Moldova History

Moldovan history started when it was part of a the larger region of Moldavia, but has spent most of its history in the grasp of the Former Soviet Union or Romania as it lies between these two countries. Due to its unsettled history it has been renamed, overrun, split up, conquered and taken over many times over. To get where Moldova is today has been a very rocky ride to say the least. Moldovans descend from what were the Dacians who were conquered by the Romans round about 100 AD.

 

During the 14th Century, under the rule of Stefan cel Mare (Stephen the Great) Moldavia flourished, but the Turkish army had become to strong, and by the time his son succeeded him Moldavia was taken over by the Ottoman Empire. The Turkish Suzerainty then remained until 1711, it was then that the Russians appeared on the scene for the first time. The first battle between the Turks and Russians resulted in a continued Turkish rule, but during the next century Moldova was the scene of much fighting and skirmishes seeing it change hands more than nearly any place on the planet. In 1812 fighting between the Turks and Russians were suspended for a time due to the signing of the Bucharest Treaty, which gave the eastern part to the Russians (Bessarabia) and the rest of Moldavia to Romania. Eventually in 1878 Russia expanded the Bessarabia borders into Romania with some help from other powerful countries at the time.

Bessarabia remained under Russian rule until 1918 when the Bolshevik revolution took place, and as a result Bessarabia reacted by declaring itself as an autonomous republic. After a few trial invasions by the Ukraine it decided to reunite with Romania as a protective measure. Autonomy was granted by Lenin but The reunification with this old enemy did not go down well with Russia and the reunification was never recognized. In 1924 a group of peasants, loyal to Lenin formed the breakaway Moldavian Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, otherwise known as MASSR. This later was renamed the Transdniestr Republic. I in 1940 there was yet another agreement, this time the Soviet-German Agreement on the division of Eastern Europe, which handed Bassarabia back to the USSR and was renamed Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic or MSSR.

Between 1941 and 1944 the area was yet again reoccupied by the Romanian forces and thousands of Bessarabians Jews were sent to Auschwitz. In 1944 the Romanian forces failed to keep a grip of the country and yet again it was the Soviet Union who took control and tried to impose unnatural order on the people. With the collapse of communism in the 1980s the Moldovan Popular Front finally got a chance to air their views. Several years of consultation and reform followed and in 1989 the Latin alphabet was reinstated as the official written language, In 1990 the moldovan flag was instated and the declaration of Moldovan sovereignty was passed. Finally the big moment came, in 1991 Moldova was declared an independent republic and communist Mircea Snegur was its first democratically elected president.

Between 1941 and 1944 the area was yet again reoccupied by the Romanian forces and thousands of Bessarabians Jews were sent to Auschwitz. In 1944 the Romanian forces failed to keep a grip of the country and yet again it was the Soviet Union who took control and tried to impose unnatural order on the people. With the collapse of communism in the 1980s the Moldovan Popular Front finally got a chance to air their views. Several years of consultation and reform followed and in 1989 the Latin alphabet was reinstated as the official written language, In 1990 the moldovan flag was instated and the declaration of Moldovan sovereignty was passed. Finally the big moment came, in 1991 Moldova was declared an independent republic and communist Mircea Snegur was its first democratically elected president.

Moldova's independence may have solved most of its problems but it has also created some new ones. The Slavic's in Transdniestr are keen to keep their culture and ties with Russia while in the south the Gagauz ( Turkish Speaking ) are worried about a reunification with Romania. since Moldova became a republic the Transdniestr authorities broke away and reinstated their loyalties to Russia. The Gagauz then started talking about their own breakaway republic in the south causing the new Republic of Moldova to shrink day by day. The Gagauz gave up eventually with promises of more authority and representation in government, but the Transdniestr republic carried on its refusal to join Moldova.

Mass protests of up to 50,000 people were held in the capital on an almost daily basis from early 2002. ( I know I was there ) The protest were to try to reinstate the Russian language on what is predominantly a Romanian speaking country. After the weird disappearance of two key people in parliament the protests grew, with demands for the presidents resignation. Veronin brought in the army bringing the disruption to an end almost. Protest still go on today in Moldova, and the problems in Transdniestr remain unsolved