The Lost World of Communism - Part 3 - Romanian Revolution & Life in Communist Romania



this is the story of a happily married couple nikolai and elena Ceausescu who together ruled romania for nearly a quarter of a century Romanian sarcastically called this socialism in one family the concentration of power in their hands and the cult of personality which surrounded them was quite different from the other communist countries in Europe even the private lives of Romanians were targeted by the church estimates but contraception and abortion were banned any science of rebellion or defiance were ruthlessly silenced when communism collapsed the Cheska's were the only leaders to meet the fate of tyrants [Applause] down one of the walkways in Bucharest's main cemetery is the modest resting place of the man who relentlessly molded the lives of a whole generation in view of the hatred he inspired it is perhaps surprising that his grave is well maintained and the chesco even inspires some respect 20 years later for a few at least I come to church eschars grave every Saturday because thanks to him I have a house I had a job I didn't like anything I've ever said of each it was inconceivable that I shouldn't have food on the table although I raised two children on my own they had all they needed Cheska's popularity began here on the balcony of what was then the Communist Party had painted a few years after he came to power Ceausescu had the courage to criticize the Soviet Union and the other satellite states for invading Slovakia criticized the Soviets by proclaiming Romania's independence from Soviet domination Ceausescu aroused romanian nationalism nikolai melon s coup was in the crowd it was a very emotional speech and at that time if chavez who came down into his feet he would have been regarded as a national hero and i think people would have kissed him [Applause] Shasha skews popularity was to decline but his power did not indeed it grew and was sustained by a cult of personality which had both narcissistic and monarchic overtones as head of state head of the Armed Forces and head of the Communist Party Ceausescu exercised incredible power but it was a power he shared with his wife it was a power which was used to interfere in any aspect of a citizen's life and that even included intruding into the home life of a senior party man like Joe pop he and his wife Nadia were privileged enough to have their own movie camera and projector the pops already had the camera when their first child was born her name is endurance we just come from the maternity ward these are her first days after we brought her home she was so pretty her eyes were so blue and a little red mouth here she was less than two weeks old as a party member Joe should not have married Nadia at all he was a communist and the son of a peasant she was from the former ruling elite and therefore a class enemy who had lost all privileges from Nadia's point of view marriage to Joe was a lifeline you those person you care about suffer because in those days members of the Communist Party were the only people with a good future they were among the few who could have a career live a better life and avoid doing manual work such yeah Joe and Nadia married secretly there are no wedding pictures Unitas the cows do put your mom one Surat shaman would suck that's why after I got married and told them who had married I had problems it was committed to children I was called the Central Committee by a senior party figure who insulted me my usual thought she asked me how I dare to marry without asking for their approval some akka satorious for silicon some communists were atheists so Joe should not have had his daughter baptized if they'd found out at work that we baptized our girl they'd have fired my husband their daughter was baptized secretly and the celebration which followed was held away from prying eyes we celebrated at home because I had a high-ranking position in the party we couldn't celebrate publicly for example in a restaurant the church Ceausescu celebrates the birth of the 20 millionth Romanian he was obsessed with increasing the population to provide manpower for his new industries so in 1966 he banned abortion for all women except for those who already had four children any mother caught having an abortion was jailed as was the abortionist these were serious penalties as crucially contraception was banned as well [Applause] one way to stop abortion was regularly to check all females of childbearing age to see if they were pregnant this was done in some high schools a very unworldly Daniela drag each remembers the first time a gynecologist examined her we didn't really know what he wanted from us but there were rumors going on and we knew he was looking at a certain part of our body that no one had ever looked at before we were scared we were afraid of what they might say they might write down after that kind of examination of what they might tell our parents we didn't even know how you got pregnant at that time maybe we had kissed and maybe you could get pregnant like that there were rumors that if he kissed you could get pregnant but once she learned the facts of life Daniela quickly learned what a nightmare the ban on abortion and contraception was you couldn't have fun having sex while you were afraid everybody was afraid particularly the girls the boys maybe didn't care that much they were not the ones who would have to get an abortion so they didn't really feel what we felt the girls really were scared and they were not confident at all even when having sex and withdrawal was was the method because we couldn't control it for most families and particularly for poor couples like the news who already had three children Jessica's law was terrible he wanted people to have as many children as possible thank you tutto meant them because people had no means to raise them there wasn't enough food housing was scarce and people lived three or four in one room Shasha school later ruled that women working in factories should be inspected every month to see if they were pregnant thus making abortions virtually impossible palace Kiva remembers the inspections I was ashamed but what could I do I was ordered to get undressed the nurses were rude and the doctor would shout too if he didn't like how I lay on the table if it was difficult for him to examine me a short series that the doctors were patronizing and put me down they called me stupid they told me I behaved as if I'd been born in a barn turtles Nadya pop didn't want any more children but when she got pregnant again her doctor told her that an abortion would be too dangerous so she thought of doing an abortion on herself this was quite common in Romania at the time I considered doing it on myself but then I thought am i insane I could be sent to prison I could die when I had my earlier abortions it never occurred to me that I might die but once I had my girl I couldn't take that risk because I had to live for her [Applause] it's estimated that over ten thousand women died from oxd abortions during the Cheska period [Applause] if Nikolai and Elena had large families there'd come a long way from their beginnings in illiterate dirt-poor often drunken peasant homes twenty-seven family members came to hold top positions in party and government but the head of the family for his drive and intelligence had his fair share of hangups one of his closest collaborators was Stefan Andre I've accomplished Lucas Kunz he was painfully aware that he was short that he stuttered that he was ugly no I've ever yet then he didn't have any friends and generally he was always on his guard guard this was a box from various books door total his wife played a completely destructive role revolute cxeh cut it all fear me she was a mean backward shrewd woman who dominated him the Akali Anna Chicago Mina quite apart from her unique access Elena acquired real power when she took control of all political appointments within the party when someone was due to be named as Minister she'd say I don't agree and her opinion was final you know remote there were many instances when I talked to him and he would tell me make sure nobody knows meaning she wasn't to know South Lee Lucas Celestia Elena also used to interfere in cultural matters one target was Stefan Andres wife film star Violetta Andre pushy simple moon salad that I just don't understand why she hated me so much she never even spoke to me was apparently jealous of beautiful women there's also the suggestion that both Josh s Jews were prudish when I shot this issue do I bother them for that would I feel before 1972 I appeared in many many films both on the small and on the big screen just they're not just there filming in these movies I would show my legs I would wear low-cut tops I was shown in the path covered in bubbles in a movie called Felix under Tilia throw fearfully short Elia this was disturbing for the Ceausescu's directors have got wind of Elena's dislike of the ìletís style with a feel for example I was starring in a musical and I was wearing a very revealing bikini mr. Chanin cost underwire there in bikini for the director has the costume designer to throw a chiffon top over my swimsuit so it didn't look so revealing some puller twister coaster bukata that he forgot he asked why I wasn't wearing a one-piece swimsuit through pushy yes I replied that I had soon after Violetta was banned from TV and film Elena Nicolae Ceausescu were to get some useful lessons on manipulating their own image school was inspired by the cult of personality which was a key feature of Kim il-sung's regime in North Korea when I visited North Korea myself I realized how much cha cha school had been impressed by Kim il-sung and the way he ran things could that believe in him chipton they were very good friends to manage the Romanian cult of personality portrayed the peasant Sun alongside the great kings and heroes of the nation's history his wife was queen of romanian science not a bad title for someone who left school at 14 after failing nearly every subject the popular displays of adoration you know Nanette attending these displays was compulsory a quarter of a million would take part in the annual Independence Day Parade one thing you had to wake up very early to work long distances to get to the gathering point and then March on in front of the leadership of the country so that was quite unpleasant on the other hand it was a sort of a get-together that was a good part because you met your friends and then get into a park or anywhere else where they had chippy sausages sandwiches for half a price that they were usually sell for in any other day it was a sort of a popular festival is a huge picnic but when Nikolai marinesko seen here in the studio joined Romanian TV news he discovered the dealing with footage of their leader was no picnic certain images were simply better and that meant let's say all natural things gestures that common people do like dinking or like stuttering or wiping your forehead when it was too hot he had to speak hours and hours on end he hated air-conditioning and he was sweating sometimes cameramen could not avoid getting unsuitable shots so these pictures of Ceausescu relaxing with party cronies were really not quite right this was never shown chewing food or drinking from a glass or a cup of water never just half digestion of taking the cut of the cup or the glass did his lips on one occasion Mellon sq slipped up we don't have the pictures but he certainly has the memories and the incriminated picture showed everything which shouldn't be shown under no circumstances OSHA screen two seconds only did everything wrong he stuttered he dinged he wiped his nose he forced his eyes he was nervous something happened during the thing that was two seconds and that came onto the screen and that was disaster I took the plane and for about six months there was a cut in the salary and I was put to do the menial jobs of the department in the 1960s a band in the town of Timmy shuara had made a name for itself by playing British pop music especially the latest Beatles numbers maybe at your breath wonder how you manage the leader of the Phoenix band niku Kovich was a natural member of the awkward squad typically he filmed his band traveling upstream literally here was his response to church s cruise announcement that all Romanian art may only draw on authentic national football but from now on we were only allowed to sing in Romanian our response was you want folklore you'll have folklore is there a folklore however the folklore was combined with rock and the songs had a strong Robin Hood theme [Applause] [Applause] you know kudos marentina different for you we were angry young men and rock music was our way of expressing our feelings but as we sang in archaic Romanian they couldn't compare us with Western bands and accused us of importing foreign influence investors ponikvar team in Portland Lancer normally the police would confiscate the ID of any teenager with long hair and only return it when he got his hair cut but Nikhil found a way around this focus until this day I can't understand how I acquired such a privileged status when my band members had their IDs confiscated I used to intervene I'd go to the police station and have a row with the cops the result was always the same they'd hand over the IDs and our guys hair stayed long but someone's got the alum Bolivian Kovich seemed to enjoy some sort of protection from higher-up but it didn't last Konoe kielbasa sip symbolism the chip to make sure there was no fighting and the people wouldn't shout forbidden slogans the security at his soldiers and police mingled with the audience there were policemen with dogs outside the stadium as well that all this intimidated the audience and ensure that they showed their appreciation only by applauding applause soon the security were threatening Kovach young pussy and I was warned you're in great danger because it was so easy to end up in a madhouse tied to a bed with them saying he was taking drugs Kovach took the hint at great risk he hid his band in loudspeaker boxes and smuggled them out of Romania Vasily Paris Keith a working-class man from the town of pleasure was one of the very few who challenged Ceausescu openly nothing could stop him in 1971 he sent a list of proposals to the party leadership and to the union's of which he was a member are chilling with Frazetta those 11 proposals stipulated precisely the democratic rights and freedoms that are enjoyed today by the Romanian trade unions the response of the security was a series of beatings in secluded places like this forest near his home they beat me they tortured me they hit my cells with a rubber stick they hit my face and my stomach with their fists and they hit me on the head with bags filled with sand for seven days and seven nights without water and food this didn't stop palace key fighting for union rights after being attacked again this time on the staircase outside is flat he got himself photograph to meet early afterwards but the worst thing that happened to him was being put in psychiatric hospitals three times even though he was perfectly sane Ceausescu not even shot a Swiss canoe my own I own a boom what Ceausescu had declared that only a married man could disagree with the grand achievements of socialism she doctor thought to exist the woman car and if there were people who disagreed then they were man just a Cinnabon she Ventura stabbed him and the straightjacket who was awaiting them pragati Turpin through a Tara Steve is one of the few victims of the regime who ever got to confront some of his tormentors after the Revolution he went back to one of the hospitals where he'd been detained there he met the hospital's former chief psychiatrist dr. Eric arrastia dr. Christian insisted the paraskiv was mentally ill but admitted that the hospital had been used by the regime to isolate troublemakers never admitted one after a point about English their salteena so there are seven through their system other chakras the car you know for now no one palace gives original admission files stated that he suffered from paranoia the symptoms included publicizing a series of irresponsible complaints against the authorities at home and abroad palace Kiev says his dignity was destroyed in the hospitals she I see prefer earth safe usually they cut you one I would rather have been tried in court and sentenced to years in prison than have my dignity destroyed cope with a query Betsy taught my course that was the intention of the security they wanted to convince my workmates that I was not sane and that they should ignore ideas about free trade unions and democratic rights if anyone was suffering from paranoia it was Josh yes good not just about opposition at home but also about travelling abroad as his foreign minister stefan andre recalls ill agility see what a Roman colony still allows us as a rule he didn't eat it official dinners on foreign trips she leave the table Kotaro love letter said he had his meals at the Embassy prepared by his own cooking least he was accompanied by a chemist who was in charge among other things of destroying his excrement so that nobody could examine it to check the state of his health Sophia I'm mr. Katya when are Schieffelin cos samosa what a deal Jim wall RA Colonel Dimitri Berlin at the security was Jessica's chief bodyguard Vistal irrespective a them wound up with she never if during a visit he'd shake hands with a foreigner particularly if he was from the third world there was always in his entourage either an officer or somebody from the food safety agency who had a medical kit containing tissues dipped in alcohol or Samedi kala AZ star of Shelby chili and B button and he'd be given one of them to wipe his hands she said ja ja rescues suspicion of foreigners meant that the security had to take a close look at anyone who travelled abroad [Applause] as senior party member Joe pop discovered after he returned from an official trip to New York the martini shaker she cheese could have a nice inside when we returned to Romania the security at a suspected that we'd been recruited as American spies even though I was a director working for the Department of International Relations I was suspended and forbidden to go abroad I will suspend that she me sainted survive little stay with that but Joe was cleared his career prospered and he and Nadia were able to enjoy the slight increase in living standards of the late 60s and early 70s laughs car ass estava look here is our little girl again and our Doris estava it was good now the pops could easily get to Nadia's parents in the town of Togo Vista and escape from the ever-present surveillance in Bucharest family was where we felt safe place one could take refuge in without fear of being listened to or sneaked on neighbors were nosy sometimes but Joe is even watched at his in-laws it turned out that the local security boss knew his mother he told her if you're under the impression that we don't know what your son-in-law does when he's in togo wish to think again lucky for him he's okay we can't hold anything against him but we know everything so they're kept under surveillance all the time well actually the pops did find some escape from being watched at the seaside it wasn't crowded it's one of the most beautiful places that I've ever been to we had so much freedom for the children it wasn't luxurious in other places but it was very pleasant perhaps the most unexpected targets of the security were the charge SQ children all the more so when we consider who authorized the surveillance how for said madam I sort of pushed my mom answer me so profit is it the noise that's copied my mother asked the security I hate to keep an eye on us take subject this might have been from a misguided sense of love but whatever it was it was excessive the security couldn't touch us but the information they gave our mother created a lot of problems for us this bullet means cell aging woman that pretty miss telephone please see someone one day I received a call asking where's OHS coup de la dispatch alot i reported and then got another call saying that i was to go and fetch comrade Elena don't have any thought about the Machine I went to the residence she got into the car and we went to the her Astro Park in order for her to see what Zoya was doing in the park with her boyfriend better a Roman Catholic I was what she saw from the car that they were walking holding hands well the boyfriend would have his arm around her waist or around her shoulders we stayed for about 15 minutes I'm statute that was it you cheesebridge amino day Elena was too for Sawyer to end two of her relationships the security kept close tabs on sun niku as well Elena and Nikolai did not approve of the hedonistic lifestyle Nick who enjoyed with his sweetheart danke Musial in their determination to stop the marrying Nikolai even broke his own law I discipline gusset Oh Brittany yeah he ended Niko's long relationship with danke Mozilla or father fatale nucleus kun Raziel he went so far as to force her to have an abortion he took the child out of her without her parent's approval and without her approval forever it was illegal of course for for a boss someone to a mere I did not Nikolai and Elena wanted niku to go into politics and lined up a budding youth leader for him Pollyanna crisps Tesco nakooma Rita very reluctantly the purchase is not the miku-chan terrifically after he signed the marriage certificate Nico said to Pollyanna now go and live with my mother Obama she should shag you because she chose you Hollis few ordinary people could escape the endless surveillance and interference but Daniela drag each did manage to create something like an alternative life after she and her husband was sacked for refusing to translate some government propaganda she set up a kindergarten I have this private English teaching kindergarten in my own apartment I could make a living I could do what I wanted I spoke English with the kids I lived in a different world I created a world that was different most people let's say survived communists by listening to Radio Free Europe by having an underground abortion provision Network we would sit together in the kitchen must must often drinking beer eating sunflower seeds and talking against the government and that helped us you know exercise maybe in a way ourselves and survived communists men even laugh about it the dreadfulness of everyday life provided rich material for one student comedy group they filmed this spoof New Year's broadcast by Romanian TV for their private amusement but before any public performances all their sketches had to be approved by the censors then it reached the height of stupidity when the Ministry of Culture and communist education my memory is not betraying me and this was the actual name and his you do list of forbidden words these words weren't allowed on stage in shows on TV and newspapers anywhere else yes newspapers to these words one forbidden word was Dalek the censors assumed that anyone who used the word must be an enemy of the working class one of the jokes was that as we couldn't say the word dollar we claimed we had bought a piece of machinery with rubles the censors were outraged by this as well and wrote on our script any other currency and we said exactly that we bought this piece of machinery for 300 any other currency the audience burst into hysterical laughter it was funnier than any other word we could have used because the student audience gotten down to the fact that we've been censored the censor a really nice guy didn't want to impose on us the alternative to the word dollar and so he allowed us to choose any other currency as long as it wasn't the dollar you never know my dollars some of you but we took it literally I said it cost 300 any other currency people roared with laughter after 20 years in power charge sq started planning his legacy so in 1985 he and Elena signed a document proclaiming their decision to adorn Bucharest with a new government center the document was buried in the Foundation's the project meant knocking down a quarter of the old city 40,000 homes were demolished there was no consultation and no appeal these pictures were secretly taken by someone living on the edge of the destruction zone sent a piece of chess cues new bucharest was to be a palace of the people second only in size to the Pentagon [Applause] Josh's co-op dad Chow asked you inspected his building sites every Saturday morning I think there is that absolutely Butchie rush on teared she charged injured was justice it was preparing for these visits was quite exhausting he had enormous vitality no detail was too insignificant he required a precise explanation about everything we did he was very abrupt for the construction workers this was exhausting and dangerous one worker had to disguise his identity when he spoke to an undercover Western reporter while Ceausescu was still in power thangka he has the legal authority well another how we gonna not be Mukalla gotten and all goes to Claire let me get this to Bob Dole's may not even be better fast yes hazard humble heart hula Pilates and I remember hard make get refocused atomo gotta to be um abolish activity Estevan old man Josh askew also starts to knock down Romanian villages and move the inhabitants to new towns this will both clear more land for agriculture and tighten his stranglehold on the peasants the story of how lenita and marine sarah screws house was demolished is depressingly typical the method used was to dig a large hole and to bulldoze the house with all its belongings into it well part of the we took anything we could grab quickly did you resist if we had they'd have taken us to the militia station and beaten us some resisted and they got beaten up so people just shut up they were allocated a flat in a new block it had no doors windows running water or heating when I reach the stairs my knees were shaking coming from a beautiful house to these ruins no door no window nothing debris everywhere everything a disaster many people who lost their homes were traumatized at the same time as thousands were losing their homes the regime of shortages that Ceausescu was inflicting on his subjects was making him more and more unpopular food became very scarce Ceausescu was exporting romanian food to pay off the country's huge foreign debts pigs trotters were known as Patriots as they were the only parts of the pig which didn't leave the country Paraskeva and marianne neo goo were typical of the thousands of peasants who moved to towns to get work for them the shortages were an even bigger problem because they didn't have a residence permit this meant they weren't eligible for food coupons if somebody offered me meat some lard or chickens legs and throats I never refused even colleagues at work gave me food because they knew I had three children and I had nothing to feed them not just a loopy promise because they had no residence permit they weren't eligible for a government flat either they had to rent privately this leaking Shack which had no bathroom laboratory for central heating during the 1980s there were more and more power cuts and the news got very cold those with central heating did not fare much better as the periods when it was on grew ever shorter and even then the temperature was never about twelve Celsius all this was a major source of dissatisfaction in December 1989 revolution broke out there was a series of sporadic disorganized but deadly encounters in Bucharest and other cities in the middle of this mayhem Paris Kiva's husband went missing she and the children Mari you know I had a younger daughter in my arms and the older one was walking in front of me if she'd been one step further away she would have been hit by a bullet so then we make a doodie Barbara but you couldn't see anybody you looked around for snipers but bullets came from the most unexpected directions they said this wound is she doing it if identical over now but the revolution got a decisive boost when the army changed science the chess Jews were captured [Applause] on Christmas Day they were brought to trial he took his hat off and smooth his hair down I couldn't recognize him he was looking around frightened paratroopa Yunel boy who first took the Chester's to this room from a medical examination unlike Nicolae Ceausescu who smelled normally like somebody who takes care of himself she smelled embarrassingly bad that she behaved normally during the trial there was considerable concern that forces sympathetic to the old regime might try and rescue the church s Jews the trio but did she but I was in the courtroom and under orders to execute them if that happened even at the risk of shooting other people she carries her floral the church s Jews were accused of killing thousands of people during the revolution and in the years before this was a show trial after 90 minutes it ended with the charge excuse being sentenced to death Oh II thought the Salish I pinched our Maserati everybody went out of the courtroom and I was left to learn which instrument yeah my left hand and colonel entered the room and ordered me to take them out separately and shoot them but they said no they wanted to die together [Applause] yeah punch a pillow then I asked the officers to grant them their last wish to be shot together Sophia Bush got some promise [Applause] Lahm alternate ecology automation to deploy some measure de chasse posh by older by men to set the machine guns on automatic fire to make sure he wouldn't miss Sara Tamra Jetta I find 29 cartridges in three rounds the first one hit Nikolaj in the knees and the second in his chest and the third round hit Elena charge Chesky you know my charge any men because the two paratroopers with him panicked and was slow to open fire boy who believes it was his shots which killed Nicolai and Elena Radhika my Cisco Yoshiko Ilse he got exactly what he deserved pretty much I still think that well not just I put it a shovel the chest whose death like their life was a spectacle the men who had taken over needed to show that they were now in charge I saw the bad dead bodies on television and I saw the the same scene over and over again and it was like we couldn't get enough of it you know to see that to make sure that it was happening that they were really dead Parris Kiva's husband Marianne died in the revolution this is what he said the last time he left home I just can't party like a buckle morning even if you were to die he still would have no regrets of his children to have a better life the happy and I a more comfortable life I asked not to be tormented like we were all together some 1114 people were killed and over 3,000 injured during the revolution one legacy of the church sq years is the monster palace which now completed dominates Bucharest less quantifiable is the effect of the dictators on the minds and self-respect of Romanians who lived under the Chester shadow for nearly 25 years the end of communism across Eastern Europe the sudden unexpected and greeted with great enthusiasm but what has replaced it has not always been universally welcoming as Karl Marx the founder of communism once said men make their own history but they do not make it as they choose




Comments
  1. Entitled Gen Xers and Boomers bitch about not being able to fuck around as much as they'd like cause they can't get abortions. Just get married and have kids. Jesus, stop acting like gigolos and whores and just start a family.

  2. Romanian Communism wasn't real. it was a mix of authoritarianism, nationalism, cult of personality, and Stalinism.

    The corporatacracy of Capitalism is a lie.

  3. I am a Romanian. My father lived in the communism, and he saw the Revolution live. There was total chaos: soldiers shooting at innocent people, tanks killing people, children, women, man. Generals committing suicide, total chaos.

  4. Hai k acu phteti omorii copii pe banda si am ajuns mai rau k somalezi o sa va iasa sexul prin ureki curvelor ucigase

  5. Here in Britain it's even worse we have the gchq watching the activity and collecting information of every single human beings computer phone and now smart tv which translates as stupid sheep tv but they call it smart to trick you into buying it so they have more suivallence and control over each individual.here we have a fascist/cimmunist state which is only under the ILLUSION of democracy, reputation is the greatest for of propaganda and there constantly telling us how free we are when really anyone who tells the truth is in great danger and any scientist inventing free energy is killed also our criminal establishment created and funded Isis to cause chaos in Middle East so our elite can take over them regions and control everyone and implement a one world governement, all this fake bombings a psychological operations I was shocked myself but look at evidence don't believe me look for yourself and certainly don't believe media they area branch of establishment designed to hypnotise and brainwsy

  6. It's coming back when the one world government is implemented believe me, were run by the most heinous criminals that ever lived I call them Marxist capitalists, Rothschild crime family

  7. The poisonous cherry on top of the morbid cake … Communism was installed illegally in Romania in the first place. This for those that still have doubts on weather romanians did the right thing, there is your answer.

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