Letter to the CNN editor
Date: Mon, 11 Apr 2005
Subject: Christiane Amanpour statement about Cardinal Stepinac
CNN International News
Watching the funeral of Pope John Paul II we were shocked to hear your
reporter Ms. Christiane Amanpour making a remark about "the Pope's
controversial decision of beatifying Croatia's Nazi-collaborator Cardinal
Stepinac". It is appalling to hear such a false statement from a CNN
reporter, made at the funeral of a beloved and respected Pope and heard
by millions of people.
Where does Ms. Amanpour come off to insult not only Cardinal Stepinac and
by it the whole Croatian nation, but also the very integrity of the Holy
Father, who never would have considered for a moment declaring a man
worthy of sainthood, if there were even a grain of doubt in his mind
about the saintliness and martyrdom of Cardinal Stepinac.
Even while some in the Catholic Church might not have done enough to help
stop Hitler's "Final solution"
of the "Jewish question", Cardinal Stepinac courageously opposed the
German Nazis and Croatia's puppet regime at his own peril, personally
saving many Jews by hiding them on the Church's estate and publicly
speaking from the pulpit of the Zagreb cathedral against racism of any
kind. He believed in the dignity of the human person, regardless of race,
religion or nationality. Here are just a few excerpts from his statements
in letters to Croatia's WWII puppet state leader Pavelic:
"I implore you in the name of humanity, which our people have always
valued so highly, that you do not permit any of the remaining citizens of
our state to suffer unjustly. In the collection camps there are many who
are innocent or who do not deserve so severe a punishment... do not
permit irresponsible and uninvited elements to sin against the true good
of our nation". - March 6, 1943.
"This is a shameful stain and a crime which cries out for revenge, just
as the whole camp of Jasenovac is a shameful stain upon the NDH. As a
priest and bishop I say together with Christ on the cross: Father forgive
them, for they know not what they do!... Be assured that it is not
hatred, but love of truth and of the Croatian nation which compels me to
write this letter." - Feb. 24. 1943
In spite of the Cardinal's open opposition to the actions of the Germans
and the Pavelic regime, he was tried on false charges and imprisoned by
Tito's communist Yugoslavia, but, interestingly, only after he refused to
make Croatia's Catholic Church independent of the Papacy in Rome. After
release from prison he died under house arrest several years later,
evidently having been slowly poisoned.
We expect an apology from Ms. Amanpour and CNN for her irresponsible and
damaging statements. This is not the first time Ms. Amanpour has tried to
defame Croatia, as several years ago she seemed to be looking for a
needle in a haystack by reporting a "Nazi graffiti" somewhere in Zagreb.
Of course the fact that such Neo-Nazi graffiti can be found all over
Europe and even here in America, does not seem to hinder her for singling
out Croatia - again! One has to wonder - just what is her agenda?
Listening to too much Serb propaganda?
Hilda M. Foley
National Federation of Croatian Americans
13272 Orange Knoll
Santa Ana, CA 92705