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World War II Rescued American Airmen Defend Serbs [WARNING-GRAPHIC PHOTOS]
National Committee of American Airmen ^ | April 9, 1999 | Richard L. Felman

Posted on 02/07/2003 6:24:30 PM PST by Karadjordje

US airman under Serbian care

Award for Serbian Chetnik leader Dragoljub Mihailovich

Award for Serbian Chetnik leader Dragoljub Mihailovich

The cover of Time Magazine, May 25, 1942. Their article began: "He clasps the crag with crooked hands...he watches from his mountain walls, and like a thunderbolt he falls."

Open letter—April 9, 1999
To Our Troops In The Former Yugoslavia

"We Found Out The Truth About the Serbs...When We Were Shot Down"
World War II Rescued American Airmen Defend Serbs
By Richard L. Felman

Over 500 MlAs Saved By The Serbian People During WWII

During World War II, we were in the Army Air Corps list as "Missing in Action" in the very same area you are now serving.  If we may, we would like to relay to you a frank, soldier-to-soldier message about our personal experience while there—something which politicians who sent you there have not told you and something which you have not read or seen in the anti-Serb media.

In 1944, the members of our committee were flying bombing missions out of Italy over Southern Europe.  During that time over 500 of us were shot down over enemy-occupied Yugoslavia and saved from certain death by the Serbian people.  Ours was the greatest rescue of American lives from behind enemy lines in history but has been kept under wraps all these years because of pressure from foreign sources. [Emphasis added]

While we were there, those of us who were wounded were given whatever medical supplies they had even at the deprivation of their own troops.   If there was one piece of bread in the house, or one egg, it went to the American airmen while the Serb went hungry.

If there was one bed or one blanket, it went to us while the Serb slept on the bare ground.  No risk of sacrifice was too great to insure our safety and well being.  One experience which is forever seared in my memory is the time a village with 200 women and children was burned to the ground by the Germans because the Serbs would not tell them where they were hiding us.  To this day, I can smell the terrible stench of their burning flesh.  One does not forget such things.

The most incredible part of our rescue was that before each mission, our bomber crews were briefed by the highest levels of American intelligence that if shot down over Yugoslavia, we were to stay away from the Serbian people as they were collaborating with the Germans and "cutting off the ears of American airmen" before turning them over. Only after we were shot down did we find out the amazing thoroughness with which the truth about the Serbs was being distorted. [Emphasis added]

Further compounding this deception is the fact that while the Serbs were our allies in WWII, Croatians and Muslims (who we are favoring today) were allies of the Nazis, shooting at us and responsible for killing many of our fellow American fliers.  In view of the lies we were told about the Serbs during World War II, we could not help but wonder if our foreign policy there today is the same anti-Serb bias we encountered 52 years ago.

Could our career diplomats sacrifice former friends and reward former enemies in the name of political expediency?  Could it be because in the world community there are over one billion Muslims and only 9 million Serbian Orthodox Christians with the same proportionate power in the global economy?  Could it be because the Serbs have no oil wells and no unlimited oil money?

Could it be because the Croatians and Muslims outspend the Serbs 50 to one on lobbyists, media firms and campaign contributions?  Could this be why, "atrocities" are manufactured to make the Serbs look bad while gaining sympathy for their opponents?  Could this be why the Serbs are branded "aggressors" in land they have lived on for over 600 years? 

Could our policy have something to do with the fact there are 540 members of Congress, none of whom are Orthodox Christians?  Could the State Department’s bitter bias, against General Draza Mihailovich, the anti-Communist guerrilla leader who saved us, be based on the fact he was a Serb?

Could these be the reasons the State Department has covered up the truth of our rescue all these years and opposed our petition to express   gratitude for saving over 500 American lives (a petition which is supported by the 8 million veterans of the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign  Wars and the Air Force Association and which has been approved by the United States Senate.)?

Could it be these are the reasons the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee has also denied our petition by saying to us here are "ethnic groups in Yugoslavia" who oppose it?

Are we mad?  You can bet your next month’s paycheck that we are mad!  We did not leave our families, risk our lives and watch our buddies get their arms, legs and heads blown off so that "ethnic groups in Yugoslavia" could tell us what we could or could not do in our own country.

Now that the spring thaw has set in, temperatures and tempers will start to rise in the volatile area you now find yourselves.  All we ask is that in your dealings with the local people you be made aware of the eyewitness experience of your fellow comrades-in-arms.  By speaking out now we have nothing to gain except a burning moral passion to tell the truth, a sworn duty to protect our national honor, a patriotic desire to express heart felt gratitude to those on foreign soil who save American lives while they are fighting in defense of our glorious country.

Now that you have been sent to foreign soil and asked to risk your lives we feel you should know the truth and not be "suckered in" by the rhetoric of highly paid public relations firms, foreign lobbyists and self-serving politicians who know absolutely nothing of the region’s history.

We might also add that had it not been for the Serbian people, Air Force General Donald J. Smith, our chairman and one our rescued airmen, would not have survived the war and been able to dedicate 40 years of honorable service to his country.

Had it not been for the Serbian people, technical Sgt. Curtis "Bud" Diles, another of our airmen, would not be alive today in Dayton, Ohio, enjoying retirement with his four children and 12 grandchildren.

There are hundreds of us with stories just like those.   Some of the greatest testimony to the many sacrifices made on our behalf us the many thousands of American children who are alive today solely because the Serbian people saved over 500 of their grandfathers during World War II.  Some of them could very well be serving with you today in Bosnia. 

I was one of three rescued American airmen who returned last year to the former Yugoslavia to commemorate the 50th anniversary of victory in Europe with the people who saved us and to visit the cow pasture that  served as a landing strip from which we were rescued.  The most moving  experience of our sentimental trip was being cheered by over 50,000 Serbs who gathered at a mountain top to welcome us and who kept chanting "USA, USA".

As American military men, we have a proud tradition of "duty, honor and country" to uphold and a fierce sense of loyalty to those with whom we fought side by side in combat.  We never forget their kindness nor do we return their battlefield sacrifices for us by bombing their women and children.  The Serbian people helped us when we were desperate and in trouble. Now that the situation is reversed we can do no less.

Please keep these untarnished truths in mind as you now serve our country and all it stands for, and may God bless you all as we pray for your safe return.

This war will not last long.  If for no other reason, it appears the US Forces are already running low on missiles.  And, Clinton’s blustering threats of "escorting the Albanian Kosovars back to their home" is silliness.

So far Clinton’s war has failed to even find ONE of Milosevic’s mobile units to shoot at.  How does he plan on personally escort back the reported 1,000,000 Albanians his spokespersons claim have fled the country?   The Serbs tied up 10 divisions of Hitler’s Crack troops—even after they lost the war.

If he continues the kind of bombing he conducted last couple of nights, he is going to lose the humanitarian war on CNN.  Pictures of mothers and newborn premature babies being evacuated from the hospital 100 yards from the Interior Ministry’s spectacular blaze, a father on the street being interviewed saying it was "easy for Clinton to drop bombs on the children from the skybut we will see what kind of man he is when he comes to our soil" or the flames from a residential area hit in last night’s bombing raids, are far more dramatic and horrifying than watching Albanian refugees who are riding trains to the border and walking across.

Pictures of bombs on civilian targets.  So far this week, over 1000 people are reported to have died so far in the bombing raids. That is a far higher death toll than Christiane Amanpour has been able to muster up in her drive to sell the Albanian side to a jaded, suspicious American public.

The world is seeing the results of the bombs.  The effort to portray the Serbs, as US News and World Report does in its April 12, 1999, issue on "Balkan Hell" as crazed killers is largely verbal so far.

Stories of "summary executions," US News and World Report noted, were hard to "prove" but are "quite credible given the Serbs’ vicious record.  These stories are being challenged by those, such as Col. Felman, USAF Ret., who have had personal experiences with the Serbs.

We are in a whole new kind of warfare, folks, and it appears that Milosevic has pretty much won it. It already sounds like the Clinton administration is trying to figure out who it can blame for the debacle.

Redacted for inclusion on this site.   Contact information:

Richard L. Felman Major USAF (Ret), President
National Committee of American Airmen
Rescued by General Mlhailovich, Inc.
PO Box 17478
Tuscon, Arizona 85731

DISCLAIMER: The content of this message is the sole responsibility of the originator. Posting of this message to the POW/MIA E-MAIL NETWORK © list does not show AIIPOWMIAI endorsement. It is provided so you may make an informed decision. AIIPOWMIAI is not associated in any capacity with any United States Government agency or entity, nor with any non-governmental organization.  Advocacy And Intelligence Index For Prisoners Of War/Missing In Action, Inc.1220 Locust Avenue, Bohemia, Long Island, New York 11716-2169 USA Voice: (1-516) 567-9057 Fax: (1-516) 244-7097 TDD: (1-516) 244-6996 E-mail: (Bob Necci) (Andi Wolos) Website:


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: airman; balkans; campaignfinance; flyboys; kia; mia; mihailovic; mihailovich; pilots; ploesti; pow; serbs; truman; us; usaaf; usaf; yugoslavia
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To: All

Here are some pictures of General Dragoljub "Cika Draza" Mihailovic and of the 54th Anniversary of Ravna Gora and the 50th Anniversary of V-E Day on the mountain top at Ravna Gora on May 13, 1995 in Serbia.

Commander in Chief
General Dragoljub "Cika Draza" Mihailovic

With the Chetnik High Command during WW2.

A WW2 Chetnik, 50 years later.

Rescued US airman, Maj. Richard Felman at Ravna Gora with the Draza Mihailovic Memorial

Capt. Lalich and Major Felman with the PRANJANI village priests in front of a memorial containing the names of the Chetniks from that area that were killed during World War II.

Chetniks and American Airmen commemorate the 54th Anniversary of Ravna Gora and the 50th Anniversary of V-E Day on the mountain top at Ravna Gora on May 13, 1995. Standing behind the man with the long stick is Capt. Nick Lalich and holding the flag is Major Richard Felman. To the left of Nick Lalich is Vojislav Mihailovich, the grandson of General Draza Mihailovich.

Rescued Airman Major Richard L. Felman with Chetnik Hat

A new generation of Chetniks at Ravna Gora.

A tearful first meeting between Richard Felman and Misha Stefanovich from Cacak, the son of the Chetnik corporal who saved his life over 50 years ago. After the war, the Communists killed Stefanovich’s father for allegedly turning Felman over to the Germans.


41 posted on 02/08/2003 5:18:22 PM PST by Karadjordje
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To: xJones
The only argument I would have with you is that Ali Bubba dosen't love El Presidente Fox of Mexico even more.

That's true because Fox represents millions to the Bush family through future sweetheart oil deals,and the Saud Royal family is old bidnez that is becoming high maintenence.

42 posted on 02/08/2003 5:25:30 PM PST by sneakypete
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To: CobaltBlue
CobaltBlue you can be more direct than this. Serbs practice the wrong religion. Clinton and the Democrats have to attack any religion not Roman or they loose Boston's vote.
"Times, they are changing" All moral religious people must unite against the Clinton's of the world. The Clinton's and the Demoncrats have been very successful in building a Godless society. We must fight back!!!!
43 posted on 02/08/2003 5:32:07 PM PST by Blake#1
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To: Karadjordje
44 posted on 02/08/2003 5:35:04 PM PST by Fiddlstix
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Karadjordje
45 posted on 02/08/2003 5:37:15 PM PST by prognostigaator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Karadjordje
46 posted on 02/08/2003 6:09:28 PM PST by CobaltBlue
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To: Justa
Serbs don't have any problems killing Christians. Croats are also Christians.
47 posted on 02/08/2003 6:10:29 PM PST by CobaltBlue
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To: Blake#1
Is the moon full? What are y'all drinking? Too much slivovitz, from the way y'all are raving.
48 posted on 02/08/2003 6:12:33 PM PST by CobaltBlue
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To: CobaltBlue
A special information for CobaltBlue from me:

"[...] Over the past year, THE NEW AMERICAN has profiled 25 of these extraordinary individuals in a series entitled '20th Century Heroes.' (Other worthy candidates could have been profiled, space permitting.) In one of those essays - the one honoring World War II freedom fighter Draza Mihailovich - Fr. James Thornton observes: 'Without heroes and without heroic sacrifices, there would be no liberty, no law, no order, no justice, no civilization, no great nations or peoples, and no history as we understand that word. Without heroes, such records as might exist among men would be squalid tales of cravenness and brutality.' But thanks to heroes, the history of the 20th century is not confined to "squalid tales of cravenness and brutality.' Liberty, law, order, justice, civilization, and great nations and peoples still exist, even though all are under attack. Without 20th century heroes, the Total State would have triumphed long ago; because of them we still have the opportunity to save our Christian-style civilization. [...]" (<- Click)

You should order this book.


49 posted on 02/08/2003 6:12:43 PM PST by Karadjordje
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To: Karadjordje
Draza Mihailovich fought the Communists. I doubt he'd be proud of Milosevic, a Communist.

I am surprised to see Communist sympathizers on Free Republic. Shame!
50 posted on 02/08/2003 6:18:06 PM PST by CobaltBlue
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To: CobaltBlue
Do I defend Draza or Slobodan?

Do I defend the Serbian people or Slobodan?

Do I accuse the people who abolished Communism or the one who committet crimes against Serbian civilians?


51 posted on 02/08/2003 6:46:11 PM PST by Karadjordje
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To: Karadjordje
Well, I said I thought that Milosovic should be executed, and you appeared to find that objectionable.
52 posted on 02/08/2003 6:55:38 PM PST by CobaltBlue
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To: CobaltBlue
Executed because he is a Communist or a Serb or both?

You sound like Adolf Hitler:

In 1939 Hitler said: "I have three enemies, the Serbs, the Jews and the Communists."

I don't know what your real origins are...

And further, what should we do with Alija Izetbegovic, an Islamist?

And tell me why F. Tudjman never went to Den Haag?


53 posted on 02/08/2003 7:39:45 PM PST by Karadjordje
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To: CobaltBlue
CobaltBlue wrote
Serbs don't have any problems killing Christians. Croats are also Christians.

Read what the



Miro Bajramovic

has to say about how he and his special police forces soldiers treated serbs in

1991 in Pakracka Poljana

, Croatia -

in his own words!

His testimony was published in the

Croatian weekly journal Feral Tribune

in September 1, 1997:



Independent weekly journal Feral Tribune published on September 1, 1997, an interview with Miro Bajramovic, ex- subcommander of the Croatian special police forces who was active during the war in 1991 in Pakracka Poljana. He directly accused some of the then high officials of the Croatian army and government.

President of the Croatian Helsinki Committee for Human Rights, Ivan Zvonimir Cicak, reacted immediately by writing a letter on September 1, 1997, at 10:57 am to the President of the Republic of Croatia, dr. Franjo Tudman, which we herewith enclose and as a consequence of which the following was undertaken: Miro Bajramovic was arrested that same day at 6 p.m. Later on four more persons, whose names were mentioned in the interview and who were directly involved in killings and executions in Pakracka Poljana were also arrested.

The editorial office of one of the most important informative programs on the state-controlled television "Motrista" severely attacked the CHC President, I. Z. Cicak for writing the letter and denunciating the Croatian state once again.

Feral Tribune, Split, Croatia, September 1, 1997

Editor's note:
There comes the time when the yesterday's bakers, painters, poets, chimney-sweepers and engineers turn into cold-blooded murderers over night. This is a story about one of them.

A phone rang in the editorial office of Feral. Forty-year-old Miro Bajramovic, mechanical engineer, father of four. Later it will be seen that besides these benign facts, Miro Bajramovic is, by his own confession, responsible for the death of 86 people, out of which he killed 72 with his own hands. He was a member of Mercep's unit "Autumn Rain" in Gospic, Pakracka Poljana serving a 4 month prison term. Unlike some of his fellow soldiers, who have in the meantime built restaurants and have been awarded medals from the President, Bajramovic is rejected and today has nothing except - as he says - a wonderful family.

He wanted to tell his story to the public, a story which certainly in this country is not the only one, but is nevertheless no less horrifying. We talked with him at several different locations (from Tuesday to Friday). That which follows is his complete story.


My name is Miro Bajramovic and I am directly responsible for the death of 86 people. I go to bed with this thought, and - if I sleep at all - I wake up with the same thought. I killed 72 people with my own hands, among them nine were women. We made no distinction, asked no questions; they were "Chetniks" [Serbs] and our enemies. The most difficult thing is to ignite a house or kill a man for the first time; but afterwards, everything becomes routine. I know the names and surnames of those I killed.

I was born 1/30/1957 in Zenica [Bosnia-Hercegovina]; I have no memory of my father, and my mother died in 1990. I finished mechanics school in Zenica and moved to Zagreb, where I got a job in Janko Gredelj, in steam locomotives department at the main railway station. Later on I got a job in the "Rade Koncar" factory, where I was given a chance to further my studies. I graduated from the University for Mechanics. In 1990 I lost my job and soon received an invitation from the Ministry of the Interior.

I met Tomislav Mercep in 1991 in the village of Dalj. We fought together from that time on, and had been through many things together. Our unit was named "The Autumn Rains" i.e. officially the 1st special unit of MUP. Croatian soldiers knew very well who was in "Autumn Rain" units.


Before going to Pakracke Poljane, somewhere in the autumn of 1991, we were in Gospic. We conquered the military base, headed towards Lovinac, but were ordered to return. It was enough to be a Serb in Gospic to mean that you did not exist anymore. Our unit liquidated some 90 to 100 people in less than a month there. Therefore, it is not true what Vekic said - in an interview published in your newspapers - that 170 people were killed in Gospic; nobody was there at that time performing the liquidation except us.

That story about a doctor from Gospic is also false: he was not killed, he committed suicide. It is also untrue that we burned 50 Serbs in one house. We did kill but never by means of burning.

The role of Tihomir Oreskovic; I think he is a good man and it was good working with him. Due to our friendship I'd rather not talk about him. The order for Gospic was to perform "ethnic cleansing", so we killed directors of post offices and hospitals, a restaurant owner and many other Serbs. Executions were performed by shooting at point blank range since we did not have much time. I repeat, orders from the headquarters were to reduce the percentage of Serbs in Gospic.

We went to Slano four times and liquidated 13 persons there, all Serbs. Their centre was in the village of Vukovici, between Slano and Dubrovnik. I killed 8 out of 13. I was together with Sinisa Rimac, Miroslav Brisevac, Miljenko Zadro, Igor Mikula, and little Gordana (I cannot recall her family name).


We arrived in Pakracka Poljana on October 6, 1997 after returning from Gospic. In the beginning, the fire station served as our headquarters and prison. At that time a photographer arrived from Zagreb and filmed our location; within few days, the site was bombed, and so we moved our headquarters to the end of the village and the prison in the school in Me­uriµi, towards Kutina. I must say that it was not our decision that our base be situated in that place; we were ordered to keep the territory around Pakrac safe; later on when Boljkovac (then the minister of the Interior) and Mercep arrived on the site, they agreed that the base be placed there (in Pakracke Poljane). Our first action was an assault on a Serb base in Kukunjevac, a village 18 km long, which we fired on for four hours.

We kept prisoners in the school cellar; and when we had more prisoners, we would put them in classrooms. Nights were the worst for them, since it was then that we "interrogated them" ...; this consisted of finding the best way to inflict the greatest pain in order to make them confess the most amount of information.

Do you know which is the best way? Burning prisoner with a flame, pour vinegar over their wounds, mostly on genitalia and on the eyes. Then there is that little inductor, field phone, you plug a Serb onto that; it is a direct current which cannot kill, but it is very irritating. You ask him where he comes from, he says from Dvor, and you then dial a number in that place. Or, a five-wire cable would be stuck into a prisoner's rectum and was left there for hours so that they couldn't sit.

Wounds were opened and salt or vinegar scattered over them; we did not let the bleeding stop. The prison commander Mijo Jolic forced them to learn on the same day the Croatian anthem; today he possess- just like Suljic- restaurants all over Croatia. Why don't I have anything?

When I recall all that torturing, I wonder they managed to think of all of those methods. For example, the most painful is to stick little pins under the nails and to connect it to the three-phase current; nothing remains of a man but ashes. I would never think of that, although I do know of the Lenz law. I was doing the interrogation of prisoners, but I never harassed them nor did I enjoy that; but some did, as Munib Suljic for example. We only cared about the results he would get, we did not bother with the means he used. After all, we knew that they would all be killed, so it did not matter if we hurt him more today or tomorrow. During the torture, people would confess all they knew, or what they were asked for. We did play some kind of a democratic police at the beginning and would give papers to Serbs to write all they knew, for instance names or locations.


T. Mercep was commander of Poljane, I was the subcommander. Mercep knew everything. He did not participate directly in the liquidation, but he read about what we did in our reports, though most of the reports were conducted orally. He knew about each execution, because he was a commander and was a very charismatic person. He told us several times: "Tonight you have to clean all these shits." This meant that all prisoners should be executed. If you did not carry out everything that was ordered, then they said that you were a traitor. We killed both Serbs and Croats in Pakracka Poljana. The village was echoing with screams. People heard cries and whines coming from prisons but were afraid to tell us anything. Everybody knew that if they asked anything at all, they would end up in prison.

Who were these Croats? Well, the most beautiful one was Marina Nuic. Then Aleksandar Antic, although many incorrectly claimed that he was a Serb. Ten police ID cards were found in his car. He was accused of being a traitor and was executed. Zvonimir Trusic gave orders for his execution. Antic told Mikula: Please, I would like you to kill me. And he did. A bullet from a magnum to his head. He had to dig his own grave before the execution. Suljic, Rimac and Mikula beat him terribly at the Velesajam (the collective centre), it was only when he was brought down that he was really interrogated.

Then there was Ilija Horvat, whose only sin was to invite both Croats and Serbs into his home. Then there was an Italian, because there is an Italian village in the vicinity of Poljana. And this Italian, like all Italians, was corrupt. We arrested him and killed him without any discussion. I personally killed him.

Once I stated that every person that I killed, died happy. I issued them release forms written on tiny bits of paper and let them go home. Then I waited for them with a sniper. They died with a smile. This Italian stole an automatic rifle, which was kept in the school building and which he sold to the Serbs.


We did not separate Serb civilians and soldiers from each other. If we found a rifle hidden in his/her house, we considered him/her a Chetnik. Serbs at the time could not survive, because there is a saying: wherever we trod, the grass does not grow again. As far as I know, more then 50 Serbs were taken to Poljana from Zagreb. The closest of Mercep's associates - Rimac, Suljic, Mikula, Hodak and I were in charge of bringing them to Pakracka Poljana. We worked in two groups, one was in charge of taking them to Velesajam, and the other of taking them further. I mostly attended arrests, because I am a rhetoric and I tried to be civil in such occasions. I always told prisoners that I was only doing my job. I even have a witness for this - his name is Stevan Barjanovic - he can boast that he was the only Serb who survived Pakracka Poljana.

First, we arrested Milos Ivosevic, state director of customs. When we came to his office and talked to his secretary, a Croat, she was afraid to tell us his whereabouts. We found him on Rudeska cesta while he was building a house, and he told me: "In the end you Croats will be cleaning our shoes." He was directly responsible for the attack on the Krnjak police station, where 11 of our fellow-soldiers died, so we did not have any mercy towards him. We interrogated him for 4-5 days, after which he mentioned the name of Stevan Barjanovic.

I came to Stevan' s house on the day of his mother's death. I deeply apologised for the things I was doing. He started off towards Velesajam with his Toyota, and he had a smoked ham in his car. I, acting like an idiot, took this ham from him and took it to the bar "Stela" and gave it to Zvonko Trusic and told him to slice it up for our boys. Later on, in the course of his investigation, Stevan said that I treated him well; but then he asked about his ham. Fuck the ham! This is how I nearly ended up as a war profiteer, although I never even tasted it.

I cannot call Serb a gentleman, but I admire him for the fact that in the course of the investigative procedure he held to truth and facts, and in fact he could have said all kinds of things against us. I do not know whether he did it because he was afraid, because at the time we executed a majority of witnesses. Barjanovic is maybe not aware that he is the only Serb who survived Pakracka Poljana. He survived because he was accidentally wounded in prison, and Dzemal Peles, the idiot, took him to the hospital in Kutina, instead of killing him. He became crown witness later and he could have told everything. O.K, such was the order coming from the highest authorities and investigative judges did not insist on details.


It is difficult to say how long we held prisoners. This depended on how long it took us to wear them out. In most cases we held them 4-5 days before we killed them. If they had survived, they would not have been normal. Serbs, who were good and loyal served us by digging graves, we told them that they were digging covers for machine guns. Once, one of the prisoners from Kutina said that this was the 15th or 16th cover that he was digging. He was executed on the spot. It wasn't up to him to count but to dig.

Self-interest was very popular at the moment. Thirty of us went some 50 meters in front of the first tank. We cleaned and executed everyone. After us there were others who called themselves "mercepovci", who stole from the houses and then burnt them. These were Ma­eralo and Rukavina ... Mercep told us to take everything away from the Serbs, and the money we found should be handed over to Headquarters for purchasing arms. However, Trusic, Mercep, and Rukavina, who was called Pop and Nedeljko Posavec, divided the money amongst themselves. How do I know that? A day before the murder of Pavo Mlinaric, Posavec and Rukavina shot at each other because they did not split the money equally. Posavec was removed from the unit, however the money was not taken away from him, and it wasn't merely a question of 1000 or 100000 DM, but much more.

I could not say that mass executions were carried out in Pakracka Poljana. These were mostly groups of 7 to 10 people. It actually depended on how many people were in the prison at the time. Sometimes we executed people in their homes, and then blew up the house. There were no bodies left. There were many houses like this, mostly in the village of Bujavica.

We were thinking along these lines at the time; kill the children of a Serb because they survive at 20 degrees below freezing. I did not have any feelings at the time towards Serbs as being human beings like us, that they are somebody's father, brothers, children....No, we did not kill children, except for Suljic who killed little Aleksandra Zec. I saved 10 children by my own hands in Vocin. I would not be able to look into my little daughter's eyes if I had killed children.

According to my estimate, there were 280 people all together killed in Poljana, including 10 women. Besides Marina Nuic, there was a Nada from the village of Kusonja who was infiltrated among us. There was a very old lady also in whose house they found a sniper. Besides this old lady, all women were raped and then killed. That's the truth.

It is my firm belief that if it hadn't been for the Zec family, nothing would have been known about Pakracka Poljana. It was the main key and the main reason why the unit has been looked at from this angle, and there were many Pakracka Poljanas in Croatia.


There is only one thing that I cannot understand - why do they make the Zec family seem charismatic? It is a well known thing that Mihajlo Zec worked for the other side, for the Serbs, although he belonged the HDZ party and tried to help the Croatian army. The fact is that while we were holding our positions in Dobrovac near Lipik we found out that Milorad Zec, Mihajlo's brother, was returning home every night from Subotska to sleep there. We even waited for him one night in his house in Dobrovac.

We can talk about the way we conducted the interrogation of our prisoners - but there are no secrets here - we beat and physically abused prisoners in any way possible in order to extort their confession. That is when he confessed for whom and what his brother did.

When I came to Zagreb, I issued an order for Mihajlo Zec's arrest. Mercep gave me this order. Mihajlo Zec was more worth to us alive then dead. However, Munib Suljic, intoxicated and drugged out, joined on his own initiative, the group which was supposed to arrest Mihajlo Zec. I told Sinisa Rimac that only in case of resisting the arrest should M. Zec be executed. He tried to escape, Rimac let him go, although it is very hard for me to understand how a 19 year old man like him could not stop Zec. Well, maybe it was just a question of the moment, and then he shot him.

Then suddenly Munib Suljic appeared driving a blue van, without licence plates, because our arrests around Zagreb were carried out by vehicles without licence plates and in uniforms without insignias, to pick up little Aleksandra and Mrs. Zec. He first took them to the Panorama hotel, then to Sljeme and then he killed them there.

A few days ago Suljic's statement issuing a denial that he had never confessed the crime was published in Nacional. It is true that upon his arrest, Suljic told everything, confessed everything, and then took the police officers to Sljeme and showed the location of their graves. Then he confessed that he himself did the killings. The most tragic thing was that he threatened Nebojsa Hodak-Cena, Igor Mikula, Sinisa Rimac and little Snjezana Zivkovic from Gospic, and he even forced Mikula to fire 20 bullets at little Aleksandra and Mrs. Zec. This was in order for him to be sure, and then he forced them to bury the bodies.

This is the mere reason why they were involved in this affair. Rimac publicly admitted in the course of the investigation: I killed Mihajlo Zec, but do not accuse me of other things". That's the truth. Today they make Mihajlo Zec look like a hero and tales are told that he died in vain. If it were up to me, if I were the one to publish some newspaper, I would write more about Marina Nuic, because she is the one that really died in vain.


Who killed Marina Nuic? By name and surname? Igor Mikula. He was following orders which were issued by Dzemal Pelesa, the former doorman in the Zagreb Transportation Services. There were certain improvisations concerning the attempts to assassinate Tomislav Mercep, who was at the time at the Rebro hospital. She was raped 19 times by Munib Suljic and executed. She did not say a word. She only said: "Miro, let them kill me at once". I can show you her grave. Her parents still do not know where she was buried. The place is called Janja Lipa and is situated near Pakracka Poljana.

However, let us see the reasons why she was killed. Branko Caric Kosa, Mikula and I think Rimac and Ceno guarded Mercep at the hospital, you know, stood in front of his door, because, Mercep was visited by more then 200 people daily. Then information leaked out that Mercep was supposed to get a pen from Marina Nuic and that that pen would kill him.

Marina came with the Rijeka brigade and she was, my God, only 5 days with us. One night she called me, and invited me for a drink, my witness is Franjo Nemet, in the one liquor store called "Domovina", and it was one of the places where we drank. We met there that night. She had beautiful hair that night, straight falling on her back, mahogany colour. Mercep was wounded in Lovska a few days earlier. The troops from Rijeka failed to protect us, and we found ourselves surrounded by enemy troops. People from Cazma were slaughtered there. She looked at me for a very long time and said: "When will this war end, and what is still ahead of us?"

I told her like this: "Marina, there is only tomorrow for us and nothing else, and the day will come". She was later arrested. I did not know that this would happen. They put her in our detention centre in Me­uric. She was a woman and she was beaten there severely...

I would like to contact Marina's parents, because I am a father too, and I would like to know everything about my child. Marina came to our unit together with 200 people from Rijeka, because at the time we had many problems with a shortage of men. There were many soldiers at the time in Zagreb, but they mostly waged war drinking at the bar.

When it came to the point to go into the field to fight, few of them actually came. We were rather well-known at the time, that we were mostly engaged in clearing the territory and that we fought direct battles with Chetniks, that we confronted tanks at a distance of 50 meters and that we simply did not fool around. We started off towards Lovska. Thirty-two of us fell into a trap. However we counted on 500 people from Rijeka, who were 500 meters behind us, and if one of them had fired only one shot, we would have been able to get out of it. However, when they heard that we had lost our first tank, they turned around and ran away. We somehow managed to get out of there and found people from Rijeka some 8 kilometres behind us. They threw away their arms and we made them leave for Rijeka the following morning. We did not need soldiers like that. However, I chose among all of them some 10 people who deserved to stay. That is how Marina stayed and today I feel sorry for not letting her go. She was so innocent, she did not know how to cry, she only wept.

Her execution was not ordered by her name or surname, but it was merely said that the prison should be cleansed, and that meant that prisoners should be executed, among them Marina.


I would like to issue a denial of the statement made by Ivan Vekic in the last Feral. He lied, he knew everything. I can tell him how many orders our unit received from him. He would say: "I demand that you do this, this and this". We never returned without completing the order, and these were mostly executions. It was his order that Milos Ivosevic should be killed, and because of him we had to kill the last living Serb from Poljane Stevan Brajanovic.

It is not the case, as Vekic stated, that there was a separate Mercep and Mika unit. Mika Cvitanovic took over the unit after Mercep dissolved it on January 30, 1992 and after the unit became a part of the First National Guard Brigade. This is when Mika made some sort of insignia which indicated that this was both Mercep's and Mika's brigade. This made Mercep very angry. Our unit was called "Autumn Rain". I repeat, Ivan Vekic knew everything.


I was in prison from January 2nd to April 30th of 1992. It was the saddest moment for me when Croatia was recognised on January 15 and I was in the Remetinec prison. We were released when Seks became public prosecutor, but we were released in two groups. Mikula, Hodak, Snjezana Zivkovic, Suljic and Rimac remained for forty days longer in prison because of the Zec case.

The first month in prison they behaved rudely towards us. No, nobody could touch us, because if there would have been some physical misconduct, I think there would no longer be a police station in ðordiceva Street. Mercep had a lot of influence in this, as he was the one that organised our defence, as well as Ivan Vekic, who is now going public with all sorts of nonsense. At that time he was on our side. Maybe I have already said this, but Justice Jovanovic and Justice Horvatinovic were very co-operative and they did not ask for any details.


I was silent about this for a long time, expecting that someone in this country would remember that I exist. My children eat just like Mercep's do, yet he has two houses in Zagreb, two apartments and a house on Brac, and he came from Vukovar without a Kuna (a dime) in his pocket. Then, Stipe Spajic, Manderalo à how did they earn all that they now possess. Let them tell me how I should earn something as well. I am ready to dig and I will dig, I do not find this disgraceful. I expect that Tudman will invite me personally after all this and that he will ask me why all this was necessary. I will tell him: "Only for my children". I am only looking for a job and that my family have a roof over their head.

I am a big believer. I have on my finger a rosary-ring from Medugorje. God forgives everything to a certain limit. I think I have been punished enough up to now for what I did. My lifelong dream would be satisfied if my children have their subsistence ensured, because I know very well what will happen to me after this story, but I would like somebody to take care of my children. I really do have a beautiful marriage and a beautiful family, two small children. My wife knows about everything I did since this was the only way that we could live together.

I do not feel any sense of relief after telling you my story. I am afraid of my unit. These are experienced professionals who do not miss often. And I know that the Hague is unavoidable as well.


President of the Republic of Croatia
Franjo Tudman
10 000 Zagreb
Pantovcak 241

Esteemed Sir,

A shocking interview with the engineer Miro Bajramovic, a former member of the special police forces which had been active in the homeland war, was published in the weekly journal Feral Tribune on September 1, 1997.

The fact that Mr. Bajramovic very thoroughly depicted and described the events which occurred during the war and which are punishable as war crimes under the Criminal Code of the Republic of Croatia, as well as the Statute of the International War Tribunal, I request that Mr. Bajramovic and his family be given full protection.

Namely, Mr. Bajramovic has announced a possibility of retaliation against himself on behalf of his former fellow-soldiers. Since Mr. Bajramovic delivers some facts in his interview which will jeopardise certain persons who held very high positions in the Croatian government, the Committee demands that you personally use your authority and position in order to protect Mr. Bajramovic, not only as a potential witness in domestic and Hague tribunals, but as well as a possible defendant, since he himself admitted that he had personally executed 72 persons, of which 9 were women.

By respecting the legal principles of the state, the Croatian Helsinki Committee for Human Rights does not wish to influence in any way the work of the legal institutions in the Republic of Croatia, however we freely believe that there are more then enough elements which can be found in Bajramoviµ's statements which public prosecutor, Mr. Hranjski, should take into consideration while at least initiating criminal investigation against Mr. Bajramovic. We wish to inform you that the Committee has informed the Prosecutor's Office in the Hague concerning the content of the interview.

Finally it is our opinion that this would be the best protection for Mr. Bajramovic from the retaliation of his fellow-soldiers. Since the Committee, at the same time, understands the practical realism of the whole situation in which the Croatian society and the state on the whole is placed, we wish to inform you that in case something "accidentally" happens to Mr. Bajramovic, the Committee will hold you responsible.

Lastovo, September 1, 1997

For the Committee:
Ivan Zvonimir Cicak

Ms Louise Arbour
Prosecutor's Office
Churchillplein 1
2517 JW The Hague
P.O. Box 13888
2501 EW The Hague

Esteemed Ms. Arbour,

As announced in our letter of 01/09/1997, we submit herewith the translation of the text published in the September 1, 1997 issue of the weekly Feral Tribune.

As you already know, the CHC President sent a letter on 01/09/97 at 10, 57 a.m. to the President of the Republic, dr. Franjo Tudman concerning the matter.

The TV evening news informed the public about Mr. Bajramovic's arrest, under suspicion of committing criminal acts liable to punishment.

Executive Director
Bozo Kovacevic"

Source: (<- click)

CobaltBlue wrote:

Keep on laughting, defender of Croatian fascist Ustasha and Bosnian Islamist Mudshahedins


54 posted on 02/09/2003 4:32:09 AM PST by Karadjordje
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To: CobaltBlue
CobaltBlue wrote
"Crazy, indeed, and crude revisionism. Some Serbs collaborated with the Nazis, some Croats and Bosnians fought the Nazis."

Dear Editor

Survivors of the Buchenwald Concentration Camp, USA

Letters to the Editor
New York times

Survivors of the Buchenwald Concentration Camp, USA
PO Box 14, Homecrest Station, Brooklyn NY 11229

May 20, 1996

Letters to the Editor
New York times
Dear Editor:

In an important story, "Croatian War-Shrine Plan Revives Pain", which describes the attempt by Croatian President Franjo Tudjman to minimize the victims of the holocaust, "NYTimes" reporter Chris Hedges makes a number of serious errors. He falsely asserts that Croatian Serbs "trashed the small Museum in Jasenovac." In fact, the Jasenovac Museum was destroyed by departing Croatian troops who captures the area briefly in September of 1991, according to accounts in the London " Independent", the Washington "Times" and a documentary film by Michael Ignatieff . While generally ignored by the world community, the desecration of this shrin caused anguish among Serbs, Jews and Gypsies, whose relatives perished at this ghastly camp.

Hedges also shrinks the number of victims of Jasenovac much in the manner of Tudjman, who is being duly criticized. citing anonymous "independent scholars in t he United States," Hedges laces the numbers of Jasenovac victims at 80,000. Based on German sources, such as Hitler's envoy Herman Neubacher, Holocaust historia n Simon Wiesenthal uses the figure of 750,000 Serbian holocaust victims, the bul k of whom were killed in Jasenovac. German officer Ernst Fik also put the number of victims at more than 700, 000. Dr. Walter Reich, current director of the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington refers to "several hundred thousand" slaughtered at Jasenovac in a recent article criticizing Tudjman's plan to bury execu tors with victims.

Yugoslavia was never taken through the process of the deNazification that the a llies required the Germans to undergo. For this reason, the enormity of the crim es of the crimes of the Nazi-allied Ustashe and the Muslim SS Handzar are little known in the West. Ironically, with US help, Franjo Tudjman was able to accompl ish last year what the Nazis and their World War II collaborators could not, nam ely the uprooting of the entire Serbian Krajina population which inhabited the r egion for our hundreds years. The World War II fascist regime of Ante Pavelic is being officially rehabilitated in Croatia today. Street and public buildings ar e being names after the architects of the Holocaust, Nazi-era currency revived, while the numbers and scope of the human carnage are being rewritten.

John Ranz
Chairman Survivors of the Buchenwald Camp

The Oath of Buchenwald (taken after the liberation of the camp by the surviving prisoners, on April 18, 1945). "We promise the millions of the dead comrades to devote the rest of our lives to the elimination of Nazism, Fascism, and their roots from the face of the earth, and to build a society based on peace and justice."

Oh sure, i believe you, CobaltBlue, the Serbs collaborated with the Nazis. Croats and Bosnians fought the Nazis. I think that you are not a Muslim but a Croatian who is defending the Fascist F. Tudjman. You're right, what a crude revisionism. Can you lend me your Book "Wastelands -- Historical Truth" written by F. Tudjman?


55 posted on 02/09/2003 5:00:31 AM PST by Karadjordje
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To: *balkans
56 posted on 02/09/2003 6:20:22 AM PST by DestroyEraseImprove
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To: Karadjordje
No, I am American. I've studied the Holocaust and the history of the Nazi party, so I know that attempts to paint any group as all Nazi or all victim are doomed to fail under the light of truth.

In every country the Nazis conquered, there were both collaborators and resisters. No ethnic group was without its heros and villains.

The Holocaust did happen.

Srebrenica did happen, too.

57 posted on 02/09/2003 8:01:26 AM PST by CobaltBlue
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To: Karadjordje
I am laughing at you because you don't want to talk about all the people murdered by Serbs. Why not?
58 posted on 02/09/2003 8:10:28 AM PST by CobaltBlue
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To: Karadjordje
It is a blot forever on the US military that they followed the orders of Bill Clinton. Illegal orders are not to be followed. Nuremberg proved the folly of that.
59 posted on 02/09/2003 8:15:50 AM PST by Trickyguy
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To: sneakypete
And you know that Bush has those cozy financial/oil relationships with Fox, how? You should get a job with the CIA if you have such info and can verify it.
60 posted on 02/09/2003 9:09:32 AM PST by Paulus Invictus
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