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Bucharest
December 3, 2021
EDITORIAL

The politicians are innocent until… they show us the finger

Elena Udrea, under intense pressure by the arrest requests of Anti-Corruption prosecutors, strongly insisted that she was innocent whenever she had the opportunity, claiming that she was nothing but a simple defenseless prey of a Goliath-sized system which only wishes to reduce her to silence. She was an innocent victim until… she showed us, the entire country, the finger. And she did not do it once, she did it twice. Once in the plenum of the Parliament, after she held a speech meant to awaken her colleagues’ conscience, and the second time on her way to the cell, with the bracelets of law around her wrists. Her obviously deliberate gesture, to put her index finger on her nostril and tentatively look at the cameras while doing it said more than a thousand words. But these were not the words that should be interpreted according to the Mafia codes, as rumoured these days over and over, but the words that instantly appeared on the lips of all Romanians looking at her: “She is obviously guilty!” Her gesture annihilated even the most deeply rooted doubts of people torn between the satisfaction that “finally, justice is being done in this country” and the doubt that “perhaps she is not as evil as they say”. What honest person would do such a gesture, that seems taken from movies about Al Capone? This sinless Snow White screaming her innocence in front of the entire nations proved to be a genuine witch who attempted without hesitation to fool us in order to get away from prison.

And if what Udrea had done reignited the disgust to politics in the heart of Romanians,  the ridiculous performance by Senator Varujan Vosganian increased this disgust ten times. “I beg of you…”, “I pray to you…”, “Pretty please…”, “I swear”, “Let us swear on the Holy Cross”, Vosganian approached his colleagues from the stand, a day before the ballot in the Parliament destined to decide the removal of immunity due to leave him alone and free of his protective armour in front of judges. Then, in the plenum, after prayers, crying, dozens of begging pleas, swearing on crosses and short of spreading holy unction all over himself, the remarkable writer who dropped his dignity with an ease and a hurry that would rather define the staff of a brothel sat down relaxed and gave a smile of complicity, proud of his role.

And these are not the only cases of Romanian politicians who, with Damocles’ sword hanging above their heads in the form of criminal files, proved themselves Hollywood-worthy actors in playing the role of martyrs. UNPR Deputy Titi Holban, accused by DNA Prosecutors of having received a bribe of EUR 10,000 in return for promising a business owner that he would persuade an anti-fraud inspector not to fine him, piously preached in front of his colleagues in front of the Chamber of Deputies: “My dear colleagues, I pray to you from the bottom of my heart to analyse this situation from a human point of view and even from a godly point of view, as Our Lord Jesus Christ says when advising us: “When you judge your fellow human, put yourself in his position and judge as if you were in that situation.” Thank you! May God help us”. His speech helped him preserve his immunity.

Social-Democrat Ion Stan also recited prayers in front of hundreds of eyes: “Holy Virgin Mary, Mother of our Saviour, guard us from all anger, danger, need and trouble”. He was suspected of having demanded a businessman “two million, oil money” for each of the 600 automobiles he intended to use in the electoral campaign. Colleagues felt compassion and did not cease his immunity.

Deputy Florin Popescu, from PDL, accused of having demanded a bribe of several tons of chicken meat in order to purchase votes, prayed and got away, too. It was intense. “We have an old Christian tradition. I asked for God’s help and God helped me”, he declared, obviously relieved.

Faced with severe accusations, such is influence peddling and instigation to forgery, Social-Democrat Senator Marius Isaila held a speech that brought him his colleagues’ pity. Unlike the rest of them, he did not invoke divinity, but placed his mother’s portrait on his shield defending him from the law. “I want to thank my mother, who is now on her deathbed, that she did such a nice job raising me; I am proud of being a Senator of Romania”, he declared. His speech was no failure either.

All of these real facts and words, that seem quoted from a ridiculous script that would be more suitable for fiction, turn us, the small ones, into powerless witnesses as defence is divided according to interests. No matter how much the President of Romania and international organisms insist that the mechanism of justice would run smoothly in Romania, as long as the shield named immunity exists, the only thing we may do is witness the mockery to the law exhibited by Senators and Deputies while helping each other get away and we, whether we are amused or revolted, are nothing but helpless viewers of a humiliating, embarrasing, never ending show, featuring politicians whom we granted immunity as they show us the finger and laugh.

 

 

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