March 15, 1965
Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Bulgaria, 'Bulgaria’s New Direction after the Meeting in March'
This document was made possible with support from MacArthur Foundation
Bulgaria’s New Direction after the Meeting in March
[To the] Ministry of Foreign Affairs:
After the 1 March “split” meeting in Moscow, the anti-Chinese dimension of the new collaborative movement between Bulgarian revisionists and Soviet revisionists seems to be gaining ground. After the publication of the meeting’s official report, day after day the international editions of the Bulgarian press have published long reflections by other countries on the outcome of the meeting. Five central committee level newspapers, including Workers Industry Newspaper each issued separate editorials fawning over the official report. The Bulgarian leaders have issued one announcement after another, both in the capital and elsewhere, directed at the party, addressing economic questions and “pressing questions about the international situation.” [Bulgarian head of state Todor] Zhivkov made long speeches on 10, 11, and 12 March, in Pleven Province, Sofia, and Plovdiv Province, addressed to both party officials and leaders in every sector.
We have heard that during his lecture to cultural figures in Sofia on 11 March, Zhivkov yet again launched venomous attacks against China. “Our leaders look down upon the principle of material incentives,” he said. “We consider spiritual incentives to be higher than material incentives. Therefore we replace material incentives with spiritual ones, and as such we rebel against socialism.” On 4 March the Veliko Tarnovo newspaper published Bulgarian politburo member [Damian] Velchev’s speech from the meeting with that region’s party, requiring that “communist party members must firmly go against the current, destroying slander and rumors.” He also spoke grandiosely against personal superstition.
On 12 and 13 March, Bulgarian students twice provoked Chinese foreign exchange students, openly defiling Chinese students’ anti-American travel in the Soviet Union, calling it “immoral behavior.” They said that we had beat up Soviet soldiers and policemen, and that for the Soviets to put security on all ambassadors to the USSR was in accordance with international law. “The CPSU is pointing the way toward harmony, but the CCP does not want harmony,” they said. “China treated [Alexei] Kosygin with pride and disrespect during his visit to Beijing…For the USSR to end open discussion of warfare is not enough for China, they demand a respectful apology and an admission of guilt…China is only feigning its support for Vietnam. Mao Zedong has said that the only thing that would draw China into combat would be an attack on its borders…All the American planes gunned down by the Vietnamese have been the result of Soviet support.” They say that the USSR’s friendly aid toward Vietnam has been blocked by China. “When aid supplies from the USSR crossed China’s borders, their transportation fee went up to ten times the cost…The USSR wants to stop its nuclear tests, but China wants to keep on testing…If the USSR had not intervened in the war in North Korea they would not have succeeded.” In addition, they also said, “China is poor. The Chinese leaders are not devoted to raising the living standards for Chinese people. They spend a ton of money on nuclear bombs. Moreover, the bomb they made was the result of help from the USSR,” etc. etc.
We have also heard that the Bulgarian delegate to the United Nations, in a recent announcement at the University of Sofia, scolded Romania for refusing to give out petrol provisions and for not daring to oppose imperialism. He emphasized that they had not said one word against the American imperialists.
On 13 and 14 March, every one of the central committee level newspapers in Bulgaria ran the “Letter to the Editor” from the Soviet foreign ministry, addressing the advisory given to our ambassadors about Chinese exchange students travelling in the USSR, and touching upon the publication in Pravda slandering Asian, African and Latin American students as well. At the same time, Bulgarian students spread rumors among our exchange students, saying that the Asian-African-Latin American traveling incident was a “conspiracy.”
Since the “split” meeting in March, these new signs are worth noting. It seems that at the present time the revisionist Bulgarian leadership is gearing up for an undercover anti-Chinese incitement. The language of these various rumors and the nature of the slander by Bulgarian students against Chinese exchange students is about the same as the anti-Chinese content involved in the revisionist Bulgarian leaders’ announcements. Yet the Bulgarian press has not divulged this fact. We reckon that following our exposure of Soviet revisionism, in the course of publicizing another anti-Chinese movement, the Bulgarian revisionists will continue to follow the Soviet revisionists toward new kinds of anti-Chinese squawking.
[Chinese] Embassy in Bulgaria
15 March 1965
The Chinese Embassy in Bulgaria reports that Bulgaria is following the "anti-Chinese" line of the Soviet Union.
The History and Public Policy Program welcomes reuse of Digital Archive materials for research and educational purposes. Some documents may be subject to copyright, which is retained by the rights holders in accordance with US and international copyright laws. When possible, rights holders have been contacted for permission to reproduce their materials.
To enquire about this document's rights status or request permission for commercial use, please contact the History and Public Policy Program at [email protected].