Conducator: Nicolae Ceausescu and The Appropriation Of Romanian National Identity Under Socialism

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West Point Press
"In 1968, the Warsaw Pact invaded Czechoslovakia to counter the liberal reforms of Alexander Dubcek. (1) Of the Warsaw Pact Leaders, only Nicolae Ceausescu of Romania publicly condemned the invasion, winning praise from the West and China. Even though he was, in this one instance, willing to oppose Soviet domination of the Eastern bloc, he was no reformer. Ceausescu truly believed in the Stalinist cause. His harsh domestic policies reflected the simple, ideological thinking of his revolutionary peasant heritage. Born impoverished, Ceausescu joined the communists upon moving to Bucharest and because of this political activity, spent much of his youth in Romanian prison. After WWII Soviet troops elevated the Romanian Communist Party (RCP) to power in the country. As a result, Romanians widely viewed the RCP as illegitimate and foreign dominated due to its external imposition. The RCP struggled to change this view. Starting in 1964, after Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej’s death, Ceausescu energetically pursued Stalinist policies at home while attempting to appeal to Romanian nationalism abroad. Rejecting internal reform, the RCP under Ceausescu attempted to assert its political legitimacy by acting independently in foreign policy for the Romanian national interest...."
Berardino, Daniel. “Conducator: Nicolae Ceausescu and The Appropriation Of Romanian National Identity Under Socialism.” Report: West Point Undergraduate Historical Review. Volume 8 (2018): 40-45