Franjo 'Vitez' Simic

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Hrvat
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Re: Franjo 'Vitez' Simic

Post by Hrvat » 14 Oct 2009 02:20

Croatian domobran and Ustasa units at the time of the battle at Kupres 1942...

Franjo Simic 2nd from left, Rafo Boban in the center

Source:ustaskipokret.com

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Hrvat
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Re: Franjo 'Vitez' Simic

Post by Hrvat » 16 Oct 2009 05:20

In Ivo Rojnica's (wartime ustasa official in Dubrovnik) book about his ww2 experiences "Susreti i Dozivljaji 1938-1945" (Encounters and Experiences) he experiences Frano Simic as a patriot, and competant general loved by his troops and civilians alike. He says that he wore a -U- on his chest along with his domobran uniform and when asked if he was a ustasa or domobran general he would reply "I am a Croatian general !"

Rojnica blames the partizan tactic of sewing the seeds of mistrust/prosecution among the HOS ranks in 44' (which he later compares to the mistrust and diunification of all the Croat emigre groups in the post war years) which lead to internal division and the elimiantion of the most competant people (former comrades turning on each other). Rojnica states Boban was jealous when Simic was given military and civilian control over the zupe Dubrava (Dubrovnik) Cetina (Omis) and Hum (Mostar)-> thus including Bobans 'black legion' as it was stationed in Livno at the time.

According to Rojnica with the capitulation of Italy, Simic orders were for Bobans 'Black legion' to re-position itself to Vaganj (on the path Livno-SInj) and on Mosor mountain for anti-pastisan sweeping operations (the argument for the italians) and when the capitulation came it was supposed to take Split and the reserves/weopans of the Italian 6 army, in turn smashing the partizan influence. Apparently Boban instead of this went to Zagreb and slandered Simics orders saying that he wasnt a good Croat, not to be trusted, partizan spy, an anglophile etc. Therefore he directly faults Boban for killing Simic and giving the Partizans the upper hand in getting these crucial supplies. Rojnica says Ustasa bojnik Mate Primorac and dopukovnik Frano Primorac along with Boban went about eliminating Simic from his position, by force if necessary. Upon warning Simic of this he said "You cannot convince me that a Croat will kill a Croat. If in fact that does happen then be ceratin, we wont save Croatia". Rojnica claims Mate Primorac sent two Ustasa soldiers to kill Simic, and that this remained on his conscience and bothered Primorac later in Argentina

Larry D.
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Re: Franjo 'Vitez' Simic

Post by Larry D. » 16 Oct 2009 17:50

ŠIMIĆ, Franjo (vitez). (DOB: 25.05.00 in Gospić). 06.01.42 Podpukovnik, CO of a mixed German-Croatian artillery group for Operation “Süd-Kroatien” in eastern Bosnia. 01.42 PPuk., CO of 9th Infantry Rgt. (to 08.42). 09.42 Pukovnik, appointed CO of I Domobran Volunteer Rgt. (disguised Ustasha Obrana formation operating in Hercegovina) and concurrently CO of Sector Command Kočerin - Klobuk. Also CO of 2d Mountain Rgt. during 1942-43. Subsequently awarded the Iron Trifoil (Zeljezni trolist) for personal courage in the fight against the partisans around Bugojno and Kupres in summer 1942. 25 Mar 43 Puk., awarded the Great Silver Medal for Courage for service with the I Domobran Volunteer Rgt. 01.12.43 Puk., appointed CO of VI Ustasha Brigade. 02.44 promoted to General. 06.44 appointed CO of Coastal Sector Command Hum-Dubrava †09.08.44 assassinated in Mostar by unknown persons (nationalists say by Chetniks, others say by Ustasha extremists).

If the highlighted portion is correct, and it seems to be the consensus of both primary documents and well-researched published sources, then it would be interesting to know if he was an Ustasha officer himself and if not, then why? I cannot imagine the Ustasha Obrana allowing a Domobran officer to lead a reinforced battalion of elite Ustasha into battle in the very heartland of the Ustasha movement and then a year later giving him command of an active Ustasha Brigade. Anyone have any insight into this conundrum?

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Junak1929
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Re: Franjo 'Vitez' Simic

Post by Junak1929 » 19 Oct 2009 03:03

@Larry D.

Where did you get the above information from ?

In my opinion, it was maybe a form of identification, he was a well known Domobran and the Italians did not want Ustase in the region, maybe it was a good cover-up to have him at the front ? Just a guess.

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Re: Franjo 'Vitez' Simic

Post by Larry D. » 19 Oct 2009 21:24

Junak1929 wrote:@Larry D.
Where did you get the above information from ?
In my opinion, it was maybe a form of identification, he was a well known Domobran and the Italians did not want Ustase in the region, maybe it was a good cover-up to have him at the front ? Just a guess.


The Regiment's composition is described, discussed and corroborated in: Drina (Madrid), br. 1-2/1954, p.30; br. 1/1963, pp.144-47, as well as in both German and Italian military documents.

Your opinions as to his selection are both valid. He was the nominal or titular commander to make the Regiment's presence in Herzegovina acceptable to the Italian command. Luburić was the de facto commander and all of the Regiment's officers were from the Obrana. You can read more about the Regiment here:

http://www.axishistory.com/index.php?id=6083

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Junak1929
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Re: Franjo 'Vitez' Simic

Post by Junak1929 » 19 Oct 2009 23:47

Thanks Larry ! (If you have any issues of Drina for sale I collect !)

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