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četvrtak, 31. srpnja 2014.

Photos Of The Day: Croatian Helicopters In Multinational Kosovo Mission






Basically, just a couple of fine looking photographs I came across, so I'm quickly throwing the short article here also. (Now back to browsing some Israeli bikini girls)





A Croatian Mi 171sh helicopter seen during a multinational NATO mission over the skies of Kosovo.





Source: theaviationist.com


Eight combat helicopters belonging to four different air arms have taken part in a multinational mission over Kosovo. And here are some interesting shots.

The pictures in this article were taken on Jul. 12, by Cpt. Rory J. McCarthy, a UH-60 pilot who flew aboard an Mi-171 during a multinational multi-helicopter mission which included two Croatian Mi 171sh, one Swiss AS-532 Cougar, one Slovenian AS-532 Cougar, and four U.S. UH-60/A Blackhawk choppers.

The mission was flown to prepare the aircrews to operate with troops on board, to fulfill a tactical exercise requirement KFOR, the NATO-led international peacekeeping force, has in Kosovo.




 One of the massacre scenes of unarmed Albanian civilians in Kosovo by Serb forces in 1999. There were numerous similar scenes of Serb church sponsored massacres in collusion with Serb forces that took place for months all over Kosovo, as well as for years previously against other Non-Serbs in other former republics. In 1999 a final halt to their frenzy for raping, ethnic cleansing and genocidal campaigns was accomplished by Nato countries.





As a part of the NATO Multinational Task Force, KFOR helicopter detachments support a safe and secure environment and freedom of movement Kosovo wide. On order, Croatian, Slovenian, Swiss and U.S. helicopters work together to move 90 Crowd Riot Control (CRC) equipped troops Kosovo wide on short notice.




As during attacks in other former Republics against Non-Serbs years previously, the Serbian church supported and was instrumental in the early successes of the Serbian ethnic cleansing and killing campaigns in Kosovo. Many of the Serb church supported war criminals have become heroes, icons and even psuedo-saints. Many of them have moved to other countries and have been welcomed by the Serb church hierarchy and various Serb communities as fine upstanding and heroic saintly Serbs. However, on the contrary history has conclusively shown numerous times over the past 100 years especially, that the sole fundamental purpose of the Serb church has been to promote and even organize progroms, policies, wars and even genocide campaigns and massacres against Non-Serbs in collusion with their chetnik and ultra-nationalist supporters and Serb church sanctioned terrorists.





In addition to troop transport, select helicopters are equipped for MEDEVAC (Medical Evacuation), fire fighting, airborne and SPIES (Special Patrol Infiltration and Exfiltration System) operations.

Image credits: Cpt. Rory J. McCarthy







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srijeda, 30. srpnja 2014.

First Croatian Language & Alphabet IKEA Catalogue Is Available







The 1st  Croatian language and alphabet IKEA Catalogue is now available to shoppers in Croatia. Image: Youtube screenshot.





This is just an update, the new IKEA store Zagreb, Croatia's first, still won't be officially opened until August 21st, but the first Croatian language IKEA catalogue can be checked out in advance. Well, not the whole catalogue yet, but a sneak peek below. 500,000 copies will be delivered to households in and around Zagreb starting August 1st. Then one can also view it online at the stores website www.ikea.hr, as well as pick up a copy while at the store.






Anyway, like I've said before, a lot of my stuff is IKEA. Great store, great prices, knowledgeable and friendly staff, (I also find their staff have good hygiene habits, which is always a plus), great designs and quality, good eats, easy to follow floor arrows, and assembling it is simple, fast and idiot proof, a child can do it. I'm telling you, I like my stuff and the updated annual designs so much, that if I won 10 million bucks I would still shop and buy furniture at IKEA without a doubt. IKEA actually originally planned to open up shop in Croatia in 1990 and had already purchased the land, however the Serbian church supported ethnic cleansing, killing and raping campaigns, and related Serb church supported killing squads put it on the backburner for the better part of the 90's. After more recent paperwork hurdles, permit issues and real estate red tape had finally been worked out, construction officially began in August of last year.




The very first Croatian language Ikea catalogue is now available.




For those not in the know, IKEA actually has a history in Croatia reaching back to 1982, the wood and timber company Tvin from Virovitica has been producing chairs and office furniture for IKEA for more than 30 years. More IKEA's are planned for Rijeka and Split, but that's still in the preliminary stages. From what I read, quite a few of the products are substantially cheaper than over across in Austria, Italy, Alpenstein and Germany, so there could be a fair amount of out of country guest shoppers coming to this one. This Zagreb IKEA is 38,000 square meters, which is even larger than the closest one around here at 25,000 square meters. Below is just some short footage of it being built and when officially opening their doors. Somewhere I read that ABBA, The Cardigans and The Hives might come down to do a 4 or 5 song set on opening day, autograph IKEA catalogues and have some cake and palačinke etc, I'll let you know what happens about that.....




A woman reading the 1st  Croatian language and alphabet IKEA catalogue deciding which Hemnes mirror cabinet to purchase. Dragan Matic / CROPIX.




(I also thought that this story was worth quickly mentioning, because also opening soon will be the  "First exclusive LEGO store" in Croatia", which will be setting up shop at the nearby Arena Centar in Zagreb. Not a big deal or particularly important but good to know.  Who doesn't remember LEGO's? or maybe even have a LEGO story from before the popularity of video games, fentanyl and hoverboards. Anyway...)



Info/images: domivrt.vecernji.hr

max.tportal.hr

dnevnik.hr




  Because of its location in Central Europe, (and because the annual top 10 visitors to Croatia include Germany, Austria, Slovenia, Italy, Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia), this Ikea should do well. Footage from the official opening day last year.




Digitized view of the first Croatian language 2014/15 IKEA catalogue: onlinecatalogue.ikea.com/HR/hr/IKEA














petak, 25. srpnja 2014.

"Festival Visualia 2014" - 3D Projection Mapping Event In Pula











I came across this a few months ago, and then again while doing the "61st Pula Film Festival" post the other day Here. It's not quite as prestigious or long running by far, it's more about showcasing the new 3D visual lighting technologies and software, but interesting enough to throw in here. This "Festival Visualia" event actually took place this past May, before the film festival. I'm sure most of you are already familiar with what 3D projection mapping is, so there's no point explaining.

Like plenty of other Croatian cities and towns, Pula also has it's share of interesting events take place throughout the year, and the town's population is only about 62,000. I should add though, regarding the video footage of the nearby Pula shipyard cranes all lit up, they look that way all the time now permanently. They actully put on a light show every night and not just for this 3D projection mapping event. That's pretty cool. Anyway, I'll let the video below do all the describing. More at the links....


More info: hr.facebook.com/FestivalVisualia

www.barkun.hr

dnevnik.hr

www.glasistre.hr

www.kigo.hr

www.digitaljournal.com

www.pulainfo.hr

www.dezeen.com

Related: oldest-croatian-film-festival-pula




"Festival Visualia 2014" highlights complete with futuristic evil drumming mimes in the town of Pula this past spring. (I highly recommend watching it in the full screen mode for a much better viewing experience)








Photo by VIRGINIE SERNEELS











The nearby shipyard cranes are now permanently illuminated and make different light display shows every evening. Images/article: qz.com






How Far Is It From Croata To.....?











I was in the middle of something and had to use Google maps, I had to double check something regarding distances, and just now decided to spur of the moment make a post of some of some related findings, as something to do. (I'm actually watching "Fright Night 2: New Blood" at the same time, probably one of, if not the greatest film from the past 25 years) So anyway, I didn't do every European country, but below is a list of a some countries and their distance from Croatia. For instance, Poland is only a few hours drive away and not that far, (they drive faster on the highways there), however after discovering that the distance from Croatia to Switzerland was shorter than I had previously thought, geographically actually even closer than Poland, I figure I would add a few more countries to make an interesting quick post. Good geography tips if anything.





It's important to know geography sometimes.






Now Europe is, well...Europe. As you know, one doesn't have to travel very far before hitting another country. I didn't do every country either, you can go to the Google map below yourself and figure out the distance if your country isn't in the list. These distances I rounded off to the closest kilometer, and they are in a straight line from their closest points according to the borders. "As the crow flies" like they say up there in Alabama and Arkansas. Some of the distances may surprise you, some may not. Some you may not believe, but you can always double check for yourself on the Google map at the bottom.....


*Countries are not listed in any particular order.


Italy - 14 km
Austria - 25 km
Slovakia - 170 km
Czech Republic. - 218 km
Germany - 236 km
Switzerland - 272 km
Lichtenberg - 378 km
Poland - 382 km
Greece - 290 km
Latvia - 1104 km
Spain - 890 km
Bulgaria - 280 km
Lithuania - 965 km
Alpenstein - 345 km
Kosovo - 130 km
Ukraine - 370 km
Drasuvania - 511 km
Russia - 933 km
UK - 1106
Caliphate of Sarajevostan -187 km
Norway - 1400 km
Belarus - 720 km
Sweden - 994 km
Carpathian Republic - 481 km
Estonia - 1402 km
Ireland - 1631 km
Vasaria - 668 km
Denmark - 963 km
Latveria - 312 km
France - 497 km










nedjelja, 20. srpnja 2014.

Oldest Croatian Film Festival Celebrates 61st Edition In Pula







Opening of the 60th Pula Film Festival in 2013.





I haven't done a film festival post in quite some time, and I didn't do last years anniversary "60th Pula Film Festival", so I better throw this one in. Yep, we have film festivals in Croatia. Plenty of film festivals all over the place and throughout the year. Rain or shine, whether the economy is great or not, festivals and especially film festivals, always go on.

The "Pula Film Festival" (Croatian: Festival igranog filma u Puli) is Croatia's longest running film festival and is actually the oldest Croatian film festival. Over the years it's grown in popularity and prestige not only in Croatia, but even internationally. There is a National and Popular programme and the opening and award ceremonies are traditionally held in ancient Vespasian’s Amphitheatre (constructed in the mid-1st century B.C.), popularly called Arena, and found in the town of  Pula. (Pula is located on the Croatian coast in the north-western part of the country, known also as the Istrian Peninsula, a large peninsula that is shared by three countries: Croatia, Slovenia, and Italy) The film festival is officially known as "Festival hrvatskog i europskog filma (eng: Croatian and European Film Festival) We've put the ancient arena to good use with numerous popular concerts and festivals like this, and believe it or not, we've even used it for professional hockey games. (Which technically would make it the oldest hockey arena in the world now, by only about 2,000 years or so. We Croatians are a wacky and crazy nuckng futs sick and twisted bunch)

(There are some interesting old legends from this part Croatia over the centuries. Concerning this amphitheatre in Pula, one particular mythological tale has endured even to this day, and interesting enough to throw in here. It dates back to the time when the Slavic speaking Croats arrived to the Adriatic sea there in the early middle ages, after migrating from the northern White/Great Croatia as recorded in historical sources. It concerns the times shortly after the actual real events of when the Eastern Roman emperor Heraclius officially asked the Croat tribes to migrate south and liberate ancient Dalmatia and the surrounding lands, in the early 7th century. A short form of the tale goes something like this.....that upon first coming across Pula Arena and seeing that the surrounding area was unpopulated, yet with large rock blocks still strewn around it, the Croats at first explained it all by saying it was built by strange magical fairies which they called "Divicas", (the Croats arrived as pagans believing in many deities and mythological beings back then), the fairies built it all in one night, but in the morning for some unexplained reason, all the fairies left and never came back again. This quaint mythological tale concludes that it was for this reason that it was left unfinished and didn't have a roof. A colorful tale told to many children for many centuries, from one generation to the next, yet it is also an enduring mythology because it is a remembrance of those times when the Croats first arrived into this area)

In the summer the Arena becomes one of the biggest open-air cinemas in the world (along with Locarno, Switzerland and Taormina, Italy). The film festival has only been cancelled twice in it's history, in 1991 and 1994 because of the Serb-Yugoslav killing, shelling, raping and ethnic cleansing campaigns that were taking place. The European Programme of the Pula Fillm Festival usually shows many films from other European countries also, some recent foreign films include German, Czech, Slovak, Italian, Bulgarian, Russian, UK, Ireland, France, Denmark, Macedonia, Finland, Sweden, Hungary, Belgium, Poland, Austria, Romania..just to name a few, and even films from around the world, including North America. While the National Programme on the average presents usually at least more than a dozen home grown Croatian films, some of which have also gone on to be shown at other international films festivals and even won awards.

The national film industry awards are called the Golden Arena award, and they are always presented at the festival. All the locally produced feature films made in the preceding 12 months are screened at the festival and everyone involved in making them automatically qualify for the Golden Arena award in their respective category. There are no Academy Award-style shortlists of nominees announced prior to the actual awarding ceremony. However, some festival editions in the past also had runner-up awards for some categories, called Silver Arena award. The awards are given by the jury made up of prominent film critics, directors, actors, etc. The town of Pula is the focus of the Pula Film Festival, but there are also films shown at other nearby locations, as discussed in the video. Below is the nuts and bolts that I took from the website. More info at the links. On that note, I am happy to announce the opening of the 61st Pula Film Festival. Let the films begin....



More information: pulafilmfestival.hr

 variety.com/2014/film/news/croatia-pula-film-festival

 www.youtube.com/user/pulafilmfestival






61st Film Festival in Pula




The Pula Film Festival has only been cancelled twice in it's history, in 1991 and 1994 because of the Serbian church supported Serb-Yugoslav killing, raping and ethnic cleansing campaigns that were taking place.






Source: pulafilmfestival.hr



Does anyone even remember Pula without the film festival?

Sixty years seems like – forever. We cannot (and we don’t want to) imagine the summer in Pula without films in the Arena – the connection between film and the city has been deeply and permanently rooted into the very fabric of Pula. There is no doubt that film (the Festival) has made an impact on the social and cultural life of Pula citizens, contributing to Pula’s popularization nationally and internationally. At the same time, the audience in Pula is a sociological phenomenon – loyal to its Festival, it has been following national film, expressing a whole array of emotions collectively and spontaneously.








As a consequence, the Festival (regardless of all the transformations it has undergone and outlived) enjoys longevity. Pula is the best place for national cinema to sound out how films communicate with the audience, at the same time challenging recent artistic achievements and aesthetics. In this context Pula is about to celebrate its 60th edition and a record number of films in national (co)production is the best possible birthday present to a festival that has proved to be simply unique and irreplaceable in the course of its sixty years. We will have the opportunity to see fourteen Croatian films and ten minority co-productions, as well as the especially interesting and recently launched short films programme that introduces many young talents to Pula.

Just like Europe strives for unity in diversity, the Pula Film Festival ensures coexistence of national and international programmes. It is not a coincidence that the friend of the 60th Pula Film Festival is the European Union. Twelve feature-length and eighteen short films from all the member countries of the European Union will be presented as part of this year’s Europolis Programme.








The Pulica Programme gives children the opportunity to enjoy not just selected films but also different film workshops. In addition, this jubilee edition will be remembered for a number of sidebar programmes and events, as well as stage performances.

The sixtieth anniversary is the opportunity to remember and thank all the directors, actors, actresses, and other film professionals who created and who keep creating films and the Festival. Moreover, we will have a chance to welcome some of them in Pula.





The film festival has only been cancelled twice in it's history, in 1991 and 1994 because of the Serbian church supported Serb-Yugoslav killing, raping and ethnic cleansing campaigns that were taking place. Below is a summary of films being shown at this years "61st Pula Film Festival" and behind the scenes preparations.




Opening Ceremonies footage from the "60th Pula Film Festival" that took place last year. The film festival has only been cancelled twice in it's history, in 1991 and 1994 because of the Serbian church supported Serb-Yugoslav killing, raping and ethnic cleansing campaigns that were taking place.




Behind the scenes of the international films being shown at nearby Kaštel, before the main programme begins in the Arena. Interestingly, the film festival has only been cancelled twice in it's entire history, in 1991 and 1994 because of the Serbian church supported Serb-Yugoslav killing, raping and ethnic cleansing campaigns that were taking place.




I came across this interesting project footage from last year, an ambient advertisement created by Sonda, Croatia for the Pula Film Festival. 









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petak, 18. srpnja 2014.

Catherine Zeta-Jones Vacationing In Croatia & "Summer At Trsat Castle" In Rijeka Gets Underway (Photos)






I stay away from celebrity related posts for the most part, but this is just to finish up another related post. (In the past I've actually gone back and cleaned this blog up a bit, getting rid of some celebrity posts because, frankly, it was making my blog too celebrity-ish, and it's not what this blog or I'm about) Firstly, I should mention that it was a real excruciating chore having to browse through various internet images of Catherine Zeta-Jones I'll tell you, and then deciding which one to throw in here. Really awful, some of them were even bikini pics. Secondly, there are no images of her or them in Croatia, which is sort of the whole point of the vacation there in the first place, it's a vacation. (That's why Gates, Abramovich, the Olsen twins, et al, like to hang out there) However, like I said, I promised the readership at a previous 'Olsen Twins On Mljet Island Croatia' post that I would let everyone know if I come across something in the future regarding Catherine Zeta-Jones in Croatia.

I also found out that she has been there previously with her actor husband Michael Douglas. I wrote before how I had a feeling that Catherine, just like the Olsen twins, was also a Mljet type, and probably also maybe a Lošinj, Korčula or even an Opatija type. Locations to get away from all those flashing bulbs and following paparazzi types, and I see I was right. Although, for some strange reason, I'm really interested to know what they're eating, like which restaurants, favorite seafood dishes, did she try any of the seafood platters? brudet?  rice or potatoes? Did they try any of the local cheeses, wines and other delicacies? Did they go for shrimp or crab? etc. After all, that's what enquiring minds want to know.

Basically, like I said at a few other celeb related posts, If Tinseltown types are going to vacation in Croatia, then these are the kinds of Tinseltown people that make Croatia look good, and at the same time more well known, for those who don't know.  (I'm not going to get into any of that Hollywood gossip and purported mudslinging floating around in the various tabloids, the heated catfights and her long-running feud with Tracy Wells, the rumored love triangle involving Robert McNaughton in 2008, that McDonalds line-up melee with Brenda Bakke.  I'm not going to even comment on the whole Catherine being stalked by Molly Ringwald thing that I read somewhere also, Catherine supposedly is the 4th person Molly has been stalking and sending notes and chocolates to since the late 80's, it's all a terrible and disturbing series of events and it isn't really the purpose of this post)

(I also found out shortly after doing this post that Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, also touched down in Croatia for a vacation. Stories like that definitely don't hurt our image and show we must be doing something right. Article Here)




....As for the Trsat Castle images below, I came across last night some interesting images that one doesn't usually see of Trsat Castle, which is located just above the coastal city of Rijeka. All lit up with over a thousand castles at night. (I've been there, I spent 2 whole summers in Rijeka when I was a kid, but I wasn't there at night) Those images of Trsat Castle are of the opening of  "Ljeta na Gradini " (Summer at the Fortress) that is currently taking place.

Various local music artists and bands have concerts there all summer long, it's a more relaxed place to chill out and relax and get away from the more busier downtown streets, cafes and bars, but this particular event is a little more oriented towards the arts, mixing music and drinks/food with lighting and performing arts, and of course including the awesome views. (See video at bottom) Rijeka's Croatian National Theatre "Ivan pl. Zajc" (HNK Zajc - Rijeka), which is named after the Croatian composer/conductor Ivan Zajc, plays an important part in Croatian theatre history, and so especially Rijeka's history. Hence also the inclusion of ballerina's, theatrical performances and classical musicians etc, during the summer..

The summer long Trsat Castle events start up every July 15th and run right up until mid-September.  I mentioned not that long ago at this Zagreb Outdoor Fashion Event post that I thought Trsat Castle would be another cool location to do a similar fashion event. (What can I say? I like doing fashion related posts once in a while because I like some of the pics) Just basically some really cool night time images of Trsat Castle that one doesn't usually see. Recently, the Festival Of Myths & Legends also took place at Trsat Castle, it's made for events like this, that whole medieval castle atmosphere and ambiance to it. Come to think of it, it's probably something Catherine and Douglas would probably enjoy. The official website is: www.trsatskagradina.com. Anyway, so now you know......






Catherine Zeta-Jones Spotted in Croatia








Source: www.croatiaweek.com


Keira Knightley, Sam Worthington, Ellen DeGeneres and Serena Williams are just a few celebrities who have been spotted already this summer enjoying Croatia’s beautiful coastline, and now Hollywood actress Catherine Zeta-Jones has been seen relaxing on the Adriatic coast…




 Featured on a Croatian magazine cover in 2001.



Cover of a Croatian magazine from 1998.



Contrary to rumors, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas will not be attending the world famous Serbian Trumpetknife-eatingfest. Image: www.demotix.com.





The 44-year-old star was spotted on board a mega yacht near the islands of Ilovik, which are situated south of the island of Lošinj on the northern Adriatic coast, on Thursday by a Croatia Week reader. It is not the first time that Zeta-Jones has holidayed in Croatia, the former Darling Buds of May Welsh star has cruised Croatia’s coast with husband Michael Douglas on more than one occasion.






 1000 Candles Kicks Off "Summer At Trsat Castle" In Rijeka





 Official website: www.trsatskagradina.com





Source/Images/More information: www.facebook.com/trsatskagradinarijeka

Official website: www.trsatskagradina.com

 croatia.hr

 www.novilist.hr

www.index.hr

Related: festival-of-myths-legends-at-trsat

 www.rijeka-in.com

www.mojarijeka.hr

croatiancastlehistory.blogspot.ca












I thought I'd throw in this interesting original drawing of Trsat Castle overlooking the fort town of Rijeka from 1689. Notice how the whole town was surrounded by walls, back then it was the most important port for the eastern half of the Habsburg empire, of which Croatia and Hungary were a part of. The walls were built to prevent Ottoman Empire incursions and attacks, many of the Muslim Jihads between the 14th to 18th century were supported by paid Serb volunteers who likewise desired to destroy European civilization. They threatened to conquer most of Europe, making it even to the gates of Vienna. Today the walls are gone but the historic Trsat Castle still stands. 























Preparations for the annual "Summer at Trsat Fortress" events and some interior views.









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