December 8, 2022 22:19:41



General Stefan Gusa » Military career

One of the most valued military journalists - col. George Basil – suggestively described the seven most difficult days of General Gusa. Among other things, he emphasized: "During the 54 years that General Stefan Gusa gathered with hard work in an exceptional destiny, few days (seven) have propelled him in the Romanian history. Between the 17th and the 23rd of December, 1989 he was forced to take a decisions of great importance that had no precedent in the country, the army and his own life. The country and the army had boundless love for him. For them has he  risked his life in each of these seven days, in a game of Russian roulette . In December 17th, when he arrived in Timisoara, there were gun fires. Who initiated the situation and why were these events taking place still remains a mystery that the history should unfold. But he arrived, however, in time, to stop what was planned to become a massacre.
Between the anger of a dying regime and the rage of the crowd in the streets, his thought separated the eternity of the country from the interests of his temporary autocrat. <<We avoided a disaster - he told me - recovering the tanks from the hands of the insurgents from Timisoara, but we didn’t execute the orders of repression, and we didn’t  arrest those in the Opera House.
In December 20th he went to "Elba". God and his peasant spirit won. He ordered  the army to go back into the barracks. Timisoara was a free city in December 20th. In the evening of the 21st, as the general stated himself: <<Some rushed to take a flight to Bucharest. For a moment, I had the feeling that they wanted to make me responsible for what others had done. But Milea called me and said: "Stefan, stay there and especially take care of you!". I remained there. Only two days after, when I heard the news of his death, I felt loose and I went to Bucharest ...>>.
Then came the famous <<Night of the Generals>>. It was a question of military aid for liquidation of the mysterious terrorists. General recalls:
<<I was told that people are dying. But I thought about how many died when we had foreign troops in the country and I refused any foreign intervention. Maybe I was wrong. Maybe I was too categorical ...>>. The question is: can a man be charged when the entire history of people stands on his shoulders?
We have had several conversations with General Stefan Gusa. The last one was just before his departure to Vienna. He was seriously ill, but he asked me not to write about this. Now I consider myself released from that vow. Some journalists, who dig in dirt, jumped through the hospital window into his room, to win money from his great suffering. He had been sitting on his back and completely still during his last three months of life. But his mind and will were lucid and powerful. He put his hands together and said: <<God helped me. I feel like I don’t have power anymore. But, maybe He will give me some strengths and I will survive>>. Asked where does he think all come from, he said: <<Maybe, but I am not sure, it’s from that coffee ( the coffee served during the Night of the Generals). After I drank it I felt worse and worse. In the evening of December 30th, 1989 I met my family in Predeal and they could no recognize me. I left the hospital last year. I lied that I feel good and I left for an application. But I felt  worse and worse. I went for one week to a clinic in Paris, to have some investigations done. The medical test results came from Vienna. God, what had I done wrong? I cannot blame anyone, neither Spiroiu, nor the doctors. I forgave everyone else >>.
His lungs were burning during the last meeting. He had 40-degrees temperature, but he read what I wrote, then said: <<Wherever you go, tell them all to value the Romanian army most, tell them that I don’t feel well and that it love them. >>
The life of General Gusa was played on the Russian roulette more than once. Ceausescu, if still alive, he could have sentenced him to death. The new power could send him to prison. Those who didn’t get, in December 1989, what they expected, unleashed a virulent press campaign against him. The tabloids were feeding with his sufferings. The foreigners appreciated him. The revolutionaries  understood him. The army adulated him. Even if we want it or not, General Stefan Gusa entered into history. Many believe that he buried with him the solutions to all the enigmas in December 1989. On the contrary, I think he was a man like the others, but a man who transformed his existence into a lesson of dignity "- concludes the journalist quoted above.

"The tank has a soul. It connects to those who exploit it, drive it, wield it in battle. Somehow, every crew ties his body and soul to the fight car. The soul is forwarded to the tank. Maybe vice-a-versa, the tank inspires those who lead it. Anyway, he who loves his weapon has the right to say that his weapon has a heart. But the soul of the soldier comes on the first place and it must be respected. After all, the soldier is the soul of the army.  How much does the soul of a soldier mean and how important it is to be able to touch it…to be understood by him! The commanders who have won battles, they knew how to talk to the souls of their subordinates. It is a great art to succeed in such a thing, especially that the army cannot exist without demanding and discipline. "

General Stefan Gusa