"WHEN ELECTED PRESIDENT I
PLAN TO MAKE IT UNDERSTOOD THAT IF ANY NATION, WHATEVER ITS POLITICAL
SYSTEM, DEPRIVES ITS PEOPLE OF BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS, THAT FACT WILL
HELP SHAPE OUR ATTITUDE TOWARD THAT NATION'S GOVERNMENT.
"IF OTHER NATIONS WANT OUR
FRIENDSHIP AND SUPPORT, THEY MUST UNDERSTAND THAT WE WANT TO SEE
BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS RESPECTED, AND THIS INCLUDES THE RIGHTS OF
HUNGARIANS WHEREVER THEY MAY BE".
October22, 1976 JIMMY CARTER
In spite of this promise given
to the American voters of Hungarian descent, and in spite of the
repeated protests by the American Hungarian Federation, the Transylvanian
World Federation, the Committee on Transylvania, the Committee
of Human Rights in Romania, the PolishHungarian World Federation
and Affiliated Organizations, and several other ethnic groups:
PRESIDENT CARTER RECOMMENDED YEAR
AFTER YEAR ECONOMIC AID TO THE COMMUNIST GOVERNMENT OF RUMANIA,
THE MOST BRUTAL OPPRESSOR OF HUMAN AND MINORITY RIGHTS ON THE
FACE OF THE EARTH!
Rumania Defeated Again!
The Transylvanian Quarterly
In spite of strong opposition
mistreatment of minorities.
On July 25, 1979, Rep. Richard
T. Schulze (RPhiladelphia) introduced a resolution in the
House of Representaties disapproving extension of the mostfavorednation
trade status for Rumania.
"The Rumanian government
continues to abuse the Hungarian population" spoke Congressman
Schulze (Congressional Records, House, July25, 1979). "There
are over 2.5 million Hungarians who are being forced to assimilate
themselves into the Rumanian culture. They have done away with
Hungarian schools, bilingual signs, and any form of selfadministration
for these Hungarian people. Today, Hungarians find it difficult
to find employment, and cities overwhelmingly populated by Hungarians
are governed by nonHungarian speaking mayors. The subcommittee
received very detailed, factual, wellsupported evidence,
confirmed also by independent Western sources, of a systematic
effort to destroy a whole network of Hungarian cultural institutions,
to deprive this ethnic group of its lanugage, traditions, and
"I emphasize the element
of destruction in this process." Schulze added. "It
is the closing of the schools where children can study in their
mother tongue. It is the elimination of one of Europe's oldest
universities. It is the campaign of extreme ethnic, cultural and
religious intolerance which the Hungarians are protesting. This
deculturization campaign is a very germane issue when we view
the full picture of Rumania's performance in human rights."
Congressman Christopher J. Dodd
(DConn.) remarked: "The plight of 2.5 million Hungarians
in that country can not be indifferent to us. Their condition,
instead of being improved, it has worsened."
Congressman Larry McDonald, (DGeorgia):
"Rumania shamelessly continues to suppress its national minorities,
especially the Hungarian minority..."
Congressman John H. Rousselot
"Reports indicate that the
ruling regime in Rumania is attempting to systematically eliminate
all facets of Hungarian culture. By prohibiting the usage of the
Hungarian language in public institutions and elsewhere, an effort
is being made to virtually deprive the Hungarians of their language
and thus, their cultural identity. Other steps taken toward denationalizing
Rumania's minorities include discrimination against minorities
in employment, and the absence of their representation in government.
Of course we are all familiar with those conditions described
by dissident Karoly Kiraly." (Editor's note: updated information
on the Kiraly case is given elsewhere on these pages.)
Congressman Edward J. Derwinski
(RIll.) remarked: "This discussion of Hungarian minority
rights is totally irrelevant because there is only one thing we
can do with the Hungarians (of Transylvania). If they are a minority
in Rumania, we could give the area back to Hungary!"
Good words spoken in behalf of
the oppressed Hungarians of Transylvania will not be forgotten
by the 1.2 million Americans of Hungarian descent. Neither will
be the names of those 125 enlightened and freedom loving political
leaders who, in true American tradition, stood up for the rights
of the oppressed against the oppressor, and voted "yea"
on the resolution aimed to strip the Rumanian government from
the benefit of American taxdollars in retaliation to their
extremely cruel treatment of the minorities.
Those who voted "nay"
and rejected the resolution did a great disservice, not just to
those oppressed millions who are looking with hope at the U.S.A.
as the champion of liberty, but to this country, also. Aiding
tyrants with American taxdollars is the complete denial
of everything this nation stands for.
We must assume that it was only
ignorance of the true facts which made those distinguished congressmen
and congresswomen cast their votes in approval of the vicious
minority policies of the Rumanian Communist Government (more NAZI
than Communist in its practices), refusing to reach out a helping
hand to those who are facing daily harassments, discriminations,
beatings, tortures, imprisonment, and lately, even nuclear radiation
while at the mercy of a government of hate and bigotry.
We know that the day will come
when our nation and our government will realize that lasting peace
and prosperity can be secured only through radical reliance on
the very princples this nation104
was built upon. If we truly believe
that "all men are created equal, endowed with inalienable
rights" we have no business degrading ourselves and our poltical
system by aiding those who practice tyrann,. cultural genocide,
and have no regard for the rights of other nationalities living
in captivity on occupied territories.
The names of those fine Americans
who voted against the world's most vicious oppressor are listed
James Abdnor, Rep. S. Dakota
Douglas Applegate, Dem. Ohio
Robert E. Badham, Rep. California
L. A. (Skip) Bafalis, Rep. Florida
Robert E. Bauman, Rep. Maryland
Robin L. Beard, Rep. Tennessee
Adam Benjamin. Jr., Dem. Indiana
Charles E. Bennett, Dem, Florida
Douglas K. Bereuter, Rep. Nebraska
Edwin R. Bethune, Jr., Rep. Arkansas
Jack Brinkley, Dem, Georgia
William S. Broomfield, Rep. Michigan
Clisir W. Burgener, Rep. California
William Carney, Rep. New York
Bill Chappell, Jr., Dem. Florida
Don H. Clausen, Rep. California
James C. Cleveland, Rep. New Hampshire
William F. Clinger, Jr., Rep.
James M. Collins, Rep. Texas
Silvio 0. Conte, Rep. Massachusetts
Daniel B. Crane, Rep. Illinois
Philip M. Crane, Rep. Illinois
Dan Daniel, Dem. Virginia
Robert W. Daniel, Jr., Rep. Virginia
William F. Dannemeyer, Rep. California
Robert W. Davis, Rep. Michigan
Joel H. Deckard, Rep. Indiana
Samuel L. Devine, Rep. Ohio
William L. Dickinson, Rep. Alabama
Christopher J. Dodd, Dem. Conn,
Robert K. Dornan, Rep. California
John S. Duncan, Rep. Tennessee
Mickey Edwards, Rep. Oklahoma
Glenn English, Dem. Oklahoma
Geraldine A. Ferraro, Dem. New
Newton Gingrich. Rep. Georgia
Barry M. Goldwater, Jr., Rep.
William F. Goodling, Rep. Penna.
Willis D. Gradison, Jr., Rep.
Phil Gramm, De., Texas
Charles F. Grassley, Rep. Iowa
William S. Green, Rep. New York
Tennyson Guyer, Rep. Ohio
Wayne Grisham, Rep. California
Tom Hagedorn, Rep. Minnesota
John P. Hammerschmidt, Rep. Ark.
Kent Hance, Dem. Texas
George Hansen, Rep. Idaho
William H. Harsha, Rep. Ohio
Elwood Hillis, Rep. Indiana
Jon Hinson, Rep. Mississippi
Marjorie S. Holt, Rep. Maryland
Larry S. Hopkins, Rep. Kentucky
Frank Horton, Rep. New York
Henry S. Hyde, Rep. Illinois
Richard H. Ichord, Dem, Mo.
James E. Jeffries, Rep. Kansas
Richard Kelly, Rep. Florida
Jack F. Kemp, Rep. New York
Thomas N. Kindness, Rep. Ohio
Peter H. Kostmayer, Dem. Penna.
Ken Kramer, Rep. Colorado
Robert S. Lagomarsino, Rep. Cal.
Delbert L. Latta, Rep. Ohio
Marvin Leath, Dem. Texas
Raymond F. Lederer, Dem. Penna.
Norman F. Lent, Rep. New York
Jerry Lewis, Rep. California
Bob Livingston, Rep. Louisiana
Trent Lott, Rep. Miss.
Stanley N. Lundine, Dem. New York
Dan Lungren, Rep. California
Robert McClory, Rep. Illinois
Joseph M. McDade, Rep. Penna.
Larry McDonald, Dem. Georgia
Ron Marlenee, Rep. Montana
Dan Marriott, Rep. Utah
Dawson Mathias, Dem. Georgia
Clarence E. Miller, Rep. Ohio
Donald J. Mitchell, Rep. New York
Carlos J. Moorhead, Rep. Calif.
Ronald M. Mottl, Dem. Ohio
Austin J. Murphy, Dem. Penna.
John T. Meyers, Rep. Indiana
Michael 0. Myers, Dem. Penna.
Mary Rose Oakar, Dem. Ohio
James J. Oberstar, Dern. Minn.
Leon E. Panetta, Dem, Calif.
Charles Pashayan, Jr., Rep. Calif.
Edward J. Patten, Dem. N.J.
Ron Paul, Rep. Texas
Thomas E. Petri, Rep. Wiac,
Carl D. Pursell, Rep. Mich.
Donald Lawrence Ritter, Rep. Penna,
Kenneth S. Robinson, Rep. Va.
Robert A. Roe, Dem. N.J.
Toby Roth, Rep. Wisc.
John H. Rousselot, Rep. Calif.
Eldon Rudd, Rep. Ariz.
Bill Royer. Rep. Calii.
Harold Runnels, Dem. New Mexico
Jim Santini, Dem. Nevada
David E. Satterfield III, Dem.
Harold S. Sawyer, Rep. Mich.
Richard T. Schulze, Rep. Pa.
Keith G. Sebelius, Rep. Kansas
James F. Sensenbrenner, Jr., Rep.
Norman D. Shumway, Rep. Calif.
Virginia Smith, Rep. Nebraska
Gene Snyder, Rep. Ky.
Gerald B. H. Solomon, Rep. N.Y.
Floyd Spence, Rep. S.C.
Arland Stangeland, Rep. Minn.
Steven D. Symmns, Rep. Idaho
Gene Taylor, Rep. Mo.
Paul S. Trible, Jr., Rep. Va.
Guy Vander Jagt, Rep. Mich.
Robert S. Walker, Rep. Pa.
Richard C. White, Dem. Texas
William G. Whitehurst, Rep. Va.
Robert (Bob) Whittaker, Rep. Kansas
Larry Winn, Jr., Rep. Kansas
Joe Wyatt, Jr., Dem. Texas
John W. Wydler, Rep. N.Y.
Chalmers P. Wylie, Rep. Ohio
Bill C. W. Young, Rep. Fla.
God bless you all!
YOUR FIRM STAND FOR JUSTICE AND
FREEDOM WILL BE REMEMBERED FOREVER!
HON. RICHARD T. SCHULZE
of Pennsylvania in
the House of Representatives
Thursday, June 5, 1980
Mr. Speaker, within a week, the
House of Representatives will again take up the issue of continued
mostfavorednation trade status benefits for Romania.
Last year, 125 of my colleagues
joined me in voting to terminate that status, because of the dismal
human rights record of Romania, which is one of the most deplorable
even among Communist states.
One facet of that record is the
Romanian regime's brutal treatment of its minorities. among them
2.5 million Hungarians, who are subjected to a relentless campaign
of discrimination, cultural deprivation. and forced assimilation.
This campaign resulted in one of the most courageous acts of dissent
of our time, the protest letters of Mr. Karoly Kiraly, former
alternate member of the Romanian party Politburo. Mr. Kiraly has
sacrificed his high position, risked the wellbeing of his
family and his own life by expressing his conscience and speaking
out against the oppression of his fellow Hungarians. As a result
of his letters he has been exiled, subjected to the most vicious
charges. and has lived under constant police surveillance and
harassment ever since.
Last January, I visited Romania
and intended to meet Mr. Kiraly to get his opinion firsthand.
However, the Romanian authorities denied me the opportunity to
meet him on the most flimsy pretexts. His voice of protest, however,
could not be silenced. Last February, he sent another extraordinary
protest letter to Romania's Prime Minister, Ilie Verdet. The letter
reveals the promises he received from the Romanian leadership
in an obvious attempt to silence him after his first letters of
1977. All of those promises have been broken, and the campaign
of cultural genocide continues unabated. I submit to you Mr. Kiraly's
letter as further evidence of the oppressiveness of the Ceausescu
Before we discuss Romania's trade
status once again, I urge my colleagues to pay close attention
to the words of this courageous individual. We must not turn a
deaf ear to those in the Communist world, who are natural allies
in our fight for the betterment of the human condition.
At this point, I enter into the
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD the letter of Kiraly Kiraly a great
champion of human rights.
COMRADE ILIE VERDET, Prime Minister
of the Socialist Republic of Rumania.
Two years have passed since our
last conversation at your office in the company of Petre Lupu,
Teodor Coman and Janos Vinte. Since that time, numerous events
have transpired in the life of our country. The 12th Congress
of the Rumanian Communist Party and the 2nd Congress of the Democratic
Front of the Socialist Union have been held. Our conversation
on October 4, 1977 was particularly significant. At your urgent
request, I submitted a memorandum (of which you kept two copies)
which summarized several key discussions and confrontations.
In essence, we agreed that I would
drop the idea of forming a new organization for the Coinhabiting
nationalities, whose function would have been to defend their
constitutional rights. I made this concession on the condition
that and I quote from the above mentioned memorandum:
"...all necessary steps are
taken to guarantee the rights provided for in the Constitution
and other laws, including the practical implementation of these
rights in all areas education, cultural activity and use
of the native tongue in all organizations and official bodies
without discrimination of any kind provided that disciplinary
action is taken against those individuals, government employees
and police officials who violate such rights."
"I abandoned the idea of
a new nationality statute on the grounds that the Party and government
leadership will take concrete measures to respect and implement
the Constitution and the laws of the Socialist Republic of Rumania.
My opinion with respect to the nationality statute is that as
soon as those provisions of the Constitution and other laws pertaining
to the nationalities are implemented, in other words, when the
nationalities are granted the unobstructed use of their rights,
the proposal for a nationality statute becomes unnecessary. In
that event, I am willing to give up the idea which was presented
in my letter to Comrade Verdet."
"What I do consistently maintain
is that definite steps must be taken toward the elimination of
the existing shortcomings and abuses, wherever and in whatever
form they appear."
During the discussion, you asked
me to be patient, because the Party would take steps to remedy
the mistakes which had been committed. I was gratified by your
assertion that these steps would he implemented after a thorough
and detailed analysis of the recommendations which I, and many
other nationality representatives in Rumania had made. Though
I did not trust entirely in these promises, I hoped and impatiently
waited for the deeds to follow. Unfortunately, practically nothing
has been done to solve these problems, to change the situation
of the national minorities. I am now compelled by these broken
promises to raise this question again. What has happened in the
area of minority problems, has engendered only dissatisfaction.
In the area of education the opportunity
for children to study in the mother tongue has narrowed even further.
Classes in the mother tongue have been eliminated. The discriminatory
Decree Law 258 was not repealed. In the Banat and the Mezoseg
region of Transylvania there are communities and cities where
there is not a single Hungarianlanguage class, elementary
or trade school. In Moldavia, in entirely Hungarian Csango communities,
no form of education in the mother tongue exists.
No improvements can be found in
the higher levels of education either, where the situation is
also continuously deteriorating.
Nothing has changed for the better
in the use of the mother tongues of the national minorities. In
the administraiton of justice, the state organs. etc., the only
language permitted is Rumanian. In meetings of the Party, the
trade unions, the Communist Youth League, as well as in meetings
of industrial or agricultural workers, all presentations are made
in the Rumanian language, even where the overwhelming majority
of the audience is not Rumanian. The Rumanian language remains
in use even at meetings of the Nationality Workers' Councils.
It appears that religious service is the only occasion when the
mother tongue may be used without restriction. However, the Moldavian
Csango villages are an exception even to this. In spite of the
fact that the inhabitants are all Hungarians and Roman Catholics,
they have Rumanian priests, and as a consequence, their services
are conducted not in their Hungarian mother tongue, but in the
Rumanian language. Not to mention the fact that in the Moldavian
villages inhabited by Csango Hungarians, all forms of schooling
and instruction in the mother tongue have been eliminated for
two decades. In the last census they were denied even the possibility
of declaring themselves Hungarian, and were officially declared
Rumanian. Such actions would not have happened in the past, even
under the most reactionary regimes.
As regards the Nationality Councils,
their activities are determined exclusively by orders from above.
These Councils do not represent the interests of the nationalities.
The people belonging to these nationalities cannot participate
in the activities of the Councils, and do not elect Council members.
The local authorities and the Party Central Committee appoint
them. The Party uses these Councils to enforce its own discriminatory
nationality policies. To get to the head of these Committees,
one must have the following qualifications:
He should be a man without character.
He should be able to clap vigorously.
He should speak only when the
Party asks him to, and he should say what the Party wants him
to say (naturally one must submit one's speeches in writing beforehand).
An extremely burning issue is
the total lack of protection of the collective rights of Rumania's
national minorities, whether the nationality group is large, as
in the case of the Hungarians and Germans, or small as in the
case of the Serbs, Russians, Turks, Bulgarians, etc. None of them
enjoys collective rights.
This lack precipitates the dissolution
of ethnic communities and renders their members increasingly defenseless
against the policies of forced assimilation. After getting rid
of the Jews, we are going in the most direct way toward getting
rid of the Saxons and Swabians, and finishing the denationalization
of such small ethnic communities as the Armenians, Tartars, Turks,
etc. All that remains is the problem of the Hungarians, which
is more intricate and more difficult to solve. Thus, the concept
of the political nation was borrowed from the arsenal of 19th
Century nationalism, and as a consequence, steps were taken to
intensify the forced assimilation of the national minorities:
All community organizations with
nationality characteristics were abolished.
The Ministry whose task it was
to oversee and protect the nationalities was abolished.
The Hungarian Autonomous Region
Since 1955, education in the mother
tongue has been curtailed, in the beginning through merger, then
In the interest of correcting
the errors and abuses committed against the nationalities, I consider
it necessary that the following measures be instituted:
1. Life within and without the
Party must be democratized. The machinations of the totally discredited
personality cult must be renounced if the nationality question
is to be assured an honorable solution.
2. With regard to the nationality
(a) Three official languages should
be equally recognized in the Socialist Republic of
Rumania: Rumanian, Hungarian and German.
(b) A suitable Nationality Statute
should be enacted.
(c) Organizations with elected
leadership should be established for the nationalities to practice
and protect their rights, as well as to serve the friendship
and fraternal cooperation between the majority and the minority
(d) In those areas where ethnic
communities, be they Hungarian, German, Serb, etc. are in the
majority, autonomous local administration should be established
on the county or province level. Even if the Rumanian inhabitants
are in a majority in the country as a whole, there are places,
communities, cities, indeed entire provinces in Transylvania
and the Banat, where people belonging to the various nationalities
live, and where they represent the majority,
(e) Radio and television programming,
and the press should be provided in three languages: Rumanian,
Hungarian, and German.
(f) In Transylvania the three
languages should be taught in a parallel manner in the schools,
and either none of them or all three of them should be mandatory
All this I propose and insist
upon, since equality cannot exist in a subordinate way. Whatever
is subordinate cannot be equal, especially in the problematic
area of nation and nationality. A subordinate man cannot be equal
as a citizen, he cannot be free of material, moral, and intellectual
oppression, he cannot be equal to his fellow man, before the Creator
and the law. A just society can oniy exist in a country with a
social system which realizes social and political equality not
in words but in practice.
February 10, 1980 Károly
(Editor's note; due
to lack of space Mr. Kiraly's letter had to be condensed. The
original letter in its entirety can be found in the Congressionai
Records, June 5, 1980 Pages E 27656667.