Summer Fall 2004 by O998zF0H

VIEWS: 0 PAGES: 12

									Volume VIII / Issue II / III                                                                                     Summer / Fall 2004

                                                    CORA Has Three New                         CORA Meets with New
                                                        Members                                Ambassador to Romania
                                               Two organizations of American parents      J.D. Crouch, II went to Romania in July
 2004 CORA Annual                              who have adopted Romanian children         as Ambassador.          Michael Guest
                                                                                          completed his three year tour of duty and
      Meeting                                  have joined CORA. The two groups
                                               are: “Nobody’s Children” out of New        was decorated by the President of
                                               Hampshire and “Save the Children           Romania on June 23rd at the Cotroceni
        Tentative Schedule                     S.O.S.” located in Connecticut.            Palace. He was awarded the “Order for
       & Registration Form                     Romanian Satellite Television featured     Special Service in Rank of Grand Cross.”
                                               in our last newsletter has also joined
                         details on page two   CORA. Welcome all! 
                                               ________________________________
      Restitution of Religious
      Properties in Romania                      CORA Meets with Damon
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
                                                Wilson, Director for Central,
sponsored a presentation by a Hungarian            Eastern and Northern
American leader/lobbyist on the issue of          European Affairs, NSC
Restitution of Religious Properties in
Romania. The presentation reviewed the         Following        accolades    regarding
experiences of the different minority          Romania’s invitation into NATO on                  Reception for the new U.S. Ambassador
religions in recovering the properties they    March 29, 2004, Damon Wilson, whose           Armand Scala, Donald Rumsfeld, George Sfedu,
felt were taken from them by the               responsibilities encompass 22 countries,                   Steven Bonică, Amb. J.D. Crouch
                                                                                                   Residence of the Romanian Ambassador
Communist regime. The presentation was         including helping to manage the
                                                                                                                   continued on page three
not accusatory. One could conclude                    European members of the Coalition in              Romania Joins NATO




                                                                                                                                              INSIDE
however, that difficulties experienced by             Iraq, listed a three-fold priority               page three
the claimants resulted from the                       framework        regarding     the    U.S.        Victims of Communism Memorial
association of the Romanian Government                Government’s focus on Romania. First,            Foundation – Status Report
and the Orthodox Church in that country.              internal domestic issues (or the micro-          page three
                                                      tier), focus on the commitments that              RACC Leadership Council Meeting
                           continued on page four
                                                      Romania has made to its NATO                     Summary
_________________________________                     candidacy       and    European      Union       page four
                                                      accession. Damon Wilson expressed                 Senior Romania Working Group
          New Adoption Law                            most concern in this category due to the         Sponsored by CSIS and RRBC
  International Adoption Procedures                   ongoing need for reform and the ever-            page four
                                                      present corruption concerns internally.           Romania's New Adoption Laws: A
                                                      Second, regional issues (or the middle-          Mom's Perspective
                                                      tier) focus on Romania’s role, strength,         page five
                                                      and future leadership in the region. Mr.          For the Children - SOS
                                                      Wilson expressed special attentiveness to        page five
                                                      the role of Romania in relation to Serbia.
                                                                                                        Fourth Edition of        Romanian-
                                                      Third, global issues (or the macro-tier)         American Yellow Pages
                                                      engage Romania’s NATO membership in              page five
                                                      international challenges and results in
                                                      Romanian troops overseas (i.e. Iraq or            “A Visit to Romania May-June
                                                                                                       2004”
                                                      Afghanistan). For example, how does the          page six
       Children protesting the new adoption law       bilateral relationship of the United States
                                                      and Romania promote global security?              The New U.S. Ambassador to
 during Prime Minister Năstase’s visit to the U.S.
                                                                                                       Romania: Jack Dyer Crouch II
                               details on page five                          continued on page seven   page eight
CORA Newsletter     3



                            2004 CORA ANNUAL MEETING
     CONGRESS OF ROMANIAN AMERICANS & U.S. NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS
                               October 15 & 16 2004

                                          TENTATIVE MEETING SCHEDULE
                                                 (subject to change)

   Thursday, October 14
   7:30 pm        Early Arrivals-Cocktails Home of Armand Scala- Reservation Required

   Friday, October 15
   9:00 am         NGO’s Set Up Displays
   9:15 am         Leave for White House
   10:00 am        White House Tour Reservation Required
   11:00 am        Special Assistant to the President of the U.S., NSC, The White House, Old Executive Office Building
   12:30 pm        Lunch-Former U.S. Ambassador to Romania, Michael Guest (invited)
   1:45 pm         Mark Meyer, Esq. Romanian American Chamber of Commerce. Discussion of Property Restitution,
                   Corruption, Business Climate, etc.
   3:00 pm         Panel - International Adoptions of Romanian Children
   4:00 pm         Panel - Successful Americans Doing Business in Romania
   6:45 pm         Cocktails and Dinner - Embassy of Romania, Romanian Ambassador to the U.N. (invited)

   Saturday, October 16
   9:00 am        Description by NGOs of Projects in Romania, Their Experiences, Reaction to the People, the Country
   10:00 am       Politics and Economy of Romania, Drs. C. King & V. Tismăneanu (invited)
   11:00 am       Military Cooperation Between the U.S. & Romania, US & Romanian Military Representatives (invited)
   12:15 pm       Lunch – Dr. Kent Hill, Assistant Administrator, USAID
   2:00 pm        CORA Business Meeting
   3:00 pm        Adjournment

                                              REGISTRATION FORM
                                       (please attach project description or flyer)
   Name: _______________________ Tel: ____________________ Name of Organization: __________________________

   Additional Participants (NGO Only):

   Org. Address: _________________________________ Tel: ____________________ Fax: _________________________

   Website: _____________________ E-mail: _________________________

   Registration Fees: $75/person (students call CORA)                     ____ x $75 = $______
                     Number of additional persons (NGOs only)             ____ x $25 = $______
   Meals:            Number of persons for Lunch (10/15/04)               ____ x $25 = $______
                     Number of persons for Dinner (10/15/04)              ____ x $30 = $______
                     Number of persons for Lunch (10/16/04)               ____ x $25 = $______
   TOTAL                                                                               $______

      Make Check Payable to CORA. Fax registration form and copy of check to (703) 356-1568, then mail them to
                                          CORA by October 10, 2004.

                  Westpark Hotel, 8401 Westpark Drive, McLean VA 22102, Tel. (703) 734-2800
   Make room reservations and payment arrangements directly with the hotel. Ask for “CORA” rate $109.00 (Oct.14); $74.00
   (Oct 15-16 each) + tax per night -single or double (rooms guaranteed to Oct. 1). Low cost airlines: Spirit Air, Independence
                                      Air, AirTran, Southwest, Jet Blue, Ted. Reserve early!

    CORA: Tel. (703)-356-2280  Fax: (703) 356-1568  E-mail: romanians@aol.com  Web: www.romanianamericans.org
CORA Newsletter   4
CORA Newsletter        5


     Romania Joins NATO                          Romania was represented by its Prime             CORA Meets with New
   Celebrations Held at White                    Minister, Adrian Năstase. Noting that            Ambassador to Romania
                                                 NATO is strengthened by the                            continued from page one
   House and Corcoran Gallery                    admission of the seven new member
                                                 states, President Bush emphasized the       Ambassador Crouch is a “political
 The flags of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania,        historical significance of the admission    appointee”, selected by President Bush.
 Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria and                 of the new members to NATO: “As             CORA representatives met privately with
 Slovenia were raised on April 2nd at            witness to some of the great crimes of      the Ambassador and discussed about
 NATO Headquarters in Brussels,                  the last century, our new members           political corruption, U.S. investment,
 Belgium, marking the admission of these         bring moral clarity to the purposes of      adoption and other interests important to
 countries to NATO. The number of                the Alliance. They understand our           Romanian-Americans and the U.S.
 NATO members was thus increased to              cause in Afghanistan and in Iraq,
 26. Their admission became official             because tyranny for them is still a fresh   During his Senate Confirmation Hearing
 earlier in the week in Washington on            memory. These nations know that when        on April 22, 2004, Senator Joseph Biden
 March 29, 2004 when the Prime                   great democracies fail to confront          asked several questions of Ambassador-
 Ministers of the seven new member               danger, far worse peril can follow.”        candidate Crouch. Questions touched on
 states presented the protocols of                                                           the Ambassador’s feelings about the
 accession to the United States Secretary        Other participants at the ceremony          importance of the role of government in
 of State, Colin Powell.                         included Vice President Dick Cheney,        the lives of Americans, his involvement in
                                                 Secretary    of     Defense    Donald       the formulation of Iraq policy and his
                                                 Rumsfeld, National Security Advisor         involvement in the Defense Department’s
                                                 Condoleeza Rice, as well as Senators        controversial Office of Special Plans.
                                                 John Warner and Majority Leader Bill
                                                 Frist. The Prime Ministers of Croatia,      A reception, honoring Ambassador Crouch,
                                                 Macedonia      and     Albania   also       was hosted by Romanian Ambassador,
                                                 participated in the White House             Sorin Ducaru. He was introduced by
                                                 ceremony,     representing   countries      Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld,
                                                 awaiting admission to NATO at some          and described in very favorable terms.
                                                 future date.                                Among the attendees were Ambassadors
                                                                                             Funderburk, Moses and Rosapepe. 
                                                 Following the White House event, a          _________________________________
     President Bush and Prime Minister Năstase
 Welcoming ceremony for the new NATO members     news conference with the Prime
                               The White House   Ministers was held at the National                Victims of Communism
                                                 Press Club.        Celebrations were              Memorial Foundation
 CORA requested a meeting between the            concluded with a gala reception at the                    Status Report
 Romanian Prime Minister and leaders of          Corcoran    Gallery     of    Art    in
 the Romanian American community. It             Washington, DC. The Central and East        Jay Katzen, President of the Foundation, was
 was held early in the day, on March 29th.       European Coalition (CEEC), of which         appointed by President Bush to a major
 Armand Scala, CORA President,                   CORA is a member, representing 18           position in the U.S. Peace Corp, and has left
 moderated the meeting. Topics covered           national organizations and 13 ethnic        the Foundation’s leadership. Congratulations
 included restitution of properties,             communities in the U.S. cooperated          to Jay, the Foundation thanks you.
 international adoptions, the investment         with the embassies of the new NATO
 environment in Romania and corruption.                                                      Since October of last year, approximately
                                                 member states in organizing the event.
 Questions and answers “off the record”                                                      $200,000 has been raised for the purpose of
 occurred. Archbishops Nathaniel and                                                         dedicating the Victims of Communism
                                                 Secretary     of    Defense,     Donald
 Nicolae, among other members of                                                             Memorial in 2004. Twelve Romanian-
                                                 Rumsfeld, delivered the keynote
 CORA’s Board, were in attendance.                                                           American entities committed themselves to
                                                 address at the reception, at which there
                                                                                             the goal of raising $25,000 (a complete list
                                                 were some 1000 participants. The
 The seven Prime Ministers of the new                                                        appears in our last newsletter). Of these, the
                                                 Premiers of the “Vilnius 10” countries,
 member states attended a formal                                                             Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America
                                                 along with other delegation members
 ceremony at the White House on March                                                        and CORA have fulfilled their commitment.
                                                 and representatives of the CEEC and
 29th where they were received by                                                            Those remaining are urged to move quickly
                                                 CORA joined Secretary Rumsfeld on
 President George W. Bush, members of                                                        to honor their pledge. The Foundation is
                                                 the marble staircase in the grand hall of
 his Cabinet and Congress, the Joint                                                         waiting for the “matching” funds”. A special
                                                 the Gallery.
 Chiefs of Staff and other officials and                                                     thanks is offered to the Iuliu Maniu Society
 dignitaries. Among those participating                                                      and Mihai Popovici of Texas, for their
                                                 CORA        has     supported    NATO
 was NATO Secretary General, Jaap de                                                         unsolicited and generous support. Hearings,
                                                 enlargement’s inclusion of Romania,
 Hoop Scheffer, who greeted some two                                                         etc. will begin on July 29th having to do with
                                                 and warmly welcomes it.          CORA
 thousand participants attending the                                                         public participation on the design and
                                                 expresses its gratitude to all Romanian
 White House ceremony of the South                                                           location of the memorial. It is anticipated
                                                 Americans who worked for Romania’s
 lawn of the White House.                                                                    that construction will be completed by July
                                                 inclusion in NATO. 
                                                                                             or August of 2005. 
CORA Newsletter        6


    Senior Romania Working                          RACC Leadership Council                      The attending chapter presidents presented
  Group Sponsored by CSIS and                          Meeting Summary                           reports on plans for their chapters. Gabe
                                                               June 30, 2004                     Ivănescu noted plans to organize a
             RRBC                                                                                membership development conference in
                                                 The Romanian-American Chamber of                conjunction with the July visit of Prime
 Hosted by the Center for Strategic and                                                          Minister Năstase to Washington. Gabe
 International Studies and the Romanian          Commerce Leadership Council met in
                                                 New York on June 30, 2004.                      emphasized the topics of investment and
 Radio Broadcasting Corporation, this                                                            outsourcing as a key theme for the chapter
 working group was established to closely        Membership in the Leadership Council
                                                 consists of the officers, Corporate             activities and the July meeting.
 examine how a “strategic partnership” can
 be developed between the U.S. and               Council, Chapter Presidents and
                                                 Managing Director.                              Len Judes, newly appointed representative
 Romania. It will examine the security and                                                       of the RACC in Romania, recognized the
 political challenges facing both countries in                                                   need to clearly differentiate RACC from the
 the years ahead. Romania’s relations with       Attendees included: Mark Meyer –
                                                 Chairman; Jay McCrensky - Managing              AMCHAM in Bucharest. RACC would
 the EU and the U.S. must be assessed.                                                           complement the AMCHAM, an association
                                                 Director; Marian Pârjol - Deputy Consul
                                                 General, NY; Gabe Ivănescu -                    of American companies and executives in
 The agenda of the first meeting on April                                                        Bucharest, as an association serving
 27, 2004 included, but was not limited to,      President, Washington Chapter; Len
                                                 Judes – President, Bucharest Chapter;           primarily Romanian companies with
 the following: NATO expansion, EU                                                               commercial ties to American companies.
 enlargement, international terrorist threats,   Richard      Ornitz     –     Chairman,
                                                 Infrastructure Council; Armand Scala -          RACC will provide complementary
 cross-border organized crime, Black Sea                                                         memberships to AMCHAM members and
 security, regional stability, Russian           Executive Committee; Relu Stan -
                                                 President, Chicago Chapter; Elias               coordinate/cosponsor all activities in
 assertiveness, Moldova and Ukraine.                                                             Romania.
                                                 Wexler - President, New York Chapter;
 Among a prestigious group of attendees          Ioan Dahman - Corporate Council;
                                                 David Kahan - Corporate Council;                Relu Stan, newly appointed president of
 were:    Sorin    Ducaru,    Romanian                                                           the Chicago chapter, is organizing his
 Ambassador to the U.S; Armand Scala,            Daniela Fenick – RACC; Maja Dragic -
                                                 Coudert Brothers. Not present: Svetlana         steering committee and may sponsor a
 CORA; Alex Şerban; Eliot Sorel, MD;                                                             kick off event in the fall, possibly in
 and Vladimir Tismăneanu, PhD. The               Schreiber, President, Cleveland Chapter;
                                                 Michael Costache, President, LA                 conjunction with a visiting delegation of
 next meeting is scheduled for mid-                                                              Romanian companies or visiting high
 October, in Washington, DC.                    Chapter; George Svedu, President,
                                                 Philadelphia Chapter.                           level Romanian official.
 _________________________________
                                                 In the introductory general discussion,         Daniela Fenick reported on ground work
       Restitution of Religious                                                                  she is performing as follow up to an idea
                                                 lead by Armand Scala, the participants
       Properties in Romania                     shared perspectives on key benefits the         ventured by Cleveland Chapter President,
            continued from page one
                                                 RACC could provide that are beyond              Svetlana Schreiber to establish an RACC
                                                 current programs and services, particularly     mediation and arbitration service. On the
 Some in the audience suggested that the                                                         mediation front she has made significant
                                                 benefits through the new chapters.
 Church’s problems with the government                                                           progress by recruiting the interest and
                                                 Enhanced networking, direct advice, and
 with regard to property restitution is                                                          support of a leading mediation expert,
                                                 credibility were major themes.
 little, or no, different from those                                                             Mr. Charles (Chips) Lickson, who stands
 experienced by many others.                                                                     ready to offer and train mediators.
                                                 Richard Ornitz suggested that the RACC
                                                 establish, develop and manage a new seed
 A summary of a press release issued by                                                          Ioan Dahman noted the damage to the
                                                 capital investment fund to assist start up
 the Orthodox Synod of Timişoara in                                                              RACC reputation that was brought to his
                                                 and emerging Romanian-American joint
 2002 was presented. It concerned the                                                            attention in Romania from unauthorized
                                                 ventures. The concept met with general
 experience of the Uniate (Catholic) and                                                         use of confusingly similar name by an
                                                 approval and interest by the participants.
 Orthodox Faithful with regard to                                                                unaffiliated entrepreneur in Oregon.
                                                 Richard agreed to follow up by mapping
 properties. In general, it concluded that                                                       Steps have been taken by the RACC to
                                                 out the concept and identifying possible
 Orthodox Christians were forced to                                                              enjoin the Oregon company from using
                                                 sources of investment capital to initiate the
 become Catholic in 1700. In 1948,                                                               the name Romanian-American Chamber
                                                 fund. The fund might be divided into such
 forced by the Communist government,                                                             of Commerce. Ioan also reported on
                                                 specialty funds as Romanian Private
 the Catholic Christians essentially were                                                        plans     for     a    Sacramento/Northern
                                                 Infrastructure, Import - Export, and Real
 forced to return to Orthodoxy.                                                                  California chapter if there is enough
                                                 Estate.
 Approximately 1,600,000 returned to                                                             interest for a steering committee.
 Orthodoxy in that year. Today,
                                                 Elias Wexler suggested that the RACC
 approximately       250,000       declare                                                       For questions or expression of interest in
                                                 add a resume exchange capability on the
 themselves Catholic. That press release                                                         becoming a chapter president or steering
                                                 RACC Web site, perhaps as a part of the
 can be found on the CORA website                                                                committee member please contact Jay
                                                 Opportunity Bulletin Board. He agreed
 under “Orthodox Synod of Timişoara                                                              McCrensky at (301) 656-9022 or at
                                                 to coordinate the resume submission and
 2002.”                                         inquiry process.                                jmccrensky@aol.com. 
CORA Newsletter       7


                                New Adoption Law                                                   For the Children - SOS
                          International Adoption Procedures                                 For the Children – SOS is an organization
                                 Chapter IV / Section 1                                     composed of adoptive parents and concerned
                                   General provisions                                       parties who are united in their concern for the
                                                                                            welfare of orphaned Romanian children, and
 Art. 39. – The international adoption of the child whose domicile is in Romania may        orphaned children in Europe who will now
 only be approved in case the adopter or one of the spouses in the adopting family          be unfairly and seriously impacted by the
 who have the domicile abroad is the grandparent of the child for whom the petition         recently signed Romanian government
 for internal adoption initiation has been approved.                                        legislation banning international adoption
                                                                                            with the exception being biological
 Art. 40. – (1) The petition for adoption approval is forwarded by the Office to the        grandparents. With full understanding of
 court of law.                                                                              Romania’s current position with European
 (2) The court will then rule, in accordance with the present law, only after analyzing     Union negotiations, For the Children - SOS
 the department’s report concerning the existence of any similar petitions from             is profoundly concerned by the recent
 relatives up to the 4th degree, who have the domicile in Romania.                          proclamations by Romania's EU rapporteur
                                                                                            to enforce this legislation on other countries
 Art. 41. – International adoption has the outcomes stipulated under art. 50-53 and         that currently allow international adoption.
 infers the transfer of the child to the territory of the receiving state, following the    For the Children - SOS will continue to
 approval of the adoption by the Romanian court of law.                                     lobby the American and Romanian
                                                                                            governments to allow adoptions that were
 Art. 42. – International adoption, in case the adoptee have the domicile abroad, and       pending at the time the legislation was signed
 the adopter or the adopting family have the domicile in Romania, is subject to the         to be processed, and for revisions in the laws
 provisions stipulated under art. 30 – 33 of Law no. 105/1992 on regulating the             to again allow inter-country adoption. Our
 private international law relations.                                                      organization will also continue to lobby the
                                                                                            EU government to respect the Hague Treaty,
                                                                                            the Congressional Coalition on Adoption,
    Romania's New Adoption                   the lives of these children, but saddened      and UNICEF positions that all children
                                             that their childhood would likely be           deserve a permanent home and that inter-
   Laws: A Mom's Perspective                                                                country adoption is preferred over long-term
            by Allyson Schaaf                filled with memories of loneliness.
                                                                                            foster care and institutionalization. 
                                             From this experience my life was forever       ________________________________
 For the past two years I have been
 waiting for our daughter, Natasha, to       changed and my husband and I were back
 come home. As I reread the new law          in Romania eight months later to bring our        Fourth Edition of Romanian-
 signed by President Iliescu, again and      son Iain home. Our little boy's spirit              American Yellow Pages
 again, I am filled with sadness for         inspired our entire family to reach out to          “This is a great resource” - CORA
 Natasha, my family, and the orphaned        the Romanian people. Iain's Uncle sent
 children of Romania.                        over rehabilitation equipment and created                                   The     fourth
                                             a room in Orphanage #5 called "Iain's                                       edition of the
 In October 1999, my mother and I            Room." Iain's Room is available for                                              Romanian
 volunteered at Orphanage #5 in              children who require rehabilitation and/or                                        American
 Bucharest.      I'll never forget the       physical therapy. Our family will always                                    Yellow Pages
 outstretched arms of the children crying,   give back to Romania, as Romania has           is free, except for a shipping and handling
 "mama, mama" desperate for love and         given so much to us.                           charge of $2.50. This last edition has 468
 comfort. We couldn't possible give                                                         pages, social and cultural content, an
 them everything they needed during our      Because of the joy that Iain has brought       illustrated almanac of Romania (in color
 visit, but we did bring 93 boxes filled     to our family, we began the process to         and black and white) and a chapter on
 with bedding, toys, clothing and            adopt Natasha. Although I do not know          business opportunities in Romania. There
 furniture. Our goal was to make this        when I will bring our daughter home, I         are over 6000 listings of government and
 institution more like a home for            will continue to meet with politicians,        private institutions and businesses in
 hundreds of abandoned children. We          government officials and the media. It is      Romania and America in this last edition.
 worked endless hours and surpassed our      crucial that the Romanian government           The Pages were published by the Center
 own expectations. Our true joy came         honor their commitment to the placement        Focus Publishing, a department of
 from watching the children in their new     of children worldwide. I will strive for       Romanian American Network, publisher
 beds with handmade quilts and seeing        this because I know firsthand what             Steven Bonică. To order your copy please
 them play with toys they never knew         Natasha's fate will be if I do not speak for   contact the Center Focus Publishing directly
 existed.                                    her and the other thousands of voiceless       at 7847 North Caldwell Avenue, Niles, IL
                                             children. I am not willing to accept that      60714, Tel: (847) 663-0950, Fax: (847) 663-
 My Mom and I left Bucharest knowing         Natasha's future will be anywhere but the      0960, E-mail: publisher@ameritech.net,
 that we had made a small difference in      comfort of my loving arms.                    Web: www.ro-am.net. 
CORA Newsletter       8


      The Only Lack is LOVE                    After receiving clearance to visit the            “A Visit to Romania,
        by Diane Şerban, President             baby orphanage, a young Romanian,                   May-June 2004”
         Reach to Romania, Inc.                who volunteers in various ways to                  by Alexandru Nemoianu
                                               help children, escorted us to the
 Returning from Romania on June 27,            “casa.” The director met us at the gate   In May-June 2004, I visited again
 2004, brings with it mixed emotions of        and we began the tour. It was early       Romania. The reason was to see my
 sadness and glad feelings. I have been        afternoon and the toddlers were           Mother, the few relatives and friends I
 traveling to Romania consistently since       napping after a walk in the central       still have there and to spend time in the
 1997. Reach to Romania, Inc. was              park. We peered through the window        village of my ancestors, Borlovenii-
 incorporated in 2001 to positively impact     of a room full of cute little ones        Vechi, Banat. I also did some research
 the physical, emotional, and spiritual        sprawled on their beds all in a row.      regarding sources about the Romanian-
 needs of the orphaned, abandoned, and         All 12 or 13 were very still. Then we     Americans in Romanian libraries and
 disadvantaged children of Romania.            saw another room full of the same.        archives. It was a fruitful and useful
 Visiting Romania and working with             There was also a play room with a         time. I spent time in Bucharest, Braşov
 institutionalized children is my passion.     staff member and two toddlers             and Borloveni. In other words, I had the
 Because       of   family     and   other     playing.                                  opportunity to see the Capital, an
 commitments, I visit Romania just twice                                                 important city from Transylvania (if not
 a year.                                       I asked the director how many             the most important one) and a village in
                                               children are adopted from here in a       Banat. The period coincided with the
                          This trip was        year and she said about 20%. We           local elections (for mayors).
                          quite like many      walked across the courtyard to the
                          others, working      other white building and climbed the      What I can say is that the general
                          with the 10-18       stairs. The director said, “You can go    progress is obvious. The streets are
                          yr.            old   in for just a few moments.” At the end    cleaner, the services are better and the
                          institutionalized    of the hall was a large room full of      attitude of the active people is more
                          children,      and   cribs and 26 beautiful babies. We         positive. I would not say that things are
                          yet it was very      walked softly into the room that had      perfect, but to deny it would amount to
                                  different,   large windows on one side. There          bad faith.
                          visiting a state-    were mobiles and stuffed animals in
                          run          baby    the cribs. The babies didn’t make a       The progress could be measured, among
                          orphanage with       sound. I spied one of the babies          others, through the fact that the living
 100 residents between 0-3 yrs. old. Our       standing with a two teeth grin and        standards of the population are much
 program consists of going to state-run        sparkle in his eyes. As I approached,     higher (vacations are spent by many
 institutions and providing songs, Bible       he reached towards me persistently. I     abroad; the quality of the food on the
 stories, crafts, and games. The favorite      looked at the director to ask             tables, improved, etc.).        In the
 activity that we do is Polaroid photos.       permission to hold him. She nodded        meantime, the preponderance of a
 The kids get a kick out of seeing their       and said for 2 minutes. My team           market economy took its toll. The net
 image emerge right before their eyes. A       followed suit and we were carefully       of social services diminished and the
 photo of themselves is a precious gift.       rocking and cooing as we held the         differences of income are bigger and
 This is their very own keepsake. No one       babies in our arms.                       obvious. There are people who live in
 will steel it from them or trade it for                                                 desperate poverty, especially the
 goods on the black market, it’s theirs.       As I kissed this sweet child on the       retirees who rely, as source of income,
                                               back of the head, I prayed that God       solely on their pensions. As a matter of
 This June we visited two “case de copii”      would bless him. I gently placed him      habit, however, the Romanians have a
 (orphanages) and a center for special         in the crib. As we exited, they all       certain tendency to complain more than
 needs children. The special needs center      began to cry. It broke my heart to        the situation requires.
 had two family units. It is a new facility    see his tears as we left the room. I
 funded by the EU. The director was            prayed that he would be adopted into      The population is still very interested and
 proud to show us how well the children        a loving family. I prayed that he         active in the political life but ceased to be
 have improved in just one year. Her           would not have to grow up in a            obsessed with it, a sign that the civil
 concern was that after 3 years the EU         building full of children without         society is stronger. The local elections
 support would be finished and this center     parents. I prayed that hearts would       were a defeat and a warning for the
 will need to be funded by Romania and         be turned to recognize that an            present administration and that, again, is a
 possibly NGOs.                                institution is an institution. This is    strong indication that the democracy
                                               not a place for children to grow and      works.
 Also, we had the remarkable opportunity       bloom. We have seen the results of
 to visit one of the state-run baby            the legacy of institutionalized           In conclusion, I would say that, in my
 orphanages. The team that accompanied         children. It is not a pretty picture.     opinion, Romania is moving forward and
 me consisted of two women from                Let us pray that this legacy is broken    there are strong indications it will become
 Minnesota, one lady who is of Romanian        once and for all.                        a normal European country. 
CORA Newsletter      9

 heritage, and a young college grad.
CORA Newsletter         10


   CORA Meets with Damon                            NATO Enlargement.          He felt that            Armand Scala referred to CORA’s
  Wilson, Director for Central,                     Romania’s focus now would shift to its             unsolicited proposal to USAID, which is
                                                    accession to the European Union. Mr.               focused on U.S. business participation in
     Eastern and Northern                           Scala made it known that there were                Romania.
  European Affairs, National                        sectors in Romania that required more
       Security Council                             U.S. foreign assistance, health care being         He mentioned John Klipper and his
                                                    one of them, but not the only one.                 organization, the American Romanian
         Monday, April 26, 2004                                                                        Enterprise Fund (AREF), as a possible
                                                    Mr. Wilson commented on recent US                  participant in the project. Mr. Wilson
                                                    visits by two Romanian opposition                  referred to other countries of the region
                                                    leaders, Theodor Stolojan, who visited             that have made promising economic
                                                    with Damon Wilson and Dan Fried April              transitions (i.e, Hungary, Slovakia,
                                                    20, and Emil Constantinescu, who visited           Poland, and Estonia). He singled out
                                                    with Damon Wilson on April 23. Vadim               Bulgaria as a country that is getting its
                                                    Tudor also was mentioned. Wilson sees              economic act together. Weaving this
                                                    some similarities between Romania’s                topic into his second tier of the middle
                                                    upcoming elections and the recent                  regional issues, Wilson described
                                                    Slovak elections.        He noted that             Romania as a significant country in
                                                    constituencies exist for nationalistic             Southeast Europe and declared, “We
                        Damon Wilson, Director
   Central, Eastern and Northern European Affairs
                                                    groups in both of these countries.                 want them be a leader in Southeast
                        National Security Council                                                      Europe. We want them to present
                                                    Mr. Wilson next discussed issues of                themselves as an example regionally.”
 Following initial introductions, Armand            corruption and bribery in Romania, which
 Scala expressed immediate concern over             are critical issues to tackle, especially in       The remaining few minutes of discussion
 Romania’s 2004 election year and lack of           the context of Romania’s EU candidacy.             were dedicated to the EU issue of
 viable opposition in Romania. Damon                Adrian Năstase and Mircea Geoană went              intervention in Romania’s domestic
 Wilson acknowledged the concern, but               to Brussels to address EU concerns.                affairs     of   international   adoption
 noted the strength of Romania’s                    Damon Wilson emphasized that words                 determinations. Armand remarked that
 democratic institutions and track record.          must be turned into action, and that he            the lack of certain provisions in the
 Mr. Wilson commented, “We don’t get                expects Romanian leaders to “take the              legislation is “just appalling.” The U.S.
 involved in the domestic politics of               lead” in fighting corruption within the            government has underscored the serious
 Romania [or any of these countries], but           country. Armand Scala asked that our               concerns regarding the proposed
 we share your [CORA’s] interest in a               government put pressure on Romania                 legislation. At the same time, the U.S.
 vibrant democratic society and election.”          regarding internal reform. “They respond           government is raising this issue with the
 Armand Scala followed up this                      to this pressure”, he said.                        EU to underscore to Romania that, in our
 assessment by asking about the                                                                        view, it is not U.S. vs. Europe. Tina
 involvement and participation of                                                                      Goldstone interjected that European
 National Democratic Institute (NDI) or                                                                Union Baroness Nicholson holds a
 International Republican Institute (IRI)                                                              prejudice against the Roma and their
 in the grass roots election process. Mr.                                                              potential infiltration into Central /
 Wilson had no specific information about                                                              Western Europe. She emphasized that
 the funding or planning of the National                                                               173 Romanian children who anticipated
 Democratic Institute or the International                                                             being adopted in the United States had
 Republican Institute, and could not                                                                   proceedings immobilized by the
 comment on their precise involvement at                                                               Baroness. Ms. Goldstone warned that
 this time. Mr. Scala put it on his radar                                                              the foster care remedy in Romania is an
 screen to assess for the future. Mr. Scala                                                            ill-fated, financially driven motivator in
 concluded this part of the discussion by                                Meeting with Damon Wilson     Romania. Ms. Goldstone emphasized
                                                       Gabe Ivănescu, Peter Nicholson, Damon Wilson,
 expressing CORA’s concern that                       Armand Scala, Tina Goldstone and Richard Buta    that it is imperative to Romania now that
 everyone is boarding one political party                                                              a viable political opposition in that
 (the PSD).                                         Regarding the economic situation in                country and the U.S. government should
                                                    Romania, Mr. Wilson, who began this                emphasize of democratic initiatives
 Damon Wilson informed CORA that, in                White House position in January, was               regarding Romania.
 line with U.S. government policy toward            candid. While noting the importance of
 the region, U.S. government assistance to          trade and investment to our bilateral              Armand Scala closed by asking for an
 Romania would continue to decrease.                relationship, he was less up on it, “I             update regarding the new U.S.
 According to Wilson, the U.S.                      welcome hearing your feedback.” Gabe               Ambassador’s confirmation sent to the
 government is        “graduating these             Ivănescu suggested encouraging more U.S.           Senate. We closed with CORA repeating
 countries from these programs” in                  business involvement in Romania, not just          its opposition to the decreased U.S.
 recognition of the progress achieved.              large U.S. businesses, but moderate sized          funding for Romania. 
CORA Newsletter     11

 Romania’s focus had been to prepare for   and small businesses, as well.
CORA Newsletter     12


                          The New U.S. Ambassador to Romania: Jack Dyer Crouch II
                              Dr. Jack Dyer Crouch II was until recently Associate Professor of Defense & Strategic Studies at
                              Southwest Missouri State University.

                              Dr. Crouch was confirmed by the Senate on August 1, 2001 and sworn in as Assistant Secretary
                              of Defense for International Security Policy on August 6, 2001, and served in that position until
                              October 31, 2003. He was the principal advisor to the Secretary of Defense on the formulation
                              and coordination of policy for NATO, Europe, Russia, the Central Asian Republics, the Caucuses
                              and the Balkans, nuclear forces, missile defense, technology security policy, counter-
                              proliferation, and arms control.

                              From 1993 to 2001, Dr. Crouch was Associate Professor of Defense and Strategic Studies at
                              Southwest Missouri State University in Springfield, Missouri. He is also co-founder of
                              PalmGear.com, the Internet’s leading source of Palm OS software.

  As part of his public service through Southwest Missouri State, Dr. Crouch served as a reserve deputy sheriff in Christian
  County, Missouri, and a member of a multi-county Special Response Team. He also served on the Board of Editors of
  Comparative Strategy and was a member of the Board of Advisors of the Center for Security Policy.

  From 1990 to 1992, Dr. Crouch was the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy in
  the first Bush Administration. From 1986 to 1990, he was the Military Legislative Assistant to Senator Malcolm Wallop (R-
  Wyoming) and served as the Senator’s staff designee on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

  From 1984 to 1986, he worked for the Assistant Director for Strategic Programs in the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament
  Agency and was an advisor to the U.S. Delegation on Nuclear and Space Arms Talks with the former Soviet Union.

  Dr. Crouch holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the University of Southern California. He has written on a wide
  range of defense and foreign policy issues. He lives with his wife, Kristin Crouch, and their two children, Lara and Jake, in
  McLean, Virginia. 



  Congress Of Romanian Americans
                                                                                                             Please
  1000 Gelston Circle                                                                                        place
  McLean, Virginia 22102                                                                                     stamp
  www.romanianamericans.org                                                                                   here

								
To top