Scope and Content Note
Title: Comitetul National Roman Records,
Date (inclusive): 1945-1975
Collection number: 76104
Comitetul National Roman
27 manuscript boxes
(11.2 linear feet)
Hoover Institution Archives
Stanford, California 94305-6010
Abstract: Correspondence, memoranda, minutes of meetings, reports, financial records, printed
matter, press releases, speeches, and writings, relating to communism in Romania,
anti-communist emigre activities, the Assembly of Captive European Nations, the National
Committee for a Free Europe, and the Free Europe Committee.
Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
Collection open for research.
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[Identification of item], Comitetul National Roman Records, [Box no.], Hoover Institution
Free Europe Committee
National Committee for a Free Europe
Anti-communist movements --United States
Civil rights --Europe, Eastern
Civil rights --Romania
Romanians in foreign countries
Romania --Foreign relations --United States
Romania --Social conditions
United States --Foreign relations --Romania
Comitetul National Roman (Romanian National Committee) was the name given to the
post-World War II Romanian democratic government-in-exile.
It was organized in Washington by General Nicolae Radescu, the last constitutional
premier of Romania, under the patronage of Michael, King of Romania. The CNR was also one
of the nine organizations that comprised the Assembly of Captive European Nations.
It initially consisted of ten members, representing the three main Romanian democratic
parties of the inter-war period: the National Peasant Party, the Liberal Party, and the
Independent Socialist Party. Besides General Radescu, the other founding members were:
Cornel Bianu (Extraordinary Envoy of Iuliu Maniu to London during World War II), Nicolae
Caranfil (former Minister of Aviation), Alexandre Cretzianu (former Romanian Minister in
Ankara and initiator of secret negotiations with the Allies in Cairo in 1944), Mihail
Farcasanu (President of the Romanian Liberal Youth Organization), Grigore Gafencu (former
Foreign Minister), Grigore Niculescu Buzesti (former Foreign Minister), Augustin Popa
(former member of the Romanian Parliament), Constantin Visoianu (former Foreign Minister,
appointed at Titulescu's recommendation as a member of the General Secretariat of the
League of Nations in Geneva, ex-Minister to the Hague and Warsaw, ex-foreign policy
Counselor of Iuliu Maniu, participant in the secret negotiations with the Allies in Cairo
in 1944), Iancu Zissu (member of the Independent Socialist Party).
According to its by-laws, "the purpose of the National Romanian Committee is: a) to
represent the Romanian nation and defend its interests until the national liberation; b)
to lead through every possible means an action to liberate Romania and to reestablish
there a democratic form of government; c) to coordinate and support the welfare of all
Romanian refugees; d) to direct the cooperation of Romanians abroad to arrive at the
fulfillment of their purposes."
Mainly because of inner conflicts over the administration of the controversial fund whose
custodian Cretzianu was, and because of the alleged subsidizing of Radescu by the former
Romanian industrialist Malaxa, four of the members (Radescu, Gafencu, Farcasanu, and
Caranfil) resigned in the summer of 1950. Constantin Visoianu became the new president of
the Committee. Among the new members who occupied the places vacated were: George Assan,
Alexandre Bunescu, Dumitru Ciotori, Anton Crihan, Sabin Manuila, Mihai Rautu.
Within the committee, each member had specific political functions. Thus, C. Visoianu and
G. Gafencu were responsible for relations with the US Department of State, the UN,
foreign ambassadors, and the other Eastern European National Committees. A. Popa was
responsible for the propaganda and the editing of the CNR publications. M. Farcasanu was
responsible for the collaboration with all radio stations broadcasting in Romanian and
with the National Committee for Free Europe, as well as for all the questions pertaining
to the Romanian Orthodox Church. A. Cretzianu's activity focused on the bi-monthly
bulletin for King Michael and the coordination of CNR representatives abroad, while N.
Caranfil was responsible for the legal and material assistance to refugees.
The representatives of the CNR abroad were Virgil Veniamin (Paris), Vladimir Ionescu,
former general consul in Florence (Rome), Aurel Decei, former Press Attaché in Turkey
(Istanbul), Radu Cutzarida, former Chargé d'Affaires in Argentina and former Director of
the Treaties Department in the Foreign Office (Buenos Aires), Grigore Constantinescu,
former Minister Counselor in the UK (London), Traian Galin, former General Consul of
Romania in Lwow, Hamburg, and Bern (Bonn), Radu Arion, former Chargé d'Affaires in Greece
(Athens), Gr. Cugler (Lima), M. Giuroiu (Stockholm), Ed. Ressel (Rio de Janeiro), G.
Anastasiu (Geneva), Al. Totescu (Lisbon). All members and representatives were appointed
by King Michael.
In time, the CNR gathered data and wrote reports for both US and international officials
about the political, economic, and social conditions in the Popular Republic of Romania,
and published its findings in two newsletters
The Committee's members also lobbied for sanctions against the
Communist authorities' infringements of human rights, participated in the meetings of the
Council of Europe and the United Nations within the Assembly of Captive European Nations,
organized conferences, gave speeches and interviews, and wrote newspaper articles on
Little by little the Committee started to decrease in importance. Its main sponsor, the
National Committee for a Free Europe (also the sponsoring organization of the Assembly of
Captive European Nations and Radio Free Europe) reduced its funding starting in the
middle 1960s, because of the new American "building bridges" policy towards Eastern
Europe (see also Brutus Coste's papers in the Hoover Archives). At the beginning of the
1970s, a major scandal, which revealed that the National Committee for a Free Europe was
in fact a C.I.A.-sponsored organization (see Box 9/folder 1), led to further cuts in the
C.N.R. budget. By 1972, the Committee lacked any external financial support. Besides
funding concerns, serious communication problems with the Royal House (see Box 9/folders
4-5) led to the dissolution of the National Committee.
Scope and Content Note
The records of the Comitetul National Roman cover mainly the years 1949-1975, from its
inception until its dissolution.
Of main importance is the correspondence with Michael, King of Romania, through the
King's private secretary, General Petre-Lazar (for a more indepth view on Lazar's role in
this affair, see Jacques Vergotti's papers in the Hoover Archives, Box 1/folders 8-9).
Of special interest are the materials related to the Romanian University Institute
("Royal Foundation Carol I"). The institute was founded in 1949 by the CNR, at the
initiative of Michael, King of Romania, and included Monica Lovinescu, Virgil Ierunca and
Virgil Veniamin among its members. It started operating on January 1, 1951, aiming to
promote Romanian culture through magazines, conferences, lectures, and scholarships. The
sponsors were mainly the King, Alexandre Cretzianu, and the CNR. The funds of the last
two were nevertheless very disputable. Cretzianu was in fact a custodian named by the
last democratic Romanian government for a six million Swiss francs account designated for
émigrés affairs, who stopped financing the Foundation around 1975. On the other hand, the
CNR's funds were provided by the Free Europe Committee, which also ceased its financial
help at the beginning of 1970s. Thus, in 1974, the Foundation concluded its works and its
archives were moved to the basement of the Romanian Orthodox Church in Paris.