To: John Kerry
Secretary of State of the United States of America
Dear Mr. Secretary of State,
In a televised interview with the Moldovan public broadcaster, Moldova 1, the Ambassador of the U.S.A. to the Republic of Moldova, James D. Pettit, made some controversial statements. In particular, he declared that „joining Romania is not a practical choice […] which will make things better,” „Moldova is not Romania; Moldova has its own unique challenges, among those challenges is a fact that it is a multiethnic country,” and „[Moldovans should] recognize themselves as Moldovans, a specific nationality.” Such statements came as a big surprise to a wide audience within the Republic of Moldova, as they represent a mirror image of Russian Foreign Policy in the region. The Ambassador’s statement touched several sensitive matters in Moldovan society as follows.
First of all, the idea of Moldovans as a separate nationality has been thought and implemented by the Soviet Union, in an attempt to provide an ideological foundation for their regime of occupation after 1940. It is a fact that the main population of Romania and the Republic of Moldova consists of the same ethnic group and shares the same common ethnic characteristics, such as language, religion, tradition and culture. The idea of a separate Moldovan nationality is currently still advanced by the Russian Federation in an attempt to maintain the Republic of Moldova within its influence, as well as by pro-Russian politicians in Moldova in an attempt to gain the favor of Russia.
Second, the desire for reunification with Romania is shared by a sizeable proportion of the Moldovan population, from 17% to 52% according to different studies. The most prevalent among these are young, educated people with pro-Western beliefs and ideals, who see the U.S.A. as an allied nation and one of their most important role models. On the other hand, opponents of the reunification are more likely to be more hostile towards the U.S.A. and friendlier towards Russia. The Ambassador’s declarations therefore sow a seed of dismay in the hearts of pro-Europeans and U.S. supporters in Moldova and inspire Russian supporters with yet more zeal and courage.
From a legal perspective, The Helsinki Accords of 1975, to which the U.S.A. is strongly committed, stipulate that “By virtue of the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, all peoples always have the right, in full freedom, to determine, when and as they wish, their internal and external political status, without external interference[…].” Reunification is therefore a right of the citizens of Romania and the Republic of Moldova, and the Ambassador’s statements represent external interference in this matter. Representatives of the Russian Federation have constantly exercised such external interference in their declarations and actions, but we are stupefied to witness similar conduct from a diplomatic representative of the United States. Not only does it show lack of diplomatic protocol, but also goes against the principles of freedom, democracy and self-determination so much cherished by the American People and laid down in the founding acts of the United States.
Furthermore, the U.S. Senate has voted a resolution on June 28, 1991, which recommends the U.S. Government to “1. support the right to self-determination of the people of Moldova and Northern Bukovina, occupied by the Soviets, and to draft a decision to this end; 2. support the future efforts of the Government of Moldova to negotiate, if it desires so, a peaceful reunification of Moldova and northern Bukovina with Romania, as established in the Treaty of Paris (1920), respecting the existing norms of international law and principle 1 of the Helsinki Act.” The Ambassador’s declarations imply that the U.S. has reneged on its commitments made previously and made a U-turn with respect to its foreign policy in Eastern Europe.
Third, the declaration that the Republic of Moldova is a multiethnic state is disproven by data. The census of 2004 shows that the main ethnic group (whether they are called Moldovans or Romanians) make up 78% of the total population, and that share has only risen ever since. The idea of a multiethnic republic was part of the core ideology of the Soviet Union, whose ultimate goal was to assimilate the Romanian locals and ensure the dominance of Russian language and culture. This line of ideology is currently continued by the Russian Federation and its supporters in the Republic of Moldova.
In conclusion, Your Excellency can see many reasons why the latest statements of the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Moldova can be considered offensive, discriminatory and outrageous. In the name of the members and supporters of our party, as well as all citizens of the Republic of Moldova who identify as Romanian and reaffirm their common history and culture with Romania, we sincerely hope that these statements were merely an expression of the Ambassador’s personal opinion and do not reflect the official line of U.S. foreign policy. We kindly ask Your Excellency to clarify the situation in this regard and take appropriate measures regarding this matter.
We express our deepest consideration and kindly await your reply.
Political Party “Dreapta”
30 August 2016