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  issue 2, year XIV, 2007


Stepan Mesic, President of the Republic of Croatia Croatia and the European Union,
Croatia and Bulgaria - 15 years since the international recognition of Croatia
page 4

H.E. Drazen Vukov Colic, Ambassador of the Republic of Croatia to the Republic of Bulgaria
BOTH YOU AND WE WANT TO BE A SOURCE OF STABILITY, LOCOMOTIVES OF PROGRESS AND A STANDARD OF DEMOCRACY
Interview by Valentin Kostov
page 6


Croatians and Bulgarians have shared from time immemorial the same dreams and feelings, have faced the same challenges, and now again are sharing one and the same ideal for the future.
It is a great creative challenge for Croatian experts and diplomats, politicians and negotiators to get acquainted with Bulgarian experience and examine Bulgarias Euro-Atlantic achievements.
Croatia takes pride in the fact that she had been able to help Bulgaria preserve at the time its cultural and state identity. Many of these connections, however, have died out during the existence of the two former Yugoslav states, when Sofia-Belgrade relations came to the fore. That is why we have to rediscover anew what we have already had.
Today, both countries are taking an important historic examination, when one and the same questions should be given the same answer. This means that there is no difference between us any more, that could be stronger than the kinship, nor similarity that could neutralize any difference.

HAD THERE BEEN JUSTICE IN GEOPOLITICS, CROATIA SHOULD HAVE LONG AGO BECOME AN EC MEMBER
Velizar Enchev, Ambassador of the Republic of Bulgaria to the Republic of Croatia (1997-2002)
page 10

When the dissolution of Yugoslavia started in 1990, no Bulgarian diplomat or correspondent in Belgrade had any doubt in the just cause of the Croatians. We were all confident that a people with such a historic tradition had the full right to have an independent state and determine its destiny by itself. Fifteen years since those crucial historic events, that have led to the revival of the Croatian state, Bulgarians see in the Republic of Croatia a genuine ally and friend, whom we are expecting in the joint European family. Had there been justice and morality in geopolitics, Croatia should have joined EC together with Bulgaria and Romania. Croatias economy, agriculture, tourism and commerce are long since at European level and are a model to follow.

THE CROATIAN CONSTRUCTION MIRACLE
by DVC Press
page 11

There are over 1300 kilometres of modern European motorways in Croatia, and four-fifths of them have been built in the last ten years. It takes 8 hours drive from Vienna to Split, 10 hours - from Munich to the Adriatic Sea, one hour - from Slovenia to Istra, 4 hours - from Zagreb to Belgrade, 7 hours - from Budapest to Pula. In this way Croatians age-old dream to have a connection with their own sea, as well as with all their neighbours, through the most modern motorways, designed and built mainly by local specialists, came true.

TOURISM THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA, AS IT HAS ONCE BEEN
by DVC Press
page 13

The Croatian coastline along the Adriatic Sea stretches for nearly 1800 kilometres, and in front of it spreads a necklace of 1775 islands, islets and sea reefs, that are a real paradise for the lovers of yacht tourism. Croatia intends to develop individual and selective tourism, to provide, most of all, ecologically clean environment, natural local food and traditions. Within the merciless competition with the big tourist powers, which possess an unlimited hotel basis and offer cheap packages, Croatia chooses quality.

THE MAGIC TEASPOON OF KOPRIVNICA
by DVC Press
page 16

Vegeta has become one of the most famous Croatian brandnames, developing from a small paper-bag of spices and vegetables to a great business. Everybody knows that adding Vegeta makes meals tastier, but only a few know Vegetas Mother - Professor Zlata Bartl.

BULGARIAN-CROATIAN RELATIONS THROUGH THE AGES
Roumyana Bozhilova
page 17

Established more than 12 centuries ago, the relations between Bulgarians and Croatians are remarkable for their almost unchanging benevolence and progressively increasing aspiration for mutual acquaintance and rapprochement. They have been formed under the influence of several factors, namely: the degree of preserved system of state in the two countries; the existence, or lack, of contradictory national-territorial problems between them; the common Cyril-and-Methodius Glagolitic tradition, which created a foundation for literary and cultural contacts; the formation of a part of the Bulgarian intelligentsia, which received its training in Croatia; and the degree of intimacy in the national-political interests of both Croatians and Bulgarians.

THE PHILOSOPHICAL SECRETS OF THE GLAGOLITIC SCRIPT
Academician Josip Bratulic
page 20

The Glagolitic alphabet is a script, whose creator is well known. He is a holy man. This writing has a deep theological meaning: all men are equal in rights and value, everyone turns towards Christianity as an individual, widely opening his mouth and pronouncing (az = I in English) : I believe and I accept, as Chernorisetz Hrabur had once said.
Each letter has its discernible name, and all names are linked in a message. This sacred alphabet, filled with deep meaning, was given to the Slavs by a holy man, who, according to the Passional, and to Chernorisetz Hrabur himself, has been God-stricken.
This means that not Cyril has compiled the alphabet, but God himself has sent it to the Slavs through him! The legend stems from the historic mission of the holy brothers. The disciples and followers of Cyril and Methodius firmly believe in the sacredness of the Glagolitic script.

BISHOP STROSSMAYER
Triffon Pavlov
page 24

Bishop Josip Strossmayer stands in the first ranks of foreigners who are friends of Bulgaria. His remarkable deeds have left deep traces in our history, while he himself remains a great symbol in the centuries-old ties between our two brotherly peoples - the Croatian and the Bulgarian. In the remote 1861 Bulgarian Folk Songs by brothers Constantin and Dimiter Miladinov came out in Zagreb. That work about the song treasure of our people appeared owing to the moral and material support of the bishop. Strossmayers merit to us is not confined solely to the publishing of Bulgarian Folk Songs and the training of young Bulgarians, some of whom became active participants in the national liberation struggles, while others showed themselves as builders of new Bulgaria. Another deed of the great Croatian were the two chapels built in Italy, in the towns of Rome and Loreto, that bear the names of Slavs first enlighteners Cyril and Methodius.

NIKOLA TESLA: THE MAN WHO INVENTED THE 20TH CENTURY
by DVC Press
page 26

The Genius of Light Nikola Tesla, who has presented the world with electric energy, and who has merit for the invention of the computer, predicted as far back as the beginning of the 20th c. that newspapers would be printed in a wireless way in every home (the Internet), while in their mutual communication people would be using pocket devices (the cellular phones). Already in 1925 Tesla argued that - we would be able to watch sport events, wars and natural calamities from whatever spot, thus being the first to foretell global television. His contemporaries considered him a crank, while today a real alternative cult is made of him, glorifying him as a prophet from another planet.

A MONUMENT TO THE FIRST CHRISTIANS
by DVC Press
page 28

The Euphrasian Basilica in Porec is an exclusive sample of early Christian construction art. Owing to its architectural beauty and preservation, experts compare it with the basilica in Ravena, that had come into being almost at the same time. The Euphrasian Basilica is one of the six monuments in Croatia, inscribed in the UNESCO List of World Cultural and Natural Heritage Sites.

THE BLUE COLOUR OF ZAGREB
by DVC Press
page 30

The Gallery in the Conference room of Zagrebs City-Hall is painted with a frieze of 20 territorial crests. These are the coat-of-arms of towns, market-places, communities and estates, whose holders have been active participants in the public and economic past of the Zagreb region.

ZAGREB: EUROPEAN ATMOSPHERE TO THE LAST DETAIL
Evelina Gecheva
page 33

Zagreb, the capital of the Republic of Croatia, impresses the visitor at first sight. Its belonging to Europe can be seen at every step. The moment you land at the airport, you are awed by the cleanness and order, that most Balkan capitals could hardly boast of. The residential buildings and the spaces between them are arranged with love and a flair for the beautiful. The city has been built following preliminary architectural plans, combining and uniting two medieval settlements - Kaptol and Gradec. Parks girdle the city in a horse-shoe form. Zagrebs indisputable landmark is the Cathedral Assumption of Virgin Mary. It can be seen from every corner of the capital. In 2004 million-strong Zagreb turned 910 years.

DUBROVNIK KINGDOM OF BEAUTY AND SYMBOL OF LIBERTY
by DVC Press
page 38

Already in the 13th c. the citizens of Dubrovnik got from tsar Ivan Assen 2nd the privilege to trade freely, while during the Turkish domination they managed, as skilful diplomats, to obtain from Tsarigrad (Konstantinopol) a special statute for free movement and activity, thus often being the only commercial, as well as spiritual link with Europe. Hence, the outset of the special age-old ties between Dubrovnik inhabitants and Bulgarians.

IVAN LUBICIC: FROM REFUGEE TO DAVIS CUP HOLDER
by DVC Press
page 41

At 13 Ivan Lubicic ran from the war in Bosnia, while at 25 he won the Davis Cup for Croatia at a tournament, which was considered an unofficial world tennis championship. For these 13 years Ivan Lubicic has walked the long and painful path from a lost boy to a great winner, without turning into a typical sport star.

A CROATIAN NECK-TIE WITH A BULGARIAN MARTENITZA
by DVC Press
page 42

The neck-tie is a mass product, a work of art and a public message. At the exhibitions in Sofia and Russe Bulgarian creators contributed their national mite to the world fashionable accessory, which was mentioned already in 1656 with a Croatian name, having the same look it has today.

THE ZVONCHARS - HARBINGERS OF SPRING
by DVC Press
page 44

According to ancient customs, picturesque zvonchars tour villages at Shrovetide, on the first Sunday before Lent, in order to chase away the evil spirits with their ringing and to invoke Spring. This tradition in Croatia, typical for the town of Rijeka in particular, is still carried on today, being an occasion for people to get together, have fun and draw closer.

PLACIDO DOMINGO IN A NATIONAL COSTUME OF A CROATIAN GOSPAR
by DVC Press
page 46

Although national costumes have long ago disappeared from our everyday clothing, Croatian folklore elements have creatively been assimilated in modern fashion aesthetics. Thus, the Dalmatian male national costume can match itself by elegance even with the tail-coat and todays Croatian men put it only on most solemn occasions.

THE GOLD OF THE MOTOVUN FOREST
by DVC Press
page 48

The truffle mushroom, the aromatic precious delicacy on the table of every real gourmet, needs a special kind of soil, forest and stream, as well as an experienced trace-following couple - a man and a dog. Oaks, beeches, poplars and elm-trees grow in the Motovun forest, with which the subterranean mushroom of the Tuber species lives in symbiosis, the small river Mirna running through the forest. In this way, in the very heart of Istria, all favourable conditions are happily combined, turning the picturesque peninsula in Northern Croatia into one of the most famous fields of this queer tuber without a ground part, that has specific taste and aphrodisiac qualities.

CARETAKER OF THE HEIGHTS AND GUARDIAN OF THE SEA
by DVC Press
page 50

The white-headed vulture is the jumbo-jet of the birds squadron. It has a majestic 3-metre spread of the wings, and darts off headlong with a speed of 120 km. To all lovers of this rare bird the island of Cres is one of the most interesting sites for its observation.

FAMOUS CROATS
page 53

PHOTOATELier presents:
DONCHO DONEV
page 57

Litart presents:
MIRO GAVRAN: THEATRE IS LIFES HEART
Interview by Ludmila Mindova
page 61

SLAVKO MIHALICH
page 62

LITERARY TIES BETWEEN CROATIANS AND BULGARIANS
Gancho Savov
page 64

In their cultural annals, Croatians and Bulgarians have had many contacts, especially after the 17th century. It is then that the first scientific researches about Bulgarians came to the fore, carried out by Croatian men of letters. Mavro Orbini wrote in 1601 his famous book Regno degli Slavi (The Realm of the Slavs), which gave a lot of information about the Bulgarians, as well. From its Russian translation Paisii Hilendarski drew data for his Istoria Slavianobalgarska (The History of Slavs and Bulgarians).
The Croatian Danica Illirska was actually the first magazine of the Southern Slavs to publish in the 1830s information about Bulgarians destiny, while some of the most renowned Croatian scholars wrote about Bulgarian literature.
The distinguished Slavist Vatroslav Jagic is of epochal significance, as his researches and conclusions constituted a basic reference point for all further studies on Bulgarians. Equally important is the name of archbishop Josip Juraj Strossmayer, the founder of the Croatian Academy of Sciences.

ATELIER PRESENT:

MATEY MATEEV: THE UNIQUE, THE GENUINE, THE BELIEVER
page 66

NIKOLAI SPASSOV
page 68
Translated by Galia B. Cholakova
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