What a contrast Transylvanian Iohannis makes – with his typically slow delivery! But it was this modesty and circumspection which won him his highly unexpected victory last month and which gives many Romanians the first hope they have had for some time…..
In 25 years, the Romanians have had only one brief five-year respite from the insidious poison which the plutocrats (regardless of political label) have been injecting into their veins. Iliescu – who led the palace revolution this time 25 years ago - may have been personally incorruptible but all his minions quickly took the silver; and University Professor Constantinescu simply proved unequal to the task of reform. By coincidence, the country’s first post-communist Prime Minister Petr Roman was talking volubly on his mobile (in French) in the English Bookshop at midday – but I failed to identify him. Otherwise I would have approached him to remind him that some 24 years ago, he gave me an hour-long interview…….