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Old 04-10-2011, 05:26 PM   #1
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G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2012.

The G. S. Rakovski Military Academy was founded in Sofia on 1st March 1912 (The year of the first Balkan War) and opened 4th January 1915, (The year Bulgarian joined the Great War on the side of the central powers). Opening was delayed by the Balkans Wars. It is where the highest level military leaders go to advance their career. I thought I'd put together the timeline of the graduation badges of the institution. All but the first two are also in my collection.

These first two are the Imperial badge awarded until 1944 which features the Order "For Bravery" with the date 1912 which is the date of the founding of the institution. The second is the People's republic variation issued from 1948 until the mid 1950's and on this variation the Imperial Order is replaced with the seldom awarded communist Order "For Bravery" and imperial coat of arms replaced with the communist coat of arms.
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File Type: jpg AcademyBadge11912-1944.jpg (60.6 KB, 5 views)
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge21948-1950s.jpg (91.4 KB, 4 views)

Last edited by CtahhR; 04-10-2011 at 08:42 PM.
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Old 04-10-2011, 05:31 PM   #2
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

In the 1950's the Imperial based badge was replaced with a soviet style Rhombus. The first badge was issued for a short period during the mid 1950's when the academy was know as "General Military Academy G. S. Rakovski" soon after the institution was renamed simply "Military Academy G. S. Rakovski" this second variation of the rhombus was awarded until 1971 when the coat of arms of Bulgaria was changed. The third variation was issued from 1971 until the 1980's when it was replaced with a less Soviet style badge.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge31950s.jpg (69.5 KB, 9 views)
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge41950s-1971.jpg (35.5 KB, 9 views)
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge51971-1980s.jpg (61.2 KB, 9 views)
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Old 04-10-2011, 05:37 PM   #3
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

This first badge is a later communist period badge which features a portrait of Rakovski. Moving away from the Soviet style rhombus with the red star being the only communist affectation. After the collapse of the communist regime the badge was changed completely and did not feature any Imperial or communist representations this variation was not used for a long period (1991-1993) as Imperial symbols came back into use.
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File Type: jpg AcademyBadge61980s-1991.jpg (97.9 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge71991-1993.jpg (73.7 KB, 2 views)
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Old 04-10-2011, 05:43 PM   #4
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

From 1993 the Academy's badge returned to a very imperial style, once again featuring the Imperial order "For Bravery" and the national coat of arms. The first badge was issued from 1993 until 2000 when they were replaced with badges very similar to the original badge. After 2000 the badges were also awarded in two classes dependant on the rank of the alumnus. The badges once again changed after the induction of Bulgaria into NATO.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge81993-2000.jpg (82.6 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge92000-2006Gold.jpg (95.1 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg AcademyBadge92000-2006Silver.jpg (78.2 KB, 2 views)
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Old 04-10-2011, 05:47 PM   #5
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

Here is the current issue of the Academy badge. Featuring the letters ВА (for Military Academy). It will be on the chests of Bulgarian high ranking NATO officers of tomorrow.
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File Type: jpg AcademyBadge10Current.jpg (80.0 KB, 3 views)
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Old 04-10-2011, 05:54 PM   #6
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

Here are pictures of the former academy badge being worn. First is Major-General Georgi Georgiev, Head of the academy until 2005. And second is Colonel/Professor/Doctor Valerij Ivanov, first deputy of the academy. Both men wear the current (at time of photo) variation of the badge although they both graduated in the 1980's. Georgiev was also awarded the Order "For Loyal Service Under The Banner" 2nd Class which is now an obsolete award and he is not wearing any representation of this award.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg gen_Georgiev.jpg (82.7 KB, 10 views)
File Type: jpg polk.ValeriIvanov_R.jpg (15.2 KB, 9 views)

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Old 04-10-2011, 06:03 PM   #7
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

Here is Bulgarian ambassador to Macedonia General Miho Mihov wearing the 1993 variation of the badge.
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File Type: jpg Mihov.jpg (8.4 KB, 7 views)
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Old 04-10-2011, 08:24 PM   #8
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

Here is General Zlatan Stoykov, Bulgarian Chief of Defence in November 2006 at the EAPC/MC Session of the Military Committee of NATO. Although he graduated in 1980 he was wearing a contemporary badge. He is also wearing the miniatures of the Order "For Loyal Service Under The Banner" 1st and 2nd Class. The second picture is Colonel Stancho Stanchev wearing a Silver Class 2000's version of the badge with his new Balkan allies.
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File Type: jpg GeneralsNATO.jpg (95.4 KB, 8 views)
File Type: jpg Stanchev.jpg (26.0 KB, 8 views)
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:02 AM   #9
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2011

After "playing" with the current variation of the Academy graduation badge, I found it to be of the poorest construction of any badge I have ever come across. I don't know if the one I have is an "emergency gap filler" but the "For Bravery" order and swords are very flat cut metal attached to the main body of the badge with a thick strip of double sided sticky tape. Suffice to say it didn't last too long being so (and even without playing with it the tape will perish). Some glue soon fixed the problem, didn't the factory have any? The factory in question is Зариан-5 in Sofia. After seeing the quality of this particular badge I would never order any other items from them never mind the highest national military academy graduation badge. The screwplate has even been threaded right so it fits at an angle too. If I'd just spent years working on graduating and received this I would be quite disheartened.
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Old 09-26-2016, 11:53 AM   #10
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Re: G. S. Rakovski Academy Badges 1912-2012.

Here is a photo of the Rakovski badge I own, it strikes me as curious in that it has a pre-1971 seal mounted on what seems to be a post-1971 rhombus. Is this a common enough occurence or is it something cobbled together by the seller?
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File Type: jpg P9242973.jpg (49.2 KB, 6 views)
File Type: jpg P9242974.jpg (49.7 KB, 4 views)
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