“Refugee Apocalypse!”

BULGARIA: A look at asylum seekers’ portrayal in politics and media, the little-known practice of “external addressing” in which corrupt officials collude, and the all-too-familiar rise of fascist gangs with the state’s implicit approval

by Tsvetelina Hristova and Raya Apostolova for LeftEast

In the summer of 2013, as a mass of people was fleeing the escalating conflict in Syria, Bulgaria experienced its first “real” push at the border. Or at least this is how media outlets and commentators described the thousands who were crossing the Turkish-Bulgarian border, forgetting that the Bulgarian border in particular—and the European border in general—has been a space of much antagonism for some time.

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Bulgaria: at Fortress Europe’s Postern Gate

AntiNote: this article was the result of a recent collaboration between LeftEast and the new Balkan web portal Bilten.org, where it can be read in Serbo-Croatian.  It appeared in the original English last week on LeftEast.  Reprinted with permission.

“While the EU proclaims democracy and universal human rights, a new form of nationalism is on the rise – one that is not founded in the nation-state but is instead fortifying the wealthy core member-states by turning the periphery into an alert border zone.”

by Tsvetelina Hristova and Raya Apostolova

When Greece began construction of a wall along its border with Turkey in 2012, nationalist formations in Bulgaria voiced the same demand for the country’s southern border. Back then, this demand seemed comic at best and was ridiculed throughout the political spectrum. Two years later, a barbed-wire fence along the Turkish-Bulgarian border is a nationalist dream-come-true.

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