Independent deputy Nati Meir, the Israeli that made it to the Parliament from the lists of the Great Romania Party, gives details about his departure from the party. He also talked about the separation from Corneliu Vadim Tudor, with whom he was very close in the latest two years.
by MARINA CONSTANTINOIU
INTERVIEW || |
Jurnalul National: You have ended up in a conflict with the man you were referring to as one of your best friends, a few months ago? Will we get back to the "Vadim Tudor - extremist and anti-Semite" slogan?
I, as a sincere person, thought that his change was true and I didnât think he would get back to his old habits. But, when I saw he started publishing articles about the Jews, with clear anti-Semite contents, I risked everything and said I would leave the party. Well, of course they accused me of blackmail, but no such thing was there. Instead of receiving an opinion, I got the exclusion from the party in one-hour time. And I still believe that I together with Eyal Arad saw this man was changed, we thought he wanted to do great things. Now, he believes that, if he is one of the losers of the elections and if he merges with Gigi Becali, he will attract a part of the electorate, which would get back to the GRPP (Great Romania Peopleâs Party). And he is hoping for 30%. I think he has no chance.
Isnât there any chance for reconciliation? Will you ever get back in the GRPP?
Never. I have taken all the risks and, of course, when I left, I left for good. One can never leave GRPP without being called names, sworn or disparaged. I thought he wouldnât do the same with me, because I was his closest person.
Tell me what happened before the elections at the making of the lists for the Senate and for the Chamber. Did you discuss then about the financial status of your companies? Did anyone know about the swindles you are currently being accused of?
I said it once and I will repeat it now. The Tricolorul newspaper is personally made by Mr. Vadim. And the entire Romania Mare (Great Romania in English) newspaper is supervised by him. And all those articles signed "The blue-eyed boys" or "The black-eyed boys", are written by him as well. No one ever talked to me. Vadim has never threatened me he knew about any outlaw at my companies. I have passed tens of financial controls and accusations. When I got admitted in the Parliament I had to bring in a clear record, and this is what I brought. I donât remember anything else. His accusations appeared now just because I left the party. Moreover, this is how they all do.
How did you manage to - even though I believe there were a lot of pages written about your relations with Vadim Tudor - bring one of the best Israeli political strategists, Eyal Arad, to the Great Romania Party?
Eyal Arad is one of the best strategists in the entire world. In Israel, I told him I knew a person about which I believed he had been unfairly accused by press of extremism, and I proposed him to help this person. He negotiated with Vadim and reached a deal. This deal is only between his company, Arad Communications, and the GRP for which Vadim signed. I donât have anything to do with this deal and I didnât receive a penny.
Could you give us a few examples regarding the strategy Arad prepared for him? What were the advices in the campaign?
Yes, I can give an eloquent example, which I never talked about before. For the Municipal elections in Cluj, Mr. Eyal told him to go talk to Basescu and shake hands with Emil Boc, the Allianceâs candidate for the City Hall. This was supposed to take out Rus from the SDP (the Social Democratic Party). Vadim rejected this from the beginning. His and Ciontuâs idea was to go with SDP. They didnât want to hear about going with the Alliance. For them the Alliance was the DCR (the Democratic Convention in Romania). For them, the DCR is something dead. This is why they said they would go with the SDP only, they didnât want to listen any opinions. And they got where you can see them today. This is one of the examples, but there are many more.
Corneliu Vadim Tudor says Eyal Arad didnât fulfill his contractual obligations. This is true; Eyal Arad said he sealed the victory. He didnât do that. What happened, who is to blame?
Arad is a strategist and knows how to make an electoral campaign and he won many times. Mr. Vadim wanted Arad to lobby for him in America, Israel and Europe and not to take care of the electoral campaign. The contract says he is not allowed to get involved in the municipal electoral campaign. In the campaign for the 28th of November, no person could have won, not even Vadim, when staying home and writing books and newspapers and accusing the fatigue every time, that he didnât sleep at night and so on. Other leaders went to the country, including Mr. Stolojan before being replaced with Mr. Traian Basescu. So did Mr. Nastase. Vadim thought that if he signed a contract with Eyal Arad - and there are people close to him who lied to him and told him he had 30% and 35%, I donât know where they came up with these polls - he doesnât have to do anything else. We told him he has no more than 14%-16%, we knew about the polls, he was never told he passed the 18% limit. All the time he thought we didnât know, that he knew better, that he had professionals who knew the truth, that he had 30%-35% in the polls.
There is a letter that Corneliu Vadim Tudor wrote in English for Eyal Arad, in which he admits the past mistakes regarding the Jews. I found out, from an article published in the Tricolorul newspaper a few days ago, that the letter was written by the counselor of the GRP leader, Radu Toma. How did Eyal Arad take this?
This is a lie. Eyal Arad wrote this letter. I believe there was a phrase that was changed after some negotiations. As far as I know, there is nothing done without Vadim knowing about it. You have to understand that this party is owned by a person, there is nothing going on without him knowing about it. Vadim speaks English perfectly, he received the letter, didnât agree with a phrase, this was changed and the letter was sent to Arad.
A few days before the elections there were some rumors regarding a video tape you had and which would have compromised the Prime Minister at that time, Adrian Nastase. Romania Mare spoke about this tape as if it had sexual contents, which was an instrument for the electoral campaign. Yout said then that that tape was put in a safe in an Israeli bank. The real content of the tape is yet to be revealed. What was it about?
All this time, since I left GRP and Vadim, when I got to sleep at night, I have two persons whom I know I harmed. And I want to publicly apologize to them. One of them is Mr. Stolojan, to whom, if I am the reason for him getting ill, I want to apologize. I was only a counselor. Vadim wanted to become President and of course he knew all I did. I will speak about the connection to the tape for the first time now. I, together with Eyal Arad, went to Vadim and told him we had a tape and some footage with Nastase. No one ever, besides me and Eyal Arad, ever saw that tape. Not even Vadim, who asked to see it like a kid. Moreover, even after the campaign, he wrote in Romania Mare I didnât live up to my promise, that I didnât bring the tape. For this matter, I say it once more: only him thought it had sexual contents. I didnât tell it was sex. No one said it was sex. He wrote this in Romania Mare, on a Tuesday. On Wednesday morning I woke up and saw an article about it and he threatened me that if I didnât bring this tape he would have me out of the party and some other things I wonât speak about now.
I released a press statement in which I said it was true we had a tape in a safe in Israel. This is true. We also had that footage, but Eyal has been advised by several people in Israel not to make it public, because a Prime Minister would have suffered from it. If this had fallen, people should have believed this was because of the Jews. For this, if Nastase was harmed by this, I want to apologize to him.
Donât you think this is a little too late? You let Vadim Tudor to use this information and, when he said this tape had sexual contents, you didnât tell him it wasnât so.
He said he knew it had sexual contents. No one told him "no", no one told him "yes". I will give only one example: when I said I had that tape, I talked on the phone with Vadim from Israel and told him I would bring it with me on a Sunday. I cam with other 278 passengers and they stopped the flight to search for that tape. That was not the tape! It will never be published, it is destroyed, dead, the tape is over!
OK. But what was the content of this tape?
I said it and I will repeat it: I have nothing to say about it, because it is a dead issue. The tape is destroyed, what is the point in thinking about it anymore?
Translation : SORIN BALAN
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