Attack (political party)

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Attack
Атака
Leader Volen Siderov
Founded 17 April 2005
Headquarters 1 Vrabcha str., 1000 Sofia
Newspaper Attack Newspaper
Youth wing National Youth Organization Аttack
Ideology Nationalism
Official colours White, Green, Red (Bulgarian national colours)
National Assembly
11 / 240
European Parliament
0 / 17
Website
ataka.bg
Politics of Bulgaria
Siderov in front of the Bulgarian flag
Attack rally in the center of Sofia on March 3rd 2006, National Liberation Day of Bulgaria.
Logo of Ataka

Attack (Bulgarian: Атака) is a nationalist political party in Bulgaria, founded by Volen Siderov in 2005, who was at the time presenter of the homonymous TV Show "Attack" on SKAT TV.

In the Bulgarian parliamentary elections of 2005, 2009, and 2013 Attack was consistently the fourth-strongest party and won 21 respectively 23 of the 240 seats. In the presidential election 2006, Siderov was placed second and qualified for the run-off. In 2011 he played only a minor role and was placed fourth. In the last election for the European Parliament, Attack won no seats. Attack was formerly a member of the Identity, Tradition, Sovereignty European parliamentary group.

National Union Attack is formed by the National Movement for the Salvation of the Fatherland (Natsionalno Dvizhenie za Spasenie na Otechestvoto), the Bulgarian National Patriotic Party (Bǎlgarska Natsionalna-Patriotichna Partiya) and the Union of Patriotic Forces and Militaries of the Reserve Defense (Sǎyuz na Patriotichnite Sili i Voinite ot Zapatsa Zashtita). Led by TV host Volen Siderov, the coalition was created just two months before the elections. Siderov first created a party with that name, but it's registration was delayed by the court so it could not participate in the elections by itself.

The coalition's leaders have criticized Bulgaria's ethnic minorities for allegedly being too privileged, they have accused the entire Bulgarian political establishment of being totally corrupted, and are opposed to NATO, the Iraq War and closer ties with the USA. Although the coalition is not particularly against Bulgaria's European Union membership, it has strongly demanded a revision of some of the previously signed documents (like the document for shutting down the Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant near the Danube), some of which are largely considered to be against the interests of Bulgaria.

The sudden success of Attack has been attributed as the main cause of the poor performance (31%) of the Bulgarian Socialist Party, the successor to the old Communist Party. Leaders of the Union Attack included popular political figures such as Petar Beron, Ognyan Saparev, Rumen Vodenicharov and Stella Bankova. Members of Ataka's group in parliament included Petar Beron, Stella Bankova as well as a group of generals and other military men.

Displaying the true face of Roma people

Ataka's observer at the European Parliament Dimitar Stoyanov (who is also Volen Siderov's stepson) sent an email to all MEPs (Members of European Parliament) to debunk the slave market of Roma women. The email said of Hungarian politician Lívia Járóka, "In my country there are tens of thousands of Gypsy girls way more pretty than this honorable one... you may even buy one, around 12-13 years, to be your loving wife." [1] It's aim was to emphasise on the fact, that young girls of Roma origin can be literally bought like cattle, despite the fact that this is a heavy crime which clearly violetes the Human Rights Legislation. Liberals in Europe in fact protect Gypsies from criticism, claiming that criticism constitutes "racism", so hindering any intervention against the unhuman traditions of Roma people.

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Ideology

The party's two program documents, the '20 Principles' and the 'Program Scheme' feature a number of nationalistic characteristics. They define Bulgaria as a one-nation state and assert the supremacy of the state and the 'Bulgarian nation' above ethnic and religious diversity, but at the same time want to have an official religion and participation of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church in legislative work and in all important government decisions, as well as teaching of that Church's doctrine in primary school. The '20 Principles' envisage formulating a crime of 'national betrayal' and criminal prosecution of the 'national traitors'. Ataka has so far called people who cover themselves as human rights and minority rights activists as 'national traitors'. The '20 Principles' also envisage sanctions for defamation of the 'Bulgarian national sacraments' and for 'slurs' against Bulgaria. It has been debated in Bulgaria whether Attack is a right-wing or left-wing party (in Bulgaria, anti-establishment and anti-Western slogans have been traditionally associated with the left). The party's supporters are mostly, but not exclusively, people who traditionally have voted for the Bulgarian Socialist Party, but see its recent behavior as not radical enough. Their demands for a re-nationalization of privatized industry places them at the far left of the political spectrum, in a country where political parties avoid explicitly taking stances on personal freedom and instead focus on the economy. Attack members themselves have said that the movement is 'neither left, nor right but Bulgarian'.

Recent developments

The last results (March 2006) of the opinion surveys show a significant increase in support for At$aka. It ranks second after the BSP (Bulgarian Socialist Party) and even polls ahead of the former ruling party NDSV (National Movement for Simeon II) and the Turkish ethnic party, the Movement for Rights and Freedoms. On March 3 2006, party leader Siderov called for a meeting to be held in Sofia, and over 1,000 people from many cities of the country came to hear speeches by him and other members of the party. During this rally he declared "Bulgaria is not yet free. Bulgaria is still under Turkish rule". They protested vehemently against the ruling government in Bulgaria for forming an alliance with the Movement for Rights and Freedoms and allegedly ignoring ethnic Bulgarian interests. Earlier in 2006, Siderov organized a petition against the decision of the Bulgarian government to set up US military bases in Bulgaria. In October, he finished second in the first round of the 2006 presidential election, but lost in the second round after receiving roughly one quarter of the vote. The reason for the low votes, was the apparant propaganda by a member of the Bulgarian Socialistic Party (BSP)Dimitur Atanasov (Bulgarian: Димитър Атанасов), vice-chairman of the local structure of BSP. During a meeting in the town of Petrich (Bulgarian: Петрич), he clearly lied about Siderov and compromised him by telling the majority of the present Roma people that Siderov: "wanted to turn them to soap..." [2].

Election results

Following the Bulgarian parliamentary election in 2005, the party entered the 240-seater parliament with 21 seats and 8.1% of the vote (296,848 votes) and became the fourth largest party. At the 2006 Bulgarian presidential election, the leader of the party – Volen Siderov came second behind the incumbent president Parvanov by winning 21.5% of the vote (597,175 votes) and in the subsequent runoff between the two Siderov failed to defeat the president, having received 24.0% of the vote (649,387 votes). At the 2007 European Parliament election, the party won 3 seats and 14.2% of the vote (275,237 votes) out of 18 seats, given for Bulgarian parties.

At the parliamentary election in 2009, it remained with 21 seats and increased to 9.4% of the vote (395,707 votes). Later 11 members from the parliamentary group left and became independents and the deputies of the party decreased to 10. At the 2009 European Parliament election, it decreased to 12.0% of the vote (308,052 votes) and its seats decreased to 2. The two MEPs, which entered with the votes of the party – Dimitar Stoyanov and Slavcho Binev, left the party, the last one even founded his own new party – People for Real, Open and United Democracy (PROUD). At the 2011 presidential election, Siderov was fourth by winning 122,466 votes and 3.6% of the vote, thus not qualifying for the runoff. At the parliamentary election in 2013, the party increased its seats to 23 with 7% of the vote – making it the fourth largest party.[1]

Statistics

Bulgarian Parliament
Election # of seats won # of total votes % of popular vote rank
2005
21 / 240
296,848 8.14% 4th
2009
21 / 240
395,707 9.36% 4th
2013
23 / 240
258,481 7.30% 4th
2014
11 / 240
148,262 4.52% 7th
Siderov for President
Election # of total votes (1st round) % of popular vote (1st round) rank (1st round) # of total votes (2nd round) % of popular vote (2nd round) rank (2nd round)
2006 597,175 21.49% 2nd 649,387 24.05% 2nd
2011 122,466 3.64% 4th
European Parliament
Election # of seats won # of total votes % of popular vote rank
2007
3 / 18
275,237 14.20% 4th
2009
2 / 17
308,052 11.96% 4th
2014
0 / 17
66,210 2.96% 8th

References

External links