About a year ago I wrote three articles about Eduardo Rózsa-Flores, a Bolivian-born Hungarian citizen who, under still mysterious circumstances, ended up in Bolivia and was gunned down along with several of his friends. According to Bolivian authorities he and the others–Hungarian, Irish, and Croatian–were suspected of plotting the murder of Bolivia’s President Evo Morales. One Hungarian remains in a Bolivian jail.
My first piece on the subject was written on April 18, 2009, “The Hungarian far-right in Bolivia–Eduardo Rózsa-Flores,” followed by “The psyche of an ‘anarchist’: Eduardo Rózsa-Flores” on April 21, 2009. A week later more information was available and I wrote another post, “Hungarians in Bolivia.” I really didn’t think that I would have to return to the subject a year later.
We knew even then that Rózsa-Flores had been involved with Hungarian far-right circles, including Jobbik. Today a picture was made public by ATV, the television station, taken at a Jobbik meeting in 2008. On the left is Eduardo Rózsa-Flores and on the right Gábor Vona. I don’t know where ATV got hold of this picture, but a year ago it wasn’t circulating either in the print media or on the internet. Perhaps the Croatian paper Necenzurirano published it and ATV copied it from there.
In the last few weeks the Croatian paper has been publishing a series of articles about the spread of radical Islamic terrorist organizations in Europe. The last article spent quite a bit of time on the activities of these organizations in Hungary. According to the paper, Al-Qaeda and Iran began paying special attention to Hungary around 2000 and Eduardo Rózsa-Flores played an important role as an intermediary between Islamic radicals and the Hungarian far right.
The story is painfully complicated, allegedly morphing from drugs to weapons to terrorism. Let’s start with drug trafficking. Bolivia, after Colombia, is the second most important producer of cocaine. Apparently a group of Croatian immigrants headed by an Ustasha (Croatian Nazi) general, Vjekoslav Luburic, was active in passing Bolivian cocaine through Paraguay and Argentina to Canada and from there to the United States. In Canada their partner was the neoNazi group Norvalska that after the outbreak of the Balkan wars was also active in smuggling arms. Some of the people from the Norvalska group settled in Croatia. The group trafficked not only in cocaine from South America but also in opium from Afghanistan. The group allegedly became more and more involved with Muslim radicals.
Another thread in the story: a man from Sudan, Dr. Fatih el Hassanein, arrived in Vienna and from there moved to Bosnia under the protection of the Bosnian government. El Hassanein was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and later also a member of al-Qaeda. The paper claims that through El Hassanein one hundred million dollars’ worth of weapons reached Bosnia in its war against Serbia. Hassanein also established an outpost in Budapest, but in Hungary he had no trustworthy Muslims to rely on. However, in Croatia he met Eduardo Rózsa-Flores. We do know that Rózsa-Flores took part in the Serbian-Croatian war on the Croatian side. We also know that he became a Muslim.
The plot thickens. Rózsa-Flores allegedly made contact with László Toroczkai, an important figure in the Hungarian far right. He is the “president” of the Sixty-Four County Youth organization and a close friend of György Budaházy, currently in jail awaiting trial for terrorist activities. Toroczkai is also close to Gábor Vona. Toroczkai organized a paramilitary group in 1999 with a view to liberating the territories lost to Serbia as a result of the Treaty of Trianon. While organizing his guerilla organization he met Rózsa-Flores. He was hoping to learn something about the military side of things because “they knew nothing about that.” It was at that time that Toroczkai also came to know people who later established Jobbik.
According to Toroczkai, he learned that László Kövér, a leading force in Fidesz who in 1999 was in charge of the Hungarian security offices, knew about Toroczkai’s activities. He allegedly told István Csurka, head of MIÉP and then a political ally of Fidesz, that “if they weren’t his [Csurka’s] darlings involved in this organization, the National Security Office would have already taken care of them.” Csurka himself wrote about Rózsa-Flores a year ago after Flores’s death in Bolivia. He remembered that Flores got in touch with him and offered his services to MIÉP.
Toroczkai and his group of guerilla fighters might have gotten some military training, but the liberation of Serbian territories was certainly shelved. Lately Toroczkai’s name has cropped up again in connection with the Arrows of Hungarians. According to the man who managed to penetrate the group, Toroczkai was leading the political wing of the organization.
In Hungary there exists an organization called the Hungarian Islamic Community led by Zoltán Bolek. Bolek and Flores also knew each other. In fact, the two of them went to Iraq on a charitable mission at which point Rózsa-Flores got converted to Islam. Bolek is not involved with Jobbik, but his deputy is one of the editors of Jobbik’s weekly paper, Barikád. Flores until his death was close to Jobbik. A member of Jobbik told one of the Hungarian papers that Flores “shared our views.”
The following picture might make all this a bit clearer. The source once again is Necenzurirano, the Croatian newspaper.
In my opinion there is no proof that Iranian or Al-Qaeda money actually reached Jobbik, but the Croatian newspaper is quite accurate in describing the Hungarian connections: Bolek, Rózsa-Flores, Toroczkai, and Vona. As for Jobbik’s foreign policy plans, the man in charge within the party, Márton Gyöngyösi, made no secret of an eastern orientation and an opening toward the Arab world. We know that Vona visited Yemen and talked about calling in Iranian observers to watch over the coming Hungarian elections. The party is a champion of the Palestinian cause. And of course no one knows where Jobbik’s money is coming from. It seems almost inconceivable that membership dues are sufficient to cover a very extensive election campaign. Rumors have been circulating for some time about the source of Jobbik’s money. György Lázár a few months ago brought up the possibility of Iranian and earlier Iraqi money being channeled to the Hungarian far right. Now, independently from Lázár, there is another piece that provides a few more pieces to the puzzle surrounding this whole shadowy group.