This Christmas

In his second January New English Review essay, our nostalgic doctor thinks back to his visit to Romania toward the end of the vicious, communist regime of Comrade Ceausescu in 1989.

There is still some discussion as to whether his overthrow was a revolution or a coup d’état. Actually, the two theories are not completely incompatible: even if the outbreak of protest in Romania was planned by prominent members of the regime at a time when communism was crumbling elsewhere, hoping thereby to preserve the regime’s fundamental nature and thus the privileges of its nomenklatura, the coup, if that is what it is, ushered in changes that proved revolutionary in effect and scope.

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