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Political parties in Romania

Last modified: 2006-09-23 by rob raeside
Keywords: romania | coat of arms | francophonie |
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Political Parties with known flags or emblems:

Political Parties whose flags are unknown:

  • Alianţa pentru România - ApR (now merged with Partidul Naţional Liberal - PNL)
  • Alianţa Natională Creştin Democrată - ANCD (no longer extant)
  • Comunitatea 'Bratstvo' a Bulgarilor din România - CBBR
  • Comunitatea Italiană din România - Socola, Iaşi - CIRI
  • Comunitatea Ruşilor Lipoveni din România - CRLR
  • Convenţia Democrată Română - CDR (no longer extant)
  • Federaţia Comunităţilor Evreieşti din România - FCER
  • Federaţia Ecologistă din România - FER
  • Forumul Democrat al Germanilor din România - FDGR
  • Partida Romilor
  • Partidul Alianţa Civică - PAC (merged with Partidul Naţional Liberal - PNL)
  • Partidul Democrat - PD
  • Partidul Democrat Agrar din România - PDAR (merged with Partidul Social Democrat - PSD)
  • Partidul Democraţiei Sociale din România - PDSR (changed name to Partidul Social Democrat - PSD)
  • Partidul Ecologist Român - PER
  • Partidul Initiativa Nationala - PIN
  • Partidul National Democrat Crestin - PNDC
  • Partidul Naţional Liberal - Convenţia Democrată - PNL-CD (no longer extant)
  • Partidul Naţional ţărănesc Creştin Democrat - PNȚCD
  • Partidul Pentru Patrie - PPP
  • Partidul România Mare - PRM
  • Partidul Social Democrat Român - PSDR
  • Partidul Socialist - PS (merged with Partidul Social Democrat - PSD)
  • Partidul Socialist al Muncii - PSM (merged with Partidul Social Democrat - PSD)
  • Partidul Umanist din România - PUR (now called Partidul Conservator PC)
  • Partidul Unității Naţionale Române - PUNR
  • Partidul Vieţii Româneşti - PVR
  • Uniunea Armenilor din România - UAR
  • Uniunea Culturala a Albanezilor din România - UCAR
  • Uniunea Democrată a Sîrbilor şi Caraşovenilor din România - UDSCR
  • Uniunea Democratică a Slovacilor şi Cehilor din România - UDSCR
  • Uniunea Democrată a Tătarilor Turco-Musulmani din România - UDTTMR
  • Uniunea Democrată Turcă din România - UDTR
  • Uniunea Elenă din România - UER
  • Uniunea Forţelor de Dreapta - UFD (merged with Partidul Naţional Liberal - PNL)
  • Uniunea pentru Reconstructia Romaniei - URR
  • Uniunea Polonezilor din România 'Dom Polski' - UPR
  • Uniunea Ucrainenilor din România - UUR

See also:

Romanian Fascists

by Dan Anton Dima, 15 May 2005

The flag I know of should be plain green - of a very "cold" hue - standing for freshness and purity (apparently); the color also featured on their uniforms. The triple cross is, most likely, black - as should be consistent with black-and-white photos in historical magazines. It could also be white, but not on the images I've seen. In fact, on the whole, it doesn't really matter. The Iron Guard did not favor a specific pattern, as long as it included the cross. I have also seen instances where it has a generic Nazi feel, but I couldn't tell whether the basic color was green(ish) or just plain red. There, the symbol was definitely black. It should be noted that, before and after being in power, the Guard extensively used the Romanian symbols, and it almost never did unify political and national symbols. Almost never! as I am very sure a version of the national flag with the triple cross was carried on some parades in the 30s and 40s. The symbol, which is always simple (it has no "serifs" like the FSU one, and does not have lengthened ends), is called, rather whimsically, "The Archangel Michael's Cross". In fact, it stands for prison bars and is (no connection to jail!) an ever-present style of Romanian votive wooden crosses by the roadside. Prison was where the movement's founder, Corneliu Zelea Codreanu, wrote his "Mein Kampf". He claimed he was inspired by an icon depicting the Archangel, as an "almost living presence".

There are surviving groups that evoke the Iron Guard legacy. One is simply called "The Legionnaire Movement", and uses the black triple cross symbol without associating it with any flag - they use a simple Romanian flag in parallel. The symbol is in defiance of Romanian law, but they have a way of being discreet. On the other hand, "The New Right", which could be a splinter-group or the official voice, uses cold-green (almost bluish) or black flags, with a white Celtic Cross, which is sometimes outlined in the main color of the flag, marked with a contour of white again.
Dan Anton Dima, 15 May 2005

A short glimpse into Iron Guard history. First of all, it should be noted that, out of the many names the movement had, Romanians tend to prefer not "guardians" or "Iron Guardsmen", but "legionari", "legionnaires" ("the legionnaires" is, in Romanian, "legionarii"). The first name of the group was "Legiunea Arhanghelului Mihail" - "The Legion of the Archangel Michael"- it also went through "[The] Everything for the Country [Party]" in the 1930s, when it ran in elections; "Mițcarea Legionară" - "The Legionnaire Movement" is the generic term. Codreanu was, in his Iați University years - ca. 1920, a member of an anti-Semitic party called "The National-Christian Defense League". He made himself known for supporting a "numerus clausus" (restricted percentage) for Jews wishing to attend University and for breaking up communist and social-democratic rallies in the city. The League itself was a primitive political group, which could act with extreme violence. Its leader, a certain A.C.Cuza (not to be mistaken for XIXth century Prince Alexandru Cuza), claimed to have "invented" the swastika back in 1918-19, during the time when it was a very obscure, but certainly anti-Jewish symbol (the party had Romanian flags with the black crooked-cross on them, although this was slightly "thinner", as if drawn in pencil). Codreanu's philosophy was somewhat complex, or, in any case, original. He founded the embryonic splinter-group ca. 1926 with a message advocating Eastern Orthodox awakening, and an economical agenda of populist persuasion (they meant to extend individually-owned plots of land to all the land available!) and, sometimes, of socialist intent. The main reason for his anti-Semitism was a medieval-Christian attitude, mainly suspicion and punishment for "the killers of Jesus". His time in jail had happened after he himself killed the prefect for Iați county in 1923 - it must be said, however, that Codreanu was brutalized by the police, prior to that. The movement added death- and persecution-defying attitudes to its aesthetics, and a will to defy each political attitude in the establishment (Codreanu was at odds with fellow fascists). It went on to gather an ever-growing following, uniting chunks of the social spectrum, from members of the - not very dominant - aristocracy to large groups of peasants. The movement took part in the Spanish Civil War, and they had two prominent victims, both close two Codreanu, in the battle of Majadahonda. The Leader was thought to be extremely charismatic: when he was banned from talking at electoral meetings, he kept on being convincing by just smiling. The end of him came in 1938, when he was assassinated after the Guard started its conflict with King Carol (Charles) II. The King thought he could establish a fascist regime, and tried to. This implied banning all parties, with the legionnaires either surrendering (for Carol to lead the party) or dissolving. A campaign of assassinations ensued (it has always been a favorite of the Guard - they formed tens of death squads throughout their history), and it was still undecided by 1940: even though they had killed a prime-minister, they were decimated. In 1940, however, the King yielded power. This had nothing to do with the political battle: Romania, tied to the UK and France, was left without cover in front of the "New Order". Through the German-Soviet pact, it lost Bessarabia and northern Bukowina. The Germans and Italians backed Hungary's request for northern Transylvania. Thus, Romania lost a huge territory, without having gone to war, in a couple of months. Carol left, and a new government took over. It was officially a "crisis" government, but it became the building block of the "National-Legionnaire State": Mihai I was a ceremonial king, Horia Sima - new leader of the Guard/Legion - was an important political figure, and General (later Marshall) Antonescu was "Leader of the State". From the very beginning, Legion and Army were hardly reconcilable. They both, however, could agree on politics of persecution and murder, mainly of Jews and Gipsies. In Feb. 1941, tired of sharing power with a group that he deemed disorderly and fanatical, Antonescu turned against his partners. Significantly, he was backed by Hitler, who enjoyed a good communication with the General - add to this that he needed Romanian oil and military backing for the Russian campaign which was meant to start. The days of the Rebellion - as the Legion response is known -bloody, with over 400 civilians killed. The more notable legionnaires left for Germany, and they were detained in (the more acceptable parts of) the concentration camps: they were taken out to form an exile government after the fall of Antonescu in the pro-Allied coup (Aug. 1944), and fought for Hitler until the very end. They took refuge in Spain and Portugal, and directed an anti-communist propaganda service, without much success (as they were, of course, generally discredited).
Dan Anton Dima, 15 May 2005

A variant of the flag of the Iron Guard

image by Tomislav Todorovic and Mladen Mijatov, 17 June 2006

All information included in this contribution are presented for vexillological purposes only. The political attitudes of the users of the described flags do not represent those of the contributor.

In May 2001, I discovered via the Google some Web pages about the Iron Guard, which no longer exist, where was written that the black grid symbol was adopted by the movement in 1938 as the symbol of martyrdom of their founder C. Z. Codreanu, who had previously been killed in an alleged attempt of escape from the prison (nowadays generally considered as a fabrication covering the murder - this might be believed in, as that was an anti-Fascist site). One of those pages contained black and white photos from some rallies of the Iron Guard, with flags charged with the black grid on dark field (colour not described, but it must have been green). The distances between the bars forming the grid were equal to their width, so the symbol looked as if it was composed of small squares. The grid symbol with the same form was also appearing on other Web pages which no longer exist, in 2001 and later.

The image above is the reconstruction of the described flag of the Iron Guard. The image is partly based (the field colour) on the image at the top of this page, which was created by Dan Anton Dima.
Tomislav Todorovic, 17 June 2006

Early flag of the Iron Guard

According to Todor Kuljic, "Fascism", p. 97, the Iron Guard had originally used the swastika symbol; after giving the founding date of the party (1927), the book says: "The black flag of the movement with the swastika in a white circle soon became well-known in Romania." No other details about this flag are given, but the symbol must have been borrowed from the National-Christian Defense League, whose member Codreanu originally was. The flag must have been withdrawn from use by 1938, as flags with the black grid were introduced then; the source says nothing about that.

A flag of Romanian neo-Fascists

image by Tomislav Todorovic and Mladen Mijatov, 17 June 2006

In May 2001, together with the pages about the Iron Guard described above, I discovered the site of a modern organization which used that name. The site was entirely in Romanian, but it contained the photos showing the members with the flags of the organization, which was dark green (FOTW colour V++ or a bit darker) with the golden grid - yellow, in fact, as one of the photos showed the flag on the wall, together with the national flag of Romania, and the grid was obviously in the same shade of colour as the yellow field of Romanian flag. The users of this flag probably thought that the black colour of the grid, as the symbol of mourning, was no longer convenient for them, so they replaced it with the gold/yellow, which might better represent their glorification of their killed predecessors (and is also one of their national colours). The form of the grid was the same as on the previously described flag - as if being composed of small squares. The said site seems to have been closed shortly afterwards and has not reappeared ever again, so this organization was probably either dissolved or forced into hiding.
Tomislav Todorovic, 17 June 2006

Kuljić, Todor: Fašizam
Belgrade: Nolit, 1987, (2nd revised and expanded edition)
ISBN 86-19-01480-3

Partidul Social Democrat, PSD

Social Democratic Party of Romania. At one will see a dark blue flag with the party insignia of three roses and the initials PSD.
Knut A Berg, 19 February 2006

Partidul Conservator

The Conservative Party of Romania has at*_Doctrina
(3) Semnul permanent al Partidul Conservator este o balanta in echilibru inscrisa in initiala C stilizata si denumirea completa a Partidului Conservator.
(4) Drapelul Partidului Conservator este bleu/albastru, avand in centru imprimat semnul partidului.
Translated: the party symbol is a pair of scales in equilibrium inside a stylizised C and the party flag is blue with the party symbol in the centre
Knut A Berg, 19 February 2006

Partidul Naţional Liberal

The Partidul Naţional Liberal (National Liberal Party) has in its statutes:
Semnul permanent al partidului este săgeata în pătrat sub care se află prescurtarea PNL.
Semnul electoral al partidului este identic cu semnul permanent.
Culorile partidului sunt albastru şi galben. Drapelul partidului este galben, în centru fiind plasat semnul permanent.

Evidently, from the site, the party symbol is a blue diagonal arrow on a yellow field, see, the party flag is yellow with the party symbol in the centre.
Knut A Berg, 19 February 2006