Bulgaria during the Second World War by Marshall Lee Miller

By Marshall Lee Miller

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On the first day of the campaign, six RAF Wellington bombers attacked the marshaling yards at Sofia, and a group of Blen­ heim bombers hit the railroad line leading from Sofia into Greece. 4 After the second attack on Sofia, there was widespread panic and a mass exodus from the city. 5 In addition, since the British raids had coincided with the presence of vulnerable amn april O O p eratio n M arita 53 munition trains in the marshaling yards, both the Bulgarians and the Germans assumed that Britain had agents in Sofia who were furnish­ ing accurate intelligence on troop and supply movements.

20 In response to these provocations, Great Britain officially severed relations with Bulgaria on March 5, 1941. ”21 When Rendel warned Filov of the implications of an alliance with Ger­ many, Filov haughtily replied that the Bulgarian government needed no advice on how to preserve its independence. 23 On March il the British Embassy staff arrived in Istanbul and pro­ ceeded to the Pera Palace Hotel. While they were waiting with their luggage in the lobby, two of the suitcases exploded, killing two diplo­ mats and wounding seven.

Rumanians were 19 percent of the population in the Southern Dobruja, Bulgarians 38 percent; in the north the comparable figures were 65 percent and 10 percent. ) The total population of the Dobruja in 1930 was 815,000, of which about half lived in the south. Spector, p. 2 19 ; Seton-Watson, H istory o f the Roum anians , p. 534. t Hungary had threatened in January 1940 to seize Transylvania if Rumania ceded land to Bulgaria (and Russia) without fighting. 4 0 , Ciano’s D iary, p. 3 3 1. T h e D o b r u j a C r is is 27 T h e P r o b le m s o f T e r r ito r ia l R e v is io n Germany and Italy, although sympathetic to Bulgaria’s claims, were concerned lest such a drastic redrawing of Balkan frontiers set the whole peninsula aflame with war.

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