Sunday , January 17 2021

Analyzes If it was not Kostov

Ivan Kostov at the premiere of the book

© Georgy Kozhuharov

Ivan Kostov at the premiere of the book

Let me simplify things as much as possible.

There is one thing that we disagree with. This is the Bulgarian transition. Some people evaluate it one way, each other. What we have agreed is that the transition is organically related to the quality of our lives; the other thing about which we have a consensus is that it is related to causing and committing injustice. Since we can not organize a court of transition – we can not judge our own life! – We demand its importance in public debates. An important part of these public debates is the memoirs of political figures who took part in the implementation of the Bulgarian transition. The most important for our public debate are, in fact, the memoirs of our most important politicians. The most important ones are Ivan Kostov.

Therefore, at the beginning of this text, I will say what is a fundamental problem in my memoirs and why I talk about memoirs, not for testimonies. The problem is that you can not be a legitimate witness and a legitimate perpetrator of the same case.

In Kostov's book, both roles – witnesses and perpetrators – interfere

For some of the transitions in which he did not participate directly, his testimony is valid, but for others, especially in the period 1997-2001, his witness assessment is necessarily "contaminated" with that of a statesman. A statesman sees no side, he makes the necessary decisions and acts. That is why the book of Kostov had to be called "Testimonies", but "Testimonies and Works".

First, a few testimonies, that is, legitimate testimonies. They cover the period 1989-1996, when Kostov was initially a financial expert in UDF, later Minister of Finance in the governments of Dimitar Popov and Filip Dimitrov, and after the resignation of Filip Dimitrov and leader of UDF. These testimonies are largely a testimony of a macroeconomic expert and have the sole goal: to adequately assess the financial position of the country. Why is this important? For without this estimate, neither the financial catastrophe that Videninov brought to Bulgaria in 1996, nor what was later done by the Kostov government itself, can not be adequately assessed.

The reconciliation of these facts must also overcome one of the most persistent myths about the Bulgarian transition: in 1991-1992, the UDF government destroyed the Bulgarian economy, and especially Bulgarian agriculture. Kostov's information is eloquent: our economy is seriously damaged at the end of socialism, and the attempt to reform during the time of Philip Dimitrov leads to stabilization. Kostov correctly delivers the data and they are exactly what they are. There is no need for interpretation.

Our economy faces de facto bankruptcy that is delayed. With a moratorium on external debt, introduced by Lukanov's government, bankruptcy is now real.

But why do people not only believe in these myths, but support them?

Do not they know the facts? They do not believe because they are naive, but because our estimation of life is not formed exclusively by economic facts. At the end of socialism, not only is the economy undermined, it is broken even more seriously: the ability of the average person to react to changes in reality and appropriately evaluate it. This ability, however, has not been restored simply by supplying economic data; restores moral and psychological facts, describing the ethical and cognitive excesses of the transition. With these facts, Kostov does not want to be involved.

Now for the next role – an actor and a statesman. When you testify about things you have already done, your opportunities are two. The first is to talk away from you – like someone else. This is what the historian of objective historical science, Thucydides, creates when he describes his role as a general in the Athenian army during the Peloponnesian War. The other option is to talk, conversely, with a full description of your role – with everything you've seen, felt and understood. Speak without talking about your strengths and weaknesses. But then testimony changes and becomes recognition. So he spoke one of the samples in his diary, followed by Kostov – Mark Aurelius.

Kostov, however, does not talk about his role as a statesman and prime minister
neither confessional nor distant

These pages of his book, otherwise beautifully written, are essentially rhetorical. Facts are made when it comes to economics and geopolitics, but when it comes to other topics – for example, the role of organized crime in sabotaging reform or corruption in high officials – the facts disappear. Kostov, however, gives an explanation: he will not have the job to talk about matters that are in the jurisdiction of the court. The same court, who is rightly estimated in many places in his book to be ineffective.

The assessment of this period, during which Kostov is leading the country, is too curious. On the one hand, there are undeniable macroeconomic and geopolitical achievements of his rule, and on the other hand, the assessment that divides him that nothing has happened. Reforms have slowed down; that when they were to occur, they were prevented by many factors; that the results they produced are not unequivocal.

Of course, who is responsible for this discrepancy? Dear Kostov, he first pointed out. As he himself said, he was convincing and lacked control, without purely political and managerial preparation, he was afraid of his family. These things are human, normal, and the reader naturally sympathizes.

However, there is another reason for the failure of the reforms. They are placed at the forefront and in a special way transfer the responsibility of the Prime Minister. Among them, the most important and commented are the following: lack of will to reform in its partners; replacing this will with retropropies, that is, the belief that time can automatically return as Communism does not exist at all; the lack of readiness for reform in the societies themselves, and more precisely the unwillingness to pay their price; a strong opposition from the former communists and the KPS led by the KSU; ultimately organized crime with a huge influence on political figures.

For some of these reasons, I agree with some of them and do not even seem to be offensive. I agree, for example, with a lack of will for individuals in the blue party and with retro-tropical experiments – for example, in an attempt to restore the old parties that existed until 1945. What I disagree with is the lack of support for reforms by the public. I do not think that in 1997, one of the millions of UDF voters expected anything other than reform. Something apart from taking the country in a radically different direction.

In fact, it's not as important as Kostov to formulate these reasons for the failure of reforms, but how it relates to them. For him, the reason is not a series of facts that produce other facts, but a strong explanation that exists. Therefore, when it comes to the ubiquitous DS or the organization of the Bulgarian mafia, the disclosure of facts is abruptly falling. Kostov does not share the information he holds as prime minister; relies on the magic of words. In words like "mafia" and "organized crime". They need to talk to the reader about themselves.

Therefore, in those parts, his book ceases to be true testimony. Since he is already referring to the reader not as an interlocutor or judge of works, but as a worshiper.

Writing is no longer focused on common sense, but in the feelings. Unfortunately!

Unfortunately, because that's Kostov's power: to speak boldly and openly to the Civil Intelligence Service

The one who can talk to the Civil Intelligence Court, who has the power to wake him up and put him in a difficult position, should not applaud the admirers or hate the antiphine. Who is the same.

And finally, the answer to both groups – Kostov's fans and antiphone. You will say, "If it was not Kostov, there will be no" and you will finish praising or extorting it. Narrating also in Kostov: if Kostov was not, he would be one more. But it was Kostov.

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