Pots, putty, and wires: Croatian separatist terrorism and the hijacking of TWA 355 Public Deposited

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  • March 22, 2019
  • Gensler, Luke John
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Center for Slavic, Eurasian, and East European Studies, Russian, Eurasian and East European Concentration
  • On September 10, 1976, five Croatian nationalist, led by Zvonko Busic, hijacked TWA flight 355 shortly after it took off from New York. What followed was a thirty-hour ordeal that saw the plane be re-routed and flown across the Atlantic. The journey ended in Paris, where French authorities refused to negotiate. This paper examines this hijacking and circumstances surrounding it. I place the hijacking within three broader contexts: international terrorism; Croatian nationalism; and the Croatian separatist movement, which emerged in the Croatian diaspora following World War Two. I argue that the hijacking of TWA 355 was an act by Zvonko Busic to cement his legacy in the history of Croatian nationalism. The hijackers made clear choices to use the spectacle of international hijacking to publicize the cause of Croatian independence in an attempt to gain international support and legitimacy for Croatian independence.
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  • In Copyright
  • Jenkins, Robert
  • Master of Arts
Graduation year
  • 2014

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