The ceremony marking the 25th Annivesary of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence, held…
Over the past 28 years the Croatian Air Force has had made significant progress acquiring capabilities and capacities of a modern service.
The Barracks “Pukovnik Mirko Vukušić“at Zemunik on 12 December 2019 hosted a ceremony marking the 28th anniversary of the establishment of the Croatian Air Force, , praise and awards. Alongside the families of the fallen Croatian pilots Rudolf Perešin, Marko Živković and Mirko Vukušić, the Envoy of the President of the Republic as Supreme Commander of the Croatian Armed Forces Zrinko Petener, by the Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Damir Krstičević as Envoy of the Prime Minister, by the Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Krasimir Karakačanov, by Chief of the General Staff of the Croatian Armed Forces, General Mirko Šundov, by the Prefect of the Zadar County Božidar Longin, by the Mayor of Zadar Branko Dukić and other distinguished visitors.
Zrinko Petener said that over the past 28 years the Croatian Air Force had made significant progress acquiring capabiliies and capacities of a modern service.
“In the early days the members of the Croatian Air Force were motivated by patriotism and courage. Many of them sacrified their lives for the freedom of Croatia, and made it possible for us to talk about the future of the Croatian Air Force, our Croatian Army ”.
Minister Krstičević announced a new date for the Croatian Air Force Day – 25 October – marking the historic overflight of the legendary pilot Rudolf Perešin to Croatia, which was the turning point in the development of the Croatian Air Force.
“Rudy’s historic feat and a strong message led us to propose the date – 25 October – as the new Croatian Air Force Day, to remind the future generations of Croatian pilots of the heroism of Rudolf Perešin and all others who created it.
Our intent is to associate the Croatian Air Force Day with the true values of the Homeland War – with Rufolf Perešin’s Overflight to Croatia! We also need to associate the values of pilots of the Homeland War with the values of the modern-day military pilots – the determination, attitude, courage, defiance and patriotism”, stressed the Minister.
The Minister praised the return of Rudolf Perešin’s MiG (seen by 150,000 citizens in a few months time) during the office of the present Government.
The Minister expressed appreciation to the pilots and air technicians for their contribution to the security system and stressed the admirable progress achieved by the Croatian Air Force in terms of capabilities and capacities over the past 28 years.
“The present Government procured the Kiowa Warrior helicopters, which have reached full operational capability, the Mi-171Sh helicopters have been overhauled, and the powerful Black Hawk helicopters will be delivered soon“.
“The Croatian Government decided to accept the donation of two Black Hawk helicopters and procure two more helicopters, including the training and logistic support”the Minister stressed and announced the continuation of the construction of a stronger Croatian Air Force. “In addition to the procurement of the helicopters, the Ministry is expecting the receipt of bids for multi-purpose fighter aircraft. The National Security Council pledged strong support to the procurement of the aircraft, for the purpose of strengthening the combat component of the Croatian Air Force and provide security of Croatia and of its skies“, said Minister Krstičević.
General Šundov said that the establishment of the Croatian Air Force was full of challenges. “We organised our air force from scratch , mounting weapons systems onto sports, agricultural and training aircraft. We had to improvise, and our heroic feats and the bold overflights of our heroic pilots from the JNA air bases raised the morale of the Croatian defenders and their hope in the final victory “said the Chief of General Staff, who also recalled the critical support by the first fighter aircraft in the operations deblocking Dubrovnik unblock and announced further investing into the development of the Croatian Air Force and its capabilities.
The Commander of the Croatian Air Force Brigadier General Michael Križanec extended recognition to military pilots and air technicians for their contribution to the benefit of the Croatian Air Force. “We have an obligation to serve our people and our homeland, to act proudly yet humble, and think what Croatian Air Force our heroic pilots immagined. We are witnessing day by day to the sacrifice, hard work and admirable feats by our pilots, air technicians and other air personnel”said the Commander of the Air Force.
The Exhibition in honour to Rudolf Perešin
The Croatian Air Force Training Centre “Rudolf Perešin” in the Barracks at Zemunik is hosting an exhibition in honour of the legendary hero of the Homeland War Rudolf Perešin “The Return of the Victor – Rudolf Perešin”. Speaking of the Exhibition concept, the Commander of the “Rudolf Perešin” Centre Colonel Goran Huljev said the Exhibition displayed the course of the return of Rudolf Perešin’s MiG-21 aircraft to Croatia to the public interest in the aircraft,which was placed in front of the Ministry of Defence in Zagreb. “You will never be forgotten“, said Ljerka Perešin in her message to the fallen Croatian defenders opening the Exhibition dedicated to her fallen husband, who had a virtue that will never be forgotten.
“Heroism can fade in memory, it is well known. But if a person possesses humbleness as my late husband Rudi did, his figure and feats will never be forgotten. I wish to express my appreciation to all who made effort to return his aircraft to Croatia. We showed to be strong“said the wife of Staff. Brig. Perešin , who also extended congratulations to the members of the Croatian Air Force. A new official website of the Croatian Air Force vojnipilot.hr was presented, with the information on careers in the Croatian Air Force. The new website was launched by cadet military pilot Goran Crnički, who called on young people to join the Croatian Air Force and to take up the challenge and become military pilots.