The Assassination of King Alexander


In picture 2, the king on the left, the minister on the right

kingColonel Piolet on horseback attacks the assassin

It was the first assassination to be caught on news cameras. The assassination of Alexander, first King of Yugoslavians, by Vlado Chernozemski, an experienced marksman in the employ of the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (IMRO) would have been forgotten had it not been for the multitudes of still- and reel- cameras.

A superstitious man, Alexander usually refused to go out on Tuesdays because three of his family members died on Tuesdays. However, on Tuesday 9 October 1934, had no choice; he was arriving in Marseille on the Yugoslav cruiser Dubrovnik, to start a state visit to France to strengthen the two countries’ alliance in the Little Entente. While being driven in a car through the streets along with French Foreign Minister Louis Barthou, Vlado Chernozemski, stepped from the street and shot the King and the chauffeur. The king was wearing his customary bullet-proof vest under his admiral’s uniform, but the mortal bullet went through his back. Because Alexander’s mortal wound was in his back, experts surmised that a bullet from one of Alexander’s wildly firing bodyguards probably killed him. He had been on French soil for less than five minutes.

Barthou was accidentally shot by a French policeman and died later. Immediately after assassinating King Alexander, Chernozemski was cut down by the sword of a mounted French policeman, Colonel Piolet, and then beaten by the crowd. He died in custody that evening and was laid to rest in a Marseilles cemetery in the presence of two detectives and a grave digger. The cameraman, Georges Mejat of Fox-Movietone News, captured not merely the assassination but the immediate aftermath; the body of the chauffeur (who had been killed instantly) became jammed against the brakes of the car, allowing the cameraman to continue filming from within inches of the King for a number of minutes afterwards. To add the dramatic flourish, he focussed on the submachine Mauser gun Chernozemski used to kill Alexander as the gun was being picked up by a gendarme.

Alexander was among the most hated dictators in Europe, and it was eventually discovered that a half-dozen other would-be assassins of various nationalities were waiting in Marseilles that day. He was a despotic man who declared himself King-Dictator, and abolished the constitution. He used murder as an instrument of government, outlawed all political parties and began persecution of Jews. When the famed Croatian intellectual Milan Sufflay was murdered by his secret police, even Albert Einstein and Heinrich Mann joined in the international chorus of condemnation. By the time of his death, more than 19,000 Croatians had been sentenced to prison for up to twenty years or more and over two hundred had received the death penalties; hundreds more “committed suicide,” died of illness in prison or were shot by gendarmes in the “suppression of rebellion.”

8 thoughts on “The Assassination of King Alexander

  1. Who ever wrote this, don’t know anything about his majesty king Aleksandar I Karadjordjevic. He was a big patriot, and he was doing only good things for his country. Try to find the facts about him in library’s, instead writing some nonsense and throwing mud on his majesty. This whole text is a discrase, and the author should be ashamed because of what he wrote.
    Shame on You!

  2. I agree with Hawthorn, it appears Dejan Petrovic is a biased reader rather than a lover of truth. As are most humans; lovers of lies and of telling lies. Yugoslavia is a mess, bottom line, always has been. For anybody to say anything good about a nation where everybody dies, that person is the definition of insane.

    • Thank you Alex Selwyn-Holmes for a great article. You put it in easy to read, easy to understand, quickly digestible format. Unlike all the other authors who waste our time by telling us the entire history of a nation whose history is nothing more than a whirlwind of insanity and truly has no reason or rhyme to it. No reason to even rehash it. When people are insane, love death, filled with hatred, and have no desire for peace, what difference does it make what led them to their current predicament? They’re insane, end of story. They didn’t move to another country, they’re insane, end of story. When a driver goes off the road and crashes into a bunch of people, bursting into flames, and everybody dies, we simply say that person was a bad driver. That’s the answer, that’s the explanation, a bad driver. When a nation is screwed up, it’s obviously bad people producing bad politicians. Simple explanation. Just like the situation America is in right now. Politicians are not born into office, they’re not from another country, they’re not from another planet, they’re your neighbor, or relative, and you voted them into office, or allowed them into office, or they took that office, whatever, but they none-the-less came from your community, your nation. So who is screwed up? That’s right, the community, the people, where that politician was born, raised, lived, and eventually ended up in office, same place all politicians come from, they’re not cloned, or from another country. Pick any person from that nation, and they’ll probably do the same exact things the previous politicians did. Why? Because they’re not any different from the rest of the people in their nation. Their party might be different, but guess what, usually 50% or more of the nation are in that same party. For a nation to be split by just an issue of party, a right side and left side, oh wow, that’s such a huge gap, such a huge difference, it’s almost like they’re from different planets, aliens, different animals entirely, not! They’re both humans, from the same community, fighting over a toy, just like children. What’s the issue? One? Two? How many issues? Just a couple? How ridiculous. Two adults fighting over a toy. That’s the definition of insanity, especially when those babies pick up guns and start killing each other. Humans are children. Fighting over toys. It’s that simple.

  3. You stupid blogging piece of shit…you’re not a historian or scientist, how can you say anything about this??!!

    Those “various nationalities were waiting in Marseilles that day” revolutionaries, were terrorists who later become infamous army of USTAŠE in Croatia (Ante Pavelić),protected then in 1934. by Mussolini …and responsible for killing over 1 MILLION, Serbs, Jews and Roma people in concentration logor of Jasenovac and Gradiška from 1941 – 1944 – IT’S A WELL KNOWN FACT – YOU CAN READ IT ON WIKI TOO. …SO NOW GO AND READ SOME MORE YOU PIECE OF FUCKIN SHIT BEFORE YOU START TO WRITE THIS FECAL MATTER LINES – YOU WEAK NO LIFE BLOGGING MISERABLE IGNORANT COCKSUCKER!! –

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