|See ABBREVIATIONFINDER for how BG can stand for Bulgaria.
Since 1913, the Bulgarian government had abandoned
traditional pro-Russian policy and made approximations to
Germany. Despite the victories over Serbia, the population
at the outbreak of the First World War did not agree with
the politics of the war. Ferdinand surrendered to the Allies
in 1918 and abdicated in favor of his son, Boris.
The Bulgarians were disarmed and, in addition to the loss
of territories, were forced to pay compensation. In the 1920
elections, which had reinstated the Constitution of 1878,
the popular reaction to the war led to an absolute majority
for the Agricultural Party. The government instituted
agricultural reform, which was a replica of Soviet Russia,
even though the Bulgarian communists were still being
Bulgaria joined the League of Nations and stood for a
reconciliation policy, but the lost territories in
conjunction with the pressure that came from the Bulgarian
residents abroad led to renewed tensions with the neighbors.
The peasant leader and the head of government, Aleksandur
Stamboliyski, was deposed and murdered by a conspiracy
between Macedonians and people from the Bulgarian
Aleksandur Tsankov took over the government as leader of
a party coalition that excluded liberals, communists and
peasants. Uprising and armed uprising by the opposition led
to hundreds of executions and killings. The government
decreed the state of emergency and reinforced the army in an
effort to prevent a popular uprising.
Tsankov resigned in favor of the leader of the Democratic
Party, Andrei Liapchev, in 1926, thus giving way to a more
liberal policy. The government introduced a general amnesty
and allowed the recovery of the Agricultural Party. In 1932,
Liapchev's government included members of the Democratic
Party, the Liberal Party and the Agricultural Party, in the
so-called National Bloc.
Fearing the effects of the international economic crisis
and encouraged by the country's neighbors, Boris III
supported the conservative group, Zveno's attempt to oust
Liapchev and impose a dictatorship that banned all political
parties, instituted press censorship, closed universities
and formed a right-wing extremist youth movement.
Tensions between Bulgaria and Turkey were reduced and in
1937 a peace agreement with Yugoslavia was signed. The
following year, a non-attack agreement was signed with the
Balkan Alliance, which required Bulgaria to disarm its army.
At the same time as the king was re-approaching Germany, the
Bulgarian hopes of regaining the lost areas were aroused.
Germany, in 1940, forced Romania to return the former
Bulgarian territory, which had been conquered during the
Second Balkan War. Bulgaria signed the Anti-Comintern Pact
and the German troops established bases in the Bulgarian
territory facing Greece and Yugoslavia. The Bulgarian troops
occupied, as compensation, Greek Thrace and Yugoslav
Macedonia, as well as part of Serbia.
But Bulgaria declined to declare war on the Soviet Union.
King Boris was assassinated and a new pro-German government
formed. The anti-Nazi resistance that was reinforced by the
communists led to the formation of the Patriotic Front in
1942, which included the participation of Republicans,
leftist peasants, Democrats and independents.
Paralyzed by the civil war, the German government leader
Boshilov resigned in May 1944 and was replaced by Bagrianov,
who sought to reach an agreement with the Allies while
Soviet troops advanced toward the Danube. In August,
Bulgaria declared itself neutral and decreed the disarmament
of the German troops occupying the region.