This weblog is an online protest of Croatian patriots against the current Croatian government under the leadership of Dr. Ivo Sanader and Stipe Mesic who, in the name of democracy, wage a fruitless war against Croatian “fascists” by using the same fascist methods: police repression, destruction of monuments (Budak & Francetic), glorifying Tito’s butchers and curtailing the freedom of media.

subota, listopada 02, 2004

Pavelic: Ten Years of Struggle in the Homeland

Title: Pavelic: Ten Years of Struggle in the Homeland
Source: Vecernje List, January 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 1999.
Translated by Sinisa Djuric.

The following is a translation of a news article in the Croatian paper Vecernji List, serialized over the span of several days in January 1999. The author's sympathies are clear, though he quotes extensively Pavelic's own words from one of the multitude of "autobiographies" authorized by Pavelic's sole surviving sibling - his sister Visnja in Madrid, Spain. The article is presented unabridged.


by Zeljko Kruselj

The dream of Croatian autonomy was brutally shattered by Regent Aleksandar

Pavelic's Dozivljaji II, with the subtitle "Ten years of struggle in the homeland 1918-1929", begins with the description of repressive measures of Belgrade authorities against Croatian pro-statehood parties, in which the bloodshed of 5. December in Zagreb on Ban Jelacic Square had a significant role. The core of his "revolutionary organization" Pavelic sees in the group of Austro-Hungarian officers who believed after the end of World War I that Croatia "will become free and independent":

"Among them general staff colonels Stjepan Duic, Ivo Percevic and Slavko Kvaternik especially stood out. All three of them were known in the army of Austro-Hungarian Empire as officers of great abilities and courage. These three Croatian officers were at one time very much respected by the heir to the Habsburg throne, archduke Franz Ferdinand, who was killed by Serbians in 1914 in Sarajevo. The decision of archduke Franz Ferdinand to reform the Habsburg Empire in the form of trialism - which meant to completely equalize Croatia, Austria and Hungary in the great empire, was made after advices and influence of general - colonel, baron Stjepan Sarkotic, general Muhaljevic, colonels Duic and Percevic."

The first step - organizing the work abroad

"Their first step", Pavelic continues, "after the end of the war in 1918 was to immediately contact Dr. Horvat (Aleksandar, the president of Croatian Party of Rights - Z.K.). Owing to the fact that Dr. Horvat had already resigned because of well known events in October 1918, these officers met with me. In conversations we had in the office of Dr. Horvat I presented to them the political position of Croatia the way it appeared after the Overthrow and betrayal of the 'National Council'. We discussed about the possibility of action and came to the conclusion that at that moment not much could be done within the new state, the condition that might change in time, as soon as the initial storm is over. We agreed that it would be useful to try to work abroad. (...) We were aware that the Croatian people will not allow to be crushed under the Serbian yoke, even if there won't be any chances for the political struggle and success, commotion and revolutionary attempts will not be avoided. For this sort of activities an emigre central abroad could be of a great benefit.

"Colonels Stjepan Duic and Ivan Percevic decided to remain abroad and in a short period of time managed to settle in Graz and Viena; there they founded the Croatian Committee headed by general - colonel, baron Stjepan Sarkotic, the last chief of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

"Colonel Slavko Kvaternik in the first days, until 5. December - during the reign of the 'National Council', was prone to believe that Croatia will be given a certain autonomy, and that officers, who would wish so, would be accepted into the new army, while in the meantime there were rumors that Croatian officers will not be accepted. On those rumors colonel Kvaternik traveled to Belgrade and asked for an audience with the Serbian regent Aleksandar, to negotiate their acceptance into the army, which on the occasion of that audience Aleksandar solemnly promised. However, when he returned to Zagreb, he found a decree at his home, the regent's decree, by which he was informed the first, that his application to be accepted into the army is declined. Kvaternik quickly realized that all hopes of an autonomy were futile."

The ban on HSP activities

"When I started to re-organize the local party organization, among the party members several Croatian officers stood out with their decisiveness and zeal and especially with their revolutionary spirit. When we discussed about the needs and ways of actions, I told them in confidence about the existence of the mentioned committee in Viena. We have decided to form a revolutionary group which will contact the Committee. As the leader of that group Rudolf Vidak was elected, a man in his thirties, who stood out in the past with his activities in our party even before the war. He was persecuted, imprisoned and sentenced to two years of prison. I had confidence in him, because while I was still a student at the University, and he was a worker, we participated in various actions and conflicts with our opponents. (...)

"At that time the president of the party Dr. Vladimir Prebeg and parliament deputy Dr. Josip Pazman were in prison, and the former president of the party Dr. Aleksandar Horvat had to retire and didn't take part in public in political activities of the party. Although the 'National Council' seemingly banned the Croatian Party of Rights, still its entire political activities went with some sort of a sponsorship of Dr. Horvat, while the activities of the secret organization and the revolutionary group were headed by myself.

"When we received a message from Vienna, by a secret channel and by a messenger of the Croatian Committee, it was agreed for the parliament deputy Dr. Ivo Frank, the son of Dr. Josip Frank, the deceased president of the party, to go into emigration; one of Zagreb revolutionary groups moved him abroad immediately. (...) However, news kept arriving from Viena that Dr. Ivo Frank did not succeed to usefully associate himself with exiled Croatian officers, so due to that the work was obstructed and we couldn't count on a serious success. Dr. Ivo Frank then settled in Budapest and later retired from political work. Because of that in February 1920 in an agreement with Dr. Aleksandar Horvat I had decided to go to Viena and meet with the Committee, to find out the real situation. For me it wasn't simple to get a passport for the new Republic of Austria, moreover because the activities of the Croatian Committee in Viena were already well known, and both the government in Belgrade and the police in Zagreb were very much alarmed by these activities. I had to cross the border illegally. I traveled by train to Maribor. The messenger of the Committee waited for me there, with whom I crossed the border by night over a hill, and then we continued our journey to Vienna by train."

The agreement in Vienna

"In Viena I met with general - colonel Sarkotic and colonels Duic and Percevic and for several days we discussed everything that was of interest at that time. We have decided to preserve the Committee abroad, and in the homeland the core of the revolutionary organization, that we organized, because the course of events went in the direction for which we were sure that would require the both kinds of activities, as we have already anticipated. The Communist regime of Bela Kun, however, didn't last long and as soon as it was overthrown, colonel Stjepan Duic managed to establish a camp in Hungary near Viszvar, not far away from the river Drava, where Croatian soldiers were collected who didn't want to serve in the Serbian army, and who deserted to Hungary with the help of our revolutionary group in Zagreb and its branches that were already created in the province. These military fugitives were settled in Hungary as agriculture workers, but they permanently maintained contacts with our revolutionary organization in Zagreb."

Beating by the law
Pavelic amply writes about economic impoverishment of Croatia, which the Belgrade authorities systematically performed immediately after the proclamation of the common state, from unfair changing of krunas into dinars and replacement of Croatian clerks with Serbian newcomers to the compulsory stigmatizing of cattle. His description of military and police terror towards Croats is also very detailed, in which he emphasized the beating of victims:

"Only during the first year of existence of the new state policemen have beaten tens of thousands of peasants for political reasons. Serbian policemen weren't occupied much by public work and safety. Their main task was to suppress every, even the least Croatian manifestation. For every word that would remind of Croatian nationality or discontent with political or economical situation, the policemen would take away the unfortunate 'criminal' into a police station and sentence him immediately to beating from 25 to 50 times. They would throw him at the floor, and first beat him 'by the law', and then 'at ease' policemen would stomp over him with their feet. These 'laws' were also applied on peasants in whose houses they would find even a trace of a Croatian national emblem or flag, a photograph of a national leader from the past or present, any Croatian newspapers or an old year-book framed in the Croatian flag, or if they didn't want to shout 'long live the king' when the policemen would demand. The 'criminal' wasn't always taken to the station, but they would often beat him 'at the scene of the crime' - in front of his whole family, women and children."

Subsequent description of events
Dozivljaji II of Dr. Ante Pavelic, the future Ustase Poglavnik, were produced from 1946-1948 in Italy, therefore after his repeated exile. The text was originally written in Italian and it was subsequently translated and in word root spelling mostly published in the paper "Hrvatska", an organ of South-American Croats, printed in Buenos Aires.

Pavelic while writing his memoirs, which have certain literary values that cannot be denied, dind't have at his disposal the necessary documentation, it is emphasized that Pavelic "has no scientific pretensions, not even historical, nor it is his intention to write history", but just to "outline with his own descriptions some of his adventures and mark them with Croatian - statehood and his personal political and statesman conceptions". This means that in these memoirs there are many blanks and intentional omissions of some controversial events, but also intentional political mystification and myth-making. "Dozivljaji II" for all layers of readers, but also for experts are still interesting as a testimony of one era when the Croatian national problem wasn't solved only by democratic means, but also by a conflict of totalitarian ideologies. Moreover, in these memoirs it can be seen that even Pavelic in the first ten years of existence of the Yugoslav state believed in the possibility of an agreement with Serbian authorities, but the proclamation of Sixth - January Dictatorship, as he emphasizes several times, completely disproved it.

The publisher of Dozivljaji II is a Zagreb publishing house "Vratna Gora", and its December promotion is timed as an admonition of "80th anniversary of betrayal and surrendering of thousand years old Croatian state to the Kingdom of Serbia".

[Part Two]

Radic was a great man, but he was a Russophile
It can be noticed that Pavelic persistently emphasizes the danger of Communism in his memoirs, seeing in that movement "dangerous and anational formula". For future Ustase Poglavnik the Communist Party of Yugoslavia was "the first Yugoslav party" which placed such geographic determination in its name full ten years before the common state was officially named that way:

"Yugoslavism denies nationalies of entire three nations, that is four, bearing in mind that Bulgarians are considered as southern Slavs and other fractions and minorities living in those lands... Yugoslavia, a completely fabricated state formula, that never existed in the past, denies and erases continuity of state and political past of the nations that consist it, and therefore it is at the same time the best ally of Communism and Bolsevism. There, that is why Russian Communist propaganda was the first to invent the name 'Yugoslavia' for a forcible conglomerate of countries and nations."

Radic - a great Russophile
Pavelic shows how repulsive the Communist idea to him was with a description of political atmosphere prior to the local elections in March 1920, when he closely cooperated with Stjepan Radic. The leader of HSS he considered as a man of "great intelligence and restless temper" and a "great Russophile" who allegedly dreamed about the "unity of the Slavic world":

"Not only because of opposition to the annexation regime, but also because of the Communist danger I have decided to unite Croatian parties on elections. I spoke with Stjepan Radic and with representatives of the new party Croatian Union [Hrvatska Zajednica], which was in the beginning joined even by the dentist Pavelic (On 1. December 1918 he read the decision of uniting to the regent! - Z.K.), who had been removed already at that time, because the new leadership of the party realized that his personality is harmful for the party itself. The new electoral list wasn't achieved because of several reasons, however between these three parties an atmosphere of tolerance was created, so there was no electoral struggle between us, but that struggle developed with us united on one side and on the other Communists and followers of Svetozar Pribicevic, who at the same time supported the Communist party.

"One day I was told that the next Sunday afternoon Communists will hold a large rally in Vrabac, a municipality in Zagreb suburbs... It was my opinion that this could affect the outcome of elections in the city of Zagreb itself, in case Communists win in that municipality. I had decided to see Stjepan Radic. I expressed my concern to him in a conversation and told him that it is necessary for us to act together in Vrabac and to prevent Communists from seducing the voters over there. Radic accepted my proposal right away, so tomorrow we went together to Vrabac. We have arrived there just when the Communist rally started. When the first Communist speaker finished his speech, I asked that both Radic and myself be allowed to speak. Communist speakers didn't allow us to speak, but I stood up on one rock and asked the people if they would let us speak. All present peasants replied unanimously: yes! I held a short introductory speech, and then helped Radic to stand up on the rock. It was well known that Radic had a poor sight, so he always needed help.

"I described this event, which as many others had its repercussions. Stjepan Radic spoke with insulting words about the monarchy and against the dinasty of Karadjordjevics - against both the king and regent. These attacks repeated several times on Radic's rallies, so the Belgrade regime started to persecute his party and Radic himself, who was soon afterwards sentenced to prison (to two and a half years in prison - Z.K.)."

The theatrical arrest of Pavelic
In the beginning of 1921 a really theatrical arrest of Pavelic followed. The author describes in details what was being "conspired" back then, wanting to emphasize his almost daily activity on the destabilization of the greater Serbian regime:

"On one night the party meeting was being held in the 'Vodopivec' restaurant in Meduliceva street. Thereat Stipe Javor notified me that two peasants, supporters and propagators of the Peasant Party, came to him and told him they want to go to emigration, because they were disappointed in their party, in which they invested so much. Both of them were known as honorable peasants and good patriots, so I told Javor that he can send them off and entrust them to Andrija Medar who will get them over them border, which was later done. After several months one of them was entrusted with the task to return to the homeland and to deliver a certain explosive, which had to be used at a certain time. However, Mirko Marcinko, was arrested while crossing the border and then incarcerated."
The mentioned Marcinko was also found with a letter with a manuscript of Dr. Milan Sufflay, so that was the reason for the well known process against this Croatian Party of Rights intellectual and historian, when his associate Rudolf Vidak and about ten more "revolutionaries" were also accused. The police also prepared an ambush for Pavelic himself.

The ambush at Vidak's

"At that moment my fiancee (Marija Lovrencevic - Z.K.) came to my lawyer's office, because we had to go together to the Art Pavilion, where the annual party of the Civic Club of our renewed Croatian Party of Rights was being held. I asked her to come with me to see Mrs. Vidak, so we went to the Tkalciceva street where Vidak had his shop. When I entered the shop I saw Vidak's wife alone, and just when I was about to ask her what is going on, I heard a strong swish, the door opened suddenly and several Serbian soldiers broke into the shop with bayonets on their rifles, pointed at me, my fiancee and Vidak's wife. Some man in a civilian suit was also with them, who pointed a gun at me and savagely shouted - You are under arrest! We finally have you! At the same moment another man in a civilian suit came in with handcuffs for my arms. I remained calm, but the hands of that man were shivering so much that he was unable to handcuff me. I told him: - Easy, easy! Calm down, because upset like that you won't be able to do it...

"Realizing how futile it was to strain he told me: - Promise that you won't run, and I'll give it up.

"'I can't promise you anything, but as there are so many of you and as you are well armed, I think I won't be able to run away.'

"(...) Vidak's wife, my fiancee and me they took outside to the street, where we were surrounded by a platoon of about twenty soldiers with bayonets on their rifles. The procession was on the move. They took us through Ilica, the main street in Zagreb, which was full of by-passers, because that was the time of usual evening walks. People stopped and observed this, for Zagreb, a strange scene: two women, five or six men - surrounded and escorted by about twenty soldiers fully equipped for combat, parading between two lines of spectators - who didn't know whether to laugh to such a brave strategy of the "beloved Serbian army' or to pity that cowardly action. On the way to the City Command they searched our pockets. They found Croatian flag ribbons at my fiancee, that she used to make cockades for our annual Croatian Party of Rights party, so that was another reason of their exhilaration for this 'successful' operation.

"In the building of the City Command they took us to the commander, Serbian colonel Dragomir Nikolajevic, to whom the agent Nikola Hajdukovic proudly submitted a report by saying that he captured all criminals, even their boss Pavelic! - pointing his finger at me..."
As the police couldn't find any serious evidence for an indictment, Pavelic was soon released. At the trial on which he defended Vidak, his client and Sufflay were sentenced to several years of prison.


Pavelic and Pasic unanimous in mocking Trumbic's Yugoslavism
Ante Pavelic contacted Serbian politicians on several occasions. Moreover, it can be noticed in his writings that he tried, together with Stjepan Radic, to make an agreement about the peaceful separation of Croatian and Serbian territories and interests, but under the given circumstances that could not end with positive results. Radical Stojan Protic made first contacts with the Croatian Party of Rights, the only one who pledged for federal division of Kingdom of Serbs Croats and Slovenes after the Vidovdan constitution, and with him in 1921 Radical Party parliament deputy Momcilo Ivanic also came to Zagreb:

"Chaplain Rittig offered to invite Protic and Ivanic for dinner, and Stjepan Radic was also present at the dinner, but also several of us representatives of other parties in the bloc. Svetozar Rittig belonged to the Croatian Union, but he was always a supporter of a union with Serbia, even under much more unfavorable conditions than federalists themselves asked for. (...) After Ritting Stjepan Radic spoke. He commended chaplain Ritting, who spoke the way a host must speak with his guests, but he said that a deep pit has been dug out between Serbs and Croats, and that Protic with all of his good will doesn't even represent 'a single common girt' over which you could cross - the differences are so big, contradictions and different interests, so a completely different orientation of the entire Serbian politics would be necessary to bury that pit.

"Others who were present also said some things. I mentioned that only the recognition of complete Croatian state independence by Serbia could open the road to creating good relations and common interests between both our nations. (...) We parted cordially. Stojan Protic was pleased with our sincerity, so we agreed to preserve the contact, which Stjepan Radic did for a while, but that connection was impossible to preserve because his own Radical Party in Serbia pushed him aside, so he lost all influence on Serbian politics.

"The other attempt happened a year later (1922 - Z.K.), when one day, early in the morning, a man came to my lawyer's office, dressed like citizens of small Serbian towns, that is dressed in something between a citizen's and peasant's suit. He introduced himself to me as Pavle Andjelic, parliament deputy of Serbian Democratic Party, and told me that he was sent by the president of his party, professor Ljuba Davidovic, with the intention to contact Croatian politicians. (...)

"I contacted Radic over the telephone and we agreed that I would bring Andjelic to him tomorrow to his apartment, where we would have a conversation. Pavle Andjelic interpreted to us that Ljuba Davidovic would like to re-establish contact with us in order to reach an agreement between him and Radic, between his party and the Croatian Bloc. The agreement was supposed pertain to the most important points: changing the the state policy and in that way achieving reconciliation of both nations. Stjepan Radic replied that he is prepared to consider the possibility of an agreement, based on mutual understanding, which could satisfy both sides and lead to reconciliation. He asked Andjelic to inform Davidovic about his position. At the end of the conversation a brief statement was composed, which was signed by all three of us. This statement caused fierce debates in Serbia and it was a subject for Belgrade newspapers for a week, but it was also soon forgotten.

"We interpreted this whole thing that the Belgrade political circles at that moment didn't have serious intentions, but that they wanted to negotiate for another reason. Belgrade, with all other things, on one hand needed to prove to France and England their good will with a reconciliation with Croats, and on the other they needed to point out that Croats are not so uncompromising in the matter of the common state, since it was beginning to be the general opinion abroad."

The strongest personality in Serbian political history
From Pavelic's writings it is easy to notice that he was fascinated by "eminent" Nikola Pasic, "the strongest personality of the Serbian political history". He described his biography in details and his merit for the development of the Serbian state, at the same time regretting Croats never had a politician of his qualities in promoting their interests. That is why Pavelic was honored when Pasic invited him to Belgrade in 1925 through his personal secretary prof. Djordje Jelenic. Pavelic's party comrade Milan Sufflay was also present at that meeting.

"The old Nikola Pasic, with a patriarchal look with his long and white beard, dressed very elegantly, received us very politely. After a short introductory speech Pasic immediately moved on to politics and asked me how are things with us in Croatia and what do people think there about politics and the state. I replied literally:

"'President, sir, as you asked me that, I will tell you with simple words the real truth, especially because you must already know that I am completely uninterested about any benefits from this conversation - because we in our political program cannot and do not want to be in any government combinations in this state.

"'Surely you have already been told by various Croats, politicians of all kinds, that there is this or that faction in Croatia for the common state, for state unity with Serbia and national unity with the Serbian people. Allow me to tell you that none of those who said such things did tell you the truth. There is nobody in Croatia who supports state unity and even less for the national unity, except some gentlemen who would want to have personal benefit from it. The Croatian people do not want that unity, and even less they want to hear about Yugoslavism and about some Yugoslav state. They respect the Serbian people and want their Croatian nationality to be respected as well. Slavism is 'a completely unknown term for the Croatian people, and Croats never thought of themselves as Slavs and futhermore it is inconceivable that they could suddenly accept a foreign and unknown name - Yugoslavs.'"

A nation by the meridian

"Pasic carefully listened to my words, stroked his long white beard, then stood up and came closer to the fireplace, and stoked the fire a little, and then he again sat down, looked at me and said:

"'I knew that! When we were on Corfu there were consultations how to name the nation and how to name the state, and these Trumbics of yours wanted it to be called the Yugoslav nation and the state Yugoslavia, but I said - it cannot be a nation by the meridian. So, there, that's why it's called the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes!'

"As a witty man, Nikola Pasic couldn't characterize the lust of Yugoslavism better, which deliriously possessed some Croats and their parties to impose on the nations of ancient national names a new, geographical name, so he called that abortion - a nation by the meridian! After that we spoke with each other some more and then parted. (...)

"My private visit to Nikola Pasic was noted even in the Serbian newspapers, so in Zagreb among enemies and traitors, even among members of the Peasant Party, there were all kinds of comments. But that couldn't change my or the attitude of our party at all, as a Croat, to openly express the position and feelings of the Croatian people in a conversation with the most important Serbian political leader."
Pavelic here consciously omits the context of his and Sufflay's contacts with that "great Serbian man and politician". Judging by the previous historical researches, the leaders of HSP didn't only exchange opinions about Yugoslavism with Serbian radicals, but from 1925 - 1926 they tried to impose themselves as the leading political force in Croatia. Radic's recognition of the monarchy and the removal of the Republican determination from the name of HSS they considered a national treason, to which they tried to respond by creating a political party which would be a counterpart to Serbian radicals.

According to a contemporary of these events, Josip Horvat, this is why Sufflay planned the forming of Croatian People's Radical Party, hoping that Belgrade would then more easily accept the negotiations for the final solution of the Croatian question. Sufflay even wrote a manifesto of a sort of the "Croatian radicals" which Pavelic certainly had to be familiar with, as he defended him from accusations of other Croatian parties, but that idea didn't come to a serious aproval in Belgrade either, so it was soon abandoned.


Dalmatia: the price for Mussolini's support for Pavelic
In June 1927, only a few days after he was elected for the vice-president of Croatian Party of Rights, Pavelic was chosen as a representative of Zagreb to be present at the International Congress of Cities in Paris. As Pavelic always had problems getting a passport he used that voyage to negotiate a solution of the Croatian question directly with a member of the leadership of Mussolini's Fascist Party. By looking at it from the international context, that was also a direct answer to intensive pro-Yugoslav policy of France and Great Britain. Pavelic, however, very vaguely describes his Italian episode, though it proved to be the crucial point for the creation and development of the Ustase movement.

"On the way to Paris I stopped in Viena and visited the members of the Croatian Committee, general Stjepan Sarkotic and colonel Ivan Percevic. We also invited colonel Stjepan Duic from Graz by a telegram to this meeting. At that moment the activity of the Committee consisted of continuous observation of the development of European politics, in order to always be prepared to help to the benefit of the homeland, and to that purpose it maintained versatile contacts with political and diplomatic representatives in Viena and readily informed them about the condition of things they considered to be important for our mutual political activity. I expounded my intention to them, that on the return from Paris I will pass through Rome, where I would stay for several days and where I would try to contact any factor through which I could obtain confidential information about relations of Italy and the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes.

"General - colonel Sarkotic and colonels Percevic and Duic decided to immediately contact people from the Italian embassy in Viena, with whom they maintained contact, and that they will inform me in Paris which person I could talk with in Rome.

Aide-mémoire for Mussolini

"After the Congress in Paris was over I went to Rome where I stayed in the Hotel Rora, as we agreed in Viena. There a journalist Dr. Roberto Forges Davanzati looked for me, the editor of Roman daily 'La Tribuna' and a member of the High Council of the Fascist Party. We talked in his private apartment. I told him what I wanted to know about the relations between Italy and the Kingdom of SCS and what are the perspectives for the future of those relations. I explained to him the political situation in the Kingdom of SCS and told him about the relations of our Croatian parties and especially about the unswerving position and determination of our Croatian Party of Rights to win our state independence not only by internal oposition, but also by cooperation with all enslaved nationalities, that are included in that artificial state, counting on moral support of neighboring nations. Regarding the consideration of eventual moral aid, I asked that Italy stops anti-Croatian territorial demands, because the Belgrade regime is using such propaganda, that the basic reason of their Serbo-Yugoslav politics against Italy is their seeming defense of terrirorial integrity of Croatia regarding Dalmatia. Dr. Forges Davanzati told me that Fascism considers the recent Adriatic dispute over.

"Knowing that other individuals tried to contact Italian representatives too, I warned Dr Roberto Forges Davanzati if anyone else would come in the name of our party and ask for any kind of material benefit from that, they would be repudiated by such attempt, because that is not consistent with our principle activity. On the second meeting a day later, Forges Davanzati notified me how the situation seems to them and how are they judging the future develpment of events. From his words I got a confirmation of what I predicted, that is, that the relations between Rome and Belgrade could deteriorate, which would sooner or later lead to serious conflicts. We decided to maintain a discrete contact through Mrs. Davanzati. The sister of Mrs. Forges Davanzati is married to a higher official of the ministry of foreign affairs of Italy, the diplomat - Paolo Cortese. The conversation with Dr. Roberto Forfes Davanzati was an oportunity for me to inform myself better and to evoke interest in Italy among those whose interest depended on our cause."
Pavelic omits the fact that on those negotiations he gave an aide-mémoire to Davanzati for Mussolini, in which he offered Italy to be a kind of a mentor and protector of the Croatian struggle for independence. The price that Croatia would pay for the destruction of the Yugoslav state would be the unconditional recogition of Italian "right on domination on the Adriatic", then "the right to use natural wealth of Balkan for the needs of Italian overpopulated country", and the readiness to adjust Croats to the "sphere of Italian interests, both politically and economically, but also militarily."

Pavelic even went a step further claiming that Croatia is prepared to "waive from keeping a navy on the Adriatic, if Italy would wish to take upon itself the protection of the Croatian coast", "to concede to Italy to that purpose Boka Kotorska with all mountains that are strategically important for the territories of Dalmatia and Herzegovina", "to give Italy in the field of economy all concessions" and finally he didn't even lack the promise that "Croatia waives from buiding a trade port for a certain number of years, which is to be determined, in order not to obstruct the development of Rijeka". Croatian historians, notably Dr. Jere Jareb, claim that the omitted aide-mémoire was the "seed, from which Roman Accords later grew out of".

The trip to Hungary and Bulgaria
The same year Pavelic, in accord with the politics of the Viena Croatian Committee, went to Budapest, because Hungary was trying in every way to neutralize the politics of the Little Entante (The Kingdom of SCS, Romania and Czechoslovakia), which was created for the purpose of preventing the return of the Habsburg dinasty to power. Of course, Pavelic also omits here that he was negotiating about the illegal supplying of weapons and about Hungarian help in the aim to include Italy as intensively as possible in the solution of the Croatian problem:

"After my first appearance in the Belgrade Parliament I returned to Zagreb and travelled the same night with my wife to Budapest. In Budapest I had the oportunity to immediately talk with Hungarian politicians and parliament deputies. I visited the Hungarian regent Nikola Horty and general staff officer Gyul Gombos, with whom I had a long time friendship even from the time before the World War, when he was stationed in Zagreb. I introduced all these individuals with intentions and decisions of our party, that is, with insurmaountable rights of the Croatian people for their liberty and independence. On that occassion I used the oportunity to visit the former parliament deputy of the Croatian Party of Rights Dr. Ivica Frank and Mrs. Frank, with whom we were occupied for long in a friendly conversation."

He can't read Serbian
In December 1927 Pavelic went as a lawyer to Skoplje, where in a trial he tried to defend members of pro-Bulgarian IMRO, on a accused on a show trial for terrorism. Pavelic's stay in Skoplje couldn't pass without a political incident:

"On the last night of my stay in Skoplje, I was on a dinner in the restaurant of the hotel where I was staying. Two Macedonian lawyers were with me... When a waiter gave me a menu, I looked at it and returned it to him right away, asking him to read me the meals, because I couldn't read them. The waiter smiled, picked one meal and served it to us right away. After dinner I stayed with my Macedonian lawyer friends until leaving to the train station... A couple of days later, on the return from Sofia, a friend of mine passing through Zagreb brought me Belgrade newspapers, which had detailed articles about the event in Skoplje and about the 'severe incident' I committed in that Skoplje restaurant by telling the waiter that I can't read Serbian and that my statement disturbed many guests in the restaurant that was 'full of people', and who reacted on that by kicking me out of the restaurant. I laughed! (...)

"For several weeks in Belgrade cabarets a comical song was being sung about 'the deputy of the Belgrade parliament, who travelled all over Serbia not understanding Serbian language'! After that I also became the favorite subject of caricatures of one Zagreb newspapers."


Punisa Racic shot with a pistol Croatian deputies from the parliament speaker's pulpit undisturbed
Pavelic's parliament mandate in Belgrade national parliament coincided with the most dramatic events in Croatian-Serbian relations. In his writings he described that atmosphere of intolerance as "real hell", which "was impossible to calm down". He considered that the ultimate goal was creating a government with a "general as the president... and one arbitrary amputation of Croatia, which was to be performed by the king himself and by which the most of Croatia would remain in Yugoslavia". That part of Pavelic's memoirs is certainly the most interesting:

"My speeches were not excluded from protests of Serbian deputies and ministers, but one deputy of Serbian Radical Party had a special task, to interupt me and raise his voice, whenever I would mention Croatian independence. He was deputy Punisa Racic. He stood in front of the speaker's pulpit and interupted me, and in the end against all expectations he confirmed that I'm right.

The struggle for greater Serbia

"When I once said that this country is nothing else but greater Serbia, Punisa Racic shouted: You are right, I want greater Serbia! Further during my speech, when they heckled me that they liberated us, I replied:

"'Yes, you liberated us from our money, our property, our whole economy, our civilization, our freedom and everything we had! (...) It was clear that something was being prepared."
Pavelic's description of the assassination of Stjepan Radic and deputies of HSS sugests a theory of a carefully planned conspiracy of the king and greater Serbian circles:

"I was sitting in the Parliament (19. june 1928. - Z.K.) as always in the last bench of the far left side. In the evening, after a short rest, Punisa Racic came to me holding a paper in his hand and said: - Look, I'm collecting signatures to put Radic in a nut house! - No need! - I replied him - he's already in it. Where can you find a bigger nut house than this Parliament, where there are whispers and talks, that some day even blood will be spilled in it! He looked at me with a hairy eyeball and said: Don't worry, nothing will ever happen to you! - Punisa, what is the meaning of this conversation? - I noticed. - Nothing, you are for greater Croatia, and I'm for greater Serbia! Bye!

"At that moment the chairman's bell rang and Punisa went away. After this session I found parliament deputy of the Peasant Party Markotic in the lobby and I told him that it seems that something is being prepared and that the rumors that Stjepan Radic should be removed are not just rumors and that it is necessary to be on alert. He replied me that he talked to Radic and that he doesn't believe that the matter is that serious.

He shot standing behind the speaker's pulpit

"The next day was 20. June. I entered the Parliament around half past eleven, and the session had already started. Parliament benches were almost full, while the record from the previous session was being verified. After verification of the protocol of the last session there was a strange silence, and then the chairman Ninko Peric announced that Punisa Racic asked to speak and wants to respond to a personal insult from the last session. Punisa stood up, but not to speak from his seat, as it was a rule to respond to personal remarks, but he came out on the speaker's pulpit. He was followed by deputy Jovanovic, 'duke Lune,' who stood behind him.

"The words of Punisa Racic gave the impression that he wants to start an incident with anyone, and when one deputy heckled him about something regarding his undertaking against rich Muslim beys in Macedonia, Punisa asked him to repeat what he said, which the other did, and he immediately fired the first shot at him, then he leaned his pistol on his left arm to aim better and he looked at Radic, who was sitting in the bench of the first row, five or six feet away from the pulpit, he shot an arm of the deputy of the Peasant Party who was sitting nest to Radic, and he shot Radic himself. Deputy of the Peasant Party Djuro Basaricek stood up, shouted something waving with his arms, when Punisa shot him mortally. At that moment Radic's nephew Pavle Radic stood in front of the pulpit when Punisa shouted at him: - Just the man I was looking for! - and shot him with a second shot. After that he shouted: Long live Serbia! He came down from the pulpit and together with 'duke Lune' left the parliament. The chairman rang, and he went out too."

The murder - the excuse for dictatorship

"At first all deputies remained on their seats like petrified, but after the last shot the room emptied soon. Several deputies rushed to help the wounded Stjepan Radic, and holding him under his arms they carried him out. An ambulance drove Radic and both other wounded deputies to a hospital, while other parliament clerks carried the other two deputies who were killed at the spot. (...)

"Two things immediately come to mind. Stjepan Radic was elected a member of a parlamentary delegation that was to go abroad in those days and participate (in Paris) on an Interparliamentary Congress, but the chairman of the parliament in all ways he could obstructed the departure of this delegation. Radic's departure could not be allowed, because everything was prepared for the crime. They only waited for a convenient oportunity. (...)

"Why exactly in the parliament? Aleksandar already had the intention to install his dictatorship believing that only with it he could crush the Croatian resistance against the common state and Croatian unconditional demand for state independence. Punisa Racic and his comrades could have shot him anywhere and anytime they wanted in Belgrade, but the assassination had to be executed in the parliament so that the king could justify before the outside world the abolishing of the constitution and establishment of the dictatorship, showing that you cannot rule with a parliament in which murders are being carried out. (...)

The world condemned the murder leniently

"The crime caused a deep impression in the whole world. Someone asked the Belgrade minister of foreign affairs Vojislav Marinkovic: - what will the civilized world say about his outrageous crime in the parliament? The virtuous Serbian minister replied cynically: - What will they say? In Europe there will be noise for a few weeks, and then the whole thing will be forgotten!... Minister Vojislav Marinkovic was right! The outside world and public opinion described and condemned the criminal event in the parliament, but that was all!"
Pavelic claims that the parliament assasination was exactly the necessary turning point in the way of Croatian struggle against Belgrade: "Whereas the political means used until then were hopeless to their purposes, I believed that they would try in the future to openly and exclusively use - force! That is why from our side it was necessary to prepare adequate defense... But all of that needed to be focused to create an organization that will lead the action and prevent that human and moral capital from exhausting in separate local and useless actions; an organization that could lead a successful struggle through a long period of time and always with intensified activity until the situation matures for the final blow and for the final goal of liberation. I then created the formal outline of the organization - Ustasa; and with this word the nature and the purpose of the organization is defined. The word revolution is determined in Croatian with the word - prevrat [overthrow], a term that didn't suit our case, because the Croatian people didn't want an internal revolution, but liberation of their homeland under foreign yoke, and that cannot be achieved by a revolution, but by an uprising of the entire people."

A "Drunk" hindered a policeman
About ten days after Sixth January Dictatorship of Belgrade was declared, Pavelic decided to leave the country because he was under constant police surveillance. Becuase the validity of his passport was expired, he chose to cross to Italy over Susak bridge, in which he was aidedby his associates Malivuk and Lisac:

"When we arrived at the bridge, Lisac went first to the border guard who checked passports, and asked him to let him pass. The policeman, of course, didn't want to hear about it, but as Lisac insisted and started hugging the guard - and pretending to be drunk, started begging him to let him pass at list for a minute, and that he will return right away. The scene was very amusing, other guards and idle by-passers observed him and laughed. While Lisac bothered the policeman, people passed and showed him their passports, and I did the same by showing him an open passport. The policeman, constantly hindered by Lisac, didn't have time to check the validity of my passport; he stamped it while I was still holding it, and I went to the other side of the bridge. Italian clerks of the border control, although at the other side of the bridge, were amused by the scene that was performed by Lisac and the policeman. I showed them my passport. When they saw the Italian visa on it, they stamped it too and I found myself fortunately on the other side of both borders."


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