Corneliu Coposu’s political will, publicly presented 23 years after his death: Politics can’t be accepted as a means to promote personal interests

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Corneliu Coposu’s political will was publicly presented on Sunday, 23 years after the senior politician’s death. The document was found in the archives of the Corneliu Coposu Foundation.

The will has three parts: the first contains private testamentary data, the second contains the list of qualities that a “veritable” politician needs, and the third is built as a code of political ethics.

The political will of late Christian Democratic National Peasants’ Party (PNTCD) leader Corneliu Coposu encourages the young generation to get involved in defending the values of democracy and not to give in to pressures of any kind, because only this way would Romania succeed in overcoming the traumas caused by the communist period. Other ideas are the belief in God, in family, and the fact that the restoration of the monarchy would be the only measure that would ensure the salvation of Romania. Patriotism proven through actions, not words, and the power of the personal example, which would educate the young in the spirit of universal values, are also among the principles listed by Coposu.

The will was written on the night of 24-25 July 1994, on the hospital bed. Corneliu Coposu was scheduled to undergo surgery on the morning of July 25, a procedure that, a few hours before, he sensed as the end: “This surgical intervention could be fatal for me.”

In that context, that night, Corneliu Coposu wrote that “in crucial moments that foreshadow inevitable reckonings and the rigor without exception of the laws of nature, people have the habit of outlining intentions or wishes that would survive their disappearance. Having no wealth, I am spared the obligation of allocating assets. (…) My boundless gratitude for my dear parents, who taught me to differentiate between good and evil, to be honest, to hate lie and hypocrisy, to fight honestly for my ideal, to face all hardships for the ideal that I serve.”

One of the senior politician’s private wishes was to be “buried without pomp, without speeches, in the cemetery in Bucharest,” and for the leadership of the National Peasant’s Party to go “under the jurisdiction of Ion Diaconescu.”

“I honestly hope that all political friends would offer their assistance, would support him and would contribute to the consolidation of the Party. Iuliu Maniu and Ion Mihalache’s curse will befall those who, taking advantage of the transition, would attempt, through disloyal means, to capitalise on their ambitions.”

Another wish was for “the old generation to pass the relay to future generations.” In this sense, Coposu noted: “I am sorry I did not end up handling this natural operation. I hope it will be done without convulsions. (…) I put great hope in the future political activity of my young friends, with whose future political career I tried to be preoccupied: Costin Borc, Ionut Muntean, Ionut Gherasim. I foresee a good future for them.”

He encouraged the young generations to consider the turmoil of the past: “It must serve as a lesson. There were many vain persons who left the Party, thinking they would accomplish the deeds they dreamed (Vaida, Stere, Iunian, Lupu, Calinescu). History has swallowed up all of them, but the party has remained. The fate of dissidents and turncoats is sealed. Unfortunately, people do not take into account the experiences of the past.”

Confident in the future of Romanian youth and democracy, Corneliu Coposu wrote on the night of 24 July 1994: “the communist era, imposed on our country after the Second World War, was the biggest catastrophe in Romanian history. (…) This catastrophe of recent decades – communism – has collapsed irredeemably. I believe democratic institutions will be established in Romania. I believe that the restoration of the monarchy is our salvation.”

At the same time, as defender of honest political principles, Corneliu Coposu also wrote in his will: “politics is a moral activity and it cannot be delimited from ethics and honesty. I have always cherished honest and loyal people and I was uneasy when, compelled by circumstances, I was obligated to work with or be around flunkeys and people without character. I detest those who negotiate principles, because I believe it is not permissible to engage in compromises that change the essence of the objectives you are militating for.”

Moreover, 24 years ago, Corneliu Coposu was pointing out what Romanian politicians must be and what they must not be: “politics cannot be accepted as a means to promote personal interests. The services it brings, disinterestedly, must serve the people, the community, the general interests. From a young age, I have known and detested historical and dialectic materialism, the Marxist concepts, the theses of Engels, the feats of Lenin.”

Referring to his political activity, the senior politician declared himself at ease with his “duty” toward the country and with his conscience: “I do not believe I have major guilts to reproach myself for. I have sought to respect my principles, ideological commitment, and all the actions born from love for the Motherland and the Romanian people. If I were to start all over again, I would do the same, even considering the outlook of years in prison, the suffering endured.”

“If I were to be asked, on Judgment Day, about the traces left behind by my lifelong efforts, I would unhesitatingly answer that I deem myself at least co-contributor to the survival of the National Peasants’ Party, during the almost five decades of terror; that I congratulate myself for integrating the Party (with how many risks) in the Christian-Democratic International (1987), at a time of terrible persecution and police surveillance; on the night of the December Revolution, I re-legalised the Party, which was abolished on paper in July 1947 (in reality functioning clandestinely, even in prisons); I reopened, with difficulty, aided by a handful of brave people whom the suffering did not discourage, the path of Maniu and Mihalache, over a chasm of forty-five years full of the bones of the martyrs who faced the terrible Russian-communist high flood; the National Peasants’ Party, with the “Christian-Democrat” definition I added to it, was the first one registered, at the Bucharest Tribunal, in the registry of political parties; through sustained efforts and unweighted exertions, through tiresome travels and repeated overtures, I managed to integrate the Party in the conclave of the respected and respectable political parties of the West, marking a European presence two years before the official attempts to join the continental civilisation; I established links of collaboration with the most important decision-making personalities in the West, and I obtained their appreciation and moral and material support.”

In what concerns those who contributed to the consolidation of communism, Corneliu Coposu noted: “If the trial of communism takes place at some point (I understand by that the trial of those who concretely contributed to the disaster of the country), these lines could serve as an argument in court, in favour of those incriminated. Namely: the humans (or sub-humans) who committed the degrading actions they will be charged with (terror, assassinations, torture, criminal persecutions) must be not punished but hospitalised in mental institutions. On my part, I have forgiven the crimes and sins of all of them, including of those who tortured me by using all the Asiatic methods of physical and moral torture. I have also forgiven those who took part in a condemnable competition of calumny and defamation. They are people with corrupted souls, who can no longer be recovered by the honest society of the future Romania. The atonement of their mercenary actions will one day result in belated remorse.”

At the end of the will, the late leader of the post-communist Romania’s Opposition concludes: “I believe I have done everything humanly in my power to fulfil the will I received from Iuliu Maniu in prison cell no.2 in Malmaison, in October 1947 (“I will not survive. Those of you who escape the communist hell are duty-bound to carry forward the glorious flag of our Party, for the interest of the future Romania!”). With the feeling that I have sought to carry out this vow, even in particularly difficult conditions, I pass it on to the young generation of the Christian Democratic National Peasants’ Party. With faith in God and in the future of the Romanian people, onwards! Corneliu Coposu.”

The will was read in full, at a special event, by Corneliu Coposu Foundation President Ion Gherasim, alongside Costin Borc, Ana Blandiana, Ion Caramitru, Dan Grigore, Doru Maries, Tudor Dunca, in the presence of hundreds of persons who knew and sympathised with the late senior politician, News.ro informs.