It was on March 2 that I reported on the strange letter by Zsolt Bayer, a vile Fidesz propagandist, to Gábor Vona, leader of Jobbik. It was an open letter. Hungarians love to write open letters. If you recall, I mentioned two former Fidesz party faithfuls who are now in the top leadership of Jobbik. Bayer rather mournfully recalled the good old days when he and his old buddies got together to drink and exchange ideas in the Turul Circle and blamed them for deserting the cause and turning against Orbán and Fidesz.
The two men in question were prompted by Bayer's letter to write pieces in the new Jobbik paper Barikád. Sándor Pörzse excoriated Bayer in language straight from Bayer's foul-mouthed playbook. The most polite adjectives are "pitiful and untalented." Pál Losonczy refused to answer Bayer directly because he finds Bayer so contemptible. He did report, however, that the Turul Circle is alive and well and that ten of them, with the exception of Bayer, are still friends.
However, the story doesn't end here. Yesterday on Gábor Vona's website appeared another open letter, not to Zsolt Bayer but straight to his boss, Viktor Orbán. After all, says Vona, he is not a naive man and therefore he knows that although the letter might have been signed by Bayer it was Viktor Orbán who dictated it. He was taught by his parents that if he had problems he had to take care of them himself and not to send messages through someone else. "Because a decent Hungarian handles his affairs this way. But Mr. Chairman [of Fidesz], you didn't do that." The logical conclusion is that Orbán is not a decent Hungarian.
Then he moved on to the question of the recent Fidesz attack on Jobbik. First came László Kövér's damaging remarks against Vona's party. Usually it is his job within the party leadership to express strong opinions. But, says Vona, that didn't work. In fact, Kövér's attacks on Jobbik had the opposite result: the number of Jobbik supporters has grown since. "So the dirty work is now given out to the lunar halo" (holdudvar). In Hungarian politics those belong to the "lunar halo" who are not directly involved in politics but who by and large support the party through their writings and public utterances.
Then Vona brings up the question of "twenty years for twenty years" and that Bayer took exception to including Fidesz's four years in power in the twenty years that have elapsed since the change of regime. Admittedly the 1998-2002 period was better than the rest but that's not saying much. Better than what? Better than Antall, Horn, Gyurcsány, or Bajnai? "You are also responsible for the last eight years." Because Fidesz during this period was passive and cowardly. Moreover, they were part and parcel of the dirty deals conducted behind the scenes. Vona thinks that "the Fidesz parliamentary members should have resigned in the fall of 2006…. You were hiding for eight solid years escaping from responsibility."
Vona then moves on to the question of why he joined Orbán's civic circle in 2002. Answer: "because you invited me … [and] because I believed in you…. But much more important is why I left in 2003. Because I recognized my naivete about the real purpose of these circles. That the goal was not the strengthening of the national right, the creation of a new age's foundation; they were aimed solely at the reorganization of a right-liberal party in which I didn't want to take part. I left, although I'm sure that if I had stayed in the company of the hangers-on I would have received a fat job. But I wanted something entirely different. Something better. Jobbik." (In Hungarian "Jobbat. Jobbikat.")
He proudly points out that Jobbik managed "to bury SZDSZ and here is the opportunity to bury MSZP." At "this historic moment" Fidesz should work hand in hand with Jobbik and instead Fidesz attacks the party. "It is pitiful to watch your agony." Orbán's party uses the most contemptible weapons. For example, Fidesz tries to convince the world that Jobbik is collaborating with "presumed terrorists." Here the adjective "presumed" is noteworthy. There is compelling evidence that the Arrows of Hungarians committed crimes and and were plotting the assassination of politicians. Among the people accused of belonging to this terrorist group is a Jobbik politician who not only supplied the ammunition used against the house of one of the victims but was also on site during the attack. Krisztina Morvai steadfastly defends the mastermind behind Arrows of Hungarians, György Budaházy.
The real insult was left to the end. Vona repeated an old Orbán saying that "the eagle doesn't try to catch flies" uttered in connection with his negotiations with József Torgyán. Now Vona had a piece of advice to Orbán: "You ought to realilze that times have changed. You are no longer the lord of the flies. And we are no longer flies that can be frightened away by a couple of smacks in the face." Vona calls upon Orbán to have a television debate but if he refuse "we will meet in parliament after May where you will have to answer."
This is a serious situation for Fidesz; most likely they moved against Jobbik far too late. The latest poll claims that with first-time voters Fidesz has only one opponent, Jobbik, and that Jobbik has twice as many potential voters as MSZP. The prospects are rather frightening and not only for MSZP.