Milovan Djilas

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Milovan Đilas

Milovan Đilas (1911-1995) was a Communist politician and theorist in Yugoslavia. Born in Montenegro, he joined the Communist Party of Yugoslavia while a student at Belgrade University in 1932. He was a political prisoner from 1933 to 1936. In 1938 he was elected to the Central Committee of the Communist Party and became a member of its Politburo in 1940.

Đilas helped Tito to found the partisan resistance to Nazi Germany during World War II and was a resistance commander during the war. In 1944 he was sent to the Soviet Union to meet with Stalin.

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Ranković, Tito and Đilas

He fought among the partisans to liberate Belgrade from the German Army in 1944. With the establishment of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Đilas became vice president in Tito's government. He was a critic of attempts by Stalin to bring Yugoslavia under greater control from Moscow.

Đilas was sent to Moscow to meet Stalin again in 1948 to try to stem an impending split. Later that year Yugoslavia broke with the USSR and left the Cominform ushering in the informbiro period of conflict with the Soviet Union.

Influenced by Đilas' ideas, pursued a policy of independent socialism that experimented with profit-sharing with workers in state run enterprises.

He was widely regarded as Tito's eventual successor and was about to become President of Yugoslavia in 1954 when he was suddenly expelled from the government and stripped of all party positions for his criticisms. He resigned from the Communist Party soon afterwards.

In 1955 Đilas published The New Class: An Analysis of the Communist System which argued that communism in Eastern Europe was not egalitarian and was establishing a new class of privleged party bureaucrats who enjoyed material benefits from their position. Djilas was arrested for his writings and for his support of the Hungarian Revolution and sentenced to nine years in prison.

He was imprisoned again in the 1960s for publishing Conversations with Stalin.

Đilas opposed to break up of Yugoslavia in the 1990s and the descent into nationalist conflict.

See also

External links

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Further reading

fi:Milovan Djilas nl:Milovan Djilas

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