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The eastern hood and the western dude
essay [ ]
A reply on a Financial Times article

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by [LucianRuda ]

2009-04-17  |     | 



Countries do not really get to choose their critics. If they would, I would definitely choose a different one for understanding and assessing the inner-workings of the Romanian political and social life so I wouldn’t have to take the mumblings of a certain reporter from the Financial Times.

He criticizes Romania’s decision to offer (by no means suddenly and without reason) fast-track citizenship to some million Romanians that have the misfortune of living in a neighboring country, Moldova.

For those who managed to mention nothing about contentious elections in Moldova but now criticize Romania for doing so: what happened in Moldova should be praised and encouraged by all means all across the world. Traian Basescu, Romania’s president, has stressed on the (already existing) opportunity of Romanians in Moldova to become Romanian citizens, but it should be stressed that this “offer” is by no means restricted to those who “tend to side with the opposition”, as a certain Financial Times reporter would like to suggest. I would also take note of the intentionally misleading categorization of Moldovan language as a “variant of Romanian”, which would imply there are significant differences between the two, which is factually wrong.

And maybe some more questions should be raised. Was this reporter, with his street-smart wannabe publication, just as offended and straight forward outraged when Hungary did a similar trick for the Hungarians leaving in Transilvania, a geographical region of Romania? Was the same reporter outraged by the speeches of Hungarian elected authorities on the topic of regional autonomy for regions of Romania? Was he offended by the interference of Hungarian officials in the internal affairs of the neighboring country, Romania? If not, why not? Shouldn’t an intra-European issue between two member countries be of more interest and shouldn’t this receive more spotlight than the righteous gesture of support between Romania, one of Europe’s “most unruly and dysfunctional members” as the reporter dares to classify it, and a neighboring country of not just Romania but the European Union as well?

Romania’s behavior was by no means impulsive, and all the arguments brought forward by the reporter of the above cited publication on “population transfer”, “ethnic homogenization” , “fragmentation” and so on and so forth, are more applicable to what happened in Romania and Moldova under the communist regimes, and to what is still happening in Moldova under the current, still communist, regime. I simply cannot see any, and I mean absolutely any, connection with the Yugoslav succession, so it’s really hard to comment on that. I would guess that evoking the horrors of other events in the region should appeal to the conscience and sensibility of the unaware reader. Or is it just poor journalism? That’s for the reader to decide.

So, moving on: “EU’s real problem is how to deal with neighbors it does not plan to embrace as members”. Or at least this is what a reporter of the Financial Times sees as a “real problem”. I am a little ashamed to say that we solved this “real problem” ever since childhood. When we didn’t liked someone joining our play group, for any reason, we would just kindly ask him to “go play in front of your block”, or in plain Romanian language (as well as the Moldavian “variant of Romanian”): “Du-te si joaca-te la scara ta!”.

It’s not just Moldova who is “part of a post-Soviet buffer of countries with unresolved conflicts”. I would be tempted to mention Romania here, but you can pick any country that has some territory between the eastern border of the EU and East-Berlin. Wait! Did I just say “East-Berlin”? I meant Berlin. Financial Times wants Europe to show “it can influence events in Moldova (not to mention Romania)”. Well, I can be just as mean and idiotic: IT CAN’T and IT WON’T. Not if they listen to crap poured in the media by certain reporters of The Financial Times. I kept the swearing for the end intentionally. If you were passionate enough about this topic to read through the end of this, you probably agree with my arguments, including my rage, so you won’t mind me slipping at the end. Not that much anyway.

So let me just become outrageous for my closing: some raised their voices and asked for a Romanian referendum on the unification of Romania and Moldova. Don’t get me wrong, I am all against that, but if I would have to choose between abandoning Romanians in Moldova and abandoning the European Union I can tell you my answer right now: Good Bye European Union!

You can find the original article referenced here at this address: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/4af4930a-29b0-11de-9e56-00144feabdc0.html

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