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Communists’ amnesia. Op-Ed by Victor Pelin


https://ipn.md/public/index.php/en/communists-amnesia-op-ed-by-victor-pelin-7978_1081566.html

“Before forming the front of the left, the PSRM and PCRM should clarify their relations concerning the committed acts of betrayal and violation of the constitutional provisions on neutrality. It would be good if the given clarification is transparent so that public opinion could see that the future coalition of the Communists and the Socialists is solid and is based on principles and values...”
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Reanimation after hibernation

Before the snap parliamentary elections, some of the political forces revive after a kind of clinical death. It is also the case of the Party of Communists of the Republic of Moldova (PCRM). Invited by the Party of Socialists of the Republic of Moldova (PSRM) to compete together in elections as part of an electoral bloc, the PCRM decided to present its position on some of the topical events. The Moldovan service members’ participation in the exercise DACIA 21 LIVEX, which was held in Romania under the auspices of NATO, served as an occasion for confirming “the capacity of the Romanian Armed Forces to employ its capabilities in defensive operations and the permanent availability of the allied and partner forces to swiftly deploy credible contingents for ensuring defense against any potential threat to national security”. In the mentioned circumstances, after consulting the press, the administration of the PCRM deduced that Russia, which is the strategic partner of the Republic of Moldova, is the only potential aggressor against Romania. That’s why the PCRM condemned the participation of the Moldovan service members in the aforementioned exercise.

The deduction of the leader of the PCRM can be correct, but something else matters in this case – the ardor with which the leaders of the PCRM resorted to propagandistic speculations, saying that for President Maia Sandu “the wish of the U.S. ambassador is above the own presidential oath to maintain the sovereignty of the Moldovan people, above the Constitution that proclaims the neutrality status of the Moldovan state. This status excludes the probability of dispatching members of the National Army to exercises that are conducted by one of the military blocs, in this case NATO.” 

When the leaders of the PCRM, alongside those of the PSRM, say that the U.S. diplomats influence the decisions of the Moldovan administration, they should provide at least some more or less convincing proofs. Or their statements are just gossips. In this regard, we remember that before the visit planned by President Putin to the Republic of Moldova to sign the Kozak Memorandum, in November 2003, President Vladimir Voronin met with the then U.S. Ambassador Heather Hodges. We cannot know what the U.S. ambassador discussed with Voronin, but after that meeting the Moldovan President annulled Putin’s flight to Moldova, causing an unprecedented scandal in the relations with the strategic partner. Currently, to make the accusations against President Maia Sandu more believable, the leader of the PCRM should confirm the fact that the decision to humiliate in such a way President Putin was taken under the influence of the U.S. ambassador. If he does it, he will become somehow credible. He could also share with public opinion the arguments with which the U.S. ambassador convinced him. 

In fact, public opinion does not need the confessions of the leaders of the PCRM or PSRM as regards the foreign influence in the Republic of Moldova. There are documents showing that, for example, the betrayal of the PCRM by the current leaders of the PSRM wasn’t planned by foreign ambassadors. On the contrary, the preparing of that betrayal was reported to the ambassadors by the doers long before it occurred.

Who laid basis of Moldova’s cooperation with NATO?

It is evident that the narrative of the eventual electoral bloc of the PSRM and PCRM will be similar to the narrative of the current PSRM-Shor parliamentary majority that launches invective against the U.S. and EU ambassadors to the Republic of Moldova. In this regard, the call of the leader of the PSRM Igor Dodon to the parties of the left to form a common bloc so as not to allow the right to win and not to “surrender our country to the NATO plans is evidently aimed at polarizing public opinion according to geopolitical criteria. Here, the pathos of the leader of the PSRM amounts to paroxysm: “will Moldova become a military platform for NATO or not?

But in the communication with the citizens and in the process of forming the PSRM-PCRM bloc, the leaders of the two parties will have to clarify who laid the basis of the practical cooperation with NATO, especially of the participation of the Republic of Moldova in different military exercises and campaigns under the aegis of NATO? The leader of the PSRM, unlike that of the PCRM, could remember that such cooperation was started and developed by the eventual partner, the PCRM, when this held complete power in the Republic of Moldova as, during the very intense cooperation with NATO, the leader of the PSRM held one of the highest ranking posts in the Government, while his mate Zinaida Grechanyi signed the documents needed to implement the PCRM’s decisions on cooperation with NATO. Here are only several examples:  

  • On July 3, 2003, the Parliament controlled by the constitutional majority of the PCRM adopted decision No. 276-XV concerning the participation of the National Army service members in the international post-conflict humanitarian operations in Iraq. NATO joined the operations in Iraq of the coalition led by the U.S. on September 22, 2004. Until 2008, the PCRM majority adopted six decisions of the kind to ensure the rotation of the Moldovan service members in Iraq;
  • On July 31, 2006, the Parliament controlled by the PCRM’s majority adopted the decision on the conduct of the military exercises Cooperative Longbow/Lancer 2006 in concert with NATO on Moldova’s territory. The excises were held during September 11-29, 2006 with the participation of service members from nine NATO member states;
  • On October 4, 2007, President and PCRM leader Vladimir Voronin found a justification for the Moldovan service members’ participation in the exercises staged by NATO. In this regard, Vladimir Voronin launched the initiative of reforming the Nationals Army so that it could be involved in peacekeeping missions at the request of international organizations. In this regard, so as to increase the capacity to take part in international missions, the foreign partners, including NATO, were encouraged to invite the Moldovan service members to take part in international drills and exercises, etc.

We see that during the government of the PCRM, Moldova’s neutrality status didn’t represent any impediment in the process of cooperating with NATO. It’s true that one of the current heavyweights of the PSRM, who was empowered with propagandistic duties, expressed then his opposition to the policies pursued by Vladimir Voronin, reproaching him for violating the neutrality status for multiple times: „... the opening of the NATO Information Center; modernization of the military airdrome in Mărculești in accordance with the NATO standards; holding, in breach of the provisions of the Constitution, of the military exercises Cooperative Longbow / Lancer 2006 together with NATO and dispatching of Moldovan service members to assist the United States and NATO in Iraq”.

It seems that the reproaches invoked above can serve as a justification for the betrayal of the PCRM by the current leaders of the PSRM. But this is not so. One of the central figures of the PSRM, Zinaida Grechanyi, held the post of Prime Minister when the contingent of Moldovan service members in Iraq was increased twice. Grechanyi signed decision No. 951 of August 11, 2008 concerning the ensuring of organizational measures and conditions needed for the participation of National Army service members in the international post-conflict humanitarian operations in Iraq. Zinaida Greachany’s deputy Igor Dodon, who held the post of deputy prime minister, didn’t then express his dissatisfaction with the violation of the neutrality status of the Republic of Moldova.

Conclusions

The PCRM’s coming out of hibernation before the snap parliamentary elections is accompanied by amnesic crises. On the one hand, the leaders of the PCRM say that they didn’t forget anything of what the potential coalition partners did, including the betrayal. On the other hand, the leaders of the PCRM forgot that they were those who opened up the way for a broad cooperation of the Republic of Moldova with NATO, which didn’t go against the neutrality status of the Republic of Moldova somehow.

In the examined situation, it could be a clinical case that is more dangerous than a simple amnesia. The point is that reprovable facts are usually forgotten, while the positive facts are invoked on any suitable occasion, especially before election campaigns. Incontestably, the Republic of Moldova’s cooperation with NATO can be classed as a success story with which both the leader of the PCRM, Vladimir Voronin, and the leaders of the PSRM who betrayed him, Igor Dodon and Zinaida Grechanyi, could be equally proud of. 

Recommendation

Before forming the front of the left, the PSRM and PCRM should clarify their relations concerning the committed acts of betrayal and violation of the constitutional provisions on neutrality. It would be good if the given clarification is transparent so that public opinion could see that the future coalition of the Communists and the Socialists is solid and is based on principles and values.