The Narrative of the Homeland War in Croatia
Croats feel that they were victims of greater Serbian aggression during the 1991–1995 conflict and that only their heroic self-defence prevented the destruction of the Croatian state and nation. The narrative of the Homeland War is constructed on these notions and forms a central component of the nation- and state-building projects in Croatia. This chapter analyses the key characteristics of the narrative by drawing on legal documents, previous scholarship and focus group data. The war narrative is omnipresent in Croatian society and affects public perceptions of law, history, minority rights and civil society. Many individuals feel the war is not over and has continued on the negotiating table, thereby keeping the war central to their lives, a sentiment that is reproduced by political elites. The transitional justice process took place within this context, and it is this narrative that judicial narratives interact with.
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