Anton Tus (22 November 1931 – 4 September 2023): Croatian Military Leader and General
Anton Tus was a distinguished Croatian general, known for his significant roles in the military during crucial periods of Croatian and Yugoslav history. He served as the head of the Yugoslav Air Force and later became the first Chief of Staff of the Croatian Armed Forces during the Croatian War of Independence.
Born on 22 November 1931, Tus commenced his military journey by attending the Yugoslav Air Force Academy, where he honed his skills and knowledge in aviation. Throughout most of his career, he dedicated his service to the Yugoslav Air Force, showcasing his expertise and leadership abilities.
Notably, Tus held various important positions within the Yugoslav Air Force, including being the commander of the 204th Fighter Aviation Regiment and the 5th Air Force and Air Defence Corps. In 1985, he achieved a significant milestone when he was appointed as the head of the Yugoslav Air Force, a position he held until he defected in May 1991 during the tumultuous breakup of Yugoslavia.
During the critical phase of the Croatian War of Independence, Tus emerged as a pivotal figure, becoming the first Chief of the General Staff of the Croatian Armed Forces from September 1991 to November 1992. His tenure in this role was marked by crucial decisions and actions that shaped the early years of independent Croatia.
In the subsequent years, Tus continued to contribute to the Croatian military and international cooperation. He served as President Franjo Tuđman’s chief military advisor and later headed the Defence Ministry’s Office for International Cooperation. Notably, he was also appointed as the chief of the Croatian Mission to NATO until his retirement in 2005.
Anton Tus, a significant figure in the Croatian military landscape, passed away in Zagreb on 4 September 2023, at the age of 91. His contributions and leadership continue to be remembered and appreciated within the context of Croatian and Yugoslav military history.