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Romanian President defies scandal in condemning communist regime "explicitly and categorically"

de     HotNews.ro
Luni, 18 decembrie 2006, 0:00

Photo: TVR

A joint session of the two chambers of the Romanian Parliament in which President Traian Basescu presented a report condemning communism for the first time in CE European history was marred by unprecedented protests among some parliamentarians that prompted security officers to intervine to calm down demonstrators.

Traian Basescu appeared before the Parliament to present a report put up by a presidential commission of historians and experts that studied the effects of the 45-year communist regime on Romania and its people. The report found communism as an “illegitimate and criminal regime”.

The report names and blames communist-era officials who supported a regime that affected the interests, rights and security of its people. Among those names one can find many of today’s politicians, including ex-President Ion Iliescu and far-right leader Corneliu Vadim Tudor.

That prompted charges that the report was based on biased historical investigations.

Basescu accompanied the presentation with a statement that said “as head of the Romanian state, I explicitly and categorically condemn the communist system of Romania” in the second half of the 1900s.

The statement showed the communist regime in Romania was based on a “foreign diktat” in the years of 1944-1947 and could only last until its collapse in December 1989.

In a position unprecedented in former communist states of the ex-Soviet bloc, Basescu said he fully supported the findings of the commission condemning communism as the regime was based on a “fanatical ideology, an systematic hate-fueling ideology for which class fight and the dictatorship of workers symbolized the essence of historical progress”.

And he asked the joint chambers of the Parliament to support the statement condemning the crimes of the communist regime, of regret and compassion towards its victims. And he called for the building of a monument dedicated to victims of communism and the establishment of a Communist Dictatorship Museum in Romania.

He also hailed anti-communist dissidents who rose their voice against late dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, including intellectuals like Paul Goma, Mircea Dinescu or Radu Filipescu, but also Liviu Babes, a man who in early 1989 put himself on fire in protest of the communist regime.

But his statements were marred by Corneliu Vadim Tudor, the leader of the far-right Greater Romania Party-PRM, and his party colleagues who booed the President throughout his speech.

CV Tudor, who was a “court poet” for the Ceausescu family under the communist regime and ran a daily newspaper seen as the mouth of the Securitate, Ceausescu’s dreaded political police, also carried a banner depicting Basescu behind bars and reading “the Prison of the Mafia”.

While not as violent in their behavior as the PRM parliamentarians, representatives of the Social Democratic Party-PSD, the main opposition group in Romania, also dismissed the report as futile and lacking credibility.

According to PSD president Mircea Geoana the document - known as the Tismaneanu Report after the name of Vladimir Tismaneanu, the head of the presidential commission - was presented at a time when Romania did not need such fuss as a country about to join the European Union.

"The wounds of the past have been re-opened," Geoana added.
























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