This book covers the full story of the Ustasha, a fascist movement in Croatia, from its historic roots to its downfall. The authors address key questions: In what international context did Ustasha terrorism grow and develop? How did this movement rise to power, and then exterminate hundreds of thousands of innocents? Who was Ante Pavelić, its leader? Was he a shrewd politician, able to exploit for his independent project Mussolini’s imperial ambitions, Hitler’s pan-German aims, and the anti-Bolshevism of the Holy See and the Western bloc? Or was he, consciously or not, a pawn in other hands, in a complex international scenario where Croatia was only arena among many? And after the movement’s collapse, how were several of the most prominent Ustasha leaders able to evade capture by Tito’s victorious army? The facts and documents confront us with the ambivalence of terrorism.
The book places the appearance of the Ustasha movement not only in the context of the interwar Kingdom of Yugoslavia but also in the wider perspective of the emergence of European fascism.