It’s all over the wires, it’s amazing to watch. But was the assassination attempt staged?
A Bulgarian politician had a miraculous escape after a man stormed on staged and pointed a gun at his head during a party conference.
Ahmed Dogan, the leader of the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF), survived unscathed after the pistol appeared to jam before the man was wrestled to the ground.
The extraordinary moment was captured on camera as the leader of the party for ethnic Turks delivered a speech in the Bulgarian capital of Sofia on Saturday.
Here’s the video in question:
However, a Reddit user named ‘iheartnickleback’ (WAIT, WHAT?) has a different view:
Ok, here’s what’s up – First off, the guy staring down the barrel is Ahmed Dogan, a Bulgarian of Turkish ethnicity. He got his start in the late 80’s and early 90’s as more or less a domestic terrorist. At the time, the Bulgarian (communist) government was doing some pretty dickish stuff to the Turkish population of Bulgaria, including changing their names and threatening/otherwise harassing them. This guy, Dogan, in retaliation to the regime, blew up a fuckin’ train, full of women and children and everything. He was thrown in jail, and later sentenced to 10 years. HOWEVER, as the communist government in Bulgaria crumbled apart in ’89, he was pardoned, less than a year after being sentenced, and he immediately founded a political party, and entered the newly-democratized government structure.
Here’s what you need to know about his party – it is completely ethnically-based. They win seats in parliament because 100% of the Turkish minority in Bulgaria is behind them. They gain even more seats through election fraud – bussing non-Bulgarian Turks into the country to vote for them every election. Dogan has gone on to do even more scandalous stuff, which he was acquitted of recently, and his party is actually pretty influential – their support is in the teens, and they were part of the ruling coalition for 8 years, until 2009.
This is why this assassination attempt matters – Dogan knows that the fate of his political influence lies in the hands of ethnic Turks in Bulgaria. Any threats on him, or any sort of violence against Turks will be seen as ethnic aggression, and gain him much support, and many more votes in the upcoming parliamentary elections. Ideally, these aggression would come from ATAKA – Bulgaria’s nationalist, right-wing, insane fringe party. They have had their sights on this guy (metaphorically, of course) for years. That is not the case, however. This is what doesn’t make sense about this whole scenario – he was attacked by another Turkish-Bulgarian, wielding a non-lethal gas gun (Maybe lethal at this range, I don’t know..). This means one of two things – either this was just a super-shitty assassination attempt, the motives behind which are murky and uncertain, or, and I feel this is the more likely case – he was hired by Dogan’s party to carry out that botched attempt, with the sole purpose of gaining support in an election year. Of course, it’s confusing why they would hire a Turk instead of a racist Bulgarian, but I’m sure the next few days we’ll find out more about this guy and his motives.
A cursory search on Ahmed Dogan shows that much of this comment is bullshit. But there are some odd things about this attack. If a guy, previously arrested for drug charges and hooliganism, wanted to kill Dogan, why would he use a ‘gas pistol‘ instead of a real gun?
What is a gas pistol you ask? Fuck it, even if you didn’t ask I’m going to tell you.
A gas pistol is a non-lethal weapon used for self-defense and other purposes. It is typically a close-to-exact replica or conversion of a real handgun made to be able to fire tear gas cartridges only. Effective range is up to 4.5 metres depending on caliber. For legal purposes various techniques are used during manufacture/conversion to prevent the use of live ammunition, such as using calibers exclusive to gas cartridges, welding obstacles into a non-removable barrel and using malleable metal alloys. Gas pistols are prevalent in European countries with strict gun control laws. Gas pistols are also used in weapons training, and as starting pistols, flare guns, and movie props.
It could be possible that, from that range, a gas pistol may have been fatal. But if a guy was going to jump up on stage during a televised news conference, risk getting shot himself and spending some real time in prison for the attack NOT use a real weapon? It seems very odd.
There’s also chatter that the shooter is a Turk, the same ethnicity as the politician. Then again, Dogan was supposedly going to step down at this event, throwing support to another politician. If that’s the case, there may be a ‘traitor’ motivation at play.
Regardless, what a bizarre incident. And what an amazing video.