Fact Check: The Rahn-Utt Plan Is NOT The Post-Communist Plan Of The West To Destroy Bulgaria

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  • от: Lead Stories автор
Fact Check: The Rahn-Utt Plan Is NOT The Post-Communist Plan Of The West To Destroy Bulgaria Never Enforced

Has the Rahn-Utt Plan, created by American experts, been carried out by all Bulgarian governments from 1990 until today to completely destroy post-communist Bulgaria? No, that's not true: The Rahn-Utt Plan is a formal economic study and report requested by the Bulgarian government in 1990 to establish a free-market economy and democracy in the country after the fall of communism. The plan was based on the principles of modern market economy and efficient production, but it was never fully implemented. Instead, many of the reforms introduced by politicians were in direct contradiction with the proposals in the report. Had the plan been fully executed, the transition would have proceeded with greater ease and success, positioning Bulgaria more effectively for EU membership and preventing it from falling behind other Central European nations.

The claim appeared in a TikTok video (archived here) published on Aug 3, 2023, under the title "The Rhan-Utt Plan." Translated from Bulgarian to English by Lead Stories staff, it opened:

Bulgaria was a medium-developed European country with a strong economy and army and enviable social conditions. Today, all of this has been destroyed according to a plan, and here it is: The Plan for the Destruction of Bulgaria, the Rahn-Utt project in 1990. This is the practical plan according to which the destruction of Bulgaria has been carried out by all governments since 1990 until today.

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

Screenshot 2023-09-23 003124.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Fri Sep 22 21:31:26 2023 UTC)

The false claim regarding the destructive Rahn-Utt Plan, which has been blamed for all current socio-economic challenges in Bulgaria such as inflation, depopulation, and emigration, proliferated widely across social media platforms and websites. These claims are tied to conspiracy theories surrounding the Rhan-Utt plan, alleging that it was orchestrated by coup plotters at the end of communism, hidden from the Bulgarian population. According to these theories, the document predetermined all future socio-economic developments in Bulgaria. From the outset, the new rulers were purportedly aware of the ensuing consequences, including suffering, hunger, illness, poverty, and a decline in the Bulgarian population.

Here is another TikTok video (archived here) with a caption translated by Lead Stories staff from Bulgarian to English. It opened:

According to the Rahn-Utt plan, signed by Ivan Kostov, the Bulgarian population should be reduced from 9 million to 3 million and Bulgaria should become American territory with American bases. Bulgarians, if you don't stand behind us now, tomorrow the USA-EU will wipe you out completely! We can't delude ourselves - without Russian protection, Bulgaria will be disjoined and destroyed! They only want your territory without the Bulgarian people!

Screenshot 2023-09-23 111446.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Sat Sep 22 08:14:48 2023 UTC)

The Rahn-Uht Plan is a comprehensive economic study and report conducted by Richard Rahn and Ronald Utt from the National Chamber Foundation (NCF) in Bulgaria. The Bulgarian government requested this study in March 1990 to help establish a free-market economy after the end of the forty-four years of communist rule and the removal of dictator Todor Zhivkov in November 1989. The NCF's select team of economists presented a comprehensive 600-page report of the Bulgarian Economic Growth and Transition Project which was accepted unanimously by the Bulgarian Grand National Assembly in late 1990. The report provided a series of policy recommendations to guide and encourage the economic transition process such as privatization, price liberalization, trade liberalization, fiscal reform, and financial sector reform. The plan proposed various measures, including the introduction of a currency board. However, the plan faced opposition from both democratic forces and the socialist opposition at the time.

In 1989, the advent of democracy in Bulgaria ushered in political freedom, yet it also brought about economic hardships. The 1990s marked a period of upheaval and instability, eroding the sense of security and stability for many individuals. A significant portion of society holds the view that external forces are perceived as "hostile," and some even subscribe to the notion of a "universal conspiracy" targeting otherwise "hardworking and intelligent" individuals.

Objective analysis shows that the Rhan-Utt plan, or more precisely, the program developed by American researchers with the help of leading Bulgarian economists, would have led to incomparably good results for Bulgaria if it were actually implemented.

The fact is that not a single stage in it, not a single deadline was met and not a single element of this plan was fully implemented. In practice, the "Rahn-Utt plan" was not implemented, but abandoned by the governments of the "transition". (Borisov, Yuri)

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