21 October 2020

Gheorghe Russu

Vice-director, The Center for Combating Economic Crimes and Corruption

Parties-Phantoms, Parties - State Institutions, Parties - State Enterprises


20 parties have registered in the current election campaign. Many people say it is a too big number for such a small country as Moldova. At the same time, much more parties could take part in the election campaign.

Last week illustrated

Activists launch Moldova’s first ‘Space Camp’ © Susan Coughtrie

Deficit of Moldovan Politicians' Leadership and Hidden Psychological War

The end of the political season and the last weeks' events are a good reason for summing up some results. One of them is that the leaders of the political parties in Moldova are rather the parties' bosses, as they are not leaders.
Irina Severin, 23 July 2010, 15:10

Moldovan political class's infantilism

The end of the political season and the last weeks' events are a good reason for summing up some results. One of them is that the leaders of the political parties in Moldova are rather the parties' bosses, as they are not leaders. A political leader is distinguished by the vision of future he is leading the country into, by the ability to generate decisions and to find the approaches in politics favoring the country and consolidating society. Moldovan politicians, with just rare exception, don't happen to possess such qualities.

Mihai Ghimpu with his decree on the Soviet Occupation Day is the exception to this sad rule, as unlike others, he realizes that it is impossible to advance unless being well aware of the past. This is topical not only for Moldova. According to the Russian journalist Anastasia Naryshkina, with whom it is impossible to disagree, trying to progress without realizing the tragic past is the same as "wearing an elegant dress on a dirty body". She emphasizes in her article : "Truth Cures, Untruth Ruins" It is true both for each particular person and for the peoples as a whole. Our country is chronically sick of lies and reticence, and I am afraid it is incurable".

Everybody understands perfectly that the acting President's decree has historical truth behind it and there is nothing we can do about it. Even if it is not favored by Russia continuing going through the identity crisis ever since the USSR collapse and still being unable to find itself in a new political context. Ghimpu took a decision which he had to take if Moldova intends to integrate into the civilized world and to leave the totalitarian past behind.

What do Moldovan politicians do in such situation? The first reaction is to ban Ghimpu's decree and the historical truth together with it to prove their devotion to Russia at any price. Meanwhile, does Russia need such devotion based on deceit and denial of reality, isn't it a disservice in respect of Russia itself, which is being given a false signal?

Moldovan politicians mislead both Russia and their electorate by coming out against the decree, as everybody admits the decree's correspondence with the historical truth. The question arises as to whether Russia needs such partners and Moldovan electors need such politicians.

If they do, then they shouldn't complain then of being deceived. Giving up so easily their positions regarding such obvious matters as the historical past are these politicians capable of standing up for the country's interests and of being reliable partners? The answer is obvious.

Moldovan politicians showed Russia that they easily yield to pressure and blackmail and are even ready to take advantage of the Constitutional Court to "correct" the decision taken by the acting President to please Russia. We can be sure that from now on Russia will deal with these Moldovan politicians exclusively in the language of pressure and blackmail. Such actions hardly arouse respect in Europe as well. Moldova automatically leaves the category of the partner-country respecting itself for the category of just a poor country needing help.

In this context, it is understandable the awaken interest for Saakashvili who although yielded to provocation having engaged in an armed conflict in August 2008, but doesn't lose the national dignity. Meanwhile, it looks like Moldova started being left out. Hilary Clinton during her East-European tour didn't find opportunity to visit Chisinau and to support a "young democracy". It's simple to understand - it is impossible to respect a country which doesn't respect itself. The strange thing is that the politicians who humiliated their country so much still intend to run for President.

About lost opportunities and pragmatism in politics

Moldovan politicians failed to take advantage of the Ghimpu's initiative, who assumed the responsibility for the necessary step and to work out a common position based on the historical truth, at the same time offering both Russia and Russian-speaking citizens in Moldova a reconciling formula. All they had to do was to strain their brains a bit instead of giving up their positions in a primitive way. It would benefit Russia as well as it would be a sign that it is impossible to continue heroising Stalinism since it's originally a criminal and therefore it is disadvantageous. It would rouse Russia to search new forms and new models of cooperation and leadership which it undoubtedly has, given this country's huge potential. It would give impetus to harmonization of relations as a whole in Europe suffering from Russia's inability to digest its past and move forward.

Of course, Moldovan politicians don't think with such categories. However, even the smallest country taking a worthy position is capable of having considerable influence on the European politics as a whole. It is self-respect and the ability to stand up for their principles that is the "soft power" of small countries' leaders which can't be ignored even by the strongest states. And this makes the politician Ghimpu's position pragmatic.

Unfortunately, other members of the Alliance act in relations with Russia like businessmen following the principle: "you give me support at the elections; I give you historical truth and national dignity of the country". It looks like they don't understand that politics and business have are ruled by different laws . If they showed that they easily yield to blackmail, it will be permanent. The negotiation position they have taken is called "a lemon's position": when one negotiating party demonstrates its weakness, another responds with bigger pressure and will be pressing until it presses out everything - like from a lemon. It's regarding the events that we have been observing over the last weeks, with Ghimpu's decree being just one example out of many others.

The politician Ghimpu takes a negotiating "stone position" with the issues which are principal for the country - pressing him is useless. At the same time, it is advantageous to agree upon some mutually advantageous compromise with Ghimpu because there is no doubt that he will stand up for the reached agreements just as much firmly and will follow them. This can't be said about other politicians who got used to promising everything under pressure and then failing to keep their promises provoking bigger Moscow's annoyance.

It is Speaker Ghimpu's "concrete" reliability that makes it possible for the coalition to continue existing, although nobody gave even a few months of its existence. As for the others' position, both the electorate and Russia now have to guess who of them is really being deceived by these Moldovan politicians. Perhaps, three leaders of the ruling Alliance proceed from the fact that politics is a priori immoral, so all that they do is a norm, while the fair position of Ghimpu is anomaly. They are wrong - the politician's power in the informational epoch consists in the correctness and clearness of the position taken by him as all secrets become evident very quickly. That is why the position taken by Filat, Lupu and Urechean from the political point of view not only lacks pragmatism, but is deeply defective.

What has fogged Moldovan politicians' consciousness?

Russia's "active measures" in response to Ghimpu's decree were preceded by a quite long period of the Moldovan political class's hysterization by means of the PubliKaTV channel where presenters of the FabriKa (Factory) program were methodically humiliating Ghimpu and imposing the inferiority complex in front of Russia as a model of common sense. Their hysterical "suggestions" to Russia to block Moldovan wine access to the Russian market played their role both in formation of the Moldovan politicians' and Russia itself inadequate reaction. Russia was just obliged to ban wine export in order not to disappoint those who consider it as manifestation of Russia's power, although it is rather manifestation of weakness.

Politics is a pure psychology in general, and especially in the informational epoch. If PublikaTV presented by some television hosts didn't rage live, instead suggesting a calm discussion of the subject with politically non-committed experts, reaction of Moldovan politicians and, respectively, of Russia would have been absolutely different. The subject of the Soviet Occupation Victims Memory Day could have become a reason for the society's unification and reconciliation of its different components by realizing the tragedy and empathy. Verbalization of the problem would lead to purification and harmonization of the entire society - it is what psychologists call catharsis.

Reconciliation would accelerate formation in Moldova of the modern European identity with which the concept of the civil nation co-exists harmonically with the ethnic identity. Speaking of the ban of the Communist symbols, the necessity of which was also evaded by Filat, Lupu and Urechean, it is the Russian-speaking population that has been stating the necessity of this step more and more. The use of the Soviet totalitarian symbols in Moldova is equal to the use of fascist swastika in Europe. The difference between the two totalitarian symbols of the equally criminal regimes is only that the fascist swastika is condemned and banned while the Communist one lives and flourishes thanks to fearful Moldovan politicians. Given the terrible crimes committed under the Communist symbols, the question is not to ban or not to ban it but whether Moldovan politicians have right not to ban the Communist symbols even if it promises them some profits. Moldovan politicians should recognize their responsibility - since each their step is a precedent leaving its imprint on the European policy as a whole.

The "Fifth TV Column" In Use

The new TV channels' role in the Communist symbols subject is especially interesting. On June 28th, the Soviet Occupation Victims Memory Day, neither PubliKaTV, nor JurnalTV broadcasted the tribute ceremony for the repressions' victims with participation of Moldovan politicians. Both channels synchronically showed the hysterical crowd of the Communists raging in front of the Parliament's building. The Communist party behavior is understandable - it stopped being a political party long time ago and have turned into a destructive force working against their country's interests. While the role of the new TV channels openly supporting the Communists' outrage is still expecting its explanation.

It just proves once again that the Soviet past in Moldova is still persisting - Moldovan politicians' and TV channels' actions remind Stalin regime's practice when the Center (Moscow) was sending to Moldova the order listing those who had to be shot, and local executors were trying to "exceed the plan" of extermination of their citizens manifold to please the Center.

Stalinism is going on in Moldova - by means of the moral debilitation of the population and politicians, by means of derision of such qualities as self-respect of politicians and of the people that takes place daily at PubliKaTV. "Demnitatea" (dignity) and "Verticalitatea" (verticality) have become the abusive words at the TV channel. It is always being suggested that all the electorate is interested in its stomach and satisfaction of the primitive needs. Perhaps it is true for the TV hosts themselves who are ready to be overdiligent in the pseudo-Soviet propaganda for a good salary but it is not true in respect of the overwhelming majority of Moldovan citizens who are not so primitive as the TV hosts Botsan and Morari try to depict them. PubliKaTV represented by them acts like a subdivision participating in the psychological war against its own people imposing the inferiority complex and cynical stereotypes of thinking on them.

As for the politicians, they willingly yield not only to the political pressure from outside but also to the thoroughly planned and masterly executed by the TV channel psychosis. It is well-known that those are the subject to intimidation who are inclined to be intimidated - even a dog would never attack the one who is not afraid of it. At the same time, as soon as it feels fear, it attacks its victim. It is what happened after Ghimpu's decree when the psychosis and the fear led to the maximum point in Moldovan politicians by the PubliKaTV channel gave rise to Moscow's aggressive reaction. Now, Russia itself looks quite odd having yielded to its own provocation (as it is known, the Romanian owner of the channel is closely connected with the influential Russian political technologists) and is clumsily trying to get out of this situation with the total blocking of Moldovan wines, claiming that "Russia has never introduced a total ban on Moldovan wine import".

The reproaches addressed to Ghimpu with issuing of the decree unilaterally are manipulative continuation of the psychological war against own people. If Ghimpu didn't assume the responsibility for the decree, then, given the quality of the rest of Moldovan politicians it would never be issued. Without the political class's betrayal, Moldova would have already left the Stalin past and start the progress. Thanks to the efforts of the Moldovan politicians and pocket Constitutional Court, Moldova returned to the Stalin past. Reproaches against Ghimpu at the "conjunctiveness" are also misplaced. It's time for politicians to realize that the electorate is not a piece of meat that can be divided by politicians among themselves. The public in Moldova is much wiser than politicians and are capable of evaluating their actions properly. To do this, they need access to the reliable, not faked-up information. It looks like this is the biggest problem in Moldova where the psychological war entered a veiled stage under the mask of new "independent mass media".


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