Romania: PM Ciucă charged with plagiarism

Romanian Prime Minister and General Nicolae Ciucă is suspected of having plagiarised parts of his doctoral thesis in military science. Ciucă declared on Tuesday that he wrote the work in accordance with the regulations in force at the time and that the ethics committee of his former university should examine the dissertation. The country's press demands further steps and points to previous cases of plagiarism.

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Striblea (RO) /

A cheat can't lead a country

Journalist Cătălin Striblea writes in his blog

“In the interest of the public, a person who has stolen the work of another cannot lead a country. President Klaus Iohannis explained this to us umpteen times when the issue was the plagiarism of the [Social Democratic] PSD. We already have a precedent - that of Victor Ponta. And more recently, that of [Digitalisation Minister Florin] Roman, who was removed from government for the same reasons. You can't have a minister who has plagiarised. ... Because a large part of Romania's people consider plagiarism to be theft.” (RO) /

Reputation also tarnished abroad

Ciucă will soon feel the consequences of the scandal across Europe, writes editor-in-chief Cristian Pantazi on

“It's only a matter of time before the foreign press writes about this scandal, as it was in the case of ex-prime minister Victor Ponta or with Western politicians who were forced to resign after similar cases. In Germany, for example, in the last decade alone three ministers have left on the same grounds: former defence minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, former family minister Franziska Giffey and former education minister Annette Schavan. How long will it be before Brussels start wondering whether a meeting with a Romanian prime minister accused of plagiarism is even acceptable?” (RO) /

Vulnerability creates dependencies

Strasbourg-based philosophy Romanian professor Ciprian Mihali explains in that the plagiarism in his country reveals a network of mutual dependencies:

“Apart from leaving Romanian universities dreadfully discredited, each new revelation is a fresh blow to the system of power that defends itself however it can. ... At the same time, it is also a confirmation of the fact that this peculiar network of powerful people is based on vulnerability, which makes everyone mutually dependent. Each member is unable to come to their own decisions, rise in the hierarchy or be deposed from the post in which the others have placed them.”