Dosarul Revolutiei: Rechizitoriul despre Sibiu, 20 decembrie 1989, ROMBAC-ul, si DIA (I)

The indictment drawn up by military prosecutors in the so-called Revolution File would have us believe that the only controversy surrounding the transport of forces from Bucharest Otopeni to Sibiu on 20 December 1989 is a binary one of were DIA (Army’s Intelligence unit) personnel on the flight or not?  As if there had never been any accusations, any debate on the identity of the forces on the plane?  This may seem trivial but it is in fact an important test case, that the Procuracy should have gotten right.  They didn’t even have to decide which forces were on the plane.  All they had to do, to be credible and straighforward, was to say, there is controversy surrounding there identity:  were they M.I. (Securitate, USLA), DIA, Ceausescu’s “special troops,” or even (as absurd as it gets) GRU/KGB/Soviet troops.  But no.  The prosecutors circumscribe the question to were there DIA (thus Army) personnel on the plane or not…there are no other options posited.  And that is not by accident, and yes, it stinks.

This is what the indictment says on page 65.

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Here in episode 1, I ask:  from where did the accusation and argument that they were DIA come in the first place?  Because in December 1989 and immediately after, no one, absolutely no one, raised this suspicion or hypothesis.

While there were accusations in 1990 that the DIA were the “terrorists” of post 22 December, or had created a diversion to make it appear there were “Securitate terrorists,” the specific mention of the ROMBAC from Bucharest to Sibiu on 20 December was not mentioned.

Here, however, in issue on nr. 32 in the fall 1990 of the Cluj anti-Front, anti-government weekly NU, we find an interview taken by Liviu Man (!) and Eugen Popescu with an anonymous Military Counterintelligence Colonel.  Although the article starts with the source as saying that DIA was the number one enemy of Military Counterintelligence, conveniently the fact that this CI-ist was in fact a member of Directorate IV of the Securitate (Military Counterintelligence) is swept under the rug and thus no skepticism about the CI-ist’s motives are raised.

Un Colonel din Contrainfortiile Militare Vrea Adevarul:  Generalii Guse si Directia de Informatii a Armatei

Despre D.I.A. stiu multe…A doau oara am auzit de un avion care a decolat din Bucuresti de pe Aeroportul Otopeni si nu Baneasa cum era normal, spre Sibiu, avion in care erau doar sapte sibieni si in rest peste 50 de barbati cu valize (?) asematoare, civili, dar cu domiciliu fals:  asa am inteles din depozitia col. Rotariu, inspector sef la Sibiu [la Inspectoratul MI!].

image-75

Not unsurprisingly, who later in 1994 fleshes out the DIA Sibiu Rombac hypothesis, but another former Securitate CI-ist Valentin Raiha, Revolutia Romana si Jocul Serviciilor Secrete (Baia Mare:  Euxinus-Impex, 1994)

…nu trebuie s conconcluzionam ca pasagerii Rombac-ului ar cam trebiu cautati in gradina la D.I.A.?

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While the origins and roots of the DIA hypothesis may have escaped the military prosecutors who drew up the indictment, other military officials and researchers were more observant, as the following makes clear (note the mention of Iulian Rotariu, cited by the first C.I.-ist above…):

In lucrarea “Lovitura de stat a confiscat Revolutia Romana”, Serban Sandulescu, membru al Comisiei Senatoriale, sustine ideea ca avionul ROMBAC a adus la Sibiu nu uslasi, ci luptatori ai Directiei Informatii a Armatei, argumentand aceasta afirmatie, in principal, cu declaratiile facute de elevi ai U.M. 01512, care, in seara zilei de 20 decembrie 1989, i-au intrebat pe cei adusi in unitate de unde sunt, acestia raspunzand ca sunt de la D.I.A.  Fara a cita alte detalii sau nume de oameni, Serban Sandulescu precizeaza ca aceste fapte i-au fost relatate de un redactor de la ziarul “Tribuna” din Sibiu, care urma sa scrie o carte.  Pentru sustinerea ipotezei sale adauga “confirmarea obtinuta personal de la un cadru al S.R.I.”, a carui identitate este invaluita in aceleasi anonimat.

Varianta ca in ROMBAC au fost adusi la Sibiu luptatori ai D.I.A. este sustinuta in cartea “Recurs” si de Iulian Rotariu, fost inspector-sef la Inspector-sef la Inspectoratul M.I. Sibiu.  Pasagerii avionului–sustine acesta–“nu au apartinut Ministerul de Interne.  Din surse care au tinut sa-si pastreze anonimatul, cel circa 80 de pasageri ar fi fost cazati la U.M. 01512 Sibiu, unde au intrat pe poarta 2 si nu pe cea principala.  Daca ar fi fost de la M.I. ar fi fost identificati.  Mai degraba au facut parte din trupele de cercetare-diversiune subordonate D.I.A.”.

Interesant de retinut este faptul ca varianta D.I.A. este sustinuta, in diferite formule, doar de foste cadre ale M.I., interesate, se pare, sa creeze aceasta diversiune….

Pararea autorilor acestui studiu este ca primele concluzii ale Procuraturii, potrivit carora cu avionul ROMBAC a fost trimis la Sibiu un destasament din U.S.L.A., sunt cel mai aproape de adevar.  Primul personaj la care Elena Ceausescu putea sa intervina era Postelnicu, caruia ii era subordonata U.S.L.A.  Faptul ca s-a apelat, pentru transportul detasamentului, la o cursa TAROM este inca un argument ca in componenta sa nu erau militari subordonati M.Ap.N., armata avand la dispozitie, pentru transport, avioane militare [nota mea:  iata cum au fost transportati cadrele D.I.A. spre Timisoara pe 18 decembrie, cu un avion militar AN 24/26]….

 

(mai sus) Armata romana in revolutia din decembrie 1989 (doua editii, 1994, 1998)–atentie la discutie despre Sandulescu si Rotariu

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Initial Observations on Rechizitoriul din Dosarul Revolutiei

The PDF of the 198 page document presented by prosecutors can be found here and here.

https://cdn.g4media.ro/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/Extras-rechizitoriu-Dosarul-Revolu%C8%9Biei.pdf

https://media.stiripesurse.ro/other/201904/media-155558831721544200.pdf

A few overarching comments.  To some extent, one can say, that this is the consummation of the revenge of the former Securitate and, from the grave, Nicolae Ceausescu.  The role of the Securitate gradually diminishes from the discussion of the repression in Timisoara through the repression in Bucharest and elsewhere on 21-22 December to the point that is disappears after 22 December as an actor with any responsibility.  This is not a “mistaken impression” as some of the blind defenders of the procuracy have advocated, it comes through as one reads the 198 page rechizitoriu.  I will unpack the charges and supporting material in the coming days and weeks, but at this point a first cut of sorts highlighting the combination of arrogance and ignorance that this document puts forward.  Do they really think, nobody has been paying attention these past three decades?!  (for now, I will attach the links of others, for the most part, below, to demonstrate my points)

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  1. This is rich indeed.  As if the only or first or main accusation was that those forces who were transported to Sibiu on the night of 20 December 1989 were from the Army, DIA?  NO MENTION WHATSOEVER OF THE INITIAL ACCUSATIONS THAT THEY WERE FROM THE SECURITATE’S USLA, OF THE CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN NICU CEAUSESCU, TUDOR POSTELNICU, NICU SILVESTRU, ETC.

https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/sibiu-20-22-december-nicu-ceausescu-the-usla-poisoned-water-and-dr-heyndrickxs-toxicology-report/

https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/interesant-de-retinut-este-faptul-ca-varianta-d-i-a-este-sustinuta-in-diferite-formule-doar-de-foste-cadre-ale-m-i-interesate-se-pare-sa-creeze-aceasta-diversiune/

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2. The prosecutors focus on Gl. Lt. Nicolae Eftimescu as the “mastermind” of the Army’s diversion. Why?  Because they are subtly pushing the KGB (more like GRU) Russian filosovietic conspiracy theory, with him acting in cahoots with Nicolae Militaru…hmmm, where did this idea come from?  Here are the results of some searches from the internet…Liviu Tit Domsa si Victor Lungu, si Craciun si Delcea…
https://gazetadecluj.ro/in-decembrie-1989-dia-manipula-armata-romana-2/

https://adevarul.ro/news/eveniment/cum-reactivat-militaru-divizia-kgb-condus-romania-1_50ad498a7c42d5a663924cb0/index.html

The allegations regarding the Military Technical Academy are particularly unfair/ridiculous.

https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/2009/05/15/sediul-m-ap-n-22-23-decembrie-1989-sosirea-detasamentului-de-studenti-din-academia-militara-facultatea-tehnica/

https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/maior-mihai-floca-la-spitalul-militar-central-lupta-pentru-viata-armata-poporului-nr-3-17-ianuarie-1990-p-4/

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3. The beginning/end of this is about the famous Defense Ministry incident…the prosecutors clearly parrot the former Securitate’s revisionist historiography:

https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/usla-bula-trosca-militaru-adevarul-reloaded/

as for the idea, that ONLY the Defense Ministry controlled communications or communicated after 22 December…where does one start with this bold faced lie?…

https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/bulgaria-si-ungaria-despre-tintele-aeriene-deasupra-teritoriului-lor-in-decembrie-1989/

https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/da-dar-dv-acum-i-ati-bagat-pe-toti-in-aceeasi-tabara-dar-nu-au-fost-toti-in-aceeasi-tabara-asta-e-necazul/

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4. Rather incredibly, they still have not amended the easily disprovable stupidities about Rus, the repainting of the helicopters, and their missions in Bucharest…I long ago explored this based on the revelations/recounting of those who prepared and flew the helicopters from the Boteni base…

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/14/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iii-the-case-of-general-iosif-rus/

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5. Oh, the irony of this, given the Militaru-Eftimescu line of the prosecutors…the most likely source of this…Valentin Vasilescu…
https://www.rumaniamilitary.ro/razboiul-radio-electronic-din-1989-1

http://amateescu51.blogspot.com/2015/01/cacealmaua-romaneasca-1989.html

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(TO BE CONTINUED…FURTHER BROKEN DOWN, AS TIME ALLOWS…THANK YOU FOR YOUR READERSHIP AND ATTENTION!)

 

Observations on the Military Prosecutors’ Recent Communiques on the Status of Investigations into December 1989 (V, the Case of Ion Iliescu)

 

For previous episodes in this series, please see:

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/08/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-i/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/11/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-ii/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/14/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iii-the-case-of-general-iosif-rus/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/17/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iv-the-case-of-teodor-brates-part-1/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/21/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iv-the-case-of-teodor-brates-part-2/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/02/03/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iv-the-case-of-teodor-brates-part-3/

(for recent use of my work, see Andrei Ursu, Mădălin Hodor, Roland O. Thomasson, „Cine a tras în noi după 22?”Studiu asupra vinovățiilor pentru victimele Revoluției Române din decembrie 1989)

 


To say that the accusations against Ion Iliescu by the military prosecutors are ridiculous and beyond unfair is an understatement.  Iliescu has many actions to answer for, both before and after December 1989, but that does not make him automatically guilty for what happened in December 1989.  Accusing somebody of something they did not do and are not guilty of is not justice.

Below the accusations of the military prosecutors and their reception inside and outside Romania.  Following that several important points in regard to Iliescu’s actions, frequently citing full passages of his own words (something rarely done inside Romanian and by Romanian emigres who either misremember, misquote, or cherry-pick quotes out of context):

  1. In his evening speech on 22 December 1989 from the balcony of the Central Committee building, when Iliescu announced the capture of Nicolae Elena Ceausescu, he said explicitly that there would be a public trial.  (If Iliescu had intended to kill the Ceausescus from the very start–as so many assume or maintain–it is practically unimaginable–it would be incredibly stupid–to have promised the Romanian public a public trial).
  2. In a later intervention at the Television Station, Iliescu was quite explicit about those they believed were shooting:  special units of the Securitate shooting on behalf of Ceausescu.  However, if anything, his words suggest he appears to have overestimated the ease with which the forces that had joined the Revolution would be able to overcome this last gasp of resistance.
  3. As late as the 24th of December, Iliescu was resisting the counsel of other Front members to have the Ceausescus killed, with Gelu Voican Voiculescu later claiming he prevailed upon Iliescu by saing:  “Sir, do you want to end up like Allende?” 
  4. On the night of 24/25 December, Army General Nicolae Militaru ordered DIA Rear Admiral Stefan Dinu to deliver Nicolae Ceausescu his insulin which he had now been without for a substantial period, because they feared he might go into a diabetic shock and die.  This once again suggests that the killing of the Ceausescus was not something rushed into, an intention from the very beginning.

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Brought to book in Bucharest Romania’s ex-president, Ion Iliescu, goes on trial

Romanians hope to learn what really happened during the revolution

TO THIS day, Romanians remain baffled by what actually happened during the violent spasm which rid the country of its communist dictator in December 1989. Seeking to give them a definitive answer, on April 17th prosecutors indicted Ion Iliescu, the first post-communist president of the country, for crimes against humanity allegedly committed during the revolution he was instrumental in leading.

If the trial of the 88-year-old two-time president succeeds in settling the record that would be a fine thing. It probably will not happen, though. In the rest of eastern Europe, the end of communism was a mostly peaceful affair, but in Romania things were different. The revolution started in the western city of Timisoara, where dozens were shot. Nicolae Ceausescu, the communist dictator, then called a rally in Bucharest. But when, on television, people could be heard shouting, “Down with the dictator,” the game was up. He fled in a helicopter but was arrested, and executed alongside his wife on Christmas Day.

The drama of those days was, literally, indescribable. No one appeared to know what was happening. A few Ceausescu loyalists held out, and arms were distributed to civilians to resist mysterious “terrorists” who turned out not to exist [my note:  the author here does not appear to recognize the contradiction here:  the “Ceausescu loyalists” and the “terrorists” were one and the same, and indeed Iliescu famously said they were “few in number”]. Much of the shooting was done by units of the security forces and military firing at each other. Mr Iliescu, who has been indicted along with three others, has always maintained that there was no secret plan. He and others simply stepped in to fill the power vacuum, he says. The indictment, however, accuses them of creating “diversions”: that is, giving contradictory orders to different units which inevitably led to people being killed.

Mr Iliescu is a divisive figure. Detractors despise him for his communist past and for, as they believe, hijacking the revolution. Former communists did prosper after the revolution; but that was true from Prague to Vladivostok. The former president is already on trial for his alleged role in orchestrating violence committed by miners he called to come and crush anti-government protests in Bucharest in June 1990, a far less murky case.

Since the indictment Mr Iliescu has said nothing. But on April 13th he wrote on his blog that he was proud of what he did, that it was ridiculous to pretend that democracy and its institutions should have been established the second the Ceausescus fled, and that he is being made a scapegoat. Many victims’ families will be relieved when he goes on trial, as they have never had clear answers as to why their loved ones died. Valentina Radu, aged 85, a retired teacher, said: “He may not go to jail, but history has to know the truth about Iliescu and the revolution.” After so many years, however, it probably won’t be the whole truth, or even wholly true.

This article appeared in the Europe section of the print edition under the headline “Trying the president”

Stadiu Dosarul Revoluţiei

                                                                                           21  decembrie 2018

COMUNICAT

 

Biroul de informare şi relaţii publice din cadrul Parchetului de pe lângă Înalta Curte de Casaţie şi Justiţie, urmare a comunicatelor din datele de 8 februarie 2017, 18 decembrie 2017, 2 aprilie 2018 și 17 aprilie 2018, este abilitat să aducă la cunoștința opiniei publice următoarele:

Prin ordonanţa din 18.12.2018, procurorii din cadrul Secției parchetelor militare a Parchetului de pe lângă Înalta Curte de Casație și Justiție, în dosarul penal intitulat generic „Revoluţia Română din decembrie 1989”, au dispus punerea în mişcare a acţiunii penale faţă de inculpaţii  Ion Iliescu (membru și președinte al C.F.S.N.), Gelu Voican Voiculescu (membru C.F.S.N. și fost vice prim-ministru al Guvernului României), Iosif Rus (fost comandant al Aviației Militare) și Emil (Cico) Dumitrescu (fost membru CFSN), sub aspectul săvârșirii infracțiunilor contra umanităţii  prev. de art. 439 lit. a, g, i şi k C.p.

Cercetările au vizat stabilirea situației de fapt în ceea ce privește exercitarea directă a prerogativelor puterii de stat și a luării deciziilor  cu caracter politic și militar de către grupul de decizie politico-militară al Consiliului Frontului Salvării Naționale ( C.F.S.N.), format din Ion Iliescu, Silviu Brucan, general locotenent Victor Atanasie Stănculescu, general maior(r) Nicolae Militaru (reactivat ulterior, înaintat în grad militar și numit ministru al apărării) și Gelu Voican Voiculescu.

Totodată, aceste diversiuni şi dezinformări ar fi creat condiţiile condamnării şi execuţiei cuplului prezidenţial Ceauşescu printr-un proces penal simulat.

Probatoriul administrat în cauză relevă că inculpaţii Ion Iliescu şi Gelu Voican Voiculescu ar fi dezinformat în mod direct prin apariţiile televizate şi emiterea de comunicate de presă (contribuind astfel la instaurarea unei psihoze generalizate a terorismului), ar fi participat la dezinformarea şi diversiunea exercitate pentru executarea cuplului Ceauşescu şi ar fi acceptat şi asumat politic acte diversioniste comise de unele cadre cu funcţii de conducere din M.Ap.N., fără a interveni pentru stoparea lor.

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https://revista22.ro/70270397/dosarul-revoluiei-cerere-de-aviz-pentru-inculparea-lui-iliescu-roman-i-voican-voiculescu.html

Iata cum au reactionat intelectuali romani de mare rang…

Criminalii: Au crezut că pot să scape. Poate o mai cred si acum. Dar nu vor scăpa, nici in mormânt…

(THE CRIMINALS:  They thought they could escape.  Perhaps they still think they can even now.  But they won’t escape, not even in the grave…)

g4media.ro

https://www.digi24.ro/stiri/actualitate/justitie/cererea-parchetului-privindu-i-pe-iliescu-roman-si-voican-voiculescu-stelian-tanase-dar-de-ce-doar-trei-906407?utm_source=Sharefb

“Dar de ce doar trei? Pentru că grupul era mult mai mare”, a întrebat retoric, la Digi24 istoricul Stelian Tănase.
„Dar de ce doar trei? Pentru că grupul era mult mai mare. Avem şi nişte militari acolo şi au dispărut misterios, dar sunt oameni care au fost în echipă şi sunt în viaţă. E suficient să luăm nişte imagini filmate în clădirea CC, să le vedem figurile, să le identificăm şi trebuie implicate într-un fel sau altul. (…)

https://revista22.ro/70270484/ne-nving.html

 

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1) On the evening of 22 December 1989, in the following video (approx. min 2:58-3:30 below) , as broadcast live on Romanian Television at the time, Ion Iliescu announced clearly that Nicolae Ceausescu “va fi arestat, supus judecatii publice” or “will be arrested and subjected to a public trial.”  It has to be pointed out that if Iliescu and company indeed truly planned to execute the Ceausescus ahead of time, it would have been monumentally stupid to make a public promise about a public trial that could then be hurled at them for years to come after the secret trial and execution of the Ceausescus as evidence of their illegitimacy to rule.
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Transcript from Revolutia Romana in Direct (1990), pp. 84-85.

Romanians and foreigners are, of course, unlikely to find this in the flowery, superficial, and heavily ideological narratives about the trial and execution of Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu that are available to them on the Internet:  see, for example, http://www.contributors.ro/cultura/anatomia-unei-inscenari-judiciare-ultimele-ore-ale-cuplului-ceausescu/

2)

Ion Iliescu (TVR 22.12.1989): “…o grupă din unităţile securităţii, unitate special pregătită ca să-l apere pe Ceauşescu , să apere sediul lui, ascuns undeva prin subsoluri, prin nişte tuneluri pe care el şi le-a construit şi care comunicau între sedii şi Palatul Republicii, a reuşit să se refugieze şi, când era Piaţa plină de lume, aşa cum aţi văzut, au început să tragă asupra cetăţenilor şi asupra sediului Comitetului Central…”

postat de catre CARMENDORO

Liza Kratochwill (gasit de UA):  http://www.cercetare-memorialulrevolutiei1989.ro/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/A%C5%A3i-min%C5%A3it-poporul-cu-televizorul.pdf?fbclid=IwAR3kp8bOkvuiuGYZ0g2h3St80Ky9a3b7pz19H9Cd3Aw40ArRz6W5ed0-1Uc

Teodor Brateş (crainic):
–Avem, din nou, legătura cu studioul, pentru a vă informa că Ion
Iliescu este aici, este viu. Au fost zvonuri în legătură cu arestarea lui. Şi lucruri mai rele s-au spus în legătură cu soarta dumnealui. Este viu, este aici, lângă noi, să-l ascultăm.
Ion Iliescu:
Nu cu arestarea, ci problema se pune cu totul altfel. Adică, aşa cum aţi văzut, ne-am întâlnit în faţa sediului Comitetului Central, am comunicat cu oamenii din piaţă, urma să constituim un nucleu organizatoric, pentru că ceea ce constituie tragedia soartei noastre astăzi, tragedia pe care a lăsat-o în urmă acest regim bezmetic al dictatorului Ceauşescu, este acest vacuum de putere care s-a creat. Noi trebuie să depăşim acest moment dificil. Al vacuumului de putere. Fără o putere organizată nu se pot rezolva problemele grave cu care se confruntă poporul în ţară. Este însufleţitoare toată această atmosferă de entuziasm, de dăruire, euforia acestei eliberări de un regim bezmetic, care n-a cunoscut scrupule. Care a mers la crimele cele mai odioase. În momentul în care ne constituiam, ne organizam în sediul Comitetului Central, care fusese ocupat de forţe patriotice, o grupă din unităţile securităţii, unitate special pregătită ca să-l apere pe Ceauşescu, să apere sediul lui, ascuns undeva prin subsoluri, prin nişte tuneluri pe care el şi le-a construit şi care comunicau între sedii şi Palatul Republicii, a reuşit să se refugieze şi, când era Piaţa plină de lume, aşa cum aţi văzut, au început să tragă asupra cetăţenilor şi asupra sediului Comitetului Central, unde se aflau şi se află Nuţă [sic. nucleul?], oameni de bine,  reprezentanţi ai populaţiei, care se constituiau în această structură nouă a puterii. Este o ultimă zvârcolire a acestei fiare încolţite, care loveşte până şi înainte de moarte şi care a reuşit…
Teodor Brateş:
Da, o să arătăm nişte fotografii…
Ion Iliescu:
… să producă noi tragedii, noi victime, pe altarul luptei pentru eliberare naţională.
Ceea ce vreau să spun acum, înainte de a reveni cu o chestiune mai completă, pentru că ne–am aflat în faza redactării unui document, o chemare a Consiliului Frontului Salvării Naţionale, pe care o să–l dăm citire pe postul de televiziune şi n–am reuşit să realizăm acest lucru, deci am să solicit încă câteva minute pentru câţiva reprezentanţi ai acestui nucleu. Până atunci, vreau să fac apel, în primul rând, la cei care se află în faţa sediului Comitetului Central. Încă nu a fost lichidat nucleul acesta de bezmetici. Aşa cum aţi văzut, încă se trage. Acum însă situaţia s–a schimbat. Raportul de forţe s–a schimbat. Sunt unităţi militare care, în general, au pus stăpânire pe situaţie, dar trebuie lichidat acest nucleu de sinucigaşi. De aceea apelăm la toţi cetăţenii ca să elibereze piaţa şi zona din jurul Palatului şi a sediului, ca să poată pătrunde armata. Cu…ăăă…. sunt unităţi blindate… ăăă, formaţiuni blindate, formaţiuni speciale care vin să cureţe…ăăă… această zonă de acest nucleu.
Teodor Brateş:
–Da, mă iertaţi că vă întrerup!…
Ion Iliescu:
–Da, poftim!
Teodor Brateş:
–Facem un apel către cadrele medicale, sunt răniţi în Piaţa Palatului! Să se ducă
acolo cu salvările, să–i salveze pe oameni cât mai repede! Şi în sediul Comitetului Central sunt răniţi.
Ion Iliescu:
–Din partea consiliului, se află în sediul Comitetului Central generalul Guşă, şeful
Marelui Stat Major, împreună cu o grupă şi de militari, şi de civili şi în sediu trebuie făcută ordine, pentru c–au pătruns foarte mulţi oameni şi împiedică chiar rezolvar
ea problemelor operative. Deci trebuie să ieşim din faza asta de euforie, de entuziasm general, şi să căutăm să ne organizăm, cu structurile care să acţioneze pentru aceste probleme. Rugăm toate autorităţile locale, în toate centrele judeţene unde pot să a
pară asemenea probleme, cetăţenii, împreună cu factorii militari, unităţile militare, cu oameni de bine din administraţia locală, să colaboreze, să conlucreze, cu sprijinul cetăţenilor, pentru a stăpâni situaţia şi a elimina toate aceste elemente.
Avem ştiri că soţii Ceauşescu sunt arestaţi, de asemenea o serie de alţi demnitari…
Teodor Brateş:
–Da, este o ştire acuma, că Nicu Ceauşescu ar fi fost văzut la Podul Băneasa,
într–o maşină ITB, îndreptându-se spre zona aceasta a Televiziunii. Rugăm pe toţi
cei care sunt în această zonă să fie atenţi, să nu scape!
Gelu Voican Voiculescu:
–Echipele de operare îşi fac foarte bine datoria. De–abia am putut noi să ajungem acuma.
Ion Iliescu:
–Bun! În general, cetăţenii au fost foarte ordonaţi, au răspuns conş
tiincios, în tot oraşul s–au creat filtre, baraje de control a circulaţiei. Este un lucru bun. Rugăm, pe mai departe, cetăţenii organizaţi în asemenea formaţiuni de autoapărare, de iniţiativă, să controleze şi să ajute la stabilirea ordinii în tot oraşul.
Noi o să ne adresăm, după aceea, că trebuie, totuşi, să facem să funcţioneze tot sistemul de stat. Adică ministere, unităţi administrative, administraţii locale, trebuie să asigure funcţionarea organismului social. Aprovizionarea populaţiei, alimentarea cu apă, cu energie, cu tot ce trebuie.
Neidentificat
–Să intre…?
Ion Iliescu:
–Nu, nu! Ne retragem ca să discutăm.
Neidentificat
–Să anunţaţi cetăţenii!
Neidentificat
–Da. Aşa cum am spus, urmează, peste circa jumătate de oră, să venim şi să ne
adresăm cu o chemare către cetăţenii ţării, din partea noii structuri a puterii.
Gelu Voican Voiculescu:
–Contralovitura nu a reuşit. Omul providenţial al momentului acesta
a stat tot timpul alături de comandament.
Neidentificat
–… în interior.
Neidentificat
–Bravo! Asta e foarte bine!
Teodor Brateş:
–Vă mai citim nişte ştiri.
Ion Iliescu:
–E o comunicare din partea formaţiilor militare care au fost în sediul Comitetului
Central, să ştie toate familiile că toţi cei care s–au aflat în sediul Comitetului Ce
ntral au scăpat cu viaţă.
Gelu Voican Voiculescu:
–Contralovitura nu a reuşit!
Ion Iliescu:
–Nu a reuşit contralovitura acestei unităţi de sinucigaşi şi de terorişti!

3) In January 1992, long after Gelu Voican Voiculescu had fallen afoul of Ion Iliescu and the former had ample room for resentment and payback, Voican Voiculescu told Adrian Paunescu in the pages of Totusi Iubirea that on the morning of 24 December 1989, it was he who prevailed upon Iliescu to change his opinion and consider the immediate execution–without public trial–of the Ceausescus:

Gelu Voican Voiculescu claims that he prevailed upon Ion Iliescu to consider the immediate execution of Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu only after the attacks of 23/24 December 1989, with the memorable phrase:  “Sir, do you want to end up like Allende?”  (cited in this following article from 2000:  https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/theories-of-collective-action-and-revolution-2000/  , see page 1088).

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4. Finally, efforts were made to keep Nicolae Ceausescu from slipping into a diabetic coma and potentially dying before the trial.  A cynic could say this was for appearances sake, that they wanted Nicolae Ceausescu healthy enough to stand trial and be sentenced, but it is evidence that they were still trying to keep him alive and coherent at that time.

The details of the delivery of insulin to the diabetic Nicolae Ceausescu on the night of 24-25 December 1989 so that he would not go into a state of diabetic shock/coma.

 

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Viorel Domenico, Ceausescu la Targoviste (1998), pp. 212-213

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Nicolae Militaru about the incident from Bacescu 1994 above, and Stefan Dinu (DIA) about it in his testimony before the senatorial commission in Sandulescu 1996 below:

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Observations on the Military Prosecutors’ Recent Communiques on the Status of Investigations into December 1989 (IV, the Case of Teodor Brates, part 3)

For previous episodes in this series, please see:

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/08/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-i/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/11/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-ii/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/14/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iii-the-case-of-general-iosif-rus/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/17/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iv-the-case-of-teodor-brates-part-1/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/21/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iv-the-case-of-teodor-brates-part-2/

(for recent use of my work, see Andrei Ursu, Mădălin Hodor, Roland O. Thomasson, „Cine a tras în noi după 22?”Studiu asupra vinovățiilor pentru victimele Revoluției Române din decembrie 1989)

Linked to the allegations of supposedly intentionally hyping the threat posed by the “terrorists” is the certitude with which many Romanians and Romanianists assert that TV personnel (especially Teodor Brates) intentionally spread rumors about the water being poisioned and the army running out of ammunition in Sibiu etc.–rumors that proved to be unsubstantiated. Here is what they likely remember:

“One moment, please…from Sibiu it has been communicated that the army no longer has ammunition and the Securitate troops continue to attack mili tary units….We want to inform you that in Sibiu, military units are urgently requesting help…We are constantly receiving communications…of course, we do not have the possibility to verify their authenticity…but we ask for your attention…It is said that the enemy elements, the securisti, have poisoned the water in Sibiu, in Timisoara…the water must be boiled before being consumed.” (from the transcript of 22 December 1989 in “Revolutia Romana in Direct” (Bucharest: 1990), pp. 47, 48, 51, quoted p. 324, Richard Andrew Hall, 1997, Ph.D. Dissertation, “Rewriting the Revolution: Authoritarian Regime-State Relations and the Triumph of Securitate Revisionism in Post-Ceausescu Romania”)

What they don’t remember is that Brates returned later to inform the audience a) when the fighting had ceased in Sibiu, b) when supplies of bottled water were on their way to Sibiu, and c) when the competent authorities verified that the water in Bucharest was safe to drink (“Revolutia Romana in Direct,” pp. 51, 72, 75, discussed p. 327 Hall, “Rewriting the Revolution”)…If your goal is “diversion,” intentional panic and manipulation, is it likely that you would return to the same subjects and say things designed to calm fears? Of course, not.

image0-007

image0-001

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For an example of the difficulty Romanian researchers face when trying to address the full complexity of Brates’ actions (few have even admitted that much)–and the logical acrobatics they have to engage in in an effort to save the Military Procuracy’s one-sided and deceptive presentation–see the following (which only addresses one of the three key interventions listed above, no. 3). Sure, Brates returned and personally (!) announced that the Water Authority said the water was ok to drink, but because he warned people to still remain vigilant, that is evidence that he was still attempting to deceive people!

După ce anunțase că apa e otrăvită s-au agitat cei de la Consiliul Național al Apelor să se dezmintă, dar Brateș dă aici o demințire cu jumătate de gură – adaugă să fim totuși vigilenți, să luăm măsurile corespunzătoare ca să nu se petreacă nenoriciri. (care-s măsurile alea nu e clar) (Marius Mioc pe FB, 31 decembrie 2018)

https://mariusmioc.wordpress.com/2018/12/31/tvr-1989-marinescu-despre-sustinerea-externa-brates-comitetul-national-al-apelor-anunta-ca-apa-potabila-din-capitala-nu-este-contaminata-sau-infestata-dar-aceasta-nu-inseamna-sa-nu-luam-in-continu/?fbclid=IwAR1J4d_qTiqIXSliRALa7Moqw-WVAoGxswnbpFIVsUJxcZKDpMWC5j7gE1E

Observations on the Military Prosecutors’ Recent Communiques on the Status of Investigations into December 1989 (IV, the Case of Teodor Brates, part 2)

For previous episodes in this series, please see:

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/08/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-i/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/11/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-ii/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/14/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iii-the-case-of-general-iosif-rus/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/17/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iv-the-case-of-teodor-brates-part-1/

(for recent use of my work, see Andrei Ursu, Mădălin Hodor, Roland O. Thomasson, „Cine a tras în noi după 22?”Studiu asupra vinovățiilor pentru victimele Revoluției Române din decembrie 1989)

 

In their April 2018 communique, the military prosecutors alleged that the TV news editor Teodor Brates intentionally disseminated false information, designed to panic the population and to create the image of an adversary to Ceausescu’s overthrow, who was in fact non-existent.  An English language article summarized it as follows:

Investigators said Teodor Brates helped spread false information that led to deaths and violence during the December 1989 uprising that followed Ceausescu’s ousting. Brates, who was deputy editor-in-chief of the news department of the Romanian Public Broadcaster TVR in December 1989, was summoned by prosecutors on Wednesday to officially receive the notification of his indictment. Charges say he coordinated the TVR broadcasts on December 22-24 1989, when anti-communist protesters took over the studios of the broadcaster. Brates went live on television to announce that “terrorists” were shooting at people and that “water has been poisoned.” The indictment says Brates was “the main factor disseminating fake news, meant to create diversions, thus highly contributing to forming the terrorist psychosis which affected Romania’s entire population (both military and civilians).”

http://www.balkaninsight.com/en/article/romanian-former-journalist-indicted-for-1989-disinformation-04-18-2018

For Vladimir Tismaneanu, the military prosecutors’ accusations are true at face value:  “the evil Teodor Brates committed was immense…He was an extremely evil disinformer.  He participated in this dismal scenario, with an unmatched cynicism.”

Nu știu dacă era isteric sau in misiune, probabil ambele. Răul comis de Teodor Brateș a fost imens. A diseminat pseudo-știri menite să genereze panică, spaimă, groază. Avea la dispozitie intreg aparatajul TVR, putea delira in voie, ceea ce probează că lucra pentru Iliescu, Brucan, Roman, Voican Voiculescu si Măgureanu. A fost un dezinformator extrem de nefast. A participat la un scenariu lugubru, de un cinism fără egal. (Vladimir Tismaneanu pe FB)

Let us examine then, the question of whether there was any reason that Brates and others would have claimed the water had been poisoned?  Did they just make it up out of whole cloth?  Because that is what so many would have us believe.  The reality of whether the water in Sibiu was actually poisoned is a separate question.  For our purposes, here, where Brates is being charged with knowingly and intentionally issuing false news reports that panicked and confused the population, we can say rather definitively that at the very least the charge is terribly unfair.

We can begin with the fact that in fall 1990, an air force officer and member of the military reform group CADA reported that in December 1989 (it appears after the execution of the Ceausescus on 25 December 1989) several “special troops” (for more on the reference, see https://romanianrevolutionofdecember1989.com/trupe-speciale-ale-comandantului-suprem-nicolae-ceausescu-marturie-video-arad/ ) were arrested at Boteni air force base, and that during the interrogation one of them declared that his mission was to poison the water (supply).  Whether or not that was pure disinformation meant to panic and confuse, or whether or not that was his actual mission, is unclear.

image0-002

Revista NU (Cluj), nr. 40 (1990), Petru Litiu si Florinela Gherasim, p. 5. (xerox, Babes-Bolyai University Library, Cluj, 1994)

Pe aerodorom au fost arestati in acele zile doi sau trei indivizi care faceau parte din trupe speciale, care vara veneau la Boteni pentru antrenamente de parasutare. 

La ancheta unul a declarat ca a avut misiunea de a otravi apa.

But with regards to the allegations about the water in Sibiu being poisoned, it is even easier to prove that Brates and others had a basis for disseminating this piece of news, because there was a well-placed suspicion at the time that the water had indeed been poisioned (whether or not it was, and with what substance, once again, is a different conversation).  See the following article, dated 4 February 1990 (The Sunday Times, James Adams, Defence Correspondent, “Securitate’s poison secret discovered,” p. A15).

Was the water in Sibiu actually poisoned?  My answer is somewhat agnostic.  Here’s why:

  1. Only one city was involved:  Sibiu.  It would seem strange if actual poisoning (as opposed to disinformation claiming that the water had been poisoned) occurred in one city.  (One caveat, however, is that this was one very important and different city in a sense:  the fiefdom of Nicolae Ceausescu’s son, Nicu Ceausescu.)
  2. The alleged test results of the Sibiu water supplies do not appear to have received national-level coverage in Romania at the time or later (I can’t vouch completely for local Sibiu publications).  There was no follow-up.
  3. The foreign doctor involved in reporting to the rest of the world the test results has had a spotty record for getting things right since December 1989.  Moreover, it would not be the first time that a well-mediated international event has attracted media gadflies, seeking their moment in the media spotlight.

All this said, it remains significant precisely because the claim was about one city alone; it wasn’t just any city but Nicu Ceausescu’s fiefdom; the allegation about people turning up sick at the hospital and of the timing of the alleged dumping of the toxin in the water supply dates from before (20-21 December 1989) the Ceausescus took flight on 22 December 1989; the foreign doctor gave details on the testing, argued that the toxin was diluted, and does not seem to have engaged in trying to blow the episode out of proportion.

Fullscreen capture 11222014 42152 PM

Romania

On December 21, 1989, people drinking from water tank #4 in Sibiu experienced headache, visual disturbances, loss of consciousness, vomiting, etc.  These symptoms are all compatible with organophosphate poisoning.  The analysis of the water (by gas chromatography) and the determination of the cholinesterase activity of the blood was done in the University of Cluj.  The conclusion was that an organophosphate had been used.  Atropine sulfate and toxogonin were advised.

As soon as the symptoms appeared among the population, water tank #4 was shut off, rinsed, and cleaned.  The people received water from army trucks.

A few days later, there was a fight in Timisoara between the army and Securitate over the water tanks.  Poisoning was feared, as had occurred in Sibiu.  According to witnesses, the Securitate possesses “all possible chemical warfare agents.”

Toxicologist Aubin Heyndrickx supervised the chemical tests and interviewed the physicians at Central Hospital who treated the patients.  From the tests and from the very high dose of atropine required to produce a response, he concluded that the tank was poisoned with sarin or VX (Report on the Humanitarian Mission to Romania, December 23-29, 1989, Laboratoria voor Toxicologie Criminalistiek, State University of Ghent).

http://www.physiciansforcivildefense.org/cdp/jan90.htm

Indeed, one can watch a brief discussion of the incident with Dr. Heyndrickx beginning at approximately the 40 second mark from an ITN broadcast of 27 December 1989:

 

http://www.itnsource.com/en/shotlist//ITN/1989/12/27/BSP271289002/?s=romania+sibiu+after+the+revolution+27+1989&st=0&pn=1

ROMANIA: SIBIU AFTER THE REVOLUTION:

}T27128901   ROMANIA: SIBIU AFTER THE REVOLUTION: United Nations medical
27.12.89     relief team arrives in Sibiu with medical supplies and blood
TX           to treat the people who were injured during the fight against
             Securitate (secret police). Toxicologists have found evidence
             that the security police poisoned the water supply. Injured
             Securitate are being treated in hospitals alongside the people
             they shot.
Clip Ref: BSP271289002 0

Clip 1of1

}T27128901   ROMANIA: SIBIU AFTER THE REVOLUTION: United Nations medical
27.12.89     relief team arrives in Sibiu with medical supplies and blood
TX           to treat the ...
  • Duration: 00:01:44 |
  • Timecode – In: 00:00:00:00  Out: 00:01:44:00 |
  • Copyright: ITN / 3rd Party Copyright

French team confirms poison in water supply

By PETER GREEN   |   Dec. 29, 1989

NADLAC, Romania — A member of a French medical team said Friday that doctors determined nerve gas was dumped into a Romanian town’s water supply during the anti-Ceausescu revolt, and five people were seriously poisoned before the substance diluted.

Once uprising leaders discovered the apparent sabotage in the municipal water tank in Sibiu, they drained the contaminated supply, said Auvin Heyndrickx, a Belgian doctor who treated some of the victims.

Heyndrickx said he went to Sibiu with a team of doctors from the French relief group ‘Doctors Without Borders’ upon hearing unconfirmed reports of the poisoning, which townspeople attributed to dictator Nicolae Ceausescu’s hated Securitate police force.

Set in the Transylvanian mountains of western Romania with a population of more than half a million, Sibiu was lorded over by Nicu Ceausescu, who was nabbed by citizens last week and remained under arrest by the new government. The government executed his father and mother, Elena, Monday on charges of ‘genocide’ and other crimes.

Heyndrickx, a professor of toxicology at the University of Ghent, Belgium, spoke with United Press International as his team passed through the town of Nadlac near the Hungarian border on their way back to France.

The French team determined that two highly toxic nerve gases, known as sarin and VX, were dumped in liquid form into Sibiu’s water on Dec. 20. Iraq, Libya and possibly Romania are the main producers of the poisons, Heyndrickx said.

Five peoplewere hospitalized with severe poisoning, he said, describing their symptoms as vomiting and ‘unknown brain damage.’

Heyndrickx attributed the relatively low number of injuries to the low concentration of the poisons in the water.

‘The quantity was very diluted,’ he said.

He held out hope that the brain damage suffered by the five victims would not be severe, but said the success of their recovery would remain unclear for days.

City workers drained and inspected the water tower before beginning the lengthy refilling process, he said.

Heyndrickx said first aid supplies from around the world had arrived in ample quantities in Sibiu and other towns in western Romania, but said long-term medical supplies and equipment are in critically short supply.

Baby formula and infant foods are desperately needed in Sibiu, as are antibiotics, anesthetics, surgical gloves and other supplies.

‘In the Sibiu pediatric hospital there is terrible malnutrition among the children, who are completely underfed,’ he said. ‘They don’t even have powdered milk.’

Foodstuffs have been in short supply in Romania despite strict rationing, which was halted this week by the new government.

Also in one of its first acts, the ruling National Salvation Front government Wednesday abolished a Ceausescu-imposed nutrition scheme that used pseudo-scientific methods to justify harmfully low daily calorie intake levels.

 

http://www.upi.com/Archives/1989/12/29/French-team-confirms-poison-in-water-supply/8183630910800/

 

Observations on the Military Prosecutors’ Recent Communiques on the Status of Investigations into December 1989 (IV, the Case of Teodor Brates, part 1)

For previous episodes in this series, please see:

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/08/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-i/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/11/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-ii/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/14/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-iii-the-case-of-general-iosif-rus/

(for recent use of my work, see Andrei Ursu, Mădălin Hodor, Roland O. Thomasson, „Cine a tras în noi după 22?”Studiu asupra vinovățiilor pentru victimele Revoluției Române din decembrie 1989)

 

Here is what the military prosecutors alleged in April 2018 in relation to the TVR news editor Teodor Brates:

În cauza cunoscută generic sub denumirea „Dosarul Revoluției”, procurori militari ai Secţiei Parchetelor Militare din cadrul Parchetului de pe lângă Înalta Curte de Casaţie şi Justiţie au dispus extinderea și efectuarea în continuare a urmăririi penale sub aspectul săvârșirii infracțiunii contra umanității față de suspectul Brateș Teodor, la data săvârșirii faptelor -adjunct al redactorului șef al Redacției ”Actualități” din TVR, pentru fapte comise în intervalul 22 – 31 decembrie 1989.

Din probatoriul administrat în cauză au rezultat următoarele:

Suspectul Brateș Teodor – adjunct al redactorului șef al Redacției ”Actualități” din TVR – a fost principalul factor de diseminare a știrilor false, cu caracter diversionist, în acest fel contribuind într-o foarte mare măsură la instalarea psihozei teroriste ce a afectat profund întreaga populației a României (militari și civili). Mesajele televizate ale suspectului s-au referit la atacuri teroriste asupra obiectivelor militare și civile, apă otrăvită, clădiri minate, diverse conduite abominabile ale așa zișilor teroriști, atacuri cu elicoptere, desanturi aeriene, coloane de blindate în deplasare etc. Repetarea acestui gen de dezinformare a făcut ca psihoza teroristă să atingă cote paroxistice și astfel să constituie principala cauză a numeroaselor pierderi de vieți omenești, vătămări și distrugeri petrecute în timpul evenimentelor revoluționare.

http://www.mpublic.ro/ro/content/c_18-04-2018-10-04

Here is how the military prosecutors’ findings about Teodor Brates were reported in English in April 2018:

Romanian Ex-Journalist Indicted for Disinformation Over 1989 Revolt

A former TV news anchor in 1989 has been charged with crimes against humanity for spreading disinformation during the anti-communist uprising that resulted in deaths.

Ana Maria Luca, BIRN, Bucharest

Romanian military prosecutors investigating for the fourth time the bloodshed that occurred during the 1989 uprising that ousted communist leader Nicolae Ceausescu on Wednesday indicted a former television news anchor for crimes against humanity. Investigators said Teodor Brates helped spread false information that led to deaths and violence during the December 1989 uprising that followed Ceausescu’s ousting.

Brates, who was deputy editor-in-chief of the news department of the Romanian Public Broadcaster TVR in December 1989, was summoned by prosecutors on Wednesday to officially receive the notification of his indictment.

Charges say he coordinated the TVR broadcasts on December 22-24 1989, when anti-communist protesters took over the studios of the broadcaster.

Brates went live on television to announce that “terrorists” were shooting at people and that “water has been poisoned.”

The indictment says Brates was “the main factor disseminating fake news, meant to create diversions, thus highly contributing to forming the terrorist psychosis which affected Romania’s entire population (both military and civilians).”

and

Romanian prosecutors point to role of fake news in 1989 Revolution diversion

18 Apr 2018
by Ro Insider

The Romanian prosecutors are investigating two military members and a former news anchor for acts that contributed to the diversion created during the days of the 1989 Revolution.

Last year, the prosecutors said they found that there was no power void in Romania during the days of the 1989 Revolution and that a military and political structure took control immediately after dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu and his wife fled Bucharest on December 22. A massive diversion and contradictory orders have led to numerous deaths in the days that followed Ceausescu’s fall, the prosecutors concluded.

The prosecutors have starting investigating Teodor Brateş, an anchor of the public television TVR during the 1989 Revolution, for crimes against humanity. According to the prosecutors, he was “the main factor for the dissemination of false news, of a diversionary character, thus contributing to a large extent to the settling in of the terrorist psychosis that deeply affected the entire population of Romania (military and civilian).”

Brateş is investigated for acts committed in between December 22 and December 31, 1989. At the time, he was the deputy editor in chief of the TVR’s Current Affairs newsroom. The messages he transmitted on air referred to terrorist attacks on military and civilian targets, poisoned water, mined buildings, various abominable conducts of the so-called terrorists, helicopter attacks, or columns of armored vehicles on the move.

“Repeating this kind of misinformation made the terrorist psychosis reach paroxysmal highs and this became the main cause of the numerous losses of human life, injuries and destruction that occurred during the revolutionary events,” the prosecutors say.

editor@romania-insider.com

 

Here is how the allegations against Brates have been received by leading Romanian intellectuals.  At the time, by Vladimir Tismaneanu:

Nu știu dacă era isteric sau in misiune, probabil ambele. Răul comis de Teodor Brateș a fost imens. A diseminat pseudo-știri menite să genereze panică, spaimă, groază. Avea la dispozitie intreg aparatajul TVR, putea delira in voie, ceea ce probează că lucra pentru Iliescu, Brucan, Roman, Voican Voiculescu si Măgureanu. A fost un dezinformator extrem de nefast. A participat la un scenariu lugubru, de un cinism fără egal. (Vladimir Tismaneanu pe FB)

and more recently…by Gabriel Liiceanu:

http://www.contributors.ro/cultura/petre-roman-%c8%99i-teodor-brate%c8%99-ii-inva%c8%9ba-pe-studen%c8%9bi-etica-la-universitatea-din-bucure%c8%99ti/

 

Many readers and observers of things Romanian…would have little idea who, in the weeks, months, and initial years, after December 1989, had Brates most in their sights…the former Securitate, the secret police of the communist regime of dictator Nicolae Ceausescu:

for example, Filip Teodorescu, who was involved in the repression of anti-regime demonstrators in Timisoara (his memoir from 1992 below)

or the mouthpiece of the former Securitate during the early 1990s, Angela Bacescu of Zig-Zag, Romania Mare, and Europa (this 1994 volume includes a number of texts from Europa)

p. 183 Angela Bacescu:  DE CE BRATES SI STARK NU SUNT ANCHETATI SI TRASI LA RASPUNDERE PENTRU INCITAREA LA OMOR DEOSEBIT DE GRAV? (!!!)

 

 

Observations on the Military Prosecutors’ Recent Communiques on the Status of Investigations into December 1989 (III, the Case of General Iosif Rus)

For previous episodes in this series, please see:

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/08/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-i/

https://rolandothomassonphd.home.blog/2019/01/11/observations-on-the-military-prosecutors-recent-communiques-on-the-status-of-investigations-into-december-1989-ii/

(for recent use of my work, see Andrei Ursu, Mădălin Hodor, Roland O. Thomasson, „Cine a tras în noi după 22?”Studiu asupra vinovățiilor pentru victimele Revoluției Române din decembrie 1989)

 

Characteristic of the quality of what the military prosecutors have thus far presented to the public is the example of one of the accusations against the head of the Air Force in December 1989, General Iosif Rus.  The most recent communique of the SPM (12/21/2018) is less specific, perhaps truncated because of the broader discussion, but still contains the same basic allegation against Rus:  on 23 December 1989, he purposely dispatched a helicopter to fly to the TV tower in central Bucharest, but instructed those at the Titu-Boteni base to intentionally paint over the roundel on the helicopter and replace it with other symbols of a different geometric shape.  The insinuation is that the plane was supposedly to look like a “terrorist” aircraft–i.e. those supposedly fighting against the change of regime on behalf of Nicolae Ceausescu–and thus give the impression of a “terrorist” attack against TVR(L) and the leaders of the National Salvation Front (Ion Iliecu, et. al.) who had seized power.

It is important to understand the symbiotic nature of this accusation with the broader accusation of the military prosecutors that no “terrorists” actually existed, that those who seized power and the heads of the military intentionally created the image of a non-existent enemy to manufacture revolutionary credibility and legitimacy for themselves and prevent others from seizing power.

This accusation was enthusiastically and uncritically embraced by certain segments of the public, particularly those long convinced that no “terrorists” actually existed and that the heads of the Ceausescu military were responsible for manufacturing the diversion.  Here is a classic example (from social media), whereby the author bellows, “these are the facts, which cannot be ignored in research.”

Nu băieții cu ochi albaștri, ci comandantul aviației, generalul Rus, este cel care a poruncit în 23 decembrie 1989 ca elicopterelor de la Regimentul 61 Elicoptere Boteni să le fie schimbate, prin revopsire, cocardele tricolore de pe fuselaj și înlocuite cu alte însemne, de alt format geometric. Astea-s faptele, care nu trebuie neglijate în cercetare.

The author of these words simply accepts the military prosecutors’ accusation at face value.  It must be true, right?  I mean, military prosecutors, accusing one of “their own,” a fellow military man, and a general no less?  I would offer that the author does not question the allegation, in large part because it converges with his narrative of what he thinks happened in December 1989.

Let us examine the claim of the military prosecutors:  that the order 1) was given on 23 December, 2) was connected directly to the flight to the TV station, 3) intended to confuse those on the ground, and 4) (implied) was part of the broader plan to create the appearance of an in fact non-existent adversary.

a) These allegations are completely upended by the claims of Comandor inginer Marian Pavel who was at Boteni during these memorable days in December 1989.  Pavel recounts that on the afternoon of 22 December 1989:

“After Nicolae and Ceausescu were put down in a field [this was after the pilot of their helicopter was forced to land or facing being shot down], Major Suciu ordered us in the S.L.A. [apparently ground/maintenance/livery crew] to paint over the roundels that were on the underside of the helicopters, that was in the form of a star, and to make them into a flag, therefore a rectangle, and to take off immediately, in order to perform aerial reconnaissance on all the nearby roads.”

In other words, the painting of the helicopters happened on 22 December and not 23 December as the military prosecutors allege, and preceded/was connected not to the flight to the TV station, but to the search for the Ceausescus.  Pavel relates that the order was relayed from Major Suciu, which means that it nevertheless could have come from Rus (although elsewhere Rus suggests the initiative was Suciu’s and not his).  The logic behind painting over the roundels is not clear from this revelation, but it hardly sounds to be the nefarious and truncated claim that the military prosecutors made:  the “other geometric shape and form” was a rectangular flag of the Romanian tricolor, and thus likely showing their allegiance to Ceausescu’s overthrow (and possibly not to be shot down by those who also supported his overthrow).  Below, in Romanian, and then we shall continue the discussion.

Marian Pavel (r): “Dupa ce Nicolae si Elena Ceausescu au fost lasati in camp, maior Suciu a ordonat la S.L.A sa vopsim cocardele de pe burta elicopterelor, care erau sub forma de stea…” (Eroica, 2015)

Comandor inginer (r) Marian Pavel, “La Boteni in Decembrie 1989,” Revista ‘Eroica,’ nr. 1-2 (2015), pp. 24-26.

–sa le facem sub forma de drapel, adica dreptunghiulare, si sa decolam de urgenta, sa facem o cercetare aeriana pe toate soselele din imprejurimi.”

 

Scan

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b) support for the idea that far from being an effort to give the impression that the helicopters belonged to the supposedly non-existent “terrorists,” their intention was to ensure the opposite…even if it came to be tragically misinterpreted and caused confusion.

In fact, this is exactly what a civilian journalist argued in March 1990:

“Attention, in order to avoid confusion however, on the underbelly of the helicopters and on the sides, the tricolor was painted over the roundels…”

Thus, if this was, as the military prosecutors have alleged, some secret effort to fool everybody, to make people believe in non-existent “terrorists”…it would have made little sense to introduce the issue into the media, and expose the supposed dastardly operation.

De la Boteni, insa, nu s-a speriat nimeni si cea mai buna dovada este ca pina si pilotul maior Zamfir pornea la cerere in ziua urmatoare doboririi sale la o noua misiune, cum au pornit si alte elicoptere militare venite in apararea Bucurestiului, de atacurile truperlor teroriste. Atentie, insa, ca sa nu se dea loc la confuzii, pe ‘burta’ elicopterelor si lateral, peste cocarda a fost vopsit tricolorul, iar piloti Botenilor au actionat cu cura impotriva teroristilor din Cimitirul Ghencea, ca si a altora, care trageau in alte zone ale Capitalei, in Floreasca, bunaoara, la una dintre misiuni, s-au localizat pe blocuri teroristi care trageau de pe acoperis, dar faptul ca jos se afla armata impreuna cu garzile patriotice nu a permis actionarea cu foc, pentru a nu periclita viata fortelor revolutionare.

Horia Alexandrescu, “Misterele de la Boteni (IV):  Fata in fata cu ‘Razboiul Electronic’,” Tineretul Liber, 18 martie 1990.

c) further confirmation that what was painted on the helicopter that flew to and supposedly intentionally attacked the TV station, comes from none other than the pilot of that helicopter, Captain Comandor Adrian Constantinescu who says “we had a tricolor painted” on the tail/fuselage.

Domnule căpitan-comandor (r) Adrian Constantinescu, în decembrie 1989 eraţi pilot militar încadrat la Regimentul 61 Elicoptere, care se afla la Titu-Boteni.

– Dar, dumneavoastră, pe elicopter, ce marcaje aveaţi?

Aveam vopsit tricolorul pe coadă.

http://www.resboiu.ro/povestea-purtatoarei-de-drapel-puma-74-la-revolutie/

Un elicopter la Televiziune, în Caietele Revoluţiei Nr.2 (34)/2011, 72 – 77

http://www.sferapoliticii.ro/sfera/182/pdf/182.01.Marcau.pdf

https://www.scribd.com/document/200092336/Caietele-Revolutiei-Nr-2-34-2011

 

d) finally, a poster who gives a detailed account of the incident from his vantage point on the 23 December 1989 in the TV area, inadvertently gives confirmation to the claims made above, that these were not some strange, intentional (false) “terrorist” markings, but “a rectangle with the colors of the Romanian flag and a circle (roundel?) with the colors of the Romanian flag!”

Victor Says:

Adevarul despre elicopterul care a tras in curtea televiziunii in dimineata zilei de 23 decembrie 1989
1,S- a tras imediat dupa ora 8 dimineata
2.Inainte de acest eveniment un colonel de infanterie a dat ordin parasutistilor si ne-a spus si noua celor din garzile patrotice ISPE ca daca apare un elicopter sa nu tragem in el deoarece vine sa traga in teroristi,nu in noi.
3.Dupa ce elicopterul a tras in curtea TV ,colonelul de infanterie care era foarte in varsta a disparut.
4.Dupa ce a tras ca sa ne omoare ( din fericire a ratat ) am riscat ca sa vad care erau insemnele si am INGHETAT,avea atat dreptunghiul cu culorile drapelului Romaniei dar si un cerc cu culorile drapelului Romaniei !
Acesta a fost ADEVARUL ! in cazul elicopterului !
Au fost si altele pana atunci !

https://mariusmioc.wordpress.com/2009/09/22/adevarul-despre-elicopterul-care-a-tras-la-televiziune-speriindu-l-pe-actualul-procuror-general-adjunct-tiberiu-mihail-nitu/

CONCLUSION:  It should be abundantly clear that the accusations (rather innuendo) of the military prosecutors is way off and the details of the repainted helicopter have been truncated and decontextualized to fit into a broader, incorrect narrative.  (As to the existence of “terrorists” in the vicinity of the TV tower and firing upon it–the reason, not “pretext” for why the helicopter was summoned in the first place, I may return in a later episode).  For now, the pertinent excerpts from two of the recent SPM communiques referenced in the introduction to this episode.

Totodată, inculpatul Iosif Rus, în calitate de comandant al Aviaţiei Militare, ar fi intervenit în noaptea de 22/23.12.1989, fără drept şi în deplină cunoştinţă de cauză, asupra planului de apărare a Aeroportului Internaţional Otopeni şi ar fi contribuit astfel la moartea a 48 de persoane (40 de militari şi 8 civili), precum şi la rănirea gravă a altor 15 persoane. La 23.12.1989 a emis ordinul diversionist de schimbare a cocardelor tricolore ale elicopterelor aparţinând Regimentului 61 Boteni, fapt ce ar fi dus la deschiderea focului fratricid, implicit la rănirea unor persoane. A emis şi alte ordine militare, conduite care în afara rezultatelor concrete enunţate ar fi contribuit la agravarea psihozei teroriste.

http://www.mpublic.ro/ro/content/c_21-12-2018-11-12

În calitate de comandant al Aviației Militare și membru al Consiliului  Militar Superior, gl. lt. (r) Iosif Rus a dat ordine cu caracter diversionist. Astfel, în seara zilei de 22.12.1989, din proprie inițiativă și fără drept, acesta a insistat în emiterea unui ordin prin care a solicitat ca în sprijinul microgarnizoanei Aeroportului Internațional Otopeni să fie trimisă o subunitate a trupelor de Securitate. Acest ordin, dat de o persoană ce nu avea dreptul să intervină în organizarea pazei și apărării Aeroportului Otopeni (cu plan propriu de apărare), a produs o ruptură informațională și de comunicare între forțele angrenate în paza și apărarea acestui obiectiv, constituind sursa unei grave confuzii, factori esențiali ce au creat premisele focului fratricid între militarii MApN și cei ai trupelor de Securitate sosite în sprijin. Fără acest ordin, neregulamentar și inutil, nu ar fi fost posibilă tragedia survenită în dimineața zilei de 23.12.1989, în urma căreia au decedat 48 de persoane (40 militari) și alte 15 au fost rănite. Totodată, față de gl. lt. (r) Iosif Rus există probe care demonstrează că, la data de 23.12.1989, acesta a dat ordin ca elicopterelor de la Regimentul 61 Elicoptere Boteni să le fie schimbate, prin revopsire, cocardele tricolore de pe fuselaj și înlocuite cu alte însemne, de alt format geometric. În condițiile în care gl. lt. (r) Iosif Rus a ordonat, în mai multe rânduri, ca aparatele de zbor amintite să efectueze diverse misiuni deasupra Capitalei (TVR, Cimitirul Ghencea etc.) și în alte zone, cu scopul combaterii presupușilor teroriști, au fost generate confuzii și suspiciuni întemeiate la nivelul militarilor dispuși la sol pentru paza diverselor obiective, situație care a dus la deschiderea focului fratricid și creșterea în intensitate a psihozei teroriste. De menționat că toate afirmațiile făcute cu privire la existența elementelor teroriste s-au dovedit ulterior a fi false.

http://www.mpublic.ro/ro/content/c_17-04-2018-12-04