70 Years since King Michael’s Courageous Coup at Age 23

King Michael of Romania

Citation for the Legion of Merit (President Harry S. Truman, United States):

“In July and August, 1944, his Nation, under the dominance of a dictatorial regime over which the King had no control, have allied herself with the Germany aggressors, he, King Mihai I, succeeded in giving purpose, direction and inspiration to the theretofore uncoordinated internal forces of opposition to the ruling dictator.

In culmination of his efforts, on 23 August 1944, although his capitol was still dominated by Germany troops, he personally, on his own initiative, and in complete disregard for his own safety, gave the signal for a coup d’etat by ordering his palace guards to arrest the dictator and his chief ministers.”

Citation for the Order of Victory (General Secretary Joseph Stalin, Soviet Union):

“For the courageous act of decisive turning in the direction of the Romanian policy against Germany and the alliance with the Allies in a time when it was not yet set a clear defeat of Germany.”

King Michael of Romania is the sole living head of state from WWII and the sole surviving recipient of the Order of Victory.

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