[Congressional Record Volume 140, Number 122 (Tuesday, August 23, 1994)]
[Senate]
[Page S]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]


[Congressional Record: August 23, 1994]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

 
    THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF KING MICHAEL OF ROMANIA'S COURAGEOUS ACT

  Mr. PELL. Mr. President, this day marks an important anniversary for 
democrats in Romania and indeed throughout Europe and the United 
States.
  On August 23, 1944, King Michael of Romania played a critical role in 
the arrest of Marshall Ion Antonescu, Romania's pro-Nazi leader. He was 
in this way also responsible for allying Romania with the anti-Fascist 
forces fighting for Europe's freedom. King Michael was supported in 
this courageous act by various anti-Fascist Romanian political parties. 
On the 50th anniversary of this noble deed we remember our wartime 
alliance with the democratic forces of Romania--an alliance interrupted 
only by Stalin's takeover--which we are now fortunate to be able to 
renew.
  President Truman recognized the contribution of Romania's democrats 
and awarded the Legion of Merit to King Michael for his courageous 
efforts. I believe that, today, we too must remember and honor an 
important ally in the struggle against Nazi tyranny. I would ask that 
President Truman's citation be printed in the Record at this point.

  There being no objection, the citation was ordered to be printed in 
the Record as follows:


                                              The White House,

                                                   Washington, DC.

                    Citation for the Legion of Merit


                       degree of chief commander

       His Majesty King Mihai I of Rumania rendered exceptionally 
     meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding service 
     to the cause of the Allied Nations in the struggle against 
     Hitlerite Germany. In July and August, 1944, his Nation, 
     under the dominance of a dictatorial regime over which the 
     King had no control, have allied herself with the Germany 
     aggressors, he, King Mihai I, succeeded in giving purpose, 
     direction and inspiration to the theretofore uncoordinated 
     internal forces of opposition to the ruling dictator. In 
     culmination of his efforts, on 23 August, 1944, although his 
     capitol was still dominated by Germany troops, he personally, 
     on his own initiative, and in complete disregard for his own 
     safety, gave the signal for a coup d'etat by ordering his 
     palace guards to arrest the dictator and his chief ministers. 
     Immediately thereafter, in an inspired country-wide radio 
     address, he proclaimed to the Nation his decision to release 
     Rumania from the Nazi yoke and called upon his Army to turn 
     upon the German troops, and to kill, capture or drive them 
     from the country. Confronted with this forthright and 
     aggressive action on the part of their sovereign, the 
     response of the Rumanian people and the Rumanian Army was 
     wholehearted and immediate, with the result that, in the 
     space of a few days, the greater part of Rumania's territory 
     was liberated from Nazi control, and the main line of German 
     resistance on the Southwestern front was withdrawn over five 
     hundred kilometers to the Northwest. By his superior 
     judgment, his boldness of action and the high character of 
     his personal leadership, King Mihai I has made an outstanding 
     contribution to the cause of freedom and democracy.
     Harry S. Truman.

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