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Area Handbook for Bulgaria   By:

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Eugene K. Keefe

Violeta D. Baluyut William Giloane Anne K. Long James M. Moore, Jr. Neda A. Walpole

Research completed August 1973

First Edition Published 1974

DA Pam 550 168

Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data

Keefe, Eugene K. Area handbook for Bulgaria.

"DA Pam 550 168." "One of a series of handbooks prepared by Foreign Area Studies (FAS) of the American University."

Bibliography: p. 301 316 Supt. of Docs. no.: D 101.22:550 168 1. Bulgaria. I. American University, Washington, D.C. Foreign Area Studies. II. Title.

DR90.K4 914.977 03'3 74 600028

For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office Washington, D.C. 20402 Price $5.55


This volume is one of a series of handbooks prepared by Foreign Area Studies (FAS) of The American University, designed to be useful to military and other personnel who need a convenient compilation of basic facts about the social, economic, political, and military institutions and practices of various countries. The emphasis is on objective description of the nation's present society and the kinds of possible or probable changes that might be expected in the future. The handbook seeks to present as full and as balanced an integrated exposition as limitations on space and research time permit. It was compiled from information available in openly published material. An extensive bibliography is provided to permit recourse to other published sources for more detailed information. There has been no attempt to express any specific point of view or to make policy recommendations. The contents of the handbook represent the work of the authors and FAS and do not represent the official view of the United States government.

An effort has been made to make the handbook as comprehensive as possible. It can be expected, however, that the material, interpretations, and conclusions are subject to modification in the light of new information and developments. Such corrections, additions, and suggestions for factual, interpretive, or other change as readers may have will be welcomed for use in future revisions. Comments may be addressed to:

The Director Foreign Area Studies The American University 5010 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20016


Although many changes have swept across the Eastern European communist countries, Bulgaria through the years has remained a bastion of consistency. It is a loyal military ally of the Soviet Union as a member of the Warsaw Treaty Organization (Warsaw Pact), and its economy is inextricably linked to the Soviet Union through bilateral agreements as well as through membership in the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (COMECON). Of the six Eastern European members of the Warsaw Pact, Bulgaria shares with the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) the distinction of not having contiguous borders with the Soviet Union. It is, however, important geographically because it anchors the southeastern sector of the alliance and borders two member states of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Greece and Turkey.

The authors of the Area Handbook for Bulgaria have attempted to describe, comprehensively and objectively, the workings of the economic, political, social, and military systems dominant in the country in the early 1970s as those systems have developed in the post World War II period. Despite the concentration on the communist era, important historical factors are referred to wherever necessary for understanding the modern scene, and a historical chapter is included to provide the proper setting for the modern state.

The spelling of place names conforms to the transliteration system used by the United States Board on Geographic Names. The use of abbreviations, acronyms, and foreign terms has been held to a minimum. The one abbreviation that necessarily appears throughout the work is BKP for Bulgarian Communist Party (Bulgarska Komunisticheska Partiya)... Continue reading book >>

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