Ivan Gošnjak

Ivan Gošnjak

Infobox Military Person
name=Ivan Gošnjak
lived=June 10 1909 - Death date and age|1980|2|8|1909|6|10|

caption=Ivan Gošnjak as General of the Army of the FPRY in 1954.
placeofbirth=Ogulin, Croatia, Austro-Hungarian Empire
placeofdeath=Belgrade, SFR Yugoslavia
allegiance=Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
branch=SFR Yugoslavia
rank=General of the Army
commands=People's Liberation Army and Partisan Units of Croatia, Commander
battles=Spanish civil war
World War II
awards=Order of National Hero of Yugoslavia
laterwork= Member of the Council of Federation

Ivan Gošnjak (Cyrillic: Иван Гошњак) (1909-1980) was the Minister of Defence of Yugoslavia from 1953 to 1967.

Ivan Gošnjak was a carpenter by profession and joined the Communist Party of Yugoslavia in 1933. In 1935 Gošnjak was sent to Moscow and was enrolled for one year at the Lenin School where he also attended lectures by "comrade Walter", better known by his World War II-era codename Tito. In 1936 Gošnjak was sent to a military barracks in Ryazan where he was given the designation "Number 36", instead of his real name and was given military instruction before being sent as a "volunteer" to the Spanish Civil War in January 1937. A great admirer of Stalin, Gošnjak was appointed captain in the International Brigades. After the defeat of the republican forces in Spain, Gošnjak was detained in France in 1939. After the capitulation of France in 1940 Gošnjak escaped from the camp, going in 1941 to Germany as a worker. In Germany he used a fake passport, and in July 1942 returned to his native Croatia and immediately joined Tito's partisan units.

As a Spanish civil war veteran, Gošnjak was immediately appointed as deputy commander-in-chief, a post which he held until the end of the war.

In 1946 Tito wanted to send him to complete his military studies at the Soviet Voroshilov Miliatry Academy, but Gošnjak asked him for permission to stay in Belgrade and work in the Central Committee. Tito agreed and later appointed him as deputy Defence Minister (1946-1953). At the Fifth Yugoslav CP congress Gošnjak was elected a member of the Politburo and later was made a member of the Executive Commeittee (the new name for the Politburo), elected at the sixth (1952), seventh (1958), and eighth (1964) party congresses.In 1953 Gošnjak became Defence Minister, a post which he held until 1967 when he was replaced by General of the Army Nikola Ljubičić. 1955 he was considered for promotion in rank General of the Yugoslav People's Army, but he was never promoted.

Stalin could never forgive Gošnjak for taking, as a former student of the Lenin School, Tito's side in the confilict between the USSR and SFR Yugoslavia. At the Rajk Trial in Budapest (1949) General Gošnjak was accused "of having been a Gestapo agent from 1941 onward". But General Gošnjak and his comrade, General of the Army Kosta Nađ (who was also accused of having been a Gestapo agent), "where from 1941 to 1945 commanders of strategic units of the People's Liberation Army of Yugoslavia, and toward the end of the war commanded corps that dealt the Germans heavy blows."

General Ivan Gošnjak retired from active military service in 1974 and since then he was a member of the Council of Federation, and advisor body to President Tito. [ sr icon [http://files.osa.ceu.hu/holdings/300/8/3/pdf/84-2-271.pdf Ivan Gošnjak biography] ]

ee also

General of the Yugoslav People's Army


External links

* [http://www.serbianunity.net/culture/library/Lopusina2/kos/kos2.html Book: Marko Lopusina, "UBIJ BLIZNJEG SVOG"]
* [http://www.hsp1861.hr/vijesti10/07102006-2.html Kosovac Franjo Tuđman]
* [http://www.mail-archive.com/sim@antic.org/msg07489.html]

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