They are Legion, and they are scum

A timely news story, following the review we published on Monday of Roland Clark’s book about the Romanian Legionary Movement of the 1930s and 1940s.

Romania’s Holocaust Institute on Wednesday protested the appointment of a well-known journalist to the board of the country’s public television station, saying the move is disrespectful to the victims of the Holocaust. According to the institute, the journalist in question – Oana Stanciulescu – has in the past written articles praising Legionaries killed in Spain fighting for Franco, as well as Nae Ionescu – one of the Legion’s leading theorists – and Romania’s wartime dictator Ion Antonescu.

In parliament yesterday – when Stanciulescu’s appointment was debated and approved – one MP, Cristina Anghel, praised the Legion, while another, Puiu Hasotti, recited the poetry of the notorious Radu Gyr, commander of one of the Legion’s death squads.

Just another day in Romania’s delightful parliament.

Here’s the full AP story.

Here is the official statement from the Holocaust Institute (in Romanian).

PS Anyone who wants to deny the Holocaust in Romania and/or comment in support of the ‘good Christian boys’ of the Legion can read what follows (taken directly from pages 113-4 of the final report of the Wiesel Commission, which investigated the Holocaust in Romania).

Then they can fuck off.

The minister of interior ordered the burning of Jewish districts on January 22, 1941; this signaled the beginning of the pogrom. Yet, the attack on the two Jewish districts as
well as on neighboring districts inhabited by Jews had, in effect, been launched at noon the day before. Moreover, by January 20, 1941, the Legion had already started to launch mass arrests of Jews, taking those apprehended to the Bucharest Prefecture. Almost two thousand Jews, men and women from fifteen to eighty-five years old, were abusively detained and then taken to the Legion’s fourteen torture centers (police stations, the Bucharest Prefecture, the Legion headquarters, Codreanu’’s farm, the Jilava town hall, occupied Jewish buildings, and the Bucharest slaughterhouse). The arrested included wealthy Jews and employees of Jewish public organizations.

The Bucharest slaughterhouse was the site of the most atrocious tortures. On the last day of the rebellion, fifteen Jews were driven from the Prefecture to the slaughterhouse, where all of them were tortured and/or shot to death. Antonescu appointed a military prosecutor to investigate the events. He reported that he recognized three of his acquaintances among the professionally tortured bodies (lawyer Millo Beiler and the Rauch brothers). He added, The bodies of the dead were hanged on the hooks used by slaughterers. Mihai Antonescu’’s secretary confirmed the military prosecutor’s description and added that some of the victims were hooked up while still alive, to allow the torturers to chop up their bodies.

Evidence indicates that the CML actively participated in the pogrom torturing, killing, and looting. CML headquarters was a particularly frightening torture center. There, CML teams tortured hundreds and shot dozens of men and women. Also, members of the CML selected ninety Jews of the two hundred who had been tortured in the CML torture centers and drove them in trucks to the Jilava forest. After leaving the trucks, these Jews were shot from a two-foot distance. Eighty-six naked bodies were found lying in the snow-covered forest, and the mouths of those with
gold teeth were horribly mutilated. Rabbi Tzwi Gutman, who was shot twice, was among the few who did not die in this massacre. His two sons were killed. In all, 125 Jews were killed during the Bucharest pogrom. The Bucharest pogrom also introduced the chapter of mass abuse of Jewish women, who were sometimes raped in the presence of their families.

In addition to the slaughter, there were also severe Legionary attacks on synagogues during the Bucharest pogrom. The assault began in the afternoon of January 21, climaxed during that evening, and continued the next day. This was a predictable turn of events because, since its establishment in 1927, Iron Guard rallies typically ended in acts of vandalism directed against synagogues. The Legionnaires attacked all synagogues at the same time, burning Torah scrolls, pillaging religious objects, money, furniture and valuables, and vandalizing the interior of the synagogues. In some instances, the Legionnaires began their attacks during the prayer, which happened at the Coral Temple (those who were present at the time were taken to Jilava and killed). In the end, the perpetrators set the synagogues on fire, and two burnt entirely to the ground. One of these was the Cahal Grande Synagogue, one of the most beautiful in Europe. When fire brigades alarmed that the fire might reach adjoining buildings came to put it out, they were prevented from doing so by the Legionnaires overseeing the scene. Antonescu’’s military prosecutor who investigated the events gave a graphic description of what he saw: The Spanish Temple seemed like a giant torch that lugubriously lit the capital’’s sky. The Legionnaires performed a devilish dance next to the fire while singing ‘The Aria of Legionnaire Youth’ and some were kicking three naked women into the fire. The wretched victims’’ shrieks of despair tore through the sky.

Finally, the Legionnaires, their affiliated organizations, and regular mobs all participated in destroying and pillaging Jewish commercial and private property during the pogrom. Some homes were burned down or completely demolished. In total, 1,274 buildings commercial and residential were destroyed.

64 thoughts on “They are Legion, and they are scum

  1. Fuck Romania’s Holocaust Institute. A bunch of corrupt scumbags wasting away the State’s money. I would have it dissolved today if I were in power.

    About the Holocaust: as I said, I don’t give a monkey’s ass about it.

    I will vote for any party who promises to dissolve Romanian’s Holocaust Institute, which is a terrible waste of money!

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      1. Yeah, the Holocaust Institute and the Elie Wiesel are just manipulating monekys, it’s true the Legion had its bad parts but most of the atrocities they are charged with are invented by the USSR and communists. If the owner of the blog would be smart he would find out that the Legion was exonarated of war crimes by the Nurenburg court

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      1. I said ‘better Franco than the Communists on the other side’ I did not say that everyone on the Republican side was Communist. But I think the Communists would have taken over had the government won – Stanley Payne thinks that and he is the leading authority on Franco. Franco was a bad, brutal, cruel man, not someone I admire, and his rule was a dictatorship without legitimacy, but he did save Spain from Communism and from the modern world. And his Spain, without divorce, abortion or feminism had certain charms.

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      2. I don’t usually discuss abortion, because it is very easy to be facile and make easy points, though I am against it.

        The paradox is that Romania is wonderful because it was cut off from the modern world but Communism which cut it off is evil and destructive. Franco cut Spain off from modernity though to a very much lesser extent and I wonder what Franco’s Spain was like. Everyone I’ve ever met who lived there under him told me it was a wonderful time, but I wouldn’t have liked it despite its reactionary qualities – I always kick against the traces and I love freedom more than anything. Salazar was more benign than Franco, did some good things and I love one thing Salazar did – personally intervening to prevent Coca Cola selling its disgusting drink in Portugal. Romania in contrast under Ceausescu imported Pepsi – Phil Bloom was the Sales Director back in the 1970s. One wonders how that went.

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      3. The only reason that communists had the ascendancy in the Republican side in Spain was that the UK, France and the US refused to help the democratically elected government, as the only money and arms came from the Soviets, the communist group took power.

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      4. 100% with you. You forgot to add: with private property respected and with a market economy and that is why today economically Spain and Romania (and all former communist countries in fact) seem to be from different continents.

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    1. I don’t think Walter Roman was the worst “Romanian” in a long list… Vladimir Tismaneanu, a “Romanian” himself who wrote a study about the “Romanian” Communist Party, “Stalinism for all Seasons”, doesn’t spare them at all (the “Romanians”). That is why he commands great respect among the moderate right in Romania (Liiceanu, Plesu, etc.). His political position is neo-conservatism. However, he doesn’t take into consideration ethnicity as the motivation for becoming a communist revolutionary. Obviously, he wants to remain a mainstream academic/writer… Because the Communist International was something more like the EU than a true “brotherhood of people”… All nationalities and ethnic groups comprising it had their own private agenda. For a while they were merely “fellow travellers” (to use their jargon)… Obviously, Gheorghiu Dej and Ana Pauker had different reasons for joining the communist movement and later on those reasons would clash head on.

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  2. This is chilling stuff, Craig. Unfortunately, sympathy for this group will probably always exist in the margins. In the US we still have to deal with a disappointingly strong (though by no means majority) opinion among southern whites that slavery wasn’t as bad as everyone says.

    The trick is keeping it a fringe opinion…

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  3. The Legion certainly were responsible for many murders and atrocities in those terrible 3 days when they seized Bucharest and before when they shared power. However Ernest Latham who investigated the slaughterhouse story told me it is certainly not true and was invented in the USSR. Nicholas Nagy-Talavera in a footnote to the 2nd edition of his ‘The Greenshirts and Others’ said that it was doubtful. Many legionaries after 1944 fought against the Communists for years.

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    1. Hitler fought against communists for years, didn’t he? As for the stories being invented, what utter nonsense. The photos of the dead, mutilated bodies speak volumes. Please take your fascist propaganda elsewhere.

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      1. The American historian of Romania Ernest Latham told me that, when talking to him, the Director of the Holocaust Museum in Washington DC agreed ‘reluctantly’ that the slaughter-house story was not true. Ernest is not a fascist or anti-Semite any more than I. Nicholas Nagy-Talavera, who came to doubt the truth of the story, can surely be considered objective as he was not only a very good historian and a Jew but was in Auschwitz.

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    2. The American ambassador to Romania Franklin Mott Gunther who toured the meat-packing plant where the Jews were slaughtered with the placards reading “Kosher meat” on them reported back to Washington: “Sixty Jewish corpses were discovered on the hooks used for carcasses. They were all skinned… and the quantity of blood about was evidence that they had been skinned alive”. Gunther wrote he was especially shocked that one of the Jewish victims hanging on the meat hooks was a 5-year-old girl. (Simpson, Christopher Blowback America’s Recruitment of Nazis and its Effects on the Cold War, New York: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1988 page 255).
      I’m sure the American ambassador’s story was NOT invented in the USSR. 🙂

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      1. ISIS was invented at the White House and Pentagon, so anything is possible. Just like Rudy Giuliani said yesterday: “Hillary Clinton is a founding member of ISIS”…

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  4. Hear, hear Craig! It seems to me that the Romanian society is polarizing into two camps. Those who praise the good old legionaries and the “mare patriot” Antonescu, and those who honor the good old times from the “Epoca de Aur” and his great leader the “mare patriot” Ceausescu. All the rest (us) are cowards and traitors. Welcome to Romania 2.0

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      1. Whether or not Ceausescu paid off the national debt (which is a moot point), it glosses over the fact that the bulk of the debt was only acquired by Ceausescu’s hamfisted and incompetent headlong rush into unsustainable models of heavy industry, building crap that nobody wanted, miles away from its raw materials and supposed markets.

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      2. If Ceausescu was bad, how come so many people are voting for Sanders in the States? Sanders is just like Ceausescu in many ways and his supporters are Communists and Socialists.

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      3. That wins the award for “biggest non-sequitur of the week”.

        The similarities between Sanders and Ceausescu are so general and trivial that they apply to just about any two randomly-selected people you may care to name.

        As a piece of political analysis that contribution is about as valid as astrology. Voting for Sanders doesn’t have any relevance to the historical legacy of Ceausescu, Pol Pot, Nelson Mandela or my left testicle.

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      4. I watched his speeches. He’s against capitalists and capitalism in a Ceausescu-like manner.

        If he were a nationalist, we could ask ourselves if he isn’t actually the reincarnation of Ceausescu.

        Then again, the Bolshevik commies who came in power in Romania after 1948 weren’t nationalists at all, they were globalists just like Sanders. Ceausescu was much more evolved than Sanders, actually.

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    1. And you find this fair? When it came to the Mohamed cartoons liberals cried: “freedom of speech is sacred in Europe”, “we have the right to offend” (which they do with gusto, see Charlie Hebdo after the attacks). What about offending Jews too?…

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      1. What about denying that the Earth is round or that it circumnavigates the Sun? Should they be punishable too?… Think Craig, think… BTW, do you know anybody who offends Jews and is not called by them an “anti-Semite”?…

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      2. People who think the earth is flat do not tend to support fascist regimes.

        Why are you making this all about the Jews? (Although it is clear you have a problem with them). This is about common decency, right versus wrong. And right now you are on the wrong side.

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      3. 1. I am not supporting Fascism. See one of my comments to Paul Wood. I am not supporting “anti-Semitism” (whatever it means) either.

        For you, probably, Fascism = Anti-Semitism. (This is a common position among chauvinist Jews). But that is not right. Not all Fascist parties were anti-Semitic, and not all anti-Semites fascists. Furthermore, Jews themselves created such parties if you consider Fascism equal with far-right. For short, Fascism and anti-Semitism are different things. One is a political ideology the other is a visceral reaction to Jewish chauvinism (IMHO).

        2. Please reread what I said about “philo-Semitism” being the mirror image to “anti-Semitism”. If one is irrational so must be the other. The sound, healthy attitude should be a cold, impartial, critical attitude towards all nations and their discourses. Your love of the Japanese should not be a reason to loath the Chinese, their antagonists throughout history, and vice versa. You can do, of course, but then you must admit that you are not impartial with the Chinese. That you are a “Sinophobe”.

        3. It is not me who has a “problem with them” but you. I’ve asked you whether you are Jewish or not and I said that I wouldn’t have had problems with your article if you had answered yes. I would have posted something of this sort: “What about Ana Pauker, Leo Trotsky, Matyas Rakosi, the Stalinist dictator of Hungary, any remorse for them” and moved one. I do not troll Jewish sites! It is their territory and I am a respectful person.

        I am neither a Romanian by ethnicity (I am only 1/4 Romanian). I consider myself an agnosticist. So it is neither Romanian or Orthodox chauvinism that motivates me.

        What motivates me is a characteristic of the people with my personality type: they are bothered by unfairness, lies, inconsistencies.

        The child in Andersen’s story who shouted “but he hasn’t got anything on” shares the same trait.

        Ponder on the words of American intellectual Joseph Sobran: “A hypocritical etiquette forces us to pretend that the Jews are powerless victims; and if you don’t respect their victimhood, they’ll destroy you.”

        It is you who have a problem with them not me! My conscience is crystal clear!

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      4. I offend my jewish friends all the time and they often offend me. The thing is, the source of offence is stuff like remarks about the football teams we support, or taste in music. It isn’t about racial identity or religion. If you see a jewish person and immediately think “Jew” and immediately start banging on about Israel, Palestine, the Holocaust, Lizards or the Protocols of the Elders of Zion then it’s you who is the problem, not them.

        Incidentally, if people proclaim that the earth is flat it doesn’t end up with planes and satellites flying off-course. When people start denying the holocaust then it’s not long before jewish people and their artefacts start getting damaged by those doing the denying.

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      5. 1. Why aren’t you more courageous, like me, take my example 😉 and be more critical of their stories (history narrative) as Craig is critical with the narrative of Romanians?… Then you will know a different aspect of your Jewish friends…. But if you always play by their tunes of course they will be your BFF. But I am the sort of person for whom truth (pertinence) trumps friendship. Amicus Plato, sed magis amica veritas. Different values, you see. I dot like to be domesticated even if that means to eat better…

        2. “start banging on about Israel, Palestine, the Holocaust, Lizards or the Protocols of the Elders of Zion then it’s you who is the problem, not them.”

        Did I mention any of those things? I am not a moron. Unfortunately, that makes me more annoying…

        3. “When people start denying the holocaust then it’s not long before jewish people and their artefacts start getting damaged by those doing the denying.”
        Why, is there a mathematical proof to it? And why your argument doesn’t apply to Muslims too? Remember the Crusades?… And more importantly, why your argument doesn’t apply to countries such as the USA, UK and Australia where the “negation of the Holocaust” is not a crime? Is the USA less democratic than Romania?… But that is too much for you for today…

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  5. Hi, Craig, my first post on YOUR site. A subject of interest for me.

    If you are Jewish or a philo-Semite (see I don’t say “on the payroll…” 😉 but you nee to admit that if “anti-Semites” are crazy so must be their mirror image, the “philo-Semites”, unless you are “a patriot of the world alone, the friend of every country but his one” in which case you would be a “self-hating Brit, American?”, so you would still hate a nation/ethnic group be that your own…) so if you are Jewish or an irrational philo-Semite have no issues with your article.

    On the hypothesis that you are not the two things mentioned above I continue.
    1. Firstly, the title is wrong, you should have written: “They WERE legion” but even that is most probably wrong. Who knows what was the real popularity level of the Iron Guard in the interwar Romanian?

    2. Radu Gyr is a great poet. I know Romanina and I can tell. As a POET he is great. Romanians have the right to recite some of his great poems.

    2. You should know that Romania’s Holocaust Institute is run by a chauvinist Romanian Jew, Alexandru R. Florian, the son of a Marxist philosopher and one time the rector of the Romanian Communist Party university, the Ștefan Gheorghiu Academy, – Radu Florian. (I would like to ask you: do you have problems also with Jewish nationalism or only with the Romanian one. Is Jewish chauvinism OK? Or maybe for you Jews are always right?… )
    3. Alexandru R. Florian is a controversial figure in Romania even among the moderate intellectuals. Because you don’t know Romanian and therefore do not read the Romanian press you probably are not aware of this fact. Andrei Plesu is a great and respected public intellectual (this is his objective standing in Romania, not my judgement). He has criticised A. Florian. A. Florian entered a brawl with moderate Romanians when he opposed the naming of streets and the awarding of “honoured citizen” by the mayorships of some towns in Romania of people associated with the Iron Guard or with the Antonescu regime: see the cases of Mircea Vulcanescu, Vintila Horea, Valeriu Gafencu and others. Put in Google News those names and Alexandru R. Florian and with automatic translation try to understand yourself the issues. Andrei Plesu criticised A. Florian on Vintila Horia.
    4. Emil Cioran (though I don’t like to plead my case ;-), Mircea Eliade, Nae Ionescu (great popular philosopher and mentor of great intellectuals), Constantin Noica, in fact almost all the who’s who of the young intellectuals of the interwar Romania (the Generation 1927, or the Group Criterion) – including Jewish Mihail Sebastian and Nicolae Steinhardt!- are tainted with their association with the Iron Guard, fascism or “anti-Semitism”. A. Florian didn’t dare to attack those great Romanian figures but the arguments he uses for minor figures would apply to them too.
    (Mihail Sebastian was a pupil of Nae Ionescu and wrote pro-fascist articles in the latter’s newspaper, and Nicole Steinhardt who in later years converted to the Orthodox faith wrote “anti-Semitic” things and portrayed positively the Legionnaires he met in prison in his “The Journal of Happiness”.)
    5.

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    1. Where to start?

      1. The Legion had a large amount of sympathy amongst a large proportion of the population. The only real figures we have to go on are 1937’s election results, when its political wing Totul pentru tara took 16 per cent of the vote. However, limited franchise (women were still denied the vote in national elections) makes this not entirely useful as a gauge of popularity. It is also worth pointing out that the so-called National Christian Party which took nine per cent also had an anti-Semitic agenda.

      2. Why do you claim that Florian is a ‘chauvinist Jew’? I have met him: he is not. As for his parentage, is Romania now North Korea, where the sins of the fathers are also those of the sons?

      3. I don’t ‘know’ Romanian? As you wish. However, I do read the Romanian press (it is hardly worth reading, however). It is right and proper that streets are not named after legion members. Of those legionnaires you name: Vulvanescu, Horea and Gafencu we need to make a distinction between the first two (who were sympathisers, and indeed it is debatable if Horea was even that) and Gafencu who was an active member and would have almost certainly taken part in violence. Radu Gyr too was an active member (a leader of one of its death squads. The idea that Gyr did not have blood on his hands is nonsense.

      4. Cioran and to a certain extent Eliade spent much of their later lives regretting their sympathy for the legion. Noica too. Nae Ionescu never did. He was an extreme fascist (see his introduction to Sebastian’s De doua mii de ani). As such I think that you will find that Ionescu remains very much persona non grata in any Romanian intellectual circle today. Also worth pointing out that there were plenty of great Romanian intellectuals and artists who were not legionnaires.

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      1. “Why do you claim that Florian is a ‘chauvinist Jew’? I have met him: he is not. As for his parentage, is Romania now North Korea, where the sins of the fathers are also those of the sons?”
        Here I stop. Please post my comments, it’s been blood seat and tears, and adios. Live and let live, they say.

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      2. I am revisiting your comment.

        1. 16+9=25% big, small?

        The fact that women didn’t vote is inconsequential. You don’t have any evidence that the popularity of the Guard was higher among women. My guess is that things were to the contrary. And you claim that me is the irrational one… You definitely have a “problem” with Romanians, to use your words.

        It also goes without saying that the people who voted for the Guard and other far-right parties were not necessarily anti-Semites. Often the vote for such parties is a protest vote against the mainstream parties.

        But you don’t want to think anything favourable about Romanians, isn’t it? You must be bothered that the figure was not higher…

        2. About Vintila Horia (BTW, you’ve misspelled Vulcanescu’s name sounding like women’s genitals. Was it intentionally? It is not unthinkable now.)

        From Wikipedia:

        “In 1946, in the Romanian counterpart to the Nuremberg trials, Horia was sentenced to life in prison for facilitating the penetration of fascist ideas in Romania, and for making the case for those ideas to be implemented under the leadership of the German embassy in Bucharest. The sentence against him has never been rescinded.[5]”

        Florian agues that because the sentenced given by the communist regime court is still abiding Vintila Horia is a kind of war criminal and that certain laws, some from the communist periods bar “the cult” of such people.

        As far as I know Horia didn’t write anything anti-Semitic. Again the Jewish fallacy Fascism = anti-Semitism.

        Florian takes a narrow if absurd legalistic approach when he can. But obviously he is after bigger fishes but his hands are tided by the law. The rest of the work is done by other chauvinistic Jews, it is a team work, “deconstructing”, “exposing”, “educating” on Romanian anti-Semitism, etc., etc.

        3. It is not true that Eliade “repented”. That is in fact what chauvinist Jews reproach him. You are misinformed. So he is Alexandru Florian material… So many schools and streets in Romania porting his name…

        These guys are making order in the Romanian culture, like the political commissars of the past, like their parents more exactly…

        4. “As such I think that you will find that Nae Ionescu remains very much persona non grata in any Romanian intellectual circle today.”
        That is not true. You don’t read Romanian, you don’t know. I regularly go to book fairs and there is always a book by Nae Ionescu in print by decent publishing houses. A thing that you can check for yourself with the internet booksellers.
        5. I will tell you tomorrow my views on Nae Ionescu and his pupil Mihail Sebastian, unless of course, I will be banned…

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      3. PART I
        Thanks. I take it as a compliment. As a quid pro quo I promise to trash some of your other articles (if it is the case).

        (I like to troll other people’s blogs and I don’t have one of my own mainly because I am a lazy chap and because I don’t want my identity revealed, not that it interests anybody, a certain Emil C. BTW, like a certain French gentilhomme it took me more than … years to realise that I am in fact a troll. The wonders of the internet…)

        Now the promised continuation – The Devil and his Apprentice: Nae Ionescu and Mihail Sebastian.

        Things are simple and I hope I won’t make it too long and complicated.

        Firstly, let me state my credentials on the subject. I am merely a guy who has read Sebastian’s ” For Two Thousand Years” + “How I Became a Hooligan” (with Ionescu’s preface), the “Journal”, seen or listen to his plays (I will provide links below to Romanian film adaptations after his plays). I’ve also read (browsed rather) Ionescu’s philosophy courses, a collection of his newspaper articles, and the (in)famous preface. The books were published in the 90s by Humanitas and being in addition a perverse bibliomaniac, gulp… (Bibliomaniacs do not read their books, true, so it must have been something in addition to that too…) Ah, I forgot, and the Wikipedia articles on them…
        As I understand your opinion of Nae Ionescu is something of the sort: “a fascist brute, a derailed anti-Semite, a ranting producer of hogwash, an inciter to hatred, etc.”
        Now that we pass compliments I put it on your misinformation, or on the fact that you had better things to do than read the above tomes (youth…).
        Ionescu in reality was a complex character. Firstly, he had that Mephistophelian look that gave him the moniker “the devil” (it is alleged that he is represented as the devil in a fresco in the Patriarchal Cathedral). And looks, let’s admit it, is your destiny.
        Secondly, he seemed to be the effortless scholar (he didn’t publish any book), dressed like a dandy, rich (nobody understood how), of interest to intelligent and rich women (he was the lover of the Enescu’s wife and of the pianist Cella Delavrancea – concurrently, in turn, I don’t know, good to him). Obviously, he was a seductive role model to the budding intellectuals that attended his courses. He was the equivalent of today’s TV intellectuals without oeuvre.
        However, his lectures in philosophy (broadly) were not the boring type given by a conventional academic. They were colloquial, improvised (so what is in print is merely a snapshot) and more importantly, infused with a strong spirit, with the spirit of an original mind. He was not some wishy-washy. This guy really cared about certain things and was tormented by some ideas. So even though he was supposed to teach philosophy he in fact taught his own philosophy. He was not an impostor, for sure.
        Let me digress a bit about the famous Romanian generation of philosophers: Noica, Eliade, the centenarian Mihai Sora, and with your permission Cioran, and others. Not all of them were his students, not all of them formed a special relationship with him (for instance Noica, Sora), not all of them were far-right (Sora fought for the French resistance). But all of them are not philosophers in the academic sense of the word. Thinkers is a better word, and they are read by people who look for an answer to life’s meaning, to confirming their own thoughts on life and other philosophical subjects, for motivation, or consolation maybe. Ionescu’s lectures too were a pretext for a broader philosophy of life. In a sense all these philosophers, even abstruse Sora, are followers of Ionescu. Mystics, is another good analogy. They are mystical thinkers.

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      4. PART II
        Now let’s come to Ionescu’s fascism and “anti-Semitism”.
        Firstly, there is no trace of overt fascist propaganda or anti-Semitism/anti-Judaism in his university lectures. Those can be found only in his journalism.
        Secondly, he wrote extremely many articles both in his newspaper, “Cuvantul” and in other publications over many years (so, he was not so lazy after all). So, it is easy to publish several books with his journalism skipping everything that is too strong or offensive.
        The above I hope answers your possible puzzlement at my contention that he is in print and popular with the publishers. There is plenty you can publish of him without causing any scandal (with the Florians 😉
        Obviously, he is a conservative thinker, an anti-modernist, a nationalist, an orthodoxist (my term), anti-West. He didn’t advocate for fascism from the very beginning. Remember that Fascism had been around since at least 1920. But after 1930 he becomes an overt adherent to fascism and the Iron Guard.
        Was he an anti-Semite too? IMHO, no.

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      5. PART III

        To argue that he was not an anti-Semite would be more difficult I admit. But let’s try.

        Firstly, the only thing “anti-Semitic” written by him that I have read is that preface to Sebastian’s ” For Two Thousand Years”. Probably, he wrote stronger stuff which I don’t know, as I said I haven’t read all his writings. But it seems that his reputation of an “anti-Semite” hinges strongly on that single text.

        Better translate for you some excerpts and judge for yourself:

        “Judah suffers. Why?

        Because Judah lives in the midst of nations it cannot avoid hating even if it wouldn’t;

        Because since it has refused to recognize Christ the Messiah, clenching further – rightly or wrongly – to the status of the chosen people, it owes it to itself to fulfil its assigned function , that of the solvent of the Christian values.

        Judah suffers because it gave birth to Christ , saw Him and did not believe in Him. That alone still wouldn’t have been too serious. But others did believe in Him – us.

        Judah suffers- because it’s Judah (Judas).”

        (Oh, I got tired…)

        You can find the text in Romanian at

        “https://deveghepatriei.wordpress.com/2011/05/17/nae-ionescu-de-ce-sufera-iuda-prefata-la-cartea-%E2%80%9Ede-doua-mii-de-ani%E2%80%9D-de-mihail-sebastian/

        that you can Google translate and get an idea of it, the last paragraphs sound even worse.
        Hogwash? Anti-Semitic? Definitely he uses a strong language. The figure of speech of calling Jews Judah (which in Romanian is the same with Judas) is called synecdoche. Like calling Germans Fritz. Obviously it is written in a colloquial style, his style. But if you translate this strong wording in neutral language one gets a text that sounds though still controversial, decent and pertinent.
        Let’s summarise some of the ideas of the text (the argument is complicated though):
        – Jews always and everywhere found themselves at times in conflict with the host nations
        – Therefore it is reasonable to assume that they are ones to be blamed for that fact
        -That situation comes from the consequences of their status of “chosen people” that implies a separate living from the host nations
        – That separateness cause a reaction of hatred in the host nations
        – Jews in turn act as subversive elements and critiques of the cultures of the host nations which further turns them against the Jews
        Until now we have the analysis of a sociologist and quite a banal one. It is a positive (descriptive) analysis. There is a middle where he considers Zionism as the solution to “Judah’s suffering”. He admits that Zionism is indeed a solution but that he doesn’t believe that Jews are serious about it or that he believes that Jews will outlive the Jewish state, therefore back to square one.
        The ending is normative (how he thinks it is right to be). And it is an intolerant Christian perspective.
        – Jews can avoid the “suffering” by converting to Christianity (accepting the real Messiah)
        -They won’t do it therefore they will continue to “suffer” (It is not clear why he believes they collectively won’t do it – realism? because Judah=Judas?… )
        There are other concurrent ideas: his opinion on what makes a nation, who is a (real) “Romanian”, an advice to Sebastian to be a Jew (that is why he calls him by his Jewish name of Josef Hechter) and stop fooling himself that he is something else (a Romanian), and much more, but I think those are the main ones.
        (To be continued if I won’t get bored, too much trouble with these Christians, Jews, f-word them…)

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      6. PART IV

        Let me continue and eventually finish.

        I will come now to Sebastian.

        Sebastian believed that it is the eternal “destiny” of Jews to have a tragic history and be persecuted. He didn’t give explanations why. He believed that the reasons to anti-Semitism are “metaphysical”. He was as irrational as Ionescu.

        Here is an excerpt from “How I Became a Hooligan” (1934) (“Hooligan” means fascist in the jargon of the times):

        “Jews are a tragic people.

        Why? I don’t know. Maybe for the same reason why the Swiss are a placid people. It is a matter of destiny, of vocation, of intimate necessity. It is, more so, a reality beyond explanations”

        “What makes Jewish mystery plays tragic? The portrayal of anti-Semitism? But there’s no mention of it there. What makes Anski’s drama ‘Dibuk’ tragic? It is a drama among Jews only with no input from the outside. It is not about pogroms, about numerus clausus, about the gentlemen Cuza and Codreanu – it is nevertheless a harrowing Jewish tragedy, burning in its own flames.

        Have you ever pondered that the most intense moments of their drama, the people of Israel suffered under the Prophets? As far as I know Hitlerism did not exist then.

        And I believe that some day in the, not so distant, future it will cease to exist again. But “Judah” will go on suffering. Who wants to laugh at this fact has all the freedom to do it. Who can laugh is in addition a happy man.”

        Sebastian was also a chauvinist Jew (IMHO). In the autobiographical roman a clef “For Two Thousand Years” (1934) there is the dialog between the narrator (Sebastian) and Mircea Vieru (Mircea Eliade):
        “MV: Am I surprising you?
        S: No. You just sadden me. You see, I know two types of anti-Semites, the pure and simple type and the with arguments type. With the former I can have a commerce because everything between me and them is crystal clear. With the latter it is hard.
        Why, because it is hard to answer them?
        No. Because it is useless to answer them. You see, my dear maître, your mistake in reasoning starts precisely where your arguments start. To be an anti-Semite is a fact. To be an anti-Semite with arguments is an waste of time and a self-deceit. Because neither your anti-Semitism nor Romanian anti-Semitism need arguments. ”
        “S: Not only that I find anti-Semitism perfectly explainable, but I consider Jews the only to blame for it. I would like you to ponder that the essence of anti-Semitism is neither of religious, political or economic nature. I think that it is pure and simple of metaphysical essence. Don’t be scared. There is a metaphysical duty for Jews to be despised. That is their role in the world. Why? I don’t know. Their curse, Their destiny. Their business, if you will.”
        You see the same ideas as Ionescu’s but uttered by a Jew and with a positive affect. Oh, the irony…
        (To be continued)

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      7. PART V
        I hope that you agree that Sebastian was also a major producer of hogwash. But he was a Jew, he cannot be accused of “anti-Semitism”. He is OK. Everybody is equal but some people are more equal than others…
        To try to make it short let me tell you what I think about the relationship between Ionescu and Sebastian. Sebastian, a student of Ionescu became one of pupils, protégés. The relationship was asymmetrical. For Ionescu Sebastian was one of his followers maybe not the best loved while Sebastian formed an intense obsession with Ionescu. That intense relationship is described in the novel “For 2K years” where Ionescu is Prof. Ghita Blidaru.
        I think their morbid relationship was a psychological game they played with each other like in Eric Berne’s Game People Play . Ionescu hoped to make Sebastian convert to Orthodoxy (You’ve seen that he believed that the only salvation for Jews is to become Christians).
        Sebastian on the other hand hoped to make Ionescu acknowledge that anti-Semitism is wrong because “look there are Jews like him too. Not all Jews are ‘bad'”.
        In this silly game Ionescu was the smarter because Sebastian chances to change Ionescu were nil. However, after “For 2k years” it became clear to Ionescu that Sebastian had absolutely no intention to convert to Christianity. The book is precisely about Sebastian journey to his full acceptance of his Jewish identity even though he was not a practicing Jew from a religious point. It was like a punch in the face of Ionescu.
        Therefor Ionescu was angry, and that may explain the strong language of the preface. My analysis explains also why Sebastian published the preface because nothing forced him to do so. He was playing the game “now, I got you bastard”, from “Games People Play”.
        (To be continued)

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      8. PART VI
        I got tired and I will make a bungle at the end. Remember that I have to “prove” that Ionescu was not an “anti-Semite”.

        For this I need to ask what “an anti-Semite”, “anti-Semitism” and “anti-Semitic” mean. The dictionary definition won’t do.

        Collins English Dictionary:

        anti-Semite noun

        a person who persecutes or discriminates against Jews

        *anti-Se*mitic adjective

        *anti-Se*mitically adverb

        *anti-*Semitism noun

        Like all abstract nouns is open to philosophical interpretation.

        And even if we agree on a definition how we go about and make it operational. Should we try to discover a blood test or devise a psychological test? Should the law punish being “an anti-Semite”? And who should prove that somebody is or not such a thing, the accuser (prosecutor) or the accused? And should the accused be allowed to contest the accusation? Rhetorical questions.

        What about “anti-Semitism (Judeophobia)”. Is it a mental disturbance? A political doctrine? A racial theory? A visceral dislike of Jew? Or merely a reaction to “Semitism”?

        Is Judeophobia in relation to Jews theme same as for instance Mexicanophobia, Sinophobia, Germanophobia and Romanophobia in relation to the Mexicans, Chinese, Germans and Romanians repectively. And if yes, is Trump a Mexicano- and Sino-phobe? Were the British press and public Germanophobes during WWI when Germans were portrayed as “the Hun” with cartoons as if taken from the infamous Der Sturmer only with the caption changed? Are now the tabloid press in Britain and Little Englanders like Nigel Farage Romanophobes?

        “Anti-Semitic” is not an easier term either. In 2014 The Economist published a cartoon that Jews considered “anti-Semitic”. This is a common occurrence with cartoons on the Israelo-Palestinian conflict published by the left-wing press. Similarly, Mearsheimer and Walt’s “The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy” was considered… “anti-Semitic”, bingo.
        I am not saying that the terms are meaningless. I am saying only that they are problematic and open to discussion, and in addition used too generously by Jews.
        BTW, they have a saying: “scratch a goy and you’ll find an anti-Semite”…

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      9. PART VII

        To conclude, (yes, now is for real…), I will give you a list of questions to pass to Mr. Alexandru Florian when you see him again. Tell him that the question were posed to a clueless teacher of the course “The Holocaust in Romania” by primary school pupils.

        1. Who (what) is a Jew?

        2. What definition the Nazis gave to “a Jew”? What definition the Romanian Jewish Community gives to being a Jew? Could I ask to be admitted? What definition the state of Israel gives to being a Jew in order to be accepted for repatriation (aliyah)? Are those definitions the same? Why was the Nazi definition wrong if at all?

        3. What was the definition of a Jew of the Iron Guard, Carol II with his anti-Semitic laws, and Antonescu regime? The same with Hitler’s, different? Was it based on racist principles or on religion? Was a Jewish convert to Orthodoxy spared from discrimination and persecution, or not?

        4. Did the Nazis ban the practicing of Judaism in their Reich (was Judaism banned)? And if not who attended the Synagogue service? When the Germans reached Crimea they discovered the community of Crimea Karaites. They concluded that they were not racially Jews even though they were religiously Jews.

        5. How the Nazis went about the business of classifying their citizens into Jews vs. Aryans? Did they ask all citizens to “prove” that they were not Jews? In which case it is fair to assume that many genuine Aryans couldn’t do it. So did in the Holocaust died many Aryans mistaken for Jews?! Or did the SS people try to find who was a Jew or not? In which case it is fair to assume that many Jews (whatever the definition) passed as Aryans.

        6. Could the people classified as Jews contest the decision in court? How long such a legal recourse could have taken? The Nuremberg Laws were issued in 1935. The Holocaust starts in 1941. 6 years. Probably too much.

        7. We are told that the Nazis killed also Jews in occupied territories: Poland, USSR, France, etc. Did they use the same criteria? The occupation of Poland the earliest country conquered, starts in 1940 (for all practical purposes). 1940-1941= 1 year. Probably to short. So were the Polish Jews still contesting their classification as Jews in court while the Holocaust happened? How was the Holocaust possible then?

        8. What about Germans of mixed Jewish/German ancestry (the Mischlinge)?
        Do Jews consider them Jews or Aryans? If Jews consider the Mischlinge Jews it means that the Nazis didn’t try to “kill all Jews”, isn’t it? Were the Mischlinge allowed to practice Judaism (see question 4)?

        9. The Nazis allowed exceptions to their laws and principles and granted certain Jewish individuals the status of “Honorary Aryan” for great services rendered to the Third Reich. How was that possible considering the standard view of Nazis as mad fanatics and was it possible for more Jews to save themselves by “rendering great services to the Reich”, their motherland in fact?
        10. According to the Nazi racial theories were the Romanian ethnicity considered Aryan, that is on par with the Germans or inferior like the Jews and Roma people? We are told that the Nazis exterminated the Jews because they considered them an inferior race. If the Nazis considered Romanians too an inferior people why didn’t they exterminate the Romanians and grab their resource rich country?
        11. The Jews that the Nazis killed were either German citizens or foreign citizens. The killing of German Jews should have been punished by the German justice after the war as it has been done till this day. It is an internal matter to Germany. The killing of foreign Jews should have been punished at the Nuremberg Trial by the winning nations whose citizens those Jews were. This was also done. Nevertheless it was felt the need to introduce the legal concept of the “genocide” in order to punish the perpetrators of the Holocaust? Why? After all Jews are merely citizens of Mosaic faith…
        (to be continued)

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      10. PART VII
        12. There is this fashion of certain governments formally apologising in the name of their countries for their role in the Holocaust. Romania did it in 2007. To whom these apologies are addressed? To the local Jewish community? To Israel? To the USA, the other country of the Jews? To Russia and Ukraine, where the Romanian army killed Jews? To the World Jewry?
        13. Why the above apologies are addressed only to Jews and not more generally to all victims of the totalitarian regimes (Fascism and Communism) regardless of ethnic and religious background?
        14. The statements “the Romanians rule the world” and “the Jews rule the world” are both inept and hilarious. However, when you utter the former people laugh including Romanians themselves. When you utter the latter people are serious. Why? Why this difference?
        Uh. Basta. Finito. Thanks and bye.

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  6. The points should be added below:

    Was Radu Gyr so “bad”? I’ve just read his Wikipedia article and he seems to me more of a fool and victim of times. There it is mentioned that he did something good for the Jewish culture of Romania. Did he write anything anti-Semitic, I don’t know? Maybe he joined the Iron Guard because he liked fascism and not because he was an anti-Semite. Not all fascists were anti-Semites. But for you this is hair splitting…

    “Oana Stanciulescu – has in the past written articles praising Legionaries killed in Spain fighting for Franco, as well as Nae Ionescu – one of the Legion’s leading theorists”

    Praising Nae Ionescu shouldn’t be a crime, see below. His works (lectures) were reedited by the prestigious publishing house Humanitas in the early ’90s.

    “In parliament yesterday – when Stanciulescu’s appointment was debated and approved – one MP, Cristina Anghel, praised the Legion,”
    I doubt that this is the correct interpretation. They probably said something favourably about it but not “praise it”. You see, words have proper usage and connotations. I am sure they will think of me also as “praising” the Iron Guard and an “abject anti-Semite”… Fortunately for them I am only a “troll”, but an annoying one….

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    1. Of course Radu Gyr was ‘so bad.’ He was an active member of the legion, leader of a death squad. Doesn’t matter how good his bloody poetry was. As for the ‘did something good for the Jewish culture of Romania’ you are probably referring to the myth of his creation of the Jewish Theatre. Alas, (i) it wasn’t Gyr who created it and (ii) it was only created after Jews had been banned from performing in all other theatres in Romania.

      ‘Saying something favourable’ about the legion is the same as praising it. There is nothing favourable to say about the movement: its ideology was evil.

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      1. You seem to be an expert on Radu Gyr… Why the Wikipedia (I am sure edited by the Alexandru Florian people) does not mention “death squads”? What about banning all communist writers like Alexandru Florian father and like Alexandru Florian himself. Did you ask what Alexandru Florian wrote before ’89. He is not so young and he did not come from nowhere…
        Or maybe communism, where the Alexandru Florian folks were legion is a lesser evil for you…

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      2. I can only assume that the Wikipedia article was written by a sympathiser. You really ought to learn not to use it as an authority on anything. Try some proper books, there are plenty on the subject. Start with Radu Ioanid, or simply read the full Wiesel Commission Report.

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      3. 1. From Wikipedia:

        “His sentence was commuted to life imprisonment, but he served only six years, two of which with chains at his feet. Although severely ill (hepatitis, TBC, haemophilia, gangrened rectal prolapse), he was refused any medical assistance, was starved and tortured. Altogether he served 16 years in communist prisons (1945-1956; 1958-1964). In 1963-1964 all the surviving political prisoners had to be released, upon pressure from the West.”

        I think that he paid apply for any sin (be it real or imagined)… Poor chap! Or maybe you wanted him skinned alive like supposedly the Jews murdered in the abattoir massacre… (See Paul Wood’s comment. Is he a “Holocaust denier” too?… Or maybe a neo-legionnaire?…)

        2. However, please check on these people and tell me whether you aren’t mad that they escaped justice:

        Julia Brystiger

        Salomon Morel

        Alexandru Nicolschi

        and many many others whose names I don’t know because you can find them only on the Internet, this haven of free speech, and NOT IN BOOKS.

        3. Radu Ioanid is just another chauvinist Jew. Let me explain what I mean by “chauvinist”. Simply, an (ultra-)nationalist, a jingo, a hawk, a “my country (tribe) right or wrong” type, a tribalist, a suprematist, a person who likes to offend foreigners.

        Churchill was one. Thatcher was one. Trump is one. Hitler, De Gaulle, former Chief Rabbi of Israel Ovadia Yosef who said:
        “Why are Gentiles needed? They will work, they will plow, they will reap. We will sit like an effendi and eat. That is why Gentiles were created.”[67]
        were chauvinists. Now you got it? That fact that you seeped coffee with Mr. Florian doesn’t mean that he is not one! A chauvinist is not necessarily a thug, a football hooligan type. And what reasons would Florian have to be rude or violent to you?… (BTW, in what capacity did you meet him? I hope though that he at least paid for your coffee otherwise you are on the voluntary work territory…)
        4. Radu Ioanid is a Jew born in Romania. A Romanian Jew if you like. I know that he lives now in the USA. As Melanie Philips is a British Jew. When I say that he is not Romanian I am not referring to his nationality, his proficiency in Romanian and neither to his genes, though obviously Jews and Romanians are different ethnicities. I am referring to his political affiliation to a nation or another. If he considers that his people/tribe are the Jews worldwide and not the Romanians than he is not Romanian in my acceptation. In a similar fashion may Israelis do not consider as good/faithful citizens many Arab Israelis and that is why in the West today many people do not consider Muslims good citizens. It is not enough to be a citizen or speak the language to “belong to a nation”. I assure you that most people on this planet including Jews agree with my banal musings.
        Therefore, I am not saying that Radu Ioanid presents falsities in his books (though I am open to this possibility, see Paul Wood’s comment). But being a chauvinist Jew he filtrates the facts so to present Jews in a favourable light and Romanian (the antagonists) in a bad light.
        Similarly, If you see a book on the history of Romania with an author with a Hungarian name you would naturally think that it is a history from a Hungarian perspective while a Romanian author most probably would give a favourable account on contentious issues. Most foreigners would think that the truth is somewhere in the middle.
        But these things are banal thoughts for any person of moderate intelligence. People are not stupid!

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  7. No, the nuclear option is a no-go area because a tiny little nation thought about it long ago, see the Samson option…
    While it is true that (((they))) liken Trump to Hitler, the problem is that if Trump is indeed a new Hitler he must be (((THEIR))) Hitler not ours… He is their lap dog, mate!
    No, the White race is doomed. A loser in the grand struggle for survival. All that we are left to do is to annoy (((them))) with our comments (“comment is free”) SO much that they blow their brains out!
    (There is another option, of course. To join them as their lackeys: if you can’t fight them join them. A thing that this guy seems to have done. But, no I am still holding out… For a while… I am dead broke… :-

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  8. When it will be the time to “do your thing” please start with him.

    He doesn’t publish on his Jewish Bucharest page my comment:

    “In addition in 1920 an improvised explosive device placed by a left-wing terrorist group comprised of Max Goldstein, Leon Lichtblau and Saul Ozias, blows up in the Romanian Senate, killing the Minister of Justice and two other senators. Likewise, President of the Senate and two Orthodox bishops are severely injured.”
    All sort of imbecile comments are published on that page but that significant moment of Romanian-Jewish relations is censored. Definitely he is afraid to displease his masters. A Shabbos goy full of turpitude!

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