Epoch of the communism

Bulgaria was allied with Germany in World War I and sided with Germany again in World War II. Bulgaria avoided declaring against the Soviet Union in the second war, thus limiting its fight against the Allied Powers. In 1944, Bulgaria began armistice talks with the Western Allies, but the Soviet Union suddenly declared war on Bulgaria and quickly occupied the country.

On September 9, 1944, a government of the Fatherland Front including Communists, Agrarians, Social Democrats and members of Zveno, was formed. Bulgaria took part as a co-belligerent in the final phase of World War II, casualties numbering 30,000. People's Court was set up for trying all persons responsible for the country's siding with the Third Reich, reprisals and fascist activities. The trials of over 11,000 persons (of who 2700 got death sentences) were preceded by unlawful executions. The Soviets in fact had become complete masters of the situation. The Communist Party grew rapidly reaching soon quarter of a million members, and became dominant force on Bulgarian political arena. In September 1946 a referendum was held in which 95 per cent cast votes for republic. Two months later Georgi Dimitrov, who had come from Moscow, became head of Communist dominated government.