Happy Croatian Independence Day

Eyes of the Mind

On this day, October 8, twenty-two years ago, Croatia severed its last remaining ties with Yugoslavia.  This was not the act of a separatist ethnic group desirous of autonomy embroiled in a civil war.  It was the deliberate but reluctant act of a sovereign nation that, having exercised its democratic right to secede from a tyrannical Communist federation, found itself under sustained attack by the sixth largest army in the entire world.  It was the act of a nation that exercised diplomacy in the worst of circumstances, agreeing to and waiting out a three-month moratorium on its declaration of independence despite the most grievous provocations.  By the time the moratorium ended on October 8, Vukovar was in the middle of a siege the likes of which had not been seen since Stalingrad.  Only four days earlier the Yugoslav Air Force (the second largest in Europe) had bombed the clearly-marked hospital…

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