The creation of Freemasonry lodges and Supreme Councils in our country is becoming business and politics
The Russian hybrid war in Bulgaria has a new important target – the unity of Bulgarian Freemasonry. After breaking this unity, the next step would be their subsequent subordination to Kremlin interests and the resulting domination of Russian Masons in the Balkans.
The first considerable breakthrough is already a fact – on May 5th this year a constituent assembly for the installation of a new Second Supreme Council of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite was held in Plovdiv. It elected as Grand Commander a very controversial person – Ivan Sariev, who until a year ago was the Grand Master of the local Masons. Just a few weeks later, on May 25th, a third Supreme Council was also established in Plovdiv, with Rumen Naydenov as Commander. This comes as a shock to the community, as for more than 17 years now the Supreme Council of the 33rd and Last Degree of the Old Council was installed in Sofia and the Scottish Rite of Freemasons was accepted in Bulgaria, with its Grand Commander Petar Kalpakchiev. It was founded on January 7th, 2001, and was legitimated in front of the Masonic World directly by the Mother Supreme Council of the World, the Supreme Council of the 33rd Degree of the Southern Jurisdiction of the US, in accordance with the Great Constitution of 1786.
Freemasonry was restored in Bulgaria on December 5th, 1992 in the capital Sofia, with the establishment of the Grand Lodge of Bulgaria, and its Grand Master Georgi Krumov. This happened after decades of totalitarian prohibition, repressions and censorship even for mentioning the word “Masonry”.
The operation for the Takeover of the Bulgarian Brotherhood
It began somewhat inconspicuously about four years ago, following the illegal occupation of the Crimea and its annexation by Russia. This period coincided with the activation of the Russian hybrid war, propaganda and subversive activities on the Balkans, in Europe and the United States. Across the country, Masonic communities began to appear, most profusely on the Black Sea coast. Members of those communities are mainly Russian citizens, with 35% of them affiliated to FSB and former KGB, as alleged by sources from Faktor.bg. These are mostly Russians with Bulgarian citizenship or with property on our territory. It is also intriguing and by no means fortuitous that out of the four new staff members of the Russian embassy in Sofia, three are Masons. The main contacts between Russian and Bulgarian Masons are conducted by Russian citizen Alexey Trubetskoy, say sources familiar with the conspiracy. Trubetskoy is a former employee of the special services in Russia, close to President Putin and owner of a PR Agency involved in election campaigns. In this manner, almost imperceptibly, Russian influence on Bulgarian Masonry became massive. Such Masonic communities are additionally filled with Bulgarians who are also connected with former communist secret services, Russophile movements and former Red bureaucrats, many of which are financially dependent on Russian credit and joint ventures. These events are leading to the fragmentation of Freemasonry in a large number of unsubstantial Grand Lodges, with varied external recognition and lack of mutual recognition. This ‘swarming’ is not based on the Ancient rules.
After the multiplication of the “Grand Lodges”, the second stage of the operation is underway – the swarming of the “Supreme Councils of 33o“, which are becoming a serious risk to national security, overlooked by our Special services at this stage. Russian “nests” like the above are clearly violating the laws of our country – they have no official registration, although they should be operating under the Non-Profit Legal Entities Act. At least three national security laws are being breached: for foreign citizens, classified information and the stay of foreign citizens in Bulgaria. Thus, by the creation of the Second and Third Supreme Councils in May, there were eight Masonic nests in operation in the country already, which are naturally becoming the base for those influences. These circumstances, however, do not bother the Commanders of the new Supreme Councils, installed from abroad, as their actual task is to erode Bulgarian Freemasonry and turn it into a function of Russian and Turkish Masonry.
The goals are to infiltrate Freemasonry in Bulgaria and place it under Russian and Turkish control; complete infiltration of state and business institutions and taking positions in Macedonia and the Western Balkans, placing them under Kremlin influence. Or to use the newly established Bulgarian Masonic structures as “Trojan horses” to infiltrate the Balkans.
The ultimate goal is close to the geopolitical strategic goal – to remove the influence of the US on the Balkans and replace it with Russian and Turkish influence.
“Light” from “Temnata Dupka Cave (The Dark Hole)”
March 14th, 2018 proved to be special for the long-term plan for the takeover and breaking the unity of the Bulgarian Masonry. The Temnata Dupka Cave (Bulgarian meaning The Dark Hole) near Lakatnik became the special scene of the ritual, where the important decision to create a Second Supreme Council parallel to Petar Kalpakchiev’s Council was taken. There is no explanation of why the followers of Russian Masonry in our country have decided to get the light from inside a cave and what power they expect to draw from the darkness and the depths of the Earth.
However, Temnata Dupka can be interpreted as an unintended metaphor of the dark forces occupying Russia and turning it into a danger to democracy, methodically infiltrating our country as well.
The rock phenomenon near the town of Svoge was decorated with particular opulence in harmony with the Masonic symbolism. The credit goes to brother Danny Valkanov, 33rd degree Mason and brother Ilian Mateev, 32nd degree. The transfer of important guests to Lakatnik was organized with a special train composition, including the personal car of Tsar Boris III, as well as exquisite catering during the trip. Formally, the light for the new Supreme Council for Bulgaria was brought in by the Supreme Councils of Germany, Italy, Russia and Turkey, represented by the Sovereign Grand Commander of Germany, Eberhard Desch, but the participants in the conspiracy are aware that Russia and Turkey have the leading roles in the process.
A proof of this is the letter dated March 15th this year by the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite under the jurisdiction of the Supreme Council of Russia in Bulgaria, informing the Brethren that the issue of the creation of the Second Supreme Council was decided in Russia. Again, with a paper with the letterhead of the Supreme Council of Russia, the dissenters from Kalpakchiev’s group were informed that the Ancient and Grand Master Ivan Sariev was appointed Grand Commander of the Supreme Council of Bulgaria. The Russian patrons congratulated him with a special letter and called on the Bulgarian Masons to unite around him and support him for the installation of the new Supreme Council on May 5th in Plovdiv. All the correspondence that Faktor.bg has at its disposal (see at the end of the text, ed.) is written on letterheaded paper of the Supreme Council of the Russian Masons.
It is important to clarify that only Masons above 3o may be members of the Supreme Council. It brings together brothers from the 4th to the 33rd degree included. To meet the requirements of the new mission, Ivan Sariev and his immediate circle received the important 33rd degree in Turkey, and other followers of his in Russia or through its Supreme Council.
A senior representative of the Brotherhood commented for Faktor.bg: “The path to high degrees through non-Bulgarian Supreme Councils has become a business and politics – where to get them! The indecisiveness of the “elite”, ruling profane Bulgaria today, has managed to crawl into our community too! And that is already quite profane and not Masonic by any means.”
According to him, it is important to give an adequate response to the question: Who is interested in creating this chaos in the Bulgarian Masonry whose legitimate Supreme Council is recognized and received light directly by the US Supreme Council 17 years ago. Why this complicated conspiracy, mediated by Russia and Turkey, given that their Supreme Councils have been created with the blessing of the United States. Why do the Second Supreme Council of Sariev and the Third Supreme Council of Naydenov prefer to be Russian and Turkish vassals?
In the shadow of General Reshetnikov
The installation of the Second and Third Supreme Councils in Plovdiv, with Commanders Ivan Sariev and Rumen Naydenov, is also associated with the rather conspiratorial visit in late April and early May by former KGB General Leonid Reshetnikov, a political analyst who is close to Putin and was until recently Director of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies. Andrei Bogdanov, who bears the title of Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Russia, is extremely close to Reshenikov, and according to the local Masons, both have exerted strong pressure for the establishment of the Second Supreme Council under Russian control. During his visit to Bulgaria, Reshenikov spent several days incognito in the deluxe hotel in Devin, known as “Dogan’s Rhodopi seraglio” which is where the general had several secret meetings, including with the masons from Ivan Sariev’s circle, who is a native of this region.
Interestingly, over the years both Rumen Naydenov and the others were Kalpakchiev’s right hand.
From May 23, the separatists around Naidenov were removed from the legitimate Supreme Council of the brotherhood of Kalpakchiev. But quite in the Bulgarian fashion, on May 23rd, two days after their rights were removed; they announced that they have also removed Kalpakchiev from his position as the Grand Commander. Their act is illegal and against the Statute – it is a puppet action. Nevertheless, it led to the embarassingand comical situation at the World Conference of Supreme Councils held a few weeks ago in Paraguay, where Bulgaria was represented by two Councils – the legitimate Council of Kalpakchiev and by Naidenov’s impostors. In fact, thenames of the latter were submitted for the high forum attendance some months ago while they were still members of the Bulgarian Supreme Council.
Who are the main players of the Russian and Turkish Masons in Bulgaria
There are claims from the Masonic brotherhood that Todor Kostov and Valery Mitkov were leading the conspiracy on the Russian side, with the parallel participation of Ivan Sariev on behalf of the Turkish. Apparently, the Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of Bulgaria Iskren Yotov is turning towards Sariev too.
While he was Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of Bulgaria, Ivan Sariev often swore by the unity of the Bulgarian Masonry, but his brothers say he actually began to work for its destruction several years ago. A curious detail of his biography is that as an army officer a few years ago he lost a bag with secret documents in Istanbul, but the scandal was washed away and the officer emerged from the unpleasant situation unpunished. He sacrificed his military career, but his close relationships with influential circles in our southern neighbor flourished. His Best Man is the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Turkey Prof. Remzi Sanver, and Sariev himself is known to be the Best Man of an influential minister of the current government in Bulgaria. In Sofia, the new commander is often seen in the elite lobby bars of hotels in the company of Turkish citizens who look more like members of the special services of Turkey, MIT. In fact, it has long been known that Masonry in our southern neighbor is under the direct control of their special services, and this probably explains Sariev’s impressive acquaintances. After leaving military service, it is difficult to determine what kind of business the influential Bulgarian Mason now has. Some sources claim that he has recently become a professor at the notorious University for Librarians.
An important and influential group in Sariev’s Second Supreme Council is the current Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge, Iskren Yotov. He is a native of Pleven, a graduate of the Simeonovo Police School, a candidate for MP from the BSP list and has strong connections in the centenary party. The Grand Master has close personal contacts with leaders of the party such as Roumen Petkov, Roumen Ovcharov, Iliana Yotova, Cornelia Ninova. The fact that he is also one of the lawyers of the bankrupt banker Tsvetan Vassilev is also indicative. So the circle closes, and it is hardly surprising to anyone that Yotov was an enthusiastic supporter of the new Supreme Council, established with Russia’s blessing.
Unofficially, it is rumored in the Masonic circles that the famous Plovdiv businessman, the Honorary Russian Consul and Russian citizen, the famous Mason Georgi Gergov, is associated with the new Supreme Council. At this stage, however, he has seemingly stayed out of the conspiracy and officially maintained contacts with Kalpakchiev’s Council.
Some Masons point at Todor Kostov as a prominent “builder” of Russian Masonry in Bulgaria. He is from Burgas and has worked for Neftochim and Lukoil. Kostov went to Russia and spent 19 years in the petrol business there. He returned to Bulgaria after the start of the economic crisis and started investing in bio-fuels in partnership with former officers from SANS. Some Masonic brothers say that Kostov often discusses the harm of our membership in the EU and NATO and insists that our country should orient itself to the Eurasian space.
The most concise description of Rumen Naydenov, the leader of the Third Supreme Council is that he was disclosed by the Commission for affiliation with the former security and intelligence services as an agent nick-named Popov. His closest associate is Nikolay Kulbov, a State Security officer.
The Mother Supreme Council of the World, the Supreme Council of the 33rd Degree of the Southern Jurisdiction of the US is acquainted with the Russian-Turkish coup in the Bulgarian Masonry. Their support for Petar Kalpakchiev is unshakable – he is a life member of the Supreme Council of the Masons in the United States. One of the highest-ranking Masons in the world, Robert Woodward, head of the Masonic structures of the NATO member states and deputy of the Supreme Council of America, said of him that the awarding of Kalpakchiev with this high office is a unique fact in the whole world history of Freemasonry. For the first time, someone from behind the former Iron Curtain in Europe is honored with such a post. The accession of Kalpakchiev in 2004 to the composition of the Mother Supreme Council, whose headquarters are in Washington, was approved by a full majority.
Beyond the conspiracy theories and the suggestions that the Masons rule and control the world, in the years of transition from Communism, the Bulgarian Masons, albeit unofficially, have made a significant contribution to the society and the accession of our country to NATO which opened the doors to Bulgaria’s EU membership too. Another distinctive feature of our Masons is that they gravitate towards and are related to their American brothers. This tendency obviously displeases the imperial ambitions of Moscow and Ankara. What is most worrying is that for the sake of Russian and Turkish interests, Bulgarians are ready to sell their homeland yet again, turning it into a hostage to dictatorial regimes and personal ambitions.
By Stoyko Stoyanov