ith the sight of many capitalist as well as soviet communist views showing different perspectives as to how communism was integrated into Romania, which can be described as inaccurate, I wanted to offer a true insight as to how Romania became a communist country for such a long period of time. First of all, we surely have to mention that the armistice signed with the Soviets during the Second World War was a conclusive factor in the integration of communism or at least an influence. However, I believe that the governmental bodies within the Romanian government that were found to be socialist had a big play.
By 1944 when Romania was still on the Axis side in World War 2, the soviets had already invaded Moldova. Therefore, the pressure was building up, which has turned quite a few governmental bodies to look at socialism as an answer for their salvation. Seeing that there is no chance of surviving the war without an armistice, there was a high need to raise awareness about communism so that the population would vote for the upcoming communist party in order to change the faith in the country.
The only problem was that these people were blind as they only considered the good things that communism brought, and the bad was left as a surprise for the years to come. Communism did bring some good things to Romania. However, I do not think that these good things will ever balance out the suffering of the population. To get a better understanding, I will take you back right to the end of the Second World War to see how things have been unveiled.
1946- Death of Marshal Ion Antonescu
After he had been decommissioned by King Michael I of Romania in 1944, he was handed to the socialist party, which sent him to be imprisoned in the Soviet Union for one year until his trial, where he was sentenced to death at his own request. He knew that a life sentence would be worst than hell for him because of the things he had done and his dictatorship against the Soviet Union. Therefore, he chose to take the bullet with honor.
Another reason why he was against the armistice was that he knew the worst that communism had to bring to Romania. From records of his trial, he has stated that because of communism Romania will not even be left with his own ashes after his death. By this, he meant that communism would take everything that Romania has worked and fought for over the years. As sad as it sounds, he was right.
It is imperative to understand that the socialist/communist party of Romania had a major influence from the Soviet Union. At the same time, the Soviet Union was using all the natural resources and supplies without giving a dime back because they were seeing it as taking back resources in order to repair the damages caused by the Second World War until 1944 when the armistice was signed.
On the 1st of June 1946, Marshal Ion Antonescu was shot as the socialists were watching from aside, smirking at his failures. King Michael has insisted that he would be given a life sentence instead of a death sentence. However, he has chosen to respect his wish to die now than root in a Soviet prison.
1947- Abdiction of King Michale I
At this time, the King was still in power with the setting of his new government since 1944 when he claimed back his power from Marshal Ion Antonescu. However, the increasing support for the Romanian Workers’ Party (Romanian Communist party) led by Petru Groza was becoming a problem as it was causing instability within the Government. The support for this party was also caused by the Soviet military presence within the country at the time.
Even if the population of Romania was in love with King Michael I and the way that the government was run, the first hit of corruption from the Romanian Workers Party was about to hit. The last rusty nail was set at the Yalta conference in 1945, where Petru Groza obtained a key position within the state, and with the support of the Soviet Union, he had the power to do what he wanted in Romania.
On the 30th of December 1947, Petru Groza and his communist party forced the king to sign his own abdication. The king did not want to give the governance of Romania to a communist party as he knew well not only from Marshal Ion Antonescu but other important governmental bodies what this would mean for the future of Romania. In the end, the King was almost forced at gunpoint to sign, therefore, going into exile until 2007, when he made his first visit back to the country.
A week after the King went into exile, the Socialist Republic of Romania was formed in partnership with the Soviet Union to rule Romania under a communist government. This is the country that has seen the best and the worst of communism until 1989.
1948- Presidium of Constantin Ion Parhon
One of the most intelligent and schooled Romanian at the time with an Honorary Doctorate from Charles University was Constantin Ion Parhon who also had the bad vice of being a communist. Petru Groza, he has created the communist government or better said the Communist Worker’s party, which was an idea they had in mind from 1943. Many sources have stated that the actual party existed even before King Michael’s forceful abdication, which would mean that the party was running illegally, proving once again that these two communists who had been leading the Workers’ Party of Romania, were pretty corrupt even if they were communists.
Parhon actually made himself the President of the Presidium of the Great National Assembly in Romania, which in coordination has supposedly controlled and ruled Romania under a communist regime until 1952 when Petry Groza would take power and show what a true Soviet Communistic system meant.
As Parhon was schooled in foreign countries, he had a large network of important connections around Europe that has been built since 1918. Historians say that Parhon was more of a pawn that was used to raise the Workers Party of Romania (between 1943 and 1948 when it was integrated as the new government) because of his important connections, especially the connections formed with governmental bodies of the Soviet Union in 1934 before the Second World War.
1952- Petru Groza Coming to Power
Petru Groza was known for being a communist even before the Second World War. The start of the Socialist Republic of Romania was highly influenced by his friendship with many Soviet governmental bodies and strong communist connections. He was also sent to help with negotiate an armistice with the Soviet Union during World War 2 in which he stated to the king upon his request to sign his own abduction that this is a request from the Soviet Union upon signing the armistice. Later in time, contemporary historians found out that this was a big lie, it is true that the Soviets wanted Romania to be under a communist government. However, they never stated their intention toward the abdication of the King.
It is quite interesting how communism talks about neglecting any sort of corruption. However, I see abuse of power as corruption. It is also imperative to understand this point that communism was different before the Cold War, in the sense that many forceful decisions were made at gunpoint. I do not see many people or historians talking about the well-known writers that have been either beaten to death or shot in their imprisonment by the communist party for writing the truth about how communism was overtaking Romania.
At the same time, records are impossible to be found to justify because communists have burned their work. What communists hated the most and including Petru Groza is someone portraying communism in a negative image. Calling communism unfair would get you shot right in the middle of bought daylight. The communist system that was implemented for the future of Romania would bring menacing violence to the poor population of Romania.
After Petru Groza many leaders have followed until 1989, when Nicolae Ceausescu ( the last communist leader of Romania) was shot by his own people, overthrowing communism. Many do not know that Romania was actually the last European country under a communist system as communism fell last in Romania. Many describe the life of Romanian citizens during the communist era as miserable despite all the propaganda.
Despite Ion Anotnescu’s Dictatorship, which was influenced by the fascists during the first half of the Second World War, the last words he publicly stated upon his trial were more than right. The Soviet Union highly influenced the government of Romania from 1947 until 1985 to the point where the Soviet Union wanted to transform Romania to be exactly like the Soviet Union from most perspectives.
I hope that this article will bring some light on this topic and will show the truth. Communism was never a clean business but what is important to take home from this is how people like Ion Antonescu (despite his views) and King Michael I have fought for the freedom of their country and people. However, they are the ones that ended up either dead or in exile.