In late September and early October 1941, on the territory of Western Serbia, Šumadija, and Pomoravlje, a larger free territory was created, as a base for the spreading of the Uprising. Much of the territory was liberated by Partisan and Chetnik units, independently or in conjunction. On this territory, called the Republic of Užice, lived close to one million inhabitants. To commemorate this event and to celebrate the 75 years since the establishment of the Republic of Užice Serbian Post has introduced to the collectors` attention a special stamp along with interesting FDC.
The item depicts the Combatants from Kadinjača, (oil on canvas, 1970, Dragoljub Vuksanović). In the background of it is the monument on Kadinjača. StampNews.com invites our readers to appreciate the original design of this historically meaningful philatelic item.
This was the first major free territory in occupied Europe in 1941. During October and November 1941, Užice became the the Supreme Headquarters of NOPOJ, CK KPJ, and General Headquarters of NOPO Serbia and CK SKOJ. On the liberated territory, production was restored at the Užice Arms and Ammunition Factory, weaving mill, hydropower plants, fireroom, wagon house, leather works, printing shops and other workshops.
Health service and railway traffic were organized and vibrant cultural life was blooming. Partisans printed the following newspapers in Užice: Vesti, Borba, Omladinska borba, Bilten Vrhovnog štaba; Novosti in Čačak, and Reč naroda in Gornji Milanovac. In the Partisan unit of Užice an artistic troop was formed within which drama, painting and music section worked. The members of the art studio were: Dragoljub Vuksanović, Pivo Karamatijević, Bora Baruh, Jurica Ribar.
Although Partisans and Chetniks negotiated several times during the autumn, their meetings did not contributed to the establishment of a firmer cooperation, and the conflicts and weakening of the resistence forces actually helped the Germans who began the offensive on the free territories on 25 November 1941, moving at the directions Valjevo – Užice and Kraljevo – Čačak – Užice, progressing rapidly. In the evening of 28 November, the Workers’ Batallion was sent towards Kadinjača, in front of the West A battle group.
The Germans, being far more numerous, technically more equipped and well – trained, rapidly broke the resistence of the enemy. They broke out on the reef of Kadinjača and closed the hoop around the Workers’ Batallion in pincer movements. On 1 December, German 342nd division with three pursuit groups broke out to the Požega – Uvac – Vardište line, a demarcation line with the Italians, which was actually the end of the German offensive. After the end of the offensive on Partisan units, the Germans attacked the headquarters of Dragoljub Mihailović at Ravna Gora, and about 1500 – 2000 Partisans from western Serbia and Šumadija retreated, together with the Supreme Headquarters, to Sandžak.