IMMEDIATELY after the liberation of Belgrade, on October 20, 1944, spiritual and political biography, but also some non-literary reasons, recommended Ivo Andrić as the most suitable person for numerous social functions, including the president of the Writers’ Union of Yugoslavia, the first such organization of South Slavic writers in history.
With his political engagement and cooperation with the new authorities, civil Belgrade and all those who could not come to terms with the reality, in closed circles, discreetly spread the story that he sympathized with Draža Mihailović during the occupation. Some of his contemporaries record this in secret manuscripts that will come to light many decades later. This Belgrade whisper about flirting with Ravna Gora, in the years that followed, will be supported by emigrant journalism and memoirs published by prominent members of the Chetnik movement.
Branko Lazarevic, a diplomat and one of the most influential pre-war literary critics, after his arrest and imprisonment, condemned himself to self-persecution in Herceg Novi. Back in 1946, on the pages of his secret diary (published only in 2007), he wrote about a younger colleague: “In the beginning, he was somewhat interested in the Ravnogorski movement, and it is even claimed that he wrote some encouraging letters to some Chetnik leaders from Herzegovina … “.
KOSTA St. Pavlović, a diplomatic official and head of the cabinet of pre-war and emigrant royal governments, announced in the book “Poetry and Prose” (Geneva 1977) that “His withdrawal (Andrić’s, during the occupation) was, according to some mutual friends, only apparent, because he was quite involved in the resistance movement, on the side of General Dragoljub Mihailovic, to whom he even expressed support in a written message. ” The leader of the Chetnik movement was allegedly delighted when he received a message from a writer from Belgrade.
The same author writes the following lines in the book “War Diary 1941-1945”: “on Thursday, December 23, 1943: I received the first news from Mladen Žujović. … He came to Belgrade secretly. There he saw Andrić, who was in Dražino He says that the spirit of the people is great, and that it was much easier for them in the forest than in Cairo. ” By the way, Mladen Žujović was a member of the Central National Committee, from abroad and a man of Draža’s greatest trust.
STEVAN K. Pavlović, a well-known Serbian-British professor whose specialty is history and international relations, otherwise Kostin’s son and editor of his books, in his biographical essay “Three Generations of an Official Family in Serbia and Yugoslavia: Pavlović, Kosta, Stevan and Kosta”, states that in Pavlović’s house in Gospodar Jevremova Street No. 9, which is today an integral part of the Belgrade Cultural Center, in the attic, where the studio of his aunt Bela Pavlović, our famous painter, was located, sympathizers and members of General Mihailović’s movement gathered during the war. was also Ivo Andrić.
Dimitrije Djordjevic, a professor of history at the University of California, and a member of SANU since 1970, also writes about Andrić’s Ravna Gora pedigree. In his memoir “Scars and Warnings”, he says: “Brana Stranjaković was present when Ivo Andrić visited his uncle, Professor Dragoslav Stranjaković, a member of Draža’s Central Committee, in 1942.”
In a text published in 1991 in NIN, Siniša Paunović writes that Aleksandar Belić, president of the Serbian Academy of Sciences, in 1942 drew Ivo Andrić’s attention to the fact that generals, including his brothers Vladimir and Emil, said that Mihailović was “hollow-headed” and “drunkard.” Ivo allegedly replied that Draža was “the new Karađorđe”.
IRONY OF FATE, as it often happens in our country, and no matter how paradoxical it may sound, the only tangible document about Andrić’s connections with the people of Ravna Gora is in his party file in the File of the Central Committee of the League of Communists. It was discovered by Ratko Peković and Slobodan Kljakić, and published in a slightly silent book “Engaged Andrić 1944-1954”. It is a kind of characteristic, which was signed by his friends, writers Marko Ristic and Aleksandar Vuco, three months after Andric was admitted to the ranks of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia on December 13, 1954. The document, little known to the public, states the following:
“An Antinedić man from the first day, Andrić received the first news about the uprising in Serbia with approval and admiration, and refuted the claim of Nedić people, capitulators, and cowards that the uprising was ‘premature’. A sincere patriot, a man who during the First World War spent three years in Austrian prisons, Andrić believed that the so-called nationalist forces were at the head of the armed uprising, but not remaining blind to the facts, he gradually realized that these forces, with Draža Mihailović, were treacherous, and honestly revised certain After a sincere moral and political crisis, Andrić found himself ready to rebuild and loyally help the progress of his homeland at the time of his liberation. it was not the fruit of a sudden, opportunistic turn, but of a slow, fair ‘test of conscience.’ “
“That means – Pekovic and Kljakic conclude – Andric’s contacts with the Chetniks were not unknown to some respectable and influential representatives of the new government after 1944, and probably not to its repressive bodies, embodied in Knoj and Ozna.”
TESTIMONY on this topic was also left by Kosta Timotijević in the record “Why did the left bourgeois intelligentsia commit class treason?” in which it is written: “Many were waiting for release with trepidation in their hearts … Marko Ristić and Aca Vučo treated Ivo Andrić, saving him from going to Ravna gora. He allegedly also had a uniform sewn on.”
Marko Ristic, a writer and the first ambassador of Tito’s Yugoslavia in Paris, although he was Andric’s protector, could not resist gossiping in front of Miroslav Krleza that Andric was in a ceremonial suit every September 6, on the birthday of King Peter II, during the war. went to church to worship for the happy and long life of the king. “
The authors of the book “Engaged Andrić” note that Andrić’s attitude towards Ravna Gora was probably influenced by the fact that among the ideologues of this movement and its political leadership were sympathizers and members of the Young Bosnian circle and other national liberation organizations from the period before Yugoslav unification. in the political wing of the Ravna Gora movement and in the London government, in which Mihailović had a foothold, were some of the most prominent representatives of domestic Freemasonry. “
REFUSED TO GO TO THE VILLAGE OF BA
STEVAN K. Pavlović in his biographical essay on the Pavlović family notes that at the beginning of 1944, a group from Jevremova 9, from the Ravnogorski committee, went to Draža’s headquarters. It is logical to assume that this departure was in connection with the Congress held on St. Sava’s Day (January 27) in the village of Ba, which was supposed to be a response to the session of AVNOJ held two months earlier. They also invited Andrić, but he refused to join them. After the war, Andrić did not come to the Pavlović family anymore, he did not reveal their connections with Mihailović’s staff, nor did anyone from that “circle” reveal Andrić’s connections with Ravna Gora.
TOMORROW: TROUBLE ABOUT THE ALBANIAN ISSUE
Follow us through iOS and android apps