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.

The Tismaneanu Commission’s Final Report, Television, and the Terrorists (III)

(purely personal views as always, based on over two decades of prior research and publications)

In episode one, Nicolae Stefan Soucoup related the capture and interrogation of terrorist suspect Silviu Dutu, a sergeant major from UM 0530 Rosu, a Securitate special unit (in this respect, readers may recall the references in December 1989 and in the initial months thereafter according to which the “terrorists” were members of Securitate “special units”).  Far from a unique case, Dutu was to later escape prosecution based on the medical diagnosis of having “exercised poor judgment” as a result of “shock”:

In episode two, Soucoup related the words of the mortally-wounded rugby player Bogdan Serban Stan, who insisted that “I was shot by a civilian near me,” while defending the Television Station.  Elsewhere in 1990, Soucoup was one of those who discussed the use of 5,6 mm caliber ammunition by those they were fighting against, the terrorists.  Elena Bancila, the tenacious, grieving mother of Bogdan Serban Stan, detailed how the medical records at the hospital to which her son was taken showed he had been hit with a bullet smaller than 6 mm:

(a civilian shows television cameras on 24 December 1989 that the enemy, the “terrorists,” are firing with bullets smaller than those he and the Army were using)

see, in relation to this topic, from 2008 and 2009: The Romanian Revolution for Dum-Dums (Part I) by Richard Andrew Hall ; The Romanian Revolution for Dum-Dums (Part II) by Richard Andrew Hall; The Romanian Revolution for Dum-Dums (Part III) by Richard Andrew Hall; The Romanian Revolution for Dum-Dums (Part IV) by Richard Andrew Hall; Bullets, Lies, and Videotape: The Amazing, Disappearing Romanian Counter-Revolution of December 1989 (by Richard Andrew Hall)

Prin televiziune s-au făcut majoritatea diversiunilor, cea mai eficientă fiind reprezentată de „pericolul de moarte” omniprezent întruchipat de „teroriştii fideli dictatorului Ceauşescu”; acesta a fost arestat în 22 decembrie, într-o unitate militară din Târgovişte. Pericolul părea total credibil întrucât în perioada 22-27 decembrie au fost înregistraţi 942 de morţi şi mii de răniţi. Majoritatea au fost ucişi şi răniţi pe străzile din centrul capitalei şi al altor oraşe martirizate ca urmare a acestei diversiuni. Ulterior nu a fost acuzat şi judecat nici un terorist….Potrivit declaraţiilor generalului-magistrat Dan Voinea…„În decembrie 1989 scopul era deturnarea caracterului anticomunist al revoluţiei şi preluarea puterii prin teroarea instalată”17.  [pp. 623-624]

The 2006 Final Report of the Presidential Commission for the Study of the Communist Dictatorship in Romania (also known as the Tismaneanu Report, after its Chairman, Professor Vladimir Tismaneanu) stridently alleges that Romanian Television and those who appeared on it beginning the afternoon of 22 December 1989 were intentionally responsible for creating the “majority of the diversions” through which 942 people died in the days which followed (versus 162 before 22 December under orders from Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu) by claiming that “terrorists loyal to the Ceausescu dictatorship” posed a lethal threat. The authors of the Report then add, as if to confirm their contention that the “terrorists” were an invention of those who took power in December 1989:  “Later not a single terrorist was charged or tried.”  To bolster their argument, they invoke the findings of Military Prosecutor General Dan Voinea [who led the investigation of the December 1989 events for much of the post-communist era], who states “In December 1989, the goal was to divert the anticommunist character of the revolution and to seize power through the terror they had installed.”

The Tismaneanu Report misunderstands and misrepresents both the “terrorists” and the role of Romanian Television.  In fact, not only does it get the “terrorists” wrong overall, it doesn’t even manage to get right what happened in and around the Television building itself.  Here’s why:

According to Dan Voinea, only standard ammunition in the arsenals of the various Romanian forces were used in December 1989 (primarily the Army’s 7,62 mm ammunition):—58783 .  The Military Procuracy’s findings on December 1989 are typically undetailed–as I would argue, effectively “sanitized”–avoiding any mention of the type of ammunition with which Bogdan Serban Stan was killed:

334. Stan Şerban Bogdan (Televiziune-Vol. 53) – decedat
Numitul Stan Şerban-Bogdan, fiul lui Şerban şi Elena, născut la data de 14.08.1968 în Bucureşti, cu ultimul domiciliu în Bucureşti (…) în dimineaţa zilei de 23.12.1989 a fost rănit prin împuşcare în zona TVR şi a fost transportat la Spitalul Colentina, fiind ulterior transferat la Spitalul Sectorului 4, unde a decedat în seara zilei de 24.12.1989.
Din raportul medico-legal nr. A3/271/1989 din 15.02.1990 rezultă că moartea lui Stan Şerban a fost violentă şi a fost cauzată de o plagă împuşcată toracică.

But beyond the claims of Soucoup and Elena Bancila, there is actual video evidence from the area around the Television Station during the fighting in December 1989, which demonstrates that those whom the Army and civilians were fighting used atypical ammunition, in some cases smaller than the standard 7,62 mm ammunition–therefore, lending credence to the claim that Bogdan Serban Stan was shot by the enemy with a bullet different from those used by the defenders of television (i.e. ruling out the “friendly fire” scenario so willingly embraced by so many observers of December 1989, to the delight of those who wish to hide their deeds).

Un Craciun Revolutionar (15 minutes of Previously Unseen Footage from 24 December 1989 by Andrei Iliescu)

This has apparently been around for a few months, but I only discovered it recently:

Pe 24 decembrie 1989, fotograful Andrei Iliescu abia scapase de la Jilava, unde-l bagase militia pentru ca poza protestele, si umbla uimit pe strazile Bucurestiului revolutionar. Nu mai avea buletin, singurul lui act era camera video. El a filmat aceste secvente.

which comes from

I draw attention to the sequence from approximately min. 3:37 to 3:53 in which the young soldier is asked about and discusses those whom they are fighting (this is in the vicinity of the TVR Television station).  (My thanks to Gigga Adrian Tudor, in particular, and Corneliu N. Vaida for clarifying the exchange for me.)

Soldier:  “Au mitraliere, care sunt micute…Cum au astia…americanii” (They have small machine guns…like the Americans.)

Voice off camera:  “Sunt mai bune ca ale voastre?” (Are they better than yours?)

Soldier:  “Da, bine-nteles.”  (Yes, of course.)

Soldier:  “Sunt mai eficiente; consuma mai putin si distrug mai mult, in general asa” (They’re more efficient; they consume less and destroy more, generally speaking.)

That the “terrorists” had weapons different from and in addition to the standard ones the Army rank-and-file were equipped with is and should be beyond dispute by now, and yet another proof of their existence.  We have, of course, multiple similar claims in the same Bucharest neighborhood, elsewhere in Bucharest, and indeed throughout the rest of the country.

From approximately min 0:45 to 1:10, also from the same day, 24 December 1989

Video No. 2: Bucharest, Piata Aviatorilor, near TVR (Romanian state Television) headquarters, “Vidia” Bullets

In the second video (posted by Alexandru2006 (Alexandru Stepanian) at, a civilian shows how the bullets shot by “the enemy”—i.e. “the terrorists”—are different than the standard ammunition (7.62 mm) he and the others are using.  Based on other video, photos, and accounts, these may be “vidia” bullets—there are many testimonies from those who fought in the area near the TV station regarding these bullets.  They are clearly smaller than the standard ammunition he and the others are using; my guess:  the under 6 mm caliber bullets Soucoup talks about and Elena Bancila says medical personnel believed her son Bogdan Serban Stan was killed with.

from  blv 111909tk6

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