From the very beginning the military was given a privileged position in the new state both in military and in political terms. However, the institution faced in the first place immense legitimacy problems. Paradoxically the military’s (Serbian) core consisted of the officer corps with a distinguished war record. Yet the predominantly Serb army and its transformation into a Yugoslav institution met significant obstructions both with Serbs and non-Serbs. Serbs were proud of their army which had completed the historical mission and expected it to guard these achievements in peacetime. The fragile Yugoslav construction had to be protected from both external and internal enemies. 35 The latter were not difficult to identify since from the very beginning Yugoslavia was faced with harsh opposition and even violent upheavals. thirty six The Serbian army had acquired a rich experience in domestic intervention in the pre-war period, but now the situation seemed very simple since the ‘enemies’ could have been identified through national and alleged political criteria.
The main of one’s Standard Personnel, the latest well-known Vojvoda Misic yourself inspected the trouble into the Croatia and you can provided a depressing report inside the Belgrade. In his look at the problem with Croats try hopeless in which he ideal a simple solution – to depart Croats so you can secede and also to mark the ‘just’ limitations between them claims with each other cultural and you can ‘historical’ standards. Without a doubt he previously in your mind the project of an increased Serbia instead of High Yugoslavia which could have been likely to give the Serbs army quality. Whether or not King Aleksandar rejected the brand new offer this new conduct of army from the ‘new territories’ obtained they a detrimental term. The latest tortures and you may harsh reprisals of your civil inhabitants worse new whole enterprise of your the newest condition-strengthening and you may destroyed new institutional authenticity of the ‘new’ military definitively:
To start with, the fresh new officials out of Slovene, Croat and you may Montenegrin source had to get entry for the army, while it wasn’t necessary on Serb officials
This was a blatant misappropriation of authority, quite contrary to the realities that led to the unification, and endangered great discomfiture, especially since the army applied brutal, coercive, and, as one historian dubbed them, Milos-style punishments, frequently even without the formality of a military court-ous of these was the practice of meeting out corporal punishment by blows with clubs or truncheons. 37
One of the most critical problems of the new state was institution building. While the other political institutions had to be created from scratch, the military was only to be transferred from the Serbian state. The units of the former Austria-Hungarian army were disbanded. The non-Serbs saw the military as a continuation of the Serbian army with the command language, insignia and all other details directly transferred from the Serbian Kingdom. The regime declared that it supported an open-door policy regarding the officers from the former Habsburg army. In reality, however, there were many problems to surmount, the question of loyalty having been in the background in the majority of cases. Furthermore, the position of the non-Serb officers was humiliating. They faced huge obstacles in terms of promotion, subordination, the question of rank etc. The figures show that they were also underrepresented, which does not necessarily imply that it was a result of a planned action. For instance, in 1938 only 10 per cent of the Yugoslav officers and only 31 per cent of 191 generals were Croats. 38
The fresh Croat and you may mumbaian women seeking marriage Slovene officers felt superior within the academic and you can top-notch terms, if you’re uneducated Serbian officers got marvelous conflict details
There is a giant pit amongst the officials raised in additional army cultural environment, with another military ethos, ethnic provider and you will, first of all, battle feel. The fresh new Serbian army choose to go through a genuine Golgotha for the conflict where every 2nd male did not survive. One postings in armed forces ladder had become occupied by battle heroes who had been to not call it quits expensive achieved positions. Serbian officers thought the newest inclusion of your officials from the (former) adversary armed forces possibly because an enthusiastic insult on the courageous opposition otherwise as the an indication of generosity and you can forgiveness into the enemy’s conflict sins. The newest peasant-eg soldiers and officials got an inferiority state-of-the-art regarding your ‘noble’ and you can better-knowledgeable Austria-Hungarian officials. A few of them were poorly damage, enjoying the conflict units’ flags becoming changed by the Yugoslav three-colored flag. Petar Jovic, good combatant in the Salonica Front side and you can chairman of the Relationship of your own 1912-1918 Volunteers told you: