After several Opposition lawmakers on Friday requested that Prime Minister-designate Tihomir Oreskovic withdraw the nomination of Zlatko Hasanbegovic for Culture Minister, Hasanbegovic said that this campaign against him had elements of an "ideological lynch" and was not supported by facts.
"I am saddened to see that all these developments have elements of an ideological lynching without being supported by any facts but are based on a selective use of different statements I have made in the last 10 years within my historiographical and scholarly research or within public debates on specific topics," Hasanbegovic told the press in the national parliament after the PM-designate presented his cabinet's agenda.
Hasanbegovic called on critics such as SDP PM Nenad Stazic to read all his interviews and papers to be acquainted with his position as a historian.
Now I am here in a completely different capacity, and the only relevant thing is the government's programme and the programme for my ministerial department, which will be implemented in the coming period, said Hasanbegovic, whom the Opposition accuses of pro-Ustasha views.
As for accusations that he said that anti-Fascism was a platitude and not an element of the Croatian Constitution, Hasanbegovic said that this was not about anti-fascism but about the attitude towards the "Yugoslav totalitarian Communist legacy".
All who abuse the notion of anti-Fascism, which can be fluid, as is well-known to historians, know that various meanings can be attributed to that notion. Stalin, Tito, Pol Pot and also U.S. General Patton were anti-fascists. Everyone knows that those were different persons. We are not talking about abstract anti-Fascism but about the particular Yugoslav Communist totalitarian legacy, Hasanbegovic said, adding that the present-day Croatian state was established contrary to the Yugoslav state and Yugoslav Communism, and that it was contrary to "the Yugoslav Communist totalitarian legacy".
He elaborated that the developments in 1945 were "the negation of the right of the Croatian people to their state independence".
"This is my position on Titoism which I have publicly presented," Hasanbegovic said, declining to give his opinion to reporters about Ustasha leader Ante Pavelic.