Croatian Forces take control of the strategic Trokut Motel in western Slavonija

After the forces of the 56th Independent Kutina Battalion and 65th Independent Ivanić Grad Battalion liberated the village of Lovska between Novska and Lipik as part of Operation “HURRICANE ‘91”, the final battle for the strategic Trokut Motel began on 19 November 1991.

Located exactly halfway between Novska and Lipik, the Trokut Motel was of exceptional strategic importance as it allowed for monitoring of the territory around Bair, Lovska, Brezovac and Donji Čaglić  in the Novljan area. Despite several unsuccessful attempts by Croatian forces to take control of this position, it was still partially surrounded even though the villages of Bair, Popovac, Brezovac, Livađani and Lovska were liberated during the course of Operation “HURRICANE ‘91”.  

To help Serb forces at the Trokut Motel, the Yugoslav People’s Army (YPA) air force rocketed the positions of the 117th Brigade on 18 November, killing 2nd Battalion Commander Darko Ozmec and wounding seven soldiers. However, that did not discourage the members of that Koprivnica-Križevci brigade, assisted by the 56th Independent Battalion, from liberating the motel the next day.

It was a significant victory that solidified the line of defense, united forces at an important crossroads and facilitated surveillance of activity in and between enemy stongholds. This triumph opened up the path for the liberation of western Slavonia, particularly towards Korita, Jagma and Lipik. One of the legends of the Homeland War, Miroslav Blažek Kina, recalled the morning of 19 November when the Trokut was liberated:

We came up with a tactic that obviously worked. We attacked from two directions but it gave the enemy the illusion that we were attacking with very large forces from four directions and instead of resisting, they simply left. My soldiers and I came to the Trokut area and had the breakfast they had prepared. I remember what it was… there was tea, bread and sausages. We ate their breakfast.

Sources
Literature
Marijan, Davor. Novska u Domovinskom ratu. Novska: HVIDRA, 2009.

Internet
Antun Ciglenečki: “Za doručak smo jeli čaj, kruh i kobasice”, Compas.com.hr, access achieved November 11, 2019, https://www.compas.com.hr/clanak/3/134/za-doruak-smo-jeli-aj-kruh-i-kobasice.html

TV
Kako je obranjena Hrvatska (episode 12). Croatian radiotelevision. Director: Zoran Margetić, screenwriter: Tomislav Šulj, 2016

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