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(E) Welcome To Europe, Croatia!
By Nenad N. Bach | Published  07/6/2003 | Opinions | Unrated
(E) Welcome To Europe, Croatia!


Welcome To Europe, Croatia

And what is Croatia doing these days? I have stayed away, shied away from the topic, subject of, for reasons that clogged up decades of my life. As long as I can remember it was Croatia this and that and everything else. Maybe, just maybe, I was tired of being Croatian. There are other corners of the world to inhale.
Croatia was interesting when the bad Yugoslavs were trying to absorb Croatians into a South Slav melting pot with them as in charge of the soup, main course and dessert.
Croatia being free and independent and a member of the United Nations was an unbelievable dream come true. Slobo the monster's attempt to wipe out the Croatian people failed miserably. Was it a miracle that Croatia won the war? Was it politics? Was it an act of God, politics, maybe the aliens had something to do with it. The late President Franjo Tudjman is hailed as the mas! termind in some corners. The Yugo-Serb military machine did pound Croatia and its citizens to hell and back. Croatia never did break, it was hurt extensively. 
Shall we thank the White House? London? Paris? The Vatican? The Pope has visited Croatia three times. How fortunate for Croatia! 
I don't know where I fit in this present day Croatia. I thought I did. I have traveledto Croatia from 1977 to 2002. Those years takes in a Croatia when we struggled as a people, an identity, an element in the equation that didn't have room for Croatians. the war had changed everybody and everything. Now this many years later. Is the HDZ relevant? They never did recover after President Tudjman died. Post-death information revealed the HDZ was not that cohesive. Is President Mesic anything more then a person in place for the European Community? How Croatian is he?! The definition of being Croatian has been redefined. It now conforms to a European Community standard. 
Croatia will be in the Holy Roman Empire, Incorporated. I'm starting to like the European Community, Incorporated. They are giving the American Manifest Destiny Conglomerate competition. Croatia is normalizing, becoming a quiet Balkan country with museums, parking spaces, and a seacoast vacation spot. Never mind the parking, that is fictional.
Croatia is not the cutting edge country of the future. It is conforming into a nice place, less the nationalism, more tolerant, prices are still high, and the natives holding many more phantoms and fumes then they have the room for.
Croatia is a postcard. Croatia has a hole in that postcard. A confluence of realities mix there and blend into nearly invisiblebehavioral patterns. A little bit of the past, lots of see through denial and too much immigr! ant nationalism hoopla that really is not that in touch with the facts inside the real Croatia, over there by the Adriatic Sea, just beyond the Military Frontier, surrounded by a Balkan terrain now bought and paid for with a membership in the European Union.
Welcome to Europe, Croatia!! Please hold while we transfer your call to our home office in New Jersey. 
Now that feels familiar. 

Steve Mladen Renko 

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