The Archive of the Romanian Revolution of December 1989

A Catch-22 December 1989, Groundhog-Day Production. Presenting the Personal Research & Scholarship of Richard Andrew Hall, Ph.D.

23 – 26 decembrie 1989 pe strada + Dan Iosif (filmari furate de la S.R.I.) (Annotated)

Aug 19, 2019

mudavaflex 1.65K subscribers

Many thanks to mudvaflex for posting this amazing historical document!  (Any help in deciphering/clarifying/correcting would be appreciated!; this is a rough first cut, I will amend as I watch it again and receive help.)

A few annotations below (times approximate):  it begins at 09:37 am 23 decembrie 1989

02:30  Stelian Tanase

05:10 1122 12/23 in the CC building Guse, Vlad, and a ton of communist party apparatchiks (including Dasculescu?)

05:31 Nica Leon

06:00 “rezistenta” (?) mercenari straini, C(E)PACA (? acronym)

06:06 Dumitru Mazilu 1123 12/23

06:20 Securitate Director Iulian Vlad, “exista o conducere a acestei miscari” (?)

06:47 1125 12/23 Mazilu tells Vlad Iliescu at MApN

07:30 Demonstration in front of CC midday 12/23 (slogans unclear, help!)

08:50 Person calling for everyone to go to Radio on Nuferilor because of (expected) attack by “trupe arabe”–intentional disinformation to make people leave square in front of CC, rumor/misinformation, unclear.

12:09 a tanchist in his black overalls

12:30 1256 12/24

13:47 Individual lists the license plates of cars from which people are firing on civilians, military etc. (any sound familiar?)

14:17 Same individual at barricade/filtru talks about trupele lui Ceausescu, USLA, comandouri, with woman next to him who chimes in.

14:20 She then talks about Cernica and three calugari on 22/23 whom they mistakenly thought smuggling bombs (?)

16:16 Salvarea (ambulance) at a hospital, showing bullet holes (any idea which hospital this is?)

17:00 discussion of stolen car, at Militie

17:50 baraje defended by tineri, Militie officer asked why they are not out there

18:40 now 12:39 12/25

20:30 Victor Liviu Dumitescu as we learn from min. 31:00 (elev liceu 23 august) begins to recount about incendiu 11-1130, securitate, tras in soldati, str. Galati, semnale luminoase, trupe securisti, teroristi.  Dumitrescu’s story is riveting and emotional.

21:42 Dressed as Amry

22:04 Pirelli tires as evidence car from Securitate (not available to everyday people), the car brand new

22:40 About being at the Inter on 21st at 730 pm

23:38 Authorities closed metro stop at P.U. stop demonstrators could not take refuge/flee and as someone in crowd suggests, new people could join the demonstrators.

24:00 Trasoare (tracer bullets), militieni securisti with bastoane electrice

24:48 Amenda

26:20 older Prof de muzica with them in the holding cell at Jilava

27:00 crying, thinking they would spend “Christmas and New Years” there

28:00 continuation of very emotional scene; those who mistreated them at Jilava must be brought to justice

29:39 one of the officers at Jilava said to them “In four days you are destroying what it took us 40 years for us to build”…young girls were released even on night of 21/22, he and those serving political sentences at 4pm on 22nd.  Included people 17 and 9 months old.

31:00 Victor Liviu Dumitrescu states his name talks about his pride in his high school 23 August, that students from their and former students demonstrated with him.

32:00 Romanii romani

32:24  Names

34:30 “3 B 739” (?) Director of Theater Bulandra (anyone know who this is) defended from crowd by people pointing out how did he get a license plate with such a low number (numarul mic) (suggestions Securitate linked)

36:01 1346 12/25 Burning of an Orthodox Calendar which includes Nicolae Ceausescu’s birthdate (some controversy before burning)

36:33 Criticisms already of TV as having same slogans as a month before, no real change, why no public trial of the Ceausescus etc.

37:30 TV said not to come to demonstration because of risk of dum-dum bullets.

37:58 Demonstration  1506 12/26.  Fara comunisti, nu sintem diversionisti chanted.  (Note:  this shows two things.  1) the Front, its leadership, and its actions were contested almost immediately; 2) the stupidity of the idea that the Front and those who had seized power invented or controlled “the terrorists”…because this is when they really would have needed to have some gunfire to clear the square and yet, the demonstration was able to take place.  My thanks to Andrei Ursu for highlighting this point to me back in August.)

39:00 1522 12/26

40:00 1523 12/26, like a month earlier

40:47 A riveting confrontation between a woman challenging Dan Iosif about the valuables which the revolutionaries/those who seized power took into their possession, and how sefii seem to be benefiting from different things at the expense of others.

44:00 (Note:  participants of different political stripes tend to credit Dan Iosif for his actions during these days, but after as we see here 25/26 views sharply diverge and tend to be critical).  Here we see a dictatorial, “borfas” Dan Iosif.

45:44 Dan Iosif says he told Mazilu “diplomas” should be awarded to all the luptatori who participated in the fighting.  (“Class” rearing its ugly head…?)

47:20 Orders to stay away and avoid “ziaristi straini” (already the suspicion of foreigners creeps into the new regime)

47:52  Compromised people in the current leadership, including among military…Cadre militare, cadre conducerii, secrete, Cinca?…anyone know who the man is speaking?

48:35 The speaker talks about a Doamna Calin (he is tightlipped) and Col. Radulescu.  The speaker talks about receipts (chitante) found for banci elevetiene, mentions Nicolciou, dosar CEC.

51:00 onward Orders from PM (i.e. Petre Roman) to take control of documents (chitante mentioned above).  References to secretarul, Dona Adrian (?)

52:41 Director General CC Nicolcioiu Vasiliu (for some discussion, see for example )

53:22 The speaker talks about a single receipt of $3000 and 20 receipts in total.

54:00 Liste, domcilii provizorii si case (conspirative), banci elvetieni, “fugilor ofiteri securitate), membri rezervi, fotografiile.  [The suggestion is here that documents about the financing of the relocation of Securitate officers, an organized and preplanned system, were taken over by the PM’s office…]

55:22 “They no longer exist” (because they have been seized by the PM’s office)

56:15 Calin Mircea (bespectacled official, from Gospodarie (de partid?), says location), shows files he kept to the side…one is titled Dunarea (Securitate’s foreign intelligence directorate’s front company) and one that says Actiune de influenta, *Lumina.  “Mi-e frica” as a fitting ending…


*Din partea lui Mihai Demetriade:

Câteva detalii: acțiunea «LUMINA» era o acțiune de dezinformare și propagandă în exterior, care avea ca obiective îmbunătățirea imaginii RSR în Occident și manipularea exilului. Se realiza prin recrutări interne, agenți care ulterior erau trimiși în străinătate, pentru propagare de știri, achiziția unor spații publicistice în marile ziare, publicarea unor volume (de pildă operele lui NC în diferite limbi străine). Fiecare membru important al exilului avea o contramăsură de discreditare și denigrare, prin informații difuzate și prin articole publicate. De pildă regele Mihai a avut o asemenea “umbră” tot timpul, ca problemă specifică, la care lucrau mulți agenți și ofițeri. Partidul conducea toată operatiunea.




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