Monday, September 12, 2011

Откровено за 9 септември/ Frankly About September the 9th

Прекрасен материал на ТВ Европа. Да сте гледали нещо такова по т.н. "национални телевизии"? / A great video by TV Evropa. Ever watched anything like that on the so called Bulgarian "national TVs"? For those who don't speak Bulgarian, here is my translation of it:

Communism Destroyed Bulgarian People

The series of communist festivals in September is going on. After Todor Zhivkov’s (the Bulgarian communist dictator) birthday on September the 7th, celebrated in his hometown Pravets, it is now the turn of September the 9th, once the official national holiday of the People’s Republic of Bulgaria, a date that marked the beginning of state communism in this country.

On September the 7th we spoke about the Zhivkov’s communist ‘heaven’, but more about the lack of freedom, the poverty, the misery which people had been forced to put up with. But Todor Zhivkov’s rule is not just this: more than the not-having, the chronic deficit, the technological lagging behind, Zhivkov’s regime did to Bulgaria harm that we can hardly ever undo.

The 80 year old pensioner and former teacher, Rangel Todorov, from the village of Gutsal, describes it very well. He says: “Communism destroyed the connection of people to the land, took away their property, tore the strong family ties and liquidated the faith in God. The constant lack and the physical and psychological repressions were intrinsic to the ‘communist heaven’. But the greatest impact is somewhere else: only after September the 9th 1944, many intelligent, and skillful Bulgarians we murdered; even bigger number of Bulgarians were broken by internment, imprisonment, sending to concentration camps, systematic torturing, depriving of work and normal life. This deprived the nation of leaders, bullied the ‘mass’ which was cruelly taught into submission and hypocrisy if they wanted to survive. Moral relativism reigned on. Good and evil was not what God had defined but what the ‘Party’ and the comrade Todor Zhivkov would say. And since communist morale is crooked, today something could be good, but on the following day it could turn into an evil.

For instance, while he was alive, Stalin was the greatest person on earth; three years after his death he turned out to be the most fierce murderer in history. Pavlik Morozov, the Russian who betrayed his father to the communists, was depicted as a positive hero. Traycho Kostov used to be a traitor but towards the end of the regime they would name streets after him, etc.

Apart from moral decay, communism did another big harm to the society. It taught Bulgarians not to work. “The state lies to us that they pay us, we lie to the state that we work”, is a famous saying from communist times, but actually is applicable to our time, too.

Bulgarians set themselves free from Turkish rule not so much thanks to the guns, as due to the persistent, heroic labor through which they got better off and were able to send their children to study abroad, created spiritual elite, who was able to lead with insight in the future. Communism destroyed this worship to labor, tore the ties to land and property, liquidated the joy of creating, and alienated man from his own true essence, instilled terror, educated generations not to take up responsibility, to live in unfreedom, believing that not the individual but some other forces make the world go round.

When finally communism collapsed, forward in the political and societal transformations were brought immoral leaders who were brought up by communism: merchants, hucksters, hypocrites, professional informers, spies, politicians, public people, journalists cast into the Todor Zhivkov’s mould…

We couldn’t find strength to go back to what kept us as a nation and state: labor, faith in God, and reverence for the all-human and family values, integrity, which doesn’t depend on profit. That’s why, 22 years since communism is allegedly gone, we keep on living in the same way, the 9th-of-September one.