Timosoara Triggered Beginning Of End

As the facility is in the midst of being overrun by “counter-revolutionaries”, a helicopter carrying the soon-to-be executed dictator of Romania NICOLAE CEAUSESCU and his wife, ELENA, takes off from the roof of the Central Committee Building in the government district of Budapest on December 22, 1989. (Denoel Paris photo)

Italy international striker Marco Balotelli opened his account for English Premier League club Manchester City opposite CS FC TIMOSOARA in his very first game for his new club back in August of this year….

Discontent and unrest had done nothing but grow all throughout the Eastern Bloc during the 1980s. After the Fall of the Berlin Wall, one by one, the satellite communist governments of the Warsaw Pact nations peacefully relinquished their hold on power. With one noteworthy exception — Romania.

On December 17, 1989, a day after protests had broken out after the Romania Communist Party’s attempt to evict local dissident pastor LASZLO TOKES, even more violent demonstrations occured. The local government District Building was invaded and taken over. Soon, the dreaded Securitate, the ruthless Romanian secret police, as well as the national army predictably showed up.


Flanked by East Germany communist leader ERICH HOENECKER on his left, Romania dictator NICOLAE CEAUSESCU (polka-dotted tie) and, to his left, East Germany leader ERICH HOENECKER visit a color picture tube plant connected with the manufacture of televisions in East Berlin on May 30, 1985. (ADN-ZB-Mittlestadt)

The forces of the regime failed to restore order but did resort to violence and it is thought roughly one hundred citizens lost their life in Timosoara that day.

The news of the riots in Timosoara, although an attempt was made by Ceausescu and other government officials to blame the violence on “foreign influences” and “external aggression”, quickly spread all over Romania.

Within days, further rioting errupted in other cities such as Sibiu and even the capital, itself. Romania Communist Party leader NICOLAE CEAUSESCU, who had, by now, lost support of the national army, attempted to calm the situation with a public speech in Revolution Square on December 21 but was famously booed and jeered. The next day, the dictator and his detested wife were forced to flee the Central Committee Building in Budapest by helicopter.

For Ceausescu, the end came with the arrival of Christmas.


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