Jasenovac, Auschwitz of the Balkans
Despite the fact that the trial of Dinko Sakic took place 20 years ago, and the man was found guilty, subsequent Croatian governments have continued to deny and distort the history of WWII and to pursue policies (like Tudjman) that seek to normalize the fascist Ustaše and their policies – policies that resulted in crimes of genocide against Serbs, Jews, and Romas. A similar normalization of pro-Nazi political movements from the past have been emulated recently in other countries, particularly in the Ukraine. As in Croatia, World War II (and pre-war) fascists have been glorified into “nationalist heroes” and monuments to anti-fascists have been defaced or destroyed.
Mr. Sakic was found guilty in October 1999 of killing more than 2,000 Serbs, Jews and Romas at the camp named Jasenovac. [Please note that hundreds of thousands died there. Not just 2,000.] Among other crimes, the verdict said, he ordered executions; did not treat the sick; worked inmates to death; starved and tortured some with a blowtorch; and hanged others . . . He personally shot at least four prisoners dead, two of them for smiling.1999 CNN Report
These trends are alarming to all those who wish to never again live through fascist terror. It’s also important to note that the numbers of people murdered at Jasenovac and other death sites were in the hundreds of thousands, numbers that are typically minimized by countries such as Croatia and the Ukraine. Recently, a US Congressman from New York, Max Rose, has commented on the global dangers that this perpetuation of fascism poses. See his Op-Ed piece in the New York Times of 13 february 2020.