Eastern Europe Communism’s Old Men
28.04.1986 – By Frederick Painton;Kenneth W. Banta/Prague and John Kohan/East Berlin
Rumania’s Nicolae Ceaunsescu, 68, appears to be in failing health, and Gorbachev may already have a protege waiting. He could be Ion Iliescu, 56, who reportedly studied with the Soviet leader in Moscow.
Simply installing a new cast of younger leaders, however, will not necessarily mean real change in Eastern Europe. Communist bureaucracies like those currently in power are reflexively opposed to change of any kind. Thus innovation is likely to continue receiving a very cold reception in Eastern Europe.