By: Jože Biščak
Slovenianess has survived for many centuries, and faced many hardships. Love for the homeland, nation culture, faith and family have kept it alive in a sometimes very hostile environment. We have even survived communism, the worst and the evillest totalitarianism of all times, because we had faith and because we learned from our ancestors what it means to be Slovenian. That is because we have patriotism in our genes and we have always known that we are special: good, hardworking and peaceful, and that therefore, no threat would sway us. When the time came and we were faced with a serious threat of being thrown in the cauldron of the Balkans, and forever erased from the European memory, we took our swords and rebelled against the Yugoslav enemy and won. That was how we gained our country 30 years ago on this beautiful piece of Earth, where our grandsires settled and grew roots a long time ago. That is why we must remember 1991.
We formed our country and freedom and democracy were the principles that we followed. With each step we took, the little things reminded us on this one great thing. We were proud to be Slovenian and the love for our land was felt in the air. We were grateful for this historical moment. It seemed that from now on, our children would grow up in a kind and safe environment where they would be taught patriotism and national pride in schools. Unfortunately, there was no lustration at that time. Unfortunately, we thought that a wolf could change his nature; we believed that the idea of an independent Slovenia was so strong that it would destroy every hostility against our homeland. There were those who predicted it, since Slovenia was never their first option, and because they would not even recognize the Slovenian nation. And while steady hands, loyal to their kin, worked and were motivated with helping the young country, while implanting a sense of national confidence and identity to their kinsman abroad, the evildoers, mostly the admirers of the bloody communist regime, were skimming and destroying.
That is why today, 30 years after we fought the aggressor and proclaimed our country, we witness with worries that the youth is not certain anymore if Slovenia is a good thing, nor that a love for one´s country is necessary for the preservice of a nation. The young believe that the feeling of national pride and of belonging to Slovenianess is reactionary. While the media and the popular culture were strengthening the national idea in those years, with the idea that we were special and celebrated the Slovenian people, patriotism is no longer their style today. It seems that they are following the trend of hatred towards Slovenianess.
Despite the stormy clouds gathering and threatening to destroy everything that we Slovenians hold dear, and taking from us the strength that was needed 30 years ago which made possible for us to proclaim our sovereign country, we must not let them take away from us the sacred moment when we remember hundreds of known and unknown heroes who took up arms and won our independence. We must be grateful to those families, whose husbands and fathers sacrificed their lives, so that we can have our own country today.
Such days are celebrated in every country. It is a time of remembrance of the sacred time when people took to the streets together to defend their homeland. Everyone should know that we are willing to do it again. If necessary, we will accept any burden in opposing those who wish us ill. No price is too high to pay when our existence is at stake. We will stand against anyone that will jeopardize our sovereignty, independence and the survival of our Slovenian culture, tradition, and everything in which we have believed for centuries. No one will shove his new values down our throats, values that lead only to decline and destruction. As Simon Gregorič, a Catholic priest, poet, and a great patriot said: “Our kin here will rule, our tongue, our law. Under our roof foreigner our guest may be, but never our lord”.
God bless Slovenia. God Bless the Slovenian nation.
Jože Biščak is the editor-in-chief of the weekly Demokracija, a long-term investigative journalist, and since 2020 also the president of the Slovenian Association of Patriotic Journalists and the author of three books.