Tichomir Mirkovič

* 1928  

  • “To bylo dost drsný. Na Sremský frontě udělali Němci ofenzívu, protože nějaká zpravodajská služba nefungovala… My jsme připravovali ofenzívu, spočítalo se to, ale oni nás překvapili. Tu frontu posunuli směrem k Bělehradu. My jsme se stáhli. Ten drsný zážitek byl, že když jsme ustupovali, najednou nějaký frajer, plukovník nebo podplukovník, vylezl ven a: ,Kuda jděte? Kam?’ Já říkám, za vámi. Kde máte prapor? My jsme neměli ponětí o praporu. Zpátky, a přinést prapor. To byl nejhorší zážitek z války. Když ty moje kamarády hned zkosili, byli mrtví. Já jsem se ocitnul sám na trati. Támhle ležel Němec, támhle mrtví. A teď jsem nevěděl, co a jak a kam. Na to nezapomenu. To bylo dost drsný. Když začali střílet, předpokládal jsem, že se tam bojuje. Že jsou tam asi naši. Tak jsem tam šel lesem. A málem mě zastřelili naši průzkumníci. Protože ti, co byli na levý straně, řekli: ,Ne, on je mrtvej, viděli jsme to na vlastní oči.’ A já najednou jsem se hlásil. A oni mi nevěřili. Tak ruce vzhůru, já jsem od toho Němce vzal lehký kulomet, ten jsem opřel o strom a zvedal jsem ruce. A oni nevěřili očím. Když mě viděli živýho. Protože tamti řekli, že jsme mrtví.”

  • “Já, když tohle bylo rozhodnuto, že pojedu sem [do Československa], šel jsem se rozloučit s babičkou, které bylo už 93 let. Potom jsem se dozvěděl, když pásla krávy, že pásla krávy, našli ji na mezi s vřetenem, jak přede. Usnula. Tak jsem se šel s ní rozloučit, v uniformě jsem byl. ,Tak synku,’ ona byla na 90 stupňů ohnutá, skrčená, ale byla čiperná. To bylo dojemný setkání, když jsem tam přišel, sedlák volal a říkal, hele, tady tě někdo hledá. Tak ona přišla. A ona: ,Kdo ty jseš?’ Protože špatně viděla. Tak jsem jí řekl, kdo jsem. A ona mě tak vzala, pohladila a říkala: ,Synku -‘ jako by poznala podle rukou a ne podle očí, kdo jsem. ,Kam půjdeš teďko? Barák ti shořel, zůstalo jenom ohniště, kameny. Rodiče ti zahynuli. Nevíš, kde jsou ostatní sourozenci. Kam půjdeš?’ Já jsem řekl: ,Babi, do nějakýho Československa.’ Nevěděl jsem o tom vůbec nic. A ona říká: ,Synku, ty půjdeš do Československa? Tak si pamatuj, to se budeš mít dobře. To sú naše největší přátelé. Jako Srbů. Ti mají krále, jmenuje se Masaryk.’ A babička, která neuměla číst ani psát, říká: ,To je kamarád našeho krále Alexandra.’ Ani jeden z nich už v té době dávno nežil. Ani Masaryk, ani král. ,A to je kulturní, vyspělý národ, chytrý národ. Všichni umějí číst a psát, synku!’ Moje babička neuměla, protože v kraji, odkud jsem pocházel, bylo asi 70 procent analfabetů.”

  • "I´ll tell you something funny. I´m two years older than it says on my ID card. How is that possible? There are hundreds of cases like that. It was a common thing in the former Yugoslavia, that´s a well known story. They used to do this to save the children. They made me younger than I really was. The priests used to fake the registers. The Germans along with the Ustashas (A Croatian terrorist anti-Yugoslav separatist movement) would search house by house. It all has been unfortunately revealed soon. My father told to my mother that he must take me with him. Otherwise I wouldn’t survive. And that’s how I got to the partisan’s group. A mass rising developed in Yugoslavia and at the end of the war the Tito´s army had more than 200 thousand people. They put me to the Youth partisan crew where we spent two or three months in the kitchen, peeling potatoes. We used to deliver the mail. And then they started to train us."

  • "I do have some experience with this. I used to be a chairman of the local Union of Antifascist Fighters in Prague 10 Zahradní Město. It included about 200 members. There were also three cabinet members - Lébl, Chamirník and minister Hájek. Because they lived in this part of Prague they were also members of the organization. When they wanted to exclude Mr. Hájek from the Union an order from the higher places came. They discussed it. Then they made a decision to exclude him. He asked if he might say something but they wouldn´t give him any chance to. I said: ´Comrades, we are not at the party session, are we?´ - ´Comrade Mirkovič, if you have a problem with that, the door is over there...´ So I grabbed my coat and left. Sometimes they´re right when they call me ´partisan´. This is the way I deal with people."

  • "I managed to pass the first state exams and then they suspended me. It was because of Tito. Just because I said that they should be embarrassed for what they have said about him. So the party organization ordered that I should be suspended. The chancellor was some Mr. Štoll. When he left the school chancellor Jiří Hájek took his place. I will always remember him as a great person. He was the reason I could finish the school. Because they suspended me conditionally only I was given a chance to come back and finish the studies at the end. (...) He (Mr. Hájek) lived nearby in Zahradní Město (part of Prague), I always endorsed him, shook his hand we met. The communists were taping me all the time. Then they made me a deputy of the Restaurants of Prague 10."

  • "Was the Yugoslavia war cruel?" "Yes, in deed. Germans didn´t take any hostages at the beginning at all. Not until 1942. If they captured someone, they shot him or hang him up. They didn´t caught many partisans though, it were rather the civilians who were helping them. (...) The same with us. If we (the Czech army soldiers) caught some officers we got rid of them immediately. We have had an order to get as much information from them as we could and then kill them. Also our Yugoslavians. Or Croats. There was some Ustasha officer - colonel. I have shot him with my gun. I took him on the side of the road as we were marching and we just left him there. These Ustasha members, their troop, they killed the children, women and everyone. If there were many of them in the group, they used to be sent to the non combat side of the front. Or they have been given various work or something like that. They were not likely to be shot."

  • "I hadn´t seen my brothers. My brother, who lives in Germany now, I didn´t see until 1957. I didn´t have any idea where he was, or whether he existed. He was only about three years old back then and he didn´t remember his last name. They took him away under fake last name. (...) I have asked the Embassy and the Red Cross for help. Thank to the press I luckily found him in Bulgaria. We set up the meeting point at the former main train station (Wilson train station). And because we never saw each other we agreed that I will carry Rudé právo (former communist daily newspaper) and he will carry the Borb (Yugoslavian newspaper). He came looking like a poor boy, ripped trousers...the war just ended. When our mom died there he hid himself in the corn field. Some old lady found him there. They took him over the Drina River to Serbia. We hugged. Well - that´s life."

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I’m two years older than what is stated on my ID. They used to do this to save the children. They made them younger on purpose to save them

Tichomir Mirkovič in 1945
Tichomir Mirkovič in 1945
zdroj: archiv pamětnika

Tichomir Mirkovič was born in the Prachatice region. He was the son of a Serbian father and a Czech mother. From the time he was two, they lived in Yugoslavia (in Eastern Bosnia). As a member of the Yugoslav people’s liberation army, he participated in the Partisan’s Yugoslavian war (liberation of Belgrade or Croatia crusade). He was injured three times during the war. After the end of the war, he was sent to Czechoslovakia to better his education. He has lived in Prague since 1946. He graduated from The University of Political and Economic Sciences in Prague. He was conditionally taken out of school during the 50´s due to the political battle over Tito’s Yugoslavia. Then in 1968 he lost his job. In protest against this act, he was taken out of the Union of Antifascist Fighters. Presently he is a chairman of the local Czechoslovak Legionnaires community in Prague.