Friday, 18 March 2011

A law we *really* do not need in these parts.

From the frequently diverting Croatian Times:

"The 25-year-old T.S. is suspected of setting the European Union flag on fire during anti-government protests in Croatia's capital Zagreb.  He has been accused of damaging the reputation of an international organization, which is considered a criminal offense".
(See interesting, and frankly downright terrifying additional information in the comment by Furor Teutonicus)

Puts me in mind of an old Soviet Union era joke:

An American and a Russian are arguig the merits of their respective nations, and the American avers that he can stand in Times Square and declare the President is an idiot and go unpunished.  To which the Russian rebutts - "If I stand in Red Square and say your President is an idiot they will make me a Hero of the Soviet Union!"


  1. Just how DO you damage the reputation of the EU? I'm pretty sure it's got that in hand all on its own...

  2. Not only in Kroatia. It is an offence in ALL E.U lands. In Germany it is under "StGB 1 §90a Verunglimpfung des Staates und seiner Symbole."

    Who publicaly, in a crowd or meeting, or through written word…

    §§2 The colours, the flag, the crest or the National anthem of Germany, or one of it´s constituent Countrys, demeans or dispparages will be sentenced to three years in prison or a fine.

    Also sentenced will be any person who openly (Publicaly) destroys, removes, damages, makes unusable or defaces the national flag, or flags of the constituent countrys, or any Ministerial (Government departmental), symbols or signs of authority, or comits insults or dissorderly conduct towards same.

    This includes the E.U flag. And MOST, if not all countries have enacted similar into their laws. (Britain??)

    The E.U flags you see on web sites with the hammer and sickle, or swastikas? Illegal, and in theory whoever desplays/designs them, COULD end up sewing designer mail bags.

  3. Julia - yes, the 'experts' seem to have it covered...

    FT - I am indebted to you for the additional facts - thank you