Berlin: Odesa committee for saving of Bessarabia, 1922. Item #1931
187 pp. 26x17 cm. Original printed wrappers. Bits of spine from the top and bottom are missing. Partly uncut. Very good condition for such fragile edition.
First and only edition. On the title page ‘as a manuscript’ stated.
Bessarabia, which is now spread across Moldavia and Ukraine, in 20th century was a part of Russian Empire as ‘Besarabskaya Guberniya’. Romanian troops entered Bessarabia back
in December 1917, following the order of the commander of the Romanian Front, White General Shcherbachev, to protect warehouses and roads and restore order. The advance of the Romanian troops in Bessarabia met with an armed rebuff from the retreating Bolshevik units. On March 27, 1918, during the intervention, Sfatul Tarii (the temporary proto-parliament) voted on the unification of Bessarabia with Romania. The vote resulted in 86 in favor, 3 against, and 36 abstentions, with most of the representatives from the German, Bulgarian, and Gagauz minorities choosing to abstain. Tsyganko, the representative of the peasant faction, and Grekulov, the representative of the Russian Cultural League, expressed that the issue of unification should be determined through a popular referendum. Following the voting outcome, Bessarabia became part of Greater Romania with autonomous rights. The annexation of Transylvania, Bukovina, and Bessarabia by Romania was legislated on December 29, 1919. As a result of this new regime, approximately 300,000 individuals, accounting for 12% of the population, fled Bessarabia over the span of ten years, seeking refuge in Ukraine, Russia, America, and various Western European countries.
On October 28, 1920, a treaty known as the Paris Protocol was signed by Great Britain, France, Italy, and Japan, recognizing Romania's sovereignty over Bessarabia. The protocol stated that these countries believed the geographical, ethnographic, historical, and economic factors justified Bessarabia's incorporation into Romania.
The Soviet government consistently refused to acknowledge Romania's annexation of Bessarabia. In a note dated November 1, 1920, Russia vehemently protested against the annexation and the Paris Protocol, asserting that the agreement was made by other governments. The USSR proposed holding a plebiscite in Bessarabia during the Vienna Conference in 1924, but Romania rejected the suggestion. Between September 15 and 18, 1924, the Tatarbunar uprising, also known as the Răscoala de la Tatarbunar in Romanian and the Ukrainian Tatarbunar rebellion, erupted in Southern Bessarabia. This armed peasant uprising, led by the Bolshevik Party, aimed to challenge the Romanian authorities but was brutally suppressed by Romanian troops. This book, published by Odessa committee for saving of Bessarabia in Berlin is an absolutely anonymous but candid overview of the events in 1919-1921 that led to the separation of the Bessarabia from Russian and Ukraine.
Authors are generally hold anti-Romanian and pro-Russian views (sympathizing with the White Russian movement, not bolsheviks and not independent Ukrainian movement, for example in census given by the authors on the percentage of different nations present in Bessarabia in 1919, Ukrainians as a nation are not even listed, as well as Romanians).
Important and lengthy document, printed at the crucial time for Besarabia, concerning the territories of nowadays Chernivtsy, Ismail (Ukraine) and Moldova.
Rare. According to worldcat only Stanford has the physical copy of this edition among US libraries.