100 years old Danube paddle steamer sold by the Romanian state for the price of a second hand car

"The Citadel" paddle steamer (1903) on the repair bank in Romania (Romania Libera, 28 July 2010)

In what looks like another brazen move by the corrupt Romanian officials, one of the most picturesque pieces of Romania’s heritage, the Danube paddle steamer “Cetatea” (“The Citadel”), built in 1903 and used by the then European Danube Commission, has been sold in a so-called “public” auction for Euro 7,900, practically the price of a second hand car, to a grocer, a company probably linked with the gang infested scrap iron business or other unsavoury activities that are springing now up in crisis hit Romania. The story is detailed in the today edition of the newspaper Romania Libera. This is just another heritage loss, just as the continuous destruction of the country’s architectural heritage, practically unnoticed or decried by a public that does not care about its identity after five decades of communist brain wash and subsequent two decades of Russian oligarchic style transition to a market economy. Romania’s EU membership seems to be completely ineffectual in the face of these never punished broad daylight destructions and misappropriations of important pieces of European heritage.