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Bulgaria : back to the old demons  ?


Bulgaria : Back to the Old Demons ?


Bulgarians are to elect their mayors on coming October 28th. Following Bulgaria's January 1st, 2007 accession to the European Union and the appointment of its first 18 Euro-deputies to the European Parliament, these polls will amount to a test. Therefore they will be closely monitored by European experts. Just like Romania, Bulgaria's public image does not always meet those criteria that were required for its admission in the great European family where it should ultimately hold its own. Indeed, in both countries, even if no one had any illusion on the challenge represented by the conversion of a totalitarian communist regime to a market economy democracy, the changes so far achieved are still deemed "much less than sufficient" by the European authorities. The democratic gains that Romanians and Bulgarians could legitimately look forward to are still remote. The reasons for this are perfectly well known. Some are due together to the past, still too well rooted in the local collective memory, and to a numbing bureaucracy, which should transform to give way to a modern administration. « The malfunctions found in public institutions bring about adverse effects on civil society and reveal new corruption practices. » [1] Following half a century of communism, the transition from a totalitarian and mafioso regime to democracy may seem a formidable challenge, but it can be met. While Europe can help by financing, the Romanians and Bulgarians must be prepared to pull their weight by waging a relentless struggle against the scourges that are ruining their countries: pervasive corruption, no political leadership, a political class suspected of enriching itself at the expense of sections of the population whose standard of living is sometimes just on the poverty line. Furthermore, in Bulgaria, the existence of organized crime is a sad fact that the new laws and other mechanisms implemented during the last ten years have failed to contain. This is not without consequences on the economic situation. According to assessments published this week by the World Bank, their experts think that Bulgaria will need « forty years before reaching the level of the other Western European countries » which are their partners since the start of the year ? [1] A dispatch from François de Vries (©). Brussels / Strasbourg, 26 September 2007.


« Bulgaria... a land of centuries-old civilisation, situated at the crossroads of East and West. It is said that the very first European State was created there in 681 by Khan Asparoukh. Bulgaria is the country of Orpheus and Eurydices, the homeland of the Thracians and of Dionysos. » [2]


The Treaty of Accession with Bulgaria and Romania was signed at a special ceremony held in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The signature of the Treaty of Accession by Bulgaria and Romania paved the way for the ratification procedures that formalised their membership of the Union on 1 January 2007. from left to right (back row): Solomon Passy, Bulgarian Minister for Foreign Affairs, on the left, and Meglena Kuneva, Bulgarian Minister for European Affairs from left to right (front row):


Georgi Parvanov, President of Bulgaria, on the left, and Simeon Saxe-Coburg, Prime Minister of Bulgaria. Photo © European Community.


Georgi Parvanov, President of Bulgaria (left) and Simeon Saxe-Coburg, Prime Minister


Rebuked several times by the Brussels Commission as well as by the European Parliament, « Bulgaria and Romania remain under intense scrutiny », due to their endemic corruption. In the case of Bulgaria, the situation is even more serious : in addition to corruption, which is considered as being the major national scourge, « organized crime keeps defying the rule of law ». Yet the Bulgarians have been warned : « if there is no significant change », this accession could well be « reconsidered », something nobody really wishes in Brussels as in Sofia. And the fact is that the remedies are well known !


Hans-Gert Pöttering welcomes the first Bulgarian and Romanian Euro-deputies in Strasbourg Hans-Gert Pöttering welcomes the first Bulgarian and Romanian Euro-deputies in Strasbourg. Photo © European Parliament.


Hans-Gert Pöttering welcomes the first Bulgarian and Romanian Euro-deputies in Strasbourg


In Brussels and Strasbourg, while significant improvements in the fight against corruption have been registered with satisfaction, the latter still prevails, namely in the administration, customs, agriculture and the judiciary. The main offenders are major politicians, some of whom are claiming, with incredible cynicism, the right to « make business » by taking improper advantage of their position as elected representatives.


Hans-Gert Pöttering welcomes the first Bulgarian and Romanian Euro-deputies in Strasbourg. Photo © European Community, 2005.


Jean-Claude Juncker, PM of Luxembourg welcomes Simeon Saxe-Coburg, Bulgarian PM (2005)

Between those whose political past is « tainted » i.e. who have allegedly collaborated with the former infamous State Security, "Darjavna Sigournost", as well as with the D.S. (the Bulgarian KGB ), and others who have taken advantage of the restoration of democracy to shamelessly enrich themselves, the press is not remaining inactive and is discovering the price of freedom by exposing for all to read the affairs and scandals that are sullying their country's image, as well as the efforts performed by all those who are committed to a democratic renewal.

Signature of the Treaty of Accession to the EU by Bulgaria and Romania : The Treaty of Accession with Bulgaria and Romania was signed at a special ceremony held in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The signature of the Treaty of Accession by Bulgaria and Romania paved the way for the ratification procedures that formalised their membership of the Union on 1 January 2007.


Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha, former Bulgarian Prime Minister. Photo © European Community, 2005.


Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha, former Bulgarian Prime Minister


It would be wrong to assert that the government remains inactive against all this. Several initiatives launched by the Ministry of the Interior have had encouraging results. However, the latter are deemed far too insufficient considering the extent of this cancer that is eating away the Bulgarian institutions. Political will is lacking at the State's highest level.

·         An ossified State apparatus

On September 4 this year, the independent commission tasked with investigating the links between political and administrative authorities and the D.S. published a new list of former collaborators with the communist dictatorship, among whom, « the president of the Bulgarian Republic, Gueorgui Parvanov, the president of the Turkish minority party (member of the ruling coalition), Ahmed Dogan, and the former socialist prime minister Jan Videnov. » [3] A first « lustration law » (screening law) had indeed been voted in 1992, but was abrogated three years later … Instead, « The Bulgarians have had to wait until the eve of their accession to the Union, in December 2006, to acquire a commission which is, since April, in the process of investigating the past record of public authorities. » The fact is that those latest disclosures have not even « shocked the concerned individuals » who, according to Le Monde, apparently expressed « no regrets ».


Olli Rehn, Member of the EC in charge of Enlargement and José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC presented to the EP the final monitoring report on the preparedness of Bulgaria and Romania for EU membership.

Olli Rehn, on the right, and José Manuel Barroso. Photo © European Community, 2006.


Olli Rehn, on the right, and José Manuel Barroso.

·         An alarming situation

Various official reports incriminating the system have been published : one of the most significant even goes to the extent of concluding that it is difficult to say if « corruption is the cause or the consequence of the ruined economy, in fact probably both » thus questioning any chance of seeing Bulgaria proceed one day towards economic growth. [4]


In its September 24 report, the World Bank asserts that « if productivity in Bulgaria continues to grow at 2%  per year, Bulgaria will never fully converge with the EU-25 gross domestic product per capita », and that if « Bulgaria manages to raise productivity growth to 5% per year, it is only in 2040 that Bulgaria would converge… » [1] Remaining at one third of what it is in the Union's other countries, productivity is by far insufficient, and the higher wages demanded by several sectors of the economy are pushing inflation, which in August topped 12%, even higher. The multiplication of strikes in various sectors is, in this respect, alarming. [5]


  • Corruption : a record phenomenon in Europe


« While the number of corruption cases fluctuated around tens of thousands per month in 2003, only 75 individuals have been sentenced for having misappropriated public funds or for being involved in bribery cases ». The new measures taken by the Minister of the Interior, unveiled just prior to the accession signature, are « encouraging, but very clearly insufficient ». In fact, the same report notes that « the actions taken by the State appear to have been limited to small cases, this in order to better spare the corruption prevailing at the State's highest level. » The objective consisting in reducing to 20% the amount of the Bulgarian « underground economy » before the 2007 accession seems impossible to achieve as long as mentalities will not change and the culprits will enjoy virtual impunity.


These facts are final! In another report that made its day in Strasbourg, the European Parliament's rapporteur for Bulgaria, the British deputy  Geoffrey Van Orden, had considered that  « the wedding ceremony is completed, the registry of marriages signed, the wedding gifts received, but the married couple cannot leave the church together, because we don't know what the situation is outside ». [6]


Geoffrey Van Orden, (GB) rapporteur on Bulgaria since 1999. Photo © European Parliament.


Geoffrey Van Orden, (GB) rapporteur on Bulgaria since 1999


These scourges are taken very seriously indeed in Strasbourg and Brussels. In a resolution adopted by the Euro-deputies, [7] it is said that « corruption "undermines" human rights, democratic institutions, the Rule of Law and the judiciary system. It provides leeway to organized crime and erodes confidence in democratic institutions. Corruption, which hits the poor harder, has a devastating effect on development: it entails a reduced effectiveness of aid, malnutrition, the deficiency of health care and education systems, greater risks in business and less direct foreign investment. » 


Consequently, and as early as June 14, 2006, the Euro-deputies insisted on « the need for those two countries to keep strengthening the ongoing reform of their judiciary system by increasing the judiciary power's transparency, effectiveness and impartiality, and by providing evidence of more substantial results in the fight against corruption with, in the case of Bulgaria, a particular onus on the fight against organized crime. »


Pierre Moscovici, former European Affairs Minister (FR) Photo © European Parliament.


Pierre Moscovici, former European Affairs Minister (FR)


Other European deputies such as Pierre Moscovici, who in a previous report had called upon « the Bulgarian government to intensify its efforts in the fight against organized crime », mentioning "the prevailing concern at the "brazenness" of some figures of Bulgarian organized crime, "their disdain of law and the way they challenge the State's authority ". Corruption at the highest level being « one of the other aspects discussed in the report » , the deputies are calling on « the Bulgarian government to keep up its anticorruption strategy and judiciary reform with increased efficiency in investigations and prosecution of criminal cases . The integration of the Roma, the welfare of children, psychiatric care and the agricultural system remain domains that still pose problems. The Bulgarian government is called upon to improve border control in all its aspects and to step up efforts in all the domestic market's sectors. [8]


In order to be able to join both NATO and the EU, Bulgaria launched a whole series of reforms, but the latter have proved very difficult to implement, this being due to ingrained habits and to an administration which is far from being up to its task, despite the obvious goodwill of a new generation of civil servants, unfortunately unable to overthrow what has become a virtual « law unto itself ».  


« Corruption » which is eating the country away, is deemed to have « cost more than a billion euros in 2006 » according to the Centre for the Study of Democracy (CSD). Most of this money would have been « siphoned » on European aid which, in seven years, has amounted to 11 billion euros for the sole Bulgaria. According to Ognain Chentov, the CSD president, [9] « A growing segment of the public thinks that increased political corruption has almost become institutionalized by means of networks woven around the political parties. Thus, the CSD finds that the name of the winner of an ITT is often known in advance, which leads to less participants bidding for ITT procedures. » [10] According to these experts «There is a risk that corruption relationships develop between politicians, the administration, and business circles, this in order to direct European resources towards earmarked beneficiaries". The American ambassador John Beyrle recently compared corruption to "an unofficial tax which hinders Bulgaria's social and economic development ».


Since the long-expected political cleansing process is not taking place, many Bulgarians have lost trust in their politicians. Some take advantage of their mandate and the protection it confers them to transform into « businessmen », the worst example being notoriously provided by the State's highest authorities, save for some noteworthy exceptions.


For all these reasons, the courageous combat led by the Minister of the Interior, Rumen Petkov, and the General Prosecutor, Boris Velchev, will only bear fruit if Brussels, instead of threatening, decides to act.


Disenchanted, and deeming « the dice to be loaded », the average Bulgarian does not consider any more politics as a means to achieve an actual change. This translates by a very high number of non-voters, of people who have lost any hope they could have nurtured in a break with the methods of the past. Naturally, some politicians are taking advantage of this situation, with the complicity of high flying mafiosi who have logged years of experience and, above all, who consider themselves to be above the law. In Bulgaria, votes can be bought, particularly those of the Roma.


  • A textbook case


The most striking example in this antiquated galaxy is that of an individual who is a unique case in the Bulgarian polity : Ahmed Demir Dogan, the leader of the Movement for Rights and Feedoms party which is supposed to defend the rights of the Turkish minority in Bulgaria. When 30, following the promulgation of the Turkish name-change law, he was implicated in a clandestine movement aiming at protecting the rights of the Turkish minority and sentenced to ten years in jail, but was pardoned after two years. The very recent disclosure of his collaboration with the communist political police « from 1974 to 1988 » [3] lead one to think that his motivations were perhaps not as pure as one could believe.


His statements are astounding and provocative. One can judge by the following examples : When asked, on prime time TV [11], : «You promised you would tell us how the parties get funded, this is a very interesting question. Nobody talks about that. Tell us, since you know them all ? ». Dogan answered :


« They are taking you for a ride very subtly with some donations stories.  Look, in the whole world, starting from America to Japan, each party has, let’s say, a “hoop” of companies… and I am answering now your question about the financing.  If I cannot build a house such as this one, how am I going to solve the country’s problems? If you think that I have less power than a banker, then you don’t have a real understanding of the potential of a politician.  In the last 15 years probably half of the businessmen who are above the lot, they owe it to me, or at least to my silent approval....»


Question : « That's not bad in the end…

Ahmed Dogan : « Not bad, for sure ! »


Question : « And does the political power pay back the companies in some way? » 

Ahmed Dogan : « That's true, very true indeed. »


Question : « So that's how things happen ?»

Ahmed Dogan : « That's the truth… »


Question : « So you have answered... It's actually quite simple ? »

Ahmed Dogan : « It's simple. Later, there will be projects for which you will have to find a contractor or a sub-contractor, who will be consultant … »


Question : « Why are you the only one to confess that ? »

Ahmed Dogan : « Because I have the courage … »


Question : « From the European Union will be coming between  3.9 and 5 billion euros in EU accession funds, and according to you it seems important to know through which companies this money will be distributed ? »

Ahmed Dogan : « Of course. There is no case where European funds do not entail an obligatory European company, a main contractor, even a European consulting firm.  The Bulgarian companies are somewhere as subcontractors, in third row. These 4.760 billion euros, for example, which we will receive now until 2008-2009, be assured that the framework of contracting companies is already set… But after our admission, this discrimination against Bulgarian companies will stop. »


Question : « And as from  now, we shall select our companies ourselves ? »

Ahmed Dogan : « Of course, that's natural … »


Question : « So we shall become successful businessmen and we can hope to make good business ? »

Ahmed Dogan : « You can, yes. It’s very important to know whom you will give your political support to. »


Question : « Before the elections, you promised you would settle the unpaid electricity bills of the Roma in Stolipinovo. Suppose I vote for you, I won't have to pay my electricity bills during five years ? »

Ahmed Dogan : « I will fulfil my promise. I asked the Austrian company which bought the subsidiary of Electro-distribution, Plovdiv-Burgas, in the South. I tried…I know the company, I helped this company in the past … 

  • Did Dogan goof here ?


Surely not, because all Ahmed Demir Dogan's statements in the media are similar . Let's not miss this ominous sentence : « Bulgaria's path to Europe passes through the Bosphorus ». [12] In his own party, not only does such talk shock no one, but some of his political partners are even imitating him. Such as M. Fahri who declared in Varna : « We bought the votes of 2,500 Roma in Dalgopol, 1,800 in Dolen Chiflik, more than 500 in Kamenar and Ignatievo villages and about one hundred thousand from neighbouring Turkey … » [13]

« I don't care whom I shall run the country with, whether the Right or the Left. » [14] « No need to investigate these circles » said Dogan at the 6th Conference of his party, the « Movement of Rights and Freedoms ». At the limit, « circle is a dirty word that has something to do with the political secrecy associated to the transition. » … « In Bulgaria, these "circles" have materialized five or six years ago as a counterweight for two main reasons. The first one was to adequately counterbalance the oligarchy in the country's polity. The second was due to the weariness entailed by the long wait for the so-called strategic investors, and mostly to the confirmation of  the sacred truth: God only helps those who help themselves. »

And for those  who are still nurturing  illusions, here is another one of Dogan's confidences: replying to a journalist who was considering "odd" that « as soon as the topic is "eurofunds", then these business "circles", these companies, suddenly  materialize » ... It's time « for society to shed all its illusions on the belief that the funding of electoral campaigns is ensured by the contributions of party members » [15]

Another gem : « It doesn't matter whether politicians are transparent or not, objectively the best part of themselves is out of reach of society. This is because professionalism in politics runs counter to the politician's transparency ». With a Ph.D. and such principles, Ahmed Dogan considers himself to be « untouchable ». His is a long list of statements sought by journalists and printed front page. To students, and in the presence of journalists, Dogan said, after having explained that if the Devin complex had been built, it was for his own profit : « You must surpass yourself. Think about tomorrow, not today. We are experiencing an accelerated development. I am a good example. I come from a small village, and now I am a rich man. I am a politician. I am a businessman. » [16] And what about this confession ? « Sofia is n't enough for me, I need Brussels. I need to practice politics with a span of 500 million people » [17] which he repeated at Rousse two days later. [18]


Sergeï Stanishev at the EC : Joaquín Almunia, Member of the EC in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs, receives Sergei Stanishev, Bulgarian Prime Minister Sergeï Stanishev, on the left, and Joaquín Almunia.


Berlaymont, Brussels, September 27, 2007. Photo © European Community, 2007.


Sergeï Stanishev, on the left and Joaquín Almunia


Signature by Danuta Hübner, Member of the EC in charge of Regional Policy and Sergei Stanishev, Bulgarian Prime Minister, of first Bulgarian Operational Programme.


Berlaymont, Brussels, September 27, 2007. ¨Photo © European Community, 2007.


Sergei Stanishev, on the right, and Danuta Hübner

All this would be laughable if this character, whose candidness is intended to be disarming, was not part of the best "organized" machinery after that of the former communist party, now renamed "socialist" and a member of the Bulgarian coalition government. [19]


And now this man who, as a member of the ruling coalition, had already tried, in 2005, to « manage the European Union's agricultural fund » did nothing better than to impose the appointment of one of his partners, Dimitar Tadarakov, a « businessman » already implicated in a series of scandals, to manage this fund. [20]

Indeed, Ahmed Demir Dogan does not lack resources. The man who boasted, during an interview, of having « bought the votes of the Kovachki miners » for 5 euros is now the man who manages European funds. It is odd that such a behaviour and improper use of public monies be tolerated by Brussels, since the facts have been proved.

President Sarkozy and his wife are expected to perform, on coming October 4th, 2007, an official visit to Bulgaria, in Sofia, a city whose « freemanship » they have been granted, and where they will be awarded the Order of Stara Planina for their contribution to the Bulgarian nurses' liberation from Libya.. Let's wager that they will be well inspired not to meet this shady character who God knows how long will keep pilfering his country with the European taxpayers' money... Perhaps the president's scheduled meeting with students will be an opportunity for him to tell them aloud what the European Union is whispering. [21]

  • "A businessman" specialized in Agriculture, Ahmed Demir Dogan also deals with the environment, another juicy "business".


Given the 8 billion euros which are being disbursed to Bulgaria under the European Union operative programme "Environment", including 1.28 for water and sewage, one can be assured that the Minister of the Environment, Djevget Chakarov, a member of MRF appointed by Dogan, will have no problem making good use of these funds to his country's benefit – and to his own. In any case, he won't be in a position to say that his master in politics did not reveal what he really thinks during a surprise visit to an assembly of Black Sea region mayors, when he declared : « If a mayor is not a businessman and does not know how  to transform opportunities into marketable goods, then that mayor should come and see me for tuition. Ecology is too important an issue to leave it to the ecologists. Ecology is an incredibly efficient tool for money making. » [22]

Assured of the votes of the Turkish minority which regroups 10% of a stable electorate, and of those bought from the Roma, Dogan could well strike it rich once more by crossing the 20% line, thus bettering his position to be « in businesss » without having to fear any future retribution. This even though he admits that « Bulgaria is not ripe for MRF to be its largest party ». [23]

The time has come for "the country of Orpheus and Eurydices, the homeland of the Thracians and of Dyonisos " to take its destiny into its own hands.


François de Vries

(Translated from the French by Michel Pochoy) 


(*) Former National Expert Seconded to the Commission. Professional journalist, specializing in defence and security issues.


[1] Bulgaria needs higher productivity : World Bank, AFP/EU Business, Sofia, 24 September 2007, 16:27. Source : World Bank: Bulgaria needs to raise its rate of growth of productivity to catch up with the EU, Sofia, 21 September 2007. Bulgaria: Accelerating Bulgaria’s Convergence : The Challenge of raising Productivity, Volume I and Volume II, Main report, July 20, 2007. See page 171, &9-38 namely.


[2] Welcome address by the president of the European Parliament, Hans-Gert Pöttering, to the Bulgarian president, M. Georgi Parvanov, plenary session, 31 January 2007.


[3] « The Bulgarian president on the list of the communist services' collaborators » in Le Monde dated 7 September 2007.


[4] Corruption in Contemporary Bulgaria : Policy paper, Chapter VII : Corruption and Economic Development in Bulgaria », by G. Ganev.


[5] The plan is to increase the lowest salaries by 27% and the highest by 1.5. The series of strikes is ongoing with a new threat by the pharmacists, following the hospital staff, the teachers, and other sectors. Again according to the daily Dnevnik, « the Central Treasury foresees an 8%  inflation rate and a 20% deficit of GDP until the end of the year ». 


[6] Geoffey Van Orden : A European Member of Parliament (since 1999). Vice-president of the Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy Commission (since 2002); co-spokesperson of the conservatives group for foreign affairs, defence, and human rights (since 1999); rapporteur of the European Parliament for Bulgaria (since 1999); member of the delegation to the EU-Turkey Mixed Parliamentary Commission (since 1999).


[7] Fighting corruption: the European deputies have adopted a resolution on the conclusion, on behalf of the European Community, of the United Nations Convention against Corruption. Report by Giusto Catania (IT).


[8] The Moscovici Report presented by the former French Minister Delegate for European Affairs (1997-2002). Vice-president of the European Parliament and European M.P. from June 2004 to June 2007. Rapporteur of the European Parliament's Foreign Affairs Commission on the accession of Romania to the European Union.


[9] Centre for the Study of Democracy. Read "Anti-corruption Reforms in Bulgaria : Key results and risks" (8th report published by the Centre for the Study of Democracy in Sofia on the development of corruption in Bulgaria in 2006-2007).


[10] Europe: Bulgarian corruption gobbles up resources equal to the expected funding by the European Union, April 25, 2007.


[11] Interview on bTV with Slavi Trifonov on 23 June 2005.

Interview with Dnevnik, on 9 February 2005. (page 11). The Misconception “Dogan – Guarantor of the Ethnic Peace


[12] “Let God give you Health, Mr. Dogans ” by Stoiko Tonev and in the daily Standart (page 33) dated 10 June 2005. Also picked up by Yuliana Toncheva : “Ahmed Dogan – sentenced to success” quoting Ahmed Dogan : “Bulgaria’s path to Europe passes through the Bosphorus.”.


[13] Interview with Dnevnik, on 9 February 2005.


[14] Quoted by the daily Standart on 6 February 2004.


[15 ] Ahmed Demir Dogan was the guest of "Panorama", a weekly host show produced by Bulgaria's first channel, BNT, on 15 December 2006.


[16] Quoted by the daily 24 hours on 15 May 2007.


[17] Confidence to the daily Sega on 17 May 2007 : « Dogan is convinced he is untouchable » by Petyo Tzekov.


[18] Quoted by the weekly Banker on 19 May 2007.


[19] Article in Mediapool.bg dated 14 June 2007 : « A businessman best known as the Credit Millionaire will manage the "agricultural fund",  part of the European Community funds placed at the disposal of Bulgaria, following its accession, for its agriculture. »


[20] In an article published on  21 September 2007 by a Bulgarian online information website, Mediapool.bg, the onus is on the appointment of a « businessman », Dimitar Tadarakov, implicated in scandals during the privatization of agricultural funds. This partner of  Dogan is also well placed in the White Paper on the fraudulent bankruptcies of Bulgarian banks during the « transition »… Tadarakov has no experience in agriculture, but has great experience in siphoning out money from 11 State companies and reducing the State's stake in "Bulgarleasing" from 80 to 30%. Such skills made him not only earn Dogan's confidence, but also become the treasurer of his party, the MRF.


[21] Scheduled on the programme, a meeting with the prime minister and the Bulgarian nurses, as well as a lecture to the students of  St Clement of Ohrid Sofia University. Source : 24 Tchassa, Troud, Novinar).


[22] Ahmed Dogan: We Don’t Want More Power, Bulgaria is Not Ready for This” by Olga Yoncheva (News.bg).


[23] Quoted by the Bulgarian daily Dnevnik on 26 September 2007.

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Directeur de la publication : Joël-François Dumont
Comité de rédaction : Jacques de Lestapis, Hugues Dumont, François de Vries (Bruxelles), Hans-Ulrich Helfer (Suisse), Michael Hellerforth (Allemagne).
Comité militaire : VAE Guy Labouérie (†), GAA François Mermet (2S), CF Patrice Théry (Asie).