Date: Mon, 9 Jun 2003
Subject: Pope's visit to Croatia
As Croatian Americans we are offended by your reporter Tracy Wilkinson'sremarks about what she calls "Croatian nationalism" by writing that "astrain of hard-line nationalism that fueled the 1991-1995 war endures".Ms. Wilkinson was in 1991 at the scenes of Serb aggression, such asVukovar and others in Croatia and saw first hand that it was not Croatiannationalism but Serbia's insistence on "Greater Serbia" that fueled thewar. Croatia did not even have arms to defend itself except for riflesagainst tanks, artillery and planes. All Croatia wanted was independencefrom Serb subjugation, and declared its independence in June 1991. It had the right to secede according to the Yugoslav constitution of 1974.The Serb minority in Croatia, incited by Serbia's Milosevic, rebelled andtook up arms against their Croat neighbors, which gave the Serb-ledYugoslav army the excuse to move into Croatia to "bring order". Croatiansfought for their independence and are no more "nationalistic" thanAmericans declaring their independence, waving their flags and yelling"USA, USA". So why are Croatians constantly called "Nationalists", in aderogative, mean spirited manner?
Hilda M. Foley
National Federation of Croatian Americans
13272 Orange Knoll
Santa Ana, CA 92705