One of the most decisive moments in the Romanian Revolution of 1989 was Ceausescu’s December 21st speech (or lack thereof). This speech was an annual event and carefully scripted by the regime to insure both success and the appearance of popular support. Workers, military units and other popular organizations were bused to the capitol and given orders on where to stand, when to applaud and….
The seemingly cordial conversation between the Soviet and Romanian communist leaders less than two weeks before the troubles started in Timişoara provides evidence of the wide differences between them. Ceauşescu wields the formulas of orthodox socialism, while Gorbachev tries to point him toward modernization, change, flexibility, and listening to the wishes of the Romanian people. Ceauşescu….
Elena and Nicolae Ceausescu fled from Bucharest by helicopter on December 22, but the pilot soon landed, claiming that they would be fired upon. The couple then hijacked a car but they were recognized, chased and caught by local police in Tirgoviste. Ion Iliescu announced on national television the next day that the Ceausescus had been arrested, and he said, “The time will come for their just….