‘Visionary’, Vicka Ivankovic-Mijatovic (above left) brought her sun-spinning madness and demented rictus grin to the Late Late last night.
Without any real challenge, Vicka told her hoary old story (through an interpreter), of how, as a young girl, Mary appeared to her and her schoolfriends in the Bosnian town of Medjugorje.
And, in her case, keeps appearing, every day, standing “on a grey cloud”.
Chompsky’s dog-walker recalls visiting the shrine during the siege of Mostar, one of the early atrocities of the Bosnian war.
Apparently by then (1992) some of the visionaries had retracted their claims of seeing Mary. but owing to the amount of money coming into the town they were told to keep mum.
They were kept far away from the public and the visionary racket continued unaffected throughout the conflict (1991-95) which often raged around the town.
No mortars ever landed in Medjugorje, not because of the grace of God (as the pilgrims, many from Ireland, were told and believed), but because town bosses had paid off all the local warlords.
Croatian war criminal Mate Boban held regular press conferences there and, in a final irony, one of the visionaries’ husbands, a Bosnian-Croat soldier, would commute into Mostar to take his part in the attempted massacre of its Muslim population.
What the Blessed Virgin thought about all this went unrecorded.
All of which doesn’t mean Vicka didn’t see Mary. Nat saw De Valera during mushroom season last year. But couldn’t there have been one person in the studio to challenge this old ham on her preposterous claims, or even put a few of them under the spotlight?
As one would with – oh, say – Jim Corr?
Watch full interview here (starts at 30 mins)