One More Step to Sfatul Tarii 2.0

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Semyon ALBU
The “Creeping Unirea” continues. Only now in a beautiful package and under the slogan of European integration
Today is another politically eventful day. There were protests in front of the parliament (and not only), while the state of emergency was routinely extended inside its walls. And all this amid the expectation of happiness in the form of a polished status of a “candidate for accession to the European Union”. Behind all these events there was one of the republic’s most significant dates – the anniversary of the Declaration on Sovereignty. The country’s leadership couldn’t even find a minute in its extremely busy schedule to lay flowers at the monument to Stefan cel Mare. There’s nothing surprising in that. Sovereignty is not popular to talk about these days. The state policy of the pro-European authorities – and it’s not just about PAS, but about its not less glorious predecessors as well – by 2022has turned Moldova into a bankrupt state, unable to meet the challenges of the times. We have become a boat without oars, whose only choice is which ship to tow, so as not to sink completely in the next storm. And the fare, unfortunately, is paid by actively trading the only remaining valuable Moldovan resource – its sovereignty. Our country is less independent in its decision-making today than ever before. Extreme dependence on foreign funds, a government that sees no other direction but the West, the population’s loss of hope for a better life in the foreseeable future – all this makes it easier to sell the republic into “the right” hands. We have become an object of international politics, where everything is decided for us – and our current ruling elites are only too happy about that. What will it lead to? Many would now name Unirea among the probable options. Encouraged by the electoral victory of its citizens in 2020-2021, Romania has firmly taken the reins of Moldova’s return to the Romanian world and clearly will not let them go. “Lobbying our interests in Brussels” and not only, Bucharest is gradually taking over all the issues of the country’s international activity, including European integration, and is dealing resulting in our leadership only being presented with ready-made decisions. E.g., the one on the mobilization of international financial support. Our neighbor is surely not looking out for us for simple charitable reasons. Improving people’s lives in their province-to-be is perfectly understandable. And that’s where we’re heading. Last week we took another step toward losing our statehood. Otherwise, how else to consider this innovation from PAS in the form of the Moldovan and Romanian parliaments’ joint session? Nothing of this kind has ever happened before in the relations between the two banks of the Prut River – maybe because no one saw any practical reason to bring the MPs from the two countries together in one place. After all, what could lawmakers do that could not be resolved by the executive branch? Especially when the practice of joint sessions of the governments has been resumed, and the delegations from the departments are constantly moving from one capital to another. The present authorities, in order to somehow reason such an action, included it in the general line of efforts to obtain the status of candidate to the EU. “The joint session of the parliaments of the Republic of Moldova and Romania ... is a strong message in support of our European integration efforts,” Igor Grosu said at a press conference. He also announced that it will not be a one-time event and will offer a new form of decision-making – parliamentary declarations on the results of joint meetings. Certainly, for the benefit of European integration as well. “Besides the event’s symbolism, I want this platform to serve as a guideline for the Moldovan legislative forum leadership in the process of EU accession negotiations. What we put in acts and laws citizens should feel in their in daily life. A better, happier life here at home,” the speaker said. The joint declaration is not without these European messages either – in it the countries pledged to cooperate, “especially in the context of Moldova’s being invited to become a candidate state to access European Union. It provides for interaction and coordination in justice and fight against corruption, state security, frontier management and protection of order, economy, culture, education, etc. it enlists practically all spheres of state life. However, no matter how the ruling party tried to present the “parliamentary union” as a European integration event, in fact it turned out to be quite unionist. There was a lot of talk about symbolism, “a common Romanian consciousness”, “two Romanian states” and “a single Romanian nation”. It was not without transparent hints of a possible reunification when the time comes, and it was performed by the Moldovan deputies. What’s interesting is while we were talking about “cooperation”, our Romanian colleagues, although diplomatically, were talking about the need to create common spaces. And they were “emphasizing” our countries’ linguistic, historical and cultural closeness which could be developed much more confidently and ambitiously than before. Here are two quotes from distinguished Romanian guests. President of the Senate Florin Citu: “Today we have a stronger strategic partnership than ever before. Romania has consistently respected all its bilateral commitments and has always made concrete efforts to support Moldova. Recently, we have been setting more and more ambitious goals to support Moldova’s European path and strategic projects of common interest in the fields of transport and infrastructure, as well as energy independence”. Ion-Marcel Ciolacu, President of the Chamber of Deputies: “The time has come to take over this common destiny by including the development of a common economic and commercial space and by facilitating the flow of people. It should be as easy for an entrepreneur to do business in Chisinau as it is in Bucharest, and to get from Iasi to Balti as it is from Alba Iulia to Cluj-Napoca.” Cooperation and common space are slightly different things assuming completely different goals. Bucharest sets its goals very clearly. No one is talking about unirea by rush, everything is done in a civilized manner by cutting off its neighbor’s sovereignty piece by piece and running its state tentacles into all its key sectors. Making it dependent on its energy supply, financial aid, military security. Our rulers not only allow this, but they encourage it – giving life to initiatives to jointly patrol the Moldovan territory, to allow foreign citizens to guard the borders, etc. It is also noticeable how Romania’s promotion in our country has increased many times since PAS came to power. The exclusive role of the neighboring country in the integration, its financial and investment assistance is stressed everywhere. And it is presented almost as an ideal for the “second Romanian state”, a real success story to strive for. That is also the goal of all these joint events. Apparently, they want the number of people yearning for unirea in Moldova to be equivalent to the number on the other side of the Prut River. And then, if anything, it will not be too difficult to sign a unirea agreement, even by means of a referendum.