Karadjordjevo, Bačka (December 1, 1971) where the main discussion centered around the intra-party struggle and not the students’ strike or the so-called counter-revolution. The movement was portrayed as a threat to the country and/or to peace in Europe; and it was simply labeled as ustashism and fascism for the purpose of disarming it of any positive value, so that its suppression and the regime’s terror could be justified in the eyes of the world.

If we look at those events from an historical perspective, the Croatian national movement of the late Sixties and early Seventies, in its goals and methods, corresponds closely to Radić‘s movement of the 1920s. Its methods were peaceful and popular. Its main goals were national self-preservation and emancipation, direct participation in the world rainbow of nations, with its national colors and not through mediators like Vienna, Budapest or Belgrade; its ultimate goal was individual and national freedom.

1 Savka Dapčević-Kučar, Deseta sjednica Centralnog komiteta Saveza komunista Hrvatske (Zagreb: Vjesnik, 1970), p. 8.

2 Jakov Blažević in Zapisnik sjednice iz Karađorđeva (Chicago: Hrvatska tiskara, 1975), p. 185.

3 Vlado Gotovac, “Autsajderski fragmenti,” (III) Kritika Vol. 2, No. 8, 1969, p. 538.

4 Z. C. “Praxisov bijeg od sadašnjosti,” Dometi Vol. 1, No. 2-3, 1968, p. 82.

5 Hrvatsko sveučilište No. 5, April 15, 1971.

6 Mirko Madjor, “Preobražaj Hrvatske – zadatak mladih,” Hrvatski gospodarski glasnik, No. 4, July 5, 1971., p. 22.

7 April Carter, Democratic Reform in Yugoslavia (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1982), p. 261. One should also keep in mind that the percentage of the unskilled workers in the party has been constantly declining.)

8 Ivan Babić, Studentski list, No. 22, October 26, 1971.

9 Izvještaj o stanju u Savezu komunista Hrvatske u odnosu na prodor nacionalizma u njegove redove (Zagreb: SK Hrvatske – CK, 1972), p. 127-130.

POTONUĆE TITANIKA – STOTA OBLJETNICA

2POTONUĆE TITANIKA – STOTA OBLJETNICA

Podaci koji slijede objavljeni su na engleskom jeziku u “Hrvatskoj kronici – Chicago”, br. 1., proljeće 2002., prigodom 90. obljetnice potonuća Titanika. Ovdje ih donosimo u prijevodu, s nekim sitnijim izmjenama i dopunama, povodom 100. obljetnice tog poznatog tragičnog dogođaja.
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Petnaestog travnja 2012. navršava se 100 godina od potonuća prekoocenaskog “nepotopivog” broda Titanika. Među 1316 putnika, od kojih je 818 izgubilo živote u ovoj užasnoj nesreći, koja je zapanjila tadašnji svijet, bilo je i nekoliko Hrvata i drugih koji su dolazili iz Hrvatske i Bosne-Hercegovine. Od tih, slijedeći su izgubili živote:
Čačić Jago/Grga, 18, neoženjen, Široka Kula, išao u South Chicago, Illinois.
Čačić, Luka, 38, oženjen, Široka Kula, išao u South Chicago, Illinois.
Čačić, Manda, 21, neudata, Široka Kula, išla u South Chicago, Illinois.
Čačić, Marija, 30, neudata, Široka Kula, išla u South Chicago, Illinois.
Čalić, Jovo, 17, neoženjen, Breznik, išao u Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.
Čalić, Petar, 17, neoženjen, Brezik, išao u Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.
Čor, Bartol, 35, oženjen, Kričina, išao u Great Falls, Montana.
Čor, Ivan, 27, oženjen, Kričina, išao u Great Falls, Montana.
Čor, Ljudevit, 19, oženjen, Kričina, išao u St. Louis, Missouri.
Čulumović, Joso, 17, neoženjen, Lipova Glavica, išao u Hammond, Indiana. (On se ukrcao pod  imenom Ećimović.)
Dakić, Branko, 19, Gornji Miholjac, nije poznato u koje mjesto je išao. Njegovi posmrtni ostaci, ako su i pronađeni, nisu nikad dentificirani.
Dika, Mirko, 17, neoženjen, Podgora (Crikvenica?), išao u Vancouver, Kanada.
Dimić, Jovan, 42, oženjen, Ostrovica, išao u Red Lodge, Montana.
Draženović, Josip, 33, oženjen, Hrastelnica, išao u New York, NY. Njegovo tijelo je pronašao brod MacKay Bennett i položeno je u more 21. travnja 1912. Na njegovu tijelu je nađeno: lula, putovnica, krunica, 25 dolara i 5 kruna. (Na jednom mjesu se veli da mu je bilo 30 godina.)
Hendeković, Ignjac, 28, oženjen, Vagovina, išao u Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Putuje s Matildom               Petranec. Njegovo tijelo je pronašao brod MacKay Bennett i pokopano 10. svibnja 1912. u  katoličkom groblju Mount Olivet, Halifax, NS. Na njegovu tijelu je nađeno: nožić, novčanik s  12 dolara u papiru i u manjem novčaniku 72 centa, zatim 2 brodske karte trećeg razreda, broj 349245 za Matildu Petranec i broj 349243 za Toznai!! Hendoković.
Karajić, Milan, 30, oženjen, Vagovina, išao u Youngstown, Ohio.
Orešković, Jelka, 23, neudata, Konjsko Brdo, išla u South Chicago, Illinois. (Putuje s Lukom i Marijom Orešković.)
Orešković, Marija, 20, neudata, Konjsko Brdo, išla u South Chicago, Illinois. (Putuje s Lukom i  Jelkom Orešković. Marijna majka je kasnije primila £50 od Mansion House Titanic Relief Fund.)
Orešković, Luka, 20, oženjen, Konjsko Brdo, išao u South Chicago, Illinois. (Putuje s Marijom i  Jelkom Orešković.)
Pavlović, Štefo, 32, oženjen, Vagovina, išao u Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Petranec, Matilda, 28, udovica, Vagovina, išla u Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. (Putuje sa Ignjacom  Hendeković. Njezina putna karta je pronađena na tijelu g.  Hendekovića.
Pocrnić, Mate, 17, neoženjen, Bukovac, išao u South Chicago, Illinois. (Nekad je pisan i kao  “Pacruic”, “Pecruic” i “Pokrnic”.)
Pocrnić, Tomo, 24, oženjen, Bukovac, išao u South Chicago, Illinois. (Nekad je pisan i kao “Pacruic”,  “Pecruic” i “Pokrnic”.)
Smiljanić, Mile, 37, Pisač kod Udbine, nije poznato u koje mjesto je išao. Njegovi posmrtni ostaci, ako  su bili i pronađeni, nisu nikad dentificirani.
Stanković, Ivan, 33, neoženjen, Galgovo, išao u New York, New York. Na webu se može naći da je Stanković već prije bio u Americi, vradio se doma samo radi sređivanja papira oko imovine svoje pokojen žene i na povratku u Ameriku izgubio je život.
Strilić, Ivan, 27, oženjen, Široka Kula, išao u South Chicago, Illinois.
Turčin, Stjepan, 36, oženjen, Bratina, išao u Youngstown, Ohio.
Ovom popisu možemo dodati i ime svećenika benedektinca Josipa Perušića (Josef Peruschitz) koji je rođen 1871. u Njemačkoj (Bavarska) ali hrvatskog je podrijetla. On je putovao u Minnesotu da bi preuzeo dužnost ravnatelja tamošnje srednje škole. Poznato je da je odbio ući u čamac za spasavanje da bi dao prednost suputnicima da spase život.
***
Iz Bosne i Hercegovine
Bakić, Kerim, 26, oženjen, Bakić, išao u Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Bekić, Tido?, 38, oženjen, Bakić, Bosnia, išao u Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. (Prezime se navodi i kao Kekić.)
Sivić, Husein, 40, oženjen, Bakić, išao u Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. (Ponekad naveden i kao Husen Sivic.)
Posmrtni ostaci ove trojice, ako su i pronađeni, nikad nisu bili identificirani.
Preživjeli
Ivan Jalševac, 29, Topolovac. Žena mu Kata ostala je u njegovu rodnom selu. Išao je u New York, NY, ali poslije spašavanja pošao je u Galesburg, Illinois, gdje mu je živio prijatelj Franjo Karun. S vremenom Jalševac se vratio u Hrvatsku i umro je 1945. u rodnom selu.
Nikola Lulić, rođen 24. veljače 1883. u selu Konjsko Brdo u Lici. Pobjegao je iz austrijske vojske 1902. i otišao u Ameriku. Živio je u Chisholm, Minnesota i radio u rudniku “Alpena Mine”. U jesen 1911. vratio se u Hrvatsku posjetiti obitelj, ženu Marta i dvoje djece. Budući da je već bio nekoliko godina u Americi, kad je pošao nazad služio je kao neslužbeni vodič drugim iseljenicima koji su mu za uzvrat platili putnu kartu. Ukrcao se na Titanik u Southamptonu i pošao u Minnesotu. Poslije brodoloma, Lulića je sapsila Carpathia, na kojoj je bio velik broj hrvatski mornara.
Po dolasku u New York, Lulić je umjesto u Minnesotu otišao ujaku Ross-u Rosiniću u Chicago, Illinois. Poslije Prvog svjetskog rata Lulić se vratio u svoj rodni kraj i bavio se poljoprivredom. Ali, kako se od tog nije moglo živjeti, išao je više puta između dva svjetska rata u Francusku kao sezonski radnik.
Lulića žena Marta je umrla dosta rano i on se sam brinio za brojnu djecu iz svoja dva braka. U starijim danima živio je dosta samotno i umro je 1962. u Perušiću, u kući svoje najmlađe kćerke Mare.(*Milan Gnjatović, u pjesmi “Potonuće broda Titanica”/Narodna američka Pjesmarica. St. Louis: Ivan Sikočan, 1913., spominje ga netočno kao Nikola Lukić.)
Mara Osman, 31, udata*, Vagovina, išala je u Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Poslije brodoloma spasio ju je brod Carpathia. Nakon dolaska u New York (18. lipnja 1912.) otišla je sestri Mrs. Rudolph Paulovich u Steeltonu, Pennsylvania. (*U imigrantskom uredu stoji da je neudata i da je Poljakinja. Gore spomenuti Gnjatović u svojoj pjesmi navodi Maru kao jednu od troje Hrvata koji su preživjeli tragediju Titanika.
O Mari Osman mogu se na webu pronaći, među ostalim, i slijedeće pojedinosti. Rođena je1881., udala se za Miška Banski 1904. godine i da su imali sina Franju. (Drugi opet pišu da su imali tri sina.) Izgleda da se rastala od muža i putovala je pod djevojačkim prezimenom Osman. Sin Franjo joj se kasnije pridružio u Americi i umro je u Kaliforniji 1980. Po dolasku u Ameriku Mara se preudala i navodno je umrla 1938. u državi Wisonsin. Što je sve od ovog točno, nismo sigurni.
Ante Čuvalo

SINKING OF THE TITANIC – 100TH ANNIVERSARY

1SINKING OF THE TITANIC – 100TH ANNIVERSARY

The following article was published in the “Croatian Chronicle – Chicago”, No. 1, Spring 2002, under the title “Sinking of the Titanic – 90th Anniversary.”  On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Titanic tragedy, we are bringing here the same text with a few small changes.
***
April 15, 2012 marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the famous Titanic liner.  Among 1,316 passengers, out of which 818 died in this horrific tragedy that stunned the world, there were also a number of Croatians and/or people coming from Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.  The following among them lost their lives:

Čačić Jago/Grga
, 18, single, Široka Kula, destination South Chicago, Illinois.
Čačić, Luka, 38, married, Široka Kula, destination South Chicago, Illinois.
Čačić, Manda, 21, single, Široka Kula, destination South Chicago, Illinois.
Čačić, Marija, 30, single, Široka Kula, destination South Chicago, Illinois.
Čalić, Jovo, 17, single, Breznik, destination Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.
Čalić, Petar, 17, single, Brezik, destination Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.

Čor, Bartol
, 35, married, Kričina, destination Great Falls, Montana.
Čor, Ivan, 27, married, Kričina, destination Great Falls, Montana.
Čor, Ljudevit, 19, married, Kričina, destination St. Louis, Missouri.

Čulumović, Joso
, 17, single, Lipova Glavica, destination Hammond, Indiana. (He boarded under his “calling-name” of Ećimović.)

Dakić, Branko
, 19, Gornji Miholjac, destination unknown.  His body, even if found, was never  identified.
Dika, Mirko, 17, single, Podgora (Crikvenica?), destination Vancouver, Canada.
Dimić, Jovan, 42, married, Ostrovica, destination Red Lodge, Montana.

Draženović, Josip
, 33, married, Hrastelnica, destination New York, NY. His body was recovered by the MacKay Bennett (#51) and was buried at sea on 21 April 1912. “Pipe bowl, passport, set of beads [rosary], $25.00 and 5 krones” were found on his body. (At another place it is stated that his age was 30.)
Hendeković, Ignjac, 28, married, Vagovina, destination Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  He traveled with Matilda Petranec.  His body was recovered by the MacKay Bennett (#306) and buried at Mount Olivet Roman Catholic Cemetery, Halifax, NS on May 10, 1912.  “One knife, purse with $12 in notes; small purse with 72 cents; two third class tickets, No. 349245 for Matilda Petram (Petranec) and No. 349243 for Toznai!! Hendeković” were found on his body.
Karajić, Milan, 30, married, Vagovina, destination Youngstown, Ohio.
Orešković, Jelka, 23, single, Konjsko Brdo, destination South Chicago, Illinois. (Boarded together with her relatives Luka and Marija Orešković.)
Orešković, Marija, 20, single, Konjsko Brdo, destination South Chicago, Illinois. (Boarded together with her relatives Luka and Jelka Orešković.  Marija’s mother received a grant of £50 from the Mansion House Titanic Relief Fund.

Orešković, Luka
, 20, married, Konjsko Brdo, destination South Chicago, Illinois. (Boarded together with Marija and Jelka Orešković.)

Pavlović, Štefo
, 32, married, Vagovina, destination Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Petranec, Matilda, 28, widow, Vagovina, destination Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. (Boarded with Ignjac Hendeković.  Her ticket was found on the body of Mr Hendeković.
Pocrnić, Mate, 17, single, Bukovac, destination South Chicago, Illinois.  (Sometimes listed as “Pacruic”, “Pecruic” i “Pokrnic”.)
Pocrnić, Tomo, 24, married, Bukovac, destination South Chicago, Illinois.  (Sometimes listed as “Pacruic”, “Pecruic” i “Pokrnic”.)
Smiljanić, Mile, 37, Pisač near Udbina, destination unknown.  His body, even if found, was never identified.

Stanković, Ivan
, 33, single, Galgovo, destination New York, NY.  Some sources on the web claim that Stanković was in America previously.  Supposedly, after the death of his wife he returned to take care of some legal matters dealing with her inheritance, and on the way back he lost his life.
Strilić, Ivan, 27, married, Široka Kula, destination South Chicago, Illinois.
Turčin, Stjepan, 36, married, Bratina, destination Youngstown, Ohio.
To this above list we are adding also the name of a Benedictine priest, Josip Perušić (Josef Peruschitz), born in 1871, Bavaria, Germany, but who was of Croatian heritage.  He was on the way to assume the position of a principal in a Catholic High School in Minnesota.  Survivors of the Titanic tragedy witnessed how he refused to enter a safety boat in order to give others the chance to save their lives.
People from Bosnia and Herzegovina who lost their lives:
Bakić, Kerim, 26, married, Bakić, destination Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Bakić, Tido?, 38, married, Bakić, Bosnia, destination Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. (Mr Bakić’s last name is often written as Rekić or Kekić, but most probably it is Bakić.)
Sivić, Husein, 40, married, Bakić, destination Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. (Sometimes listed as “Husen Sivic”.)
The bodies of the above passengers from Bosnia, even if recovered, were never identified.
CROATIAN SURVIVORS

Ivan Jalševac
, age 29, from Topolovac.  He was married to Kata, who stayed behind in his native village.  He was on his way to New York, NY.  After he was rescued, however, he traveled to Galesburg, Illinois, where he had a friend, Franjo Karun.  Later, he returned to Croatia and died in 1945, according to some sources.
Nikola Lulić was born on February 24, 1883 in the village of Konjsko Brdo, Lika, Croatia.  In 1902, while serving in the Austrian Army, he deserted and immigrated to America.  He went to Chisholm, Minnesota and worked as a miner in the “Alpena Mine”.  In autumn 1911, he came back to Croatia for half a year to visit his family.  At this time, he was already married for the second time.  His second wife, Marta, and his two children lived in Croatia at the time.  When it was time to go back to America he served as an unofficial companion to other immigrants who paid his ticket.  He helped them with translation and advised them of what to expect during the voyage and after their arrival in America.  He boarded the Titanic at Southampton and was on the way to Minnesota.  Mr Lulic survived the sinking and was rescued by the Carpathia.
After arriving in New York, Lulić went to his uncle Ross Rosinić at 118 Tocence (Torrence?) Avenue, Chicago, Illinois.  His Americanized name was “Nicola Lulich”.  After the First World War, Lulić returned to Croatia and earned his living as a farmer, but sometimes he also worked in France as a seasonal worker between the two World Wars.
His wife Marta died long before he did, so he alone had to look after the children of his two marriages.  In his older days, he secluded himself more and more from his fellow villagers of Konjsko Brdo.  Nikola Lulić died in 1962 in Perušić, at the age of 79, in the house of his youngest daughter Mara.  (Milan Gnjatović, in his poem Potonuće broda Titanica – Narodna američka Pjesmarica. St. Louis: Ivan Sikočan, 1913, lists his name as Nikola Lukić, but it should have been Lulić.)

Mara Osman
, age 31, married, from Vagovina, Croatia, boarded the Titanic at Southampton and she was going to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  She was rescued by the Carpathia.  After arriving in New York (June 18, 1912), she went to her sister, Mrs. Rudolph Paulovich, at Steelton, Pennsylvania.  (The Immigration Officer incorrectly lists her as single woman and her nationality as Polish.  She is also listed sometimes as “Maria Osman”.  Gnjatović, in his above mentioned poem, lists her as one of the three Croatian survivors.)
Some sources tell us that she was born in 1881 and she married Miško Banski in 1904.  They had a son, Franjo. (Other sources state that they had three sons.)  Whatever the case, it seems that she left her husband and went to America, traveling under her maiden name, Osman.  Later, her son Franjo joined her in the US and he died in California in 1980.  Mara eventually remarried and, supposedly, she died in Wisconsin in 1938.  Details about her life in America are not know to us.
Ante Čuvalo

The Austro-Hungarian Fleet under the Croatian Flag 1918 – Dr. Matthew Zvonimir Markotić

THE AUSTRO-HUNGARIAN FLEET UNDER THE CROATIAN FLAG IN 1918

Dr. Matthew Zvonimir Markotić

Introductory remark
Matthew Zvonimir Markotić was born in Slavonski Brod in 1929. He came to the United States after World War II and, among other achievements, he received a doctorate of jurisprudence from Harvard University. History was his hobby. He died in California in 2001.  He gave me a copy of the posted article in the 1990s and, although it needs a critical update, I’m sure a number of readers will find it interesting, and even useful.
A. Č.

***

With the enthusiastic support of the Crown Prince, Franz Ferdinand, the battle fleet of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy underwent major ship construction during the immediate years before World War I, with the result that the fleet entered the war not only with an increased number of ships, but also with improved technical quality and firepower.
During the war the monarchy ‘s battle fleet consisted of three battleships of he Radetzky class (14,226 tones, 20.5 knots, and four 12 inch guns), four battleships of the Viribus Unitis class (20,000 tons, 20.5 knots, nine 12 inch guns), and nine older and smaller warships of the Erzherzog, Hapsburg and Monarch classes (1).  Support ships included two armored cruisers, 2 light cruisers, 3 older cruisers, 18 destroyers, 90 torpedo boats, and 5 submarines (2).
The fleet was not strong enough to compete with the British or even the French fleet.  However, the British fleet remained primarily in the Atlantic, and the French fleet, and the few British units not only in the Atlantic, were mostly based in the Eastern Mediterranean.  The Austro-Hungarian battle fleet’s main opponent was the Italian fleet, and the monarchy’s fleet was sufficiently powerful to face and even to keep in check the Italians.  Based mainly in Pula, Kotor, and Sibenik, in the Northwestern Adriatic, off the coast of Albania, and in the Straits of Taranto.

The battle fleet was manned by all nationalities comprising the monarchy but the plurality of the naval personnel were Croatian.  Ten percent of the officers and a third of the enlisted men were Croats (3).  These Croats were generally loyal to the Emperor Franz Joseph, and to his successor, Emperor Karl.  At the same time, they were Croat nationalist, and most of them hoped that the dual monarchy would be transformed into a multinational federation with Croatia becoming a sovereign kingdom independent of Hungary.
The hardship of the war, the military defeats, and the unprecedented losses in killed and wounded soldiers lessened the Croats’ faith in the Emperor and his government.  By 1917, it became evident to all but the most fanatic supporters of the monarchy that the Austro-Hungarian empire and its allies were losing the war.  There were serious shortages of food and clothing not only among the civilian population but also among the military.  These shortages increased in 1918.  There was a mutiny by sailors in Kotor in February of 1918, which was brutally suppressed (4).
By October of 1918, it became clear not only that Austro-Hungary had lost the war, but also that the monarchy could not be saved and that the Habsburg empire was coming to an end.
On October 18, 1918, the American President Wilson, through a diplomatic note signed by the Secretary of State Robert Lansing, advised the Austro-Hungarian Government that in accordance with the President’s 14 Points, various nationalities of the monarchy would be given the opportunity for autonomous development (5).  In effect, the note signaled the breakup of the monarch.  On October 28, Emperor Karl requested an armistice from President Wilson (6).
In Pula, aboard the fleet flagship Viribus Unitis (7), the fleet commander, Admiral Miklós Horthy, found it increasing difficult to maintain order and discipline in the fleet (8).
On October 23, there were disturbances and fights between Croatian and Hungarian sailors in Rijeka. Shots were fired (9). On the fleet flagship Viribus Unitis there were incidents of disobedience and increasing chaos.  A young officer on the Viribus Unitis, Lieutenant Commander Alexander Milošević,  became so upset by the events that he shot himself on October 28.  In a suicide note he expressed hope that his death would help bring order and discipline to the fleet (10). The next day a mob tried to storm the officers’ club in Pula.  On October 30, LCDR Milošević was given a military burial.  The ceremony at the grave was the last common action of the multinational crew of the Viribus Unitis (11).
In the meantime, events in Zagreb accelerated the collapse of the monarchy.  The Croatian parliament, the Sabor, declared on October 29, 1918, the constitutional connection with Hungary terminated, and proclaimed Croatia, Slavonia and Dalmatia and independent state (12).  The Sabor then went on to give executive authority in the new state to the National Council in Zagreb.
The day before, the sailors of the Viribus Unitis and representatives of other ships met in Pula and elected a sailors’ committee with intent to take over the fleet.  Commander Metod Koch, a Slovene, was elected by the sailors as a local representative of the National Council (13).
Commander Koch’s position was approved later by the admiralty of shore in the hope that he would act as a liaison officer with the by then almost mutinous sailors.
By October 28, the Austro-Hungarian high command in Baden was in touch with the Italian military headquarters in Padua.  Terms of armistice were negotiated, and it became evident to the Austrians that most of their battle fleet would have to be surrendered to the Allies, primarily to the Italians.  Emperor Karl decided on that day to turn over the battle fleet to the Croats in the hope of preventing its surrender to Italy.
Appropriate telegraphic messages were sent by the high command in Baden to the National Council in Zagreb, to the admiralty in Pula, and to Admiral Horthy aboard the Viribus Unitis (14).  Similar orders providing for the turning over of the fleet to the National Council were also sent to the naval authorities in Kotor, Šibenik, Triest, and Rijeka (15).
Another telegraph was sent to Admiral Horthy in Pula on October 30 releasing all sailors who were not south Slavs from duty, and ordering their return to their homes (16).
In Zagreb the National Council appointed Dr. Ante Tresić-Pavičić, Vilim Bukšek, and Dr. Ivan Čok as its representatives to receive the battle fleet from Admiral Horthy.  These three were joined in Pula by local representatives Dr. Lovro Skailer, Dr. Mirko Vratović, Lacko Križ, Mario Krmpotić, and Commander Metod Koch (17).
At about 9 a. m. on October 31, Admiral Horthy received these representatives on board of the Viribus Unitis.  With tears in his eyes the fleet commander signed the transfer agreement.  At the request of the Admiral, the actual transfer ceremony was postponed until late afternoon.  Captain Janko Vuković pl. Podkapelski, the commanding officer of the Viribus Unitis, and one of the most senior Croatian naval officers, was appointed the new fleet commander (18).  Captain Vuković had a distinguished naval record.  For instance, on December 20, 1917 he had led a squadron of warships to the shores of Cortellazzo to bombard the Italian batteries (19).  The sortie was successful (20).
At proximately 4 o’clock that afternoon the formal ceremony turning over the fleet to the Croats took place on the quarter deck of the Viribus Unitis.  Admiral Horthy and his officers were saddened while the Croats were jubilant.  To the sound of bugles the red-white-red flag of the old monarchy was hauled down for the last time, and the Croatian red-white-blue flag was hauled up the mast not only of the Viribus Unitis but also to the masts of hundreds of other naval and merchant ships in the harbor of Pula.  The ships’ bands played the Croatian national anthem, “Lijepa naša Domovina…”, and 21 gun salutes followed (21).  Admiral Horthy left the flagship at 4:30 p. m. carrying with him a portrait of the Emperor Franz Joseph, the ship’s ceremonial ensign, and his personal flag.  He was visibly moved as he left the ship for the last time (22).
That night the ships in the harbor of Pula were illuminated for the first time since the beginning of the war, and there were celebrations on ships and on shore (23).  Similar events took place in all other Adriatic ports abroad the units of the fleet.  The Croatian flags flew everywhere, and the joy of the people was immense.
Early next morning, November 1, 1918, at about six o’clock, two Italian naval officers, Medical Lieutenant Raffaele Paolucci and Major of Naval Engineers Raffalle Rossetti, acting as what a later generation would call frogmen, entered the harbor of Pula swimming in rubber suits and pushing a torpedo-like mine (24),  they attached the mine to the hull of the Viribus Unitis, just below the accommodation ladder leading to the main deck (25).  A timing device was fixed to explode the mine.  As they were swimming away, they were seen by a petty officer in a picket boat.  They were hauled aboard  the boat and taken on the board the flagship.  There they were brought before Captain Vuković.  In his presence the two Italian officers became increasingly nervous, and finally stated that the ship would explode at any time.  Captain Vuković issued orders to abandon ship.  He was concerned with the safety of the two Italians, shook their hands telling them that they were brave men, and arranged for them to be taken ashore immediately (26).
True to the naval tradition and with great personal courage Captain Vuković went up to the ship’s bridge to await the explosion.*  When it came a few minutes later, Viribus Unitis sank, and Captain Vuković and about 50 Croatian sailors went down with the ship (27).  Such was the end of the first battleship to fly the Croatian flag (28).
After they were taken ashore, the two Italian officers claimed that they did not know that the Viribus Unitis had been turned over to the Croats.  Their story is credible since the Italian naval command expected to acquire all Austro-Hungarian battleships, and sinking one of them made no sense.
After the sinking by Italians of the Viribus Unitis, and of the merchant ship Wien during the same night, the Croats were incensed.  They believed that they and the newly independent state proclaimed in Zagreb were not enemies of the Western Allies but their friends and associates.  On November 1, 1918, Commander Metod Koch sent a telegram to the commander of the Allied fleet complaining of the sinking of the two ships, and requesting protection by the U.S. fleet or a fleet of a nation not having a geographic interest in south Slavic territory (29).  Unfortunately this transparent reference to Italy was not effective since by the Treaty of London of 1915 Great Britain and France were under obligation to satisfy Italy’s ambitions in the Adriatic.
The response came next day in the form of telegram signed by Lloyd George, Orlando, Clemenceau, and Col. House.  While it was friendly in tone, it directed the fleet to proceed immediately to Corfu under a white flag, and surrender to the supreme command of allied forces (30).  To add insult to injury, a few days later the Italian naval command ordered the fleet to take down the Croatian flag since the allies did not recognize the flag as one of the interdependent state (31).
Despite emotional protests by Croatian sailors, part of the fleet went to Corfu under the white flag.  The rest of the fleet remained in port, and was gradually taken over by the Allies, most by Italians.  The Croatian flag disappeared from the Adriatic.  The once powerful battle fleet was distributed to the Allies.  The new state of the Kingdom of SCS (later known as Yugoslavia), proclaimed on December 1, 1918 in Belgrade, received only a few coastal defense ships.
*According to another source:
“The explosion did not happen at 6:30 as predicted and Vuković returned to the ship with many sailors (believing mistakenly that the Italians had lied). He therefore remained on his ship and went down with her and 300–400 of her crew when the mines exploded shortly afterwards at 6:44. Following the explosion, the battleship sank in 15 minutes.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Viribus_Unitis

See Assault on the Viribus Unitis http://www.worldwar1.com/sfvu.htm
brod
(1) Paul G. Halpern, The Naval War in the Mediterranean. Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 1987, p. 7.
(2) Ibid. p. 7.
(3) Arthur J. May, The Passing of the Habsburg Monarchy, 1914-1918. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1966, p. 780.
(4) Hans Hugo Sokol and Theodor Braun, Ősterreich–Ungarns Seekrieg 1914-1918. Graz: Akademische Druck und Verlagsanstalt, 1967, Vol. 2, pp. 705-707.
(5) Ferdo Šišić, Dokumenti o postanku Kraljevine Srba, Hrvata i Slovenaca. Zagreb: Matica Hrvatska, 1920, p. 179.
(6) Ibid. p. 189.
(7) Named after the motto of the Emperor Franz Joseph.
(8) Admiral Horthy later became regent and ruler of Hungary.
(9) Sokol, Seekrieg, p. 715.
(10) Ibid., p. 721.
(11) Ibid., p. 721.
(12) May, Passing, pp. 779-780.
(13) Petar Pekić, Propast Austro-ugarske monarhije i postanak nasljednih država. Subotica: Globus, 1937, p. 272.
(14) Bogdan Krizman, Raspad Austro-Ugarske i stvaranje jugoslavenske države. Zagreb: Školska knjiga, 1977, p. 105.
(15) Ferdo Čulinović, 1918. na Jadranu. Zagreb: Glas rada, 1951, p. 211.
(16) Pekić, Propast, p. 273.
(17) Ibid., p. 273.
(18) Miklós Horthy, Memoirs. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1957, p. 92. [Memoirs was published by R. Speller in New York, 1957.]
(19) Halpern, Naval War, p. 411.
(20) While a Croatian patriot, Captain Vuković was not universally favored for his new command because he had accompanied earlier in the year Count Tisza on his trip to Sarajevo to rally the Bosnians to the monarchy. Captain Vuković was under orders and had no choice. See, Henry Baerlein, The Birth of Yugoslavia, London: Leonard Parson, 1922, Vol. 2, p. 20.
(21) Ibid., p. 20.
(22) Gordon Brook-Shepherd, November 1918. Boston-Toronto: Little, Brown, 1981, p. 316.
(23) Halpern, Naval War, p. 567.
(24) Ibid. p. 567.
(25) Baerlein, Birth, p. 21.
(26) Ibid., p. 21.

(27) Horthy, Memoirs, p. 92. See also Baerlein, Birth, p. 21-22.

(28) Viribus Unitis not only played a role in the ending of the war but also in its beginning in 1914. It carried the Crown Prince, Franz Ferdinand, and his wife from Triest to Metkovic on their fateful journey to Sarajevo. After their assassination, their coffins were carried back to Triest on the flagship. See Horthy, Memoirs, p. 317.

(29) D. Janković – B. Krizman, Gradja o stvaranju Jugoslovenske države. Beograd: Kultura, 1964, 2 vol., p. 442.

(30) Ibid., p. 455.

(31) Krizman, Raspad, p. 144.

Fra Bosiljko Bekavac i hrvatski antikomuistički i antijugoslavenski gerilci iz okolice Kiseljaka poslje II. svjetskog rata – dva pisana svjedočanstva

Nekoliko napomena

Kad se spominje fra Bosiljka Bekavca treba imati na umu da su u Americi živjela dva Bosiljka Bekavca. Prvi Bosiljko (1870.-1959.) bio je fratar provincije Bosne Srebrene, koji se sekularizirao i potom (1900.) došao u Ameriku. Bio je vrlo djelatan i ugledan svećenik među tadašnjim hrvatskim iseljenicima u nekoliko gradova države Pensylvanije, kao i jedan od vodećih hrvatskih svećenika u Americi svog vremena.
Drugi fra Bosiljko u Ameriku je stigao 1953. i nikad nije djelovao na hrvatskim iseljeničkim župama. Bio je poznati simpatizer jugoslavizma i titoizma pa mu se nije bilo ni moguće družiti s hrvatskim svećenicima u Americi, kao ni s ogromnom većinom hrvatskog naroda, nego je utočište nalazio u američkim župama. Bio je nekoliko godina urednik Zajedničara, službenog glasila Hrvaske bratske zajednice, koju su tada mnogi smatrali “sedmom republikom” SFRJ-a. Pod njegovim uredništvom Zajedničar je napadao sve što je disalo hrvatskim domoljubnim duhom, uključujući i vodeće ljude iz tadašnjeg hrvatskog nacionalnog pokreta, Hrvatskog proljeća.
Ovdje donosimo in memorima o Bosiljku Bekavcu kojeg je napisao I. Gavran u Bosni Srebrenoj 1982. a može ga se naći na internetu https://www.google.com/search?q=bosiljko%20bekavac%20franjevacki%20leksikon&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&source=hp&channel=np
BEKAVAC, Bosiljko, ml. publicist (Obrenovac kod Konjica, 11. XI. 1906. — Pittsburgh, 13. IX. 1982.). — Sin je težaka Stipe i domaćice Jele rođ. Tomić. Osnovnu školu završio je u Seonici (1904.-1918.), gimnaziju u Visokom (1922.-1928., 1929.-1931.), filozofsko-teološki studij u Sarajevu (1931.-1935.), Franjevac je postao 1928., a svećenik 1925. Službovao je kao kapelan i vikar u Fojnici (1935.-1937.), kapelan u Kreševu (1937.-1938.), župnik u Osovi (1938.-1940.), Novom Šeheru (1940.-1946.) i Kiseljaku (1949.-1953.) te gvardijan u Kreševu (1946.-1949.). Godine 1953. pošao je u Ameriku kod strica Bosiljka, koji se tada nalazi o u Rankinu, Pa, kod Pittsburgha. Ostao je u Americi te služio kao kapelan u župi Presvetog Trojstva u Columbia, Pa, (1953.- 1954.), zatim u Centralia, Pa, (1954.-1962.). Godine 1962. izabran je za urednika Zajedničara, glasila Narodne hrvatske zajednice u USA, ali je uredništvo preuzeo početkom travnja 1963. kad je dobio američko državljanstvo. Uređivao je Zajedničar (1963.-1971.) u duhu zajedništva naših naroda. Desetak posljednjih godina djelovao je kao kapelan u crkvi St. Mary of Mercy u Pittsburghu. Bekavac je kroz čitavo vrijeme svog boravka u Americi održavao veze s provincijom i domovinom šaljući visočkoj gimnaziji knjige i pomažući provinciju na druge načine. Još kao gimnazijalac surađivao je u listu visočkih sjemeništaraca Cvijetu (1926.-1931.), zatim u Zajedničaru (1962.-1971.) i Iseljeničkom kalendaru Bosne i Hercegovine (1967.-1973.). LIT.: I. GAVRAN: Fra Bosiljku Bekavcu — In memoriam. Bosna Srebrena, 33(1982.) 6, str. 239-246., A. Kovačić
Uz ovaj in memoriam napomenuti je jedan ispravak i nekolike druge “sitnice”. Ispravak, postao je svećenik 1935., a ne 1925. Zatim, kaže se da je “pošao kod strica Bosiljka”, ali vladalo je opće mišljenje među svećenicima u Americi da ga je Udba “sklonila” u Ameriku radi opasnosti koja mu je prijetila u kiseljačkom kraju i ,zatim, namjestila za urednika Zajedničara. Drugo, pisac veli da je Zajedničar glasilo Narodne hrvatske zajednice. Pravo ime te ustanove je Hrvatska bratska zajednica. Također, pisac ističe da je list uređivao “u duhu zajedništva naših naroda”. Valjda je to pohvala i zahvala Bekavcu od strane pisca tih redaka. Nadalje, hvalospjevi Bosiljku Bekavcu su se mogli donedavno naći na internetu http://zupa-podhum-zitace.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3&Itemid=9, ali iz nekih razloga taj portal je nestao.
Ovdje donosimo dva dokumenta koji govore o fra Bosiljku Bekavcu. Našao sam ove izjave u ostavštini mog pokojnog strica fra Ljube (1908. – 1975.), višegodišnjeg urednika tjednika Danica u Chicagu. Premda se ovi iskazi (kao i usmena predaja u kiseljačkom kraju) u nekim detaljima razlikuju, one ukazuju na činjenicu da je fra Bosiljko Bekavac odigrao žalosnu i tragičnu ulogu u poslijeratnim godinama tog kraja.
Gospodin Josip Rukčić je, hvala Bogu, još živ i unatrag nekoliko mjeseci (12. ožujka 2011.) je potvrdio g. Krešimiru Mišetiću iz Chicaga autentičnost i sadržaj svog iskaza. U istom gradu (St. Louis, Missouri) živi i Josipov prijatelj i nekadašnji kolega uznik, g. Mato Borović, koji je bio izravna žrtva Bekavčeve izdaje. Gospodin Borović, iako u 87. godini života, i nakon dugih uzničkih i emigrantskih godina još je krepak i lucidan. U telefonskom razgovoru u ožujku ove (2011.) godine s g. Mišetićem potvrdio je kako je on, zajedno s Vinkom Dujmovićem te Ivom i Jurom Galićem, išao na povjerljive sastanke i savjetovanja kod fra Bosiljka Bekavca. Nakon nekoliko sastanaka ponovno su po dogovoru došli u župni stan i, uz Bekavca, našli su još petoricu “fratara”, “simpatizera križara”. Ali kad su došli na slijedeći zakazani sastanak, nisu mogli ni sanjati da će im to biti posljednji. Naime, uz Bekavca, u fratarskom habitu, druga petorica “fratara” ovaj put bili su u civilnom odijelu i odmah su se bacili na gerilce te ih uhitili.
U jednom od dokumenata koji donosimo govori se o Anti Brkljančiću, a u drugom o Brkljači. Zapravo je riječ o Anti Brkljačiću.
Onima koje pobliže zanima hrvatska antijugoslavenska i antikomunistička gerila u Bosni i Hercegovini poslije Drugog svjetskog rata preporučujemo: Dr. Ivo Lučić, “Hrvatska protukomunistička gerila u Bosni i Hercegovini od 1945. do 1951”. Časopis za suvremenu povijest, br. 3, 2010., 631-670.

Ante Čuvalo

Dva svjedočanstva – prijepis i preslik

POVJERLJIVO NIJE ZA ŠTAMPU
Zbog ljudi koji su u Jugosl.
Pa mi (sic!) mogli stradati!

Iskaz bivseg Krizara Josipa Rukčića o slučaju Rev. Bosiljka Bekavca

15. XI. 1963.

Dragi velečasni!
Prošlo je dosta vremena kako sam primio od Vas dva pisma, pa Vas molim za izvinjenje.  Bilo je više razloga zašto Vam nisam odgovorio kako ste mi pisali.  Vi trazite, da Vam po mogućnosti, koliko ja znam, opišem slučaj Bekavca Fra Bosiljka.  Ja sam zatvoren i osudjen 1947. god. za Križarsku organizaciju u Sarajevu, koja je suradjivala sa grupom Križara pod zapovjedništvom Ante Brkljančića (Brkljačić-sic!) i Stjepana Šimića.  Po mom dolasku u Zenicu, ja sam uvjek nastojao, da čujem što ima na terenu oko Fojnice i Kreševa.  To sam mogao doznati ve-inom od ljudi, koji su osudjivani za suradnju sa Križarima.  Onda najedamput 1950. god. dobio sam novine svakodašnje sa velikim naslovom, da je uhićena cijela organizacija sa Šimićem i Brkljančićem (Brkljačićem!) na čelu.  To je pisalo u junu 1950., a sudjenje je počelo u septembru iste godine.  Pratili smo sudjenje preko novina i čitali osudu: Šimić i Brkljančić (Brkljačić) na kaznu vješanjem, a Tuka Anto, Liješnjić Jure i Vidović Ivo na kaznu strijeljanjem.  Drugo ništa nisam znao, ali jednog dana Oktobra 1950, došli su transportom u Zenicu novi osudjenici a mi „stari“ se odma interesujemo zašto je ko sudjen.  Kad smo doznali za Šimićevu grupu, meni je bilo drago, da ću moći doznati iz prve ruke sve pojedinosti.  Odma nisam mogao jer su dečki morali ići u staklaru (karantena), 6 tjedana, a poslije njenoga izlaska, ja sam imao sreću, da oni, ti dečki, budu dodijeljeni u moju sobu.  Za prvo vrijeme nisu ništa smjeli pričati, a pitali su ko ima od Kiseljaka, i, kada su se upoznali sa mnom, i dobro se sprijateljili, oni su meni počeli onda da pričaju stvar, kako je tekla, koja nažalost strašno tereti „Fra“ Bekavaca.  Sve su mi pričali, kako su suradjivali sa Križarima, ali sve preko Kiseljačkog župnika, u ono vrijeme Bekavca.  Ovi dečki se zovu Mato Borović, Ivo Galić i Vinko Dujmović, svi sudjeni po 20 godina robije, ali se svi nalaze na slobodi, prvi u Kiseljaku, drugi u Kreševu, a treći na Stupu kod Sarajeva.  Kada su oni vidili, da mogu imati u mene potpuno povjerenje sve su mi pričali u najsitnije detalje.  Oni su se obraćali Bekavcu uvijek za vezu i on je davao njima instrukcije, šta će raditi.  Tako je jednog dana on, Bekavac, rekao njima da će uskoro doći iz inozemstva preko Zagreba križarski „predstavnici“.  Nitko nije mogao posumnjati u fra Bekavca.  Tako je jednog dana, maja ili juna, bio tajno sazvan sastanak na večer u 10 sati, u župskom stanu Bekavca, „sastanak sa Križarskim predstavnicima“, tako da su se ljudi sa zadovoljstvom odazvali pozivu Bekavca.  Na sastanak je preko veze od strane Bekavca pozvan i Brkljančić (Brkljačić).  Na sastanku su bili prisutni Brkljančić (Brkljačić), predsjedavajući, Bekavac, četiri predstavnika iz inozemstva, u stvari sve viši predstavnici Udbe iz Sarajeva.  Još na sastanku su bili osim spomenute trojice Borovića, Galića i Dujmovića, Iviš Anto, Grga Gagro, Jelaš Zvonko i dvojica strijeljanih Vidović i Liješnjić, sve iz sela Zagorica i Završja, samo Jelaš, Iviš i Gagro iz Kiseljaka.  Na sastanku se raspravljalo o svemu.  Bekavac je rukovodio sastankom.  Davale su se instrukcije za rad i tražilo mišljenje od ljudi. Tako je traženo, tko bi se primio u slučaju napada na Kiseljak tko bi ubio predsjednika i sekretara odbora.  Te dužnosti su se na prijedlog Bekavca primili nesretni Lijšnjić i Vidović, što ih je koštalo života kasnije na sudu.  Taj je sastanak završen sa napomenom, da se slijedeći sastanak održi za petnaest dana, ali da se svakako pozove skupa sa Brkljančićem (Brkljačićem) i Šimić.  Tako je i bilo, samo što na idući sastanak nije pozvan Borović, Galić i Dujmović, nego samo Jelaš, Iviš i Gagro.  Šimić nije došao, jer je posumnjao u to.  Kada su došli na taj sastanak i, Udba, sastanak je počeo.  Bio je i Brkljančić (Brkljačić!), predsjedavao je Bekavac. Najedamput, za vrijeme sastanka, oni tobožnji ‘predstavnici’ su skočili na Brkljančića (Brkljačića), da ga savladaju.  Nastala je borba i on je bio savladan za vrijeme te borbe.  Bekavac je odmah skočio i stao na vrata.  Ovo mi je pričao Jelaš Zvonko, koji je bio prisutan toj sramotnoj izdaji Bekavca.  Odmah je tada unišla vojska i sve je prisutne hapsila osim Bekavca.  A pošto je Šmić znao za Brkljančićev (Brkljačićev) sastanak, oni su nešto morali učiniti, da opravdaju nepovratak Brkljančića (Brkljačića).  Zato su iste te noći inscenirali “borbu” kod Palške Ćuprije da izgleda kao da je Brkljančić (Brkljačić) bio napadnut i u borbi da je poginuo.  Pucali su par sati, onda su napravili grobnicu kao da su ga zakopali.  Pošto Bekavac nije bio odmah uhapšen, on je razglasio preko veze, da je Brkljančić (Brkljačić) poginuo, tako da bi se Šimić na to namamio.  To je i bilo tako.  On je sa svojom grupom bio došao da to provjeri.  Zasjeda je već čuvala taj grob.  Borba je trajala neko vrijeme i Šimić se je izvukao sa svojim ljudima.  Samo na povratku u šumi, zvanoj Berberuša opet udari na zasjedu.  U kratkoj borbi dvojica poginu i Šimć ranjen teško uhvaćen.  Poslije toga nastalo je hapšenje i raseljavanje.  Još je ostala u selu Zagorcima gimnazijalka Marica Hočevar.  Onda je Bekavac rekao Ivi Galiću i Vinku Dujmoviću neka je dovedu u župski stan, da će je on poslati u Djakovo kod časnih sestara.  Oni su je doveli k njemu.  Došla je Udba, odvela je u Sarajevo i bila odmah ubijena bez suda, tako da ne bi rekla, kako je uhićena.  A onda je bio hapšen i Bekavac sa ostalima.  Za vrijeme islijednje on je Bekavac bio vodjen iz ćelije u ćeliju, da ga vide ostali, da je i on hapšen.  A kada je došlo sudjenje, njega nije bilo nigdje.  On je pušćen na slobodu poslije toga.  Ja ne znam što je bilo s njime.  Ali po izlasku mom iz Zenice 1959, nisam odmah nigdje radio, pa sam šio odijela kad me neko zovne u kuću.  Tako sam šio dva odijela za fra Stjepana Buljana, sadašnjeg župnika u Kiseljaku.  On mi je dosta toga rekao, skoro isto kao što sam vam već napisao.  On je samo rekao za Bekavca da je jedan „gad“ zato što poslije svega što je napravio, šalje preko godine pakete službenicima Udbe, pakete sa prezentima.  Nisam mogao to vjerovati, ali nakon nekog vremena mene je pozvao šef Udbe zloglasni Duško Kopara i pitao me, bi li ti majstore meni sašio odijelo, i, ja sam otišao kod njega u stan da mu pravim odijelo.  Jednog dana dodje neki njegov službenik sa pisima (spisima – sic!).  On pročita i treba nešto da potpiše.  Izvadi nalivpero i potpisa.  Na to će njegov službenik reći: Šefe imate lijepo pero, gdje ste ga kupili.  On kaže, doslovno ovako: To je mi (mi je) poslao „naš“ Bekavac, a i ovaj štof što majstor radi i ovaj sat , pokaza na ruci.  Ja mislim da tome ne treba nikakov komentar tko je Bekavac.  Poslije sam opet radio kod zupnika 1960. u januaru i, jednu večer smo malo posjedili, pričali o svemu.  On mi je pričao o Euharističkom kongresu u Műnchenu i da je vidio Kasića Josipa tamo.  Te smo večeri pozvali i Jelača (Jelaša) Zvonka sa ženom na sijelo, pošto on stanuje odmah do župskog stana; u toj sobi, gdje smo sjedjeli.  Zvonko je rekao, evo u ovoj sobi je bio sastanak posljednji, kada je, kaže on, Udba skočila na Brkljančića (Brkljačića).  Bekavac je stao odmah na vrata da bude pripomoć druškanima; onda nam je opet sve pričao, kako je stvar tekla, još su dvi žrtve Bekavca, koje nisam naveo.  To je Stipe Blažević, umro u Zenici, i Pero Tuka, brat streljanog Tuke.  I još jedan slučaj što narod govori u Kreševu.  Boravio sam kod moga punca Barišić Zovke (Zvonke?), sada je pokojni, u razgovoru sam rekao da idem na ispovijed.  On je reka
o, idi dijete, samo se čuvaj da te fra Misilo ne ispovidi kao što je Bekavac ispovijedao.  Eto, dragi velečasni, šta je znam o Bekavcu.  Ovo je sve istina kako sam ja čuo, ne bi želio, da se igdje dadne ova izjava u janost (javnost), jer sam dobio pismo iz Austrije od moga susjeda, da mi je Mama u zatvoru od kada je Titio dolazio ovamo, i da još nije pusćena.  Ja sam spreman doći u Chicago kad god vi tamo mozete doći.  Nas ovdje ima osam zeničkih robijaša, a trojica bi došla sa mnom do vas na Drexler (Drexel), samo bi mogli nedjeljom, pa ako Vam nije ovo dosta, onda da se sastanemo u Chicagu.  To je sve, izvinite što nisam prije pisao, jer su mi oni iz Zajedničara govorili, da bi mogao biti vraćen, da Zajedničar ima novaca da plati sud i tome slično.  Drugo ništa, puno Vas pozdravlja skupa sa svojom familijom.

Josip Rukčić

Fra. BOSILJKO BEKAVAC

Rodjen je 11. XI. 1906. god. u Obrenovcu kotar Konjic.  Mladu misu sližio 6. 9. 1935. (nije jasno) god. u Podhumu, kotar Konjic.
Do svoje sedamnaeste godine, radio je kao sluga kod fratara u samostanu Kreševo.  Poslije toga, fratri su ga poslali u gimnaziju.  Kao bogoslov, družio se sa drugim bogoslovom Franjom Barišićem, rodom od Podhuma.  Ovaj je već tada pokazivao svoja protuvjerska uvjerenja i ovo prijateljstvo ostavilo je jaki utjecaj na B. Bekavaca.  Barišić je danas profesor u Beogradu.
Poslije bogoslovije B. Bekavac postaje kapelan u Kreševu a iza otslužene mlade Mise, postaje župnik u Osovi kod Žepča.  Iz Osove dolazi u Novi-šeher, pored Zavidovića.  Za vrijeme rata bio je u zatvoru iz kojeg je bio izbavljen po Stipi Križanoviću, ubijenom kasnije po jugo-komunistima.
Od 1946. god. Bekavac je župnik u Kiseljaku, kojega napušta 23. V. 1953. i odlazi u SAD.
Za vrijeme njegova boravka u Kiseljaku, Bekavac se povezuje sa ustanicima, koje tada zovu „Križari“ a koje su u tom kraju vodili Šimić i Brkljača (Brkljačić-sic!).  Poslije zdogovora sa UDBOM, B. Bekavac odlazi povremeno u šumu i okolna sela kao svećenik, vršeći svećeničke dužnosti, sa namjerom da bi što bolje i što više saznao o ustanicima.  Narod mu je vjerovao i pred njim je bio iskren.  Radi toga uspjelo mu je jednom nagovoriti Šimića, te su zajedno otišli u Sarajevo, pod izlikom nabavke oružja.  Sve sa znanjem UDBE, da bi Šimić i ostali stekli što veće povjerenje u Bekavca.
U isto vrijeme dva UDBA-ša, stanovala su u gornjem stanu župne kuće u Kiseljaku.  Ljudi za ovo nisu znali, ali su mještani čuli jauk i zapomaganje po noći iz gornjeg stana.  To su mučitelji UBDE odmah na samom mjestu mučili prevarene osobe, koje su poslije slali u druge zatvore.  Bekavac je narodu pričao, da se to ponekad po noći javljaju duhovi.
U taj župni stan B. Bekavac namamio je djevojku Dragicu, zaručnicu Šimića.  U tom su ju stanu mučili i od tuda odveli u Sarajevo, gdje su ju na kraju ubili.  Prije svoje smrti pok. Dragica uspjela je nekako napisati na zidu zatvorske ćelije i upozoriti, tko je Bekavac.  Drugi zatvorenici koji su poslije došli u tu ćeliju, to su čitali i prenosili dalje.
Isti B. Bekavac uspio je nagovoriti Šimića, da će ga ponovo voditi u Sarajevo.  Ovog puta UDBA je čekala kod Alipašin-mosta. Šimić je za vrijeme vožnje osjetio da je nešto sumnjivo i nastojao je pobjeći iz auta, ali Bekavac tjelesno jači od pok. Šimića bacio se na Šimića, uspio ga svladati te je Šimić završio na UDBI, gdje mu se zameo svaki trag.
Poslije hvatanja Šimića, UDBA uz pomoć Bekavca uvatila je 24 člana Šimićeve čete a preostala trojica od njih, uspjeli su pobjeći.  Poslije bijega otišli su na Crni Vrh u Zec planinu kod Pere Bilića.  Konačno otkriveni poginuli su u borbi a kod Bilića je tada pronadjen popis jataka.  Medju prvim jatacima, bio je stric B. Bekavca, Andrija Bekavac, kojeg su nakon hapšenja odveli u Konjic, gdje je poslije mučenja četvrti dan izdahnuo.
Uslijedilo je hapšenje jataka, radi čega je UDBA zatvorila oko tri stotine osoba iz uže i šire okolice Kiseljaka.  Neki od zatvorenih bili su pušteni kući nakon kraćeg preslušavanja a neki su osudjeni na duge godine robije.  Na dvadeset godina bili su otjerani u zatvor Zvonko Jelaš i Ivičević.  Trojica župljana iz Kiseljaka, tada su streljani.
Kad su osudjeni počeli pristizati kući, poslije izlaska iz zatvora, sve više ugrožavali su samog Bekavca.  Radi toga po naredjenju UDBE, Bekavac se sklanja u SAD, na 23. V. 1953. god.
UDBA je imala i previše podataka o privatnom životu Bekavca i radi toga poslužila se je i poslom ucjene.  Njegov privatni život, to je njegova stvar za koji odgovara kao svaki od nas pred Bogom, ali u ovom njegovom slučaju njegov nastrani tjelesni život, poslužio je UDBI.  Sama UDBA posjeduje fotografije, koje Bekavca kompromitiraju.  Posao kojeg je već davno primio Bekavac kao žbir i uhod, on taj posao obavlja i danas na zadovoljstvo svojih gospodara iz UDBE, kojima uz to još uvijek šalje i darove u novcu i paketima.  Ovo pismo pišem iz hrvatske Domovine, na molbu prijatelja.  Ako tražite dokaze, onda je tu narod iz cijele okolice i ostali iz Bekavčeve rodbine.  Mnogi o ovome šute a mrtvi ne govore a tko će nama živima na bilo kojem sudu ovo povjerovati.  Ima nas koji smo sve ovo spremni svjedočiti, jer nas iz ovih krajeva ima na radu vani.  Znadu za Bekavčev rad i ljudi oko Konjica, isto kao što znadu i njegovi poglavari i ostali fratri.  Istina je na našoj strani i sa njom djevojka Dragica i svi oni kojima je teške muke priuštio sam Bekavac.  Danas kada ljudske slabosti caruju, mi nismo klonuli jer znamo gdje je pravda.
Ovo Vam piše jedan od onih, koji je ostao na rodnoj hrvatskoj grudi.
Primite pozdrave’
ŽIVILA HRVATSKA’

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