Sometimes, I wonder if the name “Nastase” is secret Romanian code for “stupid as hell.”
Last week, the “journalist” Cristian Tudor Popescu (who goes by the initials CTP) was speaking on his show about the recent arrest of Mircea Beuran (🇺🇸), a “respected” doctor in Bucharest who was caught red-handed accepting a bribe of 10,000 euros.
CTP then segued into the 2012 “suicide attempt” of former Prime Minister Adrian Nastase (not to be confused with Moldova’s eternal loser, Andrei Nastase, who is no relation to Adrian) because Dr. Beuran was part of the team that “treated” Nastase in the hospital afterward.
For the record, Dr. Beuran previously served as Nastase’s Minister of Health and is a close personal friend.
CTP mocked Nastase (🇷🇴) on his show, saying (sarcastically):
[Nastase] was taken to the Floreasca hospital with a Burberry scarf around his neck to cover the “terrible” bullet wounds, and he was treated by Dr. Beuran along with the other big shot doctors on the team.
But what was wrong with Nastase? All he had was a little bird scratch on the side of his neck. That was it. And all Dr. Beuran did was reach in underneath the scarf and give him a little tickle on the chin because what else was there to do?
The only thing wrong with Nastase was that he had an advanced case of “stay out of jail” fever.
Pretty standard stuff from CTP. But apparently, Andrei Nastase was watching the show, and threatened to sue (🇷🇴) the TV channel if they did not print his response in full.
Well, they did print Nastase’s response, which includes a transcript of court testimony from a criminal case against Nastase LOL.
The following recalls the moment in which Nastase “tried to kill himself” while inside one of his luxury homes in Bucharest. The police had just come to arrest him after a court had convicted him on several counts of corruption.
Slightly edited (by me) for clarity:
The plaintiff Adrian Nastase took several books from his library and set them on the table. He then sat in a chair and invited police commissar Nicolae Costea to sit in an adjacent chair. Nastase said to him, “I apologize for involving you in this unusual event.”
Nastase then used his left hand to retrieve a revolver from underneath the seat cushion and raised it to his head in order to commit suicide.
Instantly, officer Nicolae Costea grabbed Nastase’s hand in an attempt to stop him. There was a struggle and both men rose to their feet. The officer managed to get two of the fingers on his right hand (the index and middle finger) between the hammer and the body of the pistol in order to prevent the gun from firing. But a moment later, the gun went off.
The two men continued to struggle, and finally, Officer Costea managed to snatch the gun out of Nastase’s hand and throw it to the ground. He then threw Nastase down and put handcuffs on him. Officer Costea then noticed that the shirt that Nastase was wearing was stained with blood on the upper right-hand side.
So, Nastase had the gun in his left hand, but somehow, during the struggle, he was shot on his right side.
At the time, this “suicide attempt” caused quite a sensation. Besides Officer Nicolae Costea, a second officer, Cristian Ionescu, was also present, but not in the room when the shot went off.
Here (🇷🇴) is an account based on what he saw.
Again, lightly edited (by me) for clarity:
The two officers rang the doorbell, and a few minutes later, Andrei, the former Prime Minister’s eldest son, opened the door. Adrian and Dana [Adrian’s wife] were clearly shaken, but they did nothing to try and stop the police from coming in.
“We’ve got to arrest him and take him to prison,” said the police officers once they arrived in the [house’s] elevator. Nastase looked surprised that they had arrived just five hours after the court’s ruling. “Wow, so fast,” said Nastase in an ironic tone of voice.
The police then showed him the arrest warrant. Nastase asked if he could gather a few things to take with him. Watching the family putting some of his things into a suitcase, one officer answered Nastase’s question, saying, “Yes, you can also bring some books.”
Nastase then looked up at a shelf full of books and selected a rare edition of “International Law.” He then sat down in a chair. In front of him were pictures of [Nastase] meeting with world leaders. One officer sat in a nearby chair. Nastase moved his hand towards his left pants pocket and quickly pulled out a pistol. There was a short struggle during which Nastase desperately tried to lift the gun to his head and fire.
Officer Nicolae Costea grabbed Nastase’s hand that was holding the gun in an effort to disarm him. Both men rose to their feet, and during the tussle, the gun went off. The bullet, surprisingly, struck Nastase and wounded him in the throat. Blood was spurting from him like a stuck pig.
And here’s what the first medic on the scene later said:
When I arrived, I saw Adrian Nastase standing up, handcuffed, with blood on his neck. Following standard medical procedure, I then laid the patient down on a sofa that was in the room. I then cleaned the wounds and bandaged them. I also took his vital signs. My initial diagnosis was that he had suffered multiple wounds to the right shoulder and throat.
Throughout all of his, Adrian Nastase was awake and responsive.
First aid rendered to Nasase included stanching the blood and cutting off his bloody shirt and undershirt. He was then put on a stretcher and secured so that he would not fall off. Dana [his wife] then put a scarf over his injuries so that journalists would not film him covered in blood. That was the infamous scarf.
The 400 euro Burberry scarf did, indeed, become infamous.
Nastase was transported to the Floreasca Hospital, but instead of being immediately treated by an ER doctor, his old pal Doctor Bradisteanu (a cardiac surgeon) transferred him to the plastic surgery section of the hospital and kept him there for six days.
Bradiesteanu was later charged (🇷🇴) with improper conduct and impeding the work of the police for this.
Another one of Nastase’s pals in the hospital wrote up a psychiatric report saying that Nastase was suicidal and so mentally distressed that he was unable to be taken to jail. Nastase included a portion of that psychiatric report in his reply to CTP.
But the police finally did come and arrest Nastase six days later, transporting him directly from the hospital to the Rahova prison. That same day, Nastase’s wife threatened to sue (🇷🇴) Officer Costea, the police officer who had tussled with Nastase over the gun and supposedly “saved his life.”
Nastase was sentenced to two years in jail but only spent eight months behind bars.
The Streisand Effect
Way back when all of this was fresh, I wrote an article in which I expressed the same kind of skepticism as CTP did last week.
Here are two images of Nastase being carried out of his house on the day in question:
On neither side of his shirt do you see either any wounds, any bloodstains, or any bandages underneath his shirt, making it seem highly unlikely that he received any serious injury to his shoulder.
Furthermore, while it is standard procedure for doctors to cut off the shirt of someone who has been wounded in the shoulder, it sure as hell isn’t standard procedure to let them get dressed afterward in a tight-fitting button-up business shirt. Furthermore, flexing your arm to get dressed in a shirt like that when you’ve got a fresh gunshot wound in your shoulder would’ve been incredibly painful.
Last, but certainly not least, Nastase was not operated on at all when he got to the hospital. Instead, they waited until the next morning.
It seems pretty clear that, at most, Nastase had a minor flesh wound on the side of his neck (which can bleed quite profusely). As to how he managed to get a graze on the right side of his neck when he was holding the gun in his left hand is a mystery that the almighty Romanian police have never been able to solve. If it really was a “suicide attempt,” it was a pretty incompetent one.
Nastase’s been out of power a long, long time. But it seems like he’s still as vain as always, and just had to write a five-page reply to a has-been journalist talking about the event some eight years after the fact, all in an effort to protect his “dignity.”