Dictionary of East European History since 1945

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Bibliography

Fischer-Galati Stephen, The New Romania: From People's Democracy to Socialist Republic ( Cambridge, MA, 1967); Gilberg Trond, Nationalism and Communism in Romania: The Rise and Fall of Ceausescu's Personal Dictatorship ( Boulder, CO, 1990).

Draghici, Alexandru (1917-). Draghici was a member of the leadership of the illegal Communist party in Romania during the 1930s, and he spent time in prison with the other leaders after 1936. When Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej (seeGheorghiu-Dej, Gheorghe) came into power in the late 1940s, he appointed Draghici minister of the interior, which controlled the regular and the secret police organizations. He was a close friend of Gheorghiu-Dej and was a frequent companion to the leader when Gheorghiu-Dej became ill with cancer.

When the first secretary was on the verge of death in 1965, Draghici became a compromise candidate to succeed him. His competitors were Gheorghe Apostol (see Apostol, Gheorghe), and Nicolae Ceausescu (see Ceausescu, Nicolae and Elena). Draghici was a formidable opponent since his control of the police forces gave him almost unlimited power, but Ceausescu skillfully outmaneuvered both him and Apostol and obtained the post of head of the Communist party.

In July 1965, at the ninth congress of the Romanian Communist party, Ceausescu succeeded in increasing the membership of the Central Committee of the party where his power base was. At the same time, he reduced the number of the members of the Politburo, where Draghici and Apostol had the most support. Finally, Draghici was removed as minister of the interior, losing control of his most powerful instrument. But this was not enough for the new leader. At a meeting of the Central Committee, Ceausescu openly criticized Draghici as the man directly responsible for the torture and show trials of the interwar leadership of the Communist party, especially Lucretiu Patrascanu (seePatrascanu, Lucretiu) and Stefan Foris. ( Patrascanu was executed in 1954; Foris was beaten to death by a secret police thug in 1949). For good measure, Ceausescu added that the Politburo also knew about the fabricated charges and approved the death sentence of Patrascanu in spite of this knowledge. Draghici was removed from the leadership because of these charges, but he survived Ceausescu and the revolution.


Bibliography

Almond Mark, The Rise and Fall of Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu ( London, 1992).

Economic Policies Communist Romania. The aim of the communist government in Romania was, as elsewhere in the East European countries, to nationalize all industry, banking, and their auxiliary services and then to use the system to serve as an instrument for socialist construction. By June 1948, most privately owned firms and banks had been taken over by the government without compensation to their former owners. Foreign-owned companies shared in this process. By 1960, over 98 percent of all firms were nationalized.

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