- The Gang of Four
- Et tu, Liudochka?
- Podul de piatra s-a deramat
I am talking, of course, about today's decision by four communist deputies to leave the Parliamentary faction. In former times three of the four have been leading lights within the party and close associates of Vladimir Voronin:
- Vladimir Turcan, trusted by Voronin as ambassador to Moscow and lately the 'friendly face' of the party to the general public, like Voronin a former general in the police force.
- Victor Stepaniuc, until recently the country's leading Moldovenist (although he has been repenting of some of his more extreme positions lately)
- Liudmila Belcencova, until recently one of the party's main propagandists, employed as a journalist with the Voronin-owned television station NIT.
- Valentin Guznac, who hails from the communist fortress of Balti.
These desertions (8% of the PCRM's deputies) must be personally painful for Voronin, and really show that he has lost control of the party to Mark Tkaciuc.
While any day the communists lose people is a good day for Moldova, it would be best to keep the champagne on ice for the time being. The 'gang of four' remain died-in-the-wool communists; in fact, one of the reasons given for their departure is that the communist party is 'promoting the extreme right'. The other reason is, of course, the failure of the PCRM to vote for Marian Lupu as president.
The best that one can hope for is that this group will form the core of a 'democratic socialist' party that will be reasonably constructive and somewhat less romanophobic than the PCRM. In the worst case, they will just be a more intelligent and therefore even more dangerous version of the existing communist party.
The PCRM, on the other hand will continue to bleed for some time to come, eventually reducing to a small, still undemocratic, economically centrist party whose major appeal is to the rusofone minority. With Tkaciuc at the helm it can't really be anything else.