Today dated Tuesday December 26th 1989
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What a cheerful headline for Boxing Day 1989.
Romania became a Communist country in 1947 and Nicolae Ceausescu soon found himself a series of important posts in the Government finally becoming second in command to President Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej. When Gheorghiu-Dej died in 1965 Ceausescu took over. He ran an extremely strict Communist state allowing no criticism or debate.
In 1982 he ordered the export of much of the country’s agricultural and industrial production. The resulting extreme shortages of food, fuel, energy, medicines, and other basic necessities drastically lowered living standards and intensified unrest. He appointed his wife, Elena, and many members of his extended family to government and Communist party posts.
The Ceausescu regime collapsed after he ordered the police to fire on anti-government demonstrators on Dec. 17, 1989. The demonstrations spread to Bucharest, and on December 22 the Romanian army defected to the demonstrators. That same day he and his wife fled from the capital in a helicopter but were captured and taken into custody by the Army. On December 25 the couple were hurriedly tried and convicted by a special military tribunal on charges of mass murder and other crimes. Ceausescu and his wife were then shot by a firing squad.