Stalinism Revisited: The Establishment of Communist Regimes in East-Central Europe

By Vladimir Tismaneanu | Go to book overview

DORIN DOBRINCU


Histoncizing a Disputed Theme:
Anti-Communist Armed Resistance
in Romania1

The wars waged by small irregular groups against regular military forces or even big armies, of the “classical” type, have been known since Antiquity. But the term “guerrilla war” entered the military vocabulary with the Napoleonic invasion to Spain, at the beginning of the 19th century, when the Spanish irregular forces played an important part in Napoleon's defeat. The term “guerrilla” means “small war” or “irregular war” waged by unprofessional civil-soldiers, who transform into fighters when their country is invaded by a foreign power.2 Therefore, if a war is carried on with regular armies, it is considered to be the “great” (classical) war, while guerrilla warfare is the “small war,” the unconventional one, a “harassing war,” which brings together “functions and practices of fight, where the cunning, the cheating, the surprise and the secret intercross and support each other.”3

1 The title of the paper delivered on 29 November 2007, in Washington, within
the symposium “Stalinism Revisited—The Establishment of Communist Re-
gimes in East-Central Europe and the Dynamics of the Soviet Bloc”, was
“The Anti-Communist Armed Resistance in Romania in Comparative Per-
spective.” Considering the fact that the topic of the anti-communist armed
resistance in Romania is very little known in the English language historiog-
raphy, we though it might be useful to insist more upon the development of
the phenomenon, offering in the final section the so necessary comparative
perspective.

2 Virgil Ney, “Guerrilla Warfare and Modern Strategy,” in Modern Guernlla
Warfare: Fighting Communist Guerrilla Movement, 1941-1961
, Franklin Mark
Osanka ed., introduction by Samuel P. Huntington (New York: The Free
Press of Glencoe, 1963), p. 25.

3 Alain Dewerpe, Spionul: Antropologia secretuluide stat contemporan, transi, from
French by Dan C. Miháilescu (Bucharest: Editura Nemira, 1998), p. 61.

-305-

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