Bleiburg Massacre and Wikipedia

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Wikipedia's old article on the Bleiburg massacre was an article that read as if it was written by the former Communist Party of Yugoslavia. It was written in a non-encyclopaedic fashion and it had a dated writing approach that is reminiscent of the propaganda of the former Yugoslavia.

The older article was mainly written by Editors from Croatia (Neo-Communists extremists) and supported by other Editors and Wikipedia-Administrators who have communist leanings and does not represent contemporary views. The article was written in a child-like manner and reads like Communist's rhetoric spin.

Update: Wikipedian Editor Joy and others are attempting to make it less bias. The article has been renamed 'Bleiburg Repatriations'.

George Orwell once stated:

Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable [1]

These events of repatriation into Yugoslav society ( i.e. forced death marches- referring to Way of the Cross massacres), the European Public Hearing on “Crimes Committed by Totalitarian Regimes" stated:

  • The victims of these events were estimate to be 100 000.
  • 581 mass graves. [2]
  • There were a large number of civilians.
  • Many of the victims were also women.
  • There were a large number of regular POW army units.
  • Labour camps and concentration camps were established in Slovenia (a former republic of Yugoslavia) under communist rule after the end of the World War Two in Slovenia.

(Please read: Titoism and Totalitarianism for information on the European Commission)

Below is a Scientific Journal's perspective written by Historian Zdravko Dizdar from the University of Zagreb:

An Addition to the Research of the Problem of Bleiburg & Way of the Cross:
  • An addition to the Research of the Problem of Bleiburg and Way of the Cross. This paper dedicated to the 60th anniversary of these tragic events represents a small step towards the elaboration of known data and brings a list of yet unknown and unpublished original documents, mostly belonging to the Yugoslavian Military and Political Government 1945-1947.

  • Amongst those documents are those mostly relating to Croatian territory although a majority of concentration camps and execution sites were outside of Croatia, in other parts of Yugoslavia. The author hopes that the readers will receive a complete picture about events related to Bleiburg and the Way of The Cross and the suffering of numerous Croats, which is confirmed directly in many documents and is related to the execution of a person or a whole group of people and sometimes non-stop for days.[3]

Yugoslavia and the Bleiburg Massacres

The Yugoslav regime was desperate to keep the massacres a secret however this all changed after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the break up of Yugoslavia. These events happened after the end of World War Two. It has been written that the massacres were a revenge [4][5] against the war crimes that were committed by the Nazi element of the retreating Axis Forces.[6] This is true, but it is only part of the picture. The communists executed,[7] without trial, a huge number of people that were deemed guilty by association only.[8]

Note: Reference information below from Identity Politics in the Age of Genocide: The Holocaust and Historical by David B. MacDonald. (p168):

The Partisans also carried out massacres, best known being at Bleiburg (Austria), where retreating Croatian and Slovenian forces and their families were massacred.[9]

Encyclopaedia Britannica on events post World War Two in Yugoslavia:

British commanders refused to accept their surrender and handed them over to the Partisans, who took a merciless revenge. Tens of thousands, including many civilians, were subsequently slaughtered on forced marches and in death camps. [10]

Note: Reference information below from Milko Mikola- Crimes Committed by Totalitarian Regimes. Chapter 3. Mass killings without court trials. (p163-p164)

(organised by the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union and the European Commission) [11]

  • The Main Headquarters of the Yugoslav Army had already called attention to respecting the Geneva Convention on 3rd of May in its order on the treatment of prisoners of war. However, despite this injunction, both prisoners of war and civilians were killed on mass at the end of May and in the first half of June 1945 in Slovenia. Tito’s telegram on respecting the Geneva Convention was later revoked; however, it could only be revoked by the person who issued it in the first place, i.e. Tito himself.
  • It is estimated, mainly on the basis of graves discovered up to now, that around 100,000 captured members of different military formations and civilians from all parts of Yugoslavia were killed without a court trial in Slovenia.[12]

Aleksandar Rankovic

According to the scientific research of Z.Dizdar, Partisan General Aleksandar Rankovic (head of the military intelligence post World War Two, the infamous UDBA)[13] was only answerable to Josip Broz Tito. Aleksandar Rankovic played a major role in these executions and the only person who could give Rankovic such an order was Tito. The executions have some similarity to the Soviet Purges and the massacre of Polish troops.

Note: NKVD (Soviet Union) executed tens of thousands of Polish political prisoners in 1939-1941/ Katyn massacre link.

Aleksandar Rankovic at a Belgrade government meeting stated:

Through our prisons has passed between 1945 and 1951, 3 777 776 prisoners, while we killed 586 000 enemies of the people. Taken from Politika, Belgrade/1 February 1951 (p.1) [14]

Joze Dezman

Joze Dezman (director of the National Museum of Contemporary History in Ljubljana, (Slovenia) described the fundamental characteristics of the post-Second World War crimes:

Killing civilians and prisoners of was after Second World War is the greatest massacre of unarmed people of all times in Slovenian territory. Compared to Europe, the Yugoslav communist massacres after the Second World War are probably right after the Stalinist purges and the Great Famine in the Ukraine. The number of those killed in Slovenia in spring of 1945 can now be estimated at more than 100,000, Slovenia was the biggest post- War killing site in Europe.

It was a mixture of events, when in Slovenia there are retreating German units, collaborator units, units of Independent State of Croatia, Chetniks and Balkan civilians; more than 15,000 Slovenia inhabitants were murdered as well. Because of its brevity, number of casualties, way of execution and massiveness, it is an event that can be compared to the greatest crimes of communism and National Socialism. International Law Observer -link

Croatian Medical Journal

  • Aim:To report on the use of STR, Y-STRs, and miniSTRs typing methods in the identification of victims of revolutionary violence and crimes against humanity committed by the Communist Armed Forces during and after World War II in which bodies were exhumed from mass and individual graves in Slovenia.
  • In 2006, the Commission for Recording and Managing Hidden Graves of the Major of the Municipality of Skofja Loka (a city located around 40 km to the northwest from the Slovenian capital Ljubljana) put in a significant effort to identify victims of the Communist Armed Forces discovered in 2 hidden mass graves uncovered at the location Lovrenska Grapa. [15]


  • European Public Hearing on CRIMES COMMITTED BY TOTALITARIAN REGIMES, organised by the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (January–June 2008) and the European Commission.[16]
(EUROPA EU. Press Releases-Brussels)
  • Edited by Peter Jambrek.[17] Published by Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union Crimes and other gross and large scale human rights violations committed during the reign of totalitarian regimes in Europe: cross- national survey of crimes committed and of their remembrance, recognition, redress, and reconciliation.
  • BBC-History: Partisan Fighters War in the Balkans 1941-1945. Dr Stephen A Hart: Senior lecturer in war studies at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. Author of 'The Road to Falaise: Operations Totalize & Tractable' (Alan Sutton 2004), 'Montgomery and Colossal Cracks': The 21st Army Group in Northwest Europe,1944-45' (Praeger, 2000).

BBC History stated:

Murder, rape and mass executions were all too common in Yugoslavia during World War Two - carried out by Partisan fighters as well as by Chetnik rebels and German troops.

  • Below: "Michael Palaich interviewed WWII Nuremberg War Crimes Prosecutor Gerald Draper on whether Tito and his Yugoslav partizans could be charged with war crimes for slaughtering surrendered Croats and Croat civilians using criteria established by the Allied War Crimes Tribunals following WWII."

See also


  1. ^ The State of the Language by Christopher Ricks & Leonard Michaels
  2. ^ U 581 Grobnici je 100.000 žrtava. English version: The Jutarnji newspaper reported on the 01/10/2009 commissions find, in all it is estimated that there are 100 000 victims in 581 mass graves
  3. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Hrcak Portal of Scientific Journals of Croatia: An Addition to the Research of the Problem of Bleiburg & Way of the Cross". 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-07. Check date values in: |date= (help) Scientific Journal by Zdravko Dizdar University of Zagreb
  4. ^ Encyclopedia of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity, Volume 3 by Dinah Shelton Macmillan Reference, 2005 - Political Science (p.1170)
  5. ^ <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>" "Yugoslavia."Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity. Ed. Dinah L. Shelton. Gale Cengage, 2005. 2006. 26 Jun, 2010 Yugoslavia: Genocide & Crimes Against Humanity-Mark Thompson". 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-07. Check date values in: |date= (help)
    • "The killing continued after the war, as Tito's victorious forces took revenge on their real and perceived enemies. British forces in Austria turned back tens of thousands of fleeing Yugoslavs. Estimates range from 30,000 to 55,000 killed between spring and autumn 1945."
  6. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica: Independent State of Croatia
  7. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica - Slovenia (a former republic of Yugoslavia):
    • "After the armistice the British repatriated more than 10,000 Slovene collaborators who had attempted to retreat with the Germans, and Tito had most of them massacred at the infamous Pits of Kocevje".
  8. ^ Balkan Strongmen: Dictators and Authoritarian Rulers of South Eastern Europe by Bernd Jurgen Fischer. (p283)
  9. ^ Identity Politics in the Age of Genocide: The Holocaust and Historical by David B. MacDonald. (p168)
  10. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica: Croatia
  11. ^ The European Commission:
    • "The Commission is independent of national governments. Its job is to represent and uphold the interests of the EU as a whole. It drafts proposals for new European laws, which it presents to the European Parliament and the Council. It is also the EU’s executive arm – in other words, it is responsible for implementing the decisions of Parliament and the Council. That means managing the day-to-day business of the European Union: implementing its policies, running its programmes and spending its funds. Like the Parliament and Council, the European Commission was set up in the 1950s under the EU’s founding treaties."
  12. ^ European Public Hearing on “Crimes Committed by Totalitarian Regimes" (p163-p164)
  13. ^ Titoism in Action: The Reforms in Yugoslavia After 1948 by Fred Warner Neal. Second chapter (p214):
    • "In a totalitarian state, personal freedom and human rights invariably most at the hands of unrestrained police activity. That Yugoslavia was no exception was admitted by Aleksandar Rankovic, himself head of secret police or State Security Administration. This organization is known in Yugoslavia as UDBA."
  14. ^ Communist Crime is not Antifascism Released on International Human Rights Day, 10 DECEMBER 2008. On behalf of the participants in public meetings Maja Runje, a member of the Steering Committee- Zagreb (p. 19). Article is in Croatian: KOMUNISTIČKI ZLOČINI NISU ANTIFAŠIZAM] POVODOM MEĐUNARODNOG DANA LJUDSKIH PRAVA,10. PROSINCA 2008. U ime sudionika javnog okupljanja Maja Runje, članica Koordinacijskog odbora Kruga za trg10 000 Zagreb, Jurjevska 47a (str. 19)
  15. ^ Identification of Skeletal Remains of Communist Armed Forces Victims During and After World War II: Combined Y-chromosome Short Tandem Repeat (STR) and MiniSTR Approach-Croatian Medical Journal.
  16. ^ European Public Hearing on "Crimes Committed by Totalitarian Regimes” Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (January–June 2008) and the European Commission
  17. ^ Council of Europe-Parliamentary Assembly

External links

Wikipedia has become the new battleground for Israel's PR image. The Yisrael Sheli (My Israel) movement and the Yesha Council, which represents Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, have joined together for a new public relations initiative. Together they will soon offer a special course for volunteers who wish to write and edit English entries on Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia. (Israel National News)
  • Simo Dubajic- Link Former Yugoslav Partizan Commander: Simo Dubajic published a book entitled Život, Grijeh i Kajanje (Life, Sin and Killing).The book is a detail account about the post World War Two massacre of Croatian POWs (Way of the Cross Massacres) at Kocevski Rog, Slovenia.
In May 1945, the British Army in Austria put 12,000 Slovene soldiers on board trains. The Slovenes thought they were on their way to freedom in Italy. Their true destination was Slovenia, and death.Slovenia 1945 follows the fate of Slovene anti-Communists who fled to Austria at the end of World War II. The British Army sent them back home, where their war-time enemies, Tito's Partisans, put them to death. Six thousand civilians narrowly escaped the same fate, after intervention by British Red Cross and Quaker aid workers.

Based on moving interviews with survivors, the story follows the massacre of the soldiers, the survivors' tough years in refugee camps and triumph in making new lives in Argentina, the USA, Canada and Britain. The book recounts how deeply issues of wartime collaboration and the Communist domination of the Partisan movement divide Slovenes today.

Selected as "Book of the Year" 2005 in the Times Literary Supplement by John Bayley, literary critic, retired Oxford University Professor and widower of Iris Murdoch. The authors wrote to Prime Minister Tony Blair asking for Britain to make a gesture of regret to Slovenia for sending back the surrendered soldiers.

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