Petrova Gora Monument (HR) – Communist monument built in memory of the Croatian partisan victims of World War II

This huge memorial building at the mountain Petrova Gora is dedicated to the uprising of the people of Kordun and Banija, to remember those who fought bravely against the spread of fascism during 1941 and 1942. The site has fallen into severe disrepair however, with many of the polished metal panels falling away from the building to expose a skeletal frame.

During WWII, the fascist government of Croatia openly collaborated with the Nazi German regime, and began a racially motivated pogrom against ethnic Serbs. It is believed that Croatian fascists murdered around 500,000 ethnic Serbs in a purpose-built concentration camp. However, ethnic Serbs came into contact with Communist partisan units and joined the anti-fascist effort. This eventually led to a battle between Serbian partisans armed only with pitch-forks, attacking heavily armed fascist Croation troops that had infiltrated the Petrova Gora area.

Built in 1981 by Vojin Bakić, the Petrova Gora monument stands 12 stories tall, on top of the Petra Gora mountain. The Yugoslav government had this monument constructed to remember the bravery of the anti-fascist partisans – but with the collapse of the USSR in 1991 – Yugoslavia also disintegrated due to Western pressure. Far-right attitudes resurfaced in Croatia, and communist era monuments have either been destroyed or left to fall apart through neglect.

During the Yugoslav War in the 90’s the monument at Petrova Gora fell into disrepair and was targeted and attacked by vandals. Over the subsequent decades it became completely defaced, looted and demolished, with all its historical artifacts and relics contained within its museum and archives being taken or destroyed.

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