[Marxism] A Communique on the Events in Moldova from Rezistenta Populara

Thomas Campbell avvakum at gmail.com
Wed Apr 8 16:00:55 MDT 2009


This is my translation (from the Russian) of a communique issued by
Rezistenta Populara on the unrest in Moldova. It was just published on
the website of the Vpered Socialist Movement, a Russian Trotskyist
group, at:

http://www.vpered.org.ru/comment169.html

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A Communique from the Rezistenta Populara Political Movement on the
Situation in Moldova after the Parliamentary Elections of April 5,
2009

According to the official results of the parliamentary elections that
took place on April 5, 2009, the ruling party in Moldova, the
pseudo-communist PKRM (Party of Communists of the Republic of
Moldova), received 49.9% of the vote. This enables them to seat 61
deputies in parliament, and their votes are sufficient to elect the
republic's new president (who requires a three-fifths majority of
deputies to take office). Despite the fact that international
observers have declared the elections fair, numerous violations were
noted on election day. Voters were surprised to find on the voting
rolls the names of their dead relatives, as well as the names of
unknown people who had been mysteriously registered as living in their
apartments. There were also cases when election commissions refused to
give people ballots -- because someone had already signed and voted
for them.

The opposition parties publicly disputed the falsified election
results. On Monday evening they held a peaceful protest rally on the
square next to Government House that brought out approximately 5,000
people. On April 7, from twenty to thirty thousand people gathered in
the center of the capital; these were mainly university and high
school students, who came in response to appeals from the opposition
parties. Their principal demand was that the results of the election,
which they believed had been falsified, be overturned, and new
elections be held. Opposition leaders very quickly lost control of the
crowd. The authorities, who had not anticipated such massive protests,
had posted insufficient numbers of policemen to guard the buildings of
the parliament and the presidential administration; they were simply
swept away by the enraged crowd. The police -- who in 2008
"heroically" dispersed protests by pensioners unhappy with their
miserly pensions (lower than the minimum living standard) -- proved
powerless against the young people. Despite attempts by
representatives of the opposition parties to prevent acts of
vandalism, their appeals were simply ignored. The pogromists smashed
all the windows on the first two floors of Parliament and the
Presidential Palace. Both these buildings were looted; furniture and
documents were torched. Two stories of the Parliament were completely
gutted by fire, and two police vans were burned. The damage amounts to
millions of lei. The main propaganda force in these protests were
members of the nationalist parties. It was they who chanted "Down with
the communists!" and raised the flags of Romania and the EU over the
Parliament.

In his address to the nation, President Voronin characterized these
advents as a coup, and he laid all the blame for the events on the
leaders of the Liberal Party, the Liberal Democratic Party, and Our
Moldova Alliance. That same day, PKRM representative Marian Lupu met
with the leaders of these parties. In a neutral albeit admonitory
tone, he asked them to cease all protests and engage in dialogue
within the bounds prescribed by law. The opposition leaders repeated
their demands for new elections, and they blamed the authorities and
the police for what had happened. According to the opposition leaders,
it was their actions that had provoked the riots.

In light of the current situation, Rezistenta Populara makes the
following statement. We fully recognize the fact that the ruling party
falsified the election results. It is losing support amongst the
masses, and it has attempted to compensate for this lack of support
through falsification in order to remain in power. (For the bourgeois
grouping who backs the party, this is quite important.) However, the
PKRM's influence is still quite great, and a significant number of
voters did in fact vote for this party insofar as the other parties
represent the interests of even more odious bourgeois groupings.
Unfortunately, seduced by the PKRM's promises to preserve an illusory
"stability," voters from the masses of workers and the poor did not
use their chance to vote for the working-class candidate from
Rezistenta Populara. The central plank of our platform was
organization of the workers' struggle for their rights.

The events in Chisinau are a reflection of the struggle amongst the
main groupings of the bourgeoisie over the redistribution of property
and state power. The PKRM is supported by the state bureaucracy, which
is wavering in this situation (the party has had no principled
activists in its ranks for a long time). The opposition is supported
by young people (mainly Moldovan speakers) unhappy with the system.
The campaign platforms of these parties are indistinguishable. Both
the PKRM and the opposition support rapidly integrating with the EU
and continuing the liberalization of the economy. However, a defeat
for the PKRM would destroy the party, which over the course of the
past eight years has discredited the idea of communism. The young
people who chant "Down with the communists" quite sincerely believe
that communism equals the Voronin regime. His clan owns the factories,
banks, transportation, IT, and telecommunications companies, and it is
under his regime that a police state has been established in Moldova.
President Voronin is Moldova's chief "communist," but his son is one
of the republic's biggest capitalists, a billionaire. And yet our
country is the poorest state in Europe.

Rezistenta Populara condemns the acts of vandalism, which have caused
enormous damage to public property. However, we believe that blame for
this is shared both the leaders of the opposition, who failed to keep
the protests peaceful, and the authorities, who were unable to provide
the necessary security for the parliament and presidential
administration buildings. It is likely the case that, not entirely
sure whether police units were loyal to him, Voronin was simply afraid
to give orders to take more decisive action, just as was the case
twenty years ago, when he was the interior minister of the Moldovan
Soviet Socialist Republic.

We believe that the protests also have a definite social subtext. Most
young people feel abandoned and unwanted by society in the new period
of "stability" that has been established by the regime. During an
"interview" with journalists from PRO-TV in the looted parliament
building, one of the young marauders said, "I'm twenty now. What will
I have in this country by the time I'm thirty? Nothing!" In essence,
the universities are diploma mills for gastarbeiters, who will replace
their parents on construction sites in Moscow and Italy.

In the current situation, Rezistenta Populara's main task is to
provide a class-based explanation for what is happening. We argue that
there is no principal difference between the PKRM and the opposition;
that we need to fight not for one bourgeois against another, but in
order to get rid of them all. It is capitalism that is to blame for
everything: it throws people into the trash heap; it deprives them of
work and the means of existence or turns them into beasts of burden.
The only solution is for workers to unite in the struggle for their
class interests -- for a decent wage, pension or stipend; for an end
to the privatization of public property; for the nationalization of
the principal means of production and the banking system. In the end,
for socialism!

April 8, 2009

http://www.rezistenta.info
(in Russian and Romanian)




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