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(E) Film "Harrison's flowers" in Croatia?
By Nenad N. Bach | Published  07/3/2003 | Opinions | Unrated
(E) Film "Harrison's flowers" in Croatia?


"Harrison's Flowers" still not in Croatia

I wrote a letter on June 23 to the Croatian government and the Media
regarding the film not having played in Croatia. Here is my translation
from the Croatian:


I read in the April edition of the Matica, the magazine for the Croatian
Diaspora, with great disbelief and anger that the French/American film
"Harrison's Flowers" has never been shown and is unknown in Croatia. The
film was already shown worldwide in 2000 and had received three prizes at
the film festival in San Sebastian. It is even sadder that the person who
has tried to present the film in Zagreb, the painter Anton 
Mates, had invited the media representatives to the closed premiere and
hardly anyone showed up. 

One has to ask, what is the reason that particularly this film, which
finally shows to the Western audience the truth and the suffering of
Croatia, especially Vukovar, found no interest among the Croatian media? 
Are the members of the Croatian media Croatians or are they
Yugo-nostalgics, who would rather deny the horrors that our people lived
through during the Serbian aggression? As Mr. Mates writes:" If you look
what is going on in the media, where now for a year or two they only
write about Croatian war crimes, which certainly existed and are the
shame and pain of the Croatian people, I hold that in comparison to the
Serbian ones' they are significantly smaller." (This can clearly be seen
in the Hague today.)

It seems that such people in the government and the media have no idea
how the Serbian propaganda against Croatia is still strong in the world,
with huge exaggerations in the numbers of Serbs and Jews killed by Croats
in WWII (yes, Croatia is still being rebuked for this) as for instance
the quoting of one million killed Serbs, while they conceal that they
also had a Nazi state under general Nedic and were killing Jews in the
concentration camps Sajmiste, Banjica and others or delivering them to
the Germans. While Croatia apologized to the Jews because of Jasenovac,
Serbs never apologized, rather lied that in Serbia it was only the
Germans who did the killings. By the way, only a short while ago Hungary
finally apologized and Romania finally admitted that they were killing
Jews - yet only Croatia is constantly being accused. Why? Precisely
because of this strong Serb propaganda. This was also the very reason
that there was not much sympathy in the West for Croatia when it was
attacked by Serbia. At the end, when they could not avoid seeing the
massive Serb atrocities in Bosnia, they finally decided on "all are
equally guilty". 

Therefore, gentlemen, a film like "Harrison's flowers" has enormous worth
for Croatia, because it shows truthfully what was happening in Croatia,
while Croatians did not step on even a blade of grass in Serbia. 
If there is an attempt to reconcile Croatians and Croatian Serbs, it is
clear that it has to be the Croatian Serbs who need to apologize, not the
other way around, as it seems today's Croatian Government and the media
believe. That this film was not shown in Croatia and the Croatian
government had no interest in importing it is indeed shameful. Every
Croatian must be deeply touched when seeing this foreign film, which has
been dedicated to the forty eight war correspondents who died in the war
of 1991-1995. 


Hilda Marija Foley
13272 Orange Knoll
Santa Ana, CA 92705

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