Bessarabia’s Union with Romania of 1918 was a natural historic process. It yet seems that in 100 years of that major event, the two Romanian states that are separated by the border on the Prut are again in front of an important decision, political pundit Igor Boțan stated in a public debate hosted by IPN.
“The processes that took place starting with the middle of the 19th century were absolutely natural historic events and should have a natural ending. We surely should be very precautious, but resolute as regards the restoration of the historical truth and the choice that the Republic of Moldova needs to make in these very difficult circumstances. We see that what is going on in Ukraine is not at all accidental. These are Russia’s revanchist attempts and we are also involved in all these processes implicitly, if not directly,” stated the permanent expert of IPN’s project.
Igor Boțan noted that the eventual union between Moldova and Romania should be coordinated with the great powers. “The union should not harm Romania, should not be compensated from inside. There will definitely be elements and sections that will challenge, but they should not be that element that will undermine the whole process and should not be disputed by other powers. We realized that Romania, being a NATO and EU member state, should discuss all these issues. The European integration of the Republic of Moldova creates opportunities for these problems to be later discussed in other circumstances. This issue needs to be dealt with. Things go in this direction,” said the expert.
Today, as in 1918, the Moldovans are victims of harsh propaganda designed to demonize the Romanian state. “We realize that there was a polity to indoctrinate the citizens of the Republic of Moldova to make them accept that the Moldovans are different from Romanians and issues about the Moldovan language. What is the most painful is that this propaganda developed deep roots and what followed continues to have effects at present. We continue to face the effects of propaganda. There are political forces that promote a hostile viewpoint, including after the last decisions referring to the Romanian language,” said Igor Boțan.
Referring to the events that favored the Union of the two Romanian states, the expert reminded of the moment when Lenin and the Bolsheviks announced that all the international documents signed by the tsarist regime lost their validity and that was a very important event that offered the necessary legitimacy to all the decisions adopted by the People’s Council. Lenin’s wish to transform the imperial war into a civil war was another important factor. To do this, he needed arguments and he borrowed these. One of the arguments was that Russia was a prison of nations and focused on the people’s right to self-determination and the People’s Council of the Moldavian Republic also benefitted from this.
The public debate entitled “Union of 1918: what was it, why was it and for what?” was the sixth installment of IPN’s project “Impact of the Past on Confidence and Peace Building Processes” that is supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation of Germany.