This is a true story and it is the story of Nadia Dunkin. In the beginning of communism many members of the intelligence in Bulgaria were either shot or brought as prisoners with no sentence to the forced labor camps. One of them was Nadia Dunkin – a beautiful and talented Bulgarian actress that most probably fell victim of the envy of her colleagues who passed the news that she spoke against the party.

Nadia Dunkin in the forced labor camps

Taken with no explanation from her home, brought to the police station, then on a train and to a forced labor camp in 1959, Nadia has experienced and survived two of them, the one in Lovech and the one in Skravena. The system of re-education was the following, they beat you up until you fall unconscious in the very beginning and if you survive, you become a labor force. The prisoners used to load stones of 30, 40, 50 kg each. And if they could’t perform their duties, they used to get 20 whips each.

When left alone, prisoners used to ask each other “Why are we here? Does anybody know? Why?” Whenever the guards used to beat Nadia up with whips she used to cover her eyes with hands in order to keep her eyesight. The worst used to be when the guards screamed at them “With the stones run!”. The prisoners were forced to run in a circle holding heavy stones until one by one they started dropping the stones, they stumbled and fell unconscious. Among the guards there were women but merciless.

After democracy begins in 1989, Nadia is among the few prisoners left still alive that are set free. She is the chief witness of the prosecution and the only woman that is ready to testify in court against the guards and the ones in charge. Few days before the trial at the age of 81 Nadia is attacked at her home and killed. The trial has been suspended, perpetrators never found, no more witnesses that survived the forced camps are willing to testify. But we will remember Nadia Dunkin. May you rest in peace!