Josip Broz Tito

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Josip Broz Tito was an ethnical Croatian Yugoslav Communist politician. He was the leader of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 1945 until his death in 1980. He was a popular leader both inside and outside Yugoslavia.

Tito is still seen as the typical Yugoslav hero, and in the former Yugoslav countries, he's seen by most people as a hero. Especially in what's now Croatia, because this was where he came from.

He was an active resistance fighter in the Second World War, and the most prominent of the Partisans during the war.

In 1941, Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and Fascist Albania invaded the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in a campaign called Operation Punishment. Tito then joined the Partisans and was the most prominent Partisan leader. In 1943, Yugoslavia became the first country where the resistance movement succesfully overthrew the Fascist puppet goverment. Then the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was founded. It was a federal republic consisting of the federated republics Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Bosnia and Hercegovina, Slovenia and Macedonia.

Tito fastly became a popular leader after he became president in 1945. During the Cold War he remained [[neutrality|neutral] between the great Soviet Union and the United States of America. Unlike many other countries in Eastern Europe, where many ended up as sad authoritarian states repressed under Stalinism (such as Romania and the DDR), Tito's rule was democratic and popular. He was also the inspiration for many Communists and Socialists in other countries, and his ideology was known as Titoism. Josef Stalin used to purge supporters of Tito, like he had done with Trotskyists before. Tens of thousands of Titoists and suspected Titoists were murdered during Stalin's regime.

After Stalin's death in 1953, Nikita Khrushchev accepted Yugoslavia's neutrality and re-etablished relations between the two countries as part of his de-Stalinization. Yugoslavia remained neutral throughout the whole Cold War.

When Tito died in 1980, Yugoslav politicians tried to continue to keep Yugoslavia as a federation, but because these politicians weren't as good as Tito, they failed and racism between the ethnic groups in Yugoslavia became clear. This aggravated much because of nationalist leaders of the different ethnical groups in Yugoslavia, such as Slobodan Milosevic (Serbia) and Alija Izetbegovic (Bosnia-Hercegovina), who believed their ethnicity was more worthy than the other people in Yugoslavia. This led to the breakup of Yugoslavia and a series of brutal wars in Yugoslavia who lasted throughout the whole 1990s. The most brutal of these were the civil war in Bosnia from 1992 and 1995.