The Lăncieri ("Lancers", Romanian pronunciation: [lən.tʃi'erʲ]) were a Romanian fascist paramilitary movement initially attached to the National-Christian Defense League, and following the merger on 16 July 1935 of the NCDL and the National Agrarian Party to form the National Christian Party, the Lăncieri became associated with the merged party.

Members of the group adopted a blue shirt uniform and contributed to the country's political street battles in the 1920s and 1930s, and were noted in the 1920s for their attacks on that party's main target, the Jews, as well as general disruption of university life.[1] Following the merger that formed the National Christian Party, the Lăncieri continued their wild ways, rivalling the Iron Guard (with whom they frequently clashed) in their violence and mayhem.[2] Between 1935 and 1937, the Lăncieri carried out more terrorist actions and pogroms throughout Romania than the Iron Guard.[3]

The 1937 general election campaign in particular was marred by clashes between the two fascist groups and not even the intervention of Alfred Rosenberg could unite the warring factions. Clashes between the two groups would continue, although the Lăncieri owed much of their organisation to the Iron Guard and indeed their continuing existence was as much an attempt to attract interest away from that group.[4][5]


  1. ^ Background and Precursors to the Holocaust, p. 26
  2. ^ Background and Precursors to the Holocaust, p. 26
  3. ^ Ivan T. Berend, University of California Press, 2001, Decades of Crisis: Central and Eastern Europe Before World War II, p. 337
  4. ^ Background and Precursors to the Holocaust, p. 28
  5. ^ F. Veiga, Istoria Gărzii de Fier, 1919-1941: Mistica ultranaţionalismului, Humanitas, Bucharest, 1993, pp. 245-247

External links

1937 Romanian general election

General elections were held in Romania in December 1937. The Chamber of Deputies was elected on 20 December, whilst the Senate was elected in three stages on 22, 28 and 30 December. Voting was by universal male vote, making them the last elections held before female suffrage was introduced.

The National Liberal Party remained the largest party, winning 152 of the 387 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 97 of the 112 the Senate seats. The party's unexpectedly poor showing prevented it from creating a government on its own (obtaining 40% of the vote would have automatically awarded them a large parliamentary majority), and a coalition with their arch-rivals, the second-placed National Peasants' Party or with the third-placed Iron Guard's Everything for the Country Party, was not taken in consideration. King Carol II invited the fascist Octavian Goga to form a government, though his National Christian Party finished fourth and had an avowedly anti-Semitic platform. Goga's government was formed on 29 December 1937.

Unlike all previous Romanian elections organised by partisan governments, the 1937 result did not provide the governing party—in this case, the National Liberals—with an outright majority. They were the last elections held under the nominally democratic 1923 Constitution, and the last free elections of any sort until 1990.

A. C. Cuza

Alexandru C. Cuza (November 8, 1857 – 1947), also known as A. C. Cuza, was a Romanian far-right politician.

Blue Shirts

The term "Blue Shirts", when used by itself, can refer to several organizations, mostly fascist organizations found in the 1920s and 1930s.

Carol II of Romania

Carol II (15 October 1893 – 4 April 1953) reigned as King of Romania from 8 June 1930 until his abdication on 6 September 1940.

Carol was the eldest son of Ferdinand I and became crown prince upon the death of his grand-uncle, King Carol I in 1914. He was the first of the Hohenzollern kings of Romania to be born in the country (both of his predecessors were born and grew up in Germany and only came to Romania as adults). Carol, by contrast, spoke Romanian as his first language and was the first member of the Romanian royal family to be raised in the Orthodox faith.He possessed a hedonistic personality that contributed to the controversies marring his reign, and his life was marked by numerous scandals, among them marriages to Zizi Lambrino and Princess Helen of Greece and Denmark, daughter of King Constantine I of Greece. His continued affairs with Magda Lupescu obliged him to renounce his succession rights in 1925 and leave the country. Princess Helen eventually divorced him in 1928.

King Ferdinand died in 1927 and Carol's five-year-old son ascended the throne as Michael I. Carol then returned to Romania in 1930 and replaced his son and the regency that had been in place. His reign was marked by re-alignment with Nazi Germany, adoption of anti-semitic laws and ultimately evolved into a personal dictatorship beginning in 1938. On 6 September 1940, he was forced by his Prime Minister Ion Antonescu to leave the country and withdraw abroad into exile. He was succeeded by his son Michael.

Christian terrorism

Christian terrorism comprises terrorist acts by groups or individuals who profess Christian motivations or goals. Christian terrorists justify their violent tactics through their interpretation of the Bible, in accordance with their own objectives and world view. These interpretations are typically different from those of established Christian denominations.These terrorist acts can be committed against other Christian denominations, other religions, or a secular government group, individuals or society. Christianity can also be used cynically by terrorists as a rhetorical device to achieve political or military goals.Christian terrorist groups include paramilitary organizations, cults and loose collections of people that might come together to attempt to terrorize another group. Some groups also encourage terrorist acts by unaffiliated individuals. The paramilitary groups are typically tied to ethnic and political goals as well as religious ones and many of such groups have religious beliefs at odds with conventional Christianity.

Corneliu Zelea Codreanu

Corneliu Zelea Codreanu (Romanian pronunciation: [korˈneliu ˈzele̯a koˈdre̯anu] (listen); born Corneliu Zelinski; September 13, 1899 – November 30, 1938), commonly known as Corneliu Codreanu, was a Romanian politician who was the founder and charismatic leader of the Iron Guard (also known as the Legionnaire movement), an ultranationalistic, antisemitic, Magyarophobic, and anti-gypsy organization active throughout most of the interwar period. Generally seen as the main variety of local fascism, and noted for its Romanian Orthodox-inspired revolutionary message, the Iron Guard grew into an important actor on the Romanian political stage, coming into conflict with the political establishment and democratic forces. The Legionnaires traditionally referred to Codreanu as Căpitanul ("The Captain"), and he held absolute authority over the organization until his death. He is on the list for 100 Greatest Romanians.

Codreanu, who began his career in the wake of World War I as an anticommunist and antisemitic agitator associated with A. C. Cuza and Constantin Pancu, was a co-founder of the National-Christian Defense League and assassin of the Iaşi Police prefect Constantin Manciu. Codreanu left Cuza to found a succession of far-right movements, rallying around him a growing segment of the country's intelligentsia and peasant population. Outlawed by successive Romanian cabinets on several occasions, his Legion assumed different names and survived in the underground, during which time Codreanu formally delegated leadership to Gheorghe Cantacuzino-Grănicerul. Following Codreanu's instructions, the Legion carried out assassinations of politicians it viewed as corrupt, including Prime Minister Ion G. Duca and his former associate Mihai Stelescu. Simultaneously, Corneliu Zelea Codreanu advocated Romania's adherence to a military and political alliance with Nazi Germany.

He registered his main electoral success during the 1937 suffrage, but was blocked out of power by King Carol II, who came to favor rival fascist alternatives around the National Christian Party and the National Renaissance Front. The rivalry between Codreanu and, on the other side, Carol and moderate politicians like Nicolae Iorga ended with Codreanu's imprisonment at Jilava and eventual assassination at the hands of the Gendarmerie. He was succeeded as leader by Horia Sima. In 1940, under the National Legionary State proclaimed by the Iron Guard, his killing served as the basis for violent retribution.

Corneliu Zelea Codreanu's views influenced the modern far-right. Groups claiming him as a forerunner include Noua Dreaptă and other Romanian successors of the Iron Guard, the International Third Position, and various neofascist organizations in Italy and other parts of Europe.

Fascist paramilitary

A fascist paramilitary is a fighting force - whether armed, unarmed, or merely symbolic - that is independent of regular military command and is established for the defence and advancement of a movement that adheres to the radical nationalist ideology of fascism. Since fascism is such a militarist ideology, there are very few varieties of fascism where paramilitaries do not play a central role, and some kind of paramilitary participation is almost always a basic requirement of membership in fascist movements. Fascist paramilitaries have seen action in both peacetime and wartime. Most fascist paramilitaries wear political uniforms, and many have taken their names from the colours of their uniforms.

The first fascist paramilitary was the Blackshirts of Italian Fascism led by Benito Mussolini. While many of the Blackshirts were former members of the Arditi who had fought in World War I or the Fascio of the immediate post-war years, the most direct inspiration for the first fascist paramilitary was Giuseppe Garibaldi's Redshirts.

A number of other fascist movements established paramilitaries modelled after the Italian original, most notably Nazism with its Sturmabteilung and Schutzstaffel. Others include:

in Ireland, in the 1930s, the Blueshirts under Eoin O'Duffy

the gold shirts and the Red Shirts of 1930s Mexico

the Greenshirts of Brazilian Integralism

the Heimwehr in Austria, in the 1920s and 1930s

the Legionary Greenshirts of the Romanian Iron Guard

Iron Wolf (organization)

National Union (Portugal)Several fascist movements took their cue from the Sturmabteilung rather than the Blackshirts, such as the Greyshirts in South Africa and the Silver Legion of America. Following the Axis invasion of Albania, the occupation forces formed the Albanian Militia under the Blackshirts. Several fascist paramilitaries were active in Romania including the Lăncieri.

Some fascist movements have also established paramilitary youth organizations such as the Hitler Youth or the Mocidade Portuguesa.

A number of fascist paramilitaries have been deployed in conventional warfare. For example, in the later years of World War II the Italian Blackshirts developed into the Black Brigades. Likewise, the combat wing of the Schutzstaffel, the Waffen-SS, fought in many major battles of World War II. The Einsatzgruppen were death squads active in Eastern Europe which carried out the Holocaust and other political killings. In an act of desperation, the Nazis deployed remnants of the Hitler Youth and Sturmabteilung against the Red Army in the Battle of Berlin. At the eleventh hour of the war, the Nazis laid plans for a guerrilla resistance movement they called the Werwolf. However, these plans amounted to little more than a handful of sabotages and assassinations which were ineffective.

Neo-Nazis have used the white power skinhead scene as a recruitment base for neofascist paramilitaries like Combat 18. Soccer hooliganism throughout Europe is another source of recruits. Some groups in the white supremacist wing of the militia movement in the United States can be seen as neofascist paramilitaries.

Ion Antonescu

Ion Antonescu (; Romanian: [jon antoˈnesku] (listen); June 14 [O.S. June 2] 1882 – June 1, 1946) was a Romanian soldier and authoritarian politician who, as the Prime Minister and Conducător during most of World War II, presided over two successive wartime dictatorships. After the war, he was convicted of war crimes and executed.

A Romanian Army career officer who made his name during the 1907 peasants' revolt and the World War I Romanian Campaign, the antisemitic Antonescu sympathized with the far right and fascist National Christian and Iron Guard groups for much of the interwar period. He was a military attaché to France and later Chief of the General Staff, briefly serving as Defense Minister in the National Christian cabinet of Octavian Goga as well as the subsequent First Cristea cabinet, in which he also served as Air and Marine Minister. During the late 1930s, his political stance brought him into conflict with King Carol II and led to his detainment. Antonescu nevertheless rose to political prominence during the political crisis of 1940, and established the National Legionary State, an uneasy partnership with the Iron Guard's leader Horia Sima. After entering Romania into an alliance with Nazi Germany and the Axis and ensuring Adolf Hitler's confidence, he eliminated the Guard during the Legionary Rebellion of 1941. In addition to being Prime Minister, he served as his own Foreign Minister and Defense Minister. Soon after Romania joined the Axis in Operation Barbarossa, recovering Bessarabia and Northern Bukovina, Antonescu also became Marshal of Romania.

An atypical figure among Holocaust perpetrators, Antonescu enforced policies independently responsible for the deaths of as many as 400,000 people, most of them Bessarabian, Ukrainian and Romanian Jews, as well as Romanian Romani. The regime's complicity in the Holocaust combined pogroms and mass murders such as the Odessa massacre with ethnic cleansing, systematic deportations to occupied Transnistria and widespread criminal negligence. The system in place was nevertheless characterized by singular inconsistencies, prioritizing plunder over killing, showing leniency toward most Jews in the Old Kingdom, and ultimately refusing to adopt the Final Solution as applied throughout Nazi-occupied Europe. This was made possible by the fact that Romania, as a junior ally of Nazi Germany, was able to avoid being occupied by Hitler and preserve a degree of political autonomy.

Aerial attacks on Romania by the Allies occurred in 1944 and Romanian troops suffered heavy casualties on the Eastern Front, prompting Antonescu to open peace negotiations with the Allies, ending with inconclusive results. On August 23, 1944, Michael I led a coup d'état against Antonescu, who was arrested; after a brief detention in the Soviet Union, the deposed Conducător was sent back to Romania, where he was convicted of war crimes by a People's Tribunal, sentenced to death and executed in June 1946. This was part of a series of trials that also passed sentences on his various associates, as well as his wife Maria. The judicial procedures earned much criticism for responding to the Romanian Communist Party's ideological priorities, a matter that fueled nationalist and far right attempts to have Antonescu posthumously exonerated. While these groups elevated Antonescu to the status of a national hero, his involvement in the Holocaust was officially reasserted and condemned following the 2003 Wiesel Commission report.

Kingdom of Romania under Fascism

The Kingdom of Romania was under Fascist rule for a total of six months, comprising two separate regimes headed by two different parties. First there was the National Christian Party between December 1937 and February 1938, then the Iron Guard between September 1940 and January 1941.


A lancer was a type of cavalryman who fought with a lance. Lances were used in mounted warfare by the Assyrians as early as 700 BC and subsequently by Greek, Persian, Gallic, Chinese, and Roman horsemen. The weapon was widely used in Asia and Europe during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance by armoured cavalry, before being adopted by light cavalry, particularly in Eastern Europe. In a modern context, a lancer regiment usually denotes an armoured unit.

National-Christian Defense League

The National-Christian Defense League (Romanian: Liga Apărării Național Creștine, LANC) was a far-right political party of Romania formed by A. C. Cuza.

National Agrarian Party

The National Agrarian Party (Romanian: Partidul Național-Agrar or Partidul Național-Agrarian, PNA) was a right-wing agrarian party active in Romania during the early 1930s. Established and led by poet Octavian Goga, it was originally a schism from the more moderate People's Party, espousing national conservatism, monarchism, agrarianism, antisemitism, and Germanophilia; Goga was also positively impressed by fascism, but there is disagreement in the scholarly community as to whether the PNA was itself fascist. Its antisemitic rhetoric was also contrasted by the PNA's acceptance of some Jewish members, including Tudor Vianu and Henric Streitman. The group was generally suspicious of Romania's other ethnic minorities, but in practice accepted members and external collaborators of many ethnic backgrounds, including the Romani Gheorghe A. Lăzăreanu-Lăzurică.

The PNA existed as a venue for supporting the authoritarian King, Carol II, whose political program it partly enacted. The National Agrarianist economic and social proposals included the protection of smallholders, with echoes of dirigisme and promises of debt relief. It was strongly opposed to the more left-wing National Peasants' Party, describing it as corrupt and denouncing its autonomist-regionalist tendencies. In Parliament, PNA representatives, largely inherited from the People's Party, collaborated mostly with two other anti-establishment groups: the Georgist Liberals and the Lupist Peasantists. The PNA was able to absorb some National Peasantist sections, primarily in Bucharest and Transylvania.

The PNA registered its best result nationally in the December 1933 election, when it took 4.1% of the vote. Despite its relative insignificance, its leader Goga was often perceived as a likely contender for the office of Prime Minister. The PNA had contacts in Nazi Germany, who regarded it as a political ally. While cautious about the Nazis' take on international politics, Goga traveled to Berlin in late 1933, meeting Adolf Hitler and returning as an enthusiastic admirer. Moving closer to the far-right and abandoning his own membership in the Romanian Freemasonry, Goga sought alliances with the more radical movements. The PNA tried but failed to unite with the Iron Guard and the Romanian Front, finally merging with the slightly more powerful National-Christian Defense League in July 1935.

The resulting National Christian Party (PNC) offered a venue for conservative antisemites with fascist sympathies, but was rejected by PNA moderates, as well as by some of the League's radicals. A splinter group, led by Ion Al. Vasilescu-Valjean and centered on Romanați County, continued to call itself PNA, surviving to at least 1937. Briefly serving as Prime Minister, Goga was asked to step down by Carol II, whose 1938 Constitution introduced a royal dictatorship. Goga died soon after; although the PNC was not repressed under the new regime, it suffered an internal crisis, with PNA men establishing a Union of National Awareness. Both it and other PNC factions were then absorbed by Carol's National Renaissance Front.

National Christian Party

The National Christian Party (Romanian: Partidul Național Creștin) was a radical-right authoritarian and strongly antisemitic political party in Romania active between 1935 and 1938. It was formed by a merger of Octavian Goga's National Agrarian Party and A. C. Cuza's National-Christian Defense League (LANC); a prominent member of the party was the philosopher Nichifor Crainic. Goga was chosen in December 1937 by King Carol II to form a government which included Cuza. The government lasted for only 45 days and was followed by a royal dictatorship by Carol.

National Renaissance Front

The National Renaissance Front (Romanian: Frontul Renașterii Naționale, FRN; also translated as Front of National Regeneration, Front of National Rebirth, Front of National Resurrection, or Front of National Renaissance) was a Romanian political party created by King Carol II in 1938 as the single monopoly party of government following his decision to ban all other political parties and suspend the 1923 Constitution, and the passing of the 1938 Constitution of Romania. It was the party of Prime Ministers Armand Călinescu, Gheorghe Argeșanu, Constantin Argetoianu, Gheorghe Tătărescu and Ion Gigurtu, whose regimes were associated with corporatism and antisemitism. Largely reflecting Carol's own political choices, the FRN was the last of several attempts to counter the popularity of the fascist and antisemitic Iron Guard. In mid-1940, Carol reorganized the FRN into the more radical Party of the Nation (Partidul Națiunii or Partidul Națiunei, PN), designed as a "totalitarian unity party". It effectively ceased to function the following year when the Parliament of Romania was dissolved.

National Socialist Party (Romania)

The National Socialist Party (formally Nationalist-Socialist Party of Romania; Romanian: Partidul Național-Socialist din România, PNSR) or Steel Shield (Pavăza de Oțel) was a mimetic Nazi political party, active in Romania during the early 1930s. It was led by Colonel Ștefan Tătărescu, the brother of Gheorghe Tătărescu (twice Prime Minister of Romania during that interval), and existed around the newspaper Crez Nou. One of several far-right factions competing unsuccessfully against the Iron Guard for support, the group made little headway, and existed at times as a satellite of the National-Christian Defense League.

The PNSR proposed a program of corporatism and statism, promising a basic income, full employment, and limits on capitalist profits. It was anticommunist generally, and in particular anti-Soviet, circulating the theory of Jewish Bolshevism while describing its own program as the alternative, "positive", socialism. The party also claimed for itself the banner of Christianity, which it associated with calls for social reorganization and the expulsion or segregation of Romanian Jews. Its Germanophilia and antisemitism were supplemented by shows of support for the policies of King Carol II.

The PNSR's ideological stance, exotic in its Romanian context, found favor in Nazi Germany, notably from Alfred Rosenberg. Overall, the PNSR failed in its bid to establish a pan-fascist alliance in Romania, and, despite being nativist, functioned as a magnet for Transylvanian Saxons, Bessarabia Germans, and Russian émigrés. Tătărescu was received officially by his German patrons, who also provided the PNSR with funds, but eventually dropped by them for his unpopularity and alleged corruption. In late 1933, under the antifascist Prime Minister Ion G. Duca, the party was repressed.

Tătărescu exercised some influence over his brother's government in 1934, helping to steer the country away from its traditional alliances, but failed in his attempt to obtain arms deals for Germany. Disavowed by both its Nazi backers and Gheorghe Tătărescu, the party moderated its stances, then disappeared from the political scene in July 1934. Later that decade, the Colonel was involved with the Nationalist Soldiers' Front, which borrowed the PNSR's symbols. The PNSR Saxon chapter, under Fritz Fabritius, reemerged as the German People's Party in 1935.

Nicolae Petrescu-Comnen

Nicolae Petrescu-Comnen (Romanian pronunciation: [nikoˈla.e peˈtresku komˈnen]; Gallicized as Petresco-Comnène, Petrescu-Comnène or N. P. Comnène, born Nicolae Petrescu; August 24, 1881 – December 8, 1958) was a Romanian diplomat, politician and social scientist, who served as Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Miron Cristea cabinet (between May 1938 and January 31, 1939). He debuted in France as a public lecturer and author of several books on political history, then returned to Romania as a judge and member of the University of Bucharest faculty. Comnen spent most of World War I in Switzerland, earning respect at home and abroad for his arguments in favor of nationalism, his publicizing of the Greater Romanian cause, and especially for his support of the Romanian community in Dobruja. During the Paris Peace Conference, he was dispatched to Hungary, proposing political settlements that would have made the Treaty of Trianon more palatable to Hungarian conservatives. Also noted as an eccentric who published poetry, he was often ridiculed for his claim to a Byzantine aristocratic descent from the Komnenos.

Comnen returned to serve briefly in the Romanian Assembly of Deputies, during which time he became a prominent anti-socialist. He was a National Liberal and close to that party's leadership, before embarking on a full-time diplomatic career, originally as Romania's envoy to Switzerland and to the League of Nations (1923–1927). He had a steady climb during the early interwar, with alternating missions in Weimar Germany and at the Holy See. His activity centered on debilitating Hungarian irredentism, and, progressively, on the easing of tensions between Romania and the Soviet Union. As Romania's ambassador to Nazi Germany, Comnen preserved a neutralist line, recognizing Romania's dependence on German industry while seeking to expand cooperation with France and Britain.

Comnen was assigned to lead Foreign Affairs during the early stages of King Carol II's authoritarian regime. His ministerial term was highly turbulent, overlapping with the expansion of Nazi power, Western appeasement, and a sudden deterioration of Romanian–Soviet relations. Comnen recognized the Anschluss, helped "liquidate" the Abyssinian question, and tried to obtain guarantees from Romania's hostile neighbors at Bled and Salonika. A full crisis followed the Munich Agreement, during which Comnen worked to preserve both a Czechoslovakian state and the Little Entente. He tacitly gave the Soviet Air Forces access to Romania's airspace, and refused to participate in a partition of Carpathian Ruthenia.

Comnen was ultimately deposed by Carol—allegedly, because he had questioned the king's rationale for repressing the rival Iron Guard—and replaced with Grigore Gafencu. Again dispatched to the Holy See, he was sacked by a Guardist government after Carol's downfall in 1940. He never returned home, but remained in Florence, a supporter of the Allies and agent of the Romanian National Committee. As such, Comnen worked with Gafencu in the diaspora movement against Communist Romania. Earning accolades for his new contributions as a humanitarian, he published works of recollections and studies in diplomatic history. In his last years before his death in Florence, he had turned to promoting a pan-European identity.

Octavian Goga

Octavian Goga (Romanian pronunciation: [oktaviˈan ˈɡoɡa]; 1 April 1881 – 7 May 1938) was a Romanian politician, poet, playwright, journalist, and translator.

Patriarch Miron of Romania

Miron Cristea (Romanian pronunciation: [miˈron ˈkriste̯a]; monastic name of Elie Cristea [eˈli.e]; 20 July 1868 – 6 March 1939) was an Austro-Hungarian-born Romanian cleric and politician.

A bishop in Hungarian-ruled Transylvania, Cristea was elected Metropolitan-Primate of the Orthodox Church of the newly unified Greater Romania in 1919. As the Church was raised to a rank of Patriarchate, Miron Cristea was enthroned as the first Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church in 1925.

In 1938, after Carol II banned political parties and established a royal dictatorship, he chose Cristea to be Prime Minister of Romania, a position from which he served for about a year, between 11 February 1938, and his death.


Sfarmă-Piatră (literally "Stone-Crusher" or "Rock-Breaker", named after one of the Uriași characters in Romanian folklore; Romanian pronunciation: [ˌsfarmə ˈpjatrə]) was an antisemitic daily, monthly and later weekly newspaper, published in Romania during the late 1930s and early 1940s. One in a series of publications founded by Nichifor Crainic (better known as the head of Gândirea magazine), with support from Universul editor-in-chief Stelian Popescu, it attempted to regroup the various fascist and pro-fascist movements around Crainic's "ethnocratic" principle. The editorial staff comprised a group of far right intellectuals; alongside the editor-in-chief Alexandru Gregorian, they included Ovidiu Papadima, Vintilă Horia, Dan Botta, Dragoș Protopopescu, Toma Vlădescu, and Pan M. Vizirescu. It notably hosted contributions by writers Ioan Alexandru Brătescu-Voinești, Radu Gyr and Ștefan Baciu.

Noted for its contemptuous style of journalism and its recourse to violent language, Sfarmă-Piatră launched press campaigns against various figures who advocated left-wing or centrist positions, as well as against prominent members of the Jewish-Romanian community. Among the targets of its attacks were mainstream politicians such as Constantin Argetoianu and Constantin Stere, and the well-known writers Tudor Arghezi, Eugen Lovinescu and Mihail Sadoveanu. The publication was involved in a lengthy conflict with left-wing newspapers such as Adevărul and Dimineața, as well as with two rival voices on the far right—the National Christian Party (PNC) of Octavian Goga and A. C. Cuza, and Mihail Manoilescu's Buna Vestire.

Initially adverse to King Carol II and attempting a rapprochement with the fascist Iron Guard, it came to support Carol's National Renaissance Front after 1938. During World War II, it switched its position, offering backing to the Guard's National Legionary regime and finally to that of Conducător Ion Antonescu. The 1941 edition of Sfarmă-Piatră is remembered for welcoming Operation Barbarossa and the Iași pogrom, and for circulating antisemitic canards. The paper was ultimately shut down after Antonescu's fall in 1944, and its staff either went into hiding or was prosecuted for various political crimes.

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