Corneliu Zelea Codreanu
Corneliu Zelea Codreanu (September 13th, 1899 – November 30th, 1938)—born Corneliu Zelinski and commonly known as Corneliu Codreanu—was a Romanian politician and the founder and leader of the Iron Guard (also known as the The Legion of the Archangel Michael or the Legionary Movement) a zealously anti-Communist Nationalist movement active throughout most of the interwar period. Born in Huşi to Ion Zelea Codreanu and Elizabeth née Brunner Codreanu’s father, a teacher, would later become a political figure within his son’s movement. A native of Bukovina in Austria-Hungary, Ion had originally been known as Zelinski; his wife was ethnically German. Codreanu began his career in the wake of WWI a prolific anti-Communist agitator he actively opposed the Jewish Bolshevisation of Romanian industry, agriculture and academia. He joined Iasi University in the autumn of 1920 with a rising band of Nationalist students but was expelled 2 years later after Jewish press attacks. The Council of the Law Faculty led by Professor Cuza, its Dean, along with Professors Matei Cantacuzino and Dimitrie Alexandrescu, took issue with the pronouncement of the university Senate opposed the move and announcing itself independent. Thus Codreanu was able to continue his classes and was elected president of the Association of Law Students. In the student law meetings under Codreanu’s direction students read works on the Jewish problem in Romania and abroad, on international Jewish power and the history of this problem at home and abroad They studied not only Jewish methods of fighting Europeans, but the Judaic spirit and mentality as well, and then proposing various means of fighting back and defending Romania. Codreanu’s student movement spread among universities throughout Romania. He founded the Legionary movement with growing support of the country’s intelligentsia and farming population. The movement was immediately noted for arguing that Romania was faced with a “Jewish Question” and for proclaiming that a Jewish presence thrived on uncouthness and pornography. Several times outlawed by successive Jewish occupied Romanian cabinets, his Legion assumed different names and survived in the underground. Codreanu advocated Romania’s adherence to a military and political alliance with National Socialist Germany. Eventually King Carol II ordered a brutal suppression of the Iron Guard and had Codreanu arrested on the charge of slander based on a letter Codreanu sent to the latter on March 26th, 1938. Codreanu was tried for slander and sentenced to six months in jail. Of the people to give evidence in his favour at the trial the best-known was General Ion Antonescu, who was later Conducător and Premier of Romania. While in custody the authorities indicted Codreanu for ‘sedition’, and politically organizing underage students, issuing orders inciting violence, maintaining links with foreign organizations, and organizing fire practices. Yet on November 30th it was announced that Codreanu, the Nicadori and the Decemviri had been shot after trying to flee custody the previous night. The details were revealed much later: it is most likely that the fourteen persons had been transported from their prison and executed (strangled or garrotted and shot) by the Gendarmerie around Tâncăbeşti (near Bucharest), and it was shown that their bodies had been buried in the courtyard of the Jilava prison. Their bodies were dissolved in acid, and placed under seven tons of concrete. The implication is clear since the Romanian people would oppose the lies brought against Codreanu this obstacle to the Jewish occupied Government had to be disposed of in a more immediate cover-up.