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ByDumitru

Bordeianu

TESTIMONIES FROM THE SWAMP OF


DESPERATION

Dedicated to our Captain - Corneliu Zelea Codreanu1, to Mota and


Marin, and to all martyrs and heroes in the Legion, killed in
persecutions, interrogatories, in gulags and prisons, or killed in
..other cirumstances, within the Country or in Exile.

Tobe erunderstandthisbookyouneedtolearnabout"TheLegionofTheArchangelMichael"

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As a Preface

WithfearofGodIwritethesethingstoyou,myfaithinHim
beingendless,unlimited,andOnlyHeknowsthatwhichIwrite
hereistrue.Ialsowritethistestimonyforourbrothersstillalive,
whodidnotsueraswesuered,studentsandworkers,andfor
allthosewhowillcomeaerus.
IalsowritefortheoneswhotrulybelieveinGod,thosehonest
andofgoodfaith,forthemtoknowandunderstandwhat
communismistrulycapableof:ofhowmuchhateandliesand
bestialcrueltythisideologywas,andiscapableofthe

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communistideology,whichcamenot omGod,but omthe


devil.
Indeed,itstraitsareoppositeofLove,Truth,LightandMercy
hate,lies,darkness,andcruelty.
CommunismrepresentsSatanonEarth.Thecommunists
exaltedtheirideologycommunismtotherankofReligion,
which,incontrasttotheChristianfaith,isthereligionofhate,
thereligionoflies,andofmurders,whichareexaltedtotherank
of"virtues"inthisreligion.Anditcanonlyspreadthroughlies,
distrust,terrorandfear.

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Onthespiritualside,itsroleistodehumanizeman,onthe
materialsideitsroleis:tobringmisery,hungerandthe
shortageofeverythingincludingbasenecessities.
Howelsecanyouexplainsomuchhatred,cruelty,cynicismand
sadisticpleasureintorturingandmurderingyourfellowman?
Incommunism,youmustdoasyouaretold,wantitornot.You
mustn'tthink,ordiscern,willandliberty( eedom)aregone.
Andifyoudon'tconformtotherules,therearedierent
methodsfortheirconsolidationofpower:gulags,prisons,
"camps",canals,deportations,homearrestsanddegradation,
therapingofyourconscience,thelossofhumandignity,andin

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theend,thelossofallcapacityofthought,thesubjectfollowing
whateverordergiventohim/her.
Thus,communismbecameasagodonearth.Andwhoeverwas
caughtinthissatanicreign,lostalloftheirdiscerning
capabilities,theirwillsandtheir eedoms,remaininghungry,
cold,humiliated,lonely,andgnashingtheirteethindespair.
Thus,inPitestiandGherla,themen,whowerereceivingthe
communistreeducationtreatments,beingalteredandde
graded,beingtortured,andatthesametime,beingforcedto
torturetheirfellowmen,losttheiridentities,becausetheirsouls,
theirmindswereshakensomuch.Theylosttheirhumanity.

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Inthesespecialinterrogations,youwereforcedtoadmitthings
youdidnotdo,forcedtosayGoddoesn'texist,inotherwords
betrayGod.Theseinterrogationsservedapurpose:perverting
themindoftheindividualsubjectedtothem,oratleast
weakeningtheirwills.Also,theperversionoftheChristian
conceptregardinglifeandtheworld,andthehumiliationofthe
humanbeingthesearethingswhichneedtobetold.
Intheseordeals,thetruenatureofamanisbroughttothe
surface.Intheseordeals,heiseitherdegradinghimself,or
perfectinghimself.

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ButthetribulationsoftheMovementinthosetimesinPitesti
andGherla2aretheharshestofalltribulationstheMovement
wassubjectto,tothisday.
TheArchangelMichael'sLegionisuniqueinhistory,asisthis
case.We,theLegion'smembers,didnotghtwithourown
weaknessesorpeopleintheseordeals,butwithdevilpossessed
people,thrownuponuswithallthehatred,thecynicismandthe
crueltytheywerecapableofinictinguponus.
ThePitestiGherlaphenomenonisnotonlyspecial,butmystical
aswellbecauseaba leragedthere:theba lebetweenthose
whoservedGodandthosewhoservedsatan.

Communistprisons

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Thesetestimoniesdon'tpretendtobeveryliterary.Theyare
pieces omthesoulsofsomeyoungghters,honestwith
themselvesandhonestwithGod;youngmenandwomenwho
puteverythingtheyhadgoodinthemintheghtforjustice,
eedomandfaith.
Fullyrealizingtheirroletobeplayedinhistory,theyservedthe
nationandChrist'sChurchagainstcommunismthemortal
enemyofChristianityeventotheirdeaths.
Historydoesn'tshowanyrecordsanywhere,ofasimilarcase,as
theoneinvolvingtheyoungLegionmemberssueringhorrors
likethoseinPitestiandGherla.

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Inthepersecutionsandprisonssueredbylegionnairesduring
thesocalledRomaniandemocracy,thenbytheonesunderthe
dictatorshipofCarolthesecondandAntonescu,theconscience
oftheonebeingpersecuteddidnotsuertoo,itwasn'traped.
ButinthetorturesandhorrorswhichtookplaceinPitestiand
Gherla,theyacteddirectlyandmethodicallyupontheonebeing
tortured,forhisfaithinGodtobesha eredrst,thenhisideas
oftheworldandlifeaswellashispoliticalconvictions.
InthesetestimoniesIwon'taccuseanypoliticalprisoner.Idonot
havetheauthority,thestandingandtherighttodoso,asone
whosueredallthatIsueredmyself,butIwilltestifytothe

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eventsexactlyastheytookplacewithalltheyoungmeninthe
LegioninPitestiandGherla.
Iwon'ttellyouaboutmyheroicdeeds,butothers'heroicdeeds.
Thosewhowillreadtheselineswillaskthemselveswhydidn'tI
talkaboutthepeople omtheotherpoliticalcategoriespresent
inthoseprisonsit'sbecause:Idonothavetheauthority,
standingorrighttotalkandwriteaboutothers,because,ifI
would(likeothersdid,whoneverevenwentthroughPitestiand
Gherla)Iwouldhavetoaccusesome,andexcuseothers.And
then,mytestimonieswouldnotbewri eninthefearofGod.The
people omtheotherpoliticalpartieswhowentthroughPitesti

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andGherla,havetherighttotalkaboutwhathappenedtothem
too.
Iwilltalkonlyofmybrothersandmyself,andeachshouldtalk
abouthisown.
ItalkaboutmyownbecauseIamalegionnaireandtheywere
legionnairestoo.Thesoulsofthedepartedpushmewrite,to
writeeverything,asithappenedwhoinitiated,whowasthe
leader,whoaretheguilty(whowereconvincedtheywillnotsuer
theconsequencesfortheiractions),whoexecutedtheplan,who
weredeceivedandwhowerethevictimsofthisneverbeforeseen
drama.
Dumitru Gh. Bordeianu
Melbourne, 26 oct. 1989
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CLARIFICATIONS
ABOUT THIS BOOK
(interview with Dumitru Bordeianu; excerpt taken from the Magazine

"Scara" [eng. The Ladder], the fourth step)

AnessentialthingaboutmybookisthefactthatIdidnotfeel
worthyofwritingit.However,immediatelyaerthecommunist's
interrogationsstopped,Somethingthatcame omoutsideofmy
being,wasalwaysaskingme:whoiscapableofwritinga
testimonyaboutthisdrama?Andnotonlywriteaboutit,butto
knowtheessenceofthisdrama.

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Aermyrelease,Iread"TheDemons"byDostoyevsky.The
dierencebetweenthosedemonsinDostoyevsky'sbookandthe
onesatPitesti/Gherlais:thersthad eedom,butthela er
weredeprivedof eedomanddeprivedofeventhemostbasic
necessities.Plus,theyweresubjectedtounimaginabletortures,
bothphysicalandmoral.
AerItoldmystorytoagreatRomaniantheologian,headvised
metoread"TheLivesoftheSaints"andthenIwould
understand.Ialwaysunderstoodthattheonewhowasmost
capableofwritingaboutthisdramawasCostacheOprisan,but
hewasmurderedinprison.Othercharacteristicsofmy
testimonyarethefactthatImyselflivedthroughthisdespairto
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agreatextent.Ifhumilityisopposedtopride,andoneleadsyou
toHeaven(blessedarethosepoorinspirit)andtheotheroneto
Hell,youcanseewhattherewardis.Myunworthiness
(humility)wasrewardedByGod.Hedestinedmetoliveand
writeaboutthesethings,thisdrama.Mytestimoniesare
metaphysical.Himwhoisnotantichristianandfamiliarwiththe
livesofthesaints,knowsandunderstandsmytestimonies.
Iwillnowtrytoexplainhowthisbookcameintobeing.Firstof
all,IwouldliketomentionthatIwasmaintaininga
correspondencewithHoriaSima,whoindeedwastellingmeto
writeaboutwhathappenedtomeintheprisons.ButIthought
totelltheCommanderIcannotdothis.Imean,Iwasthinking,
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youcouldn'twriteaboutthehorrorswhichtookplaceatPitesti
andGherlawithouttheproperinspiration.Ijustdidnotfeel
capableofdoingthat.
HowdidIbecomecapable?InthevicinityoftheplacewhereI
livedrightaerIarrivedhereinAustralia,youcanndacreek
whichIinstantlyrecognizeditwasthecreekIdreamedof
si ingby,alone,writing,onthetimewhenIwasstillin
Romania,inthecountry.Andanideacomestomymind:
fastingandprayer.Istartedfastingandprayingafewweeks
almost...Iwouldgonearthecreekandinstantlymymindwould
enlighten:itwasalllikeamovieinmymind,ofallthat
happened,rolling,asifitwouldbehappeningrightnow.In
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general,whenyouarewritingabook,youhaveanideaofhow
theendingwouldberight ombeforeyoustartwritingit.Inthis
case,Ididnotevenmadeasketchofitall,noplan.AndIstarted
rightwiththetitle:"Testimonies omtheswampof
desperation".AndtherstphraseisalsotheBook'slabel.It'sa
BookofDivineInspiration:IwrotewhatIwastoldtowrite,that
whichIfeltandthatwhichcametomymemory.Everyday, om
9a.m.inthemorningto3p.m.intheaernoon,Iwasdictating
alltheseevents,andmywifewaspu ingthemdownonpaper.
ThewritingtookplacebetweenFebruaryDecember1990;
almost600pagesintotal.Butthedenitiveformistheone
beingpublished.Inshort,Iamtheonethroughwhomallthese
factshavebecomeknown.UnlimitedfaithinGodmakes
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everythingpossible.PetreTuteasaidthatanyculturewho
doesn'tincludeTheologyinit,isdoomed,itsnotworthtwo
pennies.Theremaybebookswithsomehumanvalue,butthey
areworthzerobecausetheydonottestifyaboutGod.
Wherethereisnotemptation,thereisnovirtue,theholyfathers
said.Christianvirtueisonlytestedinordeals.Godallowed
communismtobeinRussiaforareason.Goddidnotallow
communismtoappearinGermanyorEnglandforinstance.
Nothinggoesonintheseenorunseenworldwithoutthe
knowledgeandwillofGod.Russia'sstatepoliticsandthe
RussianorthodoxChristianityarenotthesamething,don't
confuseonewiththeother.Andyes,IamreferringtothatSlavic
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faith,thatmanwhoisalwaysonthesame equencywithChrist.
Here,inRussia,therearemillionsofmartyrs,victimsof
bolshevism.HereisanexampletoldbyfatherDimitrieBejan,
whomettheonlysurvivor omthose11.000martyrsatOranki.
Themonksweregiventhreedaystomakeuptheirminds,to
choosebetweencommunismandChristJesus.Theymadeup
theirmindsin10minutes.Andthen,foronemonththeywere
diggingtheirgraves,aerwhichtheywerebeingexecuted.And
Godwantedoneofthosetoescapeandtelltheirstoriesi.Hereis
TheDivineWork.Thebishoptoldhismonks:"Brothers,the
timehascomeforyoutotakethemartyr'scrown;areyouwith
satanorareyouwithJesusChrist?"Thefaiththesepeoplehad!
Notonedeserter!Isawwithmyowneyes,atCotulDonului(near
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Predeal,Romania),inthewartime,howtheRussianswere
digginguptheicons,hidden omthefuryofcommunism,and
theycriedforjoy,kissingthem.
WhydidArseniePapacioc3talkwithsuchadmirationabout
thoseyoungmenwhostooduptothetanksinDecember1989?
Becausethenationsandpeoplesdon'tlivebecauseofcowards.
GoddidnotdesertusinthetimeoftheBolshevikdominion
either.WhowasnotindirectrelationshipwithGod,mindand
heart,couldnotanddidnotdoanything.Theverticalcoordinate
isalwaysGod.Communismisonlyapreludeofthatcoming
antichrist.ThisiswhyGodallowedcommunismtocomeforthe
wheattobesied.Wesawwholosttheirfaithandwhodidnot
losetheirfaith.WecanseetheresultsofGod'slove;Godloved

13August1914-19July2011;ArseniePapaciocwasaRomanianorthodoxChris anmonk.Hewaslockedawayin
thecommunistprisonsofRomaniaalongwiththeothers.HewascondemnedbythemarshalAntonescu,in1941,
forhisadherencetotheArchangelMichaelsLegion.

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andlovesussomuch,thatwecannotevenimagine.Andbecause
thesemartyrsournationcouldberedeemed.Inprison,mostof
themretainedtheirfaith.Maybemanyofthemdidnotbelieveso
muchinGod,buttheywereanticommunist.BecauseBlessed
arethosewhoarepersecutedbecauseofrighteousness,fortheirs
isthekingdomofheaven.
Ineverwantedtoleavemycountry.Ididhavetheopportunityto
leave,then,whenIwasyoung,withtheGermanArmy,atOrsova.
Again,Ihadtheopportunity,inMay1948.IlandedinAustralia
leadbymydestinyhere.WhenIsay"destiny",Idon'tmeanpre
destination,orfate,orfatality.Ofcourse,God,WhoIsEternal,
knowsbeforehandwhatmusthappenwithus.Butthisisnot
predestination.Destiny,youcanexplainitlikethis:The
relationbetweenme(thecreature)andMyCreator(God).I
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cannotrebelaslongasIknowthis.Itisama erofcommon
senseaswell.ForthosewhosayGoddidnotmakethem,thatisa
problem.ButI,knowingthatGodmademe,andnot..nature,I
havetorecognizeandbesubjectToTheCreator.Ofmy eewill,
becauseHegaveme eedom.Satanalwayssayshedoesnotwant
toserveHim.Wemustnotlosesightofourweaknessandalso
God'sPower.ButwhenIamsubjectToTheCreator,Hetakesmy
weaknessonHisShoulders.Ionlyhavetosay:"YourWillBe
Done".Thisistheessence.
Now,abouttheWest,Ialreadyhadabadimpressionsincethen
whenIwasyoung;concerningfaith,Ialreadyknewwhatthe
faithwasalllikeintheWest,beforeIimmigrated.This
Liberalism,broughtbythecatholics,whodon'tbelieveinThe

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Resurrection...Here,inAustralia, omaneconomicalstand
pointitsbe er,becausetheirgodismoney.
NowconcerningPitesti,everythingwasdoneespeciallytodestroy
theLegionsmembers.ThisishowGodwantedtobe,this
generationofyoungpeopletogothroughallthisneverbefore
seendrama.ThePitestiPhenomenonwasmadeforthemembers
oftheLegion.Inthetimeoftheinterrogations,almostallwho
weren'tmembersofTheLegioncrossedovertoTurcanu4'sside.
TheghtbetweenGoodandevilstartedwhenSatanrebelledin
Heaven,againstGod.Afaithfulpersonbecomeseverydaymore
perfectandbecomeseverydaymorelikeGod,it'saconstant
climbtowardsGod.ThosewhorecognizeGodastheirCreator,
theydoHisbidding,keepHisCommandmentsandhe/sheis

oneofthosewhoacceptedtotorturetheRomanianChristians;hewastakingorders

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omthecommunists

calledtobepartofTheKingdomofHeaven.Theothers,
unfaithfulbunchandservantsofsatan,theygodowneachday.
HowcomethatGodallowsthesetolive?Satanisallowedtogoto
thelastlevelofwickednesstheantichrist,themanofsin.Then
GodwilldrawthelineandtheFinalJudgmentwillcommence.
ThisbookisnotabookofLegiondoctrine;ofcourse,itiswri en
byalegionnaire,wholiveslikealegionnaire.Itisnotabookof
legionnairedoctrine,butabookaboutliving.Thebookexplains
aphenomenonwhichconcernstheSaintArchangel'sLegionand
itisaddressedintherstplacetomybrothersandtothosewho
willcomeaerthem.WhathappenedinPitestiismorethana
dramaanextraordinaryexperiment,donebycommunistsand
atheists.Forthela er,youcanunderstandwhyitwouldbean
inconvenienceforthetruthtosurface.Because,youcanimagine,
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withoutthisPitestidrama,wewouldstillbeintheprison,
becausenoneofuswouldgiveup.Noonecouldshakeus.They
startedtheexperiment,butnotwithwiththeirownhands,but
havingsomeoneelsedoitinsteadofthem,M.A.F.I.A.way.Of
course,theydidnotknowtheresultsbeforehandhowmanywill
goinsane,howmanywillremainsane,howmanywillkill
themselves,etc.Becauseitalldependsonthehumansoul.There
weresixindividuals,executioners,whoacceptedandstartedit
all.NotevenTurcanuknew omthebeginninghowitallwould
degenerate,whatitwoulddegenerateinto.Theupperrankswere
notpartoftheLegion:Iordachescu,Dobos,Leonida,andothers.
Theyrepresented10percentofthepopulation,andwewerelike
90percent.Allthesemurderersacteduponthesoul,through
physicaltorture.TheReeducationwaspreparedbytheMoscow
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occult,RomanianoccultandInternationaloccult,forthe
membersoftheArchangelMichael'sLegionMovement.Horia
Simatoldmethattheirobjectivewastodestroythepopulace
omwhencetheLegiondrewitsmembers,thusdestroyingthe
foundationoftheMovement.Becausetheessenceofcommunism
isasfollows:theeradicationoftheideaofGod omtheheartof
theman,thusleavinghimvulnerabletoanyotheridea,making
himeasytomanipulate,likealeafinthewind,sosatantakes
youwhereverhewantstotakeyou.Theterrorwasevenmore
ighteningduetothefactthatitwasdonetous,byus,through
ourownbrothers,membersoftheLegion,Christians.When
yourenemycomes,youghthimasbestasyoucan,depending
onyourstrength.Buthere,wewouldhavetoghtourown
brothers,Christians.TheChristianmartyrswerejustthem
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againsttheenemytheyweren'ttorturedbyotherChristians.In
ourcaseitwasn'tjustaboutle inggoofyourfaith,butthefact
thatyourownbrothertorturedyou.WhatImeanisonemoment
wearesi ingtogetherlikebrothers,andtomorrowyoukillme,
justlikethat,me,whowascapableofpu ingmylifeontheline
foryou.Thisisthemetaphysicalaspectofthesituation.Thiswas
thegreattest.Themanwhogotconfusedforevenasecond,was
lost.ThedevilcannottemptyoumorethanGodwantshimto
temptyou.Godknowsourstrength.
Beingtortured,IwouldsayIwasn'tpartofTheLegionany
longer,thoughIremainedpartofit.Butconcerningthefaith,it
wasn'tenoughforyoutosayyoudonotbelieveanymore,you
hadtoproveitaswell,killingyourneighborwithoutmercy.But
howcanyoukillyourbrother,whenhescreamsbecauseofthe
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pain!IsaidIwasn'tpartofTheLegionbecauseofthepressure,
butHoriaSimadidnotsayIamnotpartofitanymore.Inalong
lastingordealeachofusheldonasmuchashecould.Eachsoul
lastedaslongashecould.ItoldthemIdidnotprayanymore.I
brokethecovenantwithGod.Ishouldhavelastedlonger.And
thisisthepossession.Godwantedmetopassthroughthis
ordeal.EvenifIhadallthisEarthinmypossessionfor1000
years,withmystateofmindbackthen,fearofunknown,fearof
goinginsane,Iwouldhaverefusedallthatformypeaceofmind.
Iwasputtothetestfor4years.Icouldnotcryanymorethisis
becauseIsaidIdonotprayanymore.Ibrokemyself omGod,
andpossessionfollowed.

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Iknewtheterrorofcommunism;allofusfeltit,whenthe
eedomwasabolished.Inprisonyouwerechained; eedomwas
nulliedunderallaspects.Theywantedtonotonlydestroythe
ArchangelMichaelsLegionasapoliticalparty,andtheyuseda
methodwhichtheyprobablywillperfect.Weallknowthatwars
arefoughtwithyoungmen.Youngmen,youcannotfoolso
easily,becausetheyarenotcorruptedbysin.Turcanudidthe
followinghekeptlesabouteachoneoftheseyoungmen
whenandiftheylied,whattheysaid,howeachoneofthem
actedincertainsituations.Yes,satanisveryclever,andtothose
whoservehim,heslipsthemideas,hissatanicintelligence,which
theyusedatthePitestiexperiment.Andit'snotabout

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brainwashingeither,butsatanicpossessionwhichtransforms
peopleintorobots,likeinAmerica,orhere,inAustralia.
There,intheprison,thesatanicspiritwasoatingintheair.
Thousandsofdemonswereoatingthroughtheair.Anegative
inspirationstimulatedyourmemoryandyouwouldremember
everything,sinceyouwereachild.IntheChristianworld,those
whosaybadthingsaboutGodarecalled"Apostates".Turcanu
acceptedeverythingthatheacceptedtodo,knowingwhathe
does.
Butmymistake,whichIshalladmitAtTheJudgmentDay,is
thatIpubliclysaidIdon'tprayanymore.And omthatmoment
on,Ididnotpray,severingmyconnectionwithTheCreator.My
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GuardianAngeldidnotleaveme,eventhoughIwaspossessed
bythesatanicspirit,whichmanifesteditselfbymakingmevery
a aid,akindofmetaphysicalfear,unimaginableterror.If
someonementionedthedeviltomethen,Iwouldgetterried.
Thesameiftheymentionedepileptics.Iwasn'treallya aidof
Turcanu,butIwasa aidnottogoinsanebecauseofthe
tortures.AertwoyearsIstartedprayingagain,butitwasin
vainitseemed:Ididnotfeelanything.Theywerealllikeempty
wordsamechanicalprayer.Andthistormentedmethemost.
ForawholeyearIwastormentedbywhatIstatedthenaboutnot
prayinganymore,andthatIdonotbelieveinGod.Andallthis
lasteduntilImetJimboiu,thismanlivedinastateofsainthood

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anangelwiththefaceofaman,andthismadeitimpossiblefor
metoevenlookhimintheeyes.
MylifewasimpossibleaboutuntiltheEasterof1954,whenGod's
Mercyintervened.Thatnight,mypatiencewasatitslimits,and
inmydespair,IfeltlikeIwastorturedinmyownprivateHell.I
said:God,Icannotdoitanymore.Dowithmeasyouplease!
AndinthemomentwhenIheardthechurchbellsringing,Ifell
onmyknees,andIstartedweeping,askingGodforforgiveness.
And omthatmomenton,Ibecameadierentperson,another
manentirely.Goddidthiswonderfulthingwithme.Iphysically
felthowthissatanicforceleme.Icriedforanhourwithout
interruption.Iwasphysicallyexhausted,buthappytoo!Itwas
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myhappytime,myownresurrection,infaith.ItwaslikeIhad
defeatedallHell.Theprisonyearsstillle,between1954and
1963(whenIwasreleased),werepieceofcake,evenwithallthe
hardshipsIendured:cold,hunger,andisolation.
Thoseoutside,whowerealive,didnotinterestmeanylonger.I
personallybrokeowiththeoutsideworld;Ididnotthinkatthe
outside,becauseIneededtoadapttoprisonlife,thelifeof
incarceration.Them,theoneswhotorturedus,didnoteven
realizetheeviltheyweredoinganymore.Theyweresopossessed,
thatAlltheywerethinkingofwastogetoutofthatprisonand
becomesomethinginthestate,tohavearoleintheCentral
Commi eeorStateSecurity,asareward omthemasterforthe
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"work"theydidforhim.Theywereexecutingtheordersofthe
masterandtheydidnotthinktostop.ForinstanceDeac,who
wasaboxer,gaveyouthenishingblowbycrushingyourliver.
Himandothers,likeLeonidaandCostachescu,theyhad
increasinglycruelmethods,astimewenton,asourresistance
grewstronger.Apartofthemkilledthemselvesaertheygotout
ofprison.Theydidnothavemercyorloveanymore.Butonly
hate,thatofthelowestformandego.Themostimpressive
thing,sincethebeginningofmyincarceration,wasourbond,me
andmycomrades.Ipersonallygrewa achedtomybrothersin
sueringandnotonlythemembersofourLegion(thosewho
wereopposingcommunism).Manyofthoseintheprisonwere
likeAngels.Themanwhoimpressedmethemostwas
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ConstantinOprisan.Wewereputinthesamecellforanyear.He
wasamanofextraordinarycomplexity,whoknewthings oma
varietyofdomains, ommusic,arts,tomathematicsand
philosophy.Hewasveryloving,helivedhislifetothemaximum.
Hewassubjectedtothegreatesttorture,takingabeatingfor
eachmemberoftheLegion,andheresistedthelongest,withun
equaledvalor.
Anotheryoungman,whomIonlyhadtooccasiontosee,was
ValeriuGafencu,nicknamedas"TheSaintofThePrisons".At
TarguOcnaeachtimehelookedintotheeyesoftheexecutioners
heturnedthemintolambs.Andtheywerethetoughestthere
were;noteventheprisonwardencouldlookhimintheeyes.His
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warmsoulinuencedyousomuch,thatwhoeverknewhim,was
drasticallychangedaerthat.
IonlymetJimboiu,aloyalstudentofGafencu.Hesaidtheprayer
ofthehearttoo,livedonlybythisrule:loveforothers.Hehad
extraordinarykindnessandclarityofmind;youdidnothear
omhimasinglewordofrevengeorhatred.Anangelinthe
bodyofaman.Ioncewastherewhentheyhadtomakeatooth
extractiononJimboiu,withoutanesthetic.Thisextractiontook
verylong,buthedidnotmakeasoundoramove.BadeaTrifan
alsoimpressedmeverymuch,whowasthechiefofthecityof
Brasov.Hehadsomuchkindnessandpeaceinhissoul.He
alreadyhad22yearsofhissentencedone.IntheHolyWeek,he
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wouldcrysomuch,riversoftears,continuously,tilltheNightof
TheResurrection.2000yearshadpassed,andhecriedwiththe
samepassionthatHismother,Maryandthewomenthat
followedHim,criedwith.
ThePrinceAlexandruGhicaIknewverywell,si ingbesidehim
inthesamecell.HewasatrueChristianalso,livinginthefaith
atveryhighintensity.IcanalsomentionGiogaParizianu(who
wasputinsideanovenat70Celsius),MirceaNicolau,Berzea,
Petrascuandmanyotherswhoevenbecamepriestssomeof
them,aertheirprisonrelease.SomeofthemImetagainwhenI
ewbacktoRomania.Allthesepeopleareofextraordinary
moralvalue,theywillsurelyenterinthenation'smoral
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patrimony,amongthosewhosuered,countedworthyamong
thepeopleintheirnation.
InRomaniaI'vemetmanyyoungmenandwomen,with
dierentoccasions(interviews,literarysoiree's);Icansurelysay
thatIlivedextraordinarilyhappymoments.IcouldseeIwasnot
talkinginvain.Therewerestudents omalloftheuniversities
younghonestmen,drawntheretogetherbytruefaith.Iwentto
agatheringof"SCARA"Magazine,wheresome20youngmen
participated.Iwasbeinginvitedtotalktothem.Iwasvery
emotional,astateofmindwhichwastransmi edtothe
participantsaswellIbelieve.

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Godwon'tforsakethisnation,HisPeople;thepersonwhowill
revitalizetheArchangelMichael'sMovementmustappear."A
manandanationareman,andnation,aslongasthey
understandtheGospel"Mehedintiusedtosay).5
ItisclearthattherevitalizationofRomaniaisthereturnto
Christ.Thisphenomenonalreadyhasbegun;theelectinthis
nationwillreturntoChristandHisChurchandwilllivethelove
Heinspiredustohavenotonlyforour iends,butforour
enemiesaswell.TheChurchesarefullofyoungmenandwomen
whereverIgo.Godwon'tforsakethisnation.Forthesehewill
havemercy.So,nottheeconomyreforms,butthefaithofthe
Romanianpeoplewillgetthecountryoutitsdecay.

"THERE SHALL COME THE ROOT OF JESSE, AND HE WHO ARISES TO RULE OVER THE GENTILES, IN HIM SHALL

THE GENTILES HOPE." [Romans 15:12]

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Foreword
Theauthorofthisbook,Testimonies omtheSwampof
Desperation,Mr.BordeianuGh.Dumitru,askedmetowriteon
theprefaceofhisbook.
Ididnotdaretohonorhiswish,thankstoasentimentofgreat
humility.HowcanIwritemynameonthe ontpageofabook
whichquakesyouwiththethingsittestiesabout?
Imyselfhavebeenthroughmanyordealsandmanyofmy
comradessuered,beingpersecutedincampsandprisons,
underthecommunistregime,butthePitestidramasurpasses
anyimagination.Onlydevilishsouls,onlythepervertedmindsof
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thepowerofevil,onlytheinstrumentsofhellcouldhave
imaginedandputinpracticethisstringofhorrors.Totorture
thehumanbeingsomuchthattheydon'thaveachoicebutto
die,ortobeassimilatedintocommunismandkillingwhatis
goodinthem,thatwhichismadeintheImageofGod,is
somethingwhichisnotallowed.
DumitruBordeianuisoneofthosesurvivorsofPitesti.Whathe
writesisnothearsay,buthisowntestimony, omtheswampof
desperation,ashecallsthisterriblepersecution.Otherauthors
haveindeedwri enaboutPitestiaswell,butallthosearewri en
omwhattheyheard.Idon'tsaythosearen'tvaluable,butIdid
notholdinmyhandabookwhichreallycandescribethethings
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whichtookplaceatPitesti,untilnow.Tocry omyourownesh
andbloodaboutthetormentsyouweresubjectedto,isa
testimonywithoutanyneedforcomment.BordeianuDumitruis
atestiertothetruth,towhatreallywentoninbetweenthe
wallsofthatfactoryofdeath,bothphysicalandmoral.
DumitruBordeianualsosetsanotherfacttobeaccurate,toldby
otherauthorsandmagazinewriters,thatthehorrorsatPitesti
werespearheadedbythecommunistagendatowardstheyoung
Romanianmenandwomen,students,theybeingconsideredasa
body,organization.Inreality,indeed,astheauthorofthese
testimoniestellsus,thecommunistwrathwasdirectedtowards

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theyoungmenandwomenwhowerepartofTheArchangel
Michael'sLegion, omschoolsanduniversities.
Themurderoustendenciesoftheonesdirectingtheseoperations
omtheshadowwasevenmoreercetowardthoseuniversity
studentsoftheLegionintheirlastyearsoffacultystudy.
Thesedemonicmindssetasobjectivetothemselvestodestroythe
foundationthestudents omwhichtheLegiondrewits
members,mostly.Ifthefoundation omwhichtheLegiondrew
itsmembersgotdestroyed,theLegionwouldsurelybedestroyed
too.ThisexplainswhyinPitestithemostinhumanetreatment
wassetinmotion,ofalltheprisonsonRomaniaatthattime.
Therewasnoescape omit,otherthandyingbeingtorturedor
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bewillingtotortureyourownfellowmen,throughthesame
methodsoftorturebroughtbythecommunistregime.
DumitruBordeianuisn'tthemantotryanderectastatuefor
himselfbasedonthesueringsofothers.Hefellintheswampof
desperationaswell,sueringmoraldefeat.Howexaltinghis
exampletrulyis!AstheCaptainwouldhavesaid:"Youmadea
mistake,youpayandwalkagain,withyourfaceclean".
Letsbowtothememoryofthosewhopreferreddeathover
humandegradation,butletsunderstandthosewhotriedtosave
themselvestoo,withthepricesoughtbytheirexecutioners,aer
theyweresubjectedweeksinarowtothemosthorrictortures.
Horia Sima
December10,1992
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The Activity
Intheautumnoftheyear1946,IwasinIasi,studentofthe
MedicalUniversity,whenIbeganmyactivityintheLegion's
StudentCorp(L.S.C.)oftheUniversityofIasi,andDumitru
Moisiuwasourcommandingocer.
IntherstfewdaysImetallthepeoplewithwhomIwouldserve.
Iwon'tdescribeindetailwhatouractivitywas,upuntilthedate
ofmyarrest.
EachmemberofTheLegionknowswhatthatactivitymeans
ties,information,meetings,discipline,training,couragewhatit
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allcomesdowntois,theght,withoutanycompromises,against
everythingevil.

The Arrest
Inthenightof1415ofMay,1948,thearrestsofmostofthe
legion'smembersbegan,alreadyknownbyAntonescu's6police7.
I,however,escapedthisarrest,becausetheydidnotsearchfor
meinIasi,wheretheydidnotknowmyaddress,butatmy
parents'house,whereIwassoughtbythePoliceinFalticeni.And
thepolicemen,whowantedtobeinthefavorofthenew

6
7

Antonescureignedpriortothecomingofthecommunistregime,hewasaMarshal
ThereisthelyingrumorthatTheLegionwasan -jewish;theyneverhurtanyJew,butAntonescudid

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communistrule,treatedmyparentslikecrap,physicallyabusing
them,intimidatingthemandtellingmymothershewillkissme
dead.
Aerthisday,IleIasi(Iwasintheexamsession)andIhid,
temporarily,atthefamilyofsome iends.
Aerthat,goingbacktoIasi,tobepresentatsomeofmy
universityexamsatleast,oneofmyhighschoolmatesandalso
classmate,whowaslivingnearmyhouse,sharingthesame
yard,denouncedmetothePolice.Soitcametopass,that,inthe
morningof12June1948,Iwasarrestedbytwocommissars(chief
Ciochina,wholaterbecamemyprisonmate),acommissar
adjutantandastreetsergeant,whowasarmedwithamachine
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pistol.Thesecopssearchedforme,atmidnight,atthehouse
whereIlivedasguest,onSaulescustreetno.18.Here,they
threatenedmythreebrotherswiththeirpistols,andaskedthem
whereIwashiding.Aeralmostanhourofthreateningwiththe
pistol,mysmallestbrother,Constantin,only11yearsold,told
themwhereIwas,becausetheytoldhimtheywillshoothimifhe
doesn't,andhebelievedthem.
Immediatelyaer,thepolicemenarrestedallthreeandtook
themtothehousewhereIwashiding.Thereapoliceman
guardedthemwithamachinegun,andtwocommissarsentered
theyard,withtheirpistolsintheirhands.Theirchiefyelledat

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metonottryandrunaway,becausetheyhavemybrotherswith
them.ThenIthoughtaboutmymotherandIsurrendered.
Thereareonceinalifetimemoments,momentsyouliveonly
once.Evennow,itpainsmetorememberthatmyli lebrother,
Constantin,couldn'tlookmeintheeyes.
In ontofthiswholespectacle,whichIcouldn'tbearanylonger,
Itoldthemtoletgoofmybrothers,becausetheydonotknow
aboutmyactivities,andtheydidndme.AerIinsistedawhile,
theyletgoofMihaiandConstantin,butnotAlexandru,the
oldestofthebrothers.Theykepthimalongsidewithme.When

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theysearchedthehousewheremythreebrotherswhere,they
foundsomeofhispoemswri eningreenink.8
FromtheplacewheretheyarrestedmeFlorilor(Flowers)street
no.2neartheYellowValley(RapaGalbena)Hosteluptothe
Police'sHeadquartersontheCopoustreet,itwasntalongway
walk.Itwasdaytimeandtheydidnottiemeup,becausethey
wouldcauseacommotion,andIwaswalkingbetweenthetwo
commissars(theytoldmedontmakeasinglemoveanddont
trytoescapebecauseyouwillbeshotonthespot).Whenwe
arrivedatthepoliceheadquarters,theymadeussitinthe
buildinghall,attheentrance.Inthehallwaytherewerelotsof

greenbeingthecoloroftheArchangelMichael'sLegion

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peoplearrestedandtheystillkeptcoming.Duringthistime,I
hadtheopportunitytoexchangesomewordswithmybrother,
Alexandru.Itoldhimtobetough,andevenifheisinterrogated
andbeaten,tonotsayawordbecauseheriskslifebehindbars.I
alsotoldhimtotellmymothertoforgiveme,andthatitisvery
unlikelyshewilleverseemeagain,ever(whichistrue;shedied
in1962,aerthecolectivization9whenIwasstilldoingtime). In
themeantime,apolicemancomesandtakesoourshoelaces
andourbelts.Mybrother,notknowingtheprocedure,signals
mewithagesture,andIreply:thisispartoftherulesofthe
prison.Whenthepolicemenweren'tpayinga entiontous,I

between 1949-1962, the Romanian communist party(p.c.r.) ordered "the colectivization"- meaning all private
agricultural land was confiscated from all private hands and put into the state's hands. The colectivization in
Romania was done very much like the one in the U.S.S.R
9

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heldmybrotherinmyarms,kissedhim,andthenwesaid
goodbye,for15yearstime.
Theheartbreakandsorrowinthesekindofsituations!Iwas
thentakentoaroomontherstoor,withbarsatthewindows,
where,tomysurprise,ImetcomradesIknew:theengineer
CosticaButan(OcerinReserveandwarinvalid,thechiefofthe
Legion'sstudentsatthePolytechnicsUniversityinIasi)and
LatesMircea(chiefofstationintheUniversityofAgriculturein
Iasi).Irememberedthesetwocomradesofminebecause,aer15
years,whenInishedwithmysentence,wethreeagainmet,in
theroomoftheguardingocerattheAiudprisongate.

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ButtocontinueTherewasanunbearableurinestenchthere,
becausetheinmateswerenttakentothetoilet,thusbeingforced
topeeinsomeemptycansontheoor.
Intheaernoon,atabout45oclock,thecelldooropensanda
commissarwithalistinhishandreads omit,shoutingafew
names.FirstIambeingtakenout,alongwitha iendofmine,
Cojocaru.Wearebeingtieduptogetherwithapieceofrope
(theydidnothaveenoughhandcusforallofus,therewerelike
over500,boysandgirls)andtakeninthebackofthebuilding.
ThereaJeepawaitedus,with4moregirlsinit(students),tiedup
aswell.

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Oneofthepolicemenwarnsustonottryanything,becausewe
willbeshot.Meandmycomrade,Cojocaru,wewerent
impressedatallbythepolicemenandtheirhandguns.Wewere
alreadyverymuchfamiliarizedwithpistols omtheWar;but
the4younggirlswere ightened.

Galata

AerhalfanhourwearriveatGalata,anexmonkmonastery,
transformedintoaprisonandlocatedonahill,WestoftheCity
ofIasi.Herethegirlswereplacedaswell,alongwithus,intoa
biggerroom,withbarredwindows.Aerhalfanhour,sixmore
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girlswerebroughtintothesameroom, omthePolice
Headquarters.Allthistime,Iandmycomradeweretryingour
besttocomfortthem.
Aerali lewhile,thedooropensandthishideouspersonwalks
intotheroom,whodidnotlooklikeamanatall.
Iamtellingyouthis,foryoutoknowandunderstandwhatkind
ofevilhumanoidsthecommunistsusedtotortureusinthe
prisons.
Immediatelyaerthismonsterwalkedintotheroom,hestarted
blabberingwhattheytoldhimorwhatheheardattheParty:
Youarethecriminalswhokilledtheworkingclass,youexploited
it,youkeptitinthedarkandtreateditjustlikeyourslaves,but
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getthisintoyourheads,thisworkingclasswillcrushyouindue
time,weareyourdoom.WordsthatIheard omthemouthof
alltheguardsatalltheprisonsIwentthrough.
Aerhenished,themonstertellsthegirlstoturnwiththeir
facesagainstthewall,undressingmeandmycomrade
completelynaked,checkinginbothendsofourdigestivetubes,
toseeifwehidarmamenttherewiththepurposeofdestroying
theworkingclass.
Aersucceedinginthisoperationandaerwedressedagain,he
tellsustoturnwithourfacesagainstthewall,invitingthegirls
toundresscompletely,likewejustdid.Whentheyheardsucha
thing,thegirlsrespondedenergetically,andoneofthem,athletic
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type,slammedthemonsteragainstthewallwithsuchstrength
thathewasleunconscious.
Seeingthis,theguardtookouthispistolandthreatenedthem
that,iftheydontundress,hewillusehisgun,becausehe
representstheworkingclass.
Inthissituation,meandmycomradeintervened,tellinghimto
holsterhispistol,andwetoldthegirlstoknockinthewindows
andthedoorviolently.Themonster,withtheguninhishand,
insiststhatthegirlswillundressforthesearch.Herepresents
theworkingclassandtohimeverythingisallowed.

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Adeskclerk, omtheprisonadministration,hearingtheknocks
inthedoorandwindows,comesintotheroomandremains
stupeedbecauseofwhatshesees.
Shewasanoldworldclerk,andwasnotyetfamiliarizedwiththe
spiritoftheworkingclass.Findingoutwhatjusthappened,
shereprimandedtheguardandinvitedhimtogetout.Because
theguardrefused,alwayssayingthatheisthemessengerofthe
workingclass,theclerkwenttodenouncehimtotheprison
warden.
Aerali lewhile,theprisonwardenstepsin,andinamild
tone,explainstotheguardthatamancannotsearchwomen,

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butonlyawoman,becausethesearetherulesoftheprison,and
inconclusion,hemustleavetheroom.
Thewardenwasalsosurprisedtoseethatintheroombothsexes
werepresent,givingordersforthemtobeputinseparaterooms.
Whenthenightcame,theprisonwaslledwithprisoners
already.
Onthatdaynofoodwasgiventous.Later,wewereput6by6in
everycell,withoutanykindoftoiletstodoournecessitiesinand
withbedsofbarewoodenboards.Normally,wecouldntatall
tall6peopleintothesamecell,thecellsbeingexmonk
quartersforonlyoneperson,withtheirdooropeningintothe
yard.Andstill,theykeptusintothesecellsforalmost10days.
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AerallthetimeIstoodthere,Icouldntforgetthreeimportant
facts:
Inallthetimewespentthere,Iwasgivenonlyonemealper
day,lunchtime:apieceofbread(some200grams)and
somekindofsoup,butyoucouldntreallytellwhatthat
was.
AtGalata,theymadeeachofuswriteanautobiography.
NotoneofusarresteddeclaredhewasmemberofThe
ArchangelMichaelsLegion.
Attheendofthosetendays,wewereforcedoutofourcells,
lateduringnight,onarainyweather,sometwentyofus,
understrictmilitarysecurity,andtakentoanearby
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cemetery.Itwassodarkoutside,pitchblack,andthosewho
escorteduscarriedlanternsintheirhands.Amongthese,
besidethemilitaryguards,thereweresomecivilianstoo.
Oncewearrivedintothecemetery,manyholes, eshlydug,
wereshowntous,similartothemassgraves.In ontof
thatmacabrescenery,manyofuswereindeedconvinced
thatduringthatnightwewouldbeexecuted.
Iconfess,ifIknewbeforehandwhathorrorsexpectedme
lateron,Iwouldhavepreferreddeathrightthenandthere.
Aeralltheyearsspentinprisonandallthatoccurredat
PitestiandGherlaandlateron,Iconcludedthatthe
momentheroismispreferabletothelonglastingone,

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whichgrindsyou,degradesyou,changesanddestroysyou,
bitbybit.
AsIsattherein ontofthegraves,oneofthecivilianstears
himselfaway omtheothers,andapostrophizesuswith
thesefollowingwords:You,bandits,youarethebiggest
enemiesoftheworkingclass,oftheproletariat;becauseof
thiswearrestedyou,andyouwillbethrowndowninto
theseholes,andnotoneofyouwillmakeitoutalive.We
arentexecutingyouthisnight,becausewedonothave
enoughholesdug,forallofyouarrestednowtotin.But
knowthis:thattheonesarrestedon15thofMaywere
executedalreadyandburiedinthiscemetery.Aerwedig

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enoughholes,thenwewillexecuteyoutoo.Nowbackto
prison.
Whathappenedtous,those20,happenedtoeachoneof
theothergroupsaerafewnightsandtoalltheothersin
theGalataprison,exceptingthegirls.Allofustookthem
seriouslythough,thecommunistsyoucouldexpect
anything omthem.TheKatynMassacre,whereallthose
polishocers(cca.4000)wereshoteach,onebyone,inthe
backoftheirheads.Wewereconvincedofanotherthing:
theBolsheviksonlymoralswereimmorality,pluswewere
neartheriverPrut(closetotheRomanianborderwith
U.S.S.R.).Welivedthosemomentsatsuchhighintensity,

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thatoncetheywerenished,IcouldnottellifIdreamtthis
orifitwasreal.
Backtotheprison,inthecellsIcouldreectbe eronthe
situation.Someofuswereconvincedtheywillshootus,or,
inthehappiestscenario,wewillbetransportedtoSiberia.
Otherswereconvincedthat,iftheydidnotshootusthat
night,thatmeantithadonlybeenanactofintimidation.
Aerthetendayswereover,aerwesatinthatprison,we
weretakenoutofourcells,theytiedourhandswitharope,
twobytwos,andtookusoutsidetheprison,toamilitary
truckcoveredwithcanvas.Weweresome30people.Inthe
trucktheytoldustositonthetruckoorfacedown,
crammedintoeachother,withtheheadontheoor,while
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wewerebeingsurroundedbyarmedsoldiers.Acivilian
warnedusthat,ifweliupourheads,wewillbeshot
withoutwarning.
Oh!Howlongthattripseemedtobe!Itwasthetripoftotal
insecurity.Wethoughtwewillbetakeneithertothe
cemetery,tobeshot,ortobedeportedintoSiberia.The
mostofus,aerwesawourselvesinthetrain,were
convincedthatourdestinationwasindeedSiberia.
So,weweretransportedandcrammedinsomewagons.To
oursurprise,wesawthatthevanwagonswereRomanian
made,eventhoughattheNicolinastationinIasi,wherewe
justle om,thereweresomebiginternationalrailroads,
forRussiantrains.Wewereaskingourselveswheretheyare
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takingus.Iwasthinkingtheyaretakinguswitha
RomaniantraintoVadulSiretului,attheRussianborder,
intheregionofBucovina,inordertohidetheiroperation.
Themoments,theemotions,thestateofmind,in ontof
theunknown!
Aerthewagonswerelled,thetrainle.Wedidnot
recognizethedirectioninwhichweweregoing,duetothe
darknessandtheshu ersonthesmallwindowsofthe
wagon.
AerafewhoursofridinginthetrainIcouldseewehad
justarrivedatPascani,astationIonlyknewsowell.Ithen
toldmycomradesweareinthePascanistation;Isuspected
theyarenttakingustoSiberiaaerall,becausetheycould
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havecrossedintoRussiabyUngheni,closertotheriver
Prut,insteadofcrossingthroughCernauti,andtheyare
takingustotheprisoninSuceava,aprisonwhichIknew,a
biggerprisonthantheoneinIasi.
Aerafewhourswewereincarceratedintothefamous
prisontheunmarkedgravethewaythegenpop
inmates omSuceavachristenedit.ThisPenitentiarywas
secondinsizeinthecountry,aerAiudsprison,andwas
alsobuiltbyTheAustrians.(HereCiprianPorumbescuhad
beenimprisonedanddiedoftuberculosis.)
Theprisonhadtheshapeofasquare,withbasement,
groundoorandtwoadditionalupperoors,interioryard,
andattheexteriorawoodenfence4meterstall,andevery
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50meterstherewasapotpeg,andinitasoldierwitha
machinegun.

SUCEAVA(1)
Cell56/basement

On25June1948,herewearecommi edintheinfamousSuceava
prisonandincarceratedincell59inthebasement,inthenorth
sideoftheprison.ThiscellholdsmemoriesIwillneverforget.
HereiswhereIlivedinuntil15ofJanuary1949.InthiscellIfelt
forthersttimeclaustrophobia,thelossof eedomandthe
painwhichwastheresultoftheconnectionseveredwithmy
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lovedones.ItwashereIfelttheprisonpressureandtheabyss
whichwasopeningin ontofus.
HereinthisprisonIsueredthebeatingsandcrueltiesofthe
interrogations,whichlasteduntilDecember1948.Iwassharing
thiscellwithN.Cojocaru,whoalsohadbeenmycellmateat
Galataprison,withGheorgheEimieadeaconandprofessor
andwithtwoworkers.
Aerafewdays,Ifoundoutsomeinformationaboutotherswho
hadbeenarrestedjustlikeme, omthepeopleingeneral
population,whoweredoingguarddutyonthecorridor,and
omthosewhobroughtusourmeals.Amongthesetherewere
somenicepersonstoo.So,Ifoundoutthatallthosearrested
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starting15May1948untilthetimewecametotheprison,in
June,hadbeenbroughttothissameprison.Andstartingwith
thecitiesVasluiandBacau,andallthecitiesuntilthenorthern
borderofMoldaviaandBucovina,allthosearrested,menand
women,couldbefoundinthissameprison.Theinvestigations
andtrials,forthisregionofthecountrycouldntbedoneatIasi,
becauseIasididnothaveabigenoughprison;thatswhythey
choseSuceavasprison,whichhadmanymoreprisoncellsand
rooms,whereseveralthousandmenandwomencouldbe
incarcerated.Thosearrested omthesouthofMoldaviaregion,
omVasluiandBacauuntilMilcovandTheDanuberiver,were
broughttotheprisonofGalati.

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Ialsofoundout omthegeneralpopulationinmatesthatthey
arethreatenedtokeepeverysecret,noma erhowsmallthat
wouldbe.

The Inquiry

Theinvestigationsdepartmentofthegroundoorwas
comprisedofalmost30cells.Someofthemhadbeenremade
intoocesforthechiefcommissars,brought omtheafore
mentionedcities,eachcommissarbroughtalongwithhis
henchmen,onemorebrazenthanthenext,chosen omthe
scumofallscumofsociety.Thesechiefcommissarscoordinated
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theinvestigationsandsortedthroughthestatementsofthe
inmates.Though,eachoneofthemhadahistorywiththeState
SecuritysomewhattiedintotheLegionnaireMovement:they
werepartoftheexbourgeoisiepolice omthetimesofCarolthe
SecondandAntonescu,andthecommunistregimewasusing
them,asdocileinstruments,becausethemonstrousbeing
knownastheSecurity(Securitatea)hadntyetbeenfoundedat
thattimeandtheregimedidnothaveexpertsinma ersof
interrogation.Theywerescumbags,withnomoralconscience
andfearofGod,whohadbeenservingundernumerousregimes,
havingnothingincommonwithournation.Theyborrowed
themselvestoanenemywhich,aerhemadeuseofthemhowhe
pleased,hadthemtooarrestedandplacedinFaragasprison,
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whereveryoentheyendedupkillingeachother.Thisishow
theirmasterrewardedthem,aertheyservedhimwithsuch
dedication.ThoseinIasiIknewpersonally.
TheLegionnaires omtheMedicalUniversitywerebeing
interrogatedbyanoldandexperiencedchiefcommissar,buthis
nameslipsmymindnow.Ididnothavetoputupwithhim,
exceptafewsituationsandinthelastinterrogation,whenIhad
towritemylaststatementandsignitin ontofhim.
ButIcannotforgethistwohenchmen,bullies,whowere
unimaginablyferocious.
Ialsofoundoutthattheinterrogationswerebeingdoneatnight,
andonlyatnight,asthesunwentdown,untilthemorning
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hours,andthatthebeatingsandtorturesweresoferocious,that
someofthosewhohadbeentorturedweretakenbacktotheir
cellsonstretchers.
Even omtherstfewnights, ominsidemycell,Icouldclearly
hearwailingandmanyfootstepsgoingbackandforth.
BecauseofPopaAlexandru,theairinthecellbecameimpossible
tobear.

POPA ALEXANDRU (TANU)

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Thismanwas omSoroca(Basarabia)andwhadbeen
Alexandru(Sura)Bogdanovicisclassmateatthelocalhigh
school.Popasaidtheyweregoodbuddies.
HewasarrestedthesamedayIwas,inIasi,citywherehewasa
studentinthethirdyearattheAgriculturalUniversity.Fromthe
rstmomentImethiminthecellwestartedtoght.Asaman,
hehadagreatEgoandwasferociouslysadistic.Thetwoworkers
Iwassharingthesamecellwith,experiencedlegionnaires,
faithfulinGodandhavinglotsofcommonsense,toldus,
wheneverPopawasntaround,thatnotonlyhewasnta
legionnaire,butnotevenahumanbeing,beingthedevilhimself.

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Inthecellhewasquiet,payingcarefula entionatwhatothers
weretalkingtoeachother;wheneverheintervenedina
discussion,hehadagreatpleasureofcontradictingthemanhe
discussedwith.HedidnoteverclearlysayifhebelievesinGodor
not.IntheconversationswiththedeaconEimieaboutfaith,he
alwayssustainedthecontrary.Hewas,astheotherscouldtellas
well,veryatheistic.Hisinterrogationlastedafewdays,andyou
couldtellbyhisfacehewasntslappedonce.Noonehadever
askedhimaquestionandhedidnotreplyanythingeither.
Hereareafewobservations,concerningthisindividual,which
madehimsuspicious:

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hegrewfondoftheLegionbecauseofBogdanovicisgreat
personality;
duringhisowninterrogationhewasntbeaten;
hisa itudeinsidethecell,towardsthecomradesandthe
Legion,wasveryquiet,hemadeyoususpecthimatonce;
hehadasmalltimesentence,only7years;
whenthereeducationatSuceavastarted,hewasamongthe
oneswhotortured,alongwithBogdanovici;
atPitestihewasntevenslappedonce,butonthecontrary,he
stoodrightbesideTurcanu,theauthorofBogdanovicisphysical
death;

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hele omPitestitoGherlainthewinterof1950,wherehe
becamethechiefoftheinterrogations;
hewastaken omGherlatoJilavaalongwithTurcanu;
hewaspartofTurcanuscrewbuthewasntexecuted.Itwas
himwhostatedthatthereeducationsatPitestiandGherlahad
beencarriedoutbytheorderthatHoriaSimagavetothe
legionnaires,throughVicaNegulescualie;
hewastheaccusationswitnessinthetrialofVicaNegulescu,
wherehestatedtheabovementioned.(Atthistrial,themerit
belongedtoGheorgheCalciu,whorequested omtheCourtthe
presenceofGeneralNicolski,thechiefofSecurity,withwhom
CalciutalkedatPitesti,andcouldhavebeenanimportant
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defensewitness,andwho,ofcourse,didnotshowup).Aerthis
trial,PopaTanuwasbroughttoAiudandreleasedbeforethe
decreeofAugust1964.
WhenIlethecountry,in1989,helivedinSibiu,wherehe
pretendedtobeanaccountantandwasabigtimeinformer.

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Intherst10daysnoonewascalledattheinterrogations.Ihad
timetothink,toputmythoughtsinorder,whatdoIwriteand
whatIdontwriteinmystatements.Iwasconvincedthatmy
directsuperiorinsidetheLegion,Moisiu,andtheoneswith
whomIhadactivatedintheLegion,werestronglydecidednotto
giveanythingup.Eachofuslastedaslongashecould,untilthe
breaklimitofhisbodyandsoul.Oneofusgaveupwhenthey
showedanotherpersontohim,disguredbecauseofthe
beatings,bloodalloverhisbodyandwoundsalloverhisbody,
beingthreatenedthisiswhatisgoingtohappentohimalsoifhe
doesnttellthemeverythingheknows.Facingthisordeal,the
oneswithlowresistancegaveup.Anotheronegaveupaerhis
rstbeating,anotheraeramonthofbeatings,othersaertwo,
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three,fourmonths,intheenddeclaringwhattheyhadto
declare,inordertobetrialedandconvicted.
Iwillmentiontwocases:SoltuzLaurentiuandOltaManoliu(
bothbeingstudentsattheMedicalUniversityinIasiandbornin
theCityofBotosani).Theynevergaveupduringthe
interrogationsandstillweresentencedSoltuz,20yearsof
forcedlabor,andManoliu15yearsofforcedlaborbasedonly
onwhatothershadbeenstatingaboutthem.Manoliuwas
releasedinonepiece,aerher15yearsofprison,andSoltuzaer
his16yearsofprison.
Thecommunistregime,beingstillinitsearlystages,didnot
havepeopletrainedforthesekindsofinterrogationsyet.Instead,
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asIstatedabove,itusedpeople omtheregimebeforethem,
whohadbeenworkingfortheState,togivesomeauthenticityto
thestatementsinordertoconvictus.Theirmissionwasto
torture,andtorture,andtortureuntiltheyleyouunconscious.
Theywerentinterestedinthequalityorquantityofthe
statements;thiswasthechiefcommissarsjob,whowasthe
leaderoftheinterrogation.Thesepeoplewerethetoolsofthe
regime.
Eventhoughthebeatingsandthetorturesinthese
interrogationswereunbearable,theonesbeinginterrogateddid
nottell10percentofwhattheyknew,whichwaslaterconrmed

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intheinterrogationsthatfollowedattheotherprisons,Pitesti
andGherla.
Mostofusrealizedthisfact,allowingtheonesthathadntbeen
arrestedtohide.WhentheordealsatPitestiandGherlabegan,
theonessubjectedtothosetreatmentsstatednotonlywhatthey
knew,butevenwhattheythought,seenorheardbychance,in
dierentsituationsinlife.
Thepurposeofthisregimewastoconvicttheonesbeingarrested
tolongyearsofprison,for,attherighttime,havingthemunder
theirauthority,toconstrainthemtosayevenmore,throughthe
processofselfdenouncement10,atPitestiandGherla.

10
totelleverythingthattheyweresupposednottohavedeclaredduringSecuritateinterroga ons
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IwanttomentionthatnotonememberoftheLegionwas
arrestedlawfully,withevidencethatwouldrightlyjustifytheir
sentencesandarrests.Thearrestsofthelegionnairescountry
wideweredoneonlybasedoninformationgatheredbythe
Statesintelligenceagencyduringthetwopriordictatorships,of
CaroltheSecondandAntonescu.So,itisirrefutablethatallthe
legionnairesarrestedbythecommunistregime,startingMay
1948,wereknownbytheoldpolice,becauseoftheinformation
alreadygatheredbackthen.Thecriteriawassimple:everyone
whowasalegionnairemustbearrested,beinghimactiveor
inactive,tobeputunderlockuntilthetorturesbegan,tortures
whichwillsupplyenoughevidence,fortheprogrammed
extermination.
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UnderAntonescusDictatorship,theoldsecurityagencyhad
beenmakingthesesocalledpoliticallesofallmembersofthe
LegionevensincethetimeoftheLegionnaireNationalState,for
thetimewouldeventuallycomeforthemtousethem.Mostof
theselegionnairescomprisedthedeathba alionsatSarata
(villagelocatedinthesouthofBasarabia).
There,theLegionsocersbothactiveandinreserve,aswellas
theinferiorranks,werereducedtobeingsimplesoldiersonthe
ba leeldandweresentonthe ontwearingthefollowing
indicative:postmortemrehabilitation.Theseba alionsdid
wondersofcourageagainsttheBolshevikarmy.

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TheUnitCommanderswerebeingwarnedthatallofthese
legionnaires,whowerewearingtheaforementionedindicative,
mustbesentontherstlineorindangerousmissions,where
deathwascertainforthem.SoAntonescu,anotherbutcherof
younglegionnairemen,knowingtheirpowerofsacrice,was
convincedthatinthismanner,hewillgetridofthem.
TheStatesSecurityrecordedalsothenamesofthoseyoungmen
andwomenaliatedwiththeLegion,highschoolstudents
(brotherhoodofthecross11),knownsincethetimeofthe
LegionaryGovernmentbysomeoftheschoolprincipals,teachers
andtheirclassmates.Allofthesepeopledenouncedthem
withoutmercy.(duringthetimeoftheSecondWorldWar,the

11

TheLegionsyoungmembers

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brotherhoodofthecrossandtheuniversitystudentsboth
continuedtooperate,underground,aertheyhadbeenbanned
bytheState).
Inthesamewaytheytreatedtheuniversitystudentswhowerent
partofTheLegion,thosewhohadbeenworkingforthestate,the
legionarywomenmovementandthosepartoftheworkercorp
andotherchristianyoungmenandwomengroups.So,in1945,
whenthecommunistscameandtookoverpower,theyalready
hadagoodideaabouttheLegionnaireMovementacrossthe
country.
Andanotherheinous,immoraleventcametopass:allthescum
whowerepartofthecommunistregimehadtodenouncethe
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legionnairestheyknew,aswellastheirsympathizers,noma er
wheretheymaybefound.Iknowthistobetrue omtheex
intelligenceocers,peoplewhostillretainedabitofconscience
inside,and omtheexcops,and ommybrotherVasile12as
well.
*
TheRomanianprisonsin1948,couldbecategorizedas:huge
prisons,mediumsizedprisons,andsmallprisons.
Huge:Aiud,Suceava,Gherla,Pitesti,JilavaandGalati.
Mediumsized:RamnicuSarat,Targsor(citylocatedwestof
Ploiesti,forstudents),Mislea(forwomen),Margineni(which

12

InEnglishBasil

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hadcarpentryworkshopsforexport),Fagaras(prisondestined
forexpolicemen),Dej,etc.
ThesmallprisonswerefoundineachCityCapital.Special
conditionsprisonswerefoundinthebasementoftheMinistryof
InternalAairsandontheUranusstreetinBucharest.
Hospitalprisons,fortheonessickoftuberculosis:TarguOcna,
inMoldavia,andinVacarestifortheotherdiseases.
Theprisonswereorganizedbydivisions,whereyoucouldnd
cells,aswellasrooms,namedinprisontermscommon
ground.Thecellsvariedinsize;generallytheywere34meters
longand1.5meterswide.Theoorofsomewasmadeoutof

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concrete,andinothersoftimber,pine.Theroomssizewas48
10meterswideand101520meterslong.
Eachjailcontainedpunishmentcellsblackcellsnamed
thuslybecausetheyhadnoventilation,nowindowsandno
lighting;so,pitchblack.
Alltheprisonshad,intheirbasement,specialpunishmentcells,
alotmoreinhumanethantheblackcells.Eachlevelofthe
prisonhad4blackcells.
Atrst,whenthearrestsstarted,therewerethesewhitecells
(thusthesayingIstickyouinthewhite).Ilaterfoundoutwhat
theywere,duringmytimeinAiud,in1954.Theywerebeing
calledwhitecellsbecausethewindowswerentmadeofglass;
TheLegionaryMovement
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theylackedfurniture.Theoneputinthiscellwaskeptonlyin
hisshirtandunderpants,forallthedurationofthecoldseason.
IwillnowproceedtodescribethetopographyofeachprisonI
wentthrough.
AndbecauseIfoundmyselfinSuceavasprison,Iwilldescribe
thisonerst,inshort,thisprisonbeinginthetopofthebig
prisoncategory,intermsofhugeandinfamous.
Acharacteristicofthecellsandrooms,theonesinthebasement
aswellastheonesonthesecondoor,isthatthesehadoors
madeofwoodenplanks.Theprisonhadbeenbuiltbythe
Austrians,onthetimewhentheyheldBucovina, om1775to
1918,andheretheRomanianswhoaskedfortheirrightto
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eedomwerebeingamassed.Thewholeofthebasement
containedonlycells.Startingwiththegroundoorupuntilthe
secondoor,ononesidetherewerecells,andontheotherside
rooms,eachvaryingbetween5/10metersand10/10meters.
Thecellsfurniturewasverysketchy:abunkwithamatonit
insteadofama ress,achamberpotforyournecessities,anda
pitcherwithwaterinitforyoutodrink.
Thecellwindowssizewasroughly40/40cm.,andthebigrooms
windowswere1.5/1meterssize.Allthewindowshadthickiron
barsonthem.BesideswhatImentionedabove,therewas
nothing,notevenhangerstohangyourcoaton.

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Thelackoffurniturepresentedanissueinallthetimeofour
incarceration,bringingmuchsorrowtothoseincarcerated;the
bucketsorthewaterpitchers,aswellasthosebucketsdestined
forourphysiologicalneeds(urineandfeces).Thesebucketswere
madeofpineboardsheldtogetherwithironrings,dierent
capacitiesandheightseach,dependingonthespacetheywere
beingputinto,whetheritwasacelloraroom.
Iwillstophereforabitandletmeaskareader omthewestern
worldforinstance:whatwouldhesayifheheardthatthosewho
wereconvictedthenserved,letssay16years,underacommunist
regime,atwhichyouadd7moreyears omthetimeofCarolthe
SecondandAntonescusdictatorships,allthistimesi ingina
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climateinfectedbythesmellofurineandfeces?Maybesomeof
themwouldntbelievewhattheyarehearing,andthen,theex
politicalprisoners,meincluded,wouldinvitethemtocomeand
seethateventothisday,inRomania,theseinstrumentsofmoral
andphysicaltorturecanbefoundstillinthecellsandroomsof
thoseprisons.Letthemseeinwhattypeofcivilizedconditions
thousandsofhumanbeingshadtoliveforaquarteroftheir
lives.
HereinAustralia,whereIimmigrated,outofcuriosity,recently,I
visitedaprisoninMelbourne,Victoria:itwasmorelikeabed
andbreakfastcomparedtowhatIandsomanyyoung

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Romanianmenandwomenhadbeenlivinginfor16yearstime,
inthecommunistprisons.
Whileweweredoingourphysiologicalneedstheairinsidethe
cellbecameunbearable.Thebucketswereemptiedtwiceaday,
morningandevening,inthetoiletsattheendoftheoor.This
operationwasdoneonecellatatime.Thiswayyoucouldntget
toknowyourcomradesinsidetheothercells.
TherewerecasesatJilavaandthisIknow omallthepeople
whowentthroughtherewhen,insidearoomwithanormal
capacityof40inmates,weresqueezedin300persons.Inthose
rooms(Reduit)wherethebucketsdidntsuceforallthe
people,thepeoplepeedandexcretedontheroomsoors.The
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airinsidetheroomswasnotonlyimpossibletobreathe,but
insucientalso.Toavoidasphyxiation,theystoodinturnsat
thedoorsthreshold,whereabitofaircouldcomein omthe
outsideoftherooms.Intheseroomstheelderlyonesandthesick
died,mostofthem.WhenIservedmysentenceinJilava,in1956,
thiswasntthecaseanymorethough.
Iwonder,howcanthisbepossible?Andstillitwaspossible,the
proofbeingthetestimoniesofthousandsofprisoners.
Thecellsandroomsdoorswasmadeoutofsolidwood,generally
strongpineessence,reinforcedwiththickirontostrengthenits
resistance.Abiglockwhichwaskeyoperated,andaboveit,a
thickdeadboltlockedthedoorevenfurther omtheoutside,in
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thiswayensuringthebestsecurity.Atthemiddle,ataheightof
onemeter,thedoorhadapeephole25/15cm.,prolongedtoward
theinteriorwithanopeningthroughwhichamesstin,military
sized,couldtinthrough.Ontheexteriorsideofthedoor,abig
strongdeadboltensuredthesamesercurityastheotheroneon
theothersideofthedoor.Above,attheheightofanaverage
man,thedoorhadamechanismwithcouldbeusedtoseeinside
thecell.Thelidofthepeepholecouldbemovedtotheleorto
theright,sotheguardcanlookinside,while ominsideofthe
cellyoucouldntseeanythingontheoutside.
InallthecommunistprisonsinRomania,itwasadierentthing
beinginthebasement,thegroundoororupperoor,inthe
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East,orSouth,North,orWest.Duringthewinter,theoneswho
foundthemselvesplacedintheNorthorEastsueredseverecold
becauseofthewind,moresothantheoneswhowerebeing
placedinsidetheSouthernorWesternpartoftheprisons.
Thepunishmentcellsinthebasementwerealothardertobear
thantheoneslocatedintheupperoorsofthepenitentiary.It
wasonethingtobeputintheZarca13andanotherthingwasto
beputinthesecondbuildingsofGherlaandAiud,wherethey
onlyhadrooms,andthetreatmentwasmoremild.Thegenpop
inmateswerealsoputhere;theyhelddiversejobsintheprison

13

A2x2meterscell,havingstonewalls;e.g.theymadetheprisonerssitontheirfourmembersontheoor,

andmixthebucketswheretheyhaddonetheirnecessitiesbetweenthemselves,thentheytoldtheprisonersto
eatwhatwasinsideuntiltheyarecleanagain;theymadeoneofthemwhowasaprieststandonatoiletupright
andtoldhimtoread omtheBiblewhilemasturbatingwithhisotherhand;ifyoudidnotdoastheywanted,
theywouldbeatyouwithclubs
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yard(standingguard,cooking,barbers,thosewhoadministered
baths,shoemakers,tailorsetc.)
Anotherthingwhichcostmanyliveswassmoking.Acigare e
bu insmokersslangwhichwasintentionallythrownbya
guardandliedupbyaninmate,manytimesresultedinthat
inmatesdeath.
Theruleswerethattheinmate,whenhewastakenoutsideinthe
prisonyardforawalk,insidespeciallyarrangedpens,hadto
walkwithhishandsbehindhisbackandhislookdown,hiseyes
intotheground.Anyfailuretorespecttheseruleswassanctioned
withseverearrest,andifitwaswinter,rarelyyoucouldsee
anyonecomingoutofthatalive.Poorsmokersonlytheyknow
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theordealtheyvebeenthroughbecauseoftheirweaknessfor
smoking.Forthem,theprisonwassomuchworsethanfornon
smokers.
Anotherordealwhichdestroyedthelifeoftheinmateswasthe
hunger;thiswasauthenticallydescribedinthepoemsofRadu
GyrandNichiforCrainic;thechronichunger,unbearable,which
humiliated,degradedandplacedtheinmateswhocouldntbear
this,inpitifulsituations,forthiswasbeyondthelimitoftorture
theycouldendure.Canyouimaginehowitistoendurethis
hungerfor16yearsandinalltheseyearsyoucannoteaseit,not
once,notevenforali lebit?Thepatience,thewill,the

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endurance,howmuchofthesewouldtheinmatesneedto
survive?God!Itwasntjustamonthortwo,butsixteenyears!
Asanexmedicalstudent,knowingthephysiologyandbio
chemistryofthehumanbeing,Ialwayswonderedwhatisthe
threshold,thelimitofthehumanbeingsresistancetohunger?
AndIadmitthatIhaventfoundtheansweryet.
Iwouldaskthesamequestiontothepeoplewhoarespecialistsin
thisma er:isitpossiblethatforsixteenyearstimeina24
hoursintervalyourmealcanonlyrange om600to900calories
(inthelasttwoyearsitwasaround1000)andnotmore,andstill
survive?Inthecircumstanceswhenyouwereseverelypunished,
themealcontainedaroundafewhundredcalories.Asmuchas
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thenutritionalvaluegoesthefoodwascomprisedonlyof
waste,stuthatwouldntsellinsocialistsgrocerystores.The
foodconsistedof:barley,peeledbarley,veryrarelybeans,
cabbage,pumpkins,kale,potatoes,allofwhichdidntsell,and
kalemeantforpigs.Andthemeatswaresthatwouldnt
normallysell:hooves,guts,lips,cuticles(skins)andanimal
headswhich,inthecapitalistcountriesyouwouldntevengive
thedogstoaslegitfood.Andalloftheseweremostlyinastateof
alteration.
OnethingIwillneverforgetaslongasIamalive.Iwasoutsidein
theprisonyardatGherla,notfar omtheprisonskitchen,when
Iseethegeneralpopulationinmatesbringingoutalteredbovine
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heads ominsidethebasementinsection2inastateof
putrefaction.Theyshovedalongstickthrougheachoneofthese
skullstokeepthematadistancethestenchwasunbearable
andinthiswaytheywerecarryingthemoutside,runningasfast
astheirlegscouldendureuntilthekitchen.Heretheythrewthe
headsintoabarrelwithwaterinit,wheretheywerewashedand
putintocauldrons,toserveasfoodforthepoliticalprisoners.
Thegeneralpopulationinmateshadadierent,be ermenu.
Becauseofthiswastemanyprisonersdevelopedliver,kidneyand
stomachinfections,especiallytheeldersandthosewhohada
gooddietbeforeincarceration.

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Whatnutritionalvaluecanthosethingshave?Andstill,the
politicalprisonerslivedstrictlyonsuchadiet.Anothercase
comestomymindnow,oneinwhichhungertransformedman
intoanimal.AmanofGreekorigin,whohadbeenalandlord
beforehisincarceration.Panawashisname,age75,andover1.80
meterstall,whobeforeprisonhadabigbelly,wasinsuchastate,
thathisbellynowlookedlikehehadfourapronsoneoverthe
other,likefoursheetsofbelly.
Iwatchedhimduringbath,naked;helookedhideous.Onetime,
beingtakenoutofhiscellalongwithotherprisonerstoclean
manure omalteredcowbellies,hetookoneofthosestripsof
cowbelliesandtuckeditunderhisstretched,elongatedbelly,in
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ordertotakeitbacktohisroomandeatit.Hewasspo edby
anotherinmatewho,beingenvious,ra edhimtothemilitia
guardand,beingsearchedtheydiscoveredthefoodwashidden
underhisbelly.Thepoormanimploredthemtolethimtakethat
piecewithhimsohecouldeatit,eventhoughitwasro en.
However,theguardbeathimtoapulpusingthatpieceofcow
belly.
AtSuceava,theinterrogationwasntdoneduringtheday,
becausetheydidnotwantotherstohearthecriesofpain.Itwas
onlydoneduringnights, omwhenthesunwentdownuntilthe
morninghours.Invemonths,whilemyinterrogationlasted,the
twobullieswhoweretorturingmealwayssmelledofbooze.
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Thetortureinstrumentswere:theoxvalve,thewhipandthe
club.
Hereishowthepreparationslookedlikeforthetorturedone.He
wassatdownonsomekindofswing,madeoftwowooden
boards;hishandsandfeetweretiedupwitharope,they
introducedaclubunderhisknees,andbeingimmobilized,he
wasputontwochairs;theclubsatonthetwochairs,formingthe
spinningaxle.So,eitherthefeet(solesofthefeet),eitherthe
posteriorwereexposedtobeinghit,oneatatime,aseachone
wasgoingeitherupordown.Theprisonercouldntmakeany
moves,andtheexecutionercouldhithiminanyspot,without

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encounteringresistance omthetortured.Thetwoexecutioners
jumpedontheprisonerwithdemonicfury.
Atthestartoftheinterrogationstheyhitprisonersonthebu
andthenakedback.However,theresultingwoundscouldhave
killedtheprisonerquickly.So,theythoughttorstcoverhisbu
andbackwithawetcloth,thiswaybeatinghimmoreoen
avoidingmoreopenwounds.Thehitsonthesolesofthefeetalso
destroyedthesolesofyourshoesjustaerafewsessions.Thatis
whytheyputshoeswithwoodensolesonyourfeet,moreresistant
toblows.Thistypeoftorturewasdescribedbytheexecutioners
asthewheelortheswing,because,whileyouwerespinning,
youcametobeinthetwopositions:solesorbu ocks.
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Thehardesttobearweretheblowstothesolesofthefeetwiththe
club,becauseyoufeltthepainnotinthesolesofyourfeet,butin
thebackofyourhead.Fortheblowsatthebu ockstheyusedthe
oxvalve.
Anothertortureconsistedinsomekindoftable,nicknamedthe
bed,longasthestatureofaman,whichhadxedmetalrings
fortheheadandfeetonit.Theback, omthebackofthehead
tothesolesofyourfeet,remainedexposed,forthemtohititwith
thewhip,thelaceortheoxvalve.Thisbedwasxedwithnails
ontwowoodensupports,whichremainedxedduringtortures.
Themostpainfulwasthethinstrappedwhip,similartoahorse
tail.Allthatwasmissingwerethepointyleadbearings.Usually
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thistorturewassosavage,thattheonesubjectedtothistorment
wasoenfallingunconscious.Togethimupagain,theypoured
wateronhisface,aerwhichhewasdressedandtakenbackto
hiscell.
Aeronesessionthevictimwasleinhiscellforafewdays,
wherehisbrotherstookcareofhiswounds,dressinghiswounds
withpadssoakedincoldwater.Theywereencouraginghimso
hecanwithstandanothersessionoftorture.
Aerafewdaystheywouldcomeatnightagainandyouwere
takentoacellinthesamepartoftheprison,whichhadtables,
chairs,inkandpaper,andyouhadtowriteeverythingyouknew.

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Theexecutionerhadanote omthechiefcommissarwhich
containedthethingsyouhadtowriteinyourstatement.The
inmatewasthentakenbacktohiscellforafewdays,thentaken
backtothecelldestinedforwriting.Nowanotewithwhathe
shouldwritewashandeddowntohim.Theylehimthereall
night,sucienttimeforhimtothinkanddecidewhathewould
choosetowrite,asthenoterequestedhimto.Manytimesthis
puthiminadilemmaandhewouldhavetobeverycareful
aboutwhathewrites.Inthemorninghewasbroughtbacktohis
cell,happythathedidnothavetogothroughthewheelorthe
bedagain.But,theconsciencebegantoupsethimaboutthings
whichhewroteduringthatnight.Aerseveraldays,hewas
takenbacktothetorturecellswherethesessionswererepeated
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exactlylikebefore.Theyappliedthewheelorthebed
tortures,rarelybothinthesamesession.Everythingwasback
likebefore:rstinthetorturecell,theninthewritingcell,until
theinterrogationwasover.Inmycase,theinterrogationended
atthebeginningof1949.
Thetortureswerebeingconductedbyindividualswhohadno
faithorconscience.Theordealdependedontherankyouhadin
theLegion,onthequalityandquantityofthethingsthey
imaginedyouknew,alldependingonyourphysicalconstitution
aswell.
Latenight,thedeadboltofthecellwaspulledandaguardwitha
pieceofpaperinhishandpronouncedmyname.Ihadastartle
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andaraisingheart.Itoldmyself:thetimehascometoseewho
youreallyare,whatyoucando,whatyouarereallycapableof
andifallyouthoughtanddeclaredisworththeordealyouare
abouttobesubjectedto.Onlythetestcanputyouinthe
situationofknowingyourself.
AerIgotdressed,IaskedtheguardifIwillcomebacktothe
samecell.Allthoseinthecellgotup,shookmyhandandtold
metobestrong.Becausetheguarddidnotrushme,Ilookedfor
amomentattheirfacesandInoticedonthemasentimentof
pity.TheguardrepliedtomethatIwillcomebackinthesame
cell,butinadierentstate.Theothersinsidethecellwere
startledatthethoughtofwhatwasinstoreforme.
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Iwastakenoutofmycelland,untilIreachedthebasement,
walkingbythegroundoorsection,wheretheinterrogations
werebeingdone,theguard,whowasnotyetindoctrinated,
ironicallytoldme:Iwontslapyouonthea.,becauseofthe
wound,Iwillhityouontheback.
Andthetorturebegan.Oneofthemhitmewiththewhipand
theotherwiththelash.Thewhipwasabitbearable,butthelash
resultedinsuchburning,itwaslikesomeonewas yinggreaves
onmybrain.
Idontrememberexactlyhowmanyhitstheyadministeredto
me,allIknowisatsomepointIbecameunconscious.They
pouredwateronme,waitedabit,andoneofthemtellsme:Put
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yourclotheson,youbandit!.Ipickedupmyshirt,thenmy
pants,but,whenItriedtoputmyshoeson,Icouldntbendover,
itwasliketheskinonmybackwasabouttocrack,soItriedto
putmyshoesonwithoutbending.
Oneofthemlethecellforabit;theotheraskedmewith
sarcasm,wipingthesweatofhisface,:Howdoesitfeel,you
bandit,enemyoftheworkingclass?.IdontknowifIhated
themordespisedtheminthatmoment,orif,giventhe
opportunityIwouldhavetakenrevengeonthemornot.
Aerali lewhilethedooropenedandtheguardmeasuredme
headtotoe,whiletheexecutionertoldhimtotakemebacktothe
cellhebroughtme om.Iwasleaningontheguard,becausethe
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solesofmyfeetwereburning,asifIwaswalkingonburning
coals.
WhenIarrivedbackinthebasement,wheremycellwas,the
guard,makingsurenoonewashearingorseeinghim,quietly
saidtome:Itoldyou,sir,thisisHellonearth!Whatdidyou
dotomakethemtotortureyoulikethis?Ilookedathimbut
didnotreply.WhatanswercouldIhavegavehim,inthat
moment?
Icouldhardlywaittogetbackintomycell.Thesolesofmyfeet
andtheskinonmybu ocksandbackwereburningsobad,that
witheverystepIfeltmyskinisgoingtocrackopen.Oncebackto
mycell,Irememberevennowthelookonmybrothersfaces,the
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painandthepity,asiftheywouldhavebeenthereinmystead.I
couldnttellhowmyfacelookedlike.Insidetheprisontherewere
nomirrors.TheyallstoodupontheirbunksexceptPopaTanu
andIlieddownonmystomach,becauseitwastheonlywayI
couldliedown;Ifeltthepainalmostonallmybody.My
cellmatesundressedme,becauseIwasntcapabletomoveatall.
Mybodywasburninglikere.Acomradeexclaimed,lookingat
mywounds:Oh,brothers,thisisterrible!Iaskedthemtoplace
somethingwetonmywounds.Iwasnthungryorthirsty
anymore,andIwasntcapableofanythinking.AllIremember
is,intheevening,Iaskedthemforsomewatertodrink.

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Oncethedaycame,theguard omthegeneralpopulationof
inmatesopenedthedoorwiththepretexthewantedtotakethe
waterpitchertollitwithwaterandtoldus,very ightened:
Theytorturedoneofyourbrotherssomuchforamonthand
theygotnothingoutofhim,sonowtheyjustputhiminthe
oven,youcanseeit omthewindowinyourcell.ThemomentI
heardthenameofthevictim,whomtheothercellmatesdidnot
know,itwaslikesomeonestuckaknifeintomyheart,and
withoutrealizing,Ishouted:Gioga!

Gioga
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ParizianuGeorge,a.k.a.Gioga,wasanethnicRomanian
(aromanian)14borninBulgaria,whoimmigratedtoRomania
alongwithhisfamilyaerTheRussiansconqueredDobrogea.
WewerecolleaguesinthesameyearintheMedicalUniversityin
Iasi,wherehepresentedMoisiutome.ThenIgottoknowhim
wellandworkedwithhim,untilhisarrest,on15thofMay1948.I
lovedhimandhadalltheadmirationforhiscourage,hispower
ofsacrice,aswellasforhiswayofbondingtohiscomrades.He
wasknownasTheGraniteMan.
Ididndouthewasarrestedon15thofMay,andwasconvinced
thatnoonewillevergetanythingoutofGioga.Andindeed, om

14

Aromanians,orVlachs(Aromanian:Armnji,Rrmnji,[11]Makidonji),areaLa npeoplena vethroughoutthe


southernBalkans,especiallyinnorthernandcentralGreece,southernAlbania,theRepublicofMacedonia,southwesternBulgaria,and,asanemigrantcommunity,inSerbiaandRomania(Dobrudja).

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thetimeofhisarrest,upuntilthebeginningofJuly,thebutchers
couldgetnothingoutofhim.Allhisbody, omheadtotoe,was
onebigwound.InthedayIfoundoutabouthim,the
executionersputhimintheovenatahightemperature,so
maybethiswaytheywillmakehimtalk.
Icannotrememberhowhegotoutoftheoven,allIknowisthat
hewasconvictedbasedonwhatotherssaidabouthim.Maybe
theinvestigatorsobtainedsomeinformation omhiscomrades
withwhomhehadservedinthemountains,or omotherthird
parties;butinnoway omhisownwords.
AsfarashisactivitiesinsidetheMedicalUniversitiesare
concerned,itseemsthisdidnotinteresttheinvestigatorsvery
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much,theproofofthisbeingtheydidntcon ontmewithhim,
thoughwedidservetogetherintheLegion.
ImentionedGiogascasebecauseImethimagaininPitesti,in
othercircumstances.
ThebeatingIhadtoendureonthe1stofJulywasacommon
procedure,appliedtoeveryonebeinginvestigatedontheirrst
encounterwiththeexecutioners.Thesepeopleusedallmethods
oftortureavailabletothemtoputthefearintheonebeing
interrogatedtomakehimspillthebeansabouteverythinghe
knows.Themethodwasthoughtbytheguysintheupperranks,
theexecutionersjobwasonlytoapplyitduringthe

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interrogations.Itscruelty,asstatedearlier,dependedontherole
youhadinsidetheMovement.

Aerallthis,mycomradesapplieddressingsonmywounds,
andIhadtimetoplanwhatIwasgoingtotelltheinterrogators.
Aerseveraldays,atthesamehourduringnight,thesame
guardwiththepieceofpaperinhishand,shoutsmyname
invitingmetocomeoutofthecell.

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Notlongaerhepulledthedeadboltthusclosingthedoor,he
comesnearmeandwhispers:Howareyoufeeling,sir?This
night,thesepeoplewillbeatyouagainveryhard.Lookingat
him,Inodmyhead,inacknowledgmentofhisfear.Oncewe
arriveintheinterrogationwing,tomysurprise,hedoesnttake
metothesamecellIhavebeenbeforewhentortured,butina
cellwithtables,chairs,paperandink.Ididnothavetowaitlong,
andthedeadboltispulled,thedooropensandinthenext
moment,Blehanenterstheroom,withastenchofboozeabout
him.Aerthecommonquestion:Howareyoufeeling,you
bandit?,towhichIdidnotreply,hetellsmetotakeaseatatthe
table,totakesomepaperandinkandtowriteeverythingIknow,

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throwingatme,beforeleavingthecell,theusualremark:you
bandit!
Beingleallbymyselfinsidethecell,Itookapieceofpaperand
triedtowriteasketchofwhatmystatementwouldbe.Istarted
withsomebiodata,then,inshort,IwrotewhatIthoughtwasthe
reasontheyincarceratedmefor,thesamethingsIwrotewhenin
Galataprison.AsIsatandwaitedforBlehansreturntoseethe
smallnoteIhadwri en,Icouldalreadyseemyselftakenbackto
theothercell,whereIwouldhavetofacethewheelandthe
bedagain.Butastimewenton,Blehanwasntshowingup;I
wasundertheimpressiontheyforgotaboutme.Without
anythingelsetodo,Iwalkclosetothedoorandputmyear
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againstthedoor,tohearwhatwasgoingonthroughoutthe
interrogationwing(section).Itwasquiet.Thewaitingwas
makingmenervous,butIbelievedthetortureswereoverforthis
night.Istartedtowalkinsidetheroom,when,unexpectedly,the
deadboltisbeingpulledandthedooropens.Blehanappearedin
thedoor.Youbandit!Didyoudeclareeverything?greetingme
withhishappeningeverywherelook,towhichIverypolitely
reply:Yessir,Mr.investigator!
Withoutlookingatthepieceofpaperonthetable,hecallsthe
guardwhobroughtmehereandgavemeinhiscustody.The
guard,noticingIwasnttortured,inamore iendlyvoicetells

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me:Thisnightyouescapedtorture,sir.Yes,sirwasmyreply,
andIenteredmycell.
Thelampinthecellwaslit,andatthenoisethedeadboltmade,
mycomradeswokeup.Itwasnearingdaytime.Theysignaled
me,andasIcouldunderstand omtheirsignalingtheywanted
toknowwhathappenedduringthenight.Isignaledbackthat
nothinghappened,fortheireaseofmind.Icouldreadontheir
facesthejoyinknowingthatnightIwasnttorturedlikebefore.I
thenlieddownonthebunkandslept.
Iwokeuplatethesameday.IneedtomentionthatinSuceava
Penitentiary,aslongastheinterrogationswereineect,there
werenorestrictionsforlyingdownonthebunkandsleeping
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duringdaytime.Probablythisordercame omupstairs,
becauseduringthetimeoftheinterrogationsyoucouldntsiton
yourbu .
ImmediatelyaerIwokeup,Ihadtotellmycomradeshowthe
interrogationwent.
Mycellmates,exceptingPopaTanu,wereallseverelytortured,
withthesamemethods.Mycomradeworkersweresosavagely
tortured,thatsomeofthemdidnotsurviveinterrogation,and
otherswentmad,veryfewactuallymakingitoutalive.During
theinterrogations,butespeciallyduringtheself
denouncements15,theinterrogatorsaswellastheocers

15

toadmitthosethingstheydidntsayduringpriorinterroga onsinGalataandSuceavapeniten aries;these


self-denouncementsstartednotatthis me,inSuceava,butlater,asyouwillsee,inthePites peniten ary

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addressedthevictims:You,bandits,youarethegreatest
enemiesoftheworkingclass,wewillcrushyouuntilthelastone
ofyou.
Thesebravemenwouldnotacceptthecommunistsbootson
theirnecks,thecommunistsbridlesintheirmouths,anddark
sunglassesontheireyestobeusedastoolsagainsttheir
brothers.
Aerafewdays,atthesamehourduringnight,thesameguard
leadmebacktothecellwhereIwaswritingthatstatement.Here
Blehanwasexpectingme,havingapredatorygrinonhisface,
andaddressedmeinthecommonknownlanguage:You

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bandit!Heressomepaperandink,writeeverythingyouknow.
Andheleslammingthedoor.
Lealone,Ifeltdizzy,tellingmyselfthateitherIamtoonave,
believingIcanleadthemon,eithertheyareidiots.Itwasatest
thattheexecutionerswantedtoperformonmeanditwouldcost
medearlyifImadethewrongmove.Iwasfacingadilemma:
ShouldIdeclareeverythingIknow,ornot?Idecidedtogivethe
samestatementasthersttime.And,knowingthatIhavesome
timeleuntilBlehanreturns,Icameclosetothedoor,putmy
earagainstitandthethingsIveheardduringthatnighton
theinterrogationwing,ringinmyearstothisday,likeanecho

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whichcame omaworldwherewailing,painandsuering
knownoboundaries.
Whatterriedmethemostwerethescreamsandgroansofthe
girlswhowerebeinginterrogated.Icouldseemymotherandmy
sisterbeingtortured,andIcouldntdoanythingaboutit.These
screamsandgroanswereraginginmyheadblowingmymind,
andmyheartwassobroken,thatIdidnotknowwhereIwas
anymore.Thetormentandthescreamsofthosepure,innocent
souls,provokedmesuchpain,thatIwantedtoscream,atthe
sametimerealizingthatIcouldnothelpthematall.Whata
horridnight!

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Thesescreamsofpainwereminglingwithotherwailingsof
ordeal,coming omthemen,whointheirtormentscriedto
theirmothers,withadesperatecry:Mother!Whydidyouallow
metobeborn!?
Iremovedmyself omthedoor,wenttothebackofthecelland
coveredmyears,becauseIcouldnttakeitanymore.Inthat
momenttheguardswordscametomymind:Thisindeedis
Hellonearth.
Towardtheday,thedoorwasopenedandincomesBlehan,with
hisfacesweatyandbloodshot,andthreatensmeinahoarse
voice:Now,youbandit,Ibelieveyoudeclaredeverything.Did

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youhearthescreamsinsidethecells?Wearekillingyouall!.
Tryingtoremaincalm,Ianswered:Yes,mr.investigator!
Aerafewmomentstheguardcametotakemebacktomycell.
Onthewayback,hedidnotforgettocongratulatemebecause
nothinghappenedtomeduringthenight,sayingthatallthese
investigatorsareinsane.
WhenIarrivedbackinmycell,towardtheday,mycomrades
wereallawakeandsurprisedthatIdidnotfacethewheelor
thebed.
Itoldthemmyfear;Iknewthattheseinvestigatorsmusthavea
plan,thattheyknewsomethingsaboutme,buttheywerele ing
methinkIcouldgetawaywithit.
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Inthefollowingdays,twocomrades omourcellwereseverely
beaten:NicolaeCojocaruandCalistruMircea.WhenIsawthe
statetheywerebeingbroughtin,Itoldmyselfthatmyturnmust
comesoon.
Indeed,aerafewdays,thesameguardcametotakemetothe
torturechamber.HereIwasalreadybeingexpectedbyBlehan
andDanielevici,withtheirfacesbloatedandbloodshot,their
smellofboozetakingyourbreathaway.Blehanrushedtowards
me,puthishandsonmyneckandgnashinghisteeth,started
thewellknownspeech:Untilthendoyouthink,youbandit,
youwillleaduson,doyouthinkwerestupid?No,youbandit,

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wearenotstupidandwewillshowyourightnowthatthepower
isinourhands.
Iwasfearfullywaitingforwhatwouldcome.Andashortorder
followed:Kissthebed.Ilieddownonthebed,whereIwas
tiedatmyhandsandfeet.Whiletheywererollinguptheir
sleeves,theyweremorallypreparingmeforthepromisedtorture
:Youwillsee,youbandit,howsmartweare.Inthenext
moment,ahailoflashesandoxvalveslledthecell.Icouldnot
scream,becausetheystuedmyownsocksintomymouth.I
couldonlyclenchmyteeth,notbeingabletoscream.

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Idonotknowhowmuchtheprocedurelasted,butIdo
rememberIdidntpassout.Aerawhile,theexecutioners16le
toothercells,havingothervictimstoa endto.Thewetsheeton
mybackwaslikeabalmformyopensores.Aertheirreturn,
theexecutionersdecidedbetweenthemselvesthatthetorturewas
doneforthenight,becausemyoldwoundsstartedtoopen,
again.Theyuntiedme,remindingmewithconviction,that om
nowonIwilldeclareeverything.Theguardwhowasescorting
mebacktomycell,seeingthestateIwasin,didnotdaretoask
meanotherquestion,beingsatisedwithonlydoinghisjob.
Whenmycomradessawme,theycouldntholdtheirtears,thisis
howhurttheywere.

16
A.K.A.interrogators,A.K.A.Execu oners,A.K.A.Torturers
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Aerafewdays,Iwasagaintakenbacktothewritingcelland
Blehanorderedmetowriteeverything,becausetheyalready
knowwhatIknow.
Aerhelethecell,Istartedwonderingiftheyreallyknow
somethingaboutme.Onethingwasforsure:theinvestigators
atFalticeni,whowerepresentatSuceavaprisonforthe
interrogationofthosearrestedinBaiaMare,thesameoneswho
searchedformeatmyparentshouseonthe15thofMay,hadmy
politicalrecordle,madeinAntonescustimes.Thiswas
conrmedbymybrotheraswell,Basil,whowasapoliceman.
Between1941and1945Iwasputonthemanhuntlistinthe
policestations,beingconsideredadangerouslegionnaire.So,I
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couldntdenyIamalegionnaireanymore.SoIdecidedtoadmit
Ihadbeenalegionnaireaslongasthelegionnaireshadbeento
power,becauseeventheStateitselfwasdubbedThe
LegionnaireNationalState,andIwasacitizenofthestate.Aer
thefallofthelegionnaires,Ihadnothingtodowiththem
anymore.
Ithoughtthisstatementwillsatisfythem.EventhoughIknew
theyknewevenmoreaboutme,buttheywantedtoseehow
muchIthoughtIcouldfoolthem.SoIdeclaredthatIwasa
legionnaireonlyduringAutumn1940,legally.
WhenBlehancametoseethedeclaration,hereaditandthen
addressedmeasusually:See,youbandit,youwerea
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legionnaire.Be erifyoudeclareditwithnowheelandbed.See
toitthatyoudontmakeanymoremistakeslikethisagain,
becausetheywillcostyou,dearly!FromwhatBlehantoldme
justnow,Irealizedthattheyknewsomethingmoreaboutme.I
wasescortedbytheguardbacktomycell,wheremycomrades
awaitedme.TheyweregladIwasntbeaten.Buttheynoticeda
bizarrelookonmyface,asignforthemthatsomethingelsedid
happenthough.

THE CONFRONTATION WITH MOISIU

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Inthenightbeforethecon ontationwithMoisiuIhadaterrible
dream.IsawMoisiucoveredbyhisownblood,disguredand
lookingatmeinhatred.Idonotbelieveindreams,butthenext
daybeforelunch,thecelldooropenedandaguardwhoIdidnot
seebefore,alongwiththeguardIknew,readmynameonthe
pieceofpaperandinvitedmetofollowthem.
WhenIarrivedbackattheinterrogationsectionIcouldtellthey
weretakingmetosomeplacenew.Westoppedin ontofacell,
onitsdooryoucouldread:OceofInquiryNo.2,whichstood
wri enonacardboard.Iwasintroducedintothecelland,tomy
surprise,therewasMoisiu,alone.Hewasshearedandhadaface

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that ightenedme.Welookedateachotherwithoutmakinga
move.
Aerafewmomentsthechiefcommissarwhowasleadingthe
investigationsofmycolleaguesandcomradesenteredthecell.
HelookedatmesurprisedandaskedmeifIamBordeianu,
studentattheMedicalUniversityofIasi.Irepliedyes,andhe
askedmeifIknowMoisiu,pointingtoMoisiu,whowasmy
superioraswellastoallmedicaluniversitystudents.Ireplied
thatIdonotknowhim.HeaskedMoisiuthesamequestion.He
repliedthesame.
Thechiefcommissartellsus,asawarning:Maybeyouwillget
toknoweachother!Aerthat,Iwasescortedbacktomycell,
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terriedbecauseofwhatIhadseenonMoisiusface.WhenIsaw
himIbecameconvincedthatneitherhe,northecomradesactive
withmeintheuniversitytalkedaboutme.
InthemomentwhenIhadmycon ontationwithMoisiu,hedid
notknowthatIosubMihaiandIonLunguleac,whowerehigh
schoolanduniversitycolleagues,hadbeenarrestedalreadyand
hadbeentalkingtotheSecurityaboutmeandMoisiu.Ialso
foundoutlater omMoisiuthataerourcon ontation,hewas
soseverelybeatenthatmanydaysaerhecouldntmove
anymore.
Thenextdayaerthecon ontationIwastakenoutofmycellin
thesameritualandtakentothetorturechamber.HereIfound
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onlyBlehan,whoimmediatelyjumpedonme.Youbandit,you
dontknowMoisiu,yoursuperiorattheMedicalUniversity?
Tryingveryhardtoremaincalm,IansweredthatIdidnothave
anysuperior,andIneverheardofthenameMoisiu.Takeyour
shoeso,yourshirtandyourpantsthen,andcomehere.He
tiedmeup,aswastheritual,satmedownonthewheel,putthe
shoeswiththewoodensolesonmyfeetandstartedhi ingmeat
thesoleswiththeclub,torturewhichbecameevermore
unbearabletomeastimepassed,theblowsrepeatingthemselves
inthebackofmyhead,asifsomeonewasbeatingnailsintomy
brain.

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Aerthewheel,thebedfollowed,wherehehitmewiththeox
valveonthebu ocks.HedidnotstopuntilIwasnotmoving
anymore.Slowly,Imanagedtoputmyclothesonagainandtake
theshoesintomyhand,becauseinnowayIcouldputthemon;
thesolesofmyfeetwarburningsomuch,asifIwouldbeen
walkingonburningcoals.Theguardcametotakemeaway.
Duringourtripbacktothecell,seeingthestateIwasin,he
whispered,somehowtroubled:Sir,youmustdeclaresomething,
becausethesepeoplewillkillyou.Thereweresomecaseswhen
theytookthemtothepolicestationinthecityandcameback
withoutthem.Ilookedathimwondering,shruggingmy
shouldersandIenteredthecell,wheretheburningandpainof
thesolesofmyfeetandmybu ocksmademealmostscream.
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Asurpriseawaitedmeinthecell.NicolaeCojocaruanddeacon
Eimiewerelyingdownontheirbunks,andtheothercomrades
wereplacingontheirbodiesdressingssoakedincoldwater.
Whenmycomradessawme,theygavemeahandandsatme
downneartheothertwocasualties.IaskedCalistrutoplace
somethingwetonthesolesofmyfeetandonmybu ocks.
Aerafewdays,recoveringabit,Iwasescortedintotheoceof
thechiefcommissarwhereIfoundMoisiudisgured,leaningon
hisshoulderagainstthewall.Hewasinsuchpain,thatIthought
hetookabeatingforeverystudentintheMedicalUniversity.
Whilelookingathim,Iheardhimwhisperingwithhisvoice

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almostcompletelyfaded,asifhewasdying:Comrade,asof
todaydowhatyouknowbest,Iamnotyoursuperioranymore.
Iknewsuchdisappointmentinthatmoment,Isawmyselfbeing
thrownintochaos.Mysuperiorandcomradewassaying
goodbye,maybeforever.Ididnotunderstandatallwhatwas
goingoninthesoulofthatman.Maybehecouldntsuerthe
beatingsanymoreormaybehesaidthisonlytobeheardbythe
commissarwhowasstandingoutsidethecelllistening,ortoput
metothetest.Anavalancheofquestionscametome.Iwasnt
capableofthinkinganylonger.Inthatmomentthechief
commissarcomesin,looksatmeandasksme:Youdontknow
Moisiu?Ireply:Idont,sircommissar!
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Aermyreply,thecommissarordersMoisiutotakeshisclothes
o.WhenIsawMoisiuswoundsonhisbody,foramomentIlost
touchwithreality,myimagebecamedark.Inevereversaw
anythinglikethisbeforeinmylife,noteveninthecruelestof
interrogations.Allofhisbody,headtotoe,wasabiginfected
wound.Anunimaginablepainlledmysoul,therewasnotone
berofmybodywhichdidntfeelthepain.Whodidnotlive
throughpain,suering,overtheimaginablelimits,shallnever
understandthisphenomena.Iwasbeatenseverelytoo,butwhat
IsawonMoisiusbodycausedmetomeltaway.
ThecommissarsignaledMoisiutodressagain,whilehetoldhim:
Tellthisassholetoadmit,becauseIwillkillhim!Iosuband
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Lunguleacalreadydeclaredeverything.Tothisadvice,Moisiu
repliedbrief:Hellsee!.Thecommissar,inasharpirritated
voice:Well,givehimtheblessingsoheknowswhattodo,thisis
howitisamongyourkind.Moisiudidntreplyfurther.Ilooked
athim(Moisiu)againandtearsfell ommyeyes.The
commissarapostrophizedmewiththemoststupidirony:Are
youcryingbecauseofyourbossorbecauseofyourself?Ididnot
replyfurther.
WhenIheardthenamesofthetwoIosubandLunguleacIwas
breathless.Thenmymindclearedagain.Moisiuwasnttheone
whotalked,becausehedidnotknowLunguleacortheother
comrades,butthosetwo(IosubandLunguleac)weretheones
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whotalkedtotheSecurity,toldthemeverything.Iwasbrought
backtomycell.

Mihai Iosub and Ion Lunguleac


ThetwohadbeenmycolleaguesattheMedicalUniversity,and
inhighschool.InMarch1948,Iosub,whowasalegionnairein
theMedicalUniversity,didthestupidthing(withoutle ingme
knowrst,aswashishabit)tolethis iendLunguleacinon
somesecretsoftheMovement.ThereasonIosubtrusted
LunguleacwasbecauseLunguleac,whohadbeenbornin
Storojinet(NorthernBucovina,conqueredbyRussians)sawhis

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motherandhisthreebrothersdeportedinSiberiaintheautumn
of1940,wheretheydiedtoo.
Becauseofthisdrama,IosubthoughthemusttellLunguleache
isalegionnaire,thatheisanactivepartoftheLegioninthe
MedicalUniversitysince1946,thattheunitsuperiorintherst
andsecondyearwasme,alsothattherewereotherlegionnaire
studentsandthatthesuperiorofallthelegionnairestudentsof
theMedicalUniversitywasastudentinthefourthyear,who
goesbythenameofMoisiuDumitru.
ThesecondmistakeofIosubwasthathedidthestupidthingto
runaway omIasi,aermyarrest,inthemiddleoftheexam

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session;thethirdmistakewastakingLunguleacforaridewith
him,tohishomevillage.
Duringthattimethepolicesearchedforlegionnairestudentsat
theiruniversities,hostels,andonthedateswhentheyhadtheir
exams.Duringoneofthesesearchesdonebythepoliceatthe
HosteloftheMedicalUniversity,thepolicefoundout omour
colleaguesthatIosubandLunguleacnotonlydidnotappearat
theirexamafewdaysprior,buttheylethehostelinsucha
rushthattheydidnotevenstopbythecanteen.Iosubsaddress
waseasytondout omtheuniversitysecretariat.Thepolicein
Falticeniwasbroughttothea ention,whichconductedanightly
searchatIosubsparents.Herethepolicearrestedthetwo,taking
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them omtheirbeds,tiedthemtogetherandtookthemto
Suceavaprisonduringthesamenightinajeep,prisonwhich
wasonly50km omIosubsparentsvillage.Duringthebody
search,thepolicefoundtheirstudentIDs.
Beforemycon ontationwiththem,theywereseverelybeaten
andtorturedforonemonth.Iftheydidsaysomething,theydid
itbecausetheycouldntbeartheordealsanymore.
Aermycon ontationwithMoisiu,thetwowerecon onted
withhim.LunguleacdeclaredhedidnotknowMoisiuandhe
wasinfacttellingthetruth.Iosubdidnotadmithewasa
legionnaireorthatheknewMoisiu.

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Theinterrogator,versed,makesapropositiontoLunguleacon
hiswordofhonorweknewquitewellhowmuchthehonorofa
communistwasworthaerhetorturedLunguleacseverely
manytimes,hetoldLunguleachelllethimgo eeifhetellshim
everythingabouthislegionnairecolleagues.Lunguleacdid
believeinthisproposition,notknowingthetreacheryofthe
commissar,sohetoldthecommissareverythingheknewabout
hiscolleagues.Lunguleachadanotherreasontotakethisstep
immediatelyaerhehadbeentortured:hewassuering om
theGravesBasedow17disease.Hecouldntsurvivehunger.So,
con ontedwithIosub,LunguleacdeclaredeverythingthatIosub
toldhim.BecauseIosubdidnotadmitthatLunguleacwas

Graves-Basedow disease is a disorder characterized by a triad of hyperthyroidism, goitre,


and exophthalmos (bulging eyeballs)

17

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tellingthetruth,Iosubwastorturedforanotherfullweekand
thencon ontedagainwithLunguleac,andsoon,untilhenally
gaveup,admi ingtoeverything.
Beingagaincon ontedwithIosubandLunguleac,Ididnot
admittoanything,andtheyadministeredthemostcruelwheel
torturetome.
Mycellwastransformedintoarealhospitalroom,withcripples
initandsoweakenedyoucouldreadontheirfacestheycouldnt
goonlikethisanymore.Whentheybroughtourfoodtous,the
guardsingeneralpopulation,becausetheywereterriedwhen
theysawus,conrmedthesamethingswerehappeninginall
thepenitentiary.
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OnedayattheendofSeptember,around10oclock,Iwastaken
tothechiefinterrogatorsoce.Iwassoweakphysicallyand
confused,thatIdidnothavethepowertothinkanymore.I
enteredtheoce,andwasgreetedwiththewords:Youbandit!
Youwilldielikeafool,becauselook,herewehavethestatements
whichcansendyoutotrial,tobesentencedalongtimein
prison.Hehadmereadallthestatementswri enaboutme.
ThenhebroughtIosubandLunguleactoconrmin ontofme
thatthosestatementshadbeenindeedwri enbythem.
Followingthesestatementsandcon ontationswiththemI
decidedtoadmitIwasalegionnaireintheMedicalUniversityof
Iasi,aswellasbeingaunitsuperiorinthersttwoyears.
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THE CHARADE
(THE STAGING ACT)
ItwasthestartofNovember1948.Irememberquiteclearlythat
therewasnosnowatSuceavayet.
Itwasasunnybutcolddaywhen,inthemorningatabout10
oclock,theprisonwarden,havinglotsofguardsasescort,comes
toeverycell,announcingeveryonewhoisastudentofuniversity
orhighschoolinIasitogetoutintotheprisonyard.
Aerwards,theinterrogatorsdividedusbyuniversities.Onone
side,TheUniversitywithallitsfaculties,andontheotherside,
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ThePolytechnicswithallitsfacultybranches.Forthersttime
sincemyarrest,Icouldseemyfacultycomrades.
Aerallthestudentsandhighschoolkidswerebroughtoutinto
theyard,wewereforcedintomilitarytrucks,coveredwith
canvasesandguardedbyarmedsoldiers.Wewereleadeach
facultyonaplateauinthevicinityofSuceavasfortress.Herethe
soldierscarryingautomaticriesformedaringaroundus.To
oursurprisethough,besidethesoldiers,guards,interrogators
andexecutioners,therewerealsophotographersthere.
Theychoseasunnydayforthecameras,likethosedaysinMay
orJune,whengrassisstillgreen.Sincetheycouldntnd
anythingincriminatingduringourarrests,andthey,the
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interrogators,neededtohaveevidenceaboutusintheirles,
admi edinacourtoflaw,theystagedthemostoutrageous
thing:aspectsoflegionarylife,whichwerelmedand
photographedtobeputinourlestoserveasevidenceforthe
accusationscharadecase.They,supposedly,were
photographingameetingofthefacultylegionnaires.Thatis
whyweweredividedintounits,exactlylikeoursuperiors
manualsaidthatourmeetingsshouldlooklike.
Ourclotheswerecivilianclothes.Theyorderedustotakethem
o.Wewerelewithonlyourshirtsandthesleevesrolledup,to
showthattheweatherishotandweweremadetositdownon
thegreengrassnearthesmallforest.Then,unitmeetingswere
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conducted,alsoasfacultymeetings,whereMoisiuwas
photographedreceivingthereport.
Alsobookscontaininglegionnairedoctrinewerephotographed,
conscatedsincethetimeofAntonescuandbroughtbythe
interrogators.Thesebookshadtobefoundontheunit
supervisorsduringthemeeting.
Inordertoprovetheterroristnatureofthelegionnaires,they
photographedusholdingmilitaryweaponswhichinfact
belongedtothetroopswhoescortedusaswellastarget
practice.Theyalsostagedanightlytargetpracticeeventhough
itwasdaytimeinwhichyoucouldseetheweaponsbeing
stackedtogetherpyramidstyle,likethetroopsweretrainedto
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do.Allthiswastoprovethatthelegionnaires,armedtotheir
teeth,presentedathreattotheStatessecurity.
Butthemostoutrageousthingyetstillhadtofollow.Toaccuse
thoseofuswhowereinhiding,notyetarrested,they
photographedsomeofusandpretendedtobethem,soincase
theyfoundthemtheycouldbringthemtotheprisonaswell.
TheyforcedmetoposeformybrotherIon,wholookedsimilarto
meandwhosenamewasmentionedintheinterrogation,even
thoughhehadntyetbeenarrested.Hewasntastudentatthe
MedicalUniversity,butatPolytechnics.IosubMihai,Ungureanu
AlexeandClimescu,allstudentsatMedical,posedforother

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studentsatPolytechnics,notyetarrestedandwhoweretheir
iends.Thesameprocedurewasdonewiththegirls.
Youcouldtellitwasaliebythefactthatourhairwasthesame
length,beingtrimmedenmassewhenwehadbeenincarcerated
atSuceava.Someofushaddevelopedmoustaches,likeme,who
beforeprisonneverusedtowearone.Onlyoneofusworebefore
prison,andthatwasCosticaStamate.Irememberclearlythatfor
thestagingofthewholethingthesuperioroftheLegionnaire
StudentCenter,NicolaeSimionescu,consultedwithBogdanovici,
theuniversitysuperior,withMoisiuandCosticaButan,the
Polytechnicssuperior,onhowtheyshouldarrangethisstageup,
because,withorwithoutouraccords,thisstageupneededtobe
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made,theinterrogatorsforcedusto.Thestagingdidnotgoas
planned,becausethetrialsofthoseinSuceavaprisonunderwent
indierentcircumstances,whichIwillexplaininthechapter
abouttrialsandpanelsofjudges.
Aerthischaradeended,wewereagainforcedintotrucks,
escortedbytheeverinseparablearmedtroopsbacktoourcells,
whereconversationsfolloweddierentopinionsand
predictionsaboutthefuture.Theinterrogationscontinuedtoo
withtorturesequalinintensityuntiltheendofDecember.

THE POST-CHARADE
CLIMATE
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Aerthischarade,theinmatesconditionwasdeplorable,
withoutanymedicalassistanceandbecauseofthediet,they
couldbarelystandontheirfeetanymore.Thebiggestsuering
wasthehunger,whichwilltortureusduringthemanyprison
years.Eachofusenduredhungerdependingonhis/her
constitution,theirwillsandtheirmentalpower.
Becauseofthissuering,almostunbearable,somefewofus
gaveupduringinterrogations,andothersstill,madeallkindsof
compromises.DuringthattimeinMoldaviayoucouldstillfeel
theshortageoffoodaerthetwoyearsofdrought19451947.I
willneverforgethow,onSaintDumitrusDay(26thofOctober)
theanniversaryofmynameaerlunch,mycolleagueatthe
university,walkingintheyardonlygirlswereallowed10
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minutesofwalkwentnearthebarredwindowandthrewmea
pieceofbread1kilogrambig,whisperingtome:Happy
Birthday!.Theguardwhowatchedoverthemdidnotnotice
whatshedid,butasoldier omthescouttowerdidand
denouncedher.Shewaseasytorecognize,becauseofallthegirls
onlyoneworepigtails.Asapunishment,beingbroughttothe
interrogation,shetookabeatingwhichshedidnotforgetevento
thisdayIbelieve.Plus,foronemonthtimeshewasntallowedto
walkintheyardorbuybread.
InthemomentIhadthebreadinmyhands,Iknewthatthey
wouldcomeandsearchforitandIshareditquicklybetweenall
ofus,eatingitwithoutevencatchingabreath.PopaTanudidnot

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wanttoeat.Whentheycametosearchforit,theobjectofthe
crimecompletelyvanished,andwedidnotadmittoanything.
Onegoodday,attheendofNovember,Iamtakenoutofthecell
alongwithCojocarutobringthegirlsapotofdrinkingwater
omthefountainintheprisonyard.Onthisoccasion,thanksto
theguardatthegirlssectionwhowasnice,wecouldentercellby
cellwiththepots,toseeallthegirls.Withsomeofthemwecould
talkandexchangeinformation,theguardpretendinghedidnot
seeus.Whatimpressedmemosthoweverinaveryunpleasant
wayinthesecellswasthehygiene.Iwasappalledandatthesame
timeaskedmyself:howwilltheylast,theseincarceratedwomen,
intheseprisonconditions?Becauseoftheiranatomyand

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physiologytheyneededadierentbodyhygiene,mostofthem
beingyoung.
Isawinthesecellsimprovisedclothsofdierentsizesandcolors
washedonlywithcoldwater.Probably,theseclothsweretorn
omtheirpe icoats.Youcouldreadonthefacesofthesedelicate
creaturesthattheyhavebeensubjectedtosomuchhumiliation.
Thesmellinthecellwassounbearable,thatIwasntsurprised
theywerealloweda10minutewalkintotheyardwhilethecell
doorswereleopen.Theirclothsneededtodryand eshairto
enterthecell.Imetsomeofthemaermyrelease.Theyexecuted
16yearsofprisonandconfessedtomethatforthewomenthe
tormentwasharder.Inallthetimewhilewewereinterrogated
andtrialednotonetimewewereallowedtotakeabath,our
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clothestowashortoreceivesoap.Ladiesinthecivilizedworld
candrawaconclusionbasedonwhatIsaid.Allthewomen
arrestedinourcountryunderthecommunistregimewerereal
heroines.Honortothem,throughoutthehistory!
Icannotendthischapter,withoutsayingthattherewereother
citieslike:Bucharest,Timisoara,Galati,Clujetc.,wherethe
torturesandbeatingswereevenmoreferocious.The
interrogations,thestageups,andthetrials omSuceavaarea
constantreminderofthemostheinouspoliceandjusticesystem.
Inthedarkreignbroughtbythesystemofjusticeslies,
perversionanddegradationwerecommonplace.

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SUCEAVA (2)
ThemercifulpeopleandgoodChristiansinSuceavaandthe
surroundingvillageshadthewonderfultraditiononSabbath
(Saturday)andonthebigholidays,tocometotheprisongate
andbringtheinmatesallkindoffoodandclothes.Evensince
therstSaturday,whenwecametotheprison,we,theones
arrestedonMay15th,sawthatthesepiousChristiansshowedup
atthegatewithfood.
ItwasthedayofSaintJoanofSuceava,andthecitywasfullof
Christians omsurroundingareas,evenMaramurestoo,who
triedtogetfoodtotheinmates.Buttheservantsofsatan,who
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werekeepingtheprisonersinstarvation,chasedtheChristians
awaywithoxvalves,turningtheirfoodbasketsupsidedownand
cursingthemandhi ingthem.Then,theseloyalChristians
gathereduponthespotofthebovinefair,wheretheyhadtheir
carts,signalingtheinmates omadistance,showingthemthat
theirfoodbasketsweretornapart.Thisscenewasalsoseenby
theinmateswhowereatthewingconnectedtothegate,andby
thosesi ingattherstoor.Manywomenwerecryingbecause
ofwhathappenedtothem.
AttheendofDecember1948,mostpartoftheinterrogations
wereoveralready.Thosewhogotoutofthetorturesinonepiece
werecollectingthemselves,preparingforthegreatHolidayof
JesusBirth.
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Iwillneverforgetthelovingandspiritualupli,when, omeach
girlcell,startingwithDuskuntillightsout,thegirlswenteach
nearthecellwindowsandstartedsinging.Ineverheard
somethingsweeter,moremelodious,moreupliingthanthe
voicesofthosenightingaleslockedbehindbars.Thethingwhich
madeeveryinmatecryinthatpartoftheprisonwerethecradle
songs,whichthosemotherswholosttheirchildrensang.
TheChristmasandNewYearsEvewespentinhungerand
sadness.Inthosetimes,themosthideoussecretpolice,
Securitatea(TheSecurity)wastakingshape,andforusthat
meantfakedtrialsalongwithheavyyearsinprison.

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Isolation
15thofJanuary1949, omourbasementsection,doorscouldbe
heardopeningandfootstepsheardbackandforthonthe
corridor.Beforelunch,aguardholdingalistinhishandopened
ourcelldoorandreadmyname,sayingthewordsIwillbeforced
tohearallofmyprisonyears:Packyourstuandgetout!
Ipackedmystu,consistingofafewwashedclothes,huggedmy
comradesIgrewa achedwith,theybeingtheoneswhotookcare
ofourwoundssomanymonthsofinterrogations.ThosepeopleI
wouldnevermeetagain,exceptforPopaTanu.

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Goneoutofmycell,Iwaswalkingbehindtheguardwho,looking
onalist,stoppedinthe ontofcellno.15.ThatmomentIdid
notthinkmuchofthatnumber,butitsymbolizedtheyearsI
havetospendinprison omnowon.
Entering,Iwasexpectingtoseeabunk,butinsteadallIsawwere
atornmatandamotheatenblanketwithholesinit,whichwere
putunderthewindow.IntherstmomentIdidnotknowwhyI
wasbeingputhere,ifIwillremaininthiscelluntilthetrialand
ifothercomradeswillbeaccompanyingmetothetrial.Iwaited
forlunchtocome.Ididnotknowifthatguardwhowasinour
sectionwashereaswell.GreatwasmysurprisewhenIsawthat
theywouldntopenthedooranymoretoenterthecellandserve

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thesoupinthemesstin,buttheyonlyservedthesoupthrough
thesmalldoorunderthepeephole.
Thus,Icouldobservethatbesidesthecommonknowncells,there
wereotherindividualcells,withsocalledisolationconditions.
TheconditionswereentirelydierentthaninthecellswhereI
hadbeenuntilthen.
Aerli lewhile,thecommanderoftheguardsappeared,known
intheirlanguageastherst,withthepieceofpaperinhis
hand.Hehadtomakesuremynamecorrespondedwiththeone
onhispaper.Heaskedmetotellhimmybirthdate:day,month
andyearandplaceofbirth,thenamesofmyparents,whereI
wasarrestedandbywhom,aswellasmyprofession.

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Aerheassessedmyidentity,hetoldmethatIwasputin
isolationwithspecialconditionsuntilthetrial.Iwasntallowedto
knockonthedoor,neithertotakethewastechamberpotandthe
drinkingwaterpotoutside,thesebeingchangedonceinthree
days.Iwasonlyallowedtohavemyblanketandmatwhichwere
underthewindow,forsleeping.IdonthavetosaythatIwasnt
allowedtoaskforanythingxedconditionsbythosewho
interrogatedme.Therst,aervoicingtheseprohibitions,shut
thedoor,pulledthedeadboltanddisappeared.Icouldscream,
shout,bangmyheadagainstthewalls,cryforhelp;nooneheard
me.ForthersttimeIwasalone,soalone.Thecoldandhunger
whichgnawedme,wereeasiertobearthanthequestionsand

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contradictionsinsidemyconscience.BecauseofthecoldI
couldntsleep.
Onenight,late,IcouldntsleepandIwaswalkinginsidethecell
whenIheardthedeadboltopening,thenthedoor,andamanin
aneverbeforeseentypeofuniformappeared.Iquickly
understood,becauseofthecasualexpressionwhichheaddressed
me,whoIwasdealingwith:Youbandit,dressupandfollow
me!IwassleepingwithallmyclothesonbecauseofthecoldsoI
couldntdresswithanythingelse.Itwasasifthecoldwithinmy
bodydissipatedwhenIfoundmyselfin ontofthedark
unknown,becauseIdidnotknowifIwillcomebackaliveorifI
do,inwhatstate.

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Outonthecorridor,Iwasorderedtoplacemyhandsonmy
head,tonotsayawordandtowalkonthetipofmytoes.Iwas
walkingveryslowly,exhausted omthose40daysofinhumane
conditions.
OnceIarrivedintheinterrogationsection,aersome10steps,
theocerwelcomesmewiththefollowingorders:toplacemy
foreheadagainstthewall,keepmyhandsonmyhead,dontlook
le,dontlookrightanddontmakeanymove.
WhenIenteredthecellIwasamazed.Theocerwhojust
orderedmetodothosethingswasnoneotherthanmystate
appointedlawyer omthetrialofthewinterof1947,atIasis
MilitaryTribunal.

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ThattrialhadbeeninitiatedbythePrefectureoftheCityofBaia,
becauseofwhathappenedwiththeprefectinthetimeofthe
elections,on19thofNovember1946.
Whowasthisocer?HisnamewasIonGheorghe,excolonel
magistrateandPresidentoftheMilitaryTribunaloftheTerritory
ofIasi.AerthegovernmentofGrozacameabout,hehadbeen
purged omtheMilitaryJustice,continuingtoprofessasa
lawyer.
AsanexMilitaryTribunalPresident,itwaseasytograsphow
thislawyerobtainedhiscolonelrankbackovernight!
Aerheveriedmypersonaldata,hestartedtoreadmy
accusationact:

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ThePresidentoftheMilitaryTribunalofIasi,sendstheafore
mentionedculprittothecourt:
Accordingtoarticle209,paragraph(a),forcrimeof
conspiracyagainstsocialorder;
Accordingtoarticle107,forcrimeofconspiracy;
Accordingtoarticle102,forcrimeofhightreason.
TheCourtwilljudgethecaseandgivethesentence,
accordingtotheproceduresfoundinthemilitarycriminal
law.Theculpritadmi edtotheaforementionedfacts
presentintheaccusationactinthestatementgiventothe
authoritiesofinquiries,withnopressure,willinglyand
signedbyownhand.

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Inthatmomenttherageoverwhelmedme.Iwastotally
silent.
Noticingthelookonmyface,thecolonel,inaless
authoritarianvoice,saidthattheculprit,thatbeingme,has
arighttodefense,usingalawyerhiredbyhim,andthatthis
lawyershouldknowhisclientsleuntilthedayoftrial,
whichwillstartonFebruary211949athours8a.m.
HethenhadmesignthatIacknowledgetheafore
mentioned.Igotnearthetable,tookthepaperhewas
handingtome,signeditandwithdrewbackagain.The
ocerwhotookmetothisroomthenescortedmebackto
thecell15inthebasement,accordingtothesameritual.As
thelightwasstillturnedoinsidethecell,Iwasunderthe
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falseimpressionthatIcouldcommunicatewithsomeone
abouthowitwentintheroomafewminutesback,likeina
normalcell.
IwassodisorientatedbythethingsIjustheard,thatfora
momentIaskedmyselfifwhatwasgoingonwithmewas
realityorjustabaddream,beingundertheinuenceof
coldandhunger.
IdonotrememberhowmuchtimepasseduntilIsawday
breakonthewindow.Myfeetwereheavy,feltasiftheywere
madeoflead.ThecoldwasoutofmybodyaerImoved
throughthecellabit,evenifitwasacoldwinteroutside,so
cold,therockswerecracking.Ilieddownonthemat

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dressedwithallmyclotheson,Ipulledthepatchyblanket
onmeandclosedmyeyes.
IdontknowhowmuchIsleptbutIwokebackupagain
eezingwhentheguardopenedthetinydoorunderthe
peepholetoaskforthemesstin.Ihardlymanagedtogetup
omtheoorandhandedittohim.Hethenslippeditback
tome.Itwaslledwithhotteawhichwarmedmybody
bringingmetomysensesagain.Istartedtorewindthe
movie omlastnight,tryingtodecipher,asmuchasI
could,thejudicialtermsintheaccusationact.Thecrimeof
hightreasonIconsideredtobethegravest.Asfarasthe
conspiracyisconcerned,theproofforthiswasthescenario
theystagedneartheFortressofSuceava.
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However,thatwhichunse ledandupsetmetoragewasthe
regretofnotsayingsomethingtothecolonelwhenhesaid:
statementgiventotheauthoritiesofinquiries,withno
pressure,willingly.IwashopingthatwhenIwillstudythis
leshouldertoshoulderwithmylawyer,hewillnoticethe
outrageousliesinthosestatements.
HownaiveanduntrainedIwasinma ersofcommunist
justice!OnlyaerthetrialIfoundoutwhatthisjusticeisall
about,howitisenforced,andwhoreallydecidesthe
sentences.

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TRIAL OF ERROR
(JUSTICE CHARADE)
Onthedayof21February1949thecelldooropenedandthe
sectionguardreadmynameandinvitedmetodressup.Witha
morehumanevoicehealsotoldme:Sir,thehourhascomefor
metoescortyoutotheaudienceroom,tothetrial!Ifeltjoy,
thinkingIwillseemycolleaguesandcomradesagain.
Iwasescortedtothegroundoor,wheretheinterrogations
weredone.Onapieceofcardboardstoodwri enAudience
room,roomopposedtotheprisonentrancedoor.WhenI
steppedin,Inoticeditwasimprovisedtolooklikeacourt.
Theroom,usuallyreservedformeetingsoftheprisonsta,
hadbeenremadetolooklikeacourtroom.
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Normallyatleast200personscouldtinthisroom.
EnteringitIwastakenbyanocerofsecuritywho,aerhe
shoutedmynameleadmetotherstbenchwheremy
supervisorMoisiusat,ankedbyPetricaTudoseandVirgil
LungeanutotheleandintherightbyMirceaBarsan,
nearwhomIgotseatedalso.
Moisiu,whenthesecurityocers18werentpayinga ention
tous,advisedustonotadmittoanything omthe
statementsgivenofown eewillandundernopressure.
Andthesameadvicetobegiventoothercomradeswhen
theywillentertheroom.

18

AlsoknowninRomanianasSecuris

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Aeralmostanhourallthecomrades omtheMedical
Universitywerebroughtinsidetheroom.Thesecurity
ocersforbadeustotalktoeachother.
Suddenly,Blehanenterstheroom,alldressedupina
securityuniform.Helookedatuswiththelookofa
marshal,deantandinsolent.Isuspectedthattheother
securityocersintheroomweretheinterrogation
executionersfortheothercities omthenorthernhalfof
Moldavia.
Atalmost9a.m.inthemorningthepanelofjudgesenters
theroom.Itconsistedof:
President:colonelIonGheorghe;

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Twoocerswhowerentmagistrates,butwerellingthe
rolesofpeopleevaluators;
Themilitaryprosecutor,amagistrate,thecourtclerkand
twotypists.
Thepresidentorderedthecourtclerktomaketheappealto
theculprits,andtothosewhosenameswerementionedin
theinterrogations,butwerenotyetarrested.Theculprits
whowerepresentnumbered123.Thosenotyetarrested
numberedmanymore.
Aertheappeal,theprosecutorreadtheaccusationactand
thereferencetocourtact.Iwasexpectingthebenchesinthe
backoftheroomtobeoccupiedbyourrelatives,aswellas
somekindofoutsideassistance.Thebenchesandtheroom
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remainedemptythough.Aeralmost2hours,TheCourt
interruptedthemeeting,forahalfanhourbreak,and
insidetheroomremainedonlyafewguardstokeepus om
talkingwitheachother,pretendingtheyarenotwatching
us.So,Ifoundoutthat omourgrouponly8personswere
sentencedtoisolation:Moisiu,Tudose,Lungeanu,Barsan,
Bordeianu,Parizianu,ScutaruandStamate.Wewereall
isolated omoneanotherwithoutknowingit,allinsidethe
basement.
IntheSuceavaprisonthewallsofthecellsweresothick,
thatthecommunicationwithnearcellscouldntbedonein
thenormalway,knockingintothecellwallswiththest,
repeatedly.
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Allofuswereisolatedunderthesameconditionsandwe
weretheonlyonestakenoutofourcellsduringnightto
facethepanelofjudges.Weallwereconvincedthatthey
organizedthischaradeinordertointimidateus.Theother
comradeswereisolatedintworooms.
Wewerewaitingforthelawyerstogetintouchwithusafew
dayspriortothecourtdate,inaccordancewiththelawso
theywouldhavehadenoughtimetostudyourles;also,we
wereexpectingoutsidehelplikeparents, iendsetc.
Afewmomentsbeforethepanelofjudgesenteredthecourt
room,twoindividualsappearedintheroom,onedressedin
anewlyboughtsheepskinboughtofcoursebythe
securityocersandtheotheronedressedwithashort
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housemadewooljacket.Theylookedsosuspiciousand
pointlessthatwewereaskingourselveswhatwastheuseof
thembeingthere.Theywerent omourrelatives,nor om
iendsorfamiliars,inorderforthemtojustifytheir
presenceinsidethecourtroomandtheywerentpartofthe
panelofjudgesassistance.Takingacloserlookatthem,I
concludedthattheywereprepared,dulytrainedandcame
withacertainpurpose,purposewhichwewoulddiscover
onlylater.
Oncethepanelofjudgeswasseated,thetwoindividuals,as
ifsomeonegavethemthestart,startedshoutingwithall
theirstrength:Deathtothem!Deathtothem!

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Hearingthesewords,Moisiu,superiorofourlot,without
askingpermission omthecourtPresident,gotuponhis
feetand,addressingtheseintrudersinanirritatedand
strongvoice:Heyyou,whoareyoutalkingtointhat
manner,sayingdeathtothem?Wewerelookingatthe
intruderssurprised.Someonewhowaspartofthepanelof
judgessignaledtothemandtheystartedshoutingwith
evenmorestrength:Deathtothem!
Aerthat,thecourtPresident,colonelIonGheorghe,told
Moisiuhewasntallowedtotalk,normove omtheposition
thecourttoldhimtobeinandthatthequestionswillonly
beaddressedtothepanelofjudges.

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ThenMoisiu,acunningintellectualandgoodorator,
addressedaquestiontotheCourtandPresidentinthe
nameofthoseaccused,askingthemtorevealtheidentityof
thetwointruderswhoshoutedDeathtothem!,aswellas
thepartwhichtheyhadinthistrial.
ThePresidentthenrepliedthetwowererepresentingthe
workingclassandthattheyhadthelawgivenrighttoassist
atthetrial,becausethetrialwaspublicandanyRomanian
citizencouldassistthedebates.
Moisiubecameenragedandinanaggressivetonerepliedto
thePresident:IfthetrialispublicandanyRomanian
citizenisallowedtotakepartatitsdebates,then,Mr.
President,pleasetellmewhyourparents,brothers,other
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relativesand iendsorothercitizensaswellcannotbe
foundinthiscourtroom?ThePresidentthenreplied:This
problemdoesntconcernyou!.
Moisiu,moreenraged:Ifthisdoesntconcernme,then
neitheryourhonorsshouldbeconcernedifIwontanswer
thequestionsaddressedtomebytheCourt.ThePresidents
replywasbrutal:Youandalltheculpritsareobligatedto
answertheCourt,otherwiseshehaswaysofmakingyou
talk!.
Then,Moisiureplies,isthispanelofjudgesapanelof
interrogation?

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ThePresident,moremenacing:Iambringingtoyour
a entionthatanyoenseandinsultbroughttothisCourt
canbepunishedaccordingtolaw.
Thelawyouuse,Mr.President,isthelawofthest,thelaw
ofthejungle,Moisiureplies,becausehecouldntre ain.
ThePresident,enraged,gotup omhisseatandinan
authoritariantonethreatenedMoisiuthat,ifhedaresto
makesuchclaimsagain,itwillcosthimdearly.
Wewerefacingatragicomedysituationandwedidnot
knowwhattothink.
Wereweinacourtoflawforrealorinacharade?Eachof
usrealizedthoughthatnoma erwhatwesaiditdidnt
ma er,becausethispanelofjudgeswastold,evenbefore
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theyenteredthiscourtroom,howtojudgeandwhat
sentencetogivetoeachoftheculprits.
Aertheprosecutorreadtheprosecutionsactofeachofus,
completewithincriminatingdata,askedthatforeachofus
begiventhemaximumsentence,accordingtothearticlein
thecriminalcode.
Butthehorrendousinjusticecouldbeseenclearlywhenthe
Presidentannouncedinthecourtthattheculpritshavea
righttodefend.Whilehewassayingthat,veindividuals
dressedincivilianclothes,asiftheyweretrainedtodoso,
appearedinthecourtroomandsatdownonabenchnear
thewindow,closetothepanelofjudgestable.Theywere
noneothersthanthedefensea orneys.
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ThePresident,addressingthem,saidthateachofthemhas
todefend10culprits,invitingthemtogetintouchwith
theirclientsatonce.Then,turningtowardus,tellsus:Its
afavortohavestateappointedlawyers!
Thea orneysreceivedourcaselesand,aerthePresident
gavetoeacha orneyhislistofculprits,theyeachtooktheir
shareofculpritswhomtheyhadtodefend.Thea orneys
leafedthroughthelesfor10minutes,andthePresident
askedthemtoplacethemonthetable,withoutthemeven
havingpropertimetoknowwhatisinthoseles.
Facingthismorethanridiculousshow,weallbecame
petried,realizingthatwewereinthemiddleofastage

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whichwasntatrial,neitheradefense,butasinistercharade
inwhichtheonlythingrealwastheprosecution.
Thatpretenseofatrialendedatabout6oclockinthe
aernoon.Wewerethenescortedeachbacktohiscell,but
notbeforewewereannouncedbytheCourtthatthenext
day,at8oclockinthemorning,thetrialwillberesumed.
Thenextday,22February1949,morning,wewereagain
broughttothemeetingroom(nowcourtroom),wherewe
wereseatedasfollows:thelotsuperior,thefourunit
superiors,thenScutaruandParizianu,formingagroup.
Thelotsuperior,si ingattheextremityofthebench,
addressedthelawyerwhohadtodefendus,askinghimifhe
wasthisgroupsdefensea orney.
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Themostshamefulthingandthebreakingofeventhemost
elementaryideaofjusticeconcerningthedefensewasthe
factthatthedefensea orneydidnotevenhavethe
accusedsleonhim,thelebeingreplacedbyafewsheets
ofpaperbythePresidentandgiventohiminsteadofthe
le.Then,thePresident,concludingthatthejudicial
procedurewascarriedout,shouldgivedefensetherightto
speak.
Theystartedwiththerstculprit,lotsuperiorMoisiu
Dumitru.ThePresidentordersMoisiu,beingjudgedasalot
superior,togetup.Stupor!Insteadofgivingthedefense
a orneytherighttospeakimmediatelyaer,thePresident,
againstanylaws,gavethepublicprosecutorrighttospeak.
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Theprosecutordidntmaketheindictment,becausehehad
alreadymadeoneforeachculprit.Aboutoursuperiorhe
saidthefollowing:
MoisiuDumitru,thisdangerousindividual,organizeda
groupoflegionnairesinsidetheMedicalUniversity,forthe
reasonofconspiringagainstthesocialorderinstalledinour
country.Heorganizedandpreparedacoupagainstthe
Stateand,whatisevenmoregrave,isthefactthatthis
individualgatheredintelligence omhisunderlingsand
otherpersonsaswell,channelingthemtoaforeignpower.
Thus,thepublicprosecutor,representingtheworkingclass
inR.P.R.,asksthatforthisculpritbegiventhemaximum
sentencestipulatedinthecriminallaw.Intheaccusations
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lewecanndevidencewhichtellusthatthepolice,at
theirarrest,foundtheminthemiddleofoneoftheir
legionnairemeetingstrainingpeoplewithweaponsstolen
ommilitarybases,preparingthemforacoup.TheCourt
cansee,forthemselves,allthisevidenceintheaccusations
le.
Aerthat,theprosecutormadeamistake,askingthecourt
clerktoreadinsidethecourtaboutwhatMoisiuwasdoing
togetherwiththeengineerTarniceruatAlbaIulia,inthe
timeofourhiding,in1944,whentheUniversityofIasihad
beenmovedtothatcity.
Hereiswhatthecourtclerkread,literally:Thisdungeon
keeper(hewasreferringtoTarnicerutheengineer)raised,
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togetherwiththismoisu(Moisiu)atraista(Troita,wayside
crucix),onthespotHorea,Cluseu(Closca)and
Crisu(Crisan)19werecrushedwiththeheel(wheel).The
entirecourtburstinlaughter, omthepanelofjudgesto
thetypist.Theprosecutor,clearlyembarrassed,yelledatthe
courtclerktopaymorea entionatreading.Itcouldbe
clearlyseenwhattypeofpeoplewerecalledtorecordthe
testimonies.

19

The Revolt of Horea, Cloca and Crian (31 October 1784 - 14 December 1784) began in Zarand
County, Transylvania, but it soon spread all throughout all the Transylvania and Apuseni Mountains.
Their main demands were related to the feudal serfdom state of Romanians and the political equality
between Romanians in Ardeal (Romanian denomination for Transylvania), by that time predominant by
number, and the other nations: Hungarians, Germans and Szeklers.The leaders were Horea (Vasile Ursu
Nicola, 1731 - 1785), Cloca (Ion Oarg, 1747 - 1785) and Crian (Marcu Giurgiu, 1733 - 1785).They
fought at Cmpeni, Abrud and Roia and defeated the Austrian Imperial Army at Brad and Hlmagiu on
27 November 1784.The revolt was ceased by Horea in 14 December 1784, at Cmpeni and afterwards, by
treason, in January 1785, the leaders were caught. Horea and Cloca were executed by breaking on the
wheel on 28 February 1785 at Dealul Furcilor (Forks Hill), Alba-Iulia. Crian hanged himself on the night
before the execution.

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Intheend,theprosecutorenforcedhisspeech:Theculprit,
inhisstatement,admitstheaccusationsaregenuine,ofhis
own eewill,undernopressure omanyone,andsigns
withhisownhand.
Thepresidentthengavethewordtothedefensea orney,
who,ashestoodup,openedthele omwhichhetooka
papercontainingsomethingwri en,preparedbeforethe
trial,andherepeatedtheprosecutorsexactwords.So,our
defensea orneyturnedhimselfintoanaccuser,totally
ignoringthefactthathewascalledtheretodefendthe
culprit,andnotaccusehim.
Facingthissituation,wheneventhemostbasicprinciplesof
justiceandlawwereignored,andevenmoresotrampled
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uponsoshamelessly,Moisiu,whocouldntcalmhisnerves
anylonger,stoodupandaddressedthea orney:Sir,we
didnothireyouasaprosecutor,andiftheTribunal
appointedyouasadefensea orney,whatareyoudoing?
Insteadofdefendingme,youareaccusingme.Youarenota
lawyer,youareabumtakenothestreetandbroughthere.
Youarereading omapaperothershavepreparedforyou.
Shameonsuchalawyer!Where,inwhatlawyerbooksdid
youreaditislegaltodowhatyouaredoing?Ididnothire
youasadefensea orneyandIdontneedyourservices!
Therewerenopublicwitnessesinsidethecourtroom,beside
thetwoindividualswhoneverstoppedyelling:Deathto
him!Deathtohim!Hearingthemyelling,Moisiureplied:
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Heyyoutwo!Takeabreak,drinksomemorebrandy,your
voicesarehoarse omallthisshouting<<deathtohim>>!
Inthismoment,themeetingbecameacircus.Anocer
omthepanelofjudgeswentoutoftheroomonthe
corridorandimmediatelyaerwardsmorearmedguards
andafewsecurityocersenteredtheroom,amongwhom
Blehanwastoo.
ThePresidentmadethemistakeofgivingMoisiuhisturnto
speak.Thisman,withhisverveandintelligence,pleadedfor
himselfandhiscomradesandhepleadedsowellthatifhe
hadbeenrecorded,ThePresidentorderedthecourtclerk
andthetypistsnottorecordanything omwhatMoisiu
saidhewouldhavebecomeamodelforallthelawyers
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worldwide.Insteadofbeingadefendant,Moisiubecamea
defensea orney,destroyingallthattheprosecutor
previouslyhadbeenstating.
Theevidenceintheleshedeclaredasbeingsetupsand
blatantliesinventedbytheinterrogatorsbecausenoneof
hiscomradesinhissubordinationwasevercaughtof
havingmeetingsortrainingwithguns.Thefalsemeetings
evidencewasenactedatthestartofNovemberonthe
plateaunearTheFortressofSuceava.Inthesephotos
everyonecouldseethatallthecomradeshadtheirhair
trimmedthesameheight.Thoseweaponswhichthepolice
photographedweretaken omthetroopsthatguardedthe
setupwhoforcedtheprisonerstocarrythem.Butthemost
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disgustingthingwasthatMoisiussubordinateswereforced
toposeasothercomradesoftheirswhohaventyetbeen
arrested,andthecommunistsneededthemtobe.
Moisiugaveconcreteexamples:BordeianuDumitruposed
ashisbrotherIonBordeianuwhostudiedatPolytechnics.A
mancannotbeintwoplacesatthesametime.Thenhe
askedthemtocomparetheevidenceoftheMedical
UniversitylewiththeevidenceofthePolytechnics om
Iasisle.Asfarasnotpressuredbyanyoneisgoes,thatis
anoutrageouslieaddedlatertothestatementbecausethey
didnotdeclareanythinglikethatinneitheroftheirprior
statements.Heaskedthemtoshowhimwheresuchathing
waswri en,ifitexistedanyway.Andtoprovehiscase,
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Moisiuaddedthathecanbringin ontofthepanelof
judgesandthedefenseprooftoshowthemhowtheygave
theirwillinglyandundernopressurestatements.
Finishingwhathehadtosayhetossedhiscoatandshirt
away,showinghisbodyfullofwoundsstillnothealed.
Seeingthis,thetwotypistgirls,notrealizingwherethey
were,exclaimedsuddenlyinonevoice:OhGod,what
terriblewounds!.ThePresidentorderedthemtoleavethe
court.
Thepanelofjudges,in ontofthisspectacle,wereso
confusedthattheydidntknowwhattodo.
Moisiukeptonshoutingashardashecould:My
comradesandIwerebeaten,tormentedandtortured,5
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monthstime,inthemostterribleways,bythesebullies
BlehanandDanielevici.
Outofthefearthatthetrialcouldtakeanunforeseenturn
ofeventsandthattheprosecutor,courtclerkandlawyers
couldseethesamewoundsonourbodiesaswell,the
President,whileweweretakingoourclothes,suspended
thetrial.
Moisiuwasthentakenoutoftheroombythesecurity
ocers(Securitate),andtheCourtletheroom.Thetwo
intruderswhohadbeentheassistanceintheroom,
suddenlyawakened omtheirdrunkenness,seeingwhat
wasgoingon,addressedoneanother:Comeonman,lets
getoutofhere,dontyouseewhatsgoingonhere?Doyou
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wantmykidstoremainfatherless?Iamasimplemanand
thesepeopleforcedmetobehere.Aerthetwowentaway,
theroomwaslewithnopublicassistance.
Aerhalfanhour,thepanelofjudgesenterstheroomand
taketheirseatsatthetable.Ali lewhileaerthat,Moisiu
wasbroughtbackinsidetheroom,aidedbytwoguards,
becausehewassoseverelybeatenthathecouldntgetup
anymore.Theexecutioners,inalltheirhatredandcruelty,
hithimwiththeoxvalvemakinghisbodyallwounds om
whichstreamsofbloodwereowing.Wewereconvincedthe
panelofjudgesknewwhathappenedoutsidewithMoisiu.
WhenMoisiuwasseatedagainonthebenchaidedbythe
twoguards,heyelledstill:Hereisyourproofmr.President,
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whatmoreproofdoyouwantthanthese eshwounds
whichcanbeseenonmyfaceandbody,theseexecutioners
torturedmerightin ontofyoureyes,rightin ontofthe
panelofjudges.AndwhileMoisiufellonhisfaceonthe
bench,thepresident,cynically,repliedthatthisincident
wasntenoughofareasontogranthimmitigating
circumstances.Communistjustice!
Moisiuwasthenevacuated omtheroom,andthetrial
continuedasasimpleformality.Thecomradesletgoof
theirdefensewhichnowbecamepartoftheaccusation.We
allstoodbywhatMoisiupreviouslystatedinthecourtroom,
concerningthesetupnearthefortressofSuceavaonthe

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plateauandwedidnotadmitatallthatwegaveour
statementswillinglyandundernopressure.
Severalhourslaterthetrialwasover,withoutthecourtclerk
everrecordingabitofourdefensehearing.Buttheydid
recordeverythingthattheprosecutorandthedefense
a orneysturnedintoaccuserssaid.
TheCourtdeclaredthatthetrialforourlotisdone,and
thatitwasdoneaccordingtothelawandannouncedthat
thesentenceofeachoftheculpritswillbepronouncedthe
verynextday,February231949.
Followingthisinjusticeofjustice,wewereevacuated om
theroomandescortedeachbacktohiscell.Thenextdaywe

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wereleadbackagain,allourlot,insidethecourtroom.In
theroomanairoffuneralreigned.
ThePresident,grave,startedthemeeting,tellingustopay
a entionwhenthesentencewillbereadandtheonewho
willhearhisnamestandup.
TherstsentencedwasMoisiuDumitru,to20yearsof
forcedlaborforthecrimeofplo ingagainstthesocial
order,15yearsforhightreasonand12yearsforthecrimeof
conspiration.
Moisiudidntstandupbecausehecouldntstandonhisfeet
anymoreandthePresidentmadethemistakeof
admonishinghimforthis.Moisiu,faintandinanalmost
dyingvoice,replied:Withsuchapanelofjudges,
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prosecutionandjustice,nothingislebuttogetbacktothe
interrogationsandthetorturesweweresubjectedtobefore.
Sowewontstandup,weareturningourbacksandwe
shouldleavetheroom.TheCourtdidnotreplyanymore.
Twosentencesfollowed,18and10yearseach,toforcedlabor,
forParizianuGheorgheandScutaruIon.
TudosePetre,LungeanuVirgil,BarsanMirceaand
BordeianuDumitrueachgot15,10,10and15yearsof
prison.Therestofthelotgotbetween5and12.Besidethese
sentences,toeachofuswerealsoappliedthefollowing
penalties:seizureofpropertyandgoods,civicdegradation
om5to15yearsandwewouldhavetopayforthejudicial
feeswhichvariedbetween5000and20000lei.Aerthe
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pronunciationofthesentence,forthreedays,wehadthe
righttoanappeal,butnoonedidappeal,simplybecause
untilthennoappealmadethesentencesanyeasier,infact
eachtimetheygotlonger.
Thecourtmeetingwasnishedandwewereleadbackto
ourcells.In ontofmycell,someoneaskedme:Dothese
numbershaveasignicanceoristhereaconnection
betweenmansdestinyandcertainnumbers?Inmy
destiny,mydayofbirthwas15,cellnumberwas15aswellas
15yearsthesentenceofforcedlaborIgot.
Iwillendthischapterkeepinginmindthatthejusticedid
notserverighteousness,beingatthemercyofthest.
Inconclusion:
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Allthestatementstorn omthoseinSuceavaprison,aswell
asinalltheinterrogatoriescountrywide,hadbeentorn
omtheprisonerswiththeuseofhorrendoustortures;
Therewerecomradeswho,aerthesetorturesended,either
commi edsuicide,throwingthemselvesoutthewindow,
eitherdied,beingtakenGodknowswhere;
Thetrialwasdonebymagistrateswhoacceptedtojudge
andenforcethelawaccordingtohowtheyweretoldto;
Allthesentencesweregivennotbythepanelofjudges,
accordingtocriminalprocedures,butinthepartyoces;
Asfarasthedefencegoes,itwasnonexistent,becausethe
lawyerswereappointedbythepartyandnothiredbythe
defendants; omdefensea orneys,theybecame
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prosecutors,doingnothingbutrepeat,accordingtoa
wri enconsent,thesameaccusationastheprosecutors;
Thedateofthetrialwasntannouncedtoanymemberofthe
defendantsfamilies;
Thecourtroomsdidnothavepublicwitnesses,thetrials
beingdoneinsecret.Notevencloserelativesofthe
defendantswereallowedtoassistthetrial.InSuceavascase,
thetwoindividualswhodemandedourdeathsweretheonly
publicassistanceinthetrial.
Thetrialofthosepeople omtheMedicalUniversityof
Iasislotwasidenticaltothetrialsofalltheotherlotsin
Suceavaprison.

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Whatwouldhavebeenthereactionofaman omthe
civilizedworld,seeingthat,foranideawhichisputinthe
serviceofthetruth,ofjustice,offaithinGodandlovefor
hisneighbor,acertainyoungpopulationwasinterrogated
andtortured,sometimestothedeath,onlytobejudgedand
condemnedaerwards?

AFTER THE TRIAL


Followingthetrial,aperiodinwhichyoucouldntforesee
anythinganymorebegan.Thetrialleuswithnohopefor
everreturningtotheworld omwhichweweretaken om.

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AndIreproachedmyselfbecauseIdidnothavethea itude
Moisiuhadduringthetrial.
Thethingswhichoccurredscarredmysoulsomuch,thatI
couldntthinkanymore.Iwasseeingmyselfasamanloston
aseainaboat,beingatthemercyofthewaves,andmy
strengthtoweaktopaddle.
Outsideblizzardand ost,andmycellitwasalllikeabig
icicle,itseemedlikeeventhebloodinmyveinsdidnotow
anymore.MyhungerwaseverpresentandIwouldhave
eatenrubbleanddeadanimalsinordertonotletiteatme
rst,hungerwhichwasgnawingatmystomachlikearat.
Aerafewdays,onemorning,thedooropenedandas
usual,theguardonthatparticularsection,whoknewmy
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sentence,readmynamewri enontheeverpresentpieceof
paperandwarnedmetopackmystuinordertohaveme
transferredtoanothercell.Itookmyfewclotheswithme
andItookonelastlookinsidethecellwhichIwillnever
forgetuntilthemomentofmydeath.Iscreamedlikea
hungrywolfinit,Ishoutedinsideit,bangedmyheadonits
walls,wentdowntothepitsofhellinitwhileclingingona
pieceofHeaven.ItwastherewhereIchoseHeavenand
forgavethosewhohurtme.ItwastherewhereIunderstood
thatthereisOnlyOneWay,OnlyOneTruthandOnlyOne
Life,thatoftheSonofManintheesh.

CELL 121
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Fromcellno.15,theguardtookmetotherstoor,cell121,
situatedinthenorthsideoftheprison.Eachsectionofthe
northsidehad60cellseach,theprisonbeingsquare
shaped.WhenIarrivedin ontofthecelldoor,I
memorizedthelasttwodigitsofthenumber121(21)which
corresponded,inmymind,withthelastdigitsofmybirth
year(1921).Abizarregameofgures,dates,20so
meaningful.Whentheguardopenedthedoor,Iwasvery
surprisedtoseePetricaTudose, iend,comradeand
colleague,bearingthesamesentenceasme.

20

thiscouldmeaneverlastinglifealso,becauseitisveryuncommonforamantolivetothatage)

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Amongothercomrades omtheUniversitylot,whohad
beentrialedbeforeus,wasGhitaBarbieru,whomIknew
omsight.ThisheartedmanIwillneverforget.As
intellectual,heonlynishedgymnasium,buthiskindness
hadnolimits.HewasamongthefewpeopleofthoseImet
alivebehindbarswhogavemethekeytocloseandopenthe
doorwhichseparatedme omtheworldIwascoming om.
Atrst,theairwasabitburdensome,becausewewere
convictedandourthoughtsew,unwillingly,totheoneswe
lebehind:parents,brothers,wives,children, iends,
peopleweknew,etc.BadiaGhita,whohadbeentrialedin
therstlottheinterrogationswereverypainfulforhim,
laterdyingbecauseofthem,nevercomplained.
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IntheprisonsIvebeenthroughImetalotofpeople, om
doorkeeperstosecretaries, ompeoplewhowerenot
schooled,touniversityprofessorsandscientists, om
demons,toangels.
BadiaGhitaremainedinmyheartasbeingthetypeofman
who,evenifyouwantedtoforgethim,younevercould.In
allmyyearsofprisonImetfewsoulslikehis.The
conversationswithmycolleagueTudoseandthemoments
whenBadiaGhitaintervenedinthemwerethemost
benecialthingsinsidethatcell.
AtthestartofMarch,whenthewinterwasstilltoughat
Suceava,withcoldandsnowfall,IsawsomethingelseIwont
everforget.Somethingwashappeningwiththeyoungmen
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whodidnotunderstandtheirtruecall.Moreexactly,itwas
thestartofthesocalledreeducationatSuceava.
Thecellwasge ingwarmer,literallyandguratively
speaking.Wewerealllegionnairesandalltheconversations
underwentpeacefullybetweenus.Eventhecolddieddown
abit,duetothefactthatnowweweresixinsidethecelland
weweresleepingonthebunksinsteadofsleepingonthe
matontheoor.
Theonlyonewhodidnottakepartinourconversations,
beingcontentwithjustlistening,wasBadiaGhita.We
respectedhimbecausehewasolderandhehadalong
historyofghting.Onagoodday,whenourdiscussions

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reachedadeadend,BadiaGhita,withawarmvoice,started
tosharehisthoughtswithus.
Iwillquote ommymemorythewordswhichweremy
guidinglightallthetimeinthe15yearsofprison:Dear
lads!Youareallschooledpeople,youngerthanme,ba le
hardenedyourselves,butIbegyouasifyouweremyown
children,tolistencarefullyandingoodwilltowhatIwantto
tellyou.Weareallconvictedtoheavyyearsofprisonand
eachofuslebehindaworldwhichwasourworldand
whichwecannotforget.Someofushadaprofession,and
you,theyoungerones,werege ingthere.Wewereall
engagedinservinganidealandacausewhichwe
consideredtoberight.Neitheryou,norme,hurtanyone.
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Wewereinterrogated,tortured,trialedandsentencedas
youknow,butIbegyouwithallmyhearttogiveheedto
whatIhavetosay.Forapoliticalprisoner,thesentenceis
somethingthatmayormaynotcome.Soitispossiblewe
willserveallofoursentence,anditispossiblewedont.
Whatismoreimportantthough,isthatwemayserve
somethingmore,morethanweweresentencedto.Itis
possibleweareconvictedagainandwemaydieinprison.
Ourtimeinprisonisnotyetpermanentlydecided.Wecome
omaworldwhichhumanhatredtookaway omus,
maybeforever,andweareenteringanother,thisone.This
worldandonlythisoneisourworld omnowon.Forus
thereisntanyotherworldthantheoneweareinrightnow
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andweliveherenow.And,tobeabletoliveinthisworld,
mydears,youmustknowthatonlyhewhohasagoodheart
canlastandunderstandthatwhichtheunknowncanoer
us.Thoseofyouwhowillunderstandwhatagoodheart
means,willneverforgetwhatwediscussedheretoday.In
conclusion,Iamtellingyou:inordertowithstandandbe
happyandsatisedinlife,withyourselfandtheones
aroundyou,youmusthaveagoodheart.Youdoasyou
believedependingonyourheart.Iunderstoodthiswise
manandfollowedhisadvice,allmylife.
Inthenextdays,takingthewastebuckettothetoiletto
emptyit,IhadtheopportunitytotalkwithTudose,
privately.Iaskedhimthen,whatdidBadiaGhitameant
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whenhesaidagoodheart;herepliedthatthestoryabout
thegoodhearthedidnotunderstandandneverwill.It
wastruethatTudosedidntunderstand,becausehedidnot
understandthatthehumanbeingcouldliveaccordingto
themysteriousvoiceofhisheartaswell,notonlyaccording
tohisbrainpower.IhonestlyrepliedtoTudosethatIdidnot
understandthatphilosophyeither,butincontrasttohim,I
willtrytounderstandwhatthatgoodheartmeansthat
BadiaGhitawastalkingabout.Timewouldshedlighton
this.
Thesecondeventincell121whichIwonteverforgetalso,
wasthefollowing:

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Inthecellrightnexttous,besideourcomrades,wasaman
omSuceava,olderthanus,marriedwiththreechildren.
Hewasright omSuceavaandbecausetheguardsinthose
timeswerentintoxicatedwithproletariandoctrine,they
coulddosomefavorstothosewhomtheyknewandwhom
theytrusted.So,mycomrade omthecellnextdoorknew
theguardandtrustedhim.Butmaybetheguardwas
remuneratedforthefavorshedidtohisfellowcitizen.
Onthattimeyoucouldstilllookoutthewindowwithout
beingpunishedforthat,thatprohibitioncameintoeect
laterintheSpringof1954,whenshu ers(blinders)were
placedonthewindowsinalltheprisonsinthecountry(the
blinderspositionwasslanted,sotheaircouldcomeintothe
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cellbutyoucouldntseeoutside).Thepunishmentforthose
whotriedtomovetheblinderstolookoutsidewassevere
arrestfor15days,ofcoursethatisiftheywerecaughtbythe
guardwho omtimetotimelookedinsidethecellthrough
thepeepholeonthecelldoor.Someprisoners,sentenced
withtheseverearrest,didnotmakeitoutalive omthere.
Duetothefactthatpeoplecouldlookoutthewindow,you
couldcommunicatetoothercells.Butonlyatnight,when
theguarddidnotwalkaroundunderthewindowstospot
thecells.ThiswayIgotintouchwiththose omthenext
celltotheleofus,whowarnedusthattonightawoman
willcomeandwaitinthestreetnearthelitpole,thewifeofa
comrade omthenextcell.Thesectionguardtaughthim
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thesignalswhichwillhelphimrecognizehiswifeand
children.Keepinmindthatinthosetimes,inprison,there
werenoinformersorratspresentyet,sotheinmatestrusted
oneanotherandtheguardstoo,whokepttheir
relationshipsasecret.
ItwasthestartofMarch,andoutsideitwasstillcoldwinter,
windandsnow.Hereishowithappened:50metersaway,
nearthelitpole,Isawawomanwithasmallchildinher
arms,andnearher,othertwochildren,between4and6
yearsold.Theylookedtowardsthecellwindowandwaved
theirhankiestotheirfather,whosignaledbacktothemtoo.
Fromthecellyoucouldseewellinthestreet,thewoman
andthechildrenbeinglightedbythepoleandthegli erof
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thesnowundertheirfeet.Whenwesawthem,innocent
souls,withtheirhandsraised,signalingtheirfather,we
startedcrying.Amotherandherchicks,inthecold,crying
andwipingherfacewithherhandkerchief,andtheirfather
lockedbehindbars,comfortingthemonlywithhiseyes.
Thoseofyouwhohavechildren,trytoimagine,atleastfora
moment,thisscene.
Thisspectaclerepeateditselfnightsinarowuntilthe
soldierwhowasinthepotpegalertedthemanagementof
theprisonandthepoliticalocer.Aerthisdenunciation
thescenewhichwassodramaticdisappearedaswellasthe
fatherand,notaerlong,theguardonoursectiontoo.

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THE RE-EDUCATION AT
SUCEAVA

Thewordreeducation,had,forme,suchasinister
meaning,thatIdidnotsucceedinexplainingittomyself.
Whatdoesthatmean,reeducatingmyself?Andwhat
shouldIreeducateinmemoreprecisely?Tochangemyway
oflife,giveupmymentality,renouncemyfaith,myviewof
theworldandlife,renouncemydream,myght?What
partofmeshouldIrelinquish?MyfaithinGodandmylove
forHim?ShouldIreplaceHisGospelwithproletarian
ideology,loveformyneighborwithhatredandtheclasswar,
thetruthwithlies,honestywithhypocrisy,harmonywith
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terror,mercywithviolence?ShouldIchaseGodaway om
mysoulandinstallthepartyinHisstead?ShouldIhate
andratonmyfamilyand iends,shouldIliveinastate
ofterror,fear,distrust,suspicion,insecurity?Inconclusion,
shouldIgivemyselfup,andreplaceallofmyselfwith
satansreign,tobowdownandobeyhim,idolizingthe
party,asthenewlyformedgod,toadoptthereligionof
communismthereligionoftheevilone.
Theoneswhocouldgiveconcreteinformationandcould
shedlightonthissatanicplayaregone:Turcanu,executed
byhismasters,andBogdanovici,killedbyTurcanu.Because
ofthis,theinceptionsofthereeducationremaintotally
unknown.
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Whathasbeenheardandwhatisknownthough?Inthe
summerorautumnof1948,intheprisonwefoundoutthat
Bogdanovicihadmetwithaspeaker,21asPopaTanu(who
sharedthecellwithme)andsomeotherpeoplestated.But
thisspeakerwasntsolicitedbyBogdanovici,hewassent
bythepartyoceinSuceavaandofcourse,approvedbythe
onesinBucharest.AspeakerforBogdanovicisfathermore
exactly,whowastheprefectofBotosaniinthosetimes.It
wasrumoredthatthisspeakertalkedonlytothefather
andtheson,withnootherwitnessesbeingpresentattheir
meetings.AertheirtalkthereeducationatSuceavacame
intobeing.Incommunismnothingisdoneatrandom,so
theactionsofthisspeakerwereplannedlongbeforethey

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wereputintopractice,directedandorganizeddowntothe
smallestdetails.
AlsotherumorwasthatBogdanovicisfatherbeggedhisson
torenouncehispoliticalviewsanddoeverythingtosave
himselfphysically.
FromtheoneswhohelpedBogdanovici(hisintimateones)
wefoundoutthat,inthetimepriortohisarrest,healways
foughtwithhisfatherandmotherbecauseofpolitics,many
timeshismotherwouldhavetointervenebetweenhimand
hisfathertostoptheargument.
Thereisthequestionthough:WhydidBogdanoviciget
suchabigsentence,ifheacceptedtobetheleaderandthe
onewhowouldstartthereeducation?Intheself
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denouncements22ofPitestiand omtheoneswhosuered
thereIfoundoutthathewasnttheonewhoinitiatedthere
educationsatSuceavathough,because,accordingtohis
thinking,thereeducationhadtobeawillfuland
consensualact,andinnoway,anactofconstraintand
violence.Ifhehadbeeninaccordwithviolence,hewould
havebeenrehabilitatedandnotkilled.Iaskmyreadersto
forgivemyanticipation,butwhatIhavetosaynowisclosely
relatedwiththeinceptionofthereeducationatSuceava
andsoBogdanoviciscaseaswell.
Imaybe,andIsaymaybe,theonlystudentwhomet
BogdanovicibeforehediedTurcanuwasntpaying
a entioneitherandthishelped.IsawBogdanoviciwhilehe

22

Re-educa ontechnique

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wasescorted omthe4thhospitalroomwherethe
statementsweredone,toagroundoorcell;Iwasbeing
escortedatthesametime, omthe3rdbasementroomand
takentowardsthe4thhospitalroom,tothe1stoor.So,we
metonthestairs,halfwaybetweengroundoorand1st
oor.Whenwecamefacetoface,wewerebothholdingonto
thebalustradeonemeterthick.Iwasntaidedbytheguard,
buthecouldntwalkwithouttheguardsaid;becauseofthis
fact,whenwecameneareachother,wehadtomakewayfor
eachother,becausewewerebothholdingontothe
balustrade.TheguardleanedBogdanoviciagainstthewall,
sustaininghimsohewouldntfalldown,tomakewayfor
metopassalongthebalustrade.Theguardswerebehindus
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andwhenwegotclosetoeachotherwecouldlookineach
otherseyes.
Theguardsdidntintervene,thatshowterriedtheywere
becauseofwhattheywereseeing.Bogdanovicistilltrusted
me.InthattimeIwasnotyetfallen omTheDivineGrace,I
wasntyetcrumbledandthatswhycommunicationbetween
ustwowaspossible.Hisenormoushead,withhiseyessunk
deepintohiseyesocketsthiswastheonlythinglealive
inhimscaredyou;youcouldreadthesueringwhichhe
causedtothethousandsofourcomradesinhiseyes.
Thatlook,ofadeadmanwithhiseyesstillalive,haunted
meuntilnowwhenIwritethesepagesandwillcontinueto
hauntmeuntilthetimeofmydeath.Thatmomentwhen
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oureyesmet,inadyingvoice,butclearenough,
Bogdanoviciwhisperedtome:Brother!Thisishow
mistakesarepaid!.
Oureyescouldntturnaway omoneanother,butthe
guardspushedusinonevoice:Comeon!.
Aer2daysBogdanovicidied,sadisticallykilledbyTurcanu,
Popa,MartinasandLivinschi.AndIdonotbelievethere
wasamanmoretorturedthanhewasinPitesti.Iamnot
tryingtodefendhim,Godforbid!ButIamaskingmyself:
whosueredasbadasBogdanovici?Whocollectedasmuch
sueringashedid,inhiseyes?WhatIfeltandsawwithmy
owneyesleadsmetobelievethatBogdanoviciwasntan

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informeroramurderer.Hewasnotcapabletokill.Inhis
mindtherewasnoroomforviolence.
BogdanoviciwasthesuperioroftheUniversityinIasi,ofthe
FacultiesofLaw,LiteratureandPhilosophy,Science
(Mathematics,PhysicsandGeography).TheMedical,
PharmacyandPolytechnicswereseparated,andthe
superioroftheentirelegionarystudentsgroupwasNeculai
Simionescu,Lawstudent.Hewas omSoroca,Basarabia,
andinthehidingof19401941,hewasonly12yearsold.
Fromthesummerof1941,untilthespringof1944,helived
inSoroca.
HedidnotdenounceTurcanu,assometold,without
knowingthetruth,butStefanCaciuc,Turcanushighschool
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aswellasclassmateatCampulungMoldovenesc,andlater,
TurcanuscolleagueattheFacultyofLawinIasi.
TurcanuwaspartoftheF.D.C.23onlyin19401941and,since
January1941,heletheLegionaryMovement.In1940he
wasonly14yearsold.
Turcanuknewabouttheactivitiesofthelegionnairessince
backinhighschoolinCampulungMoldovenescupuntil
1944.Aerthathegraduatedthehighschoolandsignedup
fortheFacultyofLawinIasi.Hewasmarriedanddidnot
a endclassesyouwereonlyneededtobepresentatthe
exams.
So,inIasi,BogdanovicididnottalkwithTurcanuatall,but
StefanCaciucdid.

23

TheChris anDemocratForum

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Theyrstmetin1946,atsomeexams,andCaciucasked
Turcanuwhyhedoesnta endtheclasses.Turcanu
answeredthatheismarriedandhasotherthingstodo.
Caciucaskedhimagain,whatishispoliticalviewandifhe
stillmaintainsarelationshipwiththelegionnaires24,at
whichherepliedclearlythathedoesntwanttohaveany
moretodowiththelegionnairesandtheydontconcern
himanylonger.Whatyoudoisyourconcern,Iama
communist!Iama iendofEmilBodnarasbrothersand
theysupportmeandhelpmewithmydiplomacycareer.So
thisisthelasttimewhenIevertalkormeetwithyou.
CaciucdidntmentionthoughifTurcanutoldhimornot
thathealreadybeganhislegionaryactivityinsideC.S.L.Iasi.

24

A.k.a.Chris ans

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FromthesediscussionswithTurcanuthoughitcanbeseen
thathebecameacommunist(maybeevenbefore1944),due
tohisinvolvementwiththeBodnarasbrothers.Athing
remainsclear:atthetimeCaciuchadthediscussionwith
Turcanu,Turcanuheldthepromiseofapoliticalcareer.
CaciucgoesontosaythatTurcanutoldhimthatinthe
autumnof1948,whenhewasarrested,hehadalreadybeen
trainedbyAnnaPauker(aForeignMinisterthen),who
wantedtosendhimasanAmbassadorinYugoslavia.
TurcanusarrestwasduetoStefanCaciucsunforgivable
mistakes,whotalkedduringinterrogation,withoutbeing
coercedorevenasked,abouthispriordiscussionswith

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Turcanu,andforthisreasonTurcanuwasarrestedand
sentencedto7yearsinprison25.
CaciucsaidthathedenouncedTurcanubecauseheenvied
him,becausehehadaweaknessforthegirlTurcanuwas
marriedto.
Theeyewitnesseswhoweretherewhenthetwohadan
argumentaerTurcanustrialatSuceavarelatethatCaciuc
toldTurcanu7yearswillseemlikeadayandtobecontent
thathewasntsentencedto10.
ThatiswhyTurcanuappearedatSuceavaonlyinlate
autumn,whentheinterrogationswereatanend.

25

MaybethatshowTurcanumo vatedhisangertowardsthelegionaries

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OnceTurcanuwasarrested,thecommuniststhoughtthey
couldusehimasatoolagainstthelegionnairesinthe
horriblescenariosofPitestiandGherla.
Bogdanovicisspeaker26eventtookplacebeforeTurcanus
arrest.Andsoitseemsthatthecommunistdelegates om
Bucharest,whocoordinatedandveriedtheinterrogations
andstatementsinSuceavaprison,stumblinguponCaciucs
statementconcerningTurcanu,notiedtheparty.And,
followingthisnotication,thepartyorderedprefect
Bogdanovici omBucharesttohaveatalkwithhisson,for
theiroperationtobecarriedoutontwo onts.
One,conductedbyBogdanovicissonwhodespiteallthe
torturehewassubmi edtodidnttalkatall(hehadthe

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responsibilityofanentireUniversityonhisshoulders);in
thetimesoftheinterrogationsIwascon ontedwith
BogdanoviciaswellandIsawwithmyowneyesonhisface
andbodythesavagetortureshewassubmi edto.
ThesecondonewasTurcanuscrimes.
UsingBogdanovicijuniortheywantedtodestroytheyoung
legionnairesunit,studentsandhighschoolpupils,inthis
waytestingeverysoultoseewhostoodrmandwhowas
doubting,thedoubtingonesbeingrecruitedintotheinitial
phaseofthereeducationprocess,coordinated omthe
shadowbythepartyoceinSuceava.Bogdanoviciwasonly
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planintopractice,thatistodestroytheyounglegionnaire
unit,sowingdistrust,suspicionanddoubtamongthem.
Generallythisplandidwork;theyoung,beingnave,not
knowingthecommunistwayofthinking,believedinthe
communistslures,becomingvictimseasytomaneuver.
IdonotknowtheexactdatewhenBogdanoviciarrivedin
Pitesti;whatiscertainthoughisthatthishappenedbefore
December10th1949,thedateinwhich90%ofthe
legionnaireandnonlegionnairestudentsnationwidewere
broughttothePitestiprison.
WhenthereeducationatPitestistarted,Bogdanoviciwasnt
killedquickly,aswasthecasewithotherstudent
legionnaires,butaccordingwiththecommunisttorture
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practices,hewastortureduntilthewinterof1951(thesame
happenedwithPatrascanutoo).Theonewhodenounced
himwasPopaAlexandru(Tanu),hiscolleagueand iend
omSoroca.TurcanukeptBogdanovicialiveatNicolskis
andtheRussiansorders,becausetheywantedhimto
declareeverythingheknewabouttheactivitiesoftheyoung
legionnairesalongthecountry,aswellasthoseinBasarabia.
AerTurcanuwasarrestedduetoCaciucsstatement,the
complexplanelaboratedbyMoscowandtheoccultforthe
destructionoftheyounglegionnaireswasputinpracticeto
thesmallestdetailsbyTurcanu.Originally,heshouldhave
beensentencedto2,3years.Andstill,hewassentencedto7
yearsofcorrectionalprison;sentencedto7yearsinsteadof
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2forareason,becauseaccordingtotheirplanTurcanuhad
tobeusedallthoseyears.
IhavetomentionafewmorethingsconcerningTurcanu.In
1946,whenthatdiscussionwithCaciuctookplace,Turcanu
wasacommunist,hewaspartofthepoliticalbureauinIasi.
Somesuspectedthat,havingconnectionswiththeBodnaras
brothers,theyorderedhimtomaintainarelationshipwith
thelegionnairesalso,inordertokeepthemunderscrutiny
eyes.Anyway,Turcanuwasarrestedbecauseoftheterrible
mistakeCaciucmade.
Aerthelegionnaireswhohadlongsentencesle om
SuceavatoPitesti,theoneswhoremainedatSuceava
noticedthatTurcanuwasabsent omtheprisonforawhile.
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ThesuspicionwasthathehadbeentakentoBucharestor
evenMoscowwherehesignedtheplanwhichcontainedthe
futureselfdenouncementsatPitestiandGherla.
SoBogdanoviciwasnttherstculpritinthiscomplexstart.
Bogdanovici,whenthereeducationstarted,thoughthewas
playingagameofpoliticsathisfatherswishtosave
himselfandhiscomrades.Wecanclearlyseehedidnot
knowbolshevism,althoughhewasabasarabean.Heended
upbeingmurderedbyTurcanu,attheRussianagents
orders.
OnceTurcanuwasarrested,Bogdanovicisactionstook
anotherturn.Thecommunistsdidntsomuchneedre
education,astheyneededtogetoutoftheyoung
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legionnairestherestofinformation,whichtheydidnt
declareinthepriorinterrogationsand,evenmorethan
that,everythingconcerningthereactiontocommunism
omwithinthecountry.
Anotherpurposewasthedestructionofthisyoung
populationusingtorturesandthenusingitindiverse
schemes.AndTurcanu,justlikeothercommunists,didnt
fullygrasporknowtheshrewdnessofthissatanicplan.He
wasfullyconvincedthatifhewillbesuccessfulinhis
missionandifhewillfulllittothele er,thecommunists
willtakehimoutoftheprisonandwillgivehimaneven
be erplaceinsociety,be erthanhehadbeforeeven,

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probably,directlywithintheCentralCommi ee;thus,his
illusionofapoliticalascension.
Turcanudidntunderstandordidntwanttounderstand
thateveryevilcanonlyresultingreaterevils.Thatswhy,
aertheyusedhimhowtheypleased,hismasterswith
whomhehadbeenworkinguntilthen,suddenlyvanished,
leavinghiminthehandsofothermasterswhowould
transferhimandhiscollaborators omGherlatoJilava
prison.
There,isolatedeachoneinadierentcell,inorderto
preventthemtalkingwitheachother,theywereforcedto
writewhatmethodstheyused,forhowlongtheyhadto
tortureeachyoungmanuntilhisbreakingpoint,whatwas
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thebehaviorofthelegionssuperiorsandwhatmethods
theyappliedtotheoneswhodidnotbreak.Untilthetime
thesereportsweredone,in2yearsofwork,newmasters
cameinsteadoftheoldones.Oncethenewmasterswere
installed,thesemastersarrangedtheirtrials,usingtheir
ownstatements.Sowhentheywereexpectingtobereleased
omprison,decoratedandgivenhighrankingpositions
withintheparty,theirmasters,insteadofcongratulating
them, eeingthem,theypaidtheminfull,accusingthem
thattogetherwiththoseabroadtheywantedtocompromise
anddenigratetheparty.Butthebanditsdidntsucceedin
foolingtheparty,whichbecauseofitsvigilancediscovered
theplotinduetime,punishingthosewhobeartheguilt.
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ItwasthenrumoredthatTurcanushenchmenwantedto
lynchhim,buttheguardsintervenedtostopit.Itwasvery
wellstaged!Theywereisolatedandkeptinisolationuntil
thetrial,inthebiggestsecrecy;thensentencedtodeathand
executedbyresquad.
Somereaderswillaskthemselveshowdoweknowallthisif
wewerentthere.Theanswerissimple:asecretstaysa
secretaslongasitisknownbyonlyoneperson;whenit
becomesknownbytwopersons,itsnotasecretanymore.I
willcomebackwithdetailswhenwewilltalkaboutTurcanu
andhishenchmen,concerningthePitestiandGherla
prisons.

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Playingwithsatanisverydangerous,becausetheoneswho
servehim, omcollaboratorstheybecomevictims.Satan
doesnthaveanyscruples,nordoeshekeephisword,no
morals,nofeelings,butonlyoneveryoutlinedgoal:
transforminghiscollaboratorsinvictimsincreasinglyeasier
tomaneuverastimegoesby.
So,inordertotellwhotheauthorsofthereeducationwere
andhowthereeducationatSuceavastarted,Irstneedto
saythattheoneswhowillinglyaccepteditwerealsotheones
whoformedTurcanuschiefofstaatPitestiandGherla,
doingtheselfdenouncements.Thesameoneswhobelieved
thattheLegionaryMovementisabusinessinwhichthey
couldreachtheirupstartgoals.Ipersonallymetallthese
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peopleandIcametooneconclusion:theseyoungmen,
eithertheydidnothavethetimetocompletetheir
educationbecausethestatebannedthemcompletelyas
legionnaires,eithertheyweredishonest omtheverystart.
IfinsidetheChurchtherewereChristianswho
compromisedit,thinkingintheirinsolencethattheycould
cheatGod,thenwhybesurprisedifinalltheotherhuman
organizations,indierentoftheirnatureandgoals,there
weretraitors,deserters,cowardsandopportunists?Buta
nationdoesntexistandliveonthroughthefearful,
cowards,desertersandtraitors,butthroughitsmartyrs,
heroesandwarriors(VasileParvan),andahuman
organizationdoesntlivethroughthosewhoputthemselves
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insatansservice,butthroughallofthosehonestpeoplewho
areinitsranks.TheRomanianshaveasaying:Allthe
forestshavedrywoodinthem.Thesamecasewiththeso
calledlegionnairestheywereblindtoolswho,fortheir
ownselshinterests,enteredagamewhichprovedfatalto
them.
Istatedandamconvincedthat,evenbeforethearrests
plannedbythecommunistsbeganinMarch1948
everythingthathasoccurredinsidetheprisons,there
educationatSuceavaandtheselfdenouncementsatPitesti
andGherla,wereimposed,conducted,controlledbythe
Moscowoccultandtheinternationalone,stoppingat

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nothinginorderfortheLegionaryMovementtobewiped
outofthefaceoftheEarth.
TotheonesthatadheredtothePrisonerswithCommunist
ConvictionsOrganization(P.C.C.O.),theyhadpreferential
conditionsabowloflentilmore,taken omotherpeoples
mealtheypromisedthattheywillbereleased omprison
andthatthepartywillmakethemhighrankingactivists.
Thenaivety,thelackofjudgement,thechildishcredulity!
Herearesomenamesoflegionnaireswhowillfullyadhered
tothisorganizationandwhohadamajorroleintheself
denouncementsofPitestiandGherla.BesidesBogdanovici,
theauthorofthereeducationandtheonewhoinitiatedit
atSuceava(Turcanudidnotplayaparthere,thiswas
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provenatPitesti),therewerePopaAlexandrua.k.a.Tanu,
Martinus,Livinschi,Cantemir,VirgilBordeianuandafew
students omIasiandBucovina.Alltheseriousstudents
andpupilswithbigsentencesdidnttakepartinthiscircus
atSuceava.
Theideacameaboutamongthelegionnaireandnon
legionnairestudentsthatonlyTurcanuandBogdanovici
wereguiltybecausetheyacceptedtobetheleadersofthis
reeducationandtheselfdenouncements.Theydidnot
knowthoughforthecommunistsitdidntma er,their
plansdontrelyonpersons.No!Theplanhadtobefullled,
noma erthepersonused.

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So,allowme,aersomanyyearsofprisonandaerallwe
havewitnessedwithoureyesandearstostateinall
certaintythatBogdanoviciandTurcanuwerenttheones
whoinitiatedandfullledthisreeducationandtheself
denouncements.No,thefactwaswellknownthatinthe
communistregimesnotevenabirdcanythroughtheair
withoutthepartyknowingaboutit.Sotheplanonce
completed,itstoolscouldhavebeenanyone,notonly
BogdanoviciandTurcanu,butanyothername:Ionescu,
Popescu,Dunareanu,etc.Thepersonswhocouldcarryout
theplantofulllmentcouldbefoundoneverystreet.
Traitors,cowardsandopportunistsyoucanndanytime,
onanystreet.
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TheplanconceivedbyMoscowandtheinternationaloccult
concerningtheyounglegionnairesinRomaniasprisonswas
thought,completedandcarriedouteventothesmallest
detailbytheRussianagentsincollaborationwithAnna
Pauker,VasileLuca,TeohariGeorgescuandwiththechiefof
Security,generalNicolski,aidedbythecolonelZeller.
Judgingbythefacts,Irepeatthatallthatoccurredinside
theprisons,thereeducationatSuceavaandtheself
denouncementsatPitestiandGherlawasimposed,
conductedandcoordinatedbytheRussianagents.Andthe
communistleadershipinRomaniaagreedwiththis,being
foreigntoourkind.TeohariGeorgescu(aliasBurah
Tescovici),colonelZeller,colonelSepeanu,aswellasAna
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Pauker,VasileLucaandDejwithhiscollaborators.Someof
uswereconvincedthatNicolski,Russiasagent,hadbeen
workinginsecretwithRussianagents.Itispossible,because
thecommunistsplanned,thoughtandorganizedtheir
missionsverywellandthorough.
Infact,thecommunistssloganwas:Allweneedis
planning,thosewhoexecuteitwecanndplenty;allwe
needispeople,theirsentenceissure;be ertoarrest1000
innocents,thanoneguiltytoescape.

*
AttheendofMarch1949,arumorwascirculatingthrough
theSuceavaprisonthatwewillbetransferredtoanother
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prisonandwewillbedividedintocategoriesdependingon
theprofessionaltrainingwithnoregardtoourpolitical
aliation.Ifanyoneofuswouldhaveknownhowthesecret
plansweremadeincommunism,theywouldhaveknown
whythecommunistsdividedusintotheseprofessional
categories.
Hereisthelistoftheprisonswiththeirprofessional
repartitioneach:
Aiud,thebiggestprisoninthecountryintellectuals;
Gherla,rstclassprisonworkersandpeasants;
Pitesti,secondclassprisonstudents;
Targsor,avillagewestofPloiestipupilsinsecondary
schools;
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Mislea,atownnearPloiestiwomen;
Jilavatransitprison,reservedforspecialandsecret
purposes;
Suceava,Galati,RamnicuSarat,Dej,Sighet,etc.well
denedpurposes,attheSecuritysdisposal.
Auniquepenitentiarywasthebarracksinthecityof
Fagaras,transformedintoaprisonforexocersandex
policemen.
Thisrepartitionlasteduntil1955,whentheprisonsstarted
toltertheinmatesinpoliticalcategories.
On15thofApril1949Iwastransferred omtheSuceava
prisontotheoneinPitesti,alongwiththerstlotof80
legionnaires.
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PITESTI (1)
InthesecondhalfofApril1949,alotformedof80high
rankinglegionnairestudents,eachofussentencedto10
yearsormore,weretransferred omSuceavatoPitestibya
train.TheSuceavaprisondidnthaveenoughchainsfor
everyonesotheyusedonechainper3inmates,tiedtoour
hands.Atthetraintheyuntiedus.
ItwasbeautifuloutsidewhenwearrivedatPitesti.Backthenthe
prisondidnthavevansforprisonertransport.Thewardenwas
expectingusatthetrainstationinPitestiwithsome30armed
policeguards.Becauseofthelackofchainstheyarrangedus6
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by6,dependingonourheight,andtiedourhandswithrope.
Beingsecuredbyarmedpoliceguards,youcouldntrun.
Iwillneverforgetthiscourse,becausethePitestitrainstationwas
inthecenterofitstownand omthestationtotheprisonwere
like67km27.
Aerwelethetrainstationandgottothehighwaythatleadsto
CurteadeArges28,ourcolumnwasaswideastheentirehighway,
andthecarshadtostopandmakeroomforustopass.The
passersbyandthoseincarslookedatusstunned.Theycouldsee
wewerentsoldiers,neitherordinarycivilians,butapparitions,
whiteaslime,shearedanddressedwithallkindsofclothes,with
ourheadslookingdownandyokedlikeoxenontheeld.We

27
28

havingtowalkonfoot
CourtofArges

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wereclumsilymovingforwardonthestreetpavedwithriverbed
gravelandbehindussomuchdustwasliingintotheairthat
theonesbehindusdidnotseeeachotheranymore.Thepeople
didntunderstandwhathappenedtous,becausewewereall
youngandaboutthesameages.Butseeingtheguardswho
escortedustheyrealizedweareprisoners.Irememberold
womendressedintraditionalArgesclothing,crossingthemselves
andshoutingaloud:Oh,God!Whathappenedwiththese
youngmen?Iwasseeingwomencry.
Inthismannerwewerewelcomedbythepopulationofthecityof
Pitesti,we,therstlotoflegionnairestudentsbrought om
Suceava.Notoneamongthe80studentswhocametoPitesti,
agreedonreeducationwhileatSuceava.Mostofushadbeen
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sentencedtomanyyearsofforcedlaborandonly10ofustohard
labor.
Afewwordsaboutthehistoryofthis
prison.
ThePitestiprisoncanbefound
laterally,tothewest,atadistanceofalmost200meters omthe
highwaywhichtiesPitestitoCourtofArges.Thewallwhich
surroundstheprisonis5meterstall.Theprisoncanbefound
whereTheRiveroftheLadyowsintoTheRiveroftheFair,
bothoftheminturnowingintotheRiverArges.Thesceneryis
beautifullyenchanting.Here,theplainsofArgescontinueinto
thesubcarpathianhills,whichareculturedwith uittrees.

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TheprisonwasbuiltbytheorderofArmandCalinescu,the
devilsservant,hebearingthesignofnaturealso,havingonly
oneeye.Inthisprison,ArmandCalinescu,onthetimewhenhe
wasaprimeminister,plannedtoexterminatethelegionnaire
youths.Hedidnotgettoseethisfullled,butsatancarriedhis
plantofulllment,honoringhiswish.Thespiritofevilreigned
inthoseplaceswheretherewerethepurestandyoungest
membersoftheLegion,fortheyhadtobesunkdownintothe
swampofdesperation.Regardingtheprison,ithadbeenbuiltin
theshapeofaT.Theroomsweredividedintocellswiththesize
of4/2mandroomsthesizeof10/6m.OnthetailoftheTthe
upperoorshad2rowsofcellsconnectedbythickpostwire29,
andin ontofeachcelllaya1metercorridor.Ontheground

29

Likeanet

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oorandbasementtherewererooms10/6meterswide.Thehead
oftheTwascomprisedof2rowsofcellswithnonetbetween
them,aconcretecorridor,whereallcouldbedoneinthegreatest
secrecy.Thesecellsweremadeespeciallyfortheisolationofthe
legionnaireyouthssuperiors.Onthe1stoor,ontherightsideof
theTtherewasabigroom,dubbedthe4thhospitalroom,
becauserightnexttothisroomtherewasacellwhichfunctioned
asamedicaloce.The4thhospitalroomcouldaccommodate
almost50inmatesonitsoverlappedbeds.
Inthebasementhowever,intheheadoftheT,therewerethe
kitchen,thelaundryroom,thebathroomandseverepunishment
cells.Therewasatoiletateachendofarowofcells,andatthe

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joiningoftheTwithitshead,ateachoor,therewasa
punishmentcelldubbedtheblackcell.
Theprisonhad2staircasesthattheinmateswereallowedtouse
oneatthejointingoftheTwithitshead,andtheotherone
inthetailoftheT,forgoingoutintothecourtyard.Themain
doorwasatthe1stoor.Onthemainstaircaseprisonerswerent
allowed.Duetotheprisonsarchitecturethesecuritywas100
percentecientandthesecretwasbeingkeptasecret.You
couldntescape omthere.Ontheexteriorwallwhichwas5
meterstalltherewasasoldierarmedwithamachinegunanda
oodlight,ateach50meters,inapotpeg.So,escape omthis
fortresswasimpossible.IneedtomentionthatArmand
Calinescuwas omArgesandhisestatewasnotfar omthe
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prison.Maybethisisthewayhewaskeepingtheyoung
legionnairesunderhisdemonicwings.
Aerthejourney omthetrainstationtotheprisonandallthat
occurredontheway,herewearein ontoftheprison,alltiedup
likebovinesreadytobeslaughtered.In ontoftheprisonthere
wasaplateauwhichwedidntrstseebecauseyoucouldntseeit
omthestreet.Here,theguardsallowedustositdownonthe
grassand,toourjoy,althoughwewereweakenedandtired,we
couldtalkwitheachother.Ithadbeenthelasttimeforsomeof
uswhenwegottodothatthough.BeingheartbrokenIask
myselfevenaersomuchtimehaspassed,howmanyofus
enteredandhowmanygotoutalive,andinwhatstatemostof
all?!Howmanyofall80wentmad,howmanykilled,howmany
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collapsedandhowmanywereusedasinstrumentsoftorture
againsttheothers?!
Aertheregistryclerkcheckedourles,weweredistributedby
4sineachcellontheforcedlaborandhardlaborsection.

CELL 18
Thiscell,likethe59,15and121beforeit,leundyingmarksin
mymindandheart.
Ifthosecellsandcell18 omPitestiwouldnthavebeenwhat
theywere,mythinkingandknowledgewouldnthavebeenlike
theyarenoweither.ThenIaskmyself,weretheybadorgoodfor
me,thesecells?Clearly,theyweregood,afavorwhichGod
bestowedonme,toshowmethewaywhichleadstoHim.
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Incell18IwasdistributedalongwithmycomradeIosubMihai.
Thisword,comrade,whenusedinprison,forcommunistsit
meantlegionnaireactivity.Thiswordcostmanylives,brought
severearrests,trials,sentencesandspo ing,withtheuseof
informers,thosewhodidntrelinquishtheirbeliefinthe
LegionnaireMovement.
WhenIwalkedin,Ifound2youngmen omBucharest,bothof
themnotaliatedtopolitics:PetrovanuMironandNegrescu
Fag30.Thesetwoweresentencedto25and18yearsofprison
respectively,becausein1948,beforeanationalcongressofpupils
inRomania,hostedattheMihaitheBravehighschoolin

30

English:Beech,Fagus,aspecieofTrees

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Bucharest,theysetthefestivitiesroomonre.Theauthorhad
beenPetrovanuMiron.
Thethingthatcaughtmyeye omthestart,inthisprison,was
thetidinessinthecells,keptsotidywiththehelpofthepolitical
prisoners,andonthecorridors,bythegenpopinmates.
Inthecellstherewereoverlappedbunkbeds,andtheoorwas
madeoftimber.Theroomsoorsweremadeofconcrete.The
ma ressesofthebedsdidnthavesheetsonthem,norpillows,
butonlyausedblanketwhichweusedtocoverourselveswith.In
themorningandtheeveningweweretaken omourcellsin
ordertoemptyourchamberpotsandatthesametimellour
drinkingwaterpotwithwater.Wewashedduringmornings
insidethecellwithoutanysoap.
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Whatsurprisedus omthestart,wasthatwhenweleourcells
toemptyourchamberpotsinthetoilet,thedoorsoftheother
cellsinthesectionwereopenandthedeadboltsonthempulled
opentoo,andweleourcellsunescorted.Furthermore,many
timestheguardonoursectionpretendedhehadotherthingsto
doandtoldus:Bwah!(boy)Iamyourdaddy,Igiveyoufood,I
giveyouwater,IamresponsibleforyouandIamopeningyour
cellnow.Yougotothetoiletorderly,Ihaveotherthingstodo.
Thiskindnesshadaverywelldeterminedpurposewhichwe
laterdiscoveredduringtheselfdenouncementsthatbeingto
giveusanopportunitytomeetwithstudents omallthe
facultiesandgettoknoweachother,exchangeinformation
aboutactivitiesaswellastohavecertainagreementsortake
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decisionswithinourMovementwhichwilllatergivethemthe
reasontotortureusyearsinarowinordertomakeusdeclare
them.This eedomlastedonlyuntilAutumn.Lookingback
nowIrealizethiswasabigmistakewhichcostthelivesofmany.
Hownaveandinnocentwewereaboutbolshevism,ofits
methodsandgoals!Andhowperverse,hypocriticaland
treacherousaresatanandhisfollowers!
Whenwe,the1stgroupofstudents omSuceavaarrivedherein
Pitesti,mostofthestudents omBucharestwerealreadyhere.
Ourcomrades omBucharestandtheotherUniversities
countrywide,theoneswithforcedlaborsentences,were
incarceratedatthe2ndand3rdoors,andthosewithhardlabor

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onthe1stoor.Theones omBucharestmadeagood
impression;theywerecalledthearistocrats.
IntheprisonIfoundthestudentssentencedonAntonescustime
whohadalreadyspent8yearsthere.Wewereseeingthemas
saintsIwillgiveafewnames:Gafencu,Dragodan(The
Magistrate),Ianolide,Costandache,Dinescuetc.Theyinformed
usaboutthelifeintheprisonandthewaytheguardsandthe
prisonsadministrationexpectustobehave.
Anessentialtraitofthesecomradeswastheirpeacefula itude,
orderanddisciplinetoavoidarguingwiththeprisons
administration.Theexamplewasstartedbynoneotherthan
ValeriuGafencu,whoimpressedallwithhiswayoflife,a itude
andexample.Heshallremaininthememoryofthepolitical
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prisonersinRomaniaand,especially,inthememoryofthose
prisonerswhoweresickoftuberculosisintheTarguOcna
PenitentiarySanatoriumasasaint.Eventhemostbi erforgot
whotheywerewhenfacetofacewithGafencu.
*
ItwastheendofApril,whentheEasterHolidayswere
approaching.And,forthersttime,wewerege ingreadyto
celebrateEasterinjail.Thecomradesarrestedinthetimeof
AntonescuhadbeenmemorizingabigchunkofRaduGyr
poems.Westartedmemorizingthemalso.
Thenanextraordinarythinghappened,whichprovedoncemore
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other,determinedtomakenocompromisesintheirghtagainst
communism.
OneortwodayspriortoEasteracomrade omBucharestwhose
nameIwillkeepsecretbecauseIwanttobediscreet,receiveda
packagewithfood.WewerentallowedtogetanythingforEaster.
Icannotrememberhowmuchthatpackweighed,butitdidnot
surpass10kilograms.Inthispackwereplacedwithcarewafers
withanaphorawhichareeatenonEasteroccasions.Allthe
studentsate omthispack,legionnairesandnonlegionaries,
withoutdiscrimination, omforcedlabortohardlabor.Notone
waslewithout.Thequantitywassmall,symbolic,butthemoral
eectofthisgestureimpressedusallverymuchandthishelped
usfacethecomingdrama.Inorderforthereadertohaveaclear
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pictureaboutthewaythispackagewassharedamongthe
prisoners,Iwilltellhimthataredeggwassplitin24pieces,each
smallpartservedalongwithasmallpieceofredshellalso,asa
symbolofthisGreatHoliday.
Thisunforgo engesturemarkedforamomentthelove,unity
andfellowshipofthoselockedawayinPitesti.
TheeventswhichtookplaceonEasteroccasionintheyear1949
inthePitestiprison,mademeseriouslythinkandnally
understandwhatitmeanttohaveagoodheart,asBadiaGhita
Thebarbersaidlongtimeagoincell121atSuceava.Thisthing
botheredmeformonthsinarow.DuringthenightsIcouldnt
sleep,divingdeepdowninsidemysoultryingtounderstand
whatthatmeanstohaveagoodheart,especiallyinthose
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circumstances.Iunderstoodonlylaterwhathemeant:tohavea
goodheartmeansthepresenceofGodinyourheart.Inorderfor
mantofeelGodspresence,hemustrstcleanhisheart,
accordingtowhatJesussaid:Blessedarethosepureinheart,
fortheywillseeGod.So,thegoodheartcanbea ainedwherever
manndshimselfontheearthdependingonhim.Inprison
conditions,wherethetemptationsareweakerbutthetortures
almostunbearable,theheartcaneasilybepuriedofallthe
thingsthatcouldpreventandoendGodspresenceinit.
Inconclusion,Iunderstoodthegoodhearttobethepresenceof
Godinapureheart,andImadetherststeptowardsapure
heartincell18inPitesti,whereIfoundthekeywhichhelped
melockthedoortotheworld omwhereIwascoming om,and
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openthedooroftheworldIwasenteringin.So,atrstIpuried
theworldIcome om:ifIrememberedthenicethingsIlived,
myheartached,becauseIcouldnthavethosethingsanylonger;
ifIrememberedtheuglythingsIvedone,Ireproachedmyselffor
doingthem.So,inbothcasesIsuered.(Folkshaveasaying:
Diedofheartache!,meaning omlossofhope.)
Dontgetmewrong:IwasntreallyleavingtheworldthatIwas
livinginbeforeallthis,butonlylockingthedoortoit,soI
couldntrememberthosethingsthatusedtomakemyday
before,whenIwasa eeman.Because,ifIwouldhave
maintainedtherelationshipwiththatworld,thesueringfor
losingitwouldhavebeenthedeathofme,oritwouldhavemade
meevenmorebi er.Withthiskey,Iopenedthedoortothe
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nextworld,theworldofamandeprivedofallthosethingshele
behindhim.Themainthingwastounderstandthisnewworld
andacceptingitasitis.
Theclimateincell18wasnice,asfarisitcouldget;thetwoyoung
men omBucharestwereveryimpressedbywhathappenedat
Easter.
ThatmonthIwroteanotherle erhome,only5lineslong,andI
gotonebackthesame.
Thele erswithmorethan5lineswerenevergiventothe
prisoners,theyweretorntoshreds.Aertheirreading,wewere
orderedtosurrenderthemtotheguard.Also,duringthismonth
wewereeachallowedtogetapackageofclothes,3kilograms

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max.ItwasalsothelasttimewhenIspoketomynextofkin,in
allthe15yearsIvespentinprisons.
*
Iwonderisthereanyotherplaceinthisworldbesidethe
communistworld,whereapoliticalprisonerisonlyallowedto
speaktohisnextofkinoncein15years,throughapostcardthat
readsonly5lines?
ThatswhyIneedtosaythisonemoretime,forotherstoknow
thetruthaboutwhatwentoninsidetheprisonsofRomania:in
15yearsofdetention,inallthetimeIwaslockedawayalongwith
theotherpoliticalprisoners,IwrotehomeonceandIwas
answeredonce.Igotoneortwopackagesaswell,butthisonly
between1948and1949.In15yearsIdidnotgetonebookor
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newspaper.Thosewhoagreedtobepartofthereeducation
thingatSuceavain1948and1949gotonlyafewcommunist
doctrinewritings.
IneenyearsIdidnthaveonepieceofpapertowriteonorone
pentowritewith.Thosewhogotcaughtwithevenacrayonmine
orpaperwerepunishedincruelways;somewereevenkilled
becauseofthis.SoeverythingIvelearned,receivedorsent
duringthe15yearstimewasdoneonlywiththehelpofmymind.
Ididnotknowhowmynextofkinweredoing,andtheydidnt
knowathingaboutmefor14yearsat.Ididntgetonepill
duringthose15yearstimeofdetention.Thesmokersdidntget
onecigare e.Asfarasthefoodisconcerned,ascaloricvalueit
ranged om600and1000calories,andasnutritionalvalueit
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wasextraordinarilyweak,coming omthewastedisposalin
groceries.
Whocouldevenbelieve,inthe eeworld,allthesethings?No
one,butGodandwe,theoneswholivedthroughthisordeal.
Whooftheintellectualsinthis eeworldcouldbelieveand
comprehendthatwriters,poets,scientists,philosophersand
othercategoriesofintellectualscomposedtheirworksthere,only
intheirminds,writingthemonlyintheirmemory?
WhocouldbelievethatalltheballadsandpoemsofRaduGyr,
NichiforCrainicandothers,numberingdozensofverseseach,
werewri enonlywiththepencilsoftheirmindsandtheir
memory?

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Thereaderwhoisofgoodfaithinsidethe eeworld,inorderto
beconvincedthatwhatIsayistrue,lethimgointhecommunist
Romania,whereexpoliticalprisonersstillliveandwhocan
testifytothesefactsasbeingtrue.
Meetinganillustriouscollegeprofessor,aerIwasreleased om
prison,heaskedmeinwhatkindofconditionsIspentmy15
yearsofpunishment.BecauseIknewhimsince1937,Itoldhim
whatItoldyouabove.AerIlaiditdowntohim,theillustrious
professorputhishandtohistempleandthen,verysurprised,in
ordernottooendme,heexclaimed:
Idontunderstandandcannotacceptthat,intheeraweare
livingin.TohisstatementIreplied:

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Yes,professorsir,butyouforgetweliveincommunism,and
ifItellyoualltheordealsandtorturesthelegionnaireswere
subjectedtoforyears,whatwouldyoureplythen?
Nothing,hereplied,andpleaseforgiveme,becausethisis
outofmyleague.
See,professorsir,ifyou,aculturedmanandascientist,
omthetopofthepyramid,dontunderstandthesethings,
thenhowcanthemanonthestreet,thecommonman
understand?Ortheforeignpeoplewhodidnotlivein
communism?So,youagreewithmethatcertainthings,if
youdidntexperienceyourself,youcanneverunderstand?
Andthen,howdidyousurviveintheseconditions?
ThefaithinGodandthehopeinHismercyandhelp!
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Hearingmyanswer,theprofessorshutupanddidntsay
howmuchorhowli lehebelievedinGod.Hewasamong
thefewcollegeprofessorswhodidntbecomeaparty
member.Hewasalsotheonlyonewhowasforcedtotakehis
PHDtwice.TherstPHDhetookbeforethebolshevism
cametopowerinourcountryinhisyoungyearshewasa
verygood iendofGheorgheCuzaandthesecondPHD,
duringthecommunistregime.
Itoldhimgoodbye,withthecertaintythathehadbeen
livingincommunismandhelearnednothing omit.
*
SometimeinJune1949,thetwoyoungmen omBucharestwere
takentoanothercell,andintheirsteadtwoothercomradeswere
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brought:CostacheOprisan,thesuperioroftheBrotherhoodof
theCross31inallthecountryandAlexandruMunteanu,the
superiorofthelegionnairestudents omtheTheologicalFaculty
inSibiu.
Thistime,Iwasamongmyownandcoulddiscussanything.
OprisanwasaseniorintheLegion.Before1940,inthetimes
oftheLegionaryGovernment,heusedtohavean
administrativefunction,andaerAntonescuscoupdetat
inJanuary1941hewastakeninGermanywherehewas
commi edtotheBuchenwaldexterminationcamp.Backin
thecountryin1945,hereceivedthefunctionofchiefofthe
F.D.C.inallthecountry.

31

TheyweretheLegionoftheArchangelMichaelsyoungmembers

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BesidesthefactthatOprisanwasoneofthechiefswitha
bigresponsibility,hisintelligenceseatedhiminthetopof
theRomanianintellectualpyramid.Withhisphilosophical
expertiseandhispoetgenialityhewasmakingabig
impressiononthosearoundhim.Hewasthesonofa
rze32,borninTecuci.HesignedupattheFacultyof
LiteratureandPhilosophyinCluj,whereheamazedhis
professors.Duetohisvastknowledge,accumulatedduring
hisstayinGermany,veryoenhislecturesreplacedthe
onesofhisprofessor,ofcoursewiththeprofessorsadmiring
indulgence.InthetimeIstoodnearhim,Ihadthemost
elevatedintellectualpreoccupations.Athisageof30years

32

(IntheMiddleAges,Moldavia)Freepeasant,organizedincommuni es;owneroflandinthevillagehewasborn
in;heworkedtheagriculturallotwhichwasassignedtohimasafreeman(alongwithhisfamily);freepeasant,
ownerofland;hasitsrootsintheHungarianwordrszes

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old,Oprisanwasenvied.He,likePascal,wasafearsome
brilliantmathematicianandlogician.Iaskedhimtoteach
usaboutthehistoryofphilosophysothetimedidnotpass
invain.Hislectureswerenotmadeexcathedra,33but om
soultosoulandsopleasantanda ractivethat,8hoursa
day,itwaslikeIcouldforgetthehungerandtheoutside
world.
Those11monthswhileIsatwithOprisaninthecell,werefor
methemostpleasantmonthsIeverspentinprison.
Iwasa achedtoOprisanbecause,duetoagross
denouncement,whichIwillexposeinthefollowinglines,I
fellintothehellofthePitestiselfdenouncements34.Ilater

from the seat of authority; with authority: used especially of those pronouncements of the
pope that are considered infallible.
34
Communisttorturesthatweremeanttoexposethesubjectasbeingtheonewhoexploitedthe
workingclassandtreatedherlikeaservant
33

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heardthathewasmadeintoamartyr,somewherein
secretattheJilavaprison.
Oprisan,whowasaphilosopher,wasalsoapoet.Partofhis
poemswerememorizedandtakenoutoftheprison.Hereis
oneofthesepoemssaved omextinction,thankstothe
memoryofthesurvivors.

Don Quijote

O,Lord!DonQuijotewasmurmuring
Andhishandgoesdown,alongwithhislance,shivering,
O,myonlylove,changedintoarobot!
Hislancesinkingitstipintothemud.

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Thepuremisteryoflife,castintodeadiron!
Thisisthereasontheytookyouaway omyouroldcastle
Tochangetheineableuidintoresort
Andtheethericbody,inmonsterofsteel.

ThesadDonQuijotelowers omhishorse.
UnitedwithyouIshallforeverstay,
YourcelestialloveinmetalIshallseek,
Forevergivemetherstkiss.

Theringofdestinyismovingslowly,inthesky,
Andthesignofsuering,thedelicatepiscesriseout,
InhissleepSanchocriesonhisbreastplate
And,numbedbyhisthoughts,thestoicaldonkeyrests.

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Oh!Mindcorruptedbyvanity!
Descartes,theIlluminism35,itscheapmakeovers.
Todayyoulltryagaintoscratchmywound
Squeezingthesamedoubtsintomysoul.

Yourvainlighttemptedme omyoungage,
Itspalevainglorytryingtokillmygenius,
AndIwatchedinsidemysoul,underyourdeadclearness
Howoneaeranother,yourmiraclesended.

Butmyheartknows,thatthistallwall,
Itsstraightlinesgoingupintothesky,
Underitssinistersilence,underbasalticblocks,
Underitssimplegeometry,ithidesamystery.

35

The ideas and principles of various groups of Illuminati

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Forthisreasonthedestinywishesme,bypassingthesegates,
Underrockyclearnesstofeelitsevilgenius.
Itsfallenlighttoraiseback omthedead,
Payingformysinwithmyowneshandblood.

*
StartingAugust1949,averyharshdietwasimposed.Theplan
whichthecommunistshadforus,thelegionnairestudentsthere,
startedtobeputinapplicationthroughsystematicstarvation,
weakeningourphysicalstrengthstothelimitofdeath.
InOctoberwebarelycouldmovearoundthecellanymore.
Inallthistime,themajorityoflegionnairestudentsinthe
countryhadbeenbroughttoPitesti.Andwhentheprison
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waslled,theselectionandcellrepartitionaccordingtoa
priorplanningstarted.
So,thepreparationfortheexposuresstartedwithatrocious
starvation.Thesoupwastransparentandthequarterofa
loafofbreadwasreducedtohalf.Theydidntcometotake
ustogetsomeairortothebathroom,andtherelative
eedomwhichhadbeenimplementedwithavery
deliberatepurpose,wassuppressed.So,thegoingoutsideat
thetoiletstoemptyourchamberpotswhichallowedusto
meetothercomradeswassuddenlysuppressed.Theguards
onoursectionwerereplacedaswellwithother,newlyhired
guards.

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Theterrorofstarvationbecamesoacutethatitrequireda
supernaturaleorttostopyourself omscreaming.Itis
worthnotingatthispointthatontheforcedlaborandhard
laborsectionsthehungerwasenduredwithstoicism36.
On26thofOctober1949,onSaintDumitrusDay,myname
anniversary,theguardnewlyarrivedonoursectionopens
thecelldoorandreadsmynameoftheeverpresentlist.
Hearingmyname,IaskedtheguardifIhavetopackmy
stuornot.Heinvitedmejusttocomeoutandleadmeto
thecorridorbetweentheheadandtailoftheT,wherea
Securityocerwasexpectingme.Iwasthenleaddownonto
themainstaircase,wheretheprisonersdidnthavean

Conduct conforming to the precepts of the Stoics, as repression of emotion and


indifference to pleasure or pain.
36

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accessto,andleadtotheadministrationbuildingwhichwas
foundatadistanceofsome50meters omtheprison.The
administrationandprisonwerentconnectedatall,
remainingseparateforkeepingabe ersecrecy.Ihadbeen
toitbefore,onetimeonly,immediatelyaerarriving om
Suceava,whentheytookourngerprints,measuredour
bodiesandrecordedourdistinctivesignsinorderforour
personalidentityletobecreated.
Theylemewaitingafewminutesinthehallway,thenthe
sameocerleadmeintoacorridorwhere,judgingbythe
positionsofthedoorsIcouldtellthosewerethe
interrogationoces.AsIcameintotheoceIsawacivilian
whowasseatednotonthechairatthedesk,butrightonthe
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desk,Americanstyle.Hisphysiognomyandthecolorofhis
faceandhairleadmetobelieveheisatypicalRussian,but
thatwasmyrstimpressionand,asthepoetsays:yourear
islyingtoyouandyoureyedeceivesyou.Themomenthe
startedspeakinghehadmetotallyconfused.Hewas
speakingperfectRomanian,inthemannerofacultivated
man omBucharest.AndIthoughthewasaRussian om
BasarabiaHehadblueeyes,amoderateforehead,athick
nose,moderateheightandanathleticconstitution.So,
judging omhislooksheseemedtobeRussianandbythe
wayhespokepureRomanian.
Therstwordheaddressedtomewas:Oh,whatacurled
moustacheyougotthereoldman,youlookjustlikeStefan
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theGreat.Indeed,thatwasareasonableremark:my
comradestoldmethatIdidlookliketheMoldavianKing.
Hetheninvitedmetotakeaseatonthechair,nearthe
barredwindow.Hethenstartedtoaskmeafewquestions:
ifIwenttoRussiaasasoldierandifIwasdecorated.I
answeredyes,seeingthatheknowsmylewell.
ThenheaskedmehowcomeIenduredtheinterrogation
andwhydidtheygivemesuchalongsentence,towhichI
repliedonlywithashrug.Heoeredmeacigare ewhichI
refused,beinganonsmoker.Onthedesktherewasasmall
basketwithnutsinit,whichheopenedwithapenknife;he
tookothecore,cleaneditandateit.Hedidthisallthe
timewhileIspokewithhim.Heoeredtometoo,butI
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refusedhim.AthisremarkthatIdontwanttoeat om
communistsandIrefusehimagainlikeIrefusedhis
cigare e,Iansweredthatistrue.
Asaconsequence,theclimateintheroomandhis
vocabularywerechangedonthespot.
Aerafewothertrivialquestions:whoaremycellmates,
howdoIfeel,howisthefood,heaskedmewhatisOprisans
roleamongthelegionnaires,andIreplythathemustknow
be erthanme.Hechangedhistone:He!He!Youare
sharingthecellwithbigranks,Moustache.Andtothe
question:Whatareyoutalkingaboutinthecell,
Moustache?,Irepliedthatwearetalkingaboutwomen.
Youlegionnairestalkaboutwomentoo?
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Yes,sometimes.
Youdontdiscussotherthingsaswell?
Ohyes!Ourmemories omcollege.
Ah!Iforgotyouarestudents!
HeaskedmeifIknewhowmanystudentswereinsidethe
prison;IrepliedthatIcannotknowandIamnottheprison
wardentoknowsuchthings.ButonthesectionthatIwas
on?hecontinued.Thesamenegativeanswerfollowed,
muchtohissomewhatretainedanger.
Buttheguard,didntheletyoumeetatthetoilet?
Ididntreplytothisquestionanymore.Icouldtellthathe
knewwhatwasgoingoninsideoursection.Mysupposition

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wastrue.Theyallowedustomeetatthetoiletforareason:
itwaspartoftheirscheme.
HethenasksmeifIwrotehome,andIsaidyes,thenhe
insidiouslysaidthatthiswasafavor omthem.Ireplied:
Theywerentfavors,investigatorsir!
Iamnotaninvestigator!
Hisreplymademethink.Judgingbythewayheasked
questionsandwasstudyingmyfaceIwasconvincedthathe
isaversedcopandthatheknowsthepsychologyofthe
relationshipbetweentheinvestigatorandtheonebeing
questioned.Thevocabularyandthewellthoughtoutand
balancedquestionswerebetrayinghimhewasntjustany
policeman.Ibelievethathewasoneofthebigshandhe
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alsoknewabouttheselfdenouncementoperationtooand
hispresenceatPitestiwasntrandom.Thismancouldhave
beenNicolski.ItcouldnthavebeenZellerbecauseIknew
Zellerlater,inPitesti.
Whenhenallyrealizedthiswasgoingnowhere,hestarted
ontingme:
Listentome,youbandit!(Icanhearhimevennow)You
thinkyoucanfoolme,answeringmeinthisway?Dontyou
knowwhereyouarerightnow?DoyouevenknowwhoI
am?Iheardthis omallthecommunistswhowantedto
lookintimidatingandimportant.IrepliedthatIdonot
knowanddonotcarewhoheis,whichenragedhimalot.

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Listenyoubandit!IknowyouverywellandIknowwhatyou
arethinkinginsideyourbanditminds!
Ididntanswer.Iknewthatheknewourlegionnaire
doctrineandourwayoflifeandhowourrelationshipswere
like.Inshort,theyknewusbutwedidntknowthem.But
aerhesaidthatheknewusIstartedpayingmore
a entiontohisquestionsandtomyanswers,beingmore
hesitativetogiveanswers.Bymentioningsomeerrorsour
peopledidinthepasthewantedtoprovokemeandget
things omme,makemetalk.
Seeingthatheisnotge inganyanswers omme,he
changedhistone:

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Youare80percentofthisprisonyoubanditsandseekto
convertothersaswell,luringthemtoyourlegionnaire
camp.
Igaveastraightnoanswer.
Howso?Hereplies.WhataboutPetrovanuandNegrescu?
IonlytalkedaboutChristianthingswiththem,becauseI
amaChristian.
Hearingthis,heasksme:
Youareastudentatmedicine,howcanyoubelieveinthe
thingsyoucannotsee?
Therearesomanythingswhichyoucannotseebutstill
theyexist.Ourmindsforinstance,ourthoughts,whichyou
cannotseeandstill,youseektoknowthem.
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Iwillindeedknowyourverythoughts,hereplies.
IaskthereadertokeephisstatementinmindbecauseIwill
comebacklatertotalkaboutit.Anothercluethat
somethingwasbeingpreparedforus.
Itoldhimthatfaithcanbefoundtherewherethe
instrumentsofphysicscannottakeus.
Hechangedthesubject.
HeaskedmeifIwasalegionnaireanymoreandIreplied
withanotherquestion:
IsntthisthereasonIwassentenced?DontyouknowwhyI
wassentenced?
Maybeyouwontbeanymore,heemphasized.
Thatcannotbe,Ianswered.Thenhequicklyreplied:
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Wellliveandsee.
Againthismademeconcludethatsomethingindeedwasin
storeforus,somethingwhichneededtohappen.
Thedialoguecontinued:
Maybeyouwontwanttobealegionnaireanylonger!
HowcanInotbeanylongerwhenIalreadyam?
Dontbesorash,yourtimemaycome!
So,Iknewforsurethatsomethingwasabouttotakeplace.
Whenhesaidmaybeyouwonttobelegionnaireany
longermademethinkofthereeducationbackinSuceava,
whichwehadbeenforcedtoundergo.However,this
dialoguewasntrelatedtothethingswhichheneededtoget
outofme.
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Willyoubeabletosurvive15yearsinprison?Because,he
added,thefooddietyouareonrightnowwontallowyouto
nishallthesentence.
Thereweresaintswholived40yearsinthedesert,withonly
abiscuitandacupofwateradayandtheysurvived.Onthe
contrary,theirbodiesandmindswereveryhealthy,the
proofbeingtheirwritings.Thisishowwelldoittoo.
Thesaintslivedinthedesert,butyouareinourhands.
Seeingthatthedialoguewasgoingnowherehedirectly
jumpedatme.
Listenbandits!Lookatme,evenifyouaremadeof
reinforcedconcretewewillstillsoenyou.

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Itwascleartomenow.Icanhearitsoundinginmyears
eventodayandIwontforgetaslongasIhaveabrainle.
Wedhavetoendurecoercionandviolencecoming omthe
deepest,mostdiabolichatred.Idontknowifhesaidit
intentionallyoritslippedhiminordertomakemebelieve
ourdestinywasintheirhands.
Thereisnometalwhichcanwithstandbeyonditsmelting
temperature,headded.
Asaconclusionhesaid:
Iwillshaveyourmoustache!
Ifitwillbebanned,Iwillshaveitmyself!
Wehavemethodstomakeyouintowhateverwewantto
makeyou!
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Concerningthebody,yes,butthesoulisuntouchable.
Butwe,atheists,cangettoit,becauseithangsonyour
bodies!
Ithangsinourbodiesbutiseternal!
Youthink!
Thedialogueendedwiththefollowingarmation:
Listentomebandit,concerningourpromiseswewillkeep
ourword.
Abitirritated,Iansweredwithanoensivetone:
Whatareyoutryingtosay?
Youwillsee!Youcanbemadeofreinforcedconcreteand
wellstillgettoyou

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Thisthreatmarkedtheendofdialogue.Ilewithoutsaying
goodday.
Iletheinterrogationoce(asimplecell)andwalked
slowly,withoutescort,totheprisondoor.
*
Itisworthnotingthosethreatswerentrandom,infacttheywere
theessenceofthecommunistplanconcerningtheextermination
oftheLegionnaireMovement.
Knowingthesethreatsagreatquestionarisesinourminds.
IaskedOprisantoanalyzethesethreatsandtellusifhe
couldseewhatwascomingforus.Onthattimewedidnt
knowMakarenko37spedagogyofthebatandwedidnt

37
13thMarch1988-1stApril1939;AntonSemionoviciMakarenkowasbornintheUkraine,Biopilia
village,inafamilyofworkers.Evenfromthe meofRussiasCivilWarhewasdedicatedto
rehabilita ngabandonedanddelinquentchildren.Hefoundedthe1stworkcolonywhichhenamed
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knowthesethreatsreferredtothemethodthecommunists
willuseonusinordertokillus,andnotnecessarilyforceus
tosurrender.Howcouldweknowthatthemostbarbaric
violencewillbeusedagainstusandthatonlyTurcanuand5
morepeoplewilluseitatrst,inagreementwiththeprison
administration.
TheMakarenkomethodsplanwasentrustedonlyto
Turcanu,becauseonlyTurcanufeltpositivehecouldapply
Makarenkostorturemethoddowntothesmallestdetail.
Theoneswhointurnreceivedthisplan omtheRussian

theGorkicolony,inwhichheins tutedmilitarydiscipline,pu nganaccentonthegroupopinion,


thuscrushingthepersonalityoftheintellectuals.Hispurposewasthecrea onofthenewman,ofa
goodsovietci zen.HisthinkingwasbasedonMarxandLeninsideas.Hismostpublishedandwell
knownbookswere:ThepedagogicalpoemandFlagsontowerswhichinspiredmoviestoo.Healso
setthedura onoftheturningoftheoldmanintothenew,inatexten tled:15yearsforthe
formingofthenewman.Toreachthisgoal,insidetheGorkicolonythechildrenandyoungmenwere
trainedinphysicalexercises,paramilitarytraining,militarygames,paradesunderthebanner,etc.In
Makarenkosopinion,onlythecollec veistheperfectpedagogicalsolu onforthetransformingofthe
individual.ThesinisterRomanianCeomewasbasedonthisidea.ThetorturersinRomaniasprisons
wereinspiredbyhisideasaswell.Turcanuandthemembersofthere-educa oncommi eeallread
Makarenkosworksinordertoextractthemethodsandthegeneralideafromthem
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advisorsandcarriedittofulllmentwere:generalNicolski,
colonelZeller(whoIgottoknowpersonally)andTurcanu.
ThelasttwomentionedendedlikeIpreviouslysaid;Nicolski
wastheonlyonelealive.Ociallythough,thecommunists
onlyusedtheplanonce:on10thofDecember1949,aer
which,Turcanuwasletoapplytheirmethodsandcarryon
theirplantofullmentliketheblindtoolhewas.
AerItoldmycellmatesaboutthedialogueIhadwiththe
interrogator,Oprisantoldustothink.Tobeonthelookout,
butremaincalm.
Soofallmycomradesonthesameforcedlaborsectionat
the2ndoorIwastheonlyoneletobotherwithwhatmy
interrogatorsaid.ProbablybecauseIwassharingthecell
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withOprisan.Severaldayslater,thankstoFloricathe
guard,wecouldspreadthewordtoallthecomradesonour
sectionaboutwhatwentonwiththeinterrogator.Idont
knowiftherewereothercomradestakenlikemetothe
interrogatorschamberbutwarhadalreadybeendeclared:
Evenifyouhadbeenmade omreinforcedconcretewewill
stillsoenyoudown.
Oprisantoldus:Dearcomradesand iends,youknow
wellalreadythatourleaderCorneliuCodreanustartedthe
ghtagainstcommunism.Becauseofthis,thoseofuswho
followhimandareengagedinhisstrugglemustbe
preparednotphysicallybecausewecouldntdothatbut
spirituallyforitisthetoughestghtforusyet.Icannot
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clearlyseethemethodtheyaregoingtouseonusbutI
believeitwillbethemethodofviolence,seekingtodestroy
inusthefaith,unity,loveandfellowship.
Oprisan,likeus,didntsuspectthoughthatintheviolence
theyweregoingtoinictonustheywilluseourown
brothers,usedasblindinstrumentsbytheoneswho
concoctedtheplan.
AerthatinterrogationIfeltlikethetravelerwhoseesthe
comingofastormatthehorizon,terried,waitingforitto
come,whileneverknowingitspower.
Aerwards,whenallthesectionfoundoutaboutthe
interrogatorswords,manyofusaskedwhatshouldtheydo.
Oprisantoldthem:Bepreparedforthestruggleinthe
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swampofdesperation.Eachofuswillbealone,aidedonly
byGodsMercyandthegoodinhim.Thestrugglewilllast
long,youwillfalldownandberaisedupagain,butyou
mustbestrongandpatient,convincedthatthisghtisthe
rightght.Soallthatremainsforusistosharpenour
spiritualswords:oflove,unityandfellowship.
*
StartofDecember1949.Theguardonoursectionpassesin ont
ofeachcell,tellingustocleanthembecauseweweregoingtobe
inspectedbypeopleinBucharest omtheMinistryofInternal
AairsandAdministrations.Indeed,aer2days,beforelunch
time,theguardFloricatoldusthattheinspectionwasalreadyon
thecorridoranditwasmakingitswaytowardus.
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Notlongaertheguardwarnedus,theyappearedinour
section:twodeputyministersofTeohariGeorgescu.
Prisonruleswerethateachtimethecellwasopenedor
closed,morningandevening,theoneoncelldutyhadtosit
nearthedoorinuprightpositionandreportjustlikeinthe
army.Ijusthappenedtobeincelldutythatday.
Whenthedooropened,wardenDumitrescuappeared
togetherwiththedeputyministersJianuandDulgheru.I
startedtoreport:Sirministersir,thecellno.18numbering
4prisoners,atyourcommand,sir.BecauseIwaswearinga
moustache,theministerdidntevenlistentomyreport,but
insteadheaskedthewardenwhoallowedtheprisonersto
wearamoustache.Thewarden,excusinghimselfthatno
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oneeverinstructedhimconcerningthisma er,orderedall
moustachestobeshavedstartingtomorrow.
Iknewtheconversationwascarriedoutloudforusthecell
matestohear.Indeed,welookedlikecorpses,andthecell
wallunderthewindowwasallmoldy.Theweatherwascold
andwewereorderedtowashthetimberoor3timesaweek.
Becauseofthecoldnearthewindowandwatervapors om
theoorthemoldstartedtoappear,thecelllookinglikea
moldytomb.
Thedayof10thofDecemberwascomingnear,whichthe
studentsintheoldRomaniacelebrated.Thetwodeputy
minstersvisitwasntrandom.

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PITESTI (2)
th

10 of December 1949
The self-denouncements start in Pitesti

Therumorhaditthatbeforetheselfdenouncementsstarted,
oneortwodaysprior,onthe10thofDecember,TurcanuEugen,
PopaAlexandrua.k.a.Tanu,Martinus,Cantemirandother
threewhosenamesIdidntndout,weretakenoutoftheprison
toawarbleronthesideofArgesriver.Theretheyweretoldthat
theyaretheteamwhowillshootallthelegionnairesuperiorsin
Pitestiprison.Whenaskediftheyagreetodothis,allofthem
answeredtheyarereadytodothisdeed.

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Theywerethenbroughttotheplacewheretheexecutionneeded
tohappen,gunsandbulletsweredistributedtothemeachand
theysatandwaitedforthevictimstobebrought.Theoneswho
directedthishoaxalreadyknewthatTurcanuandhisteamwere
readytofollowanyordergiventothem.Thersttesthadbeen
passed;allthatremainedwasthetooltobeginexecutingthe
plan.
Before10thofDecember,insidethe4thhospitalroom(whichI
mentionedearlier)30studentswerebroughtwhowere omthe
topofthepyramidmostlylegionnaires.Turcanuandhisteam
wereinsidethatroomaswell:PopaTanu,Martinus,Livinschi,
Leonida,Prisacaru,Cantemir,VirgilBordeianuandafewpupils
omCampulungMoldovenesc.Turcanuandhisgroupdidnot
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saytheywerereeducatedalreadybutonthecontrarytheywere
sayingbadthingsaboutBogdanoviciandthosewhoacceptedre
educationbackatSuceava.Turcanuandhisteamweredoingthis
becausetheywantedtoseewhatthestudentswerethinking,
saying,whatsidetheywereoneach.Turcanuprovokedascandal
betweenhisteamandthe30students,mostlylegionnaires.A
windowwasbrokenduringthisghtandthatwasthesignalfor
theadministrationtointervene.Afewknocksinthedoorand
thewardenDumitrescualongwithlieutenantMarinaandsome
30guardsenteredtheroom.Thewardenandpoliticalocer
Marinaredtheirpistolsintotheceilingandtheguardswith
clubs,oxvalvesandmilitarybeltsbeatthestudentstoapulp.

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Youdidntknowiftheywerealiveordeadanymore.Asifthis
wasntenough,theunreeducatedstudentswerethentakenout
intothehallandTurcanusgroupstartedbeatingthemso
terriblythatthecorridoroorsbecamepuddlesofblood.Then
thesestudents,chosen omtheelitelegionnaires,weretakento
thedeathcellsintheheadoftheTandtorturedbyTurcanu
overanyearinthemosthorrendousandcruelways.
Afewnamesofmartyrs:PopCornel,MagirescuEugen,Popescu
Aristotel,PavaloaiaConstantin,PatrascanuNuti,Caziuc,Voinea
Octavian,SoltuzLaurentiu,Juberian,ParizianuGheorghe,
StrachinariuConstantin,DanLucinescu.Thisiswhythese
comradesbrokedown,exceptingParizianu.Itsnotrighttojudge
them:whenyoureaccusingsomeoneyoube erknowhowitis
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inhis/hershoesrst.Youhavetowonderifyoucouldhave
resistedtothosetorturesyourselfbeforejudgingsomeone.From
thisdateforward,wardenDumitrescuandMarinathelieutenant
becameabsent omthescene;Turcanuwasinchargeofthe
prisonnow.Hehadsparekeysofalltheroomsandcellsofthe
prison.Isawhimdozensoftimeswiththebundleofkeysinhis
hand,authoritarianandfearsome,evenpu ingascareonthe
guards.
ThePitestidenouncementtortureslasted om10thofDecember
1949toSeptember1951.Theseyoungmenwhowereisolated,God
onlyknowswhattormentstheyhaveendured,withnopossibility
toevenkillthemselves.

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Starting om10thofDecember1949,theadministrationand
guardsinPitestiprisonvanished omthescene.Theonlyactor
lewasTurcanu.Helockedandunlocked,heorderedtheguards.
Heandhismasters,generalNicolskiandcolonelZeller.Nothing
movedwithoutthemknowing.Duringthenightof10thof
December1949manyofusontheothersectionsheardsounds
andcouldntunderstandwhattheywere.
AttheendofDecembermyfacultycolleagueLunguleacIonand
GrigorasIonwerebroughtincell18.
IdidnotknowthatLunguleacIonwillfullyagreedtotakepartin
thereeducationatSuceava.ButbecauseIknewhewassuering
omGravesBasedowdiseaseIsuspectedhewascapableof
anything.Mysuspicionsprovedtobetrue.
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Lunguleacdidntbearanyguiltthough.Becauseofhisincurable
diseasehewouldhavedonejustanythingforatinofbarley.
WhenheenteredthecellIsuspectedhewassenttospyon
Oprisan.IimmediatelytoldOprisanandSanduMunteanuto
stoptalkingabouttheLegionnaireMovement.Iosub,the iend
ofLunguleac,letLunguleacsharethebedwithhim.Iosubwas
theonlyonewhotalkedwithhim.Lunguleactriedtoget
informationoutofhim.
TheChristmasof1949,asopposedtothe1948one,wassadand
corruptedbyLunguleacspresence.IntheChristmasnightthey
sangcarolscomposedbyRaduGyronthemelodyofOh,What
aWonderfulnewscarol.Thiscarolwassoheartbreakingthatit
madeyoucry.
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TheNewYearsEveof1950Ispentwithfear;satansspirit,wasall
overthePitestiprisonmaintainingtheclimateofterror.
AttheendofJanuary,Lunguleacwastakenafewtimesoutofhis
cellwithoutsayingwherehewasgoing.FromthatmomentI
realizedheisarat.Thismadeitimpossibleforhimtoliveamong
us.Noonetalkedwithhimanymore,notevenIosubwhowashis
iend.Lunguleacwasntanevilmanbuthisdiseasemadehim
veryvulnerable.Inevermetanotherpoliticalprisonerlikehim,
whowassotormentedbyhunger;hewasincapableof
withstandinghunger.Hewasgoingmadbecauseofhunger.
AtthehalfofJanuary,Lunguleacwastakenoutofthecellfor
good.Aerhelewewererelievedandcalmandharmonywere
reinstated.
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Weweresoweak,especiallyOprisan.Whenhekepthis
philosophyhistorylecturesIwasamazedhestillhadtheenergy
tomoveanymore.
Besidesthehungertherewasthecoldalso.Onlyintheevening
weweregivenabitofwarmth.
Between26thofOctober1949March1950therewasatotallack
ofinformation.Icametothisconclusionaersomeofour
comradesinthesameprisonsectionweredisappearingwithouta
traceandIwasntevensuspectingwheretheywerebeingtaken
to.
InMarchOprisannallynishedthehistorylesson.Hespoke
aboutNaeIonescuandtheRomanianphilosophicalschooland

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promisedhewilllectureusaboutthephilosophyofcultureas
well.

Denouncement. Ground floor room no. 2

InPitestiandGherlatheydidntreallydoreeducation,which
ociallywasntdonewiththebatandinthemostcruelways,but
inpeacefulmeansusingwordsandpersuasionandreasonable
arguments.Infactthecommunistswereneverinterestedand
neversoughttoreeducatetheiradversaries.Theyonlywantedto
compromisethem.Theywerenttheadeptsofreeducation
simplybecausetheirideologyisbasedonterror,hateandlies.

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Thedenouncementshadthepurposeofcontinuingthe
interrogations,notbyusingtheilliteratestheyrsthiredin
Securityin1949,butusingtheprisonersthemselves38.SoNicolski
usinghissubordinateTurcanuandhishenchmentorturedyou
inthemosthorricwaysinorderforyoutotellthemeverything
youknewaboutyourselfandothers,beingconvincedthatvery
li lewassaidduringpriorocialinterrogations.
Theyfocusedtheirenergymostlyontheyounglegionnaires.
They,thelegionnaireswereforeseenintheirplan,andnotother
youths,whoweredisorganized.Theotheryouthswhowere
arrestedrepresentedindividualcases.Thecommunistsknewwell

38

Whohadbeenstudents

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theorganizationandactivityofthelegionnaireyouthamongthe
studentsandpupils.
Whatotherorganizationofyoungpeoplecouldcompareitself
withthelegionnaires?Noothersopposedcommunismlikethese
youngbravemen,beingtorturedtodeathforit,killing
themselvessotheycouldkeeptheirsouls,sueringuntilthelast
breath.
Iaskmr.Ieruncaifheknowshowmanylegionnaireskilled
themselves,woundupdead,wentinsane.Iknow,butheonly
writes omhearsay.
Thelegionnaireyouthwasthereasonfortheself
denouncements.Somewerentslappedoncebuttheytold

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everythingtoTurcanuandPopaTanu,takingtheirside.We
knowthemall.
Stalinscommunists,theinternationaloccult,andthenational
occultknewustoowellandtheydidnotlikeourideasatall.
Thatswhytheywantedtodestroyus.TheLegionnaireMovement
hasitsrootsinChristianteachingsaboutworldandlifeandas
longastheChristianChurchwillbeonthisearththe
LegionnaireMovementwillbealso.TheLegionnaireMovement
wantedtobringChristianideasinpoliticsbecausethebasisof
thehumanrelationshipsislove,honor,unityandharmony.
TheLegionnaireMovementwantedtocreateanewtypeof
ChristianmanlikeMota39whoinallhismanifestationsand

39
AquotefromMota:"Oursoul,s ll edtoanotherworld,wanderstodayinalifewhichisnotours.
Whenwefacetheworldoftoday,wefeelalien,wefindnosenseinitotherthanthepossibilityof
harnessingittorevivethedaysofoldandtoincreasetheirbeauty-theirbeautyandtheright
Romanianorder."
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actionsdoesonlywhatispleasingToGod.TheLegionnaire
MovementwasbornFromJesus.IlovedJesusandwalkedgladly
todeathforHim,Motaconfessedathismartyrdom.
TheLegionnaireMovementisabouttheloveforyourpeopleand
nation.Thisdoesntmeanyouhateothernations.InThe
LegionnaireMovementnationsarethefoundationonwhich
humancommunitiesrest.
Godcreatednationsassocialentities.Ifthiswouldntbethecase,
Hewouldnthavechosenanationinwhichtocomeintheesh;
wehumansweremadeinHisimage;thatswhywemustlove
Him,keepHisCommandments,doHiswillandthatwhichis
pleasantToHim,loveoneanother,liveinpeace,harmony,

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understandingandhelponeanother.Whatismorepleasingto
Godthanthelove,harmonyandpeaceamongbrothers?
Nothingandnoonecouldeverconvincemethatthe
denouncementswouldhaveexistedwithouttheexistenceofthe
legionnairesintheprisons.Theyknewthatthisverywell
organizedanddisciplinedMovementwastheirstrongestenemy,
TheLegionnaireMovement.
Communistswantedatthesametimetomakeusrenounceour
faithinGodandourChristianconceptaboutworldandlife.Itis
worthnotingthatthemajorityofthepeoplewhowerenot
legionnairesandImetinprisonwereeitheratheistseither
indierenttowardsfaith.

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TheyalsowantedtoerasethemythabouttheCaptainandthe
Legion omthelegionnaireyouthshearts,thenmakethemsay
in ontofalltheothersthattheyarenotlegionnairesanymore,
insultingtheCaptain,thesuperiorsandLegioninthemostvile
ways,thusdiscreditingyouin ontoftheothersregardingyour
politicalideas.Theyalsosoweddistrustanddeceitamongthe
legionnaires.Alsotheymadeyoudistrustyourselfandyour
moralandintellectualcapabilities.
Thentheywantedtoerasethemythofthelegionnaireghting
spirit omyourconscience;destructionofpersonalityregarding
anythingmanhadgoodinhim;usingtheyounglegionnairesas
informersinprisonsandoutsideofprisons;changingtheyoung

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legionnairewiththehelpoftorturesomuchastomakehim
becometorturerinsteadoftortured.
Thiswasthecommunistsplanwhichwasputinpracticeinthose
selfdenouncementsatPitestiandGherla.
Justthinkaboutthis:Canaman,ahumancommunityora
familyexistwithoutmutualtrustinoneanother?
Thecommunistsactednotonlyuponthebodybutusingthe
bodyscapacitytofeelpainuponthesoulandconscienceofthe
man.ForthisreasonIwasandamrmlyconvincedthatthe
dramaatPitestiandGherlawasunique.
AerIamnishedtellingthereaderthethingsIvebeen
through,seenandheardbymeandmycomrades,Iwilltryas

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muchasIcan,totellyouwhichoftheseabovementioned
objectiveswereaccomplishedbythecommunists.
Themethodusedindenouncementsasfarasphysicaltorture
isconcerned,wasinspiredbyMakarenkosPedagogicalpoem
aBolshevikcriminaleducatorwhichtheyhadbeen
experimentingintheU.S.S.R.onthegeneralpopulationinmates;
thisdiabolicalmethodoftorturewasplannedbythesatanic
mindsofMoscowandinternationaloccult.Theessenceofthis
methodwas:beating,longlastingtorturewhichcontinued
indenitelyatthehighestintensitypossible.Thetorturedwasnt
allowedtoknowwhenthistorturewillend.Malrauxinhis
writingssaidthatnoonecanlastindenitelytotorturewithout
knowingwhenthattorturewillendorifitwillend.
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*
AtthehalfofMarch1950severaldaysbeforeweweretaken
omcell18andtransferredtogroundoorroom2our
comradeIosubMihai,whohadthesoulpureasavirgins,had
beenhavingsometerriblenightmaresafewnightsinarow
whichworriedus.
Hehadbeendreamingaboutyounglegionnaireskillingone
another,blood,reproaches,youngpeoplerunning omeach
otherand,whatwasevenmoreterrifyingwasthatwethoseinthe
cell18werepartofthisterribledrama;especiallyhim,Iosub
Mihai,IandmycomradeOprisan.Severaldaysinarow,inthe
morning,hewouldtellushehasthesamehunchasgrimas

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beforehismotherdied,inIasi.Hewascertainthatsomething
extraordinarywilltakeplacewithhimandhiscomrades.
Histerriblepredictionsduetothepurityofhissoulwillcome
topassinthesmallestdetail,asthepredictionsofhismother
beforehim,whichshemadeoneortwodaysbeforeshepassed
away,whenshetoldhissisters:Mydears,yousaidMihaiwill
becomeadoctor,hewillnotbecomeadoctorthough.Indeed,
MihaiIosubneverbecameadoctor,becausehewaskilledin
Pitesti.
Idontremembertheexactdaywhenweweretakenoutofour
cellsbecauseofthetortureswhichwereyettofollowsoonaer.
Onemorning,theguardFloricaopenedthecelldoorandhaving
alistinhishand,inamuedvoiceheknewsomethinghe
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readthefollowingnames:OprisanConstantin,Bordeianu
DumitruandIosubMihai.Packyourstubecauseyouare
beingtakenelsewhere!IdidntunderstandthenwhyFloricawas
sosad,asifweweregoingtoourfunerals.Wepackedour
belongingsandcrying,wehuggedtheothertworemainingin
thecell,SanduMunteanuandIonGrigoras.WhileIwaspacking
mybelongings,Ifeltasifaknifepiercedthroughmyheartanda
stateoffearengulfedme,atypeoffearIhadntexperienced
before.Wecrossedourselvesandlethecell.Iturnedmyheadto
lookatIosubwhowaswalkingbehindme,andIsawterroronhis
face.
WeweretakentothestaircaseinthetailoftheT,whichthey
hadbeenusingtotakeusintotheprisonyard,andwewere
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stoppedin ontoftheroomno.2onthegroundoor.Evennow
whenIamwritingthisandIremember,aterroroverwhelmsme
asifIwouldstillbethereenteringthatroom.
Fromthereyoucouldseethroughthewirenetupuntilthe3rd
oor.Icouldnthearanysoundormovements.
AsIstoodnearthedoor,theguardonthatsectioncametotake
usintohiscustody,relievingFlorica.Notaerlong,Ion
Munteanu,graduateofMedicalUniversityinIasi,bornin
OravitaandComsaIeronim,astudentofthesamefaculty,born
inSinaia,werebroughtaswell;ComsaIeronimhadfunctioned
intheMoldaviasF.D.C.40.Bothhadbeengivenlongsentences.

40

TheChris anDemocratForum

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Wehuggedeachother,askingoneanotherwhywehadbeen
broughtthere.
Iknewthisroomwasbigandthosesentencedlongyearsto
forcedlaborwerentcommi edtorooms,butonlytocells.The
roomswereonlyoccupiedbythosewithshortandcorrectional
sentences.Then,aguardcamewiththekey,lookedonalistand
identiedusallbeforeinvitingustoenter.
IrememberitwasonaSaturdayandIrememberedthat
Saturdaywasalsothedaywhentheselfdenouncementsbegan.
Eventoday,whenIrememberthis,afeelingofdreadchillsmy
bodyasifIwaslivinginthefearofdeath.
AsIenteredtheroom,Iimmediatelysawknownfaces,andone
ofthemwhowereexpectingus,whoserealpurposeinsidethe
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roomwedndoutinafewhours,tolduswithasugaryvoice:
Haveaseatonthecementinthecorner,nearthewindow,and
takeyourbelongingswithyouthereuntilwebringtheblankets.
IonMunteanuitwasthenwhenIknewhimforthersttime
butIdidhearmanywonderfulthingsabouthim;hisprominent
featureswerehisintelligenceandrightnesstakentotheextreme.
Hemadethemistakeofaskingtheonewhoaddressedus:Are
youthebossinthisroom?andthatonerepliedpositively.The
manwhoaddresseduswhenweenteredtheroomwasnoneother
thanPriscaru,PopaAlexandruscolleagueattheAgricultural
FacultyinIasi,oneofthosewhowillfullyadheredtothere
educationplanbackinSuceava,partofthesquadofsixtrained

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fortheexecutionoftheyounglegionnairesandpartofthosewho
werethetorturersinthe4thhospitalroom.
AmongthoseintheroomIsawVirgilBordeianuandCantemir.
ThesetwoIknewsincebackwhenIwas ee.Ialsorecognized
somefacesofpupils omCampulung.Someofthepupils om
CampulungandSuceavaadheredtothereeducationinthis
la ercity41and,insteadofbeingtakentoTargsor,theywere
broughtheretoPitesti omJilava.
ThepupilsbroughttoPitestialongwithTurcanu,whomImetin
theroomno.2ongroundoorhadtoassistandinitiateself
denouncementsandthen,atthebeginningofSpring,someof
themwouldbesenttoTargsoramongthepupilsthere,to

41

Pites

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continuetheselfdenouncements42theystartedhereinPitesti,
Targsorbeingaprisononlyforpupils.
Heresanotherargumentwhichshowsthattheplanfortheself
denouncementswasmadeevenbeforeourarrests.Whydidthey
bringpupilstoPitesti,whenthisprisonwasdestinedonlyforthe
students?Ofcourse,itwasbecausethesepupilshadtopasstheir
initiationsastorturersandbecomeskilledintheself
denouncementstechniquesrst.DuringthetimeIwastortured
intheroomno.2ongroundoor,onthissectiontherewerealso3
otherrooms1,3and4wheretheselfdenouncementtook
place,and4otherroomsatthebasement.Intheserooms,aer
10thofDecember1949,studentsandpupilsweretrainedas

42

Reeduca on

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torturerstobetakenandperformselfdenouncementsat
Targsor,Gherla,TarguOcna,OcneleMariandCanal.
Thesedatesarecertainwithoutadoubt,veriedinAiudand
especiallyinthecampatthePoartaAlba43bysomeofour
comradeswhohadsentencesupto10years.In1958,whenthe2nd
bigwaveofarrestscametopass,ontheoccasionofsoviettroops
leavingthecountryandtheagriculturalcollectivizationentering
itsnalstage,thesecomradesofoursandtheoneswhohadbeen
partoftheselfdenouncementsinPitesti,Gherla,Targsor,
Canal,werecommi edtothecampatPoartaAlba, omThe
DanubeDelta.

43

English:TheWhiteGate

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AsIwassi inginthecornerontheroomonmyluggage,
OprisaninvitedmenearhimandaskedmewhisperingifIknow
someoneinthisroom.Iansweredyesandgavehimnamesas
well.Heaskedmethenifanyoneofthosewhowillinglyaccepted
thereeducationatSuceavawerepresent.Ipointedatthethree
whoweresi ingonthebednearthewallandwhoweretalking
witheachother;Igavehimtheirnamesalso.ThenOprisan
whisperedtome:Mydear,somethingterribleisgoingonhere.
Lookatthefacesoftheseyoungmen.Itookagoodlookattheir
faces:Indeed,Oprisanwasright.Inthatmomentthefear
engulfedme.
AermytalkwithOprisan,VirgilBordeianu(acoincidenceof
names;wewerentrelated,butwewere omthesamecityandwe
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kneweachotherinIasi)ina iendlymanner,asbackthenwhen
wewere ee,approachedme.HeaskedmehowIwasdoing,ifI
amhealthyandwhatmythinkingislike.ItoldhimIamhealthy
andmythinkingisasheknewbefore.Inoticedthatalthoughhe
shookmyhand,hedidnthugmetoo,asheusedto.
AtthesametimeIosubMihaiwalkedtothebeds,andtohis
surprise,hesawGiogaParizianu(theherowhowasputinside
theoveninSuceava)si ingonalowerbed,wrappedinawet
sheet.Allyoucouldseewashisswollenandbruisedhead.When
Iosubaskedhimhowhewasdoing,Gioga,barelyopeninghis
mouth,toldhim:Mihai,getoutofhere.
Iosubreturnedtomeandwhileshivering,hetoldmehowGioga,
Strachinaruandothercomrades,about12crippledmen,were
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wrappedinwetsheetsinthesamestateasGiogawas.Iosub
continued,saying:Brother,whatisgoingonhere?Again,Ihave
aterriblehunch.
Munteanu,hearingourconversation,gotup omhisplaceand
wentamongthebedstoseeifheknowssomeone omCluj.He
metafew,buttheydidnttalktohim.Returningtohisplace,he
addressedmeandOprisan:Whatisthisroom?Theairhere
terriesthelivinggutsoutofme!
Comsa,whoworkedintheF.D.C.,wentalsoamongthebedsand
recognizedmanypupils omthehighschoolsinCampulung,
SuceavaandRadauti,withwhomhehadbeenworkingforthe
Legion.Thesepupilsmethimwithhospitality,astheirsuperior,
andaskedhimallkindsofquestions.Butwhenhesaw
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StrachinaruandLates,hisformeraidsattheF.D.C.,wrappedin
wetsheets,heabstained omansweringtheirquestionsand
quicklyreturnedtoourgroupnearthewindow.
Facingthisspectacleandthisclimatewhichreignedinsidethe
roomyoucouldnttellwhatsgoingon.Butyoucouldseethe
comingofanastystorm.
Inoticedthatwe,the5newlyarrivedinsidethisroom,hadbeen
seatedinaplacewherenoonecouldseeusstanding.Butwe
knewthatallthosepresentintheroomhadbeeninformedabout
us.
Thedeadboltispulledwithabignoiseandtwogenpopinmates
dropthefoodpotatthedoor.Thentheguardordersforsomeone
tocomeandgetthecornbiscuit,somekindofbiscuitmade om
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cornour,whichissoakedinwaterandbakedinsidetheoven.
Theonewhowasorderedtobringthecornbiscuit omthe
corridor,andshareditamongus5,chosethesmallestpiecethere
wasinordertogiveitforustoeat.
Tooursurprise,thefoodpot,whichusuallyhadtoremainatthe
celldooroutside,wasintroducedintotheroomwhereoneofthe
prisonerssharedthefoodinsteadoftheguard.Inoticedthat
Prisacaruassistedtothesharingofthemeal,addressingthose
insidetheroomwithauthority:Comeintheorderdetermined
byme!Andtous:You5,youwillgetyourportionsaer
everyoneintheroomhasnishedeating.Waitnearthedoor!
Wegotupandwentnearthedoorsi inginarow.Therstin
therowwasIonMunteanuwho,inhisusualrightness,seeing
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thattosomethemoreconsistentfoodwasserved( omthe
bo omofthepot)andtotheothersthelessconsistentfood(only
theclearwater omthetopofthepot),toldtheonewhowas
servingthemealthathedoesntdoitcorrectly.Prisacaru,who
observedthescene,answeredMunteanu:Itdoesntconcern
you.Munteanu,whowasacommonsensedyoungman,replied
:Pleasebedecentandcivilized,towhichPrisacarubrutally
responds:YoullseehowcivilizedIaminafewmoments!
Wedidnthaveanybedding,thecementwasbare,andwewere
seatedonourluggage44.Whenweate,wefeltastrangeunseen
presencecirclinginsidetheroom.

44

theirclotheswerewrappedinalinen, edtobothends

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AlmosthalfanhourpassedsinceweateandPrisacaru,
CantemirandVirgilBordeianucametoourcornerandwitha
martialtoneapostrophizedus:You!Areyoulegionnaires
anymore?Weallansweredtogether:Yes!Wearelegionnaires,
whatcanwebe,thisiswhywehavebeensentenced!
Munteanugotuponhisfeetandtoldthem:Butyou,arentyou
legionnairesanymore?Isntthisthereasonyouhavebeen
arrestedandsentenced,becauseyouarelegionnaires?Tothis,
thethreeanswered:Wearentlegionnairesanymore,you
bandits!MunteanuthentellsPrisacaru:Iamnotagenpop
inmate,butapoliticalprisoner,legionnaire.Andifyouarenta
legionnaireanymorethenreportthistothewardenandheshall
releaseyou omprison.
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Youbandit,Prisacarureplies,theregimewillreleaseus om
prison,butyouwilldiehere,inprison!Munteanureplies:You
dontknowthis,ifIwilldieinprison.
Prisacaruwasthevictimofalieandwasexecuted,althoughhe
hadasmallsentence,butMunteanuwasreleased omprison
andlived.
Eversincewewalkedintotheroomuntilthethreeapproached
ourcorner,Oprisan,withhispensivenatureandalwaysretained,
didntsayaword.Prisacaruaddressedusoncemore,askingusif
wearelegionnaires,inthesamevocabularyofcourse,like oma
mastertoaslave.Aerwardshegavethesignaltoa acktothose
alreadypreparedbyhimtheywerelike30andyelled:Get
them!
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FromthatmomentuntilthedaybreakIbecameunconscious.
The30hitussobadwiththeirboots,clubs,sts,thatinthe
morningtherewerepuddlesofbloodinourcorneronthe
cement.Ineverwasunconsciousforsolong,noteveninthe
horrendoustorturesinSuceavabefore,thewheelandthebed
omthetimeoftheinterrogations.IdidntknowthenandIstill
dontknowhowmuchthose30bullieshitus.IrememberI
wantedtopeebutIcouldntgetup.Icrawledtothechamberpot
butthenIrealizedIcouldntmove.Therewasntonepartofmy
bodywhichdidntburnorhurt.Icrawledbacktomyplaceagain
andbecauseIdidntseewell,myfacebeingallswollen,Icouldnt
tellwhathappenedwithmyothercomrades.

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Ionlyrememberitwaslightoutsideandthesunlightwas
protrudinginsidetheroom.IopenedmyeyesandwhenIsawthe
statemy iendswerein,Ibecameterried.Notoneofthem
lookedhumananymore.Onlyswollenheads,blackenedfaces
andeyeswhichyoucouldbarelysee,vanishinginsidetheireye
sockets.Onthecementoor,onlyblood;ourclotheswereall
bloodyalso.Myunderpantsandshirtwerestucktomybody
becauseofthewoundsandthatmademescreambecauseof
pain.
Itriedtomakeaneortandpullmyselftogetherinorderto
analyzewhathadjusthappened,butthatwasimpossible.Ionly
rememberthatwhenthemealwasservednoneofuscouldget
up.Evenifwedidgetupwecouldnteat.Prisacaru,inhiscruelty,
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orderedtheonewhoservedthemeals:Todaythesebandits
dontgetathingtoeat.
Aeralltheothersateandweliedontheoorlikesomedead
bodies,likeinadreamIheardPrisacarugivinghissignalagain:
Getthem!
Andagainthe30stormedusandIfainted.Iwokeupwhenone
ofthemkickedmeinmyribswithhisboot,saying:Holdthe
tin,bandit!Istretchedmyhandstotakethemesstinbutmy
bothhandsfailedmeandIdroppedit,spillingitscontentson
theoor.AgainIfeltfeetkickingmyribsandheardavoice
yelling:Thebanditrefusestoeat!IansweredthatIdontrefuse
it,itsjustIcannotholdthemesstin.

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Icannotrememberifduringthataernoontheybeatusagain.I
believethatthethree,seeingthestatewewerein,werea aidwe
willpassaway.
Thecementbeingcold,didmegood,stillingtheburningIhad
allovermybody.Therewasntanyplaceonmybodythat
wouldnthurt.Thecoagulatedbloodgluedtomyshirtand
underpantswouldburstopenatmysmallestmove,triggering
intolerableburns.Iunderstoodthenwhymycomradeswerent
moving.
Theones omthecommi eedidntevenallowustohaveawet
hankyonourfaces.
Aerseveraldays,weweretaken,supportedbytheoneswho
werearoundustoabednearthewall,sowecanfacetheothers.I
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thenfoundoutthatPrisacaru,CantemirandVirgilBordeianu
formedacommi eeandtheywillinglyacceptednottobe
legionnairesanymoreandtoghtagainstthosewhosaidthey
werestilllegionnairesandtheywillremainsototheirdeaths;as
inPitesti,TurcanuEugenwasthebossoftheselfdenouncement
planandnotthebanditBogdanovici;becausethecommunist
regimedidntreallyneedreeducation,butonlyourdemise.
Aerwhatjusthappened,Munteanu,whodidnthavehisglasses
anymore,brokenbythebullies,withhisfaceswollenand
blackenedbybruises,stillhadthestrengthandcouragetotell
Prisacaru:Whogaveyoutherighttodowhatyoujustdid?To
thisPrisacarureplied:Thecommunistregime,whotrustsus,
andyouwillseehowmanyrightsIhave!Hethentookofhis
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jacket,askedfourstrongpeopletoholdMunteanusfeetand
hands,orderingforsomeonetobringhimawetclothaswell.He
undressedMunteanu,placedthewetclothonhisbu ocksand
startedhi inghimwithasavagefury.Munteanulamentedafew
timesbutaerawhilehedidntreactanymore.Prisacaruthen
toldtheoneswhoheldhisarmsandlegstothrowhimintothe
corner,onthecement.
Somuchbarbarismandcrueltyareimpossibletoexplain.How
canyou,insteadofansweringamanwhopolitelyaddressedyou
aquestion,hithimsocruellyuntilyouseebloodgushingoutof
him?
Aerwards,Prisacaruaddressedus:Youwillknowmypower,
youbandits,forbecauseofyou,thosewhosayyouarestill
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legionnaires,theregimeiskeepinguslockedawaytoo;butwe
willmakeyou,bandits,notonlysayyouarentlegionnaires
anymore,butevencursingthedaysyouwereborn.
InthatmomentIknewthiswasmyturntobetortured.AndI
guessedwhomytorturerwillbetooVirgilBordeianu.And
indeed,hegotup omthebedtellingme:Comeseehowgood
iendsweare,Iwillgiveyouahugyouwillneverforget.Aera
signal,fourmatadorsliedmedownwhereMunteanuhadbeen
torturedbeforeme,and,addressingalltheothersintheroom,
Bordeianusaid:Lookatthisbandit,wesharethesamename,
weweregood iendsoutside,andnowyouwillseehow iends
hugeachother.

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WhenIlookedaroundmeinsidetheroomandsawallthe
people,excepttheonesbeingtortured,gatheredin ontofthe
beds,itcrossedmymindforthersttimeandsaidtomyself:
God,thesearentpeople,butdevils.Onlyasatanpossessed
mancouldjumponyou,amanwhountilyesterdayyouthought
tobeyourbrother, iendandgoodcomrade,beingcapableof
anythingforhissake.EventodayIseeVirgilsfacewhichlooked
likethatofademonterrifyingyou.
Inoticedthesameterroronthefacesinsidetheroom.Virgil
screamedoncemore,justtobeheard:Everyonepaya ention
here,seea iendlyhug.Whenyourbest iendandevenyour
brotherwilldotoyouwhatIamnowdoingtomy iend,then
theregimewilltrustyou.Turningmyhead,Ibarelyhadthe
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strengthtotellhim:ButwhatdidIeverdotoyou,Virgil?To
thishereplied:Waitandseewhatyoudidtome.
Icouldntreasonanymore,itslikeIwaslivinganightmare.
Everythingseemedunreal,andmyphysicalstrengthleme.
ThatmomentIthoughtdeathwouldbeagoodthingforme.
Therearemomentsinlifewhenyouwishforthattocomeandit
doesnt.
Theyputthewetclotharoundme omthewaistdown.Ionlyfelt
therstblows.AerwardsIblackedout,Idontknowwhenthey
threwmebackonthecementoor,norhowmuchtimeIstood
unconscious.ThethingsIsueredduringthatdaythanksto
VirgilBordeianu,weresueredbyallmycomradeswhohadbeen
lyingonthecementoor.WhenIwoke,Isawthatwewereall
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disgured;wedidntfeelourbodiesanymore;thecoldcement
ooronwhichwewerelyingwasgoodforus.
*
IrememberthatinthefollowingSaturdaytheinevitablefall
cametopass.
Theygotusup omtheconcreteand,aidingus,tookustoface
tocommi eewhichconductedthetortures,underPrisacarus
command.TheyputOprisan,whowasarealcorpsebynow,ona
bed.AtPrisacaruscommand,oneinsidetheroomtiedhislegs
witharope.
TheremainingfourofuswerethentakenMunteanu,Iosub,
Comsaandme.AclubwashandedtoMunteanutohitOprisan

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onthesolesofhisfeet,becauseOprisansbodywasonebig
woundalready.
Munteanuhit,buthelackedstrength.Itisnotthestrengthof
thehits,butthefactthathehitandthefallwasinevitable.
ThenIosubwasorderedtohitOprisan.HehitOprisaninthe
solesofhisfeetafewtimestoo.Aerwardshedroppedtheclub
omhishand,sayinghecannothithimanymore.Cantemir
thenrushedathim,hi inghimwithamilitarybeltonthehead
andpunchinghiminthestomach.Iosubfellontheoorandhe
crawledbacktothecornerunderthewindowwhiletheykicked
himwiththeirboots.
Itwasmyturnnow.Whentheclubwashandedtome(Icannot
rememberwhatIwasthinkingthen,Ineverdid),Iheard
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Prisacaruyelling:Hityourmentor,bandit,becausehetaught
youphilosophyandhesagreatlegionnaireleader.
WhenPrisacarumentionedphilosophyIrealizedthatOprisan,
IosubandmewereherebecauseofLunguleac,whohadbeen
senttocell1845onthesecondoorwithamission.Lunguleac
cametomeandhitmewithsuchstrengththatIfellontheoor
aerjustafewhits.Then,heputstheclubinmyhandagain,
saying:Hityourprofessoryoubandit,otherwiseIwillkillyou
whereyoustand.
IrememberIhitOprisan,butnotbecauseofthethreat,but
becauseoftheconfusionwhichshroudedme,beingincapableof
thinkinganymore.Itdoesntma erifIhithimhardornot.

45

Whichwastheirpreviouscell

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Whatma ersisIhitthemanmostdeartome,whotaughtmeso
manythings.IhitthemanwhootherwiseIwaswillingtodiefor.
Myfallstarted omthismoment.
ComsaIeronimsturncameaswell.Theclubwashandedtohim
andorderedtohitOprisanonthesolesofhisfeet.Comsa,to
whomOprisanhadbeenasuperiorinsideTheLegion,himself
beingthesuperioroftheBrotherhoodoftheCrossinMoldavia,
refusedtohitOprisan.
Hisrefusequakedallthoseinsidetheroom.Theyneversawa
caselikeComsasuntilthen.SotheyorderedOprisantohit
Comsainstead.Oprisansaidthathecannotevenlihisarms.
Aerthissecondrefuse,Comsasfeetweretiedandsomeofthe
highschoolpupilsintheBrotherhoodoftheCrosswereinvited
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tohithim.Twoofthemrefusedtohithim,seeingthatComsa
refusedtohitOprisanaswell;thesueringthepoorkids
enduredforthis,onlytheyknow.Comsa,aerhewasseverely
beatenonthesolesofhisfeet,wasthrownintothecorneronthe
cementoor.
BackthenIdidntknowwhatitmeanstobeangryatmyself,but
aerseeingtherefusalsofComsaandOprisanandespeciallythe
refusalofthetwokids,Ithoughtveryli leofmyself,asnone
other.
InthatmomentIdidntaskGodforhelpandstrengthasour
Saviorsays:Apart omMeyoucandonothing,soIbecame
alone.Thenmymindbecamedarkandsatanusedmyweakness
andpushedmetowardsthefall.
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IwillneverforgetBogdanoviciseyes,whenImethimonthe
staircaseandIwillneverforgetOprisanseyes,whenIsatinthe
corner,onthecementoor,lookingathim.
IfitwerentforComsa,Oprisanandthetwohighschoolkids,I
wouldhavethoughtthatallthestudentsweremurderers.But
theywokemeuptotheharshestreality.
OnceIgotseparated omOprisanIdidnthearanythingmore
abouthim;allIknowishewassotorturedandtormentedin
PitestiandGherlathathenallydevelopedtuberculosis.
IoncemetOprisanatGherla,whenweworkedintheworkshops.
Isalutedhimwithaspecialadmirationbutcouldntlookintohis
eyes.Ineverhadthepowertogotohimandaskforforgiveness.

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Theonlyonewhotorturedmeandregre editcomingtoaskfor
myforgivenesswasCostachePavaloaia.
Thesayinggoesthattherstmistakeisthehardest,because
omthemomentyoumadeitachainreactionofmistakesis
beingtriggeredandthefallcannotbestoppedanymore.
Ithought,ifIeronimComsa,Oprisanandthetwopupilshadthe
gutsandthestrengthtorefusethatorder,andIfollowedthat
order omweaknessandhelplessness,thatmeansIwillgeteven
worsethanVirgilBordeianu.InthosemomentsofdespairI
sworeinmymindthatIwilltryandtryagainasmuchasIcanto
nothitanymoreandaskforGodshelp,togivemestrengthand
thepowertoendure.

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AerComsaandthetwopupilsweredisgured,Prisacarutold
Lunguleactoshowushowonemusthit.
IrememberthatIfeltgladwhenLunguleacbegantohitmewith
allhismightonthebu ocksandsolesofmyfeet.Ihonestly
forgavehimthenforallhedidtome.Infact,hehelpedme
expiatemyweaknessandhelplessness.Insteadofblackingout
likeinthetwopriorilltreatments,likethenwhenVirgil
Bordeianutorturedme,Lunguleacshitsgavemethestrengthto
understandthatallthisissatansstruggleagainstus,struggle
mademanifestthroughallthosewhoweretorturingus.
WhileLunguleacwashi ingmeIwonderedwhoisinsane:me,
oralltheothers?KeepingthisinmymindIhadthestrengthto

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walkonmyfeetandthrowmyselfonthecementoor,near
Oprisan.
Afewdaysofrelativecalmfolloweduntilwhenthedooropened
andsomeonewholookedlikeayoungman omLeonardoda
Vincispaintingscameintotheroom.1.85meterstall,withthe
bodyofanathlete,whocouldputyoudowninonlyonehit.
Helookedaroundtheroomandstoppedin ontofOprisan,at
theindicationsofPrisacaruofcourse.ThenhegrabbedOprisan
bythechin,turnedOprisansfacetohimandstartedthreatening
him:You,bandit,youareoneofPatrascusaids?Iwillkillyou
withmyownhands!
ThenheaskedwhoamongusisComsa.Hedidnthavethe
strengthtogetupanymore.HekickedComsawithhisfeet,then
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heturnedhimfaceup,bentoverhim,grabbedhimbyhiscoat,
raisedComsaandtoldhim:AreyouComsa?Youaretheone
whopoisonedsomanyhighschoolpupilsinMoldavia?Ihave
somethingspecialforyou!
HethenaskedwhoisMunteanu.AerMunteanuanswered,this
manbentover,grabbedhimbyhiscollar,liedhimintotheair
andslammedhimintothewallsoviolentlythatIdidntbelieve
hewillevergetupagain.Areyoutheaggressiveone?Iwillcalm
youdownsomuchyouwontevenopenyourmouthanymore.
ThenheaskedVirgilBordeianuwhoistheoneinsidethisroom
whoshareshisname.Areyouthemystic?Heaskedwhilehe
shookme.willgetyououtofmyhandsnowandhesaida
disgustingthingabouttheVirginMary.Hehitmesohardinthe
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headwithhisstthatIthoughtmyheadwillprotrudeinsidemy
chest;Irolledonthecementoor.HedidntseeIosubthough.
Judgingbythewaythoseinsidetheroomstoodquietathis
presence,andthewaythecommi eewasa eringhimlikethey
weresomeofhispuppies,IwasconvincedthisisTurcanu.Infact
Ifoundout omPrisacarusmouthmomentslaterwhenhe
pronouncedhisnameinsubjection.Turcanuthenwalkedamong
thebedstotakealookatthosethatwerewrappedinsheetsof
course.Idontknowwhathedidtothembutthenextdaytheir
sheetsweregoneandtheywerebroughtin ontofthetorture
commi eeandtrialed,askedtorevealeverythingtheydidntsay
duringtheearlierinterrogations,regardingthose eeand

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imprisoned.Andso,therstobjectiveinthecommunistsplan
regardingtheselfdenouncements46wastakingshape.
IrealizedhowathleticTurcanuwaswhenhegotnearthedoor,
andhowhelplessandweakwewere.Hecouldght100likeus
alone.Heandthecommi eehadaspecialdiettoo.Icouldonly
lookathisfaceoncethen.Hisfacewasofamanpossessedbyan
unlimitedanger.
Imethimmanytimesaertoo,evenfacetoface,andIhadthe
chancetostudyhimmore,physicallyandspiritually.
Hewasabeautifulman,uncommon,hadabighead,delicate
features,tallforehead,sensuallips,curledbrownrangingto
blondhairandaclassicGreektypenose.Extraordinarilybig

46

Thingstheydidntdeclareduringpriorinterroga ons

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blueandveryexpressiveeyes.Whenhe ownedyoubecame
terried.Hehadapronouncedchin.Herarelylaughedandhis
laughwaspleasant,a ractive.Hisproportionedbodywasthe
bodyofaprofessionalathlete.Hecouldthrowyoudownwith
onlyapunchoraslap.Whenhegotangryhewassocruelthat
hedestroyedanythinginhiswayjustlikeaferociouskiller.
HehadaveryhighI.Q.andaformidablememory.He
rememberedallthethingsdeclaredbythestudentsatBucharest
andGherla.
Hewassopossessedthatyoudidntknowwhattothinkofthe
man.Icomparedhimtoafallenangel.Thethirstforpower
obtainedbyanymeansdrovethismaninsane.Hebecamealow
andpossessedbrute.Whereverhewentthroughtorture
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chambers,corridors,4thhospitalroom,wherethestatements
werewri enwiththehelpoftorturesofcourseTurcanuspread
terroraroundhim,somuchso,thatanythingalivearoundhim
wouldbecomepetried.
ManytimeswhenIsawhimIrememberedhehadabeautiful
wifeandali legirl.
Hisintelligencewasblindedbyhisthirstforpower,byhiswillto
riseaboveothers,byanymeansnecessary.Andbecauseofthis
blindness,ormaybebecausehedidntknowtheessenceof
communism,Turcanubecameablindtoolwhichcommunists
canuse.
Andhisrewardwereburstsofleadwhichputholesinhisathletic
body.Thebloodofthosekilledbyhimaskedfortheretribution
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noonecaneverescape om.Thus,thecrookedmanbecamethe
victimofhisowncrookedness.
Aerhisexecution,hiswifegotadeathcerticatemadein
Oradea.
ItwasrumoredinAiudandlaterwhenIgot ee,thatbefore
Turcanugotpiercedbybullets,heshouted:TheBolsheviks
deceivedmeandIbelievedthemandIbeartheguiltfor
everythingthathappenedatPitestiandGherla.Onlythosewho
assistedhisexecutioncouldsayifthisisrealornot.
BeforeTurcanuletheroomno.2,heaskedPrisacaruandthose
inhisteamtojoinhiminthe4thhospitalroom,wheretheywere
goneforlike2hours.

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Whenthethree47returnedtotheroom,theirfaceswerechanged.
Ademonicfurypossessedthem.Justlikemadpeople,notlong
aersteppingintotheroom,theytooktheclubsintheirhands,
yellingtotheotherstocomeout omamongthebedsandform
agroupnearthedoor,dividedintworows.Tothosewhowere
lyingonthebedstheytoldthemtonotmove,andtotheothers,
hi ingeachonewiththeclub,orderedthemtohiteachother
untiltheirpowersaredrained.These,ofcourse,wereTurcanus
orders.
Iwaslookingthroughtheroomtoseeiftherewasanyonewho
didntwanttocomply.And,tomysurprise,besidethetwopupils
whodidntbeatComsa,therewereotherveorsixyoungmen,
oneofwhomIknew,whodidnthitothers.Prisacarutoldthese

47

Thetorturecommi ee

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unwillingyoungpupilstogonearthedoor,wheretheywereso
violentlybeatenthattheycouldntmoveanymoreaerwards.
Theothersbeatoneanotheruntilbloodwasgushingoutof
them.Prisacaruorderedthebeatingtostop,aerheconsidered
itwasenough.
Thisspectacleshookthoseofusonthecementsomuchthatwe
didntknowwhattobelieveanymore.The30whoearlierjumped
onuswerenoworderedtokilleachother.OhmyGod,whata
terriblething!
Iwascertainourturnwillcome.Indeed,GiogaParizianuwas
brought omthebeds,aidedbytwoothersintheroomand
broughttothetorturecommi ee.IosubMihaiwascalledtobeat
Giogabutheansweredthathedidnthaveanystrengthtodo
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that.ThenGiogawasorderedtobeatIosub;Iosubrefusedtoo,
sayingthathecouldntstandonhisfeetanymore.Prisacarutook
thisuponhimself.Hetookohisjacket,tookaclubandstarted
beatingIosubandGiogauntiltheywerentmovinganymore.In
themeantimeIheardVirgilBordeianuaskingPrisacarutonot
hitthemanymorebecausebloodwasgushingoutoftheir
bu ocks.Thesatanpossessedbeast,unleashed,stillwenton
however,untilthesetwodidntreactatall.AerwardsIosubwas
draggedtoourcornerbyhisfeet,andGiogaputbackinhisbed.
Iaskedmyselfhowcouldtheseyoungpeoplewithstandallof
thesetorturesanymore?GiogawasthetoughestcomradeImet
inprison.

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Myturncameaswell.IwascalledandatthesametimeTicuta
Strachinaruwasbroughttoo,whomIusedtoknowbeforeprison.
WhenIsawhimIstoodpetried:Ididntrecognizehim
anymore.Atallandbeautifulboy,delicateandtenderlikea
virgin,wasnowinastatewhichcannotbedescribed.Isaidto
myself:Howmuchtorturedidthismanenduretobechanged
somuch?Strachinarucouldnttalkanymore.
Prisacaruorderedhimtobeatthemysticbandit.Strachinaru
noddedhisheadinasignofrefusal.Theyorderedmetostrike
StrachinaruandIrefusedalso.PrisacaruthenorderedVirgil
BordeianutotorturemeandCantemirtobeatStrachinaru.It
wasthesecondtimearoundwhenVirgilBordeianuwashi ing

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mehardonthesolesofmyfeetandbu ocks,tearingmyesh
andsprayingmybloodalloverthebed.
Prisacaru,seeinghowmybloodwasgushingout,stoppedthe
beating.Myfeetwereswollensomuchandwhentheyhitmeit
waslikesomeonewasbeatingnailsinthebackofmyhead.A
forcestrengthenedmeandIdidnotpassoutasusual.Iwasthen
draggedbymyfeettoourcorneronthecementoor.Oprisan,
MunteanuandComsaweresocrushedandwerentbeaten
anymore.Theoneswrappedinsheetswhohadbeenbroughtto
ghteachotherandrefusedtodoso,werecrushedbytheothers
intheroom.
ItisnottruethatalltheoneswhoweretorturedinPitestiand
Gherlatorturedinturn.
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IwholeheartedlyconfessthatIsawwithmyowneyeshowGioga,
Comsa,thetwoyoungpupilsandtheother5plusStrachinaru,
aswellasthosewrappedinsheetsrefusedtotorture!
Butletthisbecleartoyouthattherewerenttwopeoplewho
wouldactthesame.Eachactedandproceededdependingonhis
genes,hismoralsandfaithinGodintherstplace,ofthelove
forHimandhisfellowman.
Anyonewhosaysthecontraryunderstandsnothing omhis
experiencethere.
ThereareRomanianswhopretendtobegreatphilosopherswho
wroteandarestillwritingaboutPitestiandGherlabasingtheir
writingsonlyonfactsimaginedortoldbyothersinterestedin
hidingthetruth.Itisonethingtoliveandsuerthedramainall
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itscomplexityandanothertotellfables omotherpeoples
fables.
Theonlyoneswhohavetheauthority,standing,rightandduty
totalkaboutthosekilledinthisterribledrama,aretheoneswho
wentthroughPitestiandGherla,theoneswhohavebeen
torturedforyears,whoareatthecenterofthisdrama,andnot
theoneswhowentthroughthereandadmi edtoeverything
omtherstslap.Furthermore,theoneswhowentthrough
PitestiandGherlaandwanttowriteaboutit,mustremember
whattheysawanddidinthere,bringlivewitnessesinorderto
testifythatwhattheywriteistrue,andwhentheystate
somethingaboutanotherperson,makesuretheirclaimscanbe
veried.
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Andanotherthing:theonewhowrites,lethimdoitwithfearof
God,becauseHeistheOneWhoknowsifthewriteristrueor
not.Theoneswhohavebeenmurderedorcommi edsuicide
becausetheyratherwantedtodiethanrenouncetheirfaith,or
theoneswhowentmad,onlytheyknowhowtheysuereditall,
becausetheyconfessedtheirfaithinGodandLegionopenlyand
notinambiguity.
Whocouldconvincemeotherwise,whenwithmyowneyesIsaw
andwithmyownearsIheardallthesethings,notonlyinthe
roomno.2onthegroundoor,butwhenIenteredinthesecond
phaseoftheselfdenouncements,atroomno.3inthe
basement?!

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Thecommi eeofthreereturnedwithfeardistortedfacesevery
timetheywerecalledawaybyTurcanu.Thecallhadthereasonto
disciplinethemfortheyinturnwouldhavetodisciplinethe
room.
Icannotrememberhowmuchtimepasseduntilwewerenally
allowedtoplacepadssoakedinwateronourwounds.Eventoday
IwonderandItremble,askingmyselfwhatwasthatunseenforce
whichgavesomuchpowerfortheseyoungmentowithstand!
Andanotherunbelievablething:inthatlthyenvironmentnot
evenonewoundinfectedin3wholemonths.

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Inthesubsequentweeksthebeatingswerereduced,butonly
becauseTurcanuwaspreparinggroupsofyoungmeninorderto
sendthemtoperformselfdenouncementsonthoseatCanal,
Gherla,Targsor,TarguOcnaandOcneleMari48.Beforeleaving
omPitesti,alloftheseyoungmenhadtobeinitiatedinthe
methodsoftorturerequiredforselfdenouncements.
Theonesbeingselfdenouncedhadtodeclareeverythingthey
knowaboutthemandotherpeople;declareanyoneinsideor
outsideprisonwhoareagainstcommunismaswellasthosewho
couldbeofinteresttothecommunistregime.
SointhefollowingweeksIwatchedhowthedenouncementswere
donein ontofthetorturecommi eeandthoseinsidetheroom.

48

English:TheBigMines

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Thesedenouncementshadtodeterminetheotherstosay
everythingseeingthatnothingknownorunknowncanbe
hidden.
Oneofthebiggestawsofthelegionnairesandnonlegionnaires
wasthattheydidntknowsatansmethodstokeephimselfin
power:terror,fear,lies,diversion,distrustandahugearmyof
informers.Theuseofinformers,peoplewhosoldthemselvesand
villains,isoneofcommunismsmostfearsomeweaponsfor
keepingitselfinpower.
Ourmistake,whichhadterribleconsequences,wasthatwe
consideredprisontobetheoutsideworld,trustingourcomrade
wholly,openingourheartstohimandtellinghimeverythingwe
didanddidntdeclareattheinterrogations.Andmorethanthat
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wespokenamesofthosenotyetarrestedbytheregimeandwho
werehostiletotheregime.Soweservedthecommunistsona
pla erthingsthatthecommunistscouldntotherwisendout
noteveninyears.
Thecollectivetorturephaseendedandtheindividualtorture
phasestarted,strictlyrelatedtowhatyoudeclaredordidnt
declare.Beforedeclaringinwritingatthe4thhospitalroom
beforeTurcanuandsomeofhisassistents,youhadtodeclare
beforethetorturecommi eeandthosepresentinsidetheroom.I
witnessedthesepublicdeclarationsforonemonthandahalf
time, om7a.minthemorningsuntil10oclockintheevenings.
Thisprocedurehadawelldenedpurposeinthecommunists
plan.
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Thisishow,usingthissatanicmethod,thestrongbondwhich
keptustogetherslowlybutsurelywasbeingweakenedandonce
broken,thedestructionofourunityandmutualtrustwere
accomplished.
Althoughyoungagefavorsmemory,youcouldntremember
exactlywhatyousaidordidntsaytothisoneorthatone.
Caziucscasecomestomymind,theexsuperiorofthe
legionnairesattheAgriculturalFacultyinIasi,whowasmy
roommateinroomno.2.OnedayTurcanuenterstheroom,
alongwithoneofCaziucscollegues.TurcanuasksCaziucifhe
hadsomethingelsetodeclare,andCaziucansweredno.
Becausehismemorydidnthelphimwhenhewascon onted
withhiscolleague,heforgotthathetoldhiscolleagueonetime
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thatinhisfathersbarnhehadburiedabarrelcontainingbooks,
magazines,newspapersandotherlegionnairedoctrinematerials.
TurcanuinsistedagainandCaziucstillansweredno.Then
TurcanuorderedCaziucsexcolleaguetolayitdowntohim.
Everyoneinsidetheroomwereexpectingthemostterriblethings
tohappen.TheexcolleagueofCaziucstartedrememberinghim,
eventellinghimtheplacewhereheburiedthosematerials.This
statementfellonCaziucsheadlikealightningboltandhe
couldntdenyiteither.
Untilhewasbroughtheretoroomno.2,Caziuchadbeen
horriblytorturedinoneofthedeathcellsontheheadoftheT.
Everyoneinsidetheroom,scared,werewaitingfortheoutcome
whichcameimmediately:YouBandits!Youstillhavemoreto
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declareuntilyourdeaths.Banditslikeyou,crimsonlegionnaires,
Iwillneverbelievebecauseonlywhendeadyourwordswillstop.
Thisgreatbanditlegionnairewhoisin ontofyou,everytimeI
askedhimhetoldmehehaddeclaredeverything,thathehad
nothingmoretohide.Nowlookathim!
Indeed,Caziuchadthefaceofamanondeathrowandthis
expressionlastedthreeyears.Infactithauntsmeaswellasifit
weremyfaceexpressionandnothis.
Caziucwasamongthersttogothroughthedenouncements
andhadalreadybeengreatlytorturedbyPrisacaruand
Cantemir.NowwewereallwaitingtoseewhatTurcanuwilldoto
thisboy.TurcanutoldPrisacarutobringhimaclubandawet
cloth.Hetookohisclothes,remainedonlyinhisshirtand
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rolleduphissleeves,askingforarope.Irealizedthenhowsturdy
andathletichewas.
HetiedCaziucslegs,orderingthecommi eetogetonhimand
holdhisarmsandhead.Hestartedhi ingonthesolesofhisfeet
untilthesolesofthebootsfello.AerthathetookoCaziucs
pants,putthewetclothonthebu ocksandstartedhi inghim
withthesamecrueltyZahariahithimbeforeintheroomno.3
basement.
IdidnthearCaziucmakeasoundalthoughriversofbloodwere
gushingoutofhisbu ocks.AerTurcanutorturedhimhe
untiedhisfeet.Caziuclookeddead;hebecameunconscious.
ThenTurcanugrabbedhimbytheshirtneckbandandwas
squeezingCaziucsthroatyellinglikeamadman:Youbandit,I
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willkillyounow!Buthedidnthaveanythingletokillin
Caziucbecausehewasalreadyhalfdead.Hecontinued
squeezingCaziucsthroatwhilewewerewatchingterried,
hi ingCaziucsfacewithhisstuntilitdisguredit.Weall
thoughtCaziucwasdead.Turcanugrabbedhimbytheleg,
draggedhimandthrewhimonthecementoorinourcorner.
AerIsawTurcanuunleashedinhisfurylikethemostsavage
beastIsaidtomyselfthatonlyasatanpossessedmancoulddo
suchthings.IpitiedCaziucsomuchthatIwantedtogokisshis
feetandwounds.
SometimelaterwhenwelethatroomCaziucswoundsstill
werenthealed;maybeheescapeddeathduetothefacthewas

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young,Idontknow.Somedressingssoakedincoldwaterwere
beingplacedonhiswoundsandhebarelycouldseeanymore.
Turcanusshowofforcedonein ontofthese45youngmen
insideroomno.2putthescareineveryone.Aerwards,beforehe
letheroom,hethreateneduswithdeathonceagain,sayinghe
willkillusifheseesthatwerehidinganythingagain.
InJune1950Caziucadmi edthathehidthosematerialsgivinga
statementtowhichhiscolleaguesstatementwasaddedplusone
morestatement omapupilforcedbyTurcanutodeclarethat
hisstatementisgenuine.Caziucwasreleasedin1954aer6
yearsofincarceration.In1956hewasarrestedagainonthebasis
ofthosestatementsandbasedontheaccusationthatinthetime
hewasstillinprisonhereceivedorder omNicolaePatrascuto
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restartorganizingtheremaining eelegionnairesacrossthe
country.Hewasalsoaccusedofknowingaboutthesocalled
orderofVicaNegulescusupposedlygiventohimbyHoriaSima,
thattheyounglegionnairesshouldmakethedenouncementsin
Pitesti.49SoCaziucwasincludedinVicaNegulescustrialand
sentencedtoforcedlaborfortheremainderofhisexistence.He
diedinsecret,inacell,inAiudsprison.
AerTurcanule,insidetheroomtherewastotalsilence.You
couldreadonallthefacesthefearofdeath.
PersonallyIwantedtodiethinkingthatmystatementswould
hurtothers,myconsciencebecamesomessedupandgloomy.

49

Thecommunistsweretryingtoputtheblameonthelegionnairesforthetortures,wheninfactthey,the
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Caziuclookedlikeacyanoticcorpse.Everyonesfacesreadthe
fearofthesamethingwaitingforus.ThebeatingCaziuctook
thattimesurpassedwithitscruelty,savageryandviolenceallthe
otherbeatingsIwitnessedinsidethatroom.
FacingCaziucscaseandothersthesameIcametothe
conclusionthatallthestatementsmadebytheyoungpeople
thereweredoneinthefearofdeath.Ifdeathwouldvecomeright
awayitwouldvebeensomucheasierbutthecontinuoustorture
wastooterribletowithstand.Andthenyouhadnooneto
comfortyouatall,someonetoknowheisbyyourside,sothe
timedidntpassatall.
Iconcludedthatthecontinuoustorturewithoutthehopeofever
endingmadethetortureddeclareeverythingheknew.Moreover,
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manytimesIsawpeopletellingliesjusttoescapethetortures
quicker.
Butnoma erwhatyouwouldhavesaidordone,youcouldntget
outsoeasilyaccordingtothedenouncementprocedure:You
canneverbelievethebandit;inthebanditthereisnotrust
becauseheneverishonest.Thebanditalwaystriestohidewhat
heknows,tomislead,sothebanditmustbedenounceduntilhe
dies.
AllthesethingsIheard omTurcanu,passingthemontothe
leadersofthecommi eesinthethreeyearsofdenouncements.
Whilesi inginroomno.2Imadeaplan:whattostate,how
muchandaboutwho.IdidntrememberwhatIhavebeentelling
IosubwhoknewsomuchaboutmyactivitywhileIwas eeand
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whatIhavebeentellingtheothercellmatesbefore,sothis
confusedmyplan.
Whatsurprisedmewasthequantityofinformationtheseyoung
peoplehadregardingtheoneswhohadntbeenarrestedyet.The
publicstatementhadtocontaintwothings:rst,thatyouarent
alegionnaireanymoreandthatyoudontwanttohearorknow
anythingabouttheLegion.Thestatementhadtobecontinued
withthedenigrationoftheLegionssuperiorsandyour
comrades.Second,youhadtorenounceyourfaithinGod,your
Christianviewoflife,yourChristianmorals,beingaskedto
blasphemetheChurchtoo.
Attheendofourstayintheroomno.2,ofusve,an
extraordinarythinghappenedwithIosubMihai.(Ilaterfound
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outthatthosewithsentencesbetween2and6yearswere
preparedtobetakenattheCanal,wherethedenouncements
wouldbecontinuedandsomeofthemrecruitedtobeinformers
andrats.Theregimewantedtoknoweverythingthatwentonin
thisdeathcampcalledTheDanubeBlackSeaCanal.)
Theydidntforceusvetodeclareanythingrightawaybecause
wehadsentenceslongerthan10yearsandTurcanuknewall
thesewerelongtostayunderhisauthorityandnotoneinforced
laborwillgetoutwithoutsayingeverythingheknewandwhat
Turcanuwantedhimtosay.
Theonlyoneofusvewhobeganwritinghisstatementwas
IosubMihai.Icarefullyobservedhimtoseewhathewillsay
aboutme.Butheneverdidgettosayanythingaboutmy
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activitieswhileIwasoutorwhatItoldhimwhileinsidethecell,
becauseathingcameup.Thecommi eewantedtoknow om
Lunguleac,beforeLunguleaclefortheCanal,whowereIosubs
contacts,whoknewIosubwaspursuedbythepoliceforbeinga
legionnaireandwheredidIosubhideonthetimehewasa
fugitive.IosubmadethemistaketobelievethatLunguleacwasnt
socorruptedastosaythingswhichIosubdidnteventhinkmuch
of.WhenPrisacaruaskedIosubwhowerehiscontactsaside om
family,howmuchtimehespentasafugitiveinhisparents
houseuntilhisarrest,Iosubrepliedhedidnthaveanycontacts.
PrisacaruthencalledLunguleac omamongthebedsand
Lunguleacdenouncedhim:

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YouBandit,didntIgowithyoutoyourvillagepriestandhe
askedyouwhyyouarentpresentatyourexams,becausewe
wereintheexamsession,andyoutoldhimthatthe
legionnairesarebeingarrestedandthatswhyyouranaway
omIasiandcamebackhomeinordertoavoidarrest
yourself?...
Iosubdeniedtheyeverwenttoapriesttogether.Asin
Caziucscase,PrisacaruaskedIosuboncemoreifwhathe
saysistrue.Iosubdeniedagain.
ThatmomentPrisacaruwasinamedbyfurylikeamad
dog.Hetookaclubandbeganhi ingIosubinrandom
partsofthebody.Allofthethreejumpedonhimandhit
himuntilIosubbecameunconsciousanddidntmove
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anymore.Aerwardstheyslammedhisheadonthecement
oorandPrisacarukickedIosubinthestomachwithhis
bootsasifhewereasoccerball.Hetoldallothersinthe
roomthatnooneisallowednearhim.SeeingthatIosubis
notrecovering omhiscomatheypouredwateronhishead
andlehimsitinacomaallnightonthecementoor.
NextmorningIosubwasbarelymoving.Ihadbeenthinking
heisalreadydead.Thecommi ee50,seeingheisstill
moving,puthimdownonablanketinourcorner.
Threemonthstimewhileweweretorturedincellno.2,we
didntwashatallorchangeourclothes.Oursmellwas
unbearable.

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Thenextdayorthedayaer,thedoorwasopenedand
Turcanufuriouslyentered.Heturnedtowardusand
orderedallthosewhoheartheirnamestofollowhim:
Munteanu,Comsa,BordeianuDumitruandIosub.Because
Iosubcouldntmovehecalledothertwointheroomtograb
himbyhisarmpitsandfollowhimcloselyalongwiththe
otherscalled.Whenweexitedthisroomthecorridorswere
allempty, omthegroundooruptothe3rdoor.Turcanu,
withthebundleofkeysinhishandwalkedin ontofus.
Whenwegottothe2ndoorwedidntgobacktoouroldcell
(18)buttocell16,whichwasempty.

CELL NO. 16
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AerwewalkedinTurcanucalledusontothecorridorone
byone,allofusexceptIosub.Hetookmeaside,grabbedme
bythecollarofmyjacket,liedmeupintotheairand
slammedmeagainstthewallwithsuchforcethatIfeltmy
armsandlegsdetaching ommybody.
Hetoldme:Youbanditandmystic,youwillgo omthis
celltoanothercellandyouwontsayanythingaboutwhere
youhavebeenuntilnow,whathappenedtoyouandwhat
yousaw,otherwiseyouaredead.Intheroomwhereyouwill
goyouwilltrytondoutinformationthatwasntdeclared
intheinterrogationsregardingtheiractivitiesbothoutand

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inprison.DidyougetwhatIjusttoldyouandwhatyou
mustdo?
Ireplied:Yes,sirTurcanu,andheanswered:Go,getthe
fuckinsidethecell!
Thenextdayorthedayaer,Iosubstartedtohavegreat
headandliverpains.IaskedMunteanuwhohadbeena
medic,toconsulthim.Munteanuwasa aidhewillbe
torturedbecausehenotedIosubsdeathwhichhadbeen
provokedbyPrisacarustortures.BecauseIosub,whocould
barelyspeak,persisted,Munteanuacceptedtoconsulthim.
WhenMunteanutouchedIosubsliver,InoticedMunteanu
developapeculiarexpressiononhisface.Munteanusaidhe

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believedthattheheadpainsarenotsomethingtobe
worriedaboutthoughandtheywillpass.
AnothertwodayspassedandIosubdidntrecoveratall.He
wasingreatpain.Munteanu,noticingIosubspositionon
thebed,thatofamansickofmeningitis,startedtobe
fearfulsayingthatIosubisgone.Hearingthis,Icameclose
toIosub,whomIloveddearlyandstartedstrokinghisface.
Sensingthathewontmakeit.Hegentlywhisperedtome
thathedidntregretthethingsinhislifeandofallthe
thingshetoldthecommi eeduringthetorturenothingwas
true.
Hisstategotworseeverypassingday.Becauseofhis
sicknessandweaknesshecouldntspeakanymoreorgetup
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ofthebed.IcalledtheguardaskinghimtotakeIosubtothe
medicbutherefusedsayinghehadordersnottotake
anyonetothemedic.
ThefollowingmorningtheybroughtGiogainsidethecell
too.Oncehecametheatmospherelitupabit.Wewereback
togetherallthree,yearcolleagues.Iosubwasgladwhenhe
sawGiogaandtoldGiogaheisntgoingtomakeitbecause
Prisacarukilledhim.
BecausehisstategotworseeverysecondIaskedtheguard
Florica,whostillhadsomethinghumaninside,insisting
thatIosubmustbetakentothemedicsoce.Turcanuwas
noticedaboutthisbecausenoprisonerwastakentothe
medicsocewithouthisapproval.Theprisonwarden,the
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guardsandevenMarinathepoliticalocerdidntmakea
movewithoutTurcanusapproval.Hehadhispower om
Nicolski.Theywereallshivering,fearfulofhim.
WithTurcanusapproval,Iosub,supportedbyFloricathe
guardandGioga,whoaskedmetolethimhelpIosub
instead,Iosubwastakentothemedicaloce.Thesanitary
didntevenlookathimthesewerehisordersitseems
andplacedhiminanearbycell.Whenhecamebacktoour
cell,GiogatoldmeIosubslastwords,whotoldGiogaheis
goingtodie.
AfewdayspassedandFloricatheguardcameandasked
forIosubsbelongings,insistingweputeverythinghehad
omthepenitentiaryinapackage.Aerthepackagewas
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madeIhandedittoFlorica,andhe,avoidingalltheothers
inthecelltohear,veryquietlytoldme:Theboyisdead.
DonttellanyoneItoldyou.Iknowyouwerehisbest iend.
Beforehediedhecriedoutyourname.ThenFlorica
whisperedasifhewasthinkingoutloud:Anotheroneis
dead!
Hereishowoneofusdied,havingfaithinGodandThe
Legion,mydearcomrades.
ForallofuswhoknewIosub,hismemoryandsacricehad
beenanimboldandanexample.Hediedasayoung
legionnairemercilesslykilledbytheungodlyandlawless.
IosubwastherstmanIsawmurdered.

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Aerafewdays,walkingtogetherwithGioga,whomI
trusted,toemptyourchamberpots,ItoldhimthatIosub
died.IsawGiogathenhowhecouldntholdhistearsback
omfalling.ThenIunderstoodwhyGiogawantedtoescort
Iosubonhislasttriptothemedicaloce.Andthisishow
theprophecyofIosubsmotherthathewillneverbeamedic
cametopass.
Ifyoucouldbearthetortureininterrogationitwasbecause
youknewthatwhenyougotbacktoyourcellyoufoundyou
comradessi ingtherewhowerearoundyouandwhowere
yourcomfort.
Beingtorturedbyyourenemies,youenduredthesuering
withmanhood.Butinthetorturechambersthe iends,
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colleaguesandcomradeswhofoughtwithyoubefore,were
nowyourtorturers.Inalltheroomsonthegroundoor
andbasementthesamethingsoccurredwiththeyoung
studentsastheonesinroomno.2.
AttheendofJuly,whenFloricatheguardwasescortingus
withthechamberpotstothetoilet,lookingoutthewindow,
hewastalkingasifhethoughtoutloudbutforusaswell:
Someareleaving.
Weweresurethattheseweretheoneswithashortsentence
upto5yearslongandhadbeenalreadytrainedintorture,
somefortheCanal,someforTargsorandothersforGherla.
AttheendofJulyFloricatheguardopenedthedoorandin
asovoicehetoldus:Boyspackyourbagsbecauseyouare
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leavingthissectionandGodOnlyknowswhatwillbecome
ofyou.
Wepackedourbags,lookedateachothermeaningfullyand
wishedeachotherwell,likewedidothertimeswhenwegot
separated.AerwegotoutofthecellFloricalockedthedoor
andtoldmetofollowhim.Enteringthebasementsectionof
roomsIsawwhatwaswri enabovetherstdooronthele
:roomno.3.ThemomentIgotin ontofthedoorFlorica
signaledtheguardonthatsectiontocomewiththekeys.
ThatguardIdidntseebefore;youcouldseehewasnewly
hired.Heopenedthedoorandinvitedmein.Tomysurprise
theroomwasfullofcomradeswhommanyIknew
personallyoratleastheardaboutthem.Theywere om
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Iasi,Suceavaandothersstill omBucharestandCluj.The
oneswhoknewmerushedtowardsmetohugmeand
welcomeme.

PITESTI (3)
Basement room no. 3
2nd room of torture

Whentheyarrangedtheroomsinside,repurposingthemforthe
useindenouncements,Turcanudidntshowuponthe
corridors,sotheprisonerscannotknowthepurposeofthese
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arrangements.Becauseofthatthearranginginsidetherooms
wasonlydonebythechiefsectionguards.
Theroomno.3remainedonthescreenofmyconscienceasa
stainwhichwillneverbewipedawayexceptalongwithmyown
death.
Ilookedinsidetheroomtoseeiftherewereanyfamiliarfaces
previouslywithmeinroomno.2,butdidntrecognizeanyone.
Inprisontherewasatradition.Thatwastochooseasuperior
insidetheroom omamongtheinmates.Onewhowouldensure
orderanddisciplineamongtheinmatesandhewouldbethe
inmateslinkwiththeadministration.
Inthatdaysaernoontheroomssuperiorwasbeingpicked.
PersonallyIhadtorefuseanykindofproposalbecauseIhada
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mission omTurcanu.(SoIaskedmyself:whodoItalktoand
whodoIaskforadviceconcerningthis?Eventhebest iend
todaycouldbeyourbiggestenemytomorrowbecausehewas
forcedtogiveyouawayduringhistortureandthetroublewould
bedouble,formeandforhim.ThiswasourbigtragedyatPitesti
andGherla.SowhodoItell?NOONE!Iwaslealone,likea
manonacapsizedboatinthemiddleofthesea.Iwastormented
forweeksinarow:whatdoIdo?)
Nowbacktotheroomboss,thereweresomenamesproposed.
MostoftheminsidetheroomwerestudentsintheLegionnaire
StudentCorpsIasi51sotheywantedtopickoneoftheirstobethe
roomsuperior.IproposedMagirescuEugenforroomboss,oneof
mytwofacultycolleaguespresentinsidetheroom.Whenhesaw

51

C.S.L.

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Ipropositionedhimasaroombosshemadeacounter
propositionhepickedmesayingthatIwasanexperienced
guy,Ihadbeenonthe ontlinessoIhadauthority,calmand
discernment.SoIwasthemostttoholdthisfunction.Even
thoughIcategoricallyrefused,Icouldntchangethemajoritys
decision.
Facingthisdiresituation,Idecidedtoaccepttheelectionbecause
thishelpedmeaccomplishmyplanevenbe er.Iwouldhaveto
paydearlyforthat.
SomeofthecomradeswhoknewmewellaskedmewhyI
disappeared omthesectionandwheredidIgoseveralmonths.
IrepliedthatIwaskepttogetherwithOprisanandIosubin
severeisolationbecauseLunguleachadbeenra ingonus.
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WhattroubledmewasthatIdidntknowwhattodoregarding
themissionTurcanutaskedmewith,meaningtonotgive
anythingawayandinsteaddigforinformation,andIhadto
solvethisproblemreallyfast.
Itriedtositquiet.Tosay,ornottosaywhathappenedinroom
no.2wouldmakenodierencewhatsoever.Irealizedeventually
thatitwoulddonogoodifItalked,nortomenortotheothers
insidetheroom.Iwassuretheybroughtustothisroomjustto
betakenawaylaterfordenouncementssoIthoughttonot
disturbtheirpeaceuntilthedramawouldstart.
ThesecondofTurcanusdirectivestodigforinforemained
theugliestissue.Iwasbeingputinthesituationtofollowthat
orderbutIwouldregretitfortheremainderofmydays.I
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couldntavoidtheissueeither.IwaswonderingifTurcanuwas
reallyrememberingallthathesaidtohundredsofyoungmen.I
toldmyselfitisimpossibleforhimtoremembereverything.SoI
avoidedtomakeotherssuer.OnceImademydecisionIputit
inpractice.Iwontdigforinfo omanycomradeornon
legionnairecolleagueandIwontengageothersinpointless
dramaespeciallyinthecircumstanceswewerein.
Inbasementroomno.3,untilthedenouncementsbegan,there
wasanunforgo encalmandharmony.Therewassome eedom,
liketheonebefore,intheforcedlaborsections, eedomgiven
withapurpose.Meaning,whenwewenttoemptyourchamber
potsinthetoiletwedndourselvesin ontofothercomrades

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andweexchangedinformation.Thisallowedmetondoutthe
namesofthecomradesinthefourbasementrooms.
Butthiswasthecalmbeforethebigstorm.Thethingwhich
obsessedmewasthateverytimetheroomdooropenedIcould
seeTurcanuwithhisdozensofmurderersrushinginsidethe
roomandhi ingrightandle.Thisishowthestartofthe
denouncementsbegan.SothemonthsIspentinthatroom
beforethesecondwaveofdenouncementswereformemorethan
anightmare.
Iknewthelegionnairemeetingsthatsomeofourcomradeswere
having,gatheringthemselvesinacornerinsidetheroomwerea
bigmistake.Itriedtostopthem omhavingthembutIfailed.

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IonicaPintilie,good iend,comradeandcolleague omthe


medicalfaculty,cametometoaskformyblessingand
participationinthesemeetingsbecauseIwastheroomsuperior.I
hadactivatedwithhimoutside,Iknewhimwellandastrong
bondof iendshipgrewbetweenus.Hewasyoungerthanme,
hadadelicateintellectualconstitutionandIwassurehewont
makeitthroughthephysicaltortures.Heremainedorphanedof
bothparentssincechildhoodandhadbeenraisedbyarelative
whodidnthavechildren.Hewasendowedwithexceptional
intelligenceandhadbeenoneofthemostprocientstudentsat
theMedicalUniversityinIasi.Hehadbeenraisedbyhisadoptive
parentswiththemostpureandunshakeablefaithinGod.

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Heclumpedinsidehimunequaledgis.Hehadnaturalborn
moralpurityandgoodness,almostlikeanangelontheearth.
ThoseImetintheprisonlikePintiliecouldbecountedonmy
ngers.
DuetosomanygisGodbestowedonhimandbecausehedidnt
wanttoalterthem,hewastorturedtodeathwithtortureswhich
surpassanyimagination.
ItrustedhimmorethanItrustedmyselfsoIadvisedhimlikea
brothertostophavingthelegionnairemeetingsinsidetheroom.
IalreadyknewwhatwasgoingtohappenandItriedwithallmy
powertostophim.ButPintiliehadhisownmissionontheEarth
andHeavencalledhimtositamongtheChristianmartyrs.He
combinedsoharmoniouslyfaithandChristianmorals,thelove
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forGodandhisneighbor,theundyingthirstforknowledgeand
faithinTheLegionnaireMovementthateventodayIseehimasa
messenger omanotherworld.Forthosewhoknewhimand
myself,Pintilierepresentedtheprototypeoftheidealman.He
didntwanttolistentome:hiscallwasonething,andmy
weakness,another.ButIamsurethatnoma erwhatheorwe
did,hewouldhavebecomeamartyranyway,becausethiswashis
destiny.
Iaskedhimnottorevealmyopinionconcerningthelegionnaire
meetingsandifhewishes,toaskcomradeDinescutotakepart
inthesemeetingstoo,whowasinprisonsincethetimeof
Antonescu.IdontknowifheaskedDinescuornot,butDinescu
didnta endthelegionnairemeetings.
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FromthetimeIenteredtheroomuntilthedenouncements
startedIdidntseethesmallestanimosityorcontradiction
betweenlegionnairesornonlegionnairesintheroom.How
muchharmonyandgoodwillbetweenthesepeoplewhenthe
spiritofloveandtrustunitedthem!ButwhenIthoughtatthe
roomno.2Itrembled.
Inthecalmbeforethestormallhadintellectualpreoccupations.
Eachonespreadhisknowledgebeforehiscomradewithsucha
goodwillyoucanrarelyndotherwise.Themanygoodand
beautifulthingslearned!Youfeltlikeyoua endedaclasswhere
eachonewaspupilandprofessor.Athingwhichdeeply
impressedmewasthedisciplineofthecolleagueswhowerent
legionnairesandwho edinperfectlywiththelegionnaires
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withoutstartinganyarguments.Anotherthingwhichmadea
markonmeinagoodwaywasthatnoonedidanythinginside
theroomwithoutaskingformyopinionrst.
Atthatdatemanyofusdidntgetclothesorlaundry omhome
orpenitentiary.Manywoolensweatersandsocksweretornand
requiredxing.SothinkingtobeofaidtomycomradesI
learnedhowtoknit.Discoveringoneofuswhoknewhowtoknit,
Ilearnedhowtodoitinaverysmalltime.Noticingthatyou
couldseeonlya3rdoftheroomthroughthepeephole,Ithought
thatinthehiddenpartyoucouldseeaboutyourbusiness.I
startedwiththewoodenbodkins,thenIaskedamorehumane
guardtobringmesomewiresayingthatIneededtorepairthe
bunk.ImmediatelyaerIprocuredthismaterialIshaped5
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bodkinsoutofitsharpeningthewireagainstthecement,sonot
oneinsidetheroomremainedoutsidemyhelp.Sobesidesbeing
theroombossIwasalsothegirlofthehouse.
26thofOctoberwascomingagain,SaintDumitru,myname
anniversary.AyearbeforeIwascalledandquestionedbythat
suspiciousindividualItalkedaboutearlier.Now,knowingthat
oneofthesedaysthedenouncementstormcouldbeunleashed,I
hadadarkhunch.
Twoorthreedaysbeforethisdatesomeofmycomradescameto
meandpropositionedthatIwillgettheirportionofhominyfor
mynameanniversary.Iacceptedbecauseoftheirpersistencybut
withonecondition:torepaythemsometimelater.They
consultedwitheachotherandcametometellingmeagainnotto
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refusethemandnottorepaythembecausethiswouldgreatly
oendthem.
IacceptedbecauseifIwouldhaverefusedIwouldhavehurttheir
feelings.ItsurprisedmethatMagirescuwasamongtheseaswell.
Noneofmynameanniversarieshadthesameintensitylikethe
1950holidayofSaintDumitruatPitesti,evenuntilthedayIwrite
thesewords.ItwasnotthatcommonhominywhichIsavored,but
thesacricetheymadeforme.Butaboutthehominynow,this
weaknesscostmedearlylater.Andwhathurtthemostwasthe
torturethesepoorpeoplehadtoendurefortheirkindgesture.
Thenextdaythedoorwasopenedandaguardappeared
holdingapieceofpaperinhishand,askingwhoofusis
MagirescuEugen.Turcanudidntshowupinthesekindof
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situationsinordertonotgivehimselfaway.Heonlycametothe
roomsorthecellswherethedenouncementwasalreadyfull
thro le.HearingMagirescusname,Ibeingtheroomboss,hadto
conrmthatmanisreallyMagirescu;Igotnearthedoorand
askedtheguardifMagirescuneedstopackhisbelongings.The
guardsaidno,andthismademesuspicious.Icamenear
Magirescuandlookedintohiseyes.Atrstheblushed,thenhe
becamewhiteaslime.Hejustdidnthaveavoiceanymore.Aer
hisdepartureIthoughttheytookhimsomewhereinatorture
cellinordertopreparehimforthedenouncement.Therewere
caseswhenotherswentwithouttheirbelongingsandlaterthe
guardcameandtookthem.

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Theonesinsidetheroomdidntsuspectanythingbecausethey
couldntimagineatallwhatwashappeninginsidetheprison.
Thesecretwassowellkeptthatonlythosewhowentthroughthe
denouncementsknewwhatsgoingon.Andwhentheywere
broughttoacelltogetinformation,asmycasewas,theydidnt
sayawordofwhatwasreallygoingon,becausethedivulgingof
thatsecretwaspunishedexemplary.Andtheplanforesawthat
allofusmustgothroughthedenouncements.
IknewthatMagirescuhadbeenhiredinburdensomeactivities
whichwerepressinghisshouldersandthatiswhyIbelievedhe
wastakentotheinquiry.HedidntcomebackforlunchsoI
askedPavaloaia,whosleptbesidehim,toholdhisfood.

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Buthedidntcomefortheeveningmealeither,butonlyatlights
out,atabout10oclock.AssoonashewalkedintotheroomI
lookedathimandIsawhisfacewastotallychanged.Poorman,
onlyheknewthedramahefeltinsidehim.Iwenttohim,because
IknewhimtobeanhonestmanandfondoftheLegion,andI
askedhim iendlywherehehadbeen,whathappenedwithhim
andwhyheistroubled.Magirescusanswerdidntsuceforme.
FromthatmomentonIstartedsuspectinghimoffoulplay,fact
whichprovedtobeentirelytrue.Iwassurehewaslyingtome
andallhisbehavioruntilthismomentwasonlyforappearances
sake.FromthatmomentonIbecamedistanttohim.He,being
intelligentandwelltrained,noticedmychangeinbehavioras
well.
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Thenextday,aerthehominymeal,CostachePavaloaiawas
takenoutoftheroomandsoonaerwardMagirescu,alongwith
acomradewhowasrstbroughtintotheroomamonthbefore.
HisnamewasPetricaCojocaruandhehadbeenastudentat
PolytechnicsinTimisoara.Aertheyhadletheroom,Iwassure
thatallthesepeoplehadbeeninthedenouncementsalreadyand
werebeingsentbyTurcanutobasementroomno.3witha
mission:toextractinformation.Iwonderedifotherswillbe
calledaswellbutbesidesthethreenoonewascalled.
Threedaystimetheyweretaken omtheroomandcameback
lateintheevening.Butinordertoremoveanysuspicion,they
weretakenandbroughtbackonlyoneatatime.Iwassurprised
thatIhadntbeenrequested,althoughIhadbeendenounced
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too.IwaswaitinganymomenttobecalledandIbelievedonly
Godsmercycouldprotectme,becauseIdidntwanttoharm
thoseinsidetheroombylearninginformation omthem.Iwas
alsosurethatthethreehadbeentalkingalotaboutme,because
Turcanuneededtohaveaclearpictureaboutmystanding.Iwas
alsosurethatthethreewroteaboutallintheroomsoTurcanu
knowshowtoactagainsteveryoneofthem.Inoticedthatwhen
theyreturnedintheroomlateintheevening,theirconductwith
theotherswasverychanged;theywereplo ingagainstmeas
well,forsure.
IwasthinkingterriedathowIamgoingtopayfornot
squeezinginformationoutofmycomrades.Idontknowwhy,

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butIwantedwithallmyheartthatallwouldcometopasssooner
becauseithadtohappenanyway.
Thea itudeofthethreetowardsmeandtheothersintheroom
strengthenedmyconvictionthattheyhadbeeninthe
denouncements,justlikeme.Idontknowhowtheydidthere,
butIcouldalreadyseethemnamedbyTurcanuasthetorture
commi eeinbasementroomno.3.
Iaskedmyselfhowthereeducationwillstartinhere.Atthattime
Ididntknowhowthereeducationinthe4thhospitalroom
started.Ionlyknewthatinroomno.2therewereonlyveofus
andalmostthirtyofthem,thenumbersclearlybeingintheir
favor.

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Inbasementroomno.3though,themajoritywerepeoplewho
hadntbeeninthedenouncements,soIwonderedwhatmethod
willTurcanuuseonthem.Willhetakeeachoneatatimetothe
torturecellswherehellbeatthemtoapulp,willhecomewitha
gangofbulliesarmedwithclubs?Turcanuwassosturdyand
athleticthathecouldtakearoomfullofweakenedpeoplelikeus.
Onlyonepunchwassucientforeach.Isawthisinroomno.2
inCaziucscase.
Maybethereaderwillaskhim/herselfwhereallthesepeople
omthetorturecommi eegetsuchstrength.Theansweris
simple.Thebulliesatealot.Iwatchedinroomno.2howtheyate,
evenmakingthemselvesfa erinordertopracticetheir
profession,whilethevictimswerestarvedinordertobecome
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incapableofphysicalresistance.Transformedintomoving
skeletons,theycouldbeatusineverywaytheywanted.Turcanu
andthebossesofthetorturecommi eeshadspecialalimentary
dietsandIsawthisinbasementroomno.3,whenIwatched
Zaharia,thebossofthetorturecommi eeinthisroom,howhe
leeverydayatacertainhourandhegotbackwithapinkish
facethefaceofamanwhoateabundantly.Sointhese
situationsaclubwasenoughforawholecartofclaypots,we
beingtheclaypotsandTurcanutheclub.

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THE DENOUNCEMENT OF
THOSE IN BASEMENT ROOM
NO. 3

ThethingsIwillrelatetoyou omnowonarethingswhichI
personallyexperiencedandendured.
Idrawthereadersa entiontothefactthatthosesentencedto
forcedandhardlaborwereyoungpeoplewithastrongghting
history,withaspecialresponsibilityanda achmenttothe
Legion.Allthoseinforcedlabor,withveryfewexceptions,had
beensentencedtomorethan10yearsandthehardlaboronesto
between5and10years.Thesecategoriesformedtheeliteofthe
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youngLegionmembers,withfunctions,stagesofactivityand
responsibilitiesintheLegion.Thisexplainswhythiscategorywas
letobepunishedlast,becauseforthemtherewasnoquestion
ofadventure,test,orgameconcerningtheirLegionactivity.
AllthesecomradeshadbeeneducatedintheBrotherhoodsofthe
CrossandenduredAntonescuscruelpersecution.They
representedthecontinuityofthelegionnaireactivityaerthe
coupdetatin1941.Theywereolderthan20;somehadevenbeen
soldiersintheWar,likeme,othershadbeenarmyocers,
purged omthearmyatthedateoftheirarrestsandhadbeen
continuingtheirstudiesindierentfaculties.Formostofthem
theinterrogationswereverycruelandtheyhadabigcumulusof

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information.Thisiswhythecommunistsactedmethodically
uponthemfor2years.
Itoldyoubeforehowsomeoftheseyoungsouls,aerthestartof
thedenouncementsin1949,weretakenoutoftheircellsto
torturecellswhereforayeartheywerekeptunderTurcanusclub.
Thesecomradeswerethenaccusedbytheirtorturersoutoffear,
butaccusedalsobytheoneswhodidnthavetherighttojudge
thematall.SeeingthemnakedatthebathroominGherla,I
remainedpetried.ButIwilltellyoumoreaboutthislater.
*
Iamnotaccusingandrevoltingagainstanyone,butIfeelhow
thosesoulskilledintorturesscreamforrevengewhenfellow
men,indierentoftheirpoliticalorreligiousviews,treatthis
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phenomenasupercially,inventingdatesandfactswhicharent
relatedtothedramaitself.Noonehastherighttojudgethosein
PitestibutOnlyGodHimselfandthem.Youwillbejudgedby
Heaventoo,youtheonesservinganoccultoranotherwho
slanderandaccuse,intentionallyornot.Godwilljudgeyoutoo
inHisrighteousnessandaccordingtoyourdeedsinthenames
ofthosetortured,whowentmadorwhowerekilled.Theones
whodidntsuerhunger,thirst,cold,longing,defeat,havent
beentortured,humiliated,persecutedanddisregardedforthe
sakeoftheirnationnotevenforaday,shouldnthavetherightto
speakinitsname.Andthosewho,forthreeyears,sueredand
enduredthemosthorribletortures,degradationsand
humiliations,whentheirconscienceandtheirdiscernmentwas
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raped,killinginthemallthathadbeenhuman,shouldnteven
bediscussed.Whocouldjudgethem?Whocouldevenplacea
ngerontheirwoundsorevenlightacandleforthosekilled?
WasCorneliuCodreanusprophecythatwewillgetatsomepoint
intheswampofdesperation,onlyagureofspeech?
Whenyouhavenotbeenchained,youhavethepossibilityof
suicide,ifyourenotaChristian,oryoucantaketheswordand
hittheonewhobroughtyoutodespair.So,youcanchoosedeath
ifyouwantto.But,ifyouareinchainsandonthelimitof
despair,whenyouwanttodieandcannotkillyourself,nortake
theswordinyourhandandstuitintotheonewhoistorturing
you,becauseallyouhavearethosechainsyoucannotescape

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om,thenthereisnohope omanywhere.Thatswhytheone
whoistorturingyoucanturnyouintoacriminaloraninformer.
Howdoyou,outofselshinterestsandpoliticalvices,dareto
talkthisdrama,judgingthepeoplewholivedit?
Thereisasaying:anhourcanbringmorethananyear.But
thatdayandhourhadtocomebecausetheywerepartofthe
destiny.ThisdaywasanascensiontoHeavenforsome,forothers
suicideora empttosuicide,andforotherscollapseandthe
passagethroughtheswampofdesperation.Someremainedthere
anddrownedfewandthiswasbecausetheyhadfaithin
theirownstrength.
Theoneswhocollapsed,butadmi edtotheirhelplessnessand
weakness,keepingtheirfaithandhopeinGodsmercy,escaped
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thisswampbruisedandcut,kneelingdown,broughtdownto
thegroundandstillundefeated.Andwhentheynallygotoutof
theswamp,theydressedtheirwoundswiththechrismoffaith
andhope,shouting:God!Helpusandgiveusstrengthto
marchonforward!Thesepeoplelivedanexperiencewhono
otherpeopleinthisworldeverhad.Youarenotdefeatedwhen
youwerebroughtdowntotheground,butonlythenwhenyou
gaveuptheght.Youaredefeatedonlywhenyourphysicaland
spiritualstrengthcannothelpyouanymore.Alegionnaireisonly
a aidofGodandthismoment.
Broughtdowntotheearth,withourbodiestornapartby
wounds,spaton,humiliated,weraisedourheadsupwhenthe
enemythoughthehaddestroyedus.Stronger,moreba le
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hardened,morereadytoght,readytotakeonotherordeals,
whichtheenemywasusingtobringusdown,againusingmany
othermethods.
Theydefeatedcrippledandhelplessbodies,astheprolonged
sueringwasmorethanourlimitedstrengthcouldendure.
Satansservantsweresurethatusingthephysicaltorturecankill
thesoulaswell,buttheywerewrong.Thesoulisundying,
becausethisishowGodcreatedit.So,thesoulsofallwhopassed
throughtheswampofdesperationandwerekilled,metwithus,
thecrippled,thewounded,embracingus omupstairs, om
Heaven.Inthisba le,featuringdeserters,traitorsandcowards,
theoneskilledandthosewhowentmadbecauseoftheordeals
endured,thosewhodidntgiveuptheghtwipedthemselvesof
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themudand,withtheirbodiesba lescarred,buttheirsouls
washedandpuried,lookedoncemoretowardthewallsof
Troy.
Ourmartyrsandourdeaddidnthavegraves,theywerent
buriedincemeterieswheretheirsurvivors,wherethegenerations
oftomorrowcouldsayaprayerintheirmemory.
Satansservantswantedtoforevererasetheireverytrace,because
theycouldntkilltheirsouls.Butwe,whowereyoung
legionnairesbackthen,didntgiveupthedreamandare
standingabove,ontheplaceshistoryputuson,givingadviceto
thecominggenerations.Onlytheyshallbelieveus,becausethey
werenttemptedbythespiritoftheunclean.Andtheywillputoil
onourbodiestornapartinpersecutionsandinterrogations,
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campsandprisons,intheabhorrentdenouncements:onlythey
willunderstandwhyweweresohatedbyourenemies.Theywont
knowwhereourgravesarebuttheywillstillhearthemysterious
voiceofsomanypassionsthisabusedandpersecutednationhas
endured.
Theywilllightsacricialcandlesin ontoftheholyshrinesfor
thepeaceofallourdead.
Thecleanhonestsoulsofayoungpeoplewhodidntknowthe
clayofsinandcorruption,hatredandlustforpolitics,lustfor
power,willrememberus.Thesecleansoulswillbeanimatedbya
holyideal,loveforGod,fortheirneighborandtheirkind.And
Notthelustful,thecowards,thetraitors,notthosedrivenby
sensualdesires,northosewhosoldtheirsoulstosatanortoany
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occultwillhavetherighttospeakinthenationsnameandlead
it.
ThereisnosacriceofinnocentbloodTheGodofLoveand
Justicewontremember.Hewillchoosefearlessmen omamong
ourkindwhowillghtusingtheword,evokingtofuture
generationsthehundredsofthousandsofsacrices,soa
countryasholyasthesunintheskycanbebuiltonthem.Our
weaponshallbethewordandusingitwewillrelayour
aspirationsandpassionstothosewhowillcomeaerus.
*
Oneday,atthestartofDecember1950,aerthehominywas
served,thedooropenedand,likeaMesto,Turcanutheevil
geniusenteredtheroom.Everyoneintheroomandespecially
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thosewhoheardofhimorknewhim,remainedstunned.They
sensedwhyhehadcome,seeingthathe,whowasapolitical
prisoner,justlikethem,wasenabledtoenterallbyhimselfinside
theroom,unaccompaniedbyanocialperson.
Turcanulookedaroundtheroomlikeanexecutionerwhowas
choosinghisvictimand,stoppedin ontofMagirescuand
Pavaloaia,andaskedthemwhereCojocaruis.He
opportunisticallynoticedmeaswell,withalookthatterriedme,
threateningmeashisteethgnashed:WithyouIhavea
reckoning,andheurgedustogetoutside.Seeingthisorder,the
onesinsidetheroomwerecompletelyconfused,not
understandinghowcananotherpoliticalprisonerorderthe

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otherpoliticalprisonerstogetoutonsuchamartialtone.Also
theycouldntunderstandwhyweweresubmi inglikelambs.
Wegotoutonthecorridorandsawtherewasnooneoutsidebut
usandTurcanu.Theguardsseemedtohavevanished.Inan
hoarse,executionersvoiceheaddressedus:Startingtoday,the
denouncementsforthebanditsinthisroomwillbegin.Thenhe
rushedatmelikearabidwolf,grabbedmebymyneck,slammed
meagainstthewall,raisedmebackupagainandsqueezedmy
neckstoppingmybreath,saying:Youbandit,canbe
rehabilitatedifyoushowproofofloyaltyandbecomepartofthe
actionwhichwilltakeplaceinsidethisroom.Addressingtothe
othersthree,hetoldthemtocomealongwiththeoneswho

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adheredtohisplanofaction,andtosilenceanybanditinside
thisroom.
Wheredidyouseeinthisworldthatapoliticalprisoncanbe
administeredbyapoliticalprisonerwhoownsthelivesofthe
otherpoliticalprisoners?Whocouldunderstandandevenadmit
tothisfact?
Turcanuresumed:Youwillhitwithnomercyleandright,
togetherwiththoseIwillbring,sonobanditcangetupagain.
WhenIheardtheseorders,Iwassoscared,asifIwastheone
beingbeheadedbytheexecutioner.AndIshouteddeepinside
mysoul:Godhavemercyonmeandteachmewhattodo!The
answerwasshort:Dowhatyouwant.

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Ithenenteredbackintotheroom.Mycomrades,seeingme
amongthefour,werecompletelyconfused,notunderstanding
thatweweretorturedbefore.Aerthedenouncementsended,
theytoldmethatinthedayspriortothedenouncementsthey
believedTurcanuwilldothereeducationswithnoviolenceand
onlytothosewhowishedforthem.Totheirsurprisethough,
Bogdanoviciwasmissing,thereeducationinitiatoratSuceava.
Oh,Poorfellows!Theydidntsuspect,notevenathoughtcrossed
theirmindsthatinafewminutestheywillbemoweddownby
theterrorstormofhatred,ofliesanddistrust.
Inthetimeyousmokeacigare e,Turcanuentersalongwitha
dozenofbullies,some15,ofwhomIdidntrecognizeanyone.But
theywereallfa enedlikereadyforsacriceandheldclubsand
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oxvalvesintheirhands.Turcanugavethemthesignal:Get
them,nomercy!
ThatmomentIwassi ingatthebunktothelesideofthedoor
nearthewall,andin ontofmewasGeluGheorgiu,whowas
deartomebecauseofhiskindnessandhisperfecta ire.At
Turcanussignal,IgotnearGeluandtoldhimtogetonthebunk
andIwillgetoverhim,whisperingtoshoutashardashecan,
whileImassagedhimonhisbellyandchest.Geluunderstood,
lookedatmeandwhispered:Isthishowitsdone?andI
replied:Itsnotit,youwillseehowitis,shoutashardasyoucan
fornow.
GeluGheorghiustartedthemasqueradeandwaslyingonhis
sideonthebunksohisfacecouldntbeseen,becausehewasthe
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onlyonewhodidnthaveabloatedandbloodyface.When
Turcanugavethematadorstheordertoleavetheroom,
aerwards,whenwelookedaroundtheroomwewerehorried
becauseofwhatwewereseeing:crackedskulls,bloatedfacesfull
ofblood,sighsandgroansofpain.
ThemomentIwaswaitingtodieforhadcomeandpassed,butI
couldntforeseetheconclusion.
Turcanu,withalistinhishand,ofcoursegiventohimby
MagirescuandPavaloaia,yelledashardashecouldthateach
banditwhoheardhisnametocomesitonthebunk.Gelu
Gheorghiu,whohadbeenpartofObrejasgroup,wascalledthe
second,probablyinregardtomyfault.WhenTurcanulookedat
Geluandsawhewasnthurtliketheothers,heaskedGeluwho
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wassupposedtotakecareofhim.Hearingmynamepronounced
byGelu,Turcanustretchedaclubtomeandordered:Soyou,
bandit,tickledyourcomrade.Letsseeyounow,howyoustroke
thebanditwhomyouspared,withthisclub.
Itooktheclubinmyhandand,withacouragewhichwasnt
mine,whichcame omanotherworld,IchallengedTurcanu,
sayingIcannothit,becauseithurtsmetodoit.Turcanutookthe
club ommyhands,stretchedtheclubtoGheorghiuandtold
himtobeatmewithit.
Gheorghiu,agoodnaturedman,whoIdontbelieveeverhurt
someone,answeredTurcanuwithacouragewhichquakedthe
wholeroom:Iamagainstviolence,Ididnthitanyoneinmylife
andIwonthit omnowoneither,andnoonecanjudgeme
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becauseIdontwanttohitmyfellowman.Gelulivestodayand
cana esttothat.
HegraduatedthehyearintheBucharestPolytechnics.Hewas
borninConstantaand,beingorphanedofhismother,hewas
raisedbyhisfather.Hewasoneofthemostshiningandkind
guresevenwithallthehumiliationsandtortureshepassed
through.Duringthemosthorrictortures,hisfaceradiated
kindnessandmercy,seeinghiscomradestortured.
IwasconvincedthatTurcanuwhosawmanyothersrefusing
totorturetheircomradesandcolleagues,someofthem
payingwiththeirlives,someremainingcrippled,wontsit
withhisarmscrossedthistimeeither.

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Andindeed,Turcanubeganhi ingGelueverywhere,asif
hewashi ingasackofnutsandthen,tossinghisclub
away,hedisguredGeluwithhissts.Whenhestopped,
Geluwasntmovinganymore.HethenorderedMagirescu
andPavaloaiatothrowhimonthebunknearReus.
Hethenrushedatmelikeaneagle,threwmeonthebunk
whereMagirescuwassi ingandorderedthetwotobeatme
becauseheistired.Then,mybuddiesMagirescuand
Pavaloaiagavemea iendlylesson,sonothingcould
distinguishme omGeluandtheotherswhowerebeaten,
andbecausemywounds omroomno.2werehealedtoo.
Aertheyservedmethisgenerousbeating,theythrewme
onthebunknearGelu.
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Thissceneinuencedtheconscienceofmy40comradesso
muchthatTurcanucouldntevenrecruitonebullysohecan
usehimagainsttheothers.FewmomentsinmylifewhenI
feltsoclosetomyfellowman.Theclubsseemedeasierto
endure.Turcanuinstitutedaerwardstheactionand
torturecommi eeforthedenouncementsinsidetheroom,
throughnomination.
Ididntrecognizeanyoneofthesebullieswhowerepartof
thetortures,becauseIcouldntfocusonthemorbecauseI
wasworriedaboutwhatwasgoingtohappenwithme.
Whocouldimagine,eveninhisdreams,havingahealthy
mind,discernmentandcommonsense,thatinaprisonlike
Pitesti,conceivedtopreservethebestsecrecy,theinmatesof
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allthepeoplehadthekeystoallthecells,tolockandunlock
astheywished,tomovetheprisoners omonecellto
anotherandtohavelifeanddeathrightsuponthem?And
thosepeoplewhoweretorturedinbasementroomno.3,as
wellasinalltheotherroomsinthebasementandthe
groundoor,allofthemlocatedinsidethetailoftheT,
theyshouldhavebeenhospitalized.Buttheywerenteven
allowedtopresstheirwoundswithpadssoakedincold
waterorcleanthebloodontheirwounds.Eventheoneswho
werekilledstoodatTurcanusdisposition,hedoingwith
theirdeadbodieswhathepleased.
Beforetheelectionofthetorturecommi eeinbasement
roomno.3,onTurcanusfaceyoucouldseethathelostthat
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li lewhichwasstilllehumaninsidehim.Hewas
possessed,Godknowsbyhowmanydemons.Howelse
couldhebeatandtortureinnocentpeople,whoneverdid
himanyharmandwhoontopofitallweretormentedby
starvationandcold,withnomeansofdefending
themselves.ButIdidntseeonlyoneyoungmankilledat
Pitesti.Thereweredozens,andonlyoftheoneswhoare
borninverywidetimespans,onlythebest.
OncethebunkswereoccupiedintheorderthatTurcanu
announced,wecouldinstantlytellthatthisorderwasnt
random.Thesixyoungnonlegionnairesinsidetheroom
wereseatedtogether.Theinformerscouldnttellmewhereto
beseated,becausetheydidntknowbeforehandhowIwill
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reactatmydenouncement.SoTurcanuseatedmeinthe
thirdplaceintherow,nearGelu.
IntheheadoftherowstoodGhitaReus,ayoungmanwith
anangeliclook,abeautifulfaceandsoul,anexceptional
kindnessandmorality,hehadbeenafacultycolleagueof
TurcanuandBogdanovici;hewasamongtherstwhostood
uptothem.Moreover,heconvincedmanyothersnottobe
partofthereeducationidea.Hesensed omthestartthat
Turcanuandhisacolyteswereonlyblindtoolsinthehands
ofthecommunistregime.Turcanuknewthisandhated
Reusguts.NotlongbeforeourtransfertoGherla,Reuswas
takenoutoftheroomandneverheard omagain,norin

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prisonoraermyrelease.ProbablyTurcanubeathimto
death.
WhatcaughtmyeyewasthatbesideTurcanustoodayoung
manalmostthesamestatureandrobustnessashis,who
hadalookthatspreadterror,hislipswererolledoutwards
andhadthefaceofanexecutioner.Turcanuhadamore
humanelooksometimes,butthisa ributewasmissing
completelyinthisonescase.Turcanupresentedhimacross
theroomsayinghisnameisZaharia.Turcanutoldabout
his iendthatoncehecame omTimisoaratoPitestihe
switchedontohissidewithoutbeingslappedonceandhe
declaredinfavorofthemethodsused,tellingin ontof
Turcanuthatheisntalegionnaire.
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LikeIsaid,Iwillonlytalkabouttheyounglegionnaires.So
tonotoendorhurtanyotherpoliticalview,beinginfavor
ofarighttospeak,arighttofaithanda itude,Iwill
abstain ommanycomments.AlthoughIcouldaccuseand
a ackZahariaspoliticalviews,Irepeat,Iwont.Inotice
howeverthatalotofcommunistsanddemocratsofall
sorts,Christiandemocratsandevenpeople omother
politicalgroupsorparties,weregoinghandinhandand
embracedeachotherwhentheyhadtopersecuteand
demeanthelegionnairesandTheLegionnaireMovement.
BacktoZahariathough.Iwouldnthavebroughthimtothis
discussionifhewouldnthavesaidheisntalegionnaire,if
hewouldnthavekilledIonicaPintiliewithhisownhands,if
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hewouldnthavebeentheleaderofthetorturecommi ee
andifhewouldnthavedonethethingshedidin ontof
the40legionnaireyoungmenandthe6youngnon
legionnaires omthebasementroomno.3.InthiscaseI
wouldhavebeenaccusedbylegionnairesandnon
legionnaireswhosueredandarestillalivethatIamtrying
tohidehowtheyhavebeentorturedbyZahariafor11
months,aswellasthemethodswhichheappliedwhenhe
wasordered.
SoTurcanupresentedZahariaasbeingtheleaderofthe
actionandtorturecommi ee,aidedbyEugenMagirescu
andCostachePavaloaia,whohadbeenlegionnaires.At

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Turcanusorder,Zahariareservedabunkforhimselftothe
lesideofthedoor,facingthedooropening,nearthewall.
Beforethedenouncementsbegan,thatbunkcould
accommodatesixpersonsandnowitwasonlyoccupiedby
three.Thebunkunderthewindowsstretchedcontinuously,
omoneroomwalltoanothertheentirelengthoftheroom.
Intotheright,asthedooropened,therewasanotherbunk
where,usuallyaccommodated14people.Inthemiddleof
theroomtherewasemptyspaceof1.5meterswide,andin
theendoftheroomtowardstherightsideofthedoor,there
wasthechamberpotforyourphysiologicalneeds;theone
fordrinkingwaterstoodintheoppositeside.

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THE STORIES OF GHITA ANDRISAN

IfGhitaAndrisanwouldbehereIwouldapologizetohim,
becauseIdidntmentionhimearlier.IdidntdoitbecauseI
thinkli leofhim,butjustbecauseIforgotto.Heremains
inthememoryofthosewhomethimasahero,forhis
behaviorduringthedenouncements.
Hewasthesonofapeasant, omaroundBucovinas
monasteries,wheretheorthodoxspiritandthesmellofpine
treesprevails.
Andrisanwasatrueman.StudentoftheLawSchoolinIasi,
hehadbeenacolleaguewithTurcanu,butindetermined
oppositionwithhim,hearingwhathehadbeendoingat
Suceava.
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Afearlesswarrior,withfaithinGod,inhisnationandThe
Legionwhichheservedwithdevotionandcourage.Aclever
youngmanwhocarriedinhimthewisdomandcommon
senseofStefantheGreatsmountainmen.Acharacter
withoutdevilryandhiddenplaces.Agoodnaturedman,
youcouldreadthehonestyoungmanssmileonhisface,in
whosehearttherewasnoroomforhatredandscorn.
Iknewhimwell,beforethedenouncementsbeganin
basementroomno.3;Igrewfondofhimandesteemedhim
forhismodestyandcommonsense.Duringthe
denouncements,hewasoneofthosewhodidnthitanyone,
andwhenhesawanyonebeinghitoreventheonewhohit,
histearsfell.
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Andbecauseanyonehasadefect,becauseifhedidnthave
hewouldbeanangelandnotaman,GhitaAndrisanhad
hisdefecttoo:helovedtotellstories.Gone omhisrural
hometoarenownedhighschool,EudoxiuHurmuzache,
atRadauti,hisprofessorshavingstudiedinViena,hehad
tokeepupwiththebestofhisclassmates.
Ghitahadliterarytalent,hereadalotandhadaknackfor
tellingstories;inafewwords,hewasaverygiedyoung
man.Becausehewantedtobeapersonality,tomakean
impressiononhiscolleagues,hestartedtotellsomany
storiesthatyoucouldntknowifwhathesaidwasfactor
ction.Heknewafewforeignlanguageswell,especiallythe

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classicones.Hewasge ingreadytobealawyersayingthat
hisgioftellingstorieshaditsusesinadvocacy.
Hemayhavebeenrightthattellingstorieswasusefulinhis
profession,butinPitestihegotintroublebecauseofthis.
GhitaevenhadTurcanuconfusedand,becauseofthishe
gottobeaheroofthedenouncements.
Eversincehisarrestuntilthedenouncementsstarted,Ghita
toldhiscellmatesallkindsofstories,everyonemore
fantasticthantheother.Evenwithhisgoodmemoryhe
couldnttellwhatwasfactorctionanymoreeither.
Icanseehimevennowpleading.Hehadtheskillsofavery
talentedlawyer.Cultivated,readalot,goodorator,withhis
faceofagoodman,impressedalltheonesinsidetheroom
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withthequantityofinformationhepossessed,even
MagirescuwhohadbeenhiscolleagueinLawSchool.His
storiesweresologicalandtoldwithsuchtalent,thatyou
couldnttellifheinventedthemornot.
Aerhisstatementsinsidetheroom,hewastakentothe4th
hospitalroom,whereheputtheminwriting,andthis
writinglasteduntilFebruary.Aerwards,oneday,Turcanu
appearedintheroom,holdingsomepapersinhishandand
havingthefaceofanenragedbull.
HewentstraighttoAndrisan,whowasthethirdsi ingnext
tome,signaledhimtocometohim,grabbedhimbyhis
collar,tookhimovertothecommi eesbunkandaddressed
Zaharia:
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Hey!Didyouknowthateverythingthatthisbandit
declaredisnottrue?
WithaninnocentlookandveryupsetbyTurcanus
statement,Andrisanaskedhimwhatpartofhisstatement
wasnttrue.
Turcanu,inamed:
Whatdoyoumeanyoubandit?!Ibeatalltheseyoudeclare
heretoapulpandcametomebearingwitnessesthatyou
didnttellthemanythinglikethisandtheydidnthearthese
things omyoueither.Regardingyouractivitiesasabandit
legionnaire,youstatedthatallofBucovinawaslegionnaire
and,ifyouhadknownmyfather,youwouldhavedeclared

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himalegionnairecommanderalso.Whatpartofthisis
true?
Likeaninnocentyounglady,GhitarepliedtoTurcanu:
EverythingIstatedistrue.
Howisthistrue?Iwillkillyou.Comewithme.
Hewentwithhimtothe4thhospitalroomandwas
con ontedwithothercomradeswhosharedthecellwith
himatSuceavaandPitesti.These,crippledandbeatentoa
pulp,didntadmitGhitawastellingthetruthandTurcanu
decidedintheirfavor,beingnowcertainthatGhitahad
beentellingstories.
Aerwadshewasbroughtbackintotheroomand
con ontedwithhisLawSchoolcolleagues.There,Ghita
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Reus,hiscolleagueinLawSchool,toldhimtobecareful
aboutwhatheisdeclaringbecausemanythingswri enin
hisstatementarenttrue.AsfarasMagirescuisconcerned,
withallhisintelligence,notevenhesensedthedierence
betweenfactorctioninGhitasstories.
Aerwards,Ghitawascon ontedwiththeinstrumentsof
torture,whichwerenowveryreal.Asaresult,Ghitalied
downseveraldaysonthebunk,withhismemoryalteredby
imagination,notknowingwhatwasrealorimaginaryinhis
life.
Whatremainedinourmemory,theonesinsidebasement
roomno.3,wasGhitasexpression:Thisisabeard,thisis
notabeard.Aerwards,herewroteallhisstatement om
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thestart.Andwhenhestatedsomething,hewasaskedby
theonesinthecommi ee:isthisabeardornot?Andhe
toldthetruth.
Aseverysituationinthisworldhasagetawaydoor,
dependingontheindividualifhesensesitornot,Ghita
Andrisansdefectwasnotonlyagetawaydoor,butagateof
salvation!Because,allthisbeardcircusdeterminedTurcanu
tobesickofhimandleavehimtohisfairytales.
SoAndrisanremainedhonorableandanobjectofenvy
amongus.Hisnaturesavedhimduringthe
denouncements.
Itispossiblethateverythinghedeclaredtobenothingbuta
fairytalespawnedbyhisimmenseimagination,togetoutof
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thetorturesandsavetheonesonlyheknewabout,and
didntwanttobetray.Hedidntwanttobecomeabullyfor
thedenouncementseither,butonlytopassthroughan
immoralsituationuncompromised.Aermyrelease om
prisonInevergottoseehimagainandaskhimwhatwas
trueornot,becauseofthepersecution,andhealsolivedfar
away omme,inBucovina.
Manyofusmadeallkindsofplanstoescapethetortures,
declaringallsortsofthings,knownorunknown.ButGhitas
a itude,alongwithitsconsequences,restrainedand
broughtbackmanytoreality.
TheoneswhotriedtodoitlikeGhitawerecaughtandwere
punishedmuchharder.
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MAGLAVIT

ThiswasthenicknameBadiaUngureanuhadwhenwerst
methim,wetheonesarrestedandincarceratedatSuceava
andbroughtthentoPitestiontheforcedlaborsectionsand,
especially,theonesinbasementroomno.3.
Hegothisnicknamebecause,between19351936hesetout
onfoot omIasiallthewaytosouthernOltenia,inthe
villageMaglavit,toseethemiracleofthatshepherd,
PetracheLupu.
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VasileUngureanuhadbeenborninTarguNeamt,achurch
singerordeaconasthefolkssaidinthoseparts.Hewas
arrestedinTalpalariChurchinIasi,wherefatherTatulea
wastheparishpriest,anoutstandinglegionnaireanda
priestwithexceptionalmorala ire,greattheologianand
composer.Inhischurch,wherehehadawonderfulchoir,all
theelite omIasicame.Hewasarrestedtooin1948and
sentencedtohardyearsinprison.
Maglavithadbeentothewar,andaerwards,havinga
talentinmusic,wenttostudyatTheConservatoryinIasi,
wherefatherTatuleawasoneofhisteachers.Hewas
arrestedin1948,attheageof46,andsentencedto15years
offorcedlabor,aerhedbeenthroughaverycruel
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interrogationinSuceava.Maglavitdeclaredheisastudent
inordertobeputinPitesti,althoughhewaspartofThe
Wanderers52organization.Hedidthissohecouldbe,ashe
putit,amongthelads.Beingraisedintheorthodoxspirit
ofthemonasteriesintheregionofNeamt,wherehishome
villagewas,hewasprofoundlyChristian,alifewhichcould
havebeenseenasamodel.
Beingagoodandpeacefulman,whodidntagreewith
violence,thewarwithallitsatrocitiesterriedhim.In
basementroomno.3,hewaspartofPintiliesgroupand
impressedwithhismeeknessandkindness,butespecially
withhismysticallifewhichmovedeveryoneinsidetheroom.
Becauseofhiswarmsoulwhichcoveredeveryyoungman

52

AliatedorpartofTheLegionnaireCorps

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whostoodnearhim,Igrewfondofbadea53Vasileaswell,
seeinginhimthemodelandlifeoftheeasternholyfathers.
Becausehewaspartofthelegionnairemeetingsleadby
Pintilieandtheinitiatorofthemysticalcircle,badia
UngureanubecamethetargetinZahariastortures.He
sueredthetortureslikeamartyr,butseeingthetortured
youngmenmadehimcry.Ateachstrikeofthatclubhe
involuntarilyshivered,asifhewastheonebeinghit.
Theonlyreasonhewasntmurderedinsidetheroomis
Magirescu,whogreatlyrespectedhim.Beingolderthanus
hecouldhavebeenafathertoushewasobeyed,
esteemedandlovedsomuch,thatIsawsomepeopleonthe
bunkscryingwhenhewastortured.

53

AcommonRomanianexpressionusuallyaddressedtooldermen,foroldermen

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Hedidnthitanyonethough,andbecauseofhim,
Magirescudidnthiteitherandtoldhimthatallofthis
mysticismhadmadehimmad.
BadiaUngureanuhadtheexpressionofabyzantinesaint,
thekindyoucanseeontheeasterniconographyandwas
oneofthefewcomradesImetinprisonwhofastedtotally
onWednesdaysandFridays,givinghisfoodtoothers.
Becauseofthis,hewasoneofthefewasceticcomrades
ValeriuGafencuandthelawyerTrifaninBrasovbeingthe
exceptionwhoIsawwithmyowneyesenduringhunger
withoutanyproblems.
Forthese,thelifeonearthhadlessimportance,theywere
oatinginotherspheres.HowcanInotbelievethelivesof
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thosesaintsandeasternasceticmartyrsthen,whenIsaw
myowncomradesusingtheirmodelasalife?
TheEasterof1951wascomingnear,and,oneevening,seeing
badiaVasilecrying,someoneaskedhimwhyheiscrying.
Hisanswerwassimple:Becausemybrotherssuer.He
wasreferringtothosewhohadbeentortured.Zaharia,
enraged,brutallyintervened:
Howso,youmysticalbandit,thesearebrotherstoyou,not
bandits?WithChristiansimplicity,Ungureanureplied:
Formetheyarenotbandits,becausetheydidntsteal
anything ommeandtheydidnthurtmeatall.
Whatdoyoumeantheydidntbeatyou?
Theydidnt,Ungureanuanswered.
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Zaharia,enraged,yelledathim:
Tellmeaboutanotherexperiencedmysticlikeyourself
then,whatdoyouthinkaboutthebanditBordeianu?
EveryoneinsidetheroomwereexpectingUngureanutodo
aportraitdenouncementstyle.Instead,hereplied:
BrotherBordeianuisameekman.
Thiswasthesimplestcharacterizationsomeonehasever
madeforme.Evennow,whenIputthesememoriesdown
onpaper,hiswordsringinsidemyears.
Enragedeventothepointofmadness,Zahariastormedon
thepoorman,trampledonhimandbeathiminsuchaway,
thatyoudidntknowifhewashumanorableedingpileof
eshanymore.
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THE DENIAL

Thecontentofthisnotionwasandisverycontroversialeven
inthewritingsoftheholyfathers,onthetimeofthe
Christianpersecutions.Theyounglegionnairesdenialof
theirLegionnaireMovementatPitestiembracedmuchmore
complexformsthanthedenialdoneinnormallife
circumstances.
Iamexplainingthedenouncementsmystically.
We,theoneswhowentthroughthedenouncementsin
PitestiandGherlawillbeaccusedofbeingcowardsperhaps,

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byourcomrades,andourenemieswillhaveareasonof
pointingtheirngersatusforwhatwevedone.
Wewillrstaddressananswertoourcomradeswhoare
stillalive,aswellastothosewhoshallcomeaerus.
Yes!Wewereweakandhelplessandweconfess.Butnotout
ofthefearofdeath,deathwhichwewishedtocomeevery
second,but omthedreadoflosingourminds,likePintilie,
Nedelcu,Soltuz,IonescuandothersLetthosewhoare
accusingusliveinthisterroranddreadinthesame
circumstancesandthenweshalltalkagain.
Butthoseofuswhoweremurdered,redeemedour
weaknessesthroughtheirsacrice.TheLegionwilllivebyits
martyrs,heroesandwarriors.Wewishedwecoulddieevery
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second,withouthavingthepossibilitytodieorkillourselves.
Thepurposeofthistorture,itsessence,wasnttokillus,
becausethiscrimecouldhavebeenconsideredgenocide,
buttomakeusbecomenotoriouskillersandinformers.The
medicsinnaziconcentrationcampsweremorehumaneina
way,allowingthepatientstodie,butthecommunist
medicsintheprisonsmedicaloces,agentsoftheSecurity
andcompetinginmurderssidebysidewithTurcanu,
stoppedit,inordertomakethepainevenmorepainful.
Toourenemieswhopersecutedus,whentheywillremindus
insarcasmthatDeath,onlythedeathoflegionnairesisthe
mostdearweddingofallweddingstouswewillreplywith
aquestion:whathavetheybeendoingduringthe
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communistregimeinRomania?Weknowverywellwhat
theyhavebeendoing,soweaskthem:wherearetheir
heroesandmartyrs?Buttheirabetmenttosomanycrimes?
Iftheywouldhavebeentorturedwithhundredsofclubson
theirbodies,whatwouldhavebecomeofthem?
Wearenotasking ompeopleforgiveness,neither
understanding,becausepityhaslostitsuses.Itissoeasyto
accuseotherswhennooneeverputangeronyou!
Fivemonthsofmethodicallyappliedtortureaccordingto
plan,hadpassed.Themysteriousinterrogatoron26thof
Octoberwarnedusthathewilldriveusintothemadnessof
despairwhenhetoldme:Evenifyouhavebeenmadeof
reinforcedconcreteyoubandits,wewillstillsoenyou.
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Aerthesevemonthsofunimaginabletortures,theyhad
soenedus,butnotall.
WhentheinterrogatoraskedmeifIamalegionnaire
anymore,IrepliedthatIcannotbeotherwisebecausethisis
whatIwassentencedfor.Hecontinued,tellingmethatone
dayImaysaythatIamnotalegionnaireanymore.
Andtheyreachedtheirgoal,butnotwiththeonesdriven
madorkilled,becausethesecontinuedtoconfesstheirfaith
inGodandLegion.
Ourdenialwastheconsequenceofcontinuousunbearable
tortures.Weaskedourselvesifthisdenialwasnothingbuta
lie,beingformallydone.TheLawMakermustgivethis
answer.Weaskedourselvesagainifourdenialofthe
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LegionnaireMovementhurtanyone?Isitpossiblewehurt
ourselvesorothers?Maybeboth.Onlythe eearmation
isvalid,unrestrainedbyphysicalormoralcoercion.We
deniedtheLegionnaireMovementnotbecausewewere
a aidtodie,butbecausethesetorturesowedcontinuously
andwewerea aidweregoingtoloseourminds.Isnot
deathpreferableinsteadofmadnessforamaninhisright
mind?IfsomeoneneedstoverifythatwhatIsayistrue,visit
aninsaneasylum.
ThiswasourstateofmindbackthenwhenZahariaasked
eachofusifwearestilllegionnaires.
Ourcolleagueswhowerentlegionnairesweregrouped
togetheronthebunknearthedoorintheright.
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GhitaReuswastherstonequestioned.Christianand
legionnairedeepdowninsidehissoul,ayoungmanwith
irreproachablea itude,hehadbeentorturedextraby
Turcanusorder,ashewasoneofhismostdireadversaries.
ToZahariasquestion,Reusreplied:
Iwasarrested,trialedandsentencedforforbidden
legionnaireactivity.ThiswasthestatementIwroteand
signedattheinterrogation.IntheCriminalLawhowever,
thereisnotasinglearticlea estingyoucanbeconvictedfor
legionnaireactivity.Fromajudicialstandpoint,wewere
convictedinbaseofarticle209CriminalLaw,forthecrime
ofconspiringagainstsocialorder.

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So,ifIwasntconvictedasalegionnaire,thenhowcome
youaskmeifIamalegionnaireornotanymore, omthe
Lawspointofview?Iwonder,doesthecommunistregime
considermetobelegionnaireornot?Andifitstill
considersmetobealegionnaire,formylegionnaireactivity,
thenthereisnolawwhichgivestherighttotheauthorities
tocoercemenotbealegionnaireanymore.Isntthisthe
truth?If,accordingtothePenalCode,Iamnota
legionnaire,thenwhyamIforcedtodenywhatIamnot?
IforonepaidforwhatIvedone,legionnaireorno
legionnaire.WhatIamorIamnotisama erofconscience
andnooneinthisworldcanmakemedenymyown
conscience.ConscienceisstrictlypersonalandonlyIamthe
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masteroveritsprivacy.FromthecommunistpointofviewI
canonlybetrialedandsentencedwhenIvoicemyopinions
orfaithpublicly,writingthatIamagainstcommunism.
Thereisnolawinthisworldwhichcanmakemeexteriorize
mythoughtsandtheprivacyofmyconscience.
AerReusexposure,Magirescu,whohadnishedLaw
School,didntsayaword.Inhisintimacyheagreedwith
Reus;probablyhetoldTurcanuthesamething.
Theexposuredisconcertedeveryoneintheroom,even
Zaharia,thechiefofthetorturecommi ee.Hewrotedown
whatReussaidinordertoinformTurcanu.

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Tudosesturnfollowed,whosaidhedidntreally
contemplatedthisissuebefore,ifheisalegionnaireornot,
because,asReussaidbefore,thisconcernstheconscience.
ThethirdwasGeluGheorghiuwho,withhisgoodman
a itude,interpretingeverythingthroughthemoralpointof
view,answeredZaharia:
IwonderifIwaseveralegionnaire,because ommypoint
ofview,tobesomethingmeanstoidentifyyourselfwiththat
whichyousayyouare.Inconclusion,Iwonder,didIever
identifymyselfwiththeLegionnaireMovement?
CorneliuCodeanuwastherstwhoidentiedhimselfwith
whathesaidhewasandhewasassassinated.Motaand
Marinalsoidentiedwithwhattheysaidtheywereandthey
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diedtoo.Allthelegionnairemartyrsidentiedthemselves
withthatwhichtheysaidtheywereandwereassassinated.
Inthisroomthereweretwolegionnaires,Pintilie,whom
youhavekilledandNedelcu,whowentinsane.AndI,ifI
hadthechance,Iwouldhavekilledmyself(IrealizenowI
wouldhavebeenacowarddoingso),andnowIambeing
askedifIamalegionnaireornotanymore.
Forinstance:Ilovedaverybeautifulgirl,Ilovedherwith
allmyheart,butatsomepoint,IhadtotellherIwont
marryheranymore.Thegirlasksforexplanations,butwhat
explanationscanIgivetoher,becausemydecision
concerningherremainsunchanged?

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Icannotgiveexplanations,becausesomeoneistorturing
mewiththeknut,and,withoutmyconsent,coercesmeto
tellhimwhathewantstohearandnotwhatIreallyfeel.So,
gentlemen,whatyouareaskingforisonlyaformalact,
becauseinsidemyconscienceyoucanneverprotrude.And
youareinterestedonlyinformalactsandifthatswhatyou
want,youwillgetwhatyouwantbecauseofthetorturesyou
inictandwillinictonus.Butthisdoesntcorrespondto
reality,becausenoma erhowmuchwedenyThe
LegionnaireMovement,wewillstillbeconsidered
legionnaires.
HoweverIshallansweryourquestion,butallowmesome
timetothink.
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GeluGheorghiusarmationsgavemanyofusthe
possibilitytoanswerthesame.AerGeluGheorgiumyturn
came.Thecomradesintheroomwerentfamiliarizedwith
thetorturesinroomno.2ongroundoorandwerentthere
whenIdeniedTheLegionnaireMovement.
ButIwasconvincedthat,aerallthetorturesIendured
andwouldhavetoendureagain,meandmycomrades,
be erthangoinginsane,wouldhavetoformallydenythe
LegionnaireMovement.
So,IansweredthatIdidntthinktheissueandIwouldhave
toreectmoreonit,becauseitisama erofconscience,
andonecouldntpronouncetothisstraightaway.

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ToMagirescusquestion,howmuchtimewouldIneedto
reectonthis,Igavehimamonthortwo,atwhichpoint
Zahariabrutallyintervened:Iwillmakeyoushortenthat
time.Magirescutoldhimtoleavemeinpeacefornow.
Aerus,alltheothers:Dinescu,Santimbreanu,Ciornea,
Sarbu,Ungureanu,PopescuPaul,ZelicaBerza,Grigoras,
Hutuleac,etc.theyaskedfortimetothinkaswell.
NedelcuandIonescu,whowerentlegionnaires,who
presentedsymptomsofinsanity,werentaskedathing.Of
allofus,onlyvedeclaredtheyarenotlegionnaires
anymore,andtheyweretheoneswhogotchosenbyZaharia
tostandguardduringthenights.

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Thenextdayintheevening,aerZahariapresentedthe
reporttoTurcanu,Turcanucametous.Turcanus
physiognomyisimpossibletodescribeinthesesituations.
AsheenteredtheroomhewentstraighttoReusandtold
himironically:
Mycolleague,soyoubringLawintodiscussion,isntit?In
ma ersofLaw,Icannotcontradictyou,becausewewere
colleaguesinfaculty.Butyouwillseeandfeelonyour
crimsonlegionnairehidethemethodIwillapplyonyou,to
makeyousayyouwontbealegionnaireeveragain,noteven
ifHoriaSimawasheretohangyou.
Doyouremember,whenthedenouncementsstartedwith
you,bandits,inthisroomItoldyouIwillmakeyousay
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whatyouknowanddontknowandmakeyoubehavelikeI
wantyoutobehave,doyouremember?Well,letitsinkinto
yourheadsyoubandits,thatIwillapplylovemethodson
youallusiontoGheorghiusomuchso,thatyouwont
needsomuchtimetothinkanymore,likethismystical
banditBordeianusaid.Andyouknowbandits,thatIkeep
myword,likeIkeptituntilnow.
Helookedatallofuswhoweresi ingonthebunksand,
withoutsayingmore,letheroomtogetherwithZaharia.
Thepublicstatementscontinued,intheroom,aswellasthe
wri enones,atthe4thhospitalroom.
Wewerecertainthat,aerTurcanusvisit,Zahariawillcome
withanewmethodoftorture.
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Aertheeveningmeal,Zahariacamebackenragedasa
bullanddeliveredhismusicalrepertoire.Hechosetenofus
and,alongwiththecommi ee,appliedthelawofloveto
Gheorghiu.
Then,hemadeussitinanewpositiononthebunks:
insteadofkeepingourhandsonourknees,wehadtokeep
themstraightup.Aerthebeatingwetook,wecouldbarely
move,andbecausewehadtokeepourhandsupwards,in
xedposition,theexcitementofthenervesintensiedso
muchthatitwasimpossibletobear.

THE 1951 EASTER. THE SON OF MAN


BLASPHEMED

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Theweekthatfollowedaertheseeventsremainsinour
memories.Thenewxedpositionwassohardtobear,thatI
wished,morethananytime,fordeathtocomeoran
earthquaketobringthePitestifortressdown,anditsrubble
buryusforeverunderneathit.Howwewaitedforandhow
sublimethemartyrsdeathseemedtous!However,Only
Godknewwhenthistorturewillendandhow.
TheEasterwasapproachingandIwasterriedthinking
thatwhatoccurredatChristmaswillrepeatexactlyat
Easter,butwithmanymoresatanicaspects,whichtheman
inhisrightmindcannotevenfathom.
ItwasthePalmSunday,beforethePassionWeek.

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Inthataernoon,Zahariareturned omthe4thhospital
roomandorderedanewredistributiononthebunks.
Allofasudden,itcrossedmymindthatsomethingstrange
wasbeingprepared,somethingindescribable,concerning
thePassionWeekandEaster.
Therstseatedonthebunk,accordingtotheneworder,
wasMaglavit,followedbyNedelcu,BordeianuDumitru
theauthorofthesesadmemories,PopescuPaul,Zelica
Berza,Grigoras,Hutuleac,Santimbreanu,Reus,Gheorghiu
andAndrisan.
AllthesehadbeenpartofMaglavitsgroup.WhenIsawthis
neworderandespeciallythefactthatwewereallpartofthe

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mysticalgroup,withoutrealizingit,ahorrortookcontrol
overus,andsensedsomethingwasbeingpreparedforus.
Monday,inThePassionWeek,rightaerlunch,Zaharia
returnedwithastackofpapersinhishand,somewornout
brooms,aballofthickthread,someemptycans,charcoal,
andasmallbo le.
Heputthemonourbunk,and,hemadeusbuildcrosses
outofthebroomsticks.
Oneofthecrosses,thebiggerone,wasmeantfor
Ungureanu.
IdidntguesswhatZahariawasgoingtodo.Outofthe
emptycan,hemadethecenser,andthepapershebrought
hesharedamongtheoneswhodeniedtheLegionnaire
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Moevementaswellastoto56peoplewhowerestanding
guardsince15thofJanuary.
Aerallthesehadbeenprepared,Zahariaaddressedusin
thefollowingmanner:Mysticsandtheothersinthe
roombandits,becauseyoubelieveinGodandHis
Passions,andasyouknowIdontbelieveinsuchnonsense,
andbecauseweareinThePassionWeek,youwillseewhat
passionswillyoumysticsendure!
Noteveninthemostpornographicliteratureandnoma er
whatanyonewouldtellme,Icouldneverimaginethatsome
satanicandsickmindscouldcomeupwithsuch
obscenities,toblasphemeandoendGodsMajesty,His
SainthoodandPurity.
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AsIsaidearlierwhenIwastellingabouttheChristmasof
1950,Iwontallowmyselfforthesakeoftheli leculture
andliteratureIassimilatedduringmylearningyears,and
forthesakeofthecommonsenseanddecencyofahumble
Christiantopresentbeforethereaderstheseabjections
addressedtoGod.IfIweretopronouncethemorwrite
aboutthem,Iwouldbetheadvocateofsatanandhis
servants.
Whatistheuseofdescribingthesepornographies,insults
andblasphemiesbroughttoGod?Thefaithfulwillbelieve
ourword,havingGodasaWitnessandthosewhoendured
thesetorturesinHisname.Theatheistswontbelieveus,
whoblasphemeGodanyway,withoutbeingtortured.
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FromMondayaernoontotheGoodFriday,whenthe
Lamentationsweresanginourchurches,aswellasinthe
threeEasterDays,thetenwhodeniedtheMovementplus
thosewhostoodasguardssangallthisrepertoireof
pornographies,shamelessthingsandsalaciousnesswhich
exceededallimagination,onTheLamentationsTune.
We,themystics,wereleadonourkneesthroughtheroom
foreightdays, omoneendtotheother,withUngureanu
beingourleader,asifwewereimaginingOurLords
Passions.
TheyputthecrownofthornsonUngureanu,andinthe
canstheyputcharcoal,theysprinkleditwithlampgasand

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setitonre,sowecanincensewiththecans,whilewewere
walkingonourknees,doingprostrations.
IsawUngureanucryingasneverbefore,terriedofwhat
theyforcedusdo.
Whatmademysoultrembleinthistortureofthespirit,was
mymothersimage,whomIsawin ontofmyeyes,
mournful,thewaysheexperiencedTheSaviorsWeekof
Passion.Icouldseehercrying;maybeshewasthinkingat
myordeals,althoughthepoorwomandidntknowthehellI
wasin.
Icouldalsoseeallthemothersoftheonestorturedand
terriedofbeingmadetoblasphemeGod.Ifthesemothers

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wouldhaveseenthetormentstheirsonsweresubjectedto,
manyofthemwouldhavegoneinsane.
Aereightdaysofwalkingonourknees,ourpants
ruptured,andthekneeswerebutawound.Theonlyoneof
uswhorefusedtotakepartinthissatanicritualwas
NedelcuAristide.Hewasalreadyinsaneandbrokeo om
thesuite.Hewastolerated,because,astheysaid,hedgone
outofhismind.
Attheendoftheeightdaysofsueringandhumiliation,
omthemorninguntiltheevening,oursoulstornapart,
sickofourselves,ofourhelplessnessandweakness,wewere
imploringtheHeaventotakeusaway.

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Becausewehadbeenwalkingonthecement,ourkneeswere
allabloodywoundand,whenwetouchedtheooritwas
likewesteppedonneedles.But,besidethephysicalwounds,
thisspiritualdegradationleevendeeperwoundsinour
soulsandconscience.
Iwasthinkingterriedinthosemomentsifwewouldhave
tocelebrateinthesamewayotherholidaysoftheBirthand
ResurrectionofJesusChrist,whileourparents,brothers,
sistersand iendswilllivetheJoyoftruecelebration.
Thesekindsoforgiesdidntoccuronlyinbasementroom
no.3,butinalltheotherroomsaswell,astheoneswho
experiencedthemaswella ested,aerthedenouncements
ended.
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Hereisthenalpurposeofthecommunistreeducation:
TakingGodoutoftheheartsofpeople,collapsingtheminto
thevoid.

PITESTI(4)
THE LAST COMPULSION OF
DENIAL

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Thetortureswherewewereforcedtokeepourhands
straightup,thenthespiritualandmoralprostitutionofour
conscience,strengthenedourconvictionthatwewilleither
goinsane,eitherdenytheLegionnaireMovement.
InthetwoweeksaerEaster,whenthepublicandwri en
statementscontinuedinthe4thhospitalroom,eachofus
consultedwithourconsciencethinkingwhathewillchooseto
write.Youwouldntbeofanyusetoanyoneinsane.Ifyouwould
choosetodeny,youinsultedtheMovement,havingonemore
chancetokeepyourmindsane.
Therewasoneotherquestion:aerallwehadseenand
lived,convincedthatnoteveninahundredyearswill
somethingchangeinsidethecommunistcamp,becausewe
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hadbeensoldlikeperishablewaresforthesakeofselsh
interestswithouttakingthehumanrightsinto
consideration,whichweresofashionablethen,inthese
conditionswhatwasthepointoflivinganymore?
Ontheotherhand,aslonelyindividuals,howcouldwe
representtheLegionnaireMovementanymore?Whenwe
enteredthegateofthatinfernowebecamedeadtothe
Legion.Allwedidwasourdutiestotakepartinastruggle
whichwealreadylostandinwhichwebecamekneeledand
tortured.Sowhatdiditma erifwedeniedtheLegionnaire
Movementornotatthispoint?Thedenyleadstototal
compromiseanddisdain,andnotdenying,toinsanity.This

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alternativedidntmakesenseforme.I,aswellasmy
comrades,hadreachedthenallimit,adeadend.
Themostoptimisticofustriedtosolvethisconscience
problemthewayGheorghiudid,withhisbeautifulgirl
example,thegirlwhomhelovedsomuch.Andmanydid
followhisexample,formallydenyingtheMovement.
Thehourbroughtmorethantheyearbecausethered
dragoninKremlinhaddied.
Still,itwastoolate.ManydeniedtheLegionnaireMovement
already.Thosewhoaskedformoretimetothinkwere
refused.TheonlyonewhodidntdenywasNedelcuAristide,
whowasinsanethoughanddidntcount.

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ThiswasthepurposeoftheMoscowoccult:tomakeus
denytheLegion,usingcontinuousandunbearabletortures,
tomakeusmorallycompromisein ontofoneanotherand
loseourmutualtrust.
You,comradesofourswhodidntgowherewewentandyou
arestillalive,aswellasthosewhoshallcomeaerus,judge
ushowyourconsciencetellsyouto.Wewerejudgedseverely
byourownconscience.Thetortureswhichweenduredwe
dontwishevenuponourenemies.
WhatmoreargumentscanIbringconcerningourdenial?
Historywilljudgeus,witharightjudgementandnota
charadeoftrialliketheBolsheviksmadeforus,behind
whichTheRedInternationalpulledthestrings.
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Thebestandmostvaluableofushavebeenkilled.

THE DENYING OF THE


LEGION AND ITS
LEGIONNAIRE SUPERIORS

Satanshydra,thecommunism,wasntsatisedonlywith
compromisingusin ontofoneanother,bymakingus
denytheLegion,butforcedustobringthemostbase
insults,slandersanddenigrationstoourCaptain,superiors
andcomradeswhomweknew.

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Knowingourdenialwasonlyformal,Nicolskiwantedto
havesomethingmoreinwriting,notonlyourdenialofthe
LegionnaireMovementwhichtheyaskedtobedonein
writing.
Iamaskingmycomradestounderstandandbeconvinced
thatthemost,withveryfewexceptions,deniedtheLegion
onlyformallyandremainedonthepositionthatGheorghiu
explainedintheinterrogatoryinthatstoryofthebeautiful
girlwhomhedremainloyal.
Asfarasthedenigrationisconcerned,theslandering,the
insultsandthedepreciationaddressedtothelegionnaire
superiors,theywerentwri enbyusbutbytheonesinthe

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commi ee.TheywerethengatheredandgiventoTurcanu
whointurnsentthemtoNicolski.
Generally,theissueofdenigratingthelegionnairesuperiors
intheforcedlaborsectionwasasdecentasitcouldbe,given
thecertaincircumstances.Nicolski,seeingthathecannot
reachhisgoal,inventedinsultsandslandersaddressedto
theLegionsgreatestsuperiors,whichheinturnasked
Turcanutobringthemtothechiefsofthetorture
commi ees,tobereadin ontofus.Themostofusdidnt
payanya entiontotheseslanders,exceptingafewyounger
pupilsandstudents.
Gheorghiucamebackwithanothersolutiontothisissueas
well.
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Askedifheknowsanyimmoraldeedsthelegionnaire
superiorsmayhavedoneingeneral,he,withthecalmofa
saintandirreproachablemorala itude,answeredZaharia:
Wellsir,youhavetorturedmesoastomakemeleavemy
love,identiedwiththeLegion,tonotloveheranymore,to
denyher,buttoinsulther,denigrateher,slanderher
becauseIoncelovedher,sir,itcannotbedone!
Noteveniftheoneyouloveleyou,becauseoftheloveyou
haveforher,commonsensedoesntallowyoutotalkbadof
her.Youtorturedus,forcingustoeatourownexcretions
andsayitwasgood,but,asfaraslovegoes,thereisno
compromise.

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Idontknowanything,didntseeorhearaboutimmoral
deedsoflegionnairesuperiorsIknew.Youwantmeto
inventslanders?This,aswell,cannotbedone!
Gheorghiusa itudewasasafenetformostofus.I
answeredthesametoZahariasquestionandgottopayfor
itdearly.
Howcouldtheybedefamed,whatreproachescouldyou
addresstoRaduGyr,NicolaePatrascu,VicaNegulescu,
CostacheOprisan,GabrielBalanescu,RaduMironovici,
PetreTutea,MirceaNicolau,thegroupofengineers om
IasisPolytechnics,NeluandIonPaunescu,Eugen
Teodorescu,thepriestandlawyerPaslariu,theprosecutor
Ambrozieandhiswife,GiliIoanid,IonIanulide,Popescu
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Ion,LefaAristide,PopescuTraian,FloricaDumitrescu,
MirceaMotei,GeluGheorghiu,ReusGheorghe,theScutaru
brothers,IonandMihaiLungeanu,LazarAndrei,Emil
Branzei,TeodorValeriu,thebrothersIonandCostica
Stamate,VasilePatrascu,NeculaiSimionescu,PintilieIon,
NedelcuAristide,IosubMihai,CosticaButan,ZelicaBerza,
UngureanuVasile,HoinicDragos,Tatuleathepriest,Olta
Manoliu,NicolaBeuran,theDumitriusisters,Gioga
Parizianu,GheraseAurel,Grebeneathepriest,AurelObreja
andotherthousandsandthousandsoflegionnairesnot
mentionedhere?
ForthisreasonIwanttoaskforgiveness ommycomrades
murderedinprisonsandthosewhoarestillalive,becauseI
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didntwritetheirnameshereandtheyweresokindtome
too,butmymemorycouldntmemorizethem.Ididnt
mentionthoseabroad,thoseparachuted,neitherthosein
Gavrilasgroup omFagaras.
Andwhatbadthingscouldwesayaboutthechiefofthe
LegionnaireMovement,HoriaSima,underwhosecommand
wesprangintoba le?
Usingthesedenigrations,insultsandslanders,theMoscow
occultwantedtotearthelegendofthelegionnaireelite om
theyounglegionnaireshearts.ThiswastheMoscowoccults
purposebuttheydidntsucceedatit.
Zaharia,seeingthathedidntget omuswhathewanted,
broughtsomepapers omTurcanu,allkindsofinvectives
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wri enonthem,andreadthemtous.Butthisdidnt
succeedeither,becausehehadtobringevidenceortheone
blamedtoadmithisdeed.
Inordertohidetheirdirtydeeds,thecommuniststhrew
themontheiradversariesbacks.

THE TORTURE OF THE


MORAL CONSCIENCE
Thersttimewewereaskedifwearelegionnairesornot
anymore,onlyveofussaidtheywerentanymore.

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Thenthesi ingonthebunkwithourhandsuptorture
cameandthebeatingsadministeredtothosewhodidnt
suerthistorture,continuingwithmockingGodinHis
PassionWeekandthepilgrimageonourkneesthrough
theroom,eightdays,followedbyourdenialoftheLegion.
Turcanustatedthenin ontofallofusthatthe
legionnairesdontexistanymore.
Wewereintheseventhdayofindescribabletortures.Our
memoryhadbeenemptiedbyeverythingweknowand
didntknowconcerningouractivitiesandtheactivitiesof
thosewhowere ee.

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Toescapethisunbearabletortureabit,manyofus,
especiallytheyoung,declaredthingstrueoruntrue,
becausethesueringcrossedtheboundaryofresistance.
ARomaniansaying:MayGodnotgivetomanallhecan
bear,cametrueinadramaticway.Thephotoofthesefaces
whichexpresseddespairtakentoitslimits,andtorture
takentothelimitofmadness,couldhavebeenthemost
earthsha eringproofofthisbeastlyandsatanicevent.
Thepsychologists,parapsychologists,psychiatristsand
otherspecialistswouldhavepossessedarichstudymaterial.
Theseimageswouldhavespokenfullyaboutthecommunist
terrorandwhyinsidethecommunistempire,untilthe
present,norebellioneveroccurredagainstthesatanicreign.
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Iftheunwri enorwri enstatementsemptiedour


conscience,iftheLegiondenialcompromisedusas
legionnaires,still,themostheinoustorture,whichacted
insideourprivacy,wastheprostitutionofourmoral
conscience.
Theconscienceisthemostprivatepartofthehumanbeing.
Duetothisprivacy,ourSaviorinstitutedtheHolyMisteryof
Confession,throughthepowerHegavetotheHolyApostles
whichtheseinturntransmi edtoallthepriests,untilthe
endoftheworld,speakingthewords:Iwillgiveyouthe
keysofthekingdomofheaven;whateveryoubindonearth
willbeboundinheaven,andwhateveryoulooseonearth
willbeloosedinheaven.Thiswarrant,giventoman
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throughpriests,isthewarrantGodgavetothepersonin
orderforhimtopartakeatHisgreatplanofsalvation.
Theonewhoconfessesemptieshisconscience,beforehis
confessor,ofallthatisinhumaninsidehim,ofallthe
devilishtemptationsandluresandofalltheevilhedidto
hisbrother.
OfallthetorturesIveseenandbynow,thereadergotto
know,themoraltorturessurpassedallimagination.Thats
why,nooneinthisworldhasundernocircumstancesthe
righttorapetheprivacyofhisneighborsconscience,
becausethe eedomofconsciencewasgiventomanBy
God.

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Eachofuswastorturedsoastorealizehedoesnthaveany
chanceofavoidingthismoralprostitution.
Forthisreasonsomeofusinventedorexaggeratedfacts
thateventhesickestmindcouldntcomprehend,justtobe
believedsowecanescapethetortures.Youwereaskedif
besidesstealing,lies,scammingwhichyouhadtopublicly
confessyouhavecommi edsexualperversions,the
prostitutionoftheconsciencebeingespeciallythesexual
perversionsandsexualrelations.Andtheyoung
legionnairesintheBrotherhoodoftheCrossortheonesin
thestudentcentershadbeenspeciallyeducatedsothey
couldavoidperversions,morallyandsexually.

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Facingthetorturecommi ee,youwereaskedifyouwere
everinvolvedinsexualperversions.Ifyourepliedno,you
weretorturedfornotdoingit;ifyousaidyesyouwere
torturedthesame,becauseyoudidit;eitherway,youwere
tortured.
Thatswhy,yougottobelikeAndrisan,beardornobeard.
Inthatmadnessofdespair,aerthehorrendouscontinuous
tortures,alotofuscametotheconclusionthatIwillsay
anddoanything.
Inthisstage,whenthewilltodiscern,theshameand
commonsensehadbeenlongabolished,whenthetortured
wasstrugglinginthegu er,knowingthattomorrowhe

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couldgoinsaneonthebunkjustlikePintilie,Nedelcuand
Ionescu,whatcouldanyoneaskofthatman?
Someofusbegantotell,withoutanyrestraint,deedsofall
sorts,whichcannotbeevenseeninpathology.Poormen,
theydidnthaveanydiscernmentorwill;theywere
completelymad.So,theydeclaredthattheydidallthe
sexualperversions,thattheyhadbeencopulatingwith
domesticanimals,withtheirmothers,sisters,relativesand
theonestheypersonallyknew.
ItwasasifSodomandGomorramovedintothePitesti
prison.Inthemomentthesestatementswerebeingdone,
youhadtowonder,withnoluckforanswer,ifyouwerethe
madoneanddontunderstandwhatyourcomradeis
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declaringorifhewasthemadoneandyoucouldnt
understandwhyhewentbananas.
Thisprostitutionlastedsome15days.Thedeclarationswere
moredecentintheforcedlaborsectionandbasementroom
no.3.
InthedeclarationsatGherla,madebytheyoungest,things
soscabrouswerestated,thatyoureashamedtoeven
rememberthem,letalonetopronounceorwritethem.
Butwhattheoccultdidntforeseewasthefactthatthemost
ofus,havingdiscernmentandunderstanding,werent
aectedbythesituation.Insomecasesthough,Nicolski,
usingTurcanuandhistools,succeededtomakeusdo
whatevertheywantedto.Because,forsomeofus,the
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recoverywasimpossible.Theenemycouldnowmakethem
intobullies,informers,anything.
Nowallowmetoanticipateandconfessafactthatsheds
light,foranymanofgoodfaith,onmyarmationsabove.
IntheAutumnof1961Ihadtwomoreyearsuntilmy
punishmentwillexpireandIwasimprisonedintheAiud
penitentiary.
Ihadbeenpunishedalot,inblackcells,inthebasement
andwithseverearrestbythepoliticalocerlieutenant
colonelIvan,who,since1957,hadbeeninterrogatingme
andwantedtocatchmewithsomething.ButbecauseIlived
onother equenciesandtheprisondidnthinderme
anymore,mypositionwasrocksolidsoIcouldlast.
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Onegooddayhetookmeoutofmycellandintoaroomin
theadministrationbuilding,tellingmethatIwillbetalking
withabigcomrade omtheMinistryofInternalAairs
andtobecarefulhowandwhatIwilltalk.
Aeraquarterofanhouracolonel omthesecuritycame
in,around45ofage,withanintellectualface.Hepresented
himselfandstartedthediscussioninacivilizedmanner.He
wasaskingmeaboutthingsIvedonesincemyarrestand
untilthatmoment.Hewasfamiliarwiththelegionnaire
issueandtheissueconcerningourdetention.
WhenPitestiandGherlawerebroughtintothediscussionI
couldtellhewasfamiliarwithmya itude,alongwithmy
characterizationmadebyTurcanu.Concerningthethings
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whichoccurredthere,ItoldhimthatTurcanuhadbeen
interrogatingtheoneshostiletotheregime.Hebecameabit
enraged,butrestrainedhimself.Headmi edthatthe
denouncementsinPitestiandGherlarepresentedamistake
oftheadministrationbackthenandthathewillhavetoact
inadierentway omnowon.Iwasconvincedthathe
admi edtohisfaultsonlyinterestedly.Hecutrighttothe
chase:
MisterBordeianu,Ihavethepowerrightinthismoment,to
getyououtofprison,ifyouwillacceptthepropositionIwill
maketoyou.
Butbeforeherevealedhispropositiontome,heaskedmeif
Iamstillinmyrightmindandbody.
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ThankGod!Ireplied.
HethenaskedmehowdidIsuerandstillsuerthrough
thedetention,becauseaerthemassivearrestsin19581959
verysevereconditionswereimposedtous,almost
unbearable.
Asyoucansee!
HethenaskedmeifIstillhopetobereleased omprison.
Idontbelieveinthecommunistsmercyandnothingcan
convincemethattheywontconvictmeagain!
Hedidntreply.
Youdontfancybeing ee?
Idonttrustyour eedomanymore!
Aerthisexchangeofwordsheresumes:
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MisterBordeianu,youforgetwhatIamtalkingabouthere:
Ihavethepower,asIsaid,tonegotiatewithyou,and
followingthepropositionIwillmaketoyou,providedyou
acceptitandsignit,leavingthisroom,youwonteverget
backtothatcell.
Whatisthisabout?
IwilltakeyououtofprisonanddriveyoutoOradea,where
wewilloeryouallthecivilizedconditionsandevenluxury
conditions,withyoungandbeautifulwomenIalready
sawthetemptationifyouacceptandtakethe
responsibilitytogetinformationandinformtheSecurity
precisely,ofallthatisbeingdone,saidandplannedin
certainsocialcircles.
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WhenIheardthisIlostit.Andthiscouldbeseenonmy
face.Noticingmychangeina itude,inordertowarm
thingsali le,hecontinued:
DontbealarmedmisterBordeianu,becauseitisnotabout
yourcomrades,becauseIknowyouarestillalegionnaire,
althoughyoudenieditatPitesti.Irepeat,justsowecanbe
clear:youwontdothistoyourlegionnaires,nortoother
politicalprisonersreleased omprisonnortothehidden
enemiesoftheregime,butyourmissionwillbetoget
informationandratonlyonours.
TothisIsmiledandasked:
Whatdoyoumean,yours?
Onthecommunists,heemphasized.
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So,youdonottrustyourown?
No!Heanswered,conrmingmyhunch.
Thisisall?
Yes,largely;wewillnalizethedetailswhenyouhave
acceptedmyoer.
Beingcondent,becauseIhad13yearsofprisonandwent
throughallthat,andbecausemyexperienceandconscience
werethesameaswhenIrstenteredprison,Ianswered:
Colonelsir,aersomanyyearsbehindbars,ofexperience,
aerallIveheardandlivedandknowninsideprison,
besidethefactIamstillalegionnaire,Iamalsoan
orthodoxChristian,inthetruestsenseoftheChristian
concept.Thatswhy,allthatyoucouldoermeeveninthese
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direcircumstances,inOradeaorelsewherecouldnttempt
meatall.Icannotacceptthisoer,oranythingyoucould
giveme,becauseIwishharmuponanyone,notevenonmy
enemiesandthosewhowanttotakemylifeaway.Iam
convincedthatifyouwouldbelockedawaylikeIam,even
foroneyear,youwouldchangeyourpointofview.Andyou
arenttheonlyonewhosepropositionIdidntacceptaer13
yearsofprison,becauseIgotthesameoerin1946 oma
manofyoursIonBerac,beforeIwasarrested.Andyou
shouldknow,that,aerthedenouncementsstoppedin
GherlaandaerStalinsdeath,Icategoricallyrefusedto
serveyou,noma ertheadvantagesyoucouldoerme.My
lifespurposeisnttoharmanyone,butdogoodtomyfellow
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manandeventomyenemy.And,aslongasIwillhavelife
insideme,toserveGod,infaithandlove,soIcansavemy
soul.IamsorryIdisappointedyou,butlookelsewhere.
Iwassurprisedbytheoerhemademe,buthowsurprised
hewas,notonlyatmyrefusal,whichheprobablyexpected,
butmya itudetowardsearthlygoodsandmywayof
thinking.Iwascertainthoughthatheheardthesame
things omothercomradesandthatiswhyheremained
quiet;hewascompletelymuted.
Ireturnedtomycell,andheprobablywenttosearchfor
othercollaborators.

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Thecommunistsconvincedsomeofus,whenwewereso
unbalanced,madanddespaired,andsomeofusbecame
themostdocilevictims.
Analyzingthisright,withnopassion,yougettounderstand
theseunfortunatepeopletoo,whoacceptedthisdangerous
game,withouttheirconsentandconviction.
We,theoneswhodidntbuythis,arentheroes.Iamcertain
thatnotbecauseofourcourageanda itudeweweresaved,
butonlybecauseOfGodsMercyWhokeptus om
trippingandfallingdown.Tobeproudyoudidgooddeeds
andthatyouaremorethanyoureallyare,meanshavingan
outofcontrolego,whichmanytimesleadsyoutoperdition.
Because,situationscouldcomeoveryouwhicharemore
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thanyoucanhandlewithyourphysicalandspiritual
powersandmakeyoubecomeevenmoreevilthantheone
youaccusedofbeingcorrupted.Apart omMeyoucando
nothingareTheLordsWords.
Becauseofthis,onlyhewhoentrustedhishelplessnessand
weaknessinGodsmercyandhelpwillconquer.Itisnot
hardtoaccusethesebrothersofourswhofellasvictimsto
thecommunists.Theygaveuponlyaercontinuous
intolerabletortures,whentheirwillpowerandwilltodiscern
didnthelpthemanymore.Fearandmadnessofdespair
overthrewtheminthenetsofthosewhowerethrowingthe
baitfortheseunfortunateones.Butthemillionsof

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voluntaryorpaidinformersandrats,whoputthemselvesat
communismsdisposal,whydidtheydoit,Iwonder?
Sowearecompelledtorightlydiscernbetweenthevictimsof
thetorturesandthosewho,consciousandoftheirown ee
wills,oeredthemselvestoservesatan.Couldanyoneask
moreofamanthanhecangive,physicallyandspiritually?
Ofcoursenot,becausemenarenotallmadethesame.

THE LAST TORTURES IN


PITESTI FORTRESS
Aertheintolerablephysicaltorturesandtorturesof
conscience,wedidnthaveanythingtohideanymoreandwe
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didnthaveanyphysicalandmoralresourcestowithstand
thetortureseither.
Duringthemoraltorturesthephysicaltorturescontinued
aswell,atthesamerate,fortheonessentencedwithforced
labor,untilthepublicstatementsinsidethecellandthose
wri eninthe4thhospitalroomwerealmostnished.
Turcanu,atNicolskisorders,pushedustonalizethe
wri enstatementsforacoupleofreasons:
Forallthoseundeclaredattheocialinvestigationto
becomeknown,sotheycouldconvictthosecommi edto
exterminationcamps;
Toknowthosewhoareagainsttheregimeandhold
functionsinthestateapparatus;
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Theyneededprisoners,fortheinceptionoftheDeath
Canal,fortheworkinprisonworkshopsandthelead
mines;
YoushouldknowthatthedenouncementsstartedinPitesti
continuedattheCanalwiththestudents,pupilsand
workerswhohadshortsentences.Theseweretakento
Pitesti,TargsorandGherlaandsubmi edtothesame
methodsoftorture,soastorecruit omamongthemchiefs
ofsquadsandbrigadiers.Theonesrecruitedusingthese
tortures,inturnhadtocoerce,usinghorrorandterror,
thosewhowereforcedtoworkthere.

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Asforus,theonesinforcedlaborandsomeinhardlabor,
othertrialswerebeingpreparedfor:theleadminesin
MaramuresandthehorrorworkshopsinGherla.
Thetorturewhichwasappliedtousinourlastmonthsof
stayinPitesti,wastypicaltotheonedevelopedbythe
BolshevikmonsterMakarenko.
Themethodworkedstrictlypsychologically.Asyousaton
thebunkinxedposition,allkindsofthingsranthrough
yourmind,someofthemIconsideredtobediabolical
temptationsentirely,whichIhadinnormalcircumstances
aswell.Butnowwehadnopowertocontrolourselvesand
chasetheseaway omthescreenofourconscience.

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Forinstance,oneofthoseinthecommi ee,morepossessed
thanyouwere,suddenlystoppedin ontofyouand,
surprisingyou,heaskedyouwhatyouarethinkingaboutin
thatmoment.Facingthisquestion,thesatanicthoughts
mixedtogetherclu eringinsideyourconsciencewithother
thoughts,somuchsothatmanytimesyoudidntknow
whattosay;itwasasifsomeonetookyourmindaway.In
thisconfusionofthoughts,beinglewithoutthemostbasic
will,youcouldendupinthefollowingsituations:
Ifyoutoldwhatyourthoughtwasanditdidnotcontradict
thedenouncements,buttheyagreedwithit,youwould
escapethebeating,becauseyourfacedidntshowanxiety;

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Ifyouwerehidingsomething,theycouldseepalenesson
yourfaceand,inthiscasethebeatingwasasurething,still
consideringyoutobeagreatbandit;
Ifyoutoldthemyouarentthinkinganything,andinthis
casethemimicofthefacebetrayedyourlie,youwereagain
consideredtobeagreatbandit,dishonestandexperienced,
verydangerouseven,andanintolerabletortureawaited
you.
Veryfewexceptionswhensomeofusescapedwithouta
beating,duringtheonemonthofthereadingofthoughts
torture.
Surprisingly:ourmemorywastheonlypsychicfunction
availablewhichstillretaineditssharpness.Unwillingly,
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sometimesfactsandeventsthatyoudidntthinktheyeven
happenedtoyoucamebacktoyourmemory.
Ourmemoryhadbeensweptaway,allthattimeplaced
insideit,intranquilityandorder,hadbeentorn omit.
Ourdatacompartmentwassoemptied,thatitwaslikea
housethatthievesrobbedofeverything,untiltheverylast
thread.Whatcouldyouplacethereinreturn,whenyou
didnthaveanythinganymoretoplacethere?
Thethoughtreadingconcludedthetorturewhich
enduredforninemonths,accordingtothethreat:Wewill
readandknowyourverythoughts.
Oursoulswerecrippledanddefeatedandwemanifested
andbehavedlikerobots.Itwaslikenothingwaslealivein
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us,andthemanofreasonwaslonggone ominsideus.
Fromtimetotimetherewasasparkofreasonstillinour
souls.Butthisterriedusbecauseoftheimminentfall
whichfollowed.
ThisiswhyIstronglya estwithallcertaintythatthe
continuoustorture,intenseandwithoutanyperspectivefor
awayoutleadstothedestructionofwhatismostpriceless
insidethehumanbeing.
Ifahardnessscaleis1to10,ourpowerofresistance,of
enduringthetortureswas om1to10aswell.And,ifthe
pointsatwhichthemetalsmeltrange ombetween0to
thousandsofdegrees,allofthemmeltingatsomepoint,the

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samethinghappenedtoustoo,theoneswhoenduredthe
denouncementsatGherlaandPitesti.
Takingthesethingsintoaccount,weconcludethatour
commonsensedoesntallowforustojudgetheonewho
enduredthesetrials.
Somegaveupaertheysawanotherfullofbloodand
crippledbecauseofbeatings,withoutthembeingslapped
once.Othersgaveupwithaslaporaeragoodbeating,
othersfollowinghundredsofbeatings,otherscommi ed
suicideorwentmadandothersstill,werekilled.
Somegaveupaeradayoftorture,someaeramonth,
someaeryears.Weallmeltedthough,ortoputitin
communisttermssoened,accordingtothestatement:
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Evenifyouweremadeofreinforcedconcrete,wewillstill
soenyou.Howcouldwenotmelt,whenwedidnthave
anymeatonourbonesanymoreandourboneswereswollen
andbadlybruisedaertheyhadbeenhitbyclubs?
Aerthisexperiencethethoughtreadingstarted.
Thecuriousthingwasthatthemostofuscouldnttellwhat
wewerethinkingofanymore,whatkindofthoughtscrossed
ourmindsandiftheywereconformingwiththeirrulesor
not.
Some,especiallythoseinthemysticalgroup,saidtheyare
praying,otherstheyarethinkinghome,andotherssaidall
kindsofthings,onemoreamazingthanthenext.The
inconceivableandincomprehensibledicultyofknowing
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yourownthoughts,wasthataersomanyyearsoftortures,
wecouldntexpressourselvesinanintelligibleway.
I,aswellasmycomrades,sawwithourowneyeshowwe
couldntcontrolourfaceexpressionanymore,whichalways
betrayedourthoughtsanditcouldntmaskthemanymore.
Duringthetimewhenthepossessedtorturedyouhewas
lookingstraightinyoureyesaskingyouwhatyouare
thinkingof,orwhatkindofthoughtsyouhave,andifyou
didntanswersincerely,hesawthethoughtyouweretrying
tohideonyourface.Youdidnthaveanywillorpowerto
stopthisexteriorization,sotheycouldtellexactlyifyou
weretellingthetruthornot.

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Thiswasthelastphaseofthecollectivemadnessweallwho
werebeingdenouncedlived.Andtheendresultofthis
readingofthethoughts,predictedbyNicolskiand
prophesizedtousbyTurcanu,wasthetotaldistrusttowards
theonesi ingnexttoyou.

THE DENIAL OF GOD.


THE FALL
Ifthereadingofthethoughtstorturetechniquelledthecup
ofhopelessnessandmadnessuptothepointofspillingout,the
denialofGodandtherightfaith,whichstoodastheoneandour
lastsupport,collapsedusentirely.Wehadbeenthrowninto
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chaos,unbalanced,withnosupportorperspective,atthe
discretionofourtorturers.Thisfacthadadverseconsequences
concerningwhatwewouldstillhavetoseeandexperiencein
anotherofsatansfortresses,Gherla.
AtthebeginningofAugust1951,whenthepublicand
wri endeclarationswerealmostattheirend,andthe
thoughtreadingtorturehadreachedthelevelforeseenin
theoccultsplans,Turcanucame omroomtoroom,with
theexpressionofasatiseddemonandIheardhim
repeatingthathecouldtemptanddeceivethosewhohad
beentoughandfaithful,rollingtheminthemud.
Heybandits,youverywellrememberwhatIsaidinthis
roomandintheotherrooms,andIamnotkidding,Iwill
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keepmywordandwilluseallthemethodstoreachmygoal.
Andhereweare,usingthesemethods,wehavesucceededin
readingyourverythoughts,factwhichyouneverexpected.
Iwanttotellyouthough,thatthemostdangerousofyou,
bandits,remaintheoneswhoconfessyourfaithinGod.
AndIamconvincedthattheoneswhodidntdenytheir
faithinGod,didntdenytheirfaithinTheLegionnaire
Movementeither.Youarethemostdangerous,most
experiencedandcrimsonlegionnaires.
So,forthesethedenouncementswillbecontinuedyears,in
thewayyouvecometoknowthem,butusingothermethods
aswell.Wemustgetthisaberration,thefaithinGod,outof
yourmindsandheartsforgood.
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Then,heaskedus:Whoofyou,bandits,believesinGod
anylonger?
Almosthalfoftheroomraisedtheirhands.Facingthis
situation,Turcanucontinued:Igotmethodsforyoutoo,
theoneswhoraisedyourhands,tomakeyousayyou
abolishedyoufaith,inthesamewayyouhavedeniedthe
LegionnaireMovement.
Then,addressingtoZaharia:Hey,comebymyocelater,
seewhatyouhavetodowiththesebandits.
Forthosetrulyfaithful,thebiggestpossiblethreatwasthe
lastthingTurcanusaid,whichnoonewasexpecting.We
hadtobehitinwhatwasmostdeartous,ouronlysupport

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thefaithinGodthehopeofourredemption om
satansclaws.
Theissueofsalvationdoesntinterestpeoplewhodont
believeinGod,becausetheyaretiedwiththismaterial
world,earthlygoods,socialstatus,thepleasuresand
satisfactionsofthislife,somuchso,thatonlydeathwill
separatethem omthese.
ButfortheoneswhobelieveinGodlimitless,insalvation
andeternallife,notbeingtieddowntoEarth,thebiggest
tragedyiswhentheyarebeingforcedtoconfessifthey
believeinGodanymoreornot.
Peopleliketheholyfathersandthemartyrswouldhave
preferredathousanddeaths,thantodenyGodandthe
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faithinHim.Butsomeofuscamewiththeexcusethatif
evenPeterthegreatApostlewhobelievedandlovedJesus
limitless,deniedhimoutoffear,thenus,somehelpless
microbes,whatcouldwedo?
ThisiswhattheoneswhodeniedGodformallysaid,asthey
deniedtheLegionaswell.
Andif,apparently,theyoungmenwhoenduredPitesti
behavedgenerallythesame,whenwelookcloser,things
dontlookthesamethough.
Eachbehaveddierently,dependingonhisfaithinGod
rst,thendependingontheira achmentandfaithinthe
politicalviewwhichtheyhadbeensentencedfor,depending
onhisphysicalresistanceandespeciallydependingonhis
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moralandspiritualpower.Knowingthis,wecannotplace
alltheyoungmenwhoenduredPitestiinoneplace,saying
thatallbehavedthesame.
Ifallbehavedthesame,allwouldhavegivenupaertheir
rstslaporduringtherstday,somewouldnthavebeen
killed,somewouldnthavecommi edsuicide,others
wouldnthavebecomebulliesorgrosskillers.Onthe
physicalandspiritualresistancescale,eachregisteredin
directproportionwithhimself.ConcerningTurcanus
armations,thatthemostdangerousbanditsarethe
oneswhobelieveinGod,weareinclinedtosayhewas
correct.

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WhodoesntrememberVasilePatrascu,whosefaith
remainedunshakableandconfesseduntilthelastmoment,
withallthetortureheendured?Whodoesntremember
ZelicaBerza omthebasementroomno.3,Reus,
Ungureanu,Nedelcu,Popa,Andrisan,Dinescu,Popescu
Paul,andtheothers,whopubliclystatedthatnoonecan
makethemdenyGodandHisChurch,withallthetortures,
evenmoresowhentheChurchisadmi edbyLaw.
Itistruethat,duetotheintolerabletortures,manydenied
Godtoointheend.Buttheirdenialwasshortlived.Atthe
end,throughrepentance,theywentbackToChrist.
Ididntregisteramongtheoneswhocategoricallystated
theirbeliefinGod,noramongtheoneswhostatedthey
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dont.Thereaderhasfamiliarizedhimselfwithmyviewby
now,thatmansdutyistotryinallhislifescircumstances.
Ididnthaveanymeritthough,thethoughtsanda itude
wereinspiredtomeByGodandtheordealhadtobe
prolongeduntilthelimitofresistance.Ionlybelievedand
hopedinGodsmercy,Whosavedme ombecomingabully
andamurdererinPitestisdenouncements.
WhenIwasaskedbyZahariaifIbelieveinGodanymoreor
not,fortherstandlasttimeinmylife,mymindbecame
darkandlost,somethingthatnoonewilleverunderstand
butme,theonewhoexperiencedit.Whodarkenedmy
powerofdiscernmentthen?Icouldntdiscernthesatanic
thoughtswhichdarkenedmyconscienceandmymind.God
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triedbackthentogivemetheopportunitytoconfessmy
faithinHimopenlyandwithoutfear,inthislasttrial.ButI
didntaskforHishelp,forHimtoenlightenmymindand
conscience,soIhesitatedtoconfesswithallmyheart.
Thosewhoimaginethatintheseoutstandingsituations
theycanlastonlybytheirownstrength,arecheating
themselvesandwilldosountiltheendoftheworld.Didnt
Jesussay:

o c o o i ?

Thatswhy,whenIdidntyellandimploreforGodshelp,I
fell.Andsogreatwasmyfall,becausesatantormentedmy
soul,anddidsoforthreeyears.
WhenZahariaaskedmewhatismyfaithlikenow,a
thoughtwhichwasntminenorGods,tookcontroloverme
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andwhispered:Sayyouarenotprayingtogodanymore!
AndthisiswhatIpubliclystated,inbasementroomno.3:
Idontprayanymore,IdontpraytoGodanymore.And
omthatmomentonIdidntpray.
TheresultofbreakingthecommunionwithGodthrough
prayer,wasthatsatansspiritenteredinsidemeand
torturedandtormentedme, omAugust1951untilEaster
1954.IneedtopointoutthatIonlysaidIdontpray
anymore,andnotthatIdontbelieveinGodanymore.But
mygreatestsinwasthatIdidntprayatall,forreal.Even
moreso,becauseIknewthewordsWatchandpray,thatye
enternotintotemptation:thespiritindeediswilling,but
theeshisweak.
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Theprayer,astheholyfathersconfess,isthecommunionof
thefaithfulmanwithGod.Init,mantalkswithGod,
AdoresHim,gloriesHim,thanksHim,tellsHimhis
sorrowsandtroubles,asksHimforforgiveness,forhelpand
mercyetc
InthechapteraboutGherlaIwilldescribefortheonesthat
haveunlimitedbeliefinGodandmiracles,howIrestored
mycommunionwithGodinprayer.Ishallneverforget
thoseandIseethemlikemountainsbeforeme,thosewho
hadthestrength,courage,faithandmanhoodtostatetheir
beliefinGodwithoutfear.Probably,thatswhythebigstars
shineonthenightskyandcanbeseen,whileothers,small
andhelpless,remaininsidethedark,forgo en.
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AtthehalfofAugust,Zaharialetheroom,becausehe
wasntthechiefofthetorturecommi eeanymore,andthe
xedpositiontortureonthebunkended.Thebeatings
stoppedaswell.ButIlivedinthefearthat,aerthis
apparentcalm,acruelstormwascomingonthehorizon.
AndthiswasGherla.
AtthehalfofSeptember,asmall actionofusleforthe
Canal,sometotheleadminesinMaramures,andothersto
Gherla.
If,inthetimeIwritethesememories,Iwouldbeaskedto
choosebetweendeathandPitesti,Iconfesswithallmyheart
andfearofGodthatIwouldpreferdeathathousandtimes.

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AndIbelievethatallofmycomradeswhoarestillaliveand
wentthroughthatfortressofsataninPitestithinkthe
same.Isthereamoreopenandsincereconfessionwho
couldsatisfythereaderoftheselines?

THE LEAVE FROM PITESTI


AsIrelatedtoyoubefore,startingwiththesecondhalfof
August,thepublicstatementsinbasementroomno.3and
the4thhospitalroomwerealmostatanend.Thetortures
hadstopped,withfewexceptionstheonesinthedeath
cellsattheheadoftheT.
Meanwhile,Turcanualongwithhischiefofstaandthe
chiefsofcommi eeswereinabighurrytolterandallocate
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thestatementstotheirrespectiveaddressesanddothe
wri encharacterizationtoeachyoungdenouncedman.
Thischaracterizationhadtobea achedtothetwoles;the
criminalle,whichcouldbefoundattheprisonclerkand
thesecretle omtheMinistryofInternalAairs.
Ionlyknewofthesecharacterizations omhearsay,butI
wassureoftheirexistenceseeingthem,whentheMinistry
ofInternalAairscolonelcamewithmycompletele,the
one omtheprisonplustheone omtheMinistryof
InternalAairs.
IhadmyforcedarresthomeinBaraganbackthen,in1963.
ThesecharacterizationsmadebyTurcanuandthechiefsof
thecommi eeshadaveryevilroleinthetimeofour
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incarceration.Thepunishmentsweregivendependingon
those.Forsometheyhavebeenfatal.Whokneweachofus
be er, omallpointsofview,thanTurcanuandthebosses
ofthetorturecommi ees?
AtthehalfofAugust,the14whowerekeptinaxed
positiononthebunk:Reus,Gheorghiu,Grigoras,Dinescu,
Visovan,Santimbreanu,Nedelcu,Popescu,Draganescu,
Bordeianuandtheothers,wererelievedofthistorture,
eventwhichwefeltlikeatrueblessing.
Idonthavetomentiontheincarcerationconditions:the
hunger,thecold,thelackofmedicalassistance,lackof
baths,unwashedclothesandthefactthat,since10thof
December1949,wehadntbeenallowedtohave eshair.All
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ofthesethings,comparedtothetortureswehadbeen
submi edto,weresoinsignicant,thatforustheywerent
importantatallanymore.
Iremindthereaderthat,duringallthetimeofthetortures,
thequalityandquantityofthefoodwereunderthelevelof
basicmetabolism600700caloriesperday;themeasure
imposedforustoreduceourphysicalstrengthandmakeus
incapableofraisingevenonengertoallthatwasdoneto
us.Concerningthecold,itwasmorelikeablessing,when
allofyourbodywasawound.
AndIneedtomentionsomethingelsetoo,rstofallforthe
moreskepticalmedicsandhygienists.Duringmystayin
roomno.2groundoorandbasementroomno.3,notone
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ofthosetorturedwasevertakenouttothemedicaloce
andnowoundwaseverinfected.Witnessesareallthosewho
enduredinthereandarestillalive.NotevenGheorghius
woundattheneckhadbeentreated,butonlybandagedby
PetricaTudosewithdirtyragsanditdidntinfect.Itseems
thatwhenGodwants,thelawofnaturecanbeoverridden.
Andmaybeitwasbe erthisway,thatinninemonthswhile
wewereinbasementroomno.3,wedidnttakeabath,
becausewecouldntseeourwoundsandscareourselves.
ButIrepeat,alltheseconditionsdidntcountfacetoface
withthephysicalandmoraltorturesweendured.Andwhen
theyallowedustomovethroughtheroom,Iwaslivingthe
feelingofcoming omanotherworld,aerthatxed
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positiononthebunk,movingthroughtheroomwas
somethingoutoffairytales.
Theappearanceofthosethatpassedthroughsomany
monthsoftortureswaslikethatofmadmen,theirlook
wasntlikethatofanormalpersonanymore.Youhadthe
feelingyouareseeingshades.
AertheEastertorturesandtheonesadministeredinorder
tomakeusdenyTheLegionnaireMovement,Zaharia,the
chiefofthebasementroomno.3commi ee,beganto
changehisbehavior;asifsomethingwashappeninginside
hissoul.Hebecameabsent,thinkingandsad,hegaveup
hismusicalrepertoireandabsented omtheroommuch.

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Fromthemonsterandexecutionerhewas,hebecame
anotherperson.
IfelthehadaremorseforkillingPintilie.Maybe!?Aer
hisdenitivedeparture omtheroom,on15thofAugust,I,
remainingsolelywithMagirescuandPavaloaia,the
atmosphererelaxedabitandwecouldtalktoeachother.
Whatdidwehavetotalkthough?Theprivatethings om
othertimes,ourfuturehopes?Theyhadallbeenburied.
Wefearedeachotherlikeanimals,becauseduringthe
torturesourmovementsandeyeswerestudied,andallthe
faceexpressioningeneral.Weexchangedwordslikewe
werestrangerswhonevermetbefore,untilthattime.Thisis
howmuchwesuspectedeachother.So,wediscussedonly
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trivialma ers:themeals,theair,theroomserviceand
sleeping.Thethingswhichunitedusoncehadvanished
completely.
IwellrememberthestateofmindIhadwhenIwasallowed
tosleepononesideoronmybelly,insteadofsleepingin
thatxedpositiononmyback,asIsleptduringthenight.
Inthesecircumstances,thatbarewoodenboardonthe
bunkfeltlikethesoestbed.
AtthestartofSeptember1951,whenIsawTurcanuforthe
lasttimeinPitesti,Inoticedthathedidnthavethebunch
ofkeysinhishandlikeothertimes,andthechiefsection
guardwasguardinginsteadofhim.Thedoorswerelocked
withdeadboltsandpadlocks,thelightsout,openingand
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countingoftheinmatesbeingdoneeveryeveningand
morningbytherstguard,inthepresenceoftheguard
chiefofsection.Themealwasntservedbythecommi ee
inmatesanymore,butbytheguard,thefoodnowbeing
increased om600to800caloriesperday.
Wewereallsophysicallyandmorallyexhaustedthatwhen
wegotup omthebunks,wesawdarkin ontofoureyes
andbecamedizzy.
Meanwhile,ourlaundryweretakenforwashing,aerten
monthsofbeingdressedwiththem.Weweretakenintothe
innercourtyardstohauldustourblanketsandclothes
whichwehavebeendressingsincethemomentofour
arrests.
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So,Isawthesun,aerayearandahalfofdarkness.Even
more,weweretrimmed,shavedandtakentothebathroom
insmallgroups.Butseeingourwounds,someofthemnot
healedyet,mystateofmindinthisbathroomwasterrible.
Aerthearrangementsatthebathroomweredone,one
morning,thesectionchiefannouncedustobereadyforthe
inspectionofabigchief omBucharest.Hereishowthis
ocialvisitoccurred.
Wewereeachstandingnearourbunk,whenthedoorwas
openedandasuperiorocerappeared,acoloneldressedin
amilitiablueuniformandnotsecurityuniform.
BecauseZahariawasabsent,thereportwasgivenby
Magirescu.Aerhepresenteduseach,askingwhatour
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namesare,hestoppedin ontofthedoorand,withthe
grinofadeviltransformedintoman,herecommended
himself:MynameiscolonelZeller,GeneralWardenof
PenitentiariesinR.P.R..54
Itwasthemostshamefuloflies,becauseheinfactwasa
securityocerandoneofNicolskishenchmen,hisright
handman.Hewastheonewhohadbeendirectlyleading
thedenouncementsfollowingNicolskisorders.He
controlled,veriedandconductedthem,orderingthe
methodsoftorturealso.Heplayeddoubleortriple:withthe
Moscowoccult,TeohariandAnnaPaukersparty,and
anotheroccultthat,probably,onlyheknewabout.Thisis
whyhistruemasterassassinatedhimalso,intheend.Iwill

54

PopularRepublicofRomania

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laydownthewordsofthisvulgarassassin ommymemory
:
Heyyoubandits,areyoulegionnairesanymore?Iam
convincedthat,aeryouhavebeenthroughallthis,you
dontcareabouttheLegionanymore.Youshouldbeglad
yougotoutasyoudid,untilnow.Butletthisgetintoyour
headsthatthedenouncementswillneverstop.Andbecause
youarefamiliarwiththedenouncements,andifyouwill
showevidenceyouvechanged,youshalldothe
denouncementsonallthebanditsintheR.P.R.(themost
importantthingtheexecutionersaid).
Youshallleave omPitestitoGherla,someofyou.Some
alreadylefortheCanalanddidagoodjobthere,withthe
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denouncements.TheonesthatlebeforeyouatGherladid
agoodjobaswell,andnowsomeofyou,likeIsaid,are
leavingforGherlaaswell.Thedenouncementsdidntstop,
mindyou,andwearedecidedtocarryonwiththe
denouncementsforwardonallthebanditsinourRepublic.
Irecordedthestatementsofthisheinousassassinwiththe
memoryofacomputer.
Butwhatshockedusall,evenaerallwehadbeenthrough,
wasTurcanuspresencenearZeller.Youcouldntreadthe
certaintyofpoweronhisfaceanymore,ofselfcontrol,
arroganceandpride,butthea itudeofahumbleservant
towardstheprimalexecutioner.WhenIsawTurcanulike
this,strippedofthemythofpowerwhichheusedtoterrify
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uswith,Ibecameconvincedthathewasthemost
unfortunatevictimofthesatanicdoctrine.
Zellersstatement,thatthedenouncementsdidntstopand
wewillbetheoneswhowilldothemonallthebanditsin
theRomanianPopularRepublic,saideverything.Itwasthe
secondclue,aerthecluegivenbythemysterious
interrogatorin1949,thattheocculthaditsplan,
mathematicallydone,andthatitsnewcriminalstagewas
justopeningaheadofus.
So,ifAnnaPauker,TeohariGeorgescuandVasileLuca
wouldnthavebeenexiledwithStalinsauthorization,we,all
whohavebeenthroughPitestiandGherla,wewouldhave
become,becauseofthetorturesappliedtous,themost
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heinouscriminals,whowouldhavemurderedandtortured
everythingwhichwasconsideredrebelliousinourcountry.
Aertheplanwouldhavebeencarriedouttoits uition,we
wouldhavebeenexecutedtoo,asTurcanuandhis
henchmenwere.
LetsnotforgetthoughthatinthedramaatPitestiand
Gherla,theinstrumentusedtocarrytheoccultsplanto
fulllmentwasus,theonesinchains.Wewerethosewho
torturedeachother.Thecommunistsdidnttortureuswith
theirownhands,butbytheirorders,weourselvesapplied
thetorturetooneanother.OurleaderthoughwasTurcanu,
aconvicttowhomthegreenlightwasgiven,hebeinghelped
bytherstsixwhowillfullyacceptedtoapplythesetortures.
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Thereward:promisesof eedom,jobswithresponsibility
anddecorations.
InthestateofmindIndmyselfintoday,Ihonestlyconfess
thatIpityTurcanuandthosewhocollaboratedwithhim,
becausetheyallwerethevictimsofthemonstroussatanic
planofcommunism.Whatuseisintelligencetotheman
thatputsitintheserviceofevil?Luciferwasintelligenttoo,
butthisintelligenceheputintheserviceofthatwhich
opposedgood.Onlywisdom,whichisGodsgi,servesgood.
WhenIsawTurcanustandingbesideZeller,Ibecame
convincedthathewasnthappywithhowhismastertreats
him.Hewasprobablyconvincedthatoncethe
denouncementswillstop,hewillbetakendirectlytothe
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CentralCommi eeandoeredaministerfunction.Zeller
askedhimtocarryonwiththedenouncementsatGherla
too,onlyaerthishewouldreceivehisduereward.
But,asthisworldisntwhatitspeoplemakeittobe,butas
Godwantsittobe,Turcanuandhistoolswereexecuted,
fallingvictimstotheirownlawlessness.
Aerwads,untilthehalfofSeptember1951,mystayinPitestiwas
nothingbutaninterimstate.Thephysicaltorture,thethought
thatthedenouncementswillcontinuethere,wheretheywilltake
us,forcedustobelievethattheperspectivewasge ingmoreand
moredramatic.Wehadbelievedthatallthetortureswillend
alongwiththeendofthedenouncementsinPitesti.Butaer

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Zellersvisit,wewerestraightonterriedofwhatwillhappento
us.
Severaldaysbeforewele,weweretakentoamedicalvisit,
formal.Thenweweredividedinlots,eachlotforitsdestination.
On15thofSeptember,somelefortheleadminesandsomefor
Gherla.Iremainedinsidetheroomwithonly10people,
Magirescuincluded,whowasverysad.Aerthethought
readingtorture,hedidntspeakwithanyonealmost.
Inthedaysof1618SeptemberweletheodiousPitestiprison
odiousasthesouloftheonewhoseorderbuiltitthelastlotof
about90youngmen.

GHERLA (1)
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THE GHERLA FORTRESS

TheGherlaprsisonwassituatedonthehighwaythatconnects
thecityofDejtothecityofCluj,ontheshoreoftheLi leSomes
river.ItwasbuiltonthetimeoftheempressMariaTherezaof
Austria.Itsafortresssurroundedbyadeepditch,whichwas
lledwithwater omtheSomesriver.Ithadtwobuildingswith
oneooreach,ZarcaandtheSection,containingcellsandrooms
biggerandsmaller.
Aer1848,thelordsofTransylvaniabuiltathirdprisoninthe
shapeofanU,withacapacityofthousandsofinmates,with

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roomsaswellascells,netsofthickwire,asinPitesti,andanone
metercorridorbetweenthecells.
Onthecellside,atthetwoendsofthebuilding,2ndand3rd
oors,youcouldndbigroomswithanormalcapacityof70
people.Therehadbeenatimewhentheseroomswerepopulated
withover200inmateseach.Atbothends,onthegroundoor
and1stoors,inthesouththerewastheprisonkitchen,andto
thenorththechapel.Itisworthnotingthatthischapelwas
paintedinorthodoxstyle,whichprovesthatithadbeenbuiltfor
Romaniansonly.
WhenwerstarrivedinGherla,thechapelhadbeendissolved,
andtheicons,theveilandfurniturehadbeenbroughttothe
smallchapelinthemiddlebuilding(theSection).Thechapel
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insidethebigbuildinghadbeentransformedintoameeting
room.
Theprisonwasveryimposing.ThelocalsusedtocallitThe
YellowHouse.
Inthesouthside,closetotheprison,therewasacemetery,and
rightnexttoit,asmallercemetery,destinedfortheinmateswho
diedinsidetheprisonwalls.Theentrancetothisprison
impressedyoubecauseofitsmaingatebridge,wherethewater
ditchusedtobe.
Attheentrancetherewastheadministrationbuilding,aone
oorbuilding,and omthisbuilding,walkingonanarch,you
couldgettothetwostonepavedcourtyards.

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Thebigbuildinghadtwoentrances,onetotheinnercourtand
anothertotheworkshopscourt.
Theinnercourthadagateleadingtotheworkshopstothesouth.
Theprisonwascircledwithatall4meterswall,whichhadguard
towers omspottospot,thesecuritybeingensuredbythe
armedsoldiersinthem.Nearthewalltherewasa3meterswide
space,rakedandfencedbyabarbedwirefence,2meterstall.
Whenyousteppedintothemainbuilding,youwereimpressed
byitshugenessandthewirenetsthroughwhichyoucouldsee
omthegrounduptothe3rdoor.Thedoorsweremadeof
massivewood,enclosedinthicktin,havingtwostrongdeadbolts
onthem,upanddown,andabiglockforlockingusingakey.
Onthemiddleofthedoor,likeinotherprisons,youcouldnd
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thelargepeepholewhichwasusedtoservethemealsand,onthe
topofit,anothersmallerpeephole,whichwasbeingusedtolook
intotheroom.
Inthemiddleofthebuilding,in ontofthemainentrance,
therewerethestairswhichleadyou omthegroundoorupto
the3rdoor.
Thisfortress,thewayitwasbuiltandfenced,ensuredsuch
securitythatonlythoughtscouldyoutofit.
Thewindows1.5/1metershadthickironbarsonthem.
AlltheoneswhowenttoGherla,notonlyinthetimeofthe
denouncements,butevenbeforeandaerthat,cannotforget
thisprison,wheresomanyhavebeentorturedorkilled.

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THE FEELING OF DEATH

Ataroundthedateof18thofSeptember1951,weweretransported
withthelastlotofstudentsinforcedandhardlabor(the
majoritywere omforcedlabor) omthePitestiprisontothe
Gherlaprison.
Becausethetrainstationwasntfar omtheprison, omthe
trainwagonswewalkedtotheprisononfoot,beingescortedbya
strongsecurityofguardsandsoldiers,allarmed.
Themomentweenteredintheprison,withourfeetchained,and
whilelookinguptothe3rdoor,somethingunusualand
inexplicabletookovermywholebeing.IfeltlikeIwascaughtina
strongpliers,whichIcouldntgetoutof.Forthersttimeinmy
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lifeIhadthefeelingofimminentdeathandanimmeasurable
fearandterrorgotholdofme.
Thehugenessofthisprison,seenthroughthewirenets, omthe
groundooruptothe3rdoor,aswellastheperfectsilenceall
overtheplace,gaveyouthefeelingthattherearenopeoplehere,
butdeathistheonlymaster.
Thisfearofdeath,whichIdidnthaveonthe ontlines,norat
Pitesti,Iwasnowhavingin ontofmyeyes;afearmixedwith
horror,terroranddread.Thefearofdeathconcernsdeathonly;
butthisfearwhichruledovermewasmorethanthat:ithada
metaphysicalnature,itwassatanspossession,whoenteredin
me,sinceIstoppedprayingtoGod.

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InsteadofGodsgrace,whichIhadchasedaway ommysoul,I
leavoidwheresatansspiritnestled.Duringlife,Ihadonly
beena aidofGod.Iwasntscaredonthe ontlines,noteven
whenwegotsurrounded;thisfearIcouldntmakeanysenseofit.
Fear,horror,terror,dread,insidethephysicalworldtheyhavea
reasontoexist,butwhatIfeltandliveddidnt.
Aertheyreleasedthechains omourfeet,cu ingthemwith
thechiselontheanvil,andtherivets omourbraces,wewere
identied,accordingtotheleswehadbroughtwithus,and
assignedtothe3rdoor,tothelastroomnorthside,facingthe
bigroom,abovetheexchapel.
Onthecorridorsaswellasintherooms,youwereimpressedby
thetarnishofthemosaic,whichhadbeentarnishedbythe
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torturedprisoners.Inthepartofthebuildingwheretherewere
onlyrooms,theseroomshadmosaicoors.Forsleeping,inside
thebigrooms,thereweretworowsofbunks,andinthesmall
rooms,onlyonerowofbunksandaninterspace.

THE OUTSET OF TURCANU AND POPA


TANU
56monthsaerthestudentsarrived omPitestitoGherla,
duringwhichthedenouncementsandtheworkintheworkshops
continued,herewerealsobroughtothercategoriesofprisoners,
havingdiversesentencesandspecializedworkers,eachinhis
ownhandicra(Istatedearlierthatallworkwhichwascarried
outinGherlasworkshops:carpentry,mechanics,dyeing,
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bu ons,etc.,wasdestinedforthesovietarmy.Theworkwas
beingleadbytheorganizationalbureau,whosebosswas
Turcanu).
Onegoodday,atthestartofSummer1952,si ingaloneinthe
room,IwascalledtothebarbersbyMagirescu,whowas
pretendingtobeabarber;there,beingonlythetwoofus,he
revealedtomethatTurcanuandhisclosestcollaborators:Popa
Tanu,Martinus,Livinschi,Caba,Dumitrescu,Pop,Popescu
Aristide,Patrascanu,LicaPavaloaia,andtheothersleGherla.
Tomyquestion,iftheyaregoingtobereleased omprison,he
toldmehedidntknowanythingaboutthis.
Turcanuandhiscollaboratorsdeparturewasforus,theones
whoenduredthedenouncements,agreatday,whichweshall
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neverforget.Themostofus,especiallythosewholaboredinthe
workshops,wereconvincedthatthedenouncements,wontrepeat
inthewaytheywerecarriedoutuntilthen.Thisiswhywealso
feltagreatspiritualrelief.
SomeofusbelievedtheyweretakentoBucharestandrewarded
fortheworkcarriedout.Butmoreprecisely,noonehadany
ideawhathadhappenedwiththem.Aerwards,itwasrumored
theyhadbeentakeninsideavanduringthenight.
Some,theonesinthetorturecommi esinPitestilike:
Magirescu(legionnaire),TitusLeonida,DiacaandDobre(non
legionnaires),eventhoughtheyhadbeenTurcanus
collaborators,theydidntleavealongwithhim,factwhichhad

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manyindisarray,especiallybecausetheseones,probably,didnt
commitanymurders.
WhathappenedwithTurcanuandhiscollaboratorswefound
onlylaterinAiud,in1956.Butwe,themedicaluniversitylot
omIasi,hearditinJilava,whenwegottransferredtoJilava
omAiud,becauseofsomeofourcolleaguestrials.
Turcanu,sinisterandcontroversialgure,eventhoughabrilliant
studentinLawSchool,fellaspray(likeothershadbeenand
otherswhoagainwould)tohisownpride,beingdrivenbya
pathologicalego,realizinghisintellectualvalueandhiswill
whichtrampledoneverything;so,inorderforhimtoreachhis
goal,hedidntstop omthemostheinouscrimesand
bestialities.
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TheholyfathersoftheChristianchurchsaythatprideisthe
gravestsinofallsinswhichmancancommit,becausethis
satanicsindarkensthewilltodiscernandkillsthefeelingsof
loveandmercyinsidetheman.
PridedroveTurcanuandhiscollaboratorsmadandtheyforgot
thatallevildonetoyourfellowmanreturnshundredfoldonthe
perpetrator.
IearliersaidthatIdidntfearTurcanuasakiller.Imorelikely
pitiedhim,consideringhimtobeavictimofcommunistliesand
diversions.
ItalkedearlierabouttherelationshipsbetweenTurcanuand
PopaTanu,thechiefswhodisputedtheleadershipbetween

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themselvesandtheauthorshipofthedenouncementsinGherla.
Turcanuwasexecutedthough;Popanot.
AndIamsureofthefactthataerthethingsIlearnedincell
59inSuceavainthetimewesattogetherthatthismurderer,
PopaTanu,squeezedhimselfintotheLegionnaireMovement,
maybeduetoBogdanovici,havingsubversivegoals,andwell
speciedorders.Andheisoneofthosewhoevenaerthetrial
saidthatthedenouncementsinPitestiandGherlahadbeen
carriedoutbytheorderofHoriaSima.55
WhywasPopaTanuusedofallthepeople,inTurcanustrialand
VicaNegulescustrial,Idontknow.

55

Whichisablatantlie!HoriaSimawastheleaderofTheLegionnaireMovementandhadbeenoneofitsmost
brilliantmen.Thiswasthewellknowntac cofshi ingtheblameonthevic msbacks,acommunisttac c.And
HoriaSimahadbeenlonggone,sincethe40s,murderedincoldbloodbythecommunistsympathizers

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ButIdobelievethatonlytheinvestigationofthisodiouskiller
couldshedlightonthestatementsmadebytheonesinTurcanus
lot,giveninJilava,aertheyhadleGherla.Hecouldexplain
theordersanddispositionsreceived omNicolskiandZeller
best,aswellashowsomanyyoungmenwereassassinated,along
withBogdanovici.
ThedeparturesofTurcanuandhisclosestcollaboratorsin
GherlacoincidedwiththatofcaptainGheorghiu,theprison
warden,andthatoftheodiouspoliticalocerAvadanei.
DumitrescuandMarinawereconvicted,beingblamedforwhat
happenedinPitestiandexecutedaerwards,theysay.
Itwouldbedesirablenottoforgetthattheonlyonelealive,
beingalsotheonewhoexecutedtheoccultsplantodestroythe
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younglegionnaires,usingthedenouncementsinPitestiand
Gherla,isgeneralNicolski,thechiefofsecuritybetween1949and
1965.
WhenIlethecountry,in1989,hewasretiredandcomplained
thattheCeausescuregimedidntrewardhimenoughforhis
workandcontributiontotheparty.
Athingisundeniablethough:aerTurcanuleGherla,theone
whocontrolledandleadthedenouncements,wascolonelZeller,
Nicolskisdirectdeputy.Theysayhewaslaterfoundshotina
Bucharestcemetery.Ifhewaskilled(anddidntkillhimself )it
wasdoneattheoccultsorders,byNicolski,hisdisappearance
erasinganyocialtraceregardingthedenouncements.

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Whatisknownalso,isthatwhenTurcanuandhiscollaborators
arrivedinJilava,Nicolskiandthoseocialswhohadbeen
collaboratingwithhimdisappeared omtheministryoces,
otherstakingtheirplacesinstead.TheseaskedTurcanuandhis
collaboratorstowilfullywritestatementsofhowtheyproceeded
duringdenouncements,howtheyacted,whatmethodsthey
used,theresultsthatwereobtainedbythemandhowmuchtime
theyhadtotortureeachandeveryyoungmaninordertoobtain
thoseresults.
Aertheyextractedallofthisinformation omTurcanuandhis
collaborators,alltheblameociallyfellinTurcanuandhis
collaboratorslaps.Theirownstatementsweresuciently
accusingandtheywereeachblamedofallthemurders,tortures
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andmethodsusedinthedenouncements.Aerwards,the
prosecutingocialswereagainreplacedbyothers,andtheir
replacementswereassignedwiththeformingofapanelofjudges
who,inoneofthemostsecrettrials,sentencedthemtodeath
andexecutedthem.
Turcanuwastheonewho,usingdenouncements,madethemost
completeinvestigationoftherebellioninRomania,atPitestiand
Gherla.Also,usinghim,thetransformationofsomeyoung
legionnairesandnonlegionnairescouldbeachieved,intokillers
andinformers,inprisonaswellasoutsideprison.
Ayounglegionnaire(whosenameIwontsay,tonotexposehim),
beinginterrogatedbyasuperiorsecurityocerinsidetheprison
inAiudNicolskiwasntthechiefofsecurityanymorethen
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relatedthatthesecurityocercondentiallyrevealedtohimthat
Turcanuneveradmi edhereceivedorder omabroadtostart
thedenouncements,sayingthathehimselfalongwithNicolski
plannedthis.TurcanuhonestlybelievedNicolskiinallthethings
Nicolskitoldhim;eventhepromisesNicolskimadetohim,
admi ingonlylaterinthetrialthathehadbeendeceived.He
alsosaidthenthat,ofalltheyoungpoliticalprisonerswhodid
thedenouncementshewastheonlyonetoblame.Andifwhat
Turcanustatedistrue,thenhemustbelookeduponina
dierentlight.Anditisalsomystrongconvictionthat,the
occultsplanregardingthedenouncementsoftheyoungmenin
Romaniasprisonsforesaw omthestartthedisappearanceof

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someofthepoliticalprisonersinvolvedinthisoperation,aswell
asthedisappearanceoftheocialswhosupervisedit.
ConcerningTurcanuswife,shedivorcedhimwhenshefoundout
whathehadbeendoinginPitesti.LaterwhenIhadbeen
released,beinginSuceava,Ifoundoutthatshereceivedher
husbandsdeathcerticatein1956,sent omOradea, oma
streetaddressnumberthatinrealitydidntexist.
Theydidthesamethingwithmealso,noticingmyfamilythatI
passedaway.Whenmyfamilyreceivedthenews,theydidmy
burialserviceatthefamilytomb.So,beingsymbolicallyburiedas
well,Icouldconsidermyselfapoltergeisttoday.Andavery
inconvenientone.

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Somethingsimilarhappenedtomymothersbrother,Vasile
Dascalescu,anexmemberofthePeasantParty,sentencedto20
yearsinprisontoo,forsomestatementshemadeagainstthe
Russians,inMay1944.Havinganoutrightanticommunist
a itudeinprison,hewasmurderedinsidetheprisoninOcnele
Mari.56Ipersonallysawthedeathcerticatewhichhiswife
received:ithadbeensent omthatcity, omastreetwhose
numberdidntexist,factdiscoveredbyhisdaughter,Elena,who
wentthere, omFalticeni.Iknowothercaseslikethisaswell,
omBucharestandIasi,offamilieswhoreceiveddeath
certicates omthedierentcitiesofthecountry.
AerallIhaveexperienced,seen,heardbymeandmycomrades,
IconcludethatTurcanuwashimselfavictimaswell,beingthe

56

English:TheBigMines

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toolofthedenouncements,usedbycertainMoscowforums
supportedbyAnnaPauker,Teohari,LucaandNicolski,forthe
moralandphysicalassassinationoftheyounglegionnaires,who
hadbeenpreparedandeducatedfortheghtagainstany
antichristianandantinationalevil.
Hereareafewnamesoftheonesthatwillfullycollaboratedwith
Turcanu,nevertakingevenoneslapandwhowereinvolvedinhis
trial,peopleIpersonallyknow:
PopaAlexandru(Tanu),studentinIasi;Livinschi,studentinIasi;
Caba,highschoolgraduate omCampulungMoldovenesc.
Then,theoneswhocollaboratedwithhimbecauseofcontinuous,
intolerabletortures:DanDumitrescu,studentinIasi;Pop
Cornel,studentinCluj;PopescuAristotel,graduateofthe
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MedicalUniversityinBucharest;NutiPatrascanu,studentin
Bucharest;Vasile(Lica)Pavaloaia,student,forestrysubengineer;
Juberian,studentinTimisoara.
OfallthepeopleIknowwhohadbeenpartofthetorture
commi ees,IdontknowifanyonewasinvolvedinTurcanus
trial,besidesZahariaNicolae,thechiefofthetorturecommi ee
inbasementroomno.3,inPitesti(whowetalkedaboutbefore),
DobreVasile,studentinCluj,aswellasDiaca,studentin
Bucharest.ItwassaidthatinTurcanuslothadbeen36
collaborators;thenumberseemsexaggeratedtomethough.
PopaTanuisoneoftheprisonerswhoarestillalive,werepartof
Turcanustrial,andknowtheexactnumberoftheonesinvolved.
So,Turcanutookthesecretofthismonstrouscrimewithhimin
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hisgrave.Thenthereismeandmycomradesstillalivewhoare
theremainingundeniablewitnessesofthethingsthatoccurred
then,inthedenouncements.
IfthethingsTurcanustatedduringhislastdaysandespecially,
rightbeforehisexecution,aretruebeingtheonlyonewho
spokewithNicolskifacetofacethisrepresentsthe
incontestableproofthathewastheinstrumentwhichtheoccult
used ombehindtheshadows.
Turcanuwasnttheonetostatethathereceivedorder omHoria
Sima,throughVicaNegulescu,toperformthedenouncements
ontheyounglegionnaires.Why?BecauseTurcanuwasnta
legionnaire!

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Itisworthnotingthatnopoliticalpersonality omthepeasant
party,liberals,socialdemocratsorothercategories,withor
withoutparties,wasinvolvedinthetrialwiththeaccusationthat
theyorderedtheyounglegionnairesinhisorganizationto
performthedenouncementsinPitestiandGherla.Theonlyones
bearingthisaccusationwerethelegionnaires:thelegion
commanderVicaNegulescu,CosticaOprisansuperiorofthe
BrotherhoodofTheCrosscountrywideandotherlegionnaire
leaders.Thesetupofthisabjecttrialreachedtheheightsof
hypocrisy,ofliesandcommunistdiversion,whodissolvedthe
ideaofjusticeshiingtheblameonthevictims.Such
impertinence,sadismandshamelessness,onlyamonstrosity
suchascommunismcoulduncover.
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ThesamelawlessnessoccurredatKatyn,orintheTancabesti
forest,whereCorneliuCodreanuwasassassinatedalongwithhis
13comradesinthenightofSaintAndrewtheApostle,andthe
samein2122September1939,whentheslaughterinallthe
campscountrywidetookplace.
Thedenouncementswereperformedalmostexclusivelyonthe
younglegionmembers,students,pupils,workersandpeasants.
EightypercentoftheyoungprisonersinPitestiandGherlawere
legionnairestudents.Iconfessitkeepingmyhandonthecross
becauseIknewthemall,legionnairesornolegionnaires.The
othercategoriesofyoungpeoplewentthroughPitestiandGherla
onlyaccidentally,theclearproofofthisbeingthattheoccult
targetedonlytheyounglegionnaires.
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AertheRussiansleRomania,in1958,GheorghiuDej,under
whosecommandsomanyevilsperpetuated,gaveadecreeof
pardonthoughtoallthepoliticalprisoners,thefamousdecreeof
1964.Adecreewhich,unfortunately,wasntdoneearlierbythe
ChristianAntonescu,norbythehistoriansandoldChristian
politicalpeopleofRomania,neitherbyHisMajestyTheKingof
allRomanians,wholethelegionnaires,aer1944,inprisons.
Fromthem,theRomanianBurahTescovicitookcontrolhaving
theirlesandthekeystoallthecells,sotheycanbelethereto
perpetuallyrotbythehundredsofthem.
Thesamehistorianspaidforthesinofsellingtheirfellowmen
though,dyinginthesamecommunistprisons.

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Duringtheinterrogationsandstatementspriortohisdeath
sentenceandexecution,knowinghimlikeothersdidnt,Iam
convincedthatTurcanurealizedhehadbeencheated.
TurcanuclaimedhewasntaChristian,althoughhehadbeen
baptizedandmarriedlikeaChristianand,ontopofitall,he
wasraisedbyhismotherinthespiritofChristianmorals.So,itis
possiblethatthesefactorsmayhavecontributedtohis
repentance.
Myexperiencegainedduringthedenouncementsandinallthe
prisonyearstellmethateventhemostodiousmurderer,
scumbagandsinner,ifheadmitshismistake,honestlyrepents
andasksGodforforgiveness,cansavehissoul.Whatisnot
possiblewithmen,ispossiblewithGod.Thisistheimpenetrable
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mysteryofChristianity,ofGodsloveandmercy,andthereason
hesavedtheworld.
And,ifTurcanuhadpangsofconscienceandfeltsorryfor
everythinghedid,admi ingheistheonlyonetoblameofthe
thingswhichhappenedatPitestiandGherla,askingGodfor
forgiveness,itisimpossiblethathewasntforgiven.Icannot
thinkotherwise.
So,iftheinformationregardingTurcanuslastdaysaretrue:his
refusaltolie,statingthathereceivedanorder omsomeoneto
performthosedenouncementsandadmissionofhisownguilt,I
havetheunshakableconvictionthatGodhadmercyonhimand
forgavehissins.

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Ifhispathologicalegowasturnedintohumilityandrepentance,
whyshouldnthebeforgiveninthelastmomentofhislife,like
therobberonthecross?
Thesamemercymayhavedescendedaswelluponthosesouls
whohadbeenpartofhislot,whosinnedthesame.
AndifIbelievecorrectlyandBogdanoviciwassaved,admi ing
tohismistake,thinkingofhimselfastheinitiatorofthe
reeducationandguilty,inaway,forthesueringofsomany
youngpeople,whyshouldntIbelievethatTurcanu,havingdone
allthosethings,wassavedinthelastmoment?
I,asaChristianconvincedthatsomemysteriescannotbe
protrudedwiththemind,Istronglybelievethatallpeoplecanbe
saved.
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ThereaderremembersperhapsthatwhenIwasescortedby
Turcanu omthebasementroomno.3tothe4thhospitalroom,I
wantedtotellhimforamomentthatheisalsoavictimofsome
sort.Ididntdarethough,forthefearoftheconsequences;as
possessedashewashewouldhavekilledmethereonthespot.
Ididnthatehimthough,likeIdidnthatethosewhoacted
directlyuponme,andIdidnthatethosewhotrialedand
sentencedmeto16yearsofdetention.BecauseGod<<forgivesus
ourdebts,aswealsohaveforgivenourtransgressors>>.

JUBERIAN AND REK

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AerTurcanuandtheothersle,thepoliticaland
administrativeleadershipofGherlasworkshopswasleinthe
handsofJuberianandRek.Wecouldneverndout,noteven
laterinAiud,whopassedonthisrighttothem.
Juberian,ayoungmanwithrealintellectualpossibilities,bornin
Banat,hadbeenastudentinTimisoara.Iknewhimduringthe
denouncementsinPitesti,inroomno.2ongroundoor,atthe
startofSummerin1950.
Whentheveofushadbeenbroughttothatroom,Iremember
hewasthrowncompletelydisguredonthecementbesideus.
Hecouldntstandupanymore;Imemorizedhisname omthe
torturecommi eechief,Prisacaru,whoannouncedthathe
broughtoneofthemostfanaticlegionnairesinsidetheroom.
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Havealookathim,wewillcurehimofhislegionnaire
fanaticismforgood.Andthisisonlythebeginning,he
continued.Seeinghimthenandknowingwhatwevebeen
through,itwasterrifyingformetothinkofwhatisinstorefor
thisyoungman.
Juberian,inhisagony,stillhadthepowertomemorizethenames
ofthosevewhoweresi ingonthecementoor,announcedby
Prisacaruandespeciallymyname,beingthrownrightnextto
me.Inthosedaysthatfollowedhewasntgivenanyfoodorwater
todrink.Buteveniftheygavehim,hecouldnthaveswallowedit.
DuringthetimeIsharedtheroomwithhim,afewdays,he
wasnttorturedanymore,becauseitwouldhavemadeno
dierence,soweakenedhewas.ButIdidndout omother
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comradesthataerwele,Juberianhadbeencruellytortured
andtormentedbecausehewasoneofthoseyounglegionnaires
whodidntgiveupeasily.
Thethingsthatoccurredthere,untilwelePitesti,andthe
thingsIsawwithmyowneyeshappeningtohiminthatroom,
explain,amongotherthings,whyhefell.
Icannotrealizewhyhewasputinchargeoftheorganizational
bureauinGherla.
Hisimageofbeingdisguredandspreadacrossthecement
oor,unconscious,lyingbesideme,inroomno.2onJune1959,
remainsinmymind.ItistruethatIrememberhimwhenhewas
chiefoftheorganizationalbureauthesame.TherearethingsI
cannotforget.Hewasdeartome,becauseIknewhimandfelt
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himbesideme,disguredandnotmoving,onthecementoor
inroomno.2.
InGherla,whenmadnesscouldhavebeenfataltome,Juberian
savedme.Andasachiefoftheorganizationalbureau,objectively
speaking,Juberianwasverycorrectandright.
AboutRek,IonlyknowhewasaRomanian.Icannottellyouhis
origins,inordernottohurtorprovokefeelingswhichhave
nothingtodowiththeseconfessions.
AerJuberianleGherla,Rekwasleasthechiefofthe
organizationalbureauuntiltheendof1953.
Asacrasman,youhadthingstodiscusswithRek,andI
noticed,duringthetimeIworkedintheworkshops,thathewas
indiscriminatetowardsallotherethnicgroups.
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AsfarastheassassinationofFluerasisconcerned,Idontknow
andIamnotsurethatRekandJuberianweredirectlyinvolved,
thephysicalandmoralauthorbeingthecaptainGoiciu,
nominatedwardenoftheGherlaprison,insteadofGheorghiu.
Toemphasizethisopinion,Iwillfurtherrelatesomeevents.

GOICIU AND MIHALCEA

The1948arrestfoundGoiciuasawardeninGalatisPenitentiary.
TheprisonerswhowenttheresaidthatGoiciuwasntRomanian
andthatheisbraggingheisa iendofGheorghiuDej57,
workingwithhimforthecommunistpartyattheC.F.R.

57

Apresidentbackthen

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58

workshopsinGalati.And,ifwhathesaidwastrue,ofcourse

Dejoeredthatimportantfunctiontothismonster,borntobea
murderer,whodidnthaveanythingelseinside,butthe
inclinationtotortureandkillpeople.
ThosewhoknewhiminGalatiwereterriedwhentheyheardof
him.Hehadatremendouspleasuretokillandtorturepriestsor
sonsofpriestsandfewofthosewhowenttotheprisoninGalati
escapedalive omhishand.Thereareeyewitnesses,whostood
inthesamecellwiththesonofapriest,whenhewaspraying,
surprisedbyGoiciuthroughthepeephole.TheysaythatGoiciu
enteredthecell,stretchedthesonofthepriestontheoorand
crushedhimunderhisfeetuntilhedied.Hewasabrute,atype

58

Romaniasrailroads

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ofproletarywithpoliticalpowerwhichheabusedofanytime,
executingtheorderstodestroy.
SoGoiciuwasknowninallthecommunistprisonsasoneofthe
mostodiousexecutionersandkillers.Youcouldclearlyreadthe
pleasuretotormentandtortureonhisface.Itissaidthat,while
hewasawardeninGalati,IuliuManiuwasbroughtinthe
prison,thepresidentofthePeasantNationalParty,whomhe
horriblytortured.
Atthesametimeayounglegionnairewasbroughtthere,who
hadbeeninthedenouncementsatPitesti.Icannotdivulgehis
name,becauseofthesituationinsidethecountry,andIaskhim
aswelltonotmakehimselfknown.Hehadanexceptional
intellectualbackgroundandaverydelicatephysicalconstitution,
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whichmadethetorturesinPitestiveryhardforhimtowithstand
sohenallygaveup.Aerhegaveupthough,hewassentto
GalatibyNicolskiinordertoextractinformation omManiu
andndcertainthings omhim.
Andheheard omManiuallkindsofthings:facts,events,
regrets,futureplansandsomethingIwilltellyoufurther.
Eventhoughhehadbeensenttherewithanabjecttask,thisman
stillhadthevirtue,onceheenteredthecellwhereManiuwas,to
tellManiuthepurposehewassentfor:Misterpresident,Ihad
beentoPitestiandterriblethingsarehappeningtherewiththe
younglegionnairesandwithotheryoungstudents.Ihadbeen
torturedtooandIhavebeensent omBucharesttoextract
information omyouandmemorizeeverythingyouwilltellme.
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So,pleasetellmewhateveryouthinkIshouldknow,soyoudont
havetosuer.
And,foralmostanyear,duringwhichhesharedthecellwith
Maniu,thatyoungmandiscussedeverythingwithhim.
Moreover,sinceherstcameintoManiuscelluntilhele
Galati,heevengavehistinysliceofbreadtohim,tellinghimhe
isyoungandcansuerprisonbe er.Maniuacceptedhisoer
veryreluctantlyandonlybecausetheyoungmaninsistedso
much,andwhenitwastimeforthemtogetseparated,theold
manhuggedhimand,crying,hetoldhim:Irespected
Codreanu,knowinghishonor,hisunbendingfaithandhis
politicalview.But,asamanandChristianIwonderifinthe
samecircumstances,ayoungpeasantpartymemberwouldhave
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treatedCodreanuinthewayyouhavetreatedme?I,dear iend,
onlyknowyou omslanders;nowIknowyouforreal,thisiswhy
Itoldyouwhattodeclaretothepeopleofourtimeaboutme.
AndthethingsyoudidformeIwontforgetaslongasIlive.
Aerthisemotionalscene,theyoungmanstillhadtimetoreply
toManiu:Misterpresident,thethingsItoldyouandwhatIdid
foryou,Ididntdobecauseofmyegoorpoliticalinterests.Ididit
rstofallbecauseIamaRomanian,thenbecauseIama
Christian,andbecauseIlovemycountryandnationasmuchas
youdo.Wearesueringinsidethesameprisonforourpolitical
views,forthegoodandjusticeoftheRomanianpeople.
Youcangettoknowpeopleverywellthewaytheyreallyare,when
youchangetheirlivingconditions,whenyoutakeawaytheirjobs
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andstatusquo,theirfortunesandtheirperspectiveofbeingwho
theyare.Inotherwords,youcantrulyknowamanonlywhen
yousubmithimtotrials,temptations,sueringsandeventothe
lasttrialofdeath.
And,memorizingwhattheyounglegionnairesaidalso,weall,
theyoungpeoplewhoendureddenouncementsandexceptional
lifeconditions:torture,degradation,sueringandhumiliation,
hunger,cold,punishments,restrainandpatience,knowingany
momentwecoulddie,becameconvincedthat,asCorneliu
Codreanusaid:Thepurposeofhumanexistenceisnotlife,but
theresurrectioninthenameandthroughJesusChrist.
NowbacktoGoiciu,whomIgottoknowatGherlaandIhada
fearandadreadofhim,likeIhadforfewpeopleduringmylife.
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Itwasnotrandomhewasputuptothistask,oftorturingand
killing,intheprisonsofGalatiandGherla,thebestpeoplethis
nationhad.
Inthesummerof1952,oncehewasnominatedasthewarden,he
orderedthecarpentryworkshop,thatiswhereIwasalso
workingtobuildseveralcarcersandthemtobeinstalledatthe
groundoorofthebigbuildinginsidetheprison.Thereall
prisonerscouldseethem;theywereontheleside,asyou
enteredintothemainbuilding,andlookedlikesomeboxes
made omwoodenboards2meterstallandsotight,thataman
couldbarelytinthemstandingup.Theywerealsocalledthe
deathcarcers.

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In1952,GoiciuandlieutenantmajorMihalcea,thefactorychief,
werebeatingpeopleverybad.
Mihalceaorderedmetodrawasketchofthecarcer.Idraeda
sketchof1x1m.Seeingit,hetrampledmeunderhisfeet,then
hetookthemeterandshowedtomethedimensionsofthecarcer
:40x40cm.Aeritwasmade,Iwaslockedinsideitforthree
days,inthelastdaysharingitwithanotherconvict.
OhGod!Howmanyvaluableprisonersdiedinsidethem!And
thereasonofthepunishmentswasridiculous:eithertheconvict
didntassumethecorrectarmypositionstandingstraightwith
thebonetinhishandwhenGoiciuwaspassingby,eitherbecause
theydidntshoutLonglive,wardensir,eitherbecauseyou
didntpickupthegarbage omtheoor,eitherbecauseyou
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milledacertainpartwithasmalldeviation,orbecauseyou
milleditonemillimitermore.
AsifforGoiciu,sadismrepresentedtheclasswaressenceofthe
proletariat.Thosepunisheddidntgetanythingtoeatordrink.
Andsomewereforgo enthereuntiltheyfoundthemdeadof
halfalive.
Whenthisexecutionerpassedinthe ontofyou,youcould
sensebehindhimtherewassomethingwhichpermanentlyurged
himtotortureandkill.Isawwithmyowneyeshow,inthe
workshopcourt,thismonsterunleashedhimselfevenuponone
ofhisocers,orderinghimtogetdownonthegroundand
standupagainin ontoftheconvicts,untilthepoorman,full
ofmud,didnthavethestrengthtoraiseupagain.Theconvicts
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wereveryoenbeaten,dozenseveryday,someofthem
remainingcrippledforlife.Icannotforgetthebeatingthe
engineerSecaratook.
Howmuchofadierencebetweenhimandthewarden
Gheorghiu!Onewasbornonlytotorturehisfellowmanandkill
him,inthenameofcommunistjustice,andtheother,toallow
hisfellowmantopullhimselftogether.
TheotherassassinoftheGherlaprison,Goiciusreplica,known
assuchbyallthosewhowentthere,wasMihalcea.Hewas
Goiciusassistantandresponsiblewithproduction.
ButIamsosicktotalkabouthimthatIwillforgethim.
FLUERASS MURDER

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OldmanFlueras,acarpenter omArad,exmemberinthe
InternationalSocialistCommi eeandexsecretaryoftheSocial
DemocratPartyofTitelPetrescu,hedidntadheretothe
CommunistPartyalongwithLotharRadaceanu(Wurtzelbaum)
but,heremainedloyaltoTitelPetrescusP.S.D.59
ArrestedalongwithTitelPetrescu,hehadanhonestandagreat
commonsensedmanbehavior.IveknownhimatGherlainthe
followingcircumstances.
AttheendofSpring1952,Ididntgetouttowork,beingsick;I
wastakenoutofthecellbytheguardtosweeptheprisonyard
and,alongwithotherinmatesinmysituation,tobringdrinking

59

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waterwiththegourd, omtheyard.Thechiefsofthe
organizationalbureaubackthenwereJuberianandRek.
Onegoodday,beingtakenoutintothecourtyardtosweep,the
engineerCristescu,warinvalid,responsiblewiththecleaningof
theyard,sendsmetogetabroom omthemiddlebuildingof
theprison.Thisbuildingwassituatedinthesouthside,across
thekitchen,wherethechapelwas;theiconsandallthefurniture
hadbeenbroughthere omthechurchonthegroundoorin
thenorthsideofthebigbuilding.
IremainedbaedwhenIsawanoldmanthere,onhisknees
andwithhishandsclenched.Hewasprayingin ontofanicon.
Hearingthenoiseofmyshoes,heturnedhisheadand,seeingI
amaprisonerjustlikehim,signaledmetocomecloser.With
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shynessIgotclosetohimandkneeleddownalso.Then,theold
manwhisperedtomethatheisFluerasthesocialist.
Aerhenishedhisprayer,Iaskedhim,confused,howcomehe,
whoshouldhavebeenanatheistaccordingtohisview,isstill
prayingtoGod?
Theoldman,withavoicethatwarmedmyheart,toldmethatall
ofthisoccuredinhisyoungeryears,andthatithadbeen
nothingbutalie,andnowheisprayingtoGodsoHecanforgive
him.
Duringthattime,mymadnesswasstilladvancedandmy
a empttopraydidntwork,becausemyprayerswerespoken
withmylipsandinnowwayfeltwithmyheart.

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BeforeIle,Iwhisperedtotheoldmantobecautious,because
therearealotofinformersaroundandsomebastardcouldrat
himout.Heansweredmethatheisnota aidanylongerandI
lehimalone.Hehadthepossibilitytocometothechapeland
pray,because,alongwithotheroldandsickpeople,hecleaned
theprisonyardandthekitchen.
MyencounterswithFluerasatthechapelrepeatedseveraltimes.
Hewasalwaystellingmetocomecloser,tositandpraywithhim
sidebyside.HeaskedmeonceifIamorthodoxandifIbelievein
God.Iansweredyes.ButbecauseoftheshorttimespanInever
gottotellhimwhatIhadonmymind,andallIhadbeen
through.

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Godisfeltwiththeheartandnotwiththelips.Thecold
reasoningcannotfeelGod.Onlythepure,warmandfulloflove
heartcanfeelHim,becauseHeislove.So,mylipsweresayingthe
prayer,butmyheartwascoldandemptiedofGodspresence.
FlueraswastheexactoppositeofwhatIfeltandthisiswhyhe
saidtheprayerwithawarmheartoverwhelmedbythepresence
ofGod.
Inourencountersinthatchapel,IfeltoldmanFluerassoclose
andwarmnearme,asifmyoldmanwasstandingbesideme,
withhiswhitebeard.
Fluerasbelievedarduouslyandhewaswaitingtoleavethis
world,whileI,withmyicecoldheart,wantedtostaymore.

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Asmymadnessprogressed,andthecellwallscrushedmywhole
being,Iwantedtogetoutatanycostoutsideandwork.
MeetingJuberianinthecourtyard,Iaskedhimtotakemeoutso
Icanwork.Juberianmeasuredmewithhiseyesandsaidhe
knowsIamsick.Iansweredhimthatitistrue,butIcouldnt
suerthecellanylonger.Helookedatmeandpromisedthathe
willdosomethingaboutit.
SincethismeetingwithJuberian,IdidntgettoseeFlueras
anymore,butonce.Thewordshesaidtomethenringinmyears
evennow:Myboy,theyarealllies.SeethatyoudontloseGod,
becauseifso,youvelosteverything.
Anexampleofanhonestwithhimselfman,thisFlueras;aman
whosaidthatallhebelieveduntilthenhadbeenallalie,besides
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God,WhoisTheAbsoluteTruth.AstheEcclesiastessays:
MeaninglessMeaningless!saysTheTeacherU erly
meaningless!Everythingismeaningless!,besidesGod.
Aerseveraldays,IwokeupwithJuberianinsidemycell;hewas
askingmetofollowhim.Oncethereinthecarpentryworkshop,
toatablewherethepartsforthemechaniccarpentrywerebeing
madeintheirbruteform,hetoldmeinthefutureIshallbea
gager,whilewarningmeatthesametimetobecarefulbecauseif
Igageonepartwrongitwillcostmetimeinoneofthecarcerson
thegroundoor.HewenttohisoceandIwenttothemechanic
carpentry.
IsawFluerasforsometimeinthecourtyard,whenIwasleaving
orgoingbacktotheshop.IwasmakingsureIcouldbeseenby
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himandthatIcouldseehimalso.Iwassalutinghimwitha
specialrespect.Ievenadmiredhim,because,eventhoughhehad
beenanatheist,returnedtotherightfaith,kneelingdownin
ontofChristsIcon.
Aerseveralweeksofworkingasagager,Ifoundonmytable
insidetheworkshopbeingwri enindistortedcapitalle ers:
ThemurderersRekandJuberiankilledFlueras.Iremained
petried.IcouldntbelievemyeyesandIdidntbelieveitinthat
moment.Ididntbelievethat,aerTurcanu,Popa,Livinschi,
Cabaandtheothersle,Juberianwascapableofkilling
someone.
IamcertainthatthemurderofFlueraswasordered om
Bucharest,andthemoralandphysicalauthorswerentJuberian
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andRek,butGoiciu.ProbablybecausesomeonefoundFlueras
kneelingdown,in ontofChristsicon,thenhewenttoinform
Goiciu,andGoiciuhadthepretextofkillinghim,ashedidin
Galatitosomanypriestsortothosehecaughtthroughthe
peepholekneelingdown,sayingtheirprayers.
OnlyGodknowswhokilledFlueras,forthecrimethathewas
prayingtoGod,inorderforhisunfaithfulnessandsinstobe
forgiven.Thosewords: omnowonIwontbea aidanymore,
dramaticallyringinsidemyearseventoday.

GAGER

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Theworkofagagerinsideamechaniccarpentryworkshophas
itsimportance,becauseeverypartbeingdoneatthemachines
rsthastobemillimetricallysketched,atcertaindimensions.
Thiswork,becauseofthea entionitrequired,helpedmeforget
theburdenwhichpressedonme.Itrequiredli lephysicaleort,
butgreatresponsibility;asmallmistakecouldleadmetothe
deathcarcers.
IhadawakenthecuriosityofmycomradeswhoknewIwassick.
Theycouldseemege ingbacktowork,butnotthehardwork
insidethemanualcarpentryworkshop,butsomethingeasy,
replacingahighschoolgraduate,whowaspartofthetorture
commi ees,asanassistanttoPopaTanuandrecentlylefor

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Gherla.Honestlyspeaking,theworkasagagerwasafavor,not
donetoanyone.
IwasconvincedthatJuberian,inhisprivacy,hadremainedthe
samemanIsensedhewasinroomno.2.Ididntunderstand
thoughwhyhedidthisfavortome;maybemercyandthe
memoryofbeinginthesametortureroom.
Themachinesinthemechaniccarpentryworkshopwere
occupied,inthethreeshis,onlybystudentsingeneral,soIwas
easilyacclimatized.Butinlife,thehappymomentsareshort
lived,momentsandhourspasslikelightning,andthesuerings,
noma erhowli letheywouldlast,youfeelasendless.Andif
thesueringispermanent,lifebecomesalmostimpossibleand,

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whenyoulivethefearthatthesueringsarewithnoend,you
preerdeath.
TheworkIwasdoingbackthenhadbeenalightofhopeinthe
sueringandterrorwhichgnawedatmeandgroundmewith
everypassinghour.Ioensawnothingin ontofmyeyesbuta
gravewithnoconoracross.
Thehappymomentspassquickly.Ihadafearthathadtobe
conrmed.Theworkshopscapacitywasenlargedandthethree
workshisbecamepermanent.ThatsprobablywhyJuberian,
beforeheleforGherla,calledmeintotheorganizational
bureauamdannouncedmehewaschangingmyjob: oma
gager,Iwasgoingtobeatimekeeper.Thenewsfellonmelike
lightning.
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TIMEKEEPER

Astimepassed,alltheconvictsfoundoutthatthestudents,
pupilsandapartoftheworkersareinformers.Thissaddened
me,butitalsomademeglad,helpingmeavoidthediresituation
ofanyoneconfessingsomethingtomeandIbeingforcedtospill
thebeansoutaboutthatperson.AndI,beingatimekeepera
jobhatedanddespisedbyallthepeoplewhoworkedthere,
becausethisjobwasonlyheldbyreeducatedpersonsandsome
whohadbeenpartoftorturecommi eesatPitestiandGherla
whodaredtoconfesssomethingtome?
SoIfoundmyselfbeingputinapositionIdidntdeserveand
didntwishfor.ButI,havingnothingtodowiththosewhowere
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normallydoingthiswork,morallyspeaking,ItoldJuberianI
cannotacceptit,pretextingthatIdidntownthestrengthto
focusanymoreonthemathcalculus.Iaskedhimtorethinkhis
decision.IneverywayIinsisteditdidntma er,hisdecisionwas
nal.AndIwasconvincedthatbeingknownbyhimduringthe
denouncements,ashealsoknewmyphysicalcondition,hewas
guessingwhyIamnotacceptingthiswork.Inthatmomentthe
thoughtcrossedlikelightningthroughmymindthathewantsto
destroywhatwasleofmydignity.Myrelationshipswiththe
prisonerswhowereworkingandmycomradestudentswould
becometotallydierent.
Hearingmyrefusaltobeatimekeeper,hethreatenedmethathe
willsendmebacktomanualcarpentry,wherethephysicaleort
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wasabovemyphysicalstrength.And,becauseIcouldntaccept
thecellorthemanualcarpentry,allthatremainedwastoaccept
Juberiansproposition.Itcouldbethathewantedmywellbeing.
Andbeinganinformerwasntthesamethingwithbeinga
timekeeper.
Thetimekeeperjobwasnthard, omthephysicaleortpointof
view,butitdidrequiregreatresponsibility.Youhadtocheckthe
partsthattheworkersweremaking.
Ialwaysacceptedtobetestedandndoutasolution,because
therefusalmeansthefeartobetested.Andmytrying,takento
certainboundaries,hadthereasonthatIdidntcapitulateright
omthestart.But,tryingtoooenandtoohardmanytimes
grindsyourbeingsomuchthatnothingisleofitanymore.
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WhenIstartedtoachievesomethinginmylife,Ineverwronged
another,envyinghimforhisposition,jobandfortunehemay
havehad.Envywasnevermymaster.Iknewaboutthe
commandment:Youshallnotcovetyourneighborshouse;you
shallnotcovetyourneighborswife,norhismanservant,norhis
maidservant,norhisox,norhisdonkey,noranythingthatis
yourneighbors.Ihavealwaysbeensatisedandreconciledwith
thatwhichIhadorcoulddomyself.
Butasatimekeeper,Iwasbeingputinthesituationofchecking
theresultsofanexhaustingphysicalworkandpreciselyrecord,
honestlyandobjectively,whattheprisonersweredoing.Andthis
meantnottocareaboutthetimeorobligationstheprisonerwas
submi edto.Andthesewerekillinghim.
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Untilthatmoment,whenIacceptedthejobofatimekeeper,a
shrewdthoughtwaserodingmyconscience,provokingmeto
revoltagainstdestiny,againstmypositionanda ituderegarding
thistrial.ButIcametotheunshakeableconclusion,thatthe
destinyisGodswillintertwinedwiththewillofthe eeman.
Didsomeonecoercemeortorturemeorpromisemesomething
inordertomakemealegionnaireandstarttheghtagainstthe
communisthydra?No!WhenIbeganmyactivity,in1946,didnt
theytellmeIcouldendupinprisonormaybeevendead,andI
acceptedofmyown eewill?Sure!Andthen,wasitGodsfault
thatI,withoutbeingforcedto,builtmydestinyinthismanner?
Ofcoursenot.

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AndGodswillisforustotrustinHim,loveHimandguardHis
commandments,loveourneighborsasourselvesandtakea
standagainstevilandsatansservantswhorebelledandwantto
bringsueringandperditiontothewholeofmankind.
Aerthesereections,thevoicewhichleadmetorevolthadbeen
defeated;Iwasthinkingthat,ifmytestwasGodswillandI
couldntbackaway,Hewillgivemethepowerandmoral
consciencetogetoutofitinonepiece.
Mansknowledgeismanytimesparadoxical,becausepeople,in
general,arethinkingonethingandarelivingorsayinganother.
Ifsomeonesayssomethingtoday,tomorrowhedoesntsaythe
samething,whathesaidyesterday,todayhedenies.Today,
someonecanbeacriminal,andtomorrowamartyr,todaya
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saint,andtomorrowadevil.Ofallthese,inallhisfallsand
climbs,nothingremainsforthesoulbutanalgoalofhis
existenceontheearth:salvation,resurrection.
ThestatementofRaduGyrthepoetissotelling:Youarenot
defeatedwhenyoubleed,/Norwhenthetearsareinyoureyes./
Theercestdefeats/Aregivingupyourdreams.
Thedreamofourearthlyexistenceisthesalvationofoursoul.
Diditma erwhatmycomradesandtheotherssaidaboutme
becauseIwasatimekeeper?TheimportantthingwasknowingI
didnthurtanyone.ThedecisiontostanduptothetestIhadin
ontofmegavemesatisfaction.Andthisiswhatma eredto
me,notwhattheotherssaid;myhonestintentionwasonlytodo
good.
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IaskedJuberianafavor,toletmeworkthenights,inthethird
shi,whichheaccepted.Ipreeredthisshibecauseofthe
horrorwhichtorturedmeandwhichgrewinintensityduringthe
nights,becauseofthequiet;plus,thesurveillancewasmore
in equentthanduringtheday.
AndIstayedinthisjobuntiltheworkintheGherlaworkshops
wasinterrupted.
Iaskedmyselfthequestionifmorallyspeaking,thepositionof
hypocrite,whenIhadtogetinformation omothersbecauseI
wastorturedtodoso,wasntmoreimmoral,moreinhumane
thantheoneIwasinnow,denigrated,hatedanddespisedasa
timekeeper?

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Wasnttheintentiontonotharmandhelpmywrongedfellow
manmoreconvenient?Appearancesmanytimescanbe
deceiving!Webelieveandspreadrumorsaboutourfellowmen
thattheyarewhatinrealitytheyarent.Sonottheappearances,
notthetalkandnotthedenigrationareofinterest,butthedeed.
Onlythegoodorbadthingswedodeneusasmoralbeings.
And,althoughIoendedGodwhenIwasforcedtosayIdont
prayanymore,He,inHisinnitemercyandgoodness,gaveme
anothertry,whichwasinbothmyadvantageandtheothersas
well.
FrommyrstdaysasatimekeeperIwassuspectednotonlyby
mycomrades,butbytheotherprisonersintheworkshopaswell.
Thenightshiwasinmyadvantageregardingsurveillance,
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becauseIwasalotlesssupervised.Atthesametimethough,I
wastakingabigchance,becauseIdidntcheckonepartwhich
wasbeingworkedwithsomuchsweatbythosewhonotonlythey
werenotpaidfortheexhaustingeort,butdidntgetanyfood
eitherinresponsetotheirspentenergy;moreover,allofthem
hadjustbeenenduringthedenouncements.
Andstill,becausetheorganizationalbureautrustedme,Iwas
lookeduponwithmuchsuspicioninthebeginning.
Astimewentonthough,theonesworkinginthenightshi
realizedmya itudeand, omenemiesanddenigrators,became
my iendsandGodsmercyreectedonme,andontheothers
whichIwassupervising.Andthemostconclusiveproofwasthat,
foranyear,whileIwasatimekeeper,nocalculuserrorwas
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spo edandwewerenevercheckedifthenumberofparts
declaredcorrespondedwiththenumberofpartsmade.Theones
thatarestillalivewillbeabletotestifyaboutthetruthofmy
words.Andnotone,beingastudent,pupilorworker,didraton
mebecauseIdidntcheckonthem.
Itwasasilentagreementbetweenmeandtheonesthatworked
thisshi,andtheirlovewarmedmyheart.Duringthistimeit
wasasifmymadnessintensitywasreducedalso.
Andstill,therewillbevoiceswhowillaccusemethatIaccepted
thatjobwhichwastotallycompromising.Otherswillmaybesay
thatIdidntdotherightthing,because omthelawspointof
view,Iwasobligatedtocheckonwhatwasbeingworked;butI
wassolelyinterestedifmydeedisenjoyabletoGodornot.Itwas
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unfairthatthecommunistregimesubjectedprisonersto
debilitatingworks,normsthatcouldntbeachieved,withoutpay
orproperfoodindirectproportionwiththedepositedphysical
eort.Itwasanabuse,anoutrageousinjustice.Keepingthese
thingsinmind,Ihadthe eedomtonotcheckonthemalso;ifI
wouldhavecheckedonthem,theconsequenceswouldhavebeen
thedeathcarcers,onlyfewge ingoutalive omthose.Andthis
iswheretheRomaniansayingtsin:Dogoodandthrowitin
water,because omthebo omitwillraiseandoatliketheoil
onthesurface.
HowcanInotcometomybrothersaid, omthepositionGod
oeredtome,howcanInothelpthem,whentheyworkedharder
thanslaves?
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GHERLA (2)
THE DENOUNCEMENTS CEASE

AerthethingscolonelZellerstatedinPitesti,thatthe
denouncementswillbecontinued,eitheratGherla,either
elsewhere,outsideprison(wordsrepeatedbyTurcanuatGherla
andexperiencedbyusinsidethetorturechambers),noone
believedthesetortureswilleverbestopped.But,asallthingsin
lifehaveabeginningandanend,closerorfartheraway,and
becausenothinggoesonwithoutGodswill,on1stofJanuary1952,
thedenouncementswerestopped.Thishappenedaerthe
removal omthegovernmentofTeohariGerogescu,Anna

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PaukerandVasileLuca.GheroghiuDej,withStalinsapproval,
tookthereinsofthepartyinhishands,aswellasthestates.
TakenotethatNicolski,thechiefofSecuritysupportedbythe
Russians,stillremainedinhisfunction,untilDejsdeath.Sothe
Moscowocculthadhimasanagent,hismissionespeciallybeing
tocarryoutwiththedenouncements.Ofcourse,thethree
ministerswhocontrolledthekeyministries:InternalAairs,
ForeignandEconomy,werentstrangerstothedenouncements
either,aswellasGheorghiuDej.
Evenwithalltheseevents,Turcanuandhissquadswerent eed
anymore,butonthecontrary,interrogated,sentencedtodeath
andexecuted.

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AnotherreasonthedenouncementsceasedIbelieveisbecause
theybecameknownabroad,evenwithalltheirsecrecy.
Itisnotpreciselyknownwheretheordertoceasethe
denouncementscame om, omDejor omMoscow.Because
theWest,alreadyknowingwhatwashappeninginRomania,
begantoasktheRussiansthisorthat.Andthishurttheir
foreignpolitics.
Forus,theonesinsideGherla,thedeparturesofJuberiananda
fewofTurcanushenchmenwasasign.
ItwasbeingsaidthatnooneinsideGherlawantedtocarryon
withTurcanuswork.
Atthesametime,thenewpoliticalocercamewiththerumor,
whichmostofusdidntbelieve,thatTurcanuandhissquadhad
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been eed.Thosewhodidfallforthisrumorthough,became
informersandrats,signingcommitmentswiththecommunists.
Itwasaclevershinginmurkywaters,andwhofellinthattrap
didnteverrecover.Ontheotherhandtheoneswhodidntfallfor
therumorrecoveredcompletely,ndingthemselvesagainand
recoveringtheirspiritualandphysicalstrengths,thus,saving
themselves omtheswampofdesperation.ManyoftheseImet
inprisonandaerwards,outsideprison.
Thetorturesanddegradationshadbeenoperatingonour
weaknessandhelplessnessandthemostofusmeltedandfell
throughthecracks.Aerwardsthough,whenthephysical
torturesdidntexistanylonger,whocouldndanexcusefor
thosewhomadeapactwiththeSecurity,exceptmaybebecause
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thedenouncementsintheirmindsdidntreallystop,continuing
becauseofinertia?
Iamthinkingthatthedenouncementsdidntstopbecause
peoplewantedthemto,butbecauseGodhadmercyonthose
torturedtoomuch,HeHimselfendingthisinjusticewithno
precedentintheannalsofuniversalhistory.
Anyway,theceasingofthedenouncementswasthealarmcall
whichawakenedourconsciences,helpingusunderstandthat
nothingonthisearthlastsforeverandthedreadofacontinuos
torturehadbeennothingthantheproductofourstateofminds,
ofthedeliriumofcollectivemadnessanddemonicpossession.So,
allthosewhounderstoodthatonlyfaithinGodwillsaveus om
thiscollapse,totallyrecovered,withnohardfeelings,forgiving
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andunderstandingtheirtorturersalso,beingtheycomrades,
iendsorenemies.

CEASING OF THE WORK IN GHERLAS


WORKSHOPS

AerStalinsdeath,inMarch1953,theforcedlaborwithpolitical
prisonersstartedtoloseitsimportance.Untiltheendof1953,the
worksattheCanal,atSalcia,intheleadmines omMaramures,
aswellastheworksinthebigprisonscametoanend.
Everywherediabolicalnormshadbeenimposed,morethanwhat
amancouldtake.Underlegalappearances,thebolshevismwas

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tryingtohideitscrimes.Ateveryaccidentnaturaldeathwas
invoked.
AtoneofGheroghiuDejsmeetingswithStalin(asMarinPreda
confessed),Stalin,beingaskedhowcouldonegetridofthe
bourgeoisrebellion,advisedDejtostartbuildingcanals,
camps,prisons,where,applyingthemethodshehadalready
triedinhiscountry,hewillgetridofallrebellion.Dej,anactive
pupil,conformedexactlytotheadviceofhisdaddyand
unleashedthemostdrasticexterminationoperaofthe
Romanianelite.
Aerthedenouncementsceased,thesurvivorsofthosetortures,
notbeinganylongersuppressedbytortures,li lebyli le
recovered.
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Nothavingthecertaintythatthedenouncementsweregone
forever,wedidnttrusteachothertotalkwhatwasonourminds;
weunderstoodeachotheronlyusingoureyesandmostlysensed
eachother.
Theworkinsidetheworkshopscontinuedthough.And,even
withalltheeortdeposited,manytimessurpassingourstrength,
ofexaggeratednorms,wewerestillpreeringtheworkshop
insteadofthecell,becauseitoeredusabitof eedomandthe
possibilitytomovearoundabit,tomeeteachother,tofeel
ourselvesali lebitlesschained.Herepeoplecouldseeeach
othereveryday,salutingeachotherandaskingeachotherabout
theirwellbeing.Far omcondingineachotherthough.The

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dramawhichtheyhadbeenenduringdestroyedalloftheir
enthusiasms.
Itwasbeingforeseenthat,aertheceasingofactivityin
workshops,anewstageofdetentionwascoming,beingagain
lockedawayincells,enduringanotherformofdenouncements,
cold,hunger,searches,blackcells,basements,zarcaandsevere
arrest,appliedespeciallyduringwintertime,withhalfthefood
forthreedaysanddressedonlyinashirtandunderpants.
Alothaddiedbecauseoftheseseverearrestmeasures.
Thesepunishmentswereadministeredtothepoliticalprisoners
aeracriteriaofanomalousfaults,asforinstance:lookingout
thewindowthroughblinds(woodenboardsnailedonthecell
windows,inordertostoppeopleseeingoutside),lyingonthe
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bedsorbunksduringdaytime,writingonthewallsusingpieces
ofwire,writingoncolouredglassbo lesgivenbythegenpop
inmatesortaken ommedicalocesandemptiedoftheir
contents,writingonthesolesofyourboots(usingthesoapstolen
omthebathroomanddetergentdust).TheMorseCode
communicationthroughtheradiatorpipeswasthegravest,
becauseitcompromisedtheprisonsecret.
Starting1953untilmyreleasein1964,thiscellregimeisolatedus
completely omtherestoftheworld.Wedidntconnectwithour
familiesanymore,didntreceivefoodorclothesanddidntread
oneprintedline.Allofthesegroundus,madeussickandkilled
usbythethousands.

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SHARING THE CELL WITH COSTICA


CRISTESCU

FromSeptember1953Iwasnttakenouttoworkanymore,the
workreducingtoonlytwoshis,untilDecemberwhenitwas
completelystopped.
UntilthestartofDecemberIwasmovedacoupleoftimes om
oneroomtoanother.
AttheendofthemonthIsharedtheroomwiththedoctorVasile
Marculescu,oneofthemostbrilliantmedics,whounderstoodhis
callevenwithallthesentenceshehadreceived.Respecting
Hipocratsoath,hehadalwaysintervenedtohelpthose
threatenedwithdeath.Heisamongthefewmedicprisoners
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whomImetinprisonandwhotreatedhispatientswithmore
carethanabrotherscare.Eventhoughhedidntgetany
medicine,hewasencouragingthesickwithadvices,thushealing
theirpains,asmuchashecould.Formeitshallremaina
mysteryhow,forinstance,onlybyfeelingPopescuPauls
abdomen,healedhisinstestinalocclusion.(Ourcomrade om
ClujPetricaSabadussuered omthesamedisease,and
becausethemedicsinDejdidntwanttooperatehim,theykilled
him,leavingtwokidsasorphans).
DoctorMarculescunevertookthepoliticalviewoftheperson
intoconsideration,hisintellectualbackgroundorsocialstatus;
forhim,allprisonerswerehisbrothers.Hewasntalegionnaire,
andstillhehadbeenthroughthedenouncementsinGherla,
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growingfondoftheyoungpeople,whomheunderstoodand
helped.
Beinginthesameroomwithhimandknowinghismedicand
manbehaviorwell,ImyselfbeingastudentinMedicine,I
sometimesaddressedhimwithmyproblems.Notworkinginthe
shopanymore,mymadnesswasstartingtobecomeviolent
enough,somuchso,thatIwasexpectinganymomenttolosemy
mind.Iaskedforhishelp.Butbecausehewasntspecializedin
thisma er,hecouldnthelpme.Heaskedafavorlikebetween
colleaguessoIcanbeadmi edtothesickprisonerhospital.So
doctorMarculescuremainsinmymemoryasthemanwhodida
lotofgoodtome.Ihadthepleasureofmeetinghimoutside

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prison,justbeforeIwasleavingthecountry,intheRoman
Square,Bucharest.
Whenadmi ed,insteadofndingmypeace,mydisease,which
wasntphysicalinnature,aggravatedinsteadduringeach
passingday.
IwasthentakenandisolatedattheZarca,inacellwithpeople
whohadbeeninthedenouncements,theengineerCostica
Cristescuandanotherpupil.
Aerafewdaysoflivingtogether,whenthepupiltemporarilyle
thecell,Cristescutoldmethatwehadbeenisolatedbecausewe
bothhadbeendenouncedandthatthepupilhadamission.
ThewayIandengineerCristescubehavedtowardshimlehim
totallydefenseless.Indeed,aerafewdaysourpupilburstopen
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andconfessedthathehadbeenintroducedinsideourroomjust
toextractinformation omus,tohearandmemorizeeverything
wediscuss.Weweresodeeplyimpressedbythesincerityofthe
youngmanthatwestartedcrying.Duringthetimeweshared
thesamecellwithhim,afewmonths,weweresuccessfulin
persuadinghimtohavethestrengthandcouragetonotrat
anymoreinthefuture.
DuringthetimeIsharedthatcellwithCristescuwegrewvery
fondofeachother,withoutdiscussingthedenouncementsin
detailsthough.Idontknowwhy,hedidntunderstandthe
essenceofthisdramaatall.Moreintuitivethanrational,hewas
observingwithpredilectiononthepupilsandstudentsfaceswho

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hadbeendenouncedandwereworkinginsidetheworkshops,a
similaritywithdevils.
Asapoliticalaliation,Cristescuwasapeasantpartymember,
hehadbeenthesuperioroftheyoungpeopleinthatpartyin
Bucharest.Hehaddonethewartooandlosthisrightarmonthe
ont.
Eventhoughwehaddierentpoliticalviews,CosticaCristescu
stillremainsinmymemoryasthemanwithnopolitical
prejudiceandhardfeelings,servingthenationwithoutpersonal
orpartyinterests.

MEETING GHEORGHE (GICU) JIMBOIU

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WhileIwassi inginthecellwithCosticaCristescu,inavery
severeregime,Iaskedtheguardtobetakentothemedicalvisit,
tothemedicinthesectionwhereIhadle om.Thatwasmy
facultycolleagueVirgilLungeanu, omIasi,whohadconvinced
thedoctorMarculescu,theocialdoctor,tolethimconsultthe
sickandhisdiagnostictobenal.
Itwastheyear1954,inFebruary,inthatunforgo enwinter,when
outoftheordinaryheavysnowfallswerefeltinTransylvaniaas
well.
Aneventoccurredthenwhichchangedthelivesofthepolitical
prisoners.ThemoremildpoliticsHrusciovinstitutedhavebeen
felthereaswell,meaningamoreimprovedmedicalcare.During
thatconfusionaerStalinsterror,evensomeoftheguardswere
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abitmorehumane,whichwasgoodformeaswell,becausethey
acceptedtotakemetothemedicaloce.Fortunatelyforme,the
guarddidntassistandIcouldtalkwithLungeanuasbetween
colleagues.
AsIstatedearlier,mydiseasewasntphysicalinnature.
Lungeanuknewsomethingaboutthisdisease,buthetoldme
thatbecausehecouldntcomprehendit,hecoulddonothingfor
me.EventhephychiatristswhomIgottoknowandaskforhelp
whenIwasstillworkinginsidetheworkshopansweredmethe
same.
ThefavorwhichLungeanudidtomethough,wasto
diagnosticatemeashavingtroublewithmylungs,andindoing

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thathehelpedmegetaway omtheZarca60andtransfermeto
thesectionwhereheworkedasamedic.Myluckwasthatthis
diagnosticwasconrmedbytheocialdoctoraswell,without
evenconsultingme.
AerseveraldaysIwastakenoutoftheZarca, omthecell
whereIhadbeensi ingwithCristescu,andtakentoroomno.1
inthebuildingnamedTheSection,whichwasonthetopofthe
ChapelwhereImetFlueras.ThefactthatIalsometJimboiu
theremeantalottome.
JimboiudidntendurethedenouncementsinPitesti,because,
beingseverelytorturedduringhisinterrogationinBrasov,asa
studentattheMercantileAcademyinthiscity,aerthe

60

Cellswithveryhos lecondi ons

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interrogation,hewasdiagnosticatedwithseveretuberculosisand
liverproblems.Beinginthisstatehewasthentakentothe
SanatoriumPenitentiaryfortheonessickoftuberculosisin
TarguOcna,ontheTrotusvalley.
Beingorphanedofhisfathersinceali leboy,hehadbeenraised
byhismotherwhodidntmarryasecondtime,livinginthemost
pureorthodoxfaith.Tothisbackground,thelegionnaire
educationwasaddedalso,intheBrotherhoodsoftheCross,he
beingdirectlyinuencedbytheonewhoremainedamythforall
ofuswhomethim,thelegionnairestudentValeriuGafencu,
sentenced omAntonescustime.
GafencuIdidntknowpersonally.Ididreadhiswri enthoughts
smuggledoutoftheprisonbyamiracle.IonlysawhimatPitesti
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acoupleoftimes,beforethedenouncementsstarted.AllIknow
aboutGafencuIlearned omtheothercomrades,Jimboiu
included,andthisiswhyIleavetherighttotalkabouthimtomy
comradeswhoknewhimandwereinuencedbyhim.
JimboiuwasperhapsthemostillustriousstudentofGafencu,
harmoniouslyintertwiningthelegionnaireview,theorthodox
faithandthirstofintellectualknowledge.Heisamongthefew
legionnaireswhomIgottoknow,wholivedthinkinghewould
ratherdie,thantodenounceanotherintheinterrogations.The
resultofhisconvictionwasthetuberculosisandliverproblems
and,later,death.
Hewassentencedtohardyearsinprison,notbyhisown
statements,butbyothersstatements,ge ingoutofthe
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interrogationwiththeclearconsciencethathedidntbringother
youngpeopleinprisonalongwithhim.
Imetallkindsofpeopleduringmylife,before,andaer
detention,butInevermetoneasJimboiu,whocouldunderstand
OrthodoxyandloveChristlikehedid,noma ertheirageor
education.Ayoungmanwithapurebodyandsoul,blessedwith
agreatkindnessandgoodness.HewastheonlybeingwhomI
metandwhoneversaidheissueringbecauseofhunger.He
lovedpeopleforwhotheywere,indierentofwhotheywere,
iendsorenemies,evenifhislovemeantsacricinghimself.He
hadanunderstandingthatcannotberationallyexplainedfor
hisenemiesandfortheoneswhotorturedandwerestill
torturinghim.Hewassoconvincedofhisearthmissiontodo
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good,thatheseemedtocome omanotherworld.IfIwouldnt
havemetthisyoungman,IwoulddoubtmanythingsorI
wouldnthavebelievedthem.Jimboiu,asonlythesaints
understood,identiedhimselfwiththeSonofManscall:<<
CometoMe,allyouwhoarewearyandburdened,andIwillgive
yourest.TakeMyyokeuponyouandlearn omMe,forIam
gentleandhumbleinheart,andyouwillndrestforyoursouls.
ForMyyokeiseasyandMyburdenislight>>
FromthemomentIknewJimboiu,Ididntreadthelivesofthe
saintslikeanyotherlecture.Knowinghim,anydoubt,andany
suspicionthatsaintsdidntexistorstillexistonearth,was
sha eredforever ommysoul.Thismartyr,havingabizantyne

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saintsbody,wastheunequaledmodelofwhatmanmustbeand
doforhissalvationandthesalvationofthenationhecame om.
Althoughfaithissomethingotherthanreason,stillmostpeople
haveneedofprooftobelieve(SaintThomastheApostle
category).Icannotndanywordsinorderformetoexpressmy
honorandadmirationforthislegionnairemartyr.AnytermI
wouldusetomakeothersunderstandwhothisyoungmanwas
andwhathemeantforthosewhoknewhimwouldbefutile.
EverythingIstatedabovecanberesumedinthefollowing
sentence:hewasanangelinthebodyofaman.
Ihavethestrongbeliefthattheexistenceofpeopleonearthand
theirrelationshipsisnotarandomact.

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FromthemomentItalkedwithJimboiuIhadtheimpressionI
amconversatingwithangels.
Hewasperfectinallways,accordingtotheimperative:<<Be
perfecttherefore,asyourHeavenlyFatherisperfect>>

SECTION ROOM 1

TheSection,whereroomno.1couldbefound,waspartofthe
middlebuildinginsidetheprison.
AtthestartofFebruary1954,whenIwastakenout omthe
Zarcaintothissectionwithbigroomswithoverlappedbunks,
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whereonlytheonesinterminalphasesoftheirdiseasewereput,
manywhohadbeenenduringthedenouncementsaswellas
thoseputtoalotofexhaustingworkintheprisonworkshops.
Normally,Ishouldnthavebeenthere,notsuering oma
physicalmalady.InthetimeIhadbeenworkingasatimekeeper
Ihadbeenrecoveringali le,notbeingforcedtodeposita
fanaticalphysicaleortovermystrengthcapabilitiesinorderto
getthenormdone;Iwasstillweakened,becausemydiseasewas
soadvancedthatnotevenfoodinterestedmeanymore.
Inroomno.1Ilivedthemostterrible, ighteningand
inconceivablespiritualtorture.AndthereIalsothoughtand
understoodwhatthefaithinGodtrulyis.

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AsIwalkedintothatroom,smallerthantheothers,withonly
onerowofoverlappedbunks,Iwonderedhowwillwebeableto
tin?Wewerearoundfourty.
OnthetopbunkstherestoodmanywhomIknewsincethetime
ofthedenouncements.SoIwasinvitedtotakeaseatamong
them.Theloveofmycomradesandtheoneswhoweremy
coworkersintheworkshopsimpressedme.Itwasthesame
climatewehadbeenlivinginsidePitesti,beforethe
denouncements.
HowcouldthisclimatebecomparedwiththehellinsidePitesti
andGherladuringthedenouncements?
Howcanitbeexplainedthattheseyoungmenspureandfullof
loveheartsturnedto180degreesbackwardsandtheystartedto
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tearateachother?Howcanitbepossibletobeanangeltoday
andtomorrowademon?Andstillitwaspossible;allofuswho
hadbeeninthedenouncements,althoughhonest,pureinheart
andfearlessghters,becamethecontraryofwhatweusedtobe,
asaresultofterribletortures.But,ifthefalloftheangelsoftheir
own eewillsisirreversible,thefallofman,asaresultof
coercionandtorture,isreversibleinmostofthecases,ifnotall.
Theniceclimateinroomno.1wasntprovedbywords,butby
gesturesandsilence,becausewewerenttellingeachotherwhere
wevebeen,whatwevesueredandwhatwevedone.Whatwe
werebeforethedenouncementsdidntma er,butwhatwehad
become.Wehadbeenlivinganexperiencewhichnoyoung
generationhadexperiencedbefore.
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Somanydeadandkilledwithoutmercy,somanygoneinsane
andsomanywhotriedtocommitsuicide,arenttheytelling
anythingtous?
Thethousandsofcomradeskilledinacowardlyfashioninthe
timeofthatdementedkingCarolthesecondandduringthe
satanicreignofcommunismarewrestlinginsideme;especially
thosekilledduringthedenouncementsinGherla.Allthesecry
imploringforGodsjusticetobedone.Iamonlytheirspeaking
advocate,beingtheonewhosawandsueredthatunstoppable
hatredofsatan,appliedthroughhisservantsagainstus.
Howisitpossiblethatamancanbeamantodayandtomorrow
theopposite?Andstill,itwaspossible.Andyousaw omwhatI
statedearlierwhatthecostwasforthem.
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Istatedearlierthat,beingisolatedinbasementcellno.15,inthe
Suceavaprison,waitingforthetrial,forthersttimeIwas
ndingmyselflebyeveryoneandwithoutanywaytogetout,
notsleepingbecauseofcoldandhunger,andduringasleepless
nightIcriedtotheHeaven:Lord,JesusChrist,SonofGod,I
wanttodieforYou!
Mycrywassincere,itstarteddeepdowninsidemyconscience:I
wantedtodiewithallmyheart.Butmyintentionhaditsrootsin
apridewhichIwasgoingtopayfordearly.Respondingtomy
prayer,GodoeredmetheopportunitytodieforHim,andnot
onlyonce.Mymistakewasaskingforsomethingthatdidntbet
me.Plus,Ididnthavethewisdomtoadd:Ifitcanbedoneand
withyourhelp,Lord.Because,astheholyfatherssay,thetrial,
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thetemptationandsueringarenotabovewhatamancantake,
andtoovercomethemyouhavetorememberthat:<<Apart om
Meyoucandonothing>>.So,onlywithHim,throughHim,with
Hisindulgence,helpandwill,wecanovercomeanytemptation,
ofanykind.
InPitesti,duringthatmostbrutalordeal,IdidntdenyGod,I
onlystatedpubliclythatIdontprayanylonger.Buttherewere
stillconsequencesforthisandthisiswhythedreadofdeathtook
overmewhenIrstenteredGherla.IrefusedGodsgraceofmy
own eewillandthenprobablyGodlemealso,remainingonly
I,aloneandnakedduringthisgreatordeal.
Theholyfatherssaythattheprayeristhestateofcommunion
betweenTheMakerandthecreature.Iwaslewithout,and
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insidemysouldeprivedofGodspresenceandpower,thespirit
ofsatanentered,possessionsoviolentIcannotdescribe.
And,ifIdidntbecomeabullyandamurderer,itsbecausethe
possessionwhichtookoverallofuswasmanifestinginsideme
onlyintheformofhorror.
Itisnotmyintentiontoforceotherstounderstandorbelieve
whatIfeltbackthen.Thesueringandpainofthoseyoungmen
whoenduredthePitestiandGherlainfernoweremorethan
horribleandintolerable;somysuering,painandthedread
insidemysoulcannotbeunderstood,orexplainedandimagined
bycomparison.
Thedreadandfearweremanifestinginsideofmewithsuchforce
that,inthemomentswhenIwaslucid,Iusedtosaytomyself
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thatifwereallylivedinhellandifthatishowhellislike,who
thencouldendureitforever?IonlyenduredforfouryearsandI
wonder,whenIamwritingnow,howcomeIdidntlosemymind?
AndifIdidntlast,wishingformydeath,Iwonderwhatwaslike
forthosewhodidntbelieveinGod.
TheGospelconfessesthatwhenGodchasedthedemonsoutof
thepossessedman,theyaskedHimtoletthementerthepigs
herd,becauseevendemonsareterriedofthetorturesinHell.
Wecouldntsleeponthebunkatnight,beingcrammedtogether
likesardines,sowerecoveredduringthedaytime,exercisingin
turns.

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Aerafewdays,asIwasmovingaroundintheroom,ayoung
manwasdrawntomya ention,morespecialthantheothers.He
hadthefaceofaneasternasceticwhichradiatedgoodness.
WhenwemetthersttimeIdidntmemorizehisname.Asking
abouthim,thecomradestoldmehehadbeenastudentatthe
BrasovAcademy,hedidntendurethedenouncementsandjust
came omtheTarguOcnaSanatorium,beingsickof
tuberculosisandhavingtroublewithhisliveraswell.
Inoticedthatthismanwaslookingatmetoo.Atonepoint,he
surprisedmewhileIwaslookingathim:Ihadtoleanagainst
thewallsoIdidntfalldown.Somethinginexplicabletookover
meanditseemsthataforce,otherthanmyownwill,wasin
directoppositionwithhisstare.Istartledandrealizedthata
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spirit,contrarytotheonethatwaspossessingme,wasghting
insidemysoul.
Exhausted,Ilieddownonthebunk.Myfacewaslikeadead
mans,thebloodwithdrawn ommycheeks.Noticingmy
paleness,mycomradesaskedmewhatiswrong.ItoldthemI
wasntfeelingwell.ThenightthatfollowedIshallneverforget.
Thespiritofsatanwhichwaspossessingme,torturedand
ightenedme,probablybecauseitcouldntsuertheway
Jimboiutheyoungmanwasstaringatme.
Thenextdayinthemorning,hecameclosetomeandinvitedme
onhisbunk,sowecouldtalk.Thespiritwhowaspossessingme
triedtostopme omdoingthisstep,butJimboiusgesturehe
tookmebymyhandforcedmetofollowhim.
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Therstwordwhichheaddressedmewas:Mybrother,youare
sick;dontbea aidthoughandtrustme.Openupyoursoul
andtellmewhatisonyourheart;maybeIwillbeabletohelpyou
withsomething.
InafewwordsIrelatedtohimwhatwasonmyconscience.Aer
myconfessionheanswered:YousinnedbadlybeforeGod.Why
didntyoutrytoprayagaininPitestitoo?IansweredhimthatI
didntknowwhostoppedme,butsomethingdid.
HeaskedmeifIamstillpraying.Iampraying,butIdontfeel
anything;myheartislikeastone,myanswerwas.Eversince
youpray,didyouaskGodforforgiveness?Tomynegativereply,
hecontinued:Didyoucry?.Again,no.
Iwouldliketoknowhowyoupray.
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AerItoldhimhowIpray,heansweredtomethatIampraying
well.
IfeelasifGodlemethough.
DontoendGod,itwasnotHeWholeyou;youoendedHim,
heapostrophizedme.
Aerthisexchangeofwords,IbelievedItalkedwithanangel,
becausethepowerwhichemanated omhimsilencedthespirits
whichtormentedme.
Fromthenon,heinvitedmetotalkwithhimeveryday.Realizing
themanhewasandhisimmensespiritualpower,Iimploredhim
toprayformetoo.Iwillpray,heanswered,butitrequiresa
personaleorttoo.TheoensebroughttoGodcannotbeerased
otherwisebutbythetearsofrepentanceonly.Onlythenwhen
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youwillprayintearsandrepent,Godwillhearyourvoiceand
forgiveyou.
Thedaysuntilthe1954Easterweresoterribleforme,thatIdont
haveanywordstoexpresswhatIwasexperiencing,letalone
helpingsomeoneunderstandit.
AsthetalkbetweenmeandJimboiuprogressedmytorment
becameeversounbearable.EverydayIwaswaitingtowakeup
insane ommyli lebitofsleep.Paradoxally,mythinkingand
discernmentwerefunctioningatalltimeshighandIwas
realizingthestateIwasinandthishurtmealot.
Thenmymothersfacepassedbeforemyeyes,crying,andIwas
terriedthinkingshewillgettoseememad.

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Itisofnouse,noma erhowItrytoconvinceanyone,tomake
himunderstandwhatIfeltandexperiencedbackthenunderthe
pressureofthis e ing.Intheprisonandoutsideprison,all
thosewhomIconfessedwhatwentonwithmebackthen,in
ordernottooendme,theydidnttellmetheydontbelieve,but
thattheydontunderstand.
TheonlyoneswhodidunderstandmewhenItoldthemthe
thingsIvebeenthrough,besidesJimboiu,werethehermits
insidethemonasterySihastria.
TheEasterwascomingnear,attheendofApril,inabeautiful
Spring,aerahard,unforgo enwinter,whentheinsidetorment
surpassedalllimits.BeinginthatspiritualstateIhadthe
followingthought:ifallthisworldwasmine,whatusewouldit
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betome,ifIdidnthavethepeaceandquietIoncehadbeforeI
stoppedpraying?Itislikethewordsays:<<Whatgoodwillitbe
forsomeonetogainthewholeworld,yetforfeittheirsoul?Or
whatcananyonegiveinexchangefortheirsoul?>>
BecauseGoddoesntallowtemptationsgreaterthanwecould
withstand,inthemostcriticalmoments,Hismercyandhelp
cometous.Butonlyifweaskforthemwithallourhearts.

THE RESSURECTION

GodwouldpunishmeifIdidntconfesswhatIexperiencedback
then.BecauseItisHeWhoperformedthemiracle,andImust

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testifytothat.Thatswhy,thischapteraddressesonlytothose
whobelieveinGodlimitless,inHisGospelandChurch.
Christianityisthereligionofmiracles.TheembodiementofThe
SonofGod omtheVirginMary,whichisbeyondwhatweknow
aslawsofnature,istherstofthemiracles.Godbecomesman,
likeus,forustosee,feel,hearHimtalk,seeHismiracles
performedamongusmen;andwegettothepointwherewedeny
HimasTheSonofMan,persecuteHimandcrucifyHim.
Themiracleofmiracles,whichhumanreasoncannot
comprehendandadmit,istheRessurectionOfTheSonofMan.
WhileHewasstillwithusontheearthHetoldus:<<Iamthe
RessurectionandTheLife,IamtheLifeoftheworld,IamThe
Way,TheTruthandTheLife>>.
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TheonesthatdontbelieveinTheSonOfMansRessurectionand
HismiraclesandHissaintsmiraclestheyperformedusingHis
Powerwonthaveapartintheresurrectionandeternal
happiness,buttheywillonlyberesurrectedinorderforthemto
gettheirrewardsfortheirunfaithfulnessandevildeedswhich
theydoneasservantsofsatan.Foriftheyservedsatanonearth,
itishimtheyshallhaveforever.
Christianityisonlyreceivedbyfaith,notbypowerofhuman
thought.Faithisagiven,agiFromGodgiventoman omhis
creation.Andthisgioperatesespeciallytherewherehuman
reasoningcannotprotrude.<<Believeandyoushallbesaved>>
<<YoustudytheScripturesdiligentlybecauseyouthinkthatin

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themyouhaveeternallife.ThesearetheveryScriptureswhich
testifyaboutMe>>TheSonOfGodsays.
ItremblewithallmybeingwhenIrememberlivingfouryearsin
thatsliceofhell.Butwhatwilltheunbelievershavetosayatthe
Ressurection,whenGodwillperformHisgreatestmiracle,
resurrectingmanandtheworldforeternity?Andallthisfor
mantobealiveandeternallyhappy.
ItwasnotrandomthatImetJimboiuinroomno.1inthe
Section.IhadtoknowhimbecauseIneededtounderstandthat
manssalvationisonlypossiblewithGodsgrace.Anditwasnot
randomthatwewerejustabovetheChapelwhereImetFlueras,
theatheistturnedtotherightfaithattheendofhislifeonearth.

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TheEasterwascomingnearandmyphysicalandspiritual
strengthshadbeenexhausted.Withoutrealizing,ananxietyor
maybeahunchthatsomethingneededtohappentomemadeits
wayinallmybeing.Iwasexperiencingtheemotionoftheman
readytobeputtodeath.Iwasnta aidofdying,whichIwished
somanytimestohappen,butIwasa aidthatanymomentI
couldlosemymindforever.
ItwastheSaturdayoftheEaster.AdaybeforethatIhadbeen
prayingsodeeply,asIneverdidinmylife;atthesametime
thoughIwasdesperatebelievingmyprayerwasntlistenedto.
SoSaturdayintheevening,atabout10oclock,whenitwastime
forlightsout,Ilieddownonthebunk.Icouldntndmysleep
forafewnightsnow.Towardsthemiddleofthenight,something
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urgedmetogetdown omthebunkandmovearoundthe
room.IgotclosetothewindowandinthatmomentIheardthe
Gherlachurchbellsringingbecauseitwastwelveoclock,
announcingtheRessurectionservice.Thebellssoundswereso
harmoniusthatitseemedtomethattheycame omanother
world.
Ifelldownonmykneesin ontofthewindowand,havingmy
handsclenchedforprayer,Iyelled omthebo omofmysoul:
GodJesusChrist,SonofGod,IconfessthatIoendedYou,but
YouLord,knowthatIamonthebrinkofsueringandpatience.
Icannotdoitanymore!DowithmeasYouwill!Iranaway om
You,Lord,butIpraytoYouwithallmybeing,ifitispossible,

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forgivemeandRessurectmysoulbecauseIbelieveinYour
Ressurectionlimitless.
Thatmoment,asIwassi ingonmykneeshavingmyhands
clenchedandmyeyeslookingthroughtheironbars,allmybeing
trembledandstreamsoftearsstartedtoow ommyeyes.
WhileIwascrying,Ionlycouldsay:Lord,havemercyonme!I
didntgettonishthesewords,andmywholebodywascaught
intremblingandconvulsionjustlikethosewhoarepossessed
andIfelthowastrangeunseenforcelemybody.Itwasthe
spiritofsatanwhichhadbeentormentingmeandtakingcontrol
overme,forfouryearstime.
Ithinkofmyhealing,becauseitwasahealing,astheatonement
ofamanwhocarriesagreatburdenonhisback,untilhefalls
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underitsweightandcannotgetupagainanymore;then
someonecomesandtakestheloadandhefeels,allofsudden,so
lightthathecany.ThisishowIfeltimmediatelyaerthat
satanicforceleme.
Ifellonmyhead,onthecementoor,unconscious,myshirt
beingallwetbecauseofperspirationandmytearswouldntstop
streamingoutofmyeyes.Ifeltmyforeheadwetbythetears
fallenonthecoldcementwhichIwaskissing.Theywerethetears
ofrepentancewhichGodreceivedinHisgoodwill,forgivingmy
oensebroughtoHim.Inthefouryearsoftorment,Ididntshed
onetear,butnowmysoulwasbeingwashedinthepoolof
repentanceandGodsmiracles.

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Lateron,Igotup,notknowingwhereIwas;IfeltIwasanother
beingandIwassolight,asifIwasoatinginotherspheres.
RightontheRessurectionday,Godhealedmeandresurrected
metoo.
Ikneeledagainand,lyingwiththefaceontheground,Iyelled
againwithallmybreath:God,youaresogoodandmerciful
withsinners,thatIdontknowhowtothankYou!Thenthe
wordsOfJesuswhenHehealedtheinvalidmancrossedmymind
:See,youarewellagain.Stopsinningorsomethingworsemay
happentoyou.Myheartfeltajoythatcannotbeunderstood
exceptfortheoneswhoexperiencedit.IfuntilthenIwasinhell,
thatmomentIfeltthatHeavensjoywasntfar ommysoul.

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Igotup omthecement;beforemeJimboiuwasstandinglikean
apparition.Ihuggedhim,sayingwithallmyheart:ChristIs
Ressurected!.HetrulyIsRessurected!,heansweredfullof
tenderness.Wecriedforawhile,both.Ididntfeelcloserto
someoneinmyentirelifeasIfelttoJimboiuthatmoment.We
werebothlivingthejoyofmyresurrection.Iwantedtothank
himforhisadvicebutheonlywascontenttosay:Yourtears
werepleasingtoGodandHismercyhashealedyou.Isaw
everything omthemomentyougotdown omthebunk;I
wasntasleepeither.Iamgladforyouwithallmyheart.
Itwasdaytimeandtheonesinsidetheroomawakened.Thelight
ofTheRessurectionbathedmeinItsrays.Iwasadierentman,
because:Iwaslostandhadbeenfound,deadanhadbeen
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broughtbacktolife.Ireturnedonthebunk,lieddownandslept
profoundly,somuchsothatmycomradesbarelywokemeupat
theeveningmeal.Ihadntbeensleepinglikethisforfouryears.
TheEasterof1954wastherealbirthandresurrectionforme;a
crucialeventconcerningmyfaithandthinking.
Inmysoulapowerhadbeeninstalled,whichmademeonlyfear
Godandnothingelse,insteadofthefearanddreadI
experiencedforfouryears.
Formeprisonwasntafe eranymore,butfull eedom.Even
thoughmybodyremainedinchains,mysoulwas eed om
everythingthatcouldtiemetothisearthlylife.Itwasthe
eedomTheSonOfMangaveussaying:<<Igiveyoutrue
eedom>>.Theprisonwalls,padlocksandchainswhichpressed
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usandtiedusupwerentsoimportanttome;Ilivedinother
equenciesoflife.Notonlymysoul,thinking,understanding
andexperienceweredierent,butevenmyhelplessbody,
distrophied,wasstronger.
Thosethatwillreadthischapteringoodwillandpatience,will
knowIbelievewhydoIthinkandlivelikeIdo.
Istayedinthatroomonemoremonthaerthat,duringwhichI
hadthemost uitfulconversationswithmyloved iendand
comradeGherogheJimboiu.Aerwards,hewastakentothe
interrogationinAiud,where,Ionlylaterfoundoutthathis
sicknessgotworseandbeingsubmi edtoastrictregimeand
withnomedicine,hehaddiedlikeamartyr.Ihavethisprivate
beliefthatGodtookhimintheHeavenstobewiththesaints.
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AerJimboiule,itwasasifsomethingtoreinsidemeandI
askedVirgilLungeanu,mycolleague,togetmeoutofthisroom
andsendmetothecellular.AerIinsisted,Iwastransferredto
roomno.1groundoor,inthebigbuildingoftheprison.

ROOM NO. 1 CELLULAR

InthisroomImetalotofcomradeswhohadbeeninthe
denouncements,aswellasmygood iendandcomradeLefa
Aristide,whichhadntbeenthere.Hehadthechancetobe
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repartitionedasamedicatthePitestimedicaloce,and om
there,intheAutumnof1949,miraculously,tobetakenalong
withtheonessickoftuberculosis,foracoldabcess,tothe
SanatoriumPenitentiaryinTarguOcna.
Lefa,astudentinthehyearofMedicine,didwondersat
TarguOcnawiththeonessickofT.B.Theocialmedics,fearing
thediseasecouldspread,gavehimagreenlighttotakecareof
thesick.ItistherehemetValeriuGafencu,underwhose
inuencehelived.
Acertainpastor,Wurmbrand,whohadbeeninthe
denouncements,gotsickoftuberculosistoobecauseofthe
tortures,andwassenttoTarguOcna,whereLefatookcareof
him,savinghislife.WhenWurmbrandletheTarguOcna
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prisonhetoldLefa:Becauseofyouandthewayyoutookcareof
meIamalive;Iwillneverforgetyou.Thisishowtheseyoung
legionnairesknewtohelptheirfellowmen,noma erwhothey
were.
Duringmystayinthatroom,becauseofaninformer,Iwas
punishedalongwithLefaandStupuwithseverearrestinthe
basement,whichwasundertheSomesriverbedandbecauseof
thistheoorwasalwayswet.
Thebasementregimewasverysevere,ge ingonlyhalfofour
foodrationonlyonceintwodays.Inthenightswesleptonsome
woodenboardswhichwereputonsupportswhichwerethen
takenonthecorridorduringtheday.Onthecementoorofthe
cellweputwoodenboardssothewatercouldntgetinsideour
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boots.EversinceIexperiencedthemiracleofmyresurrectionI
wasmoreimmunetosuering.
Oneday,Iwastakenbyaguardtotheadministrationbuilding.
Passingthroughanoceroom,wherewomenwereworking,
whosefacesIdidntseeforsixyears,Itoldthem:Goodday!.
ButIdidntgettonishmysentenceandIfeltapowerfulpunch
inthebackofmyhead.Thehitpushedmetotheoor;the
women,seeingthescene,remainedpetried.Therepresentative
oftheworkingclass,theproletariat,havinganothertypeof
education,feltlikeheneededtorebukemein ontofthem:
You,bandit,arentallowedtosaytotheladies:goodday.
FromthatroomIwasescortedthenbytheguardonacorridor,
inaninterrogationoce.In ontofmeayoungSecurityocer
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appeared,whopolitelyinvitedmetotakeaseatonthechair.
AerIwasseated,theocer,measuringmeheadtotoe,asksme
:Wherewereyoutaken omsir,becauseyoulooklikecrap?
Fromthebasement,Ianswer.Butwhatsthatonyour
forehead?Ididntwanttodescribethewomenscenebut,
becauseheinsistedsomuch,Itoldhimeverything,emphasizing
thatthisistheproletarymoralandcivilization.In ontofme,
theocerwroteareportsotheguardwhohitmecouldbe
punished.Buthedidntknowthattheprisonwardenwasthe
famousGoiciu!
Upsetbytheconditionsthatthepoliticalprisonershave,he
switchedontoanothersubject.Hewascoming omGalatito
investigatesomecasesofmedics omTecuciwhohadbeensame
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yearcolleagueswithmeattheMedicalUniversityinIasi.My
colleagueLunguleacdeclaredinPitestithatthesehad
connectionswiththelegionnairesduringtheirfacultystudies.It
wasthesecondtimearoundwhenIsawthattheSecuritywas
usingourstatementsgiveninPitestiinordertoarrest,trialand
sentenceallthosewhohadarelationshipwithus.HowcouldI
admitastatementwhichcouldsendinnocentbeingsbehind
bars?!
Inthattime,thephysicalpainhadlessimportanceforme,and
thatswhyIcategoricallystatedtotheocerthatIdontadmitto
anythingandIwillgivenostatementtoanyone,askinghimto
sendmebackwhereIwascoming om.Myfermdecision

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compelledtheocertocalltheguardsohecanescortmeback
tothebasement.
AfactworthnotingisthekeepingofsecrecyinsideRomanias
prisons.InAntonescustimeitwasdierent,thecommunication
betweenthepoliticalprisonerswasdonewithasimplesystemof
knockswiththestsagainstthewall.
AtGherla,manyofourcomradestudentsinPolytechnicsknew
theMorseCodeandtheycommunicatedperfectlythroughthe
radiatorpipesandcellwalls.Thisingeniusdiscoveryisdueto
TomutaOctavian omroomno.1groundoor,todayan
engineer,oneofthebeststudentstheBucharestPolytechnicshad
backthen.

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But,aswehadnoapparatusforthesendingofthemessages,
therehadtobeanotherwayfortherepresentationofthedots
andlinesofthecode.Tomutasuggestedthatthedotshouldbea
shorthitandthelineshouldberepresentedbytworapidhits,
almostoverlapped,methodwhichwasquicklytransmi edtoall
thecells.Thecommunicationwasrstdone omwindowto
window,untiltheMorseCodecouldbelearned.
So,intheSummerof1954,inthetrainwagons,thevansor
securitycells,thesecretwascompletelysha ered.Allkindsof
informationwasbeingsent, omthemostcommon,topolitics,
scientic,literary,philosophical,theological.
InAiud,sharingthecellwithEugenMagirescu,Inoticedhewas
veryfamiliarizedwiththiswayofcommunicating:walking
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aroundtheroom,herecordedeverythingthatwastransmi ed
throughthepipe.IonMunteanuonlyneededtoheartwoorthree
le ersinawordtounderstandtherest.Theybecameso
specializedthattheydidntneedtosendwholewords,sothe
transmissiontimewasgreatlyreduced.
ManyoftheRomanianorforeignauthorspoemswere
transmi edusingthisprocedureandthenmemorized.Sowere
thepoemsofRaduGyr,NichiforCrainicandotheryoungpoets.
Allthesearcheswereannounced, omthegroundoorupuntil
thesuperioroors,usingtheMorseCode.
Thisprocedurecosttheprisonersdearly.Oncecaught,hundreds
ofthemwerepunishedwithseverearrest,manyofthemdying
becauseofit.Butevenwithallthepunishmentsandthe
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hundredsofvictimswhofell,itwasimpossibletostopthis
communicationbetweenprisonersandthesecretcouldntbe
ensuredanylonger.Forthistohappen,theywouldvehadto
suppressalltheradiatorsorpostaguardin ontofeachofthe
cells.
Forensuringsecrecy,intheSummerof1954shu erswereplaced
onthecellwindows,inalltheprisonsinRomania.

IN THE CELL WITH BADEA TRIFAN

ImetlawyerTrifanincell32,inGherla.Iheardintheprison
abouttheMariangroup,exchiefofthecityofBrasovandTrifan,
exlegionnaireprefectofBrasov,sentencedtohardyearsin
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prisonsinceAntonescustime.Anothergroupoflegionnaires
sentencedbackthengatheredaroundBiris.Thetwogroupshad
dierenta itudesthough.Oneofthemexperiencedandlivedin
thespiritoftheeasternfathers,andtheotherlivedandthought
inthespiritoftheeasternfathers.
Iwasimpressedbytheunderstandingoftheolderpeople
towardstheyoungpeopletherewhohadbeenenduringthe
denouncements.Forthese,theincorporationintheLegionhad
beendonewithprudenceandhumility,becauseofwhatwehad
experiencedinPitestiandGherla,andasuddenrecoverycould
pushusintoadangerousextreme.Andstill,themostrecovered,
indirectproportionwiththeamountofwhattheyendured
duringthedenouncements.
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Thedetentionperiod19541964,wasforus,theyoung
legionnaires,oneofharmony,understanding,sharingof
knowledgeandlove,indiscriminationto19491954,(veyearsof
intellectualinactivity),thedarkestyearsofourlives.
Thecellshadbeentransformedintohighschoolanduniversity
lectureclasses.Thepeasantsandworkershadlearnedforeign
languages,memorizedhundredsofpoems,knewmath,physics,
chemistryetc.and,notrarely,wereengagedinphilosophic
religiousdiscussions.Eachconvictsharedwiththeotherswhat
hehadaccumulatedintime.
Themeritforthisharmonyandforthecomebackoftheyoung
legionnairesinsidetheLegionsbossomwasespeciallygrantedto
BadeaTrifan,aveteraninprison,havinghadalreadyfourteen
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yearsofexecutedsentence,andtotheprofessor,philosopherand
poetIonMunteanu,whooriginatedinArdeal,Cluj.
Munteanuwaspartofthelegionnaireelite.
ButBadeaTrifanwaspartoftheheroicgenerationofthe
Captain.Becauseofthishewaslookeduponlikeamyth,byus,
theyoungsters;hiswordandthewordofPrinceAlexandru
Ghica,whowasalsointhecell,wasforuslaw.
WhatIwouldliketoemphasizeduringthischapterisespecially,
thewayofthinkingandlivingofthetwoorientations:eastern
andwestern.
Thegreatpersonalitieswhichrepresentedthetwoworlds
interestedmeinaspecialway.AerthehellIjustescaped om
andaermeetingJimboiu,mythirstforknowledgeusheredme
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tondoutsomethingabouttheotherwaysofChristianlivingas
well.
IonMunteanuwasthemostreceptivetowhatwasgoingon
insidetheroom,asoneofthemostproeminentGrecocatholic
intellectualsinCluj.Aneliteintellectual,culturedandtalented:
awriter,philosopherandpoet,hewasruledbythewestern
rationalismanddidntkeepanything omtheorthodox
thinking.Duringdiscussions,hesoughttodrawmeintohis
sphereofinuence,tothinkandlivelikehedid.
HisoppositeinthinkingandChristianorthodoxliving,Badea
Trifan,waswarmerandhiswordwentstraightinmyheart,it
wasntaddressedtoreason.

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Inthisclimate,asonewhowasexperiencingtheorthodoxy,I
choseBadeaTrifanasaguide;IdidntrejectMunteanueither
though.
TheEasterof1955wascomingnear.Ayearpassedsincethe
miracleGoddidwithmeandsinceImetJimboiu.
ThePassionWeekofthisSacredEasterwastrulyananniversary
forme;Iliveditinrepentanceandhumility,mysoulalways
lookinguponGolgotha.Ingeneral,allofuslivedThePassionsof
TheSonOfGodinhumility.
Manytimesweareinclinedtobelieveonlywhatwesee.Thenwe
feellikewedontneedfaithanylonger,becausefaithonly
operateswherewecannotseeandwherethepossibilitiesof
reasonalknowledgebecomeuseless.
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IdidntnoticehowJimboiuexperiencedthePassionWeek,in
1954,becausehewasverydiscreetinhisoutwardbehavior;butI
sawBadeaTrifan, omMondayuntilTheGreatSaturday.
ThethingsIsawinhimweremorethanimpressing.Monday
morningIwantedtositwithhimandtalkaboutthespiritual
experienceofThisSacredWeek.Tomygreatsurprisethough,
whenIcameclosertohim,Inoticedtearsstreaming omhis
eyes.Theonesintheroom,respectinghiswish,reservedhima
spotonthebunk.IwasashamedbecauseIdisturbedhimandall
thePassionWeekIcouldntreachandtalkwithhimagain.He
wassecludedinthiscornerandwascontinuouslycrying,looking
uponthesueringofTheSonOfGodcruciedonGolgothawith
theeyesofhissoulandfeelingHissueringwithhisheart.So
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muchitimpressedthoseinsidetheroomthatthewholeGreat
Weekwasoneofmourning.
AerIsawBadeaTrifanIwasmoved,andIthendirectedmy
a entiontoIonMunteanualsoandIbecameconvincedofthe
dierencebetweentheorthodoxandcatholicliving.Trifanwas
livingbyhisheart,Munteanubyhisreason.Ineversaw
MunteanushedonedropoftearduringThePassionWeek,while
Trifancriedhowamotherwholostheronlybabycries.Trifanfelt
thecalvaryonGoglotha,whileMunteanuthoughtit.
Iwasthenconvincedfortheremainderofmydays,tomimic
JimboiuandBadeaTrifan,asthebrothersclosesttomysoul.
IwonderedhowmanyChristiansonthiseartharecapableofa
livingliketheirs?AndI,couldIevershedatearlookingupon
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Golgothawiththeeyesofmysoul?Yes!Godmademeworthyof
tremblingbeforeHissacrice!
DuringthatsacredEasterIwatchedBadeaTrifansbrightface,
lookinglikeoneofthoseRomanianmysticsfaces,likefather
CleopaIlie,fatherArgatu,fatherArsenieetc.

LEAVING GHERLA

IfinsideGherlaIlivedthedreadofdeathandhellonearth,itis
herewhereIwasrebornalso,Iwasresurrectedandmadeittothe
shoreoutoftheswampofdesperation.Andnotusingmy

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humanhelplessnessandweaknesses,butonlywithGodshelp,
WhomIamnotworthytothank.
InsideGherlaprison,myfaith,mythinking,myunderstanding
andexperiencewerecementedfortheremainderofmylife.Ifin
thosefouryearsIexperiencedhellstortures,itisherealsowhere
Isawthelightleadingtoredemption.Itmayseemparadoxical,
butinthisprison,whichIvecometolove,consideringittobethe
placeofmyresurrection,ImetpeoplewhoIotherwisecouldnt
meetduringmylife.
AttheendofSummer1955,thosewithsentencesofatleast10
yearsormorewerechainedand,alongwiththerstlots,we
startedleavingfortheprisonofAiud.

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WewereinformedtherethattheprisonsinRomaniahadbeen
dividedbytheprisonerspoliticalmembership.
So,thelargestprisoninsidethecountryhadbeenreservedtothe
legionnairepoliticalprisoners,becausetheirnumbersweremore
thanthoseintheotherparties,thesocalledhistoric,whohad
beenputinsmallerprisons,eventhoughtodaytheylie,saying
thatitwasthoughestforthem.
Inthewinterof1960,February,Iwascaughtbythechiefguard
ofthesectionwritingonthesoleofmybootsomerecordings
whichImeanttomemorize.Areportwasledforseverearrest,
whichcouldonlylastamonth omthewardensorders,andifit
neededtobemorethanonemonth,onlybytheMinistryof
InternalAairsorder.
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Aertheyapprovedthereportoftheguard,whohadme
punishedwithseverearrest20days,Iwaspresentedatthe
medicaloce,wheretheycoulddecideifIwascapableof
carryingoutthepunishmentornot.
Onthecellular,atthesecondoor,IonCiocan omGalati,my
excolleagueinthesameyearandclassattheMedicalfacultyin
Iasiwasamedic.Ididntseehimbeforeuntilthen.Atthatdate,
theocialmedicsinAiudwerealsotheBadeafamily.
Aerashortvisit,thiscolleaguewroteaptonmyreport,
althoughIwasthinasaghost.
Beingrevoltedbyhiscriminalbehavior,andtakingadvantageof
themomentaryabsenceoftheguard,Ilookedhimstraightinto
hiseyesandaskedhim:
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Doyouknow,youmurderer,whereyouaresendingme?He
didntreply.HewassureIwontrecognizehimaermy11yearsof
incarceration.
Ithenmeasuredhimheadtotoehewasfatasabullfedforthe
slaughterhouse, omtheminimalfoodgiventotheprisoners
him,whosoldhismedicconscienceforabowloflentil.
LookingathimstraightIresumedmyaccusation:
Hey,murderer,dontyouknowme?
Surprised,hecouldntavoidtheansweranymoreandtoldme:
MisterBordeianu,Iknowyou,butbecauseIcannotstandthe
prisonandhunger,Isoldmyselfasamedic!

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Godshallpunishyou;youareanodiouskiller,youaresending
innocentpeopletodeath,Isaidtohim,thinkingaboutdoctor
Marculescu,whosedignitywasbeingbroughttolightincontrast
withthisbutcher.AccordingtoCiocan,Iwasaptinfull
blownwinter,dressedonlyinsheepskinandamealonceinthree
daystomakeit20daysarrestedinthere.
AsIdidntgetanypackageofclothesinprison,Ididhavewith
me,since1949,inPitesti,oneannelandonepairof
underpants,itspatchessownoneovertheother.Theones
punishedwithseverearrestwereallowedonlytodresswiththe
sheepskin,ashirtandapairofpenitentiaryunderpants,acap,
bootsandthinsocks.

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Iwasthenannouncedbythechiefofsectiontogetreadytobe
transferredontheseverearrestsection;besidemyshirtand
underpantsIputonthethickannelImentionedearlier.
AerthatIwasleadbytheupperoorguardontheseverearrest
section.
Iwillsaysomethingaboutthissection.Itwassituatedonthe
continuationofthemiddlebuildinginAiud.Ithadsmallcells,
cementoors,noheating,asmallwindowintheupperpart,in
thecorner,whichremainedopenduringwinterandshutduring
summerandachamberpotforthenecessities,withnolidonit.
Thewallswerewetanditwassaidthatsaltwasputinsidethose
wallsintentionally.Youdidnthaveanywhereelsetosleepthan
onthechamberpotoronthecement.
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WhenIarrived,thesectionguardlookedatme,measuredme
omheadtotoeandwashappyenoughtoopenthecellsoI
couldgetin,withoutcheckingiftheclothescorrespondedwith
therulesornot.Godgavetheguardthisgoodthought,because
Hismercywaswithme.
IconsideredthistobeGodsmiracle,amiraclewhichhelpedme
avoidcertaindeath.Icouldnthaveresistedinthemiddleof
winteronlydressedbytherules.
Itwassocold,thatthedrinkingwaterwegotonceinthreedays
wasalways ozen.ButbecauseoftheprayerIsurvived.
GodwantedtogivemestrengthsoIcouldmovearoundthecell,
otherwiseIcouldve ozetodeath,andIcouldmoveeventhough

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Ihadsuchaweakenedbody.Everydaythepoliticalocervisited
metoseeifIwasaliveanymore.
ButneartheendofthetormentIcouldntmoveanymore,andI
fellinertlyonthechamberpot.Iwasthenremoved omthecell
bythetwoguards,takenbymyarmpitsandbacktomycell.
Whenthecelldooropened,theguardssaidonethingtomy
comrades:Takehim!,thenabandonedme.Mycomrades
rushedatme,tookmeintheirarms,stretchedmeuponthebed,
undressedmeandstartedtomassagemywholebodyinorderto
de eezeme.
Ineverinmylifefeltsuchawarmgestureof iendshiplikein
thatmoment,theloveofmycomradeswhichcannotbe
expressedinwords.Duringmyabsence,theysavedtheirsliceof
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breadformetohavetoo,whichtheyreceivedinthemorning
alongwiththeirtea.
*
Now,afewwordsconcerningthereeducationinAiud.
InMay1962,Iwastakenoutofmycellandintotheprisonyard.
Ihadonlyoneyearuntilmysentenceexpired.Ididntsee
breakingoutofprisonasasolution;onthecontrary,itwould
havedidnothingbutcomplicatethings,factwhichthepolitical
ocersknewalso.Becauseofthis,Iwastakeninthevegetable
gardensbuilding,whichcouldbefoundatsome2KMaway,on
theshoreoftheriverMures.ThisiswhereIliveduntilNovember.

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Meanwhile,insidetheprisonthereeducationcommenced:some
kindofmasqueradedoneunderthesupervisionofthesecurity
colonelCraciun,theprisonwarden.
InSeptemberOctoberthereeducationatthegardenstartedalso.
AskedifIwilltakepartinthatcircus,Iansweredno.
AttheendofNovember1962,inaSundaymorning,wesaw
insidethecourtyardavanandafewsmallercars.Wewere
orderedtogroupinasquareformationonaeldsimilartoan
amphitheater.Itwasabeautifuldayoutside,sunny.In ontof
thisamphitheaterfourcomradeswerebrought:themath
teacherMunteanu omCluj,thedoctorSercaianu omBuzau,
DutuDumitru,expupilattheOcerMillitarySchoolinPloiesti,

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arrestedandsentencedsinceAntonescustimeandthelastone,
DumitruBordeianu.
Therstaskedtotalkin ontoftheprisonerswasdoctor
Sercaianu,whohadanirreproachablea ireinprison.Hehad
beenpartofthelegionnairerebelliongroupandrefusedto
speak.ProfessorMunteanuwasnext.Heansweredcategorically
no.
Dutu,havingexecuted20yearsofincarceration,hadonlyone
thingtosay:Iwontevenspeaktosuchpeople!
Forme,itwastherstandlastpoliticalspeechIeverspokeinmy
life.Duringthespeech,thefourInternalAairscolonels,the
prisonwardenCraciunandcolonelIvan,werelookingatme
seeminglyhypnotized.Ispokefor20minutesaboutthe
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reeducationatSuceavaandthedenouncementsinPitestiand
Gherla.Theywerealllistening,theprisonersandocials,
curiousandinterestedtoknowwhatIwastalkingabout.Iwas
convincedthatsomeonewillstopme omspeakingbut,tomy
surprise,Iwasallowedtonishmyspeech,endingitwith:I
wontadheretothiscircus,tothismasquerade,becauseIvelived
inthesesituationsforfouryearsalready!.
Theprisonersintheamphitheater,broughttheretoboo,were
muted.Noonesaidaword.Formethiswasthegreatestpolitical
satisfactionlifeoeredtome.
ButinthemomentInished,Iheard,withoutknowingwhere
theordercame om:Putthisbanditinchainsandalltheones
likehim!
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Inamomentsnotice,wewereallfourputinchains,shoved
insidethevanandisolatedonthecellular,eachoneinacell,
untilthestartofMay,1963.
FromthiscellIwastakentoanothercellwhereImetGheorghe
Calciu.Tenyearshadpassedsincewedidntseeeachother.
On15thofMay1963,Calciuwastakentothersthomearrest,
andonthe8thofJune,sameyear,IwastakenalsoinBaragan,in
thesamevillage,Viisoara,intheSloboziadistrict.
In1964Iwasthenreleasedandthen,aerothertwentyveyears
ofbeingmonitoredandstalked,interrogationsandthreats,I
hadthepossibilityofcomingtothe eeworld,inAustralia,
VictoriaState.ItisherewhereIcouldwritethethingsIwroteand
myprintedconfessionscouldseethelightofday.
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CLOSING

BeforeIendmybook,IwouldliketothankmisterHoriaSima
withallmyheart,theChiefoftheLegionnaireMovement,who
advisedmetowritetheseexperiencesabouttheyoung
legionnaires,studentsandpupilsandworkers,whohave
enduredtheterribledramaatPitestiandGherla;withouthis
adviceandhelptheseconfessionscouldnthaveseenthelightof
day.
IbelievethatonlytheoneswhohavebeenthroughPitestiand
Gherlahavetherighttotalkaboutthissieveofsatan,meaning
thedenouncementsperformedinthetwodeathprisons.
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Theoneswhowroteaboutthisdramauntilnow,diditso:some
wrote omthestoriesandfairytalesofothers,whowereonly
marginallypartofthedenouncements;others,possessedand
drivenbyanunstoppablehatredtowardstheLegionnaire
Movement,saidthatthePitestiandGherladenouncements
werentcarriedoutupontheyounglegionnaires.Allthese
denigrators,whoareintheserviceofmanyoccults,withnofear
ofGodandshametowardpeople,lackingthemostbasic
commonsense,GodshalljudgeaccordingtoHisrighteousness
andWill.
Iwillwritebelowaportion omapoemwhichsaysalot,wri en
bytheyoungpoetlegionnaire,AurelVisovan,whoshared

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unforgo enmomentswithmeinthePitestidenouncements,
basementroomno.3.

Pitesti Moment

Stopyourroaringlaughtermadmen!
Insideyourdarklaughtersbloodisboiling,
Fromthegrinofthesatanicstorm
Whodidyoucrucifyagainmadmen?
Whichsacredsonggrindingharditbreaks?!
Oh!Dancesinamacabrerhythm
Apocalypticburstofstrangefuneralsongs
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Darksky,darkbells
Ringingdarkand
Ringsitringsitrings
Undead,ghosts,
AndsomedeadAngel
Who oze,
Goneineternities
Livingdead,ghosts,
Andhowlingofmadmencollapsed
Oh,Lord,whereareyou?!
Whydontyoulightmiracles,

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Heavenlymiracles?!
Whereareyou?
Oh,Lord,whereareYou?!
.
Impenetrablenoanswer
.
PitestiPitestiPitesti

We,theyounglegionnares, omtheyoungestyouth,wereand
areintrenches,hungryandthirsty,despised,humiliated,
persecuted,interrogatedandjudgedunfairly,lockedawayin
campsandprisons,denigrated,permanentlysueringandput
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downlikerabiddogs.Butthepeoplelovedus,becausewewere
engagedinaghtforthem,forthemtonallybeamasteron
theirswathoflandandfortune.
Myconvictionis,asIstatedearlier,thatwhenIwasinterrogated
inthePitestiprison,on26thofOctober1949,bythatRussian
typecharacter,healreadyhadthereeducationplandoneat
Moscow,probablyasStalinsuggestedandwiththeknowledgeof
thethreecommunistministers:AnnaPauker,TeohariGeorgescu
andVasileLuca.TheseformedtheteamoftheCentral
CommunistPartybureau(ofcourse,havingtheapprovalof
GheorghiuDejalso)who,withtheaidofgeneralNicolski,the
Securitycommander,andoneofhisaids,colonelZeller,

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personallyorchestrated,orderedandveriedthedenouncements
atPitestiandGherla.
Theyweretheoneswhoinitiatedandappliedtheplanforthe
burialoftheyounglegionnaires.So,theplanwasntmadeforany
otheryoungRomaniangroupofpeople,butonlyagainstthe
younglegionnaires,whohadcontinuityinghtingand
persecution om1933to1948anideologyandeducation
verywellputinplace.Onthedatewhenthedenouncementswere
started,theyoungnonlegionnairesrepresentedatinynumber.
Thelegionnairepupilswereover90%,taken omallthe
BrotherhoodsoftheCrosscountrywide.
AtSuceava,in1948,theprisonnumberedafewhundreds
legionnaires.
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AtSuceava,in1948,theprisonnumberedafewhundreds
legionnairepupils.Herealsocouldbefoundalotofstudents
omtheLegionnaireUniversityCenterIasi,thentheleadersof
theBrotherhoodoftheCross omtheMoldavianhighschools:
ComsaIeronim,C.Strachinariu,M.Lates,L.Soltuz,etc
Theyoungstudentsandpupilsnonlegionnaireswhoendured
thedenouncementsatPitestiandGherlacouldnominallyshow
manyofthemwerekilled,howmanytriedtocommitsuicide,
howmanydidcommitsuicide,howmanywentmad.Theyoung
legionnairesdidntneeddenouncementsorreeducation.
Theyoungnonlegionnaireswereregardedinprisonassonsof
kulaks61,unlocked62ocers,priests,policemenandbobbies,or

61
62

Wealthypeasants
Ocersofthelastregimewhowereadmi edintothisone,communist

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asbourgeoisrepresentatives,kickedout omhighschoolsor
faculties.Iwillgiveastrikingexampleforargumentssake:In
theMedicalUniversityinIasi,whichinits6yearsofstudies
numberedsome2000students,onlyoneofthosestudents,a
nonlegionnaire,memberofthepeasantparty,wasarrestedand
takentoSuceava,andaerhisinterrogationhewasimmediately
released omprison.
Inmyyear,whereweweresome300students,onlythe
legionnaireswerearrestedandsentencedtohardyearsbehind
bars;theothers,whoremained ee,manyofthemwouldenter
thecommunistparty,eitherasactivists,securitypersonneloras
trustedpeopleplacedinhighplaces.Soitwasnoneedforthem
tobedenouncedorreeducatedanylonger,becausethey
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themselvesdoneit,withnohelpwhatsoever.Fromuniversity
professorstothelaststudent,theytookadvantageofthe
circumstancestondshelter,shamelesslyirtingwiththe
invaderwhileforge ingthatournationwasatthebrinkof
collapse,itsveryprivateessencethreatenedtobedecomposed.
Theyounglegionnairesrealizedthisdangerandengagedwithall
theirstrengthtoavoidtheirreparable.ThefactthatthePitesti
andGherladenouncementswerespearheadedexclusively
towardstheyounglegionnairesisprovenbythethousands
sacricesinitsranks.Andiftherewasstillsomeonetocontest
thisfact,itwouldbesomeonethatirtedwiththeinvaderbefore.
Butthehistorydidrecordthesacricebroughtonthecountrys
altarofthosekilled,pushedtosuicide,thosegonemad,diseased
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anddeadbecauseofthetorturesandinhumanedetention
conditions.Iamtherepresentativeofalltheexyoung
legionnaires,sayingthat,ifthesewouldhavetochooseagain
betweenanewwaveofdenouncementsanddeath,Iamcertain
theywouldpreerdeath.Imyselfwouldnthesitatetochoose
deathonemoment,insteadofthecontinuoustorturesofthe
denouncementswhichIendured.
Herestheconclusionofthedenouncements:
youshouldneverbelievewhatthebanditsays;
youshouldnttrustthebandit;
thebanditisneverhonest;
thebanditalwaystriestohidewhatheknows;

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thebandittriestomislead;
thebanditcannotbereeducated,sohemustbedenounced
(tortured)continuously,untilhedies.
ThesethingsIhearddozensoftimes omTurcanuandhis
collaboratorsmouth.FromtheinterrogationIwassubmi edto
on26thofOctober1949, omallthethingsNicolskistated(and
later omthestatementsofDumitrescutheprisonwarden,the
rstguardandotherguards),asaleitmotif,thefollowingwords
wentthroughmymind:Inthisprison,youbandits
legionnaires,arearound80%andaretryingtoconvertthe
otherstoo,drawingthemintoyourcamp,tomakethem
legionnaires,wewillknowevenyourverythoughts,maybe
lateryoullsayyouarentalegionnaireanymore,you,bandit
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legionnaires,areinourhandsandwewilldowithyouaswe
pleasebecausewehavewaysto,evenifyouweremade om
reinforcedconcretewewillstillsoenyou.
Withfewminorexceptions,themostofuswerepossessed.Some
ofthemarealivetoday.Otherssueredamartyrsdeath.The
onesmurderedhavetobeexcluded,andthosewhowentmadare
aspecialcategory.
Themostofuslivedacollectivemadness,thepossessionand
dehumanization,reachingattheheightsofdespair.
Thedoseoftortureadministeredtothosewhowerebeing
denounceddependedon:
beliefinGodandChristianmoralvalues;

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beliefandfondnessconcerningtheLegionnaireMovement,the
legionnairedoctrine,theCaptainandthelegionnairesuperiors
and,especially,concerningHoriaSima;
thehistory,functionandpositionintheLegionnaire
Movement;
theintellectualandprofessionalskills;
thegradeofinuenceontheotheryoungmen;
themoralwayoflifeandcombatstrength;
Thesetortures,unprecedentedinthehistoryofdetention,maybe
withtheexceptionofAsia,wereappliedusingus,byus,forus.

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Whatcouldbeobservedaerthefulllmentofthisplan?Inthe
plantheyforesawcrushingtheyounglegionnairesforgood,but
theywerewrong,fulllingonlyapproximately10%ofthisplan.
Theywerentexpectingsomanydead,suicidea empts,
madmen,andsomuchresistance omthelegionnaireyouths.
Althoughtheymanagedtoextract omus,usingunbearable
tortures,over90%ofwhatwedidntdeclareintheocial
interrogations,theycouldnttakethefaithinGod omour
hearts,theChristianandLegionsmoralvalues.
Theydidntsucceedofmakingallofuspossessedorirreversible
killersandtheycouldonlyuseveryfewpeopleasinformers,in
prisonoroutsideofit.

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Thedistrustbetweenuswasonlytransientandthesuperior
forumsdidntexpectourrecoveryandunity.
Theycouldntkeepthedenouncementsasecret.
Insteadofbeingdestroyedandburied,historyplacedusonthe
incredibleheightsofpatienceandresistance,asrepresentatives
oftheghtforournation,againstevilandbolshevism.
Isawtheonesresponsibleforthisgenocide,andvictims,Irepeat,
were90%legionnaires.TheChristianessenceofthisyouthis
worthnoting:theymanagedtogettosuchanadvancedstageof
living,thattheyforgavethosewhotorturedthem,comrades,
colleaguesorenemies.
ThetorturesinthedenouncementsinPitestiandGherlawerent
appliedtoanyotherstudentyouthinthecommunistcountries
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andwearentsuretheywouldhavebeenappliedeveninthe
U.S.S.R.sgulags.
TheLegionnaireMovementisuniqueintheworld,aspolitics
andpurpose,asthedenouncementswiththeiruniquemethods
ofcontinuoustorture,areuniquetoo.
ToallourenemieswereplyusingthewordsofthePharisee
Gamaliel:<<Therefore,inthepresentcaseIadviseyou:Leave
thesemenalone!Letthemgo!Foriftheirpurposeoractivityisof
humanorigin,itwillfail.Butifitis omGod,youwillnotbe
abletostopthesemen;youwillonlyndyourselvesghting
againstGod.>>(Acts5,3839)
So,iftheLegionisagainstGod,itwillfail,butifitservesGod
andthenation,noonecouldbeabletostopit.ThePatronSaint
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OftheLegionisTheArchangelMichael,andthemasterofall
thosefullofhatredissatan,becausehatredisthedevilsweapon.
Iwillsayapoem ommymemorywri enbyanunknownyoung
legionnaire,whowaskilledormaybehewentmadbecauseof
continuoustortures:

TheAccacias
Withourrootsdeepsunkintomud,
WeareTheAccaciaswithourheavystrongwood,
Welooktotheskyplacingourbranchesonourforeheads.
Himwhogaveusbirth,dying,hewished
ForustobeAccacias:ournationsstrongshield.

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WeareAccaciasandwegroweverywhere
Onsteepvalleys,onhillocksandpodzol,
Onthenationsnakedsoulandbody,
Ongrovesdepletedbysuerings.
WeareTheAccaciasandwegrowjustabouteverywhere.

Wegrowasfastasastorm.
Theexecutionersfearedourenthusiasmsomuch,
Asthepinegrowsinoneyear,
Wegrowinonemonth.

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Wedontwanttoprickanyone,
Butourenemiesdeadlyhitus,
Wishingthatpersecutionwouldbeourfate,
Thethornsbeingouronlygivendefense

Aburninglongingleadsustoourdestiny
Andwhereoneofusfallswounded,
Onethousandsproutstakeitsplace.
WeareTheAccaciasandgrow omtheearth,
TreesofRomaniantraditionandcreed.

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Ontopofeverypoliticalviewandeverything,ourlimitlessfaith
inGodremains,theloveforHimandourneighbor,faithinthe
salvationofourRomaniannationandallthenations.
WehuglikebrothersthoseRomanianswhowenttoprisonlike
wedid,noma ertheirviews,religiousorothertype,fortheir
a itude,manhoodandcouragetostandupagainstsatans
ideology,communism.
Wehonorthosekilledormurderedininterrogations,campsand
prisons.
Wedontforget,andwerememberthelivingandthedeadinthe
communistcampwiththesameconsideration,allwhosuered
anddiedinsideprisons.Forallthesewelightacandlebeforethe
SacredAltars
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Final note

Whensaintswillstopexistingontheearth,thentheendofthe
worldwillcometoo.
SaintEphremustheSyrian
Becausehethoughthimselfasrighteous,andinordertobeseen
thatheindeedwasrighteous,GodallowedJob,therstconfessor
ofGod,tobeinthehandsofsatan,forawhile.
DumitruBordeianusbookisadissertationofcontemporary
demonology,asnoneother,exceptTheHymnfortheCarried
Cross,byVirgilMaxim.Itissospecialbecause,inthetimesof
organizedblindnessanddeceptionwearelivingnow,nooneis
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abletoseetheperspectiveofthecosmicba leweareallbeing
partof.Withourheartshardenedbysins,welookbutcannot
see,hearbutdonotunderstandthatthewarsatanrages
againstGodandHisChrist,usingpeopleashisarmy,iscoming
toitsnalba le.
Intheendtimes,foroursins,Andnowyouknowwhatis
holdinghimback,sothathemayberevealedatthepropertime.
Forthesecretpoweroflawlessnessisalreadyatwork;buttheone
whonowholdsitbackwillcontinuetodosountilheistakenout
oftheway.(2Thessalonians2,7).
TheChristianviewoftheworlddoesntexistasawholeanymore,
andsatanis eed omhisprison,wheretheChurchofChrist
waskeepinglockedup<<togooutanddeceivethenationsinthe
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fourcornersoftheearthGogandMagogandtogather
themforba le>>(Revelation20,78)preparingthemtobowto
theirAntichristattheendoftimes.
ThischainofeventsstartedwiththemasonicrebellioninFrance,
alongwiththegreatrevolutionofthe eedomofunchained
evil,ofequalityininhumanityandofthe aternityofmenwith
devils,untiltheirsoulswillbeone(SaintNiltheAthonite).
Then,themonasteriesoftheFrenchheresiarchswere
transformedintomasonicclubs(thejacobines,theoneswho
occupiedtheplaceofSaintJacob,beingthemostfamous),andin
thepapaltemplestheidoloflucifericreasonwasenthroned.
Inthe19thCentury,theFrenchplaguespreadtothefaithful
east.BecauseitcouldnthittheOrthodoxy ontally,using
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humanism,meaningthecultofman,deviateditontojudeo
protestantandcatholicviews.
Onlylater,inthelasthundredyears,theycouldimplementthe
nextstage,thatisphysicallydestroyingtheChurch:rstin
Russia,thenintheotherOrthodoxcountries.Aspecialcase,and
verysimilar,isSpain,wheretheholyrelicsoftheorthodoxsaints
(saintscanonlybeorthodox)wereremartyrizedandtheirholy
placesblownskyhighin1936.
Andsoherewearelivingthis ighteningcenturyofdemonic
triumphandjoy,describedbythosewithspiritualpowerto
foresee.SaintIgnatiusBriancianinov, ightened,tellsthestoryof
asmith omnearPetersburg,atthestartofourcenturyof
revolutionsanddisbelief.Atnoon,thesmithsawalargegroupof
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demonssi ingonthebranchesoftheforesttrees,peculiarly
dressed,wearingsharppointedhats,wildlysinging:Ourtime!
Our eedom!
Andbecauseintheorthodoxcountries(exceptGreeceand
Serbia)hecouldntprovokegeneralapostasyusingsignsand
wondersashedidinthehereticalandpaganWest,theenemy
hadtobuildtherealcommunisthell,inOrthodoxRussiarst,
andthenRomania,wheresomethingundreamedofbysatan
andhisservantsoccured:thedemolishingofthechurch om
christianshearts,oftheirhiddenplaceofworship,ofGods
KingdomofHeaven,whichisinsideus.
Aerahundredyearsofdevastatingantichristicliberalism,in
Romaniahadappeared,wondrously,aertheFirstWorldWar,a
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generationofbelievers,unseenbefore,withtheexceptionofthe
rstChristianpersecutions.Thesewerethelegionnaires,
gatheredaroundtheiconofSaintArchangelMichael,theAngel
whostoppedthosewithoutaphysicalbody omfalling.
Againstthesepeopletheevilenemyspearheadedhisa acks,ina
countrywhichwasinthehandsoftheunfaithfulsince1918,
undertheleadershipofdemonpossessedindividualslikeCarol
theSecondandAntonescu.

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Translator'snote:SorrybutIhavetosaysomethingaswell,aboutanothermartyr,morecontemporarytous.

Thisyear,2012,IwenttoSpainandIwasworkingforthisman,Albaro.50KmoutsideofMadridalmost,ina
smallcampnamed"GesmoAlto".Rightacrosshishousethereisavilla,whereagroupofindividualswere
keeping2girlshostage:oneRomanianandoneAmerican.Someofthosewhowererapingthem,weremuslim.
Idon'tknowforhowlongtheyhadbeenthere.TheRomanianoneIalwaysheardscreaming.TheAmericanone
laidquiet.TheybeatherandabusedhertheAmericanone,andofcourserapedher.Theywererapingthem
both.Andonenight,oneofthosepeople,awomanpartofthegroup,askedtheAmericangirlifshebelievesin
allah,theirgod.Sherepliedno,thatsheonlybelievesinJesus.Immediatelyaerthewomanofthehousecame
outsidein ontofthevilla,wherethemenweresi ingforachat,atnight,oneofthemhearingtheanswer om
thewomansmouth,takesouthispistolandgoesinsidewheretheAmericangirlwasbeingheldandshootsher
threetimes.Thesounddissipatedupwardsintothecoldairofthenight.Duringthesamenight,theytookher
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bodyintooneoftheircarsanddumpedhersomewherenearby,inthewilderness.IheardTheRomanianone
screaming:"Iwanttodietoo!",seeingwhathappenedwithherAmericancompanionofsuering.This
happenedinAugust,2012.IdonotknowiftheRomanianoneisstillaliveatthisdateNovember9,2012,Friday.
Ijustwantedtotellmystoryaswell.TherearemanymorecaseslikethisinSpain,thiswasnottheonlyonei
havewitnessed!!!)

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