Libmonster ID: MD-895
Author(s) of the publication: A. A. YAZKOVA

Publishing house "Kartya Moldovenyaskaia". Chisinau. 1969. 191 pages. The print run is 3000 copies. Price 25 kopecks.

This small but very informative book, which is part of the series "Moldova Yesterday and Today", was prepared by a team of Moldovan historians. Their reference to the history of Sfatul Center's creation and operation is not accidental. This body (the" Council of the Country") has played an ominous role in the history of the Moldovan people. Its bourgeois-nationalist elite made considerable efforts to eliminate the revolutionary gains of the working people on the territory of Bessarabia and prepare the conditions for its capture by bourgeois-landowner Romania. The appearance of this work fills a significant gap in Soviet historiography, since until now the problems associated with the counterrevolutionary activities of the Moldovan bourgeoisie and landlords have not been the subject of special coverage.

The authors correctly identify the main milestones in the history of the bourgeois-nationalist movement on the territory of Bessarabia, and show how, after the victory of the Great October Revolution, the activities of Moldovan bourgeois nationalists became an integral part of the counter-revolution and intervention against Soviet Russia. The book emphasizes that the Sfatul Cerium, which they used to create the appearance of" sanctioning " their anti-people plans by the population, was created in October 1917, that is, just when the wave of the revolutionary movement of the working people of Moldavia began to directly threaten the very existence of the bourgeois-landowner system (pp. 63-64). The facts analyzed in this paper show the methods of fraud and falsification used by the top of the counter-revolutionary bourgeoisie in the formation of this body.

The content of the book shows that studying the activities of Sfatul Ceri is useful not only from the point of view of analyzing the alignment of class forces in Moldova after the victory of the Great October Socialist Revolution, but also in terms of a more in - depth study of the history of international relations in the post-October period, primarily relations between the young Soviet republic and bourgeois-landowner Romania. Already at the beginning of December 1917, Royal Romania became one of the hotbeds of an international conspiracy against the Country of the Soviets. The paper deals with such issues as the preparation of the intervention of Royal Romania in Bessarabia and the contacts of the Romanian rulers with the most reactionary forces of international imperialism. The authors cite new materials, including archival ones, about the complicity of the leaders of Sfatul Tsariy

page 152

royal Romania. Immediately after the victory of the October Revolution, its representatives often sent "special" assignments to Iasi, where the Romanian government was staying and the French military mission was located at that time. The purpose of these trips, according to one of their participants, was to obtain weapons and ammunition from the Romanian government ,which " could be used at a certain moment by Bessarabian patriots (that is, counter-revolutionaries. - A. Ya .) to protect themselves from their own Bessarabian troops" (p. 143). In mid-December, the book says, the leaders of the Sfatul Tsarii, mostly representatives of the ruling classes - the landlords and the bourgeoisie, appealed to the royal government with a request to send Romanian troops to Bessarabia (pp. 146-147). It is no coincidence, therefore, that it was at the beginning of January 1918 that the intervention of the Romanian royal troops began. According to the plans of its initiators, the united forces of internal and external counter-revolution, this action was aimed at stifling the gains of the socialist revolution in Bessarabia. The authors convincingly show that the leaders of Sfatul Tsarii carried out not only a treacherous, but also a double-dealing policy: suppressing the revolutionary gains of the people in blood, they at the same time covered their actions with speeches on their behalf. Even in Sfatul Center itself, the authors note, such actions caused dissatisfaction. Many of its members, deceived at first by the democratic signboard of this body, when they saw the light, opposed the reactionary course of its leaders and for this they were deprived of their deputy rank. In December 1917, as a result of "purges", 40% of its members were expelled from the Sfatul Center. In their place, people who were pleasing to the bourgeois nationalists were co-opted: However, the treacherous actions became so obvious that even members of the Sfatul Center's executive body - the Board of Directors - protested, and some of them left its membership (p.160).

The book recreates the picture of the persistent resistance of the workers of Bessarabia to the interventionist troops, and provides many examples that show that the struggle against the invaders has reached the widest segments of the population. The authors describe the decisive measures taken by the Soviet government to help the Moldovan people and protect the territorial integrity of the Soviet state. However, the paper does not pay enough attention to the struggle of the revolutionary forces in Romania itself against the intervention of the royal troops in Bessarabia. Meanwhile, it is well known that V. I. Lenin and the Soviet Government drew a clear line between the reactionary policy of the ruling circles of royal Romania and the will of the Romanian people. This internationalist position found a wide response among the Romanian revolutionaries. On December 28, 1917, Pravda published a resolution of protest by a group of left Social Democrats in Romania against the intervention. They maintained the same position in the future.

The authors describe in detail the treacherous role played in the spring and autumn of 1918 by the counter-revolutionary "Sfatul tsarii". The representatives of the reaction that dominated it became more active after the introduction of Romanian troops into Bessarabia. In March 1918, at the initiative of the Board of Directors, a handful of local large landowners appealed to the Romanian government to immediately annex Bessarabia to Romania. There is no doubt about the class meaning of this appeal and the real role of the reactionary leadership of the Sfatul Tsarii in its organization, especially since in April 1918, as the facts analyzed in the book show, the majority of ordinary deputies of the Sfatul Tsarii refused to vote for "annexation" (p. 175). The authors introduce previously unknown materials into scientific circulation, acquaintance with which proves that the annexation of Bessarabia in April, and then its incorporation into royal Romania in December 1918, were carried out by force, with the complicity of reactionaries from Sfatul Tsarii.

The further fate of this organ, traced in the book, is remarkable. Sfatul Tsarii was immediately disbanded by royal decree. The deputies who voted for joining Romania received a corresponding bribe: all of them were allocated 50 dessiatines of land. Some of its leaders - I. Inkulec, P. Khalippa-became reactionary politicians of royal Romania, while others, like G. Pintea, later turned out to be among the war criminals.

The book would greatly benefit if the authors elaborated on the international aspects of the annexation of Bessarabia. They repeatedly mention that both the Entente Powers and the countries of the Triple Soyu-

page 153

They encouraged the capture of Bessarabia by Royal Rumania. However, it would be appropriate to add that in the future the forces of imperialism had to reckon with the growing international prestige of the Soviet Republic. The Convention on the recognition of the occupation of Bessarabia, signed by the Entente States in October 1920, was never ratified by all its participants and therefore did not enter into force.

The book concludes with an account of the hard struggle waged by the workers of occupied Bessarabia for reunification with the Soviet Homeland for two decades. The liberation of the region in June 1940 led to the restoration of Soviet power here and the formation of the Moldavian SSR. Thus, the betrayal committed by the bourgeois-landlord reaction could not change the historical fate of the Moldovan people, who stubbornly fought against the occupation regime and won in this struggle.


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A. A. YAZKOVA, Historical science in the USSR. Reviews: D. I. ANTONYUK, S. Ya. AFTENYUK, A. S. ESAULENKO, M. B. ITKIS. THE TREACHEROUS ROLE OF SFATUL TSARII // Chisinau: Library of Moldova (LIBRARY.MD). Updated: 11.06.2024. URL: (date of access: 17.07.2024).

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