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The Daily Vertical: A Rebellion Below The Decks (Transcript)

The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily reflect the views of RFE/RL.

Belarusians weren't the only ones marking a centenary this past weekend.

As dozens of demonstrators were arrested in Minsk while marking the 100th anniversary of Belarus's 1918 declaration of independence, more than 10,000 people turned out in the Moldovan capital of Chisinau.

They were commemorating the 1918 unification of Romania and Bessarabia -- a former province of the Russian Empire that covers parts of present-day Moldova and Ukraine -- which took place a century ago today.

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They also called for the reunification of Romania and current-day Moldova.

And they did so in the face of fierce opposition from Moldova's pro-Moscow President Igor Dodon.

Dodon urged his supporters to stage a counterdemonstration, and then he reportedly took to Facebook and called on police to intervene to prevent violence.

Some 21 people were reported to have been arrested.

But pro-unification sentiment appears to be picking up steam in Moldova, with more than 130 municipalities already having called for unity with Romania.

This is just the latest data point in a growing trend that is largely passing under the radar.

As we focus our attention on attempts by Vladimir Putin's regime to put the Soviet Union back together again by stoking conflict in Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova, and by courting clients to do his bidding, there is something else going on.

There is a rebellion below the decks, most obviously in Ukraine and Georgia, but in Moldova and even in Belarus as well.

And this rebellion is gaining momentum.

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