People in Serbia asked me many times "How is to live in Romania? How are the people there?" Almost the same questions asked me people here about Serbians. From my experience, I can say there are no differences in mentality between the two nations, just the individual differences. Although my neighbors think that Serbians are more happy in general :confused: I tend not to judge people on what nation they belong to.
In 1947, the communists forced King Michael I to abdicate and leave the country, and proclaimed Romania a people's republic. In 1948, the state began to nationalize private firms, and to collectivize agriculture the following year. From the late 1940s to the early 1960s, the Communist government established a reign of terror, carried out mainly through the Securitate (the new secret police). During this time they launched several campaigns to eliminate "enemies of the state", in which numerous individuals were killed or imprisoned for arbitrary political or economic reasons.
In 1965, Nicolae Ceauşescu came to power and started to pursue independent policies such as being the only Warsaw Pact country to condemn the Soviet led 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia. He eventually initiated a project of total reimbursement of the foreign debt by imposing policies that impoverished Romanians and exhausted the Romanian economy, while also greatly extending the authority of the police state, and imposing a cult of personality. These led to a dramatic decrease in Ceauşescu's popularity and culminated in his overthrow and execution in 1989.
Some Romanians, mostly elderly people, think that life before the revolution was better. Some of their arguments are: young married couples receive an apartment from the state, graduates students got a job, education was free, health care was free.
But people didn't have a freedom of talk, people didn't have freedom to travel, only in some communist countries. There were restrictions on food, on electricity and on heating. Television was only a few hours per day. People couldn't own foreign currency. After the revolution Romanians won freedom, to speak freely, to travel, study or work abroad and to choose their president in democratic elections.
From 2000 onwards, the Romanian economy was transformed into one of relative macroeconomic stability, characterized by high growth, low unemployment and declining inflation. Romania's integration into the European Union in 2007 had a significant influence on domestic politics of the country. As part of this process, Romania has initiated reforms, including judicial reform, has increased judicial cooperation with other member states and has taken steps against corruption.
Well, I think corruption is still a problem. Agriculture employs about 29% of the population (one of the highest rates in Europe). Romania is a large producer of many agricultural products and is currently expanding its forestry and fishery industries.
I realized that this is pretty wide topic and I can't include the all aspects of it, all things that had changed. You can ask me things that I didn't mention and I will try to answer it. I tried to look on things objectively as I didn't live in Romania before the revolution.
Although not all the promises are fulfilled and many people are still not satisfied with the situation in the country I would say that in general the life in Romania had changed in better.
In conclusion, the main achievements of the revolution are:
– abolition of a one-party leadership
– freedom of press, freedom of speech, and freedom of movement, which means respecting "human rights and fundamental freedoms"
– right of access to informations
– right to a better life for all citizens of Romania
– free and democratic elections
– right to free enterprise