Gatherings on the Yugoslav-Bulgarian Border 1956–1958 Cover Image
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Сабори на југословенско-бугарској граници 1956–1958.
Gatherings on the Yugoslav-Bulgarian Border 1956–1958

Author(s): Vladimir Lj. Cvetković
Subject(s): Diplomatic history, Political history, International relations/trade, Cold-War History, Geopolitics
Published by: Institut za noviju istoriju Srbije
Keywords: Yugoslavia; Bulgaria; border gatherings; the Information Bureau emigration; the cold war;
Summary/Abstract: The tradition of organizing border gatherings (trade shows) on the Yugoslav-Bulgarian border existed in the twenties of the 20th century and represented a form of cross-border cooperation between the two countries. Being rebuilt after the Second World War, it was rapidly re- suspended after the Yugoslav conflict with Stalin and long-term blockade conducted by the Soviet Union and Eastern European countries, including Bulgaria. On the initiative of Bulgaria, the tradition was renewed in 1956, but with the clear intentions of Bulgaria to use gatherings for propaganda and political influence on the Yugoslav citizens, which Yugoslavia after the initial disorientations, was trying to parry. Gatherings that were organized on the Yugoslav-Bulgarian border in the mid-fifties of the 20th century were a true expression of the Cold War atmosphere and the Cold War mindset. They show how a relatively small and clearly limited geographical area which by definition should be a place of separation, not meeting or connecting, with the presence of a large number of people, became a training ground for ideological competition between the two ideologically and politically opposing parties. Although Yugoslavia and Bulgaria were on the way of full normalization of bilateral relations, at the time when the practice of maintaining gatherings was rebuilt, all the circumstances surrounding the organization of these meetings showed, however, how the normalization was fragile and largely superficial and insincere and how the roots of the conflict (not just ideological, but also many others, inherited from the past) were deep and lasting.

  • Page Range: 263-276
  • Page Count: 14
  • Publication Year: 2014
  • Language: Serbian