Major General Grudi Angelov, PhD – Commandant of Rakovski National Defence College: Georgi Stoykov Rakovski was the first to establish a unique school for military training – the Legion

Article by Veselina Angelova, correspondent of The Trud Newspaper in Veliko Tarnovo, published Monday, 12.04.2021.

MG Angelov, Rakovski National Defence College celebrates the 200th  anniversary of the birth of its patron Georgi Rakovski. What is the main event?
To commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of the famous Bulgarian, the College has organised a two-day scientific conference with international participation under the title of Georgi Stoykov Rakovski - 200 years of Immortality. The conference is held in a blended format. Only the pleanary speaker paricipate in person in our most beautiful hall called Rakovski. The main presentations are broadcast live via the MS Teams paltform and will be uploaded on the Youtube and on our Facebook page. A printed version of the collection of papers from the Scientific Conference will be published and disseminated soon.
What are the main directions to present some historical research and contemporary analyzes of the written work and the heritage of Georgi Rakovski?
The conference is held under the auspicies of two ministers who are also close friends of our College - Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Krassimir Karakachanov and Minister of Culture Boil Banov. The scientific conference presentations are divided and presented in several panels. The first panel is dedicated to Rakovski’s heritage as the patriarch of the Bulgarian national liberation movement. The second panel focuses on Georgi Rakovski as a scientist and artist and the third panel analyses Rakovski from an international perspective. The plenary session was moderated by Colonel Associate Professor Dimitar Tashkov, Deputy Commandant of the College for Education and Science.
Who are the main participants in the scientific conference?
Prominent Bulgarian scientists are participating. Some of them are Prof. Kiril Topalov, chairman of Rakovski National Association since 2004. He presents his research on Rakovski’s poetry. Prof. Topalov is the author of numerous scientific studies - articles and books on the history of Bulgarian literature, famous novels (three of which are filmed), plays for the theatre and television performed on Bulgarian and foreign stages, books of short stories for children. 
Prof. Dr. Plamen Mitev from St. Kliment Ohridski Sofia University presents his research on Georgi Rakovski as an ideologist of the Bulgarian national liberation movement, his contributions and some historiographical debates. Prof. Mitev’s research interests are related to the economic and social history of the Ottoman Empire in the 18th and19th centuries, the Bulgarian Revival and foreign propaganda on the Balkans. He is the author and co-author of dozens of books and textbooks, scientific articles in Bulgarian and foreign specialized journals.
Prof. Svetlozar Eldarov is from the Institute of Balkan Studies and Center of Tracology at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. The researcher is known as the author of 12 monographs, 38 parts of collective works, more than 200 scientific articles and over 100 journal publications on the history of Bulgaria and the Balkans in the 19th and 20th centuries, the national liberation movement of Bulgarians in Macedonia and Thracia, Bulgarian military and religious history, Bulgarian-Croatian relations, and more. He is also the author of the scripts of ten documentaries. He is a member of the Macedonian Scientific Institute, the Thracian Scientific Institute, the Bulgarian Historical Society, the Bulgarian Association of Military History and the Military History Commission. He presents his research „The Revolutionary Ideology of Rakovski and Levski and the Liberation Movement of the Macedonian and Thracian Bulgarians in 1878-1912”.
Prof. Plamen Pavlov from St. St. Cyril and Methodius University of Veliko Tarnovo is the initiator and participant in various scientific, cultural and social projects. In 2018 he was elected chairman of the Vasil Levski Foundation. His presentation is dedicated to Rakovski and Vasil Levski as the leaders of the Bulgarian national revolution.
Prof. Evgeniy Sachev is from the University of Library Science and Information Technology. He is a descendant of an old Bulgarian family from the region of Bitola, today in Northern Macedonia. He is the author of more than 40 books in the field of cultural heritage and national security. He has laid the foundations of the science of monuments of culture and history - culturonomy. He is the co-chairman of the Center Association for Research in Science, Ethnicities and Security. His presentation is on the scientific contribution of Georgi Rakovski in the national psychology.
Prof. Venelin Terziev is a representative of the Ministry of Culture. His research interests include education policies and technologies, development and management of cultural heritage, social governance, social policies, the labour market, human resources management, geopolitics, political geography and international security systems, as well as topics of an interdisciplinary character. He is known for supporting and promoting Bulgarian culture in our communities in Moldova and Ukraine. His presentation is under the title „Georgi Rakovski – the one to remember and follow.”
Who participates from Rakovski National Defence College?
Our professors and researchers from the Defence Advanced Reasearch Institute also participate in the scientific forum. They are Assoc. Prof. Rumen Nikolov with a presentation on „Rakovski’s vision of an Independent Bulgarian State”; Assoc. Prof. Anatoliy Prokopiev presents the European influence in the formation of the military-theoretical heritage of Georgi Stoykov Rakovski; Assoc. Prof. Miroslav Mirchev’s research is with the title of „Rakovski’s ‘Secret Society’ as a Prototype of the Modern Bulgarian Military Intelligence”. Assoc. Prof. Radoslav Bonev presents “Rakovski’s Political Ideology of in the Works of Academician Mihail Arnaudov”, LtCol. Assis. Prof. Kalin Ranchev examines the theoretical military views of Georgi Rakovski in his plans for the liberation of Bulgaria. The presentation of CDR Assis. Prof. Todor Dimitrov is dedicated to Rakovski’s Legion as the prototype of the armed forces of the Bulgarian state, and Assis. Prof. Stoyan Nikolov’s research is on Rakovski’s weapons in Bulgarian museums.
What new findings about Rakovski’s personality have been presented? 
In addition to the scientific presentations, a digital exhibition „Georgi Stoykov Rakovski: bright mind and invincible spirit” is presented. It is work of a team of researchers including Prof. Roumyana Preshlenova, Assis. Prof. Alexandra Milanova, Assis. Prof. Vasil Karadzov, Dr. Kalin Yordanov, and Ellie Filipova from the Institute of Balkan Studies and Center of Tracology at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. Also, the research of Eng. Georgi Mandev is very interesting; it is on Andrea Sako’s painting Rakovski in the Balkan Mountains and her photographic portraits. Prof. Roumyana Damyanova from the Institute of Literature at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences presents her research „Rakovski between Letters and Journalism”; and there are other presentations as well.
Why has Rakovski National Defence College initiated the celebrations dedicated to the 200th anniversary of Georgi Rakovskis birth?
Georgi Rakovski is a renowned strategist and the founder of the national liberation movement of the Bulgarian people. He developed three plans for liberation and he was the first to establish a unique school for military training - the Legion. This is what the College and other military universities are doing today, but they are also training and educating heads of state, both current and future. Georgi Rakovski has been our patron for 75 years and the start to commemorate the significant anniversary was given by the College. The celebrations will continue throughout the year. In addition to the scientific conference with international participation which we host, they will include fireworks in his home town of Kotel, exhibitions and essay competitions in the towns of Karlovo, Rakovski, Burgas, Plovdiv, Sofia and other places.