Monthly Archives: May 2012

The Janus-faced Viktor Orbán

More and more critics of the current Hungarian government claim that Viktor Orbán has completely lost his sense of reality. I don’t agree. No, in my opinion he is simply lying to the Hungarian people in the hope that perhaps the old political trick will work. The more you repeat certain slogans the more likely they will stick.

No, Orbán knows that he is in big trouble and that’s why he talks so much about “success,”  “victory,”  and the bright future that awaits Hungarians. One just has to wait a … Read the rest

Fidesz and MSZP: neck and neck

Since the middle of the month several polls measuring party preferences have appeared. Ipsos, the first to report among the pollsters, measured a downward trend for Fidesz and an upward one for MSZP. At that point, among the adult population eligible to vote Fidesz led with 16%, MSZP followed with 13% while the undecided moved up from 51% to 54%.

Ten days later Századvég, a team close to Fidesz, found that the government party had a substantial lead. According to them 24% of the adult population would vote Fidesz and … Read the rest

War against the whole world?

The growing Horthy cult and the associated rehabilitation of writers of anti-Semitic and/or Nazi sympathies have raised a few eyebrows, and not just in Romania where the circus surrounding the reburial of the remains of József Nyirő led to a diplomatic flare-up between Hungary and her former good friend, Romania. It seems that the Russian government is also watching the rehabilitation of the Horthy era with growing concern.

But first let’s visit Romania where the storm created by Hungary’s clumsy attempt at organizing a reburial of József Nyirő has been … Read the rest

Far-right propaganda on Hungarian public television

A few weeks ago an incredible “documentary” was shown on MTV entitled “War against the Hungarian nation.” The production is available on YouTube. I don’t know whether anyone will have the patience to listen to the entire hour and a half of nonsense, I certainly didn’t. But I heard enough to be horrified at the message that is being sent far and wide by Hungarian “public” television. What is especially frightening is that 43,357 people have already watched this far-right view of Hungary, past and present. Two-hundred and thirty … Read the rest

Cultural isolation of the Hungarian right and Hungary’s political quarantine

It was about a year ago that Bohut Pahor, prime minister of Slovenia, made a rather undiplomatic remark to reporters that after Hungary’s presidency of the European Union is over “Hungary will be isolated” as a result of Viktor Orbán’s behavior and policies. Pahor added that Orbán was ignored even before July 1, 2011, the end of Hungary’s six-month tenure.

A few months later HVG noted that the Slovenian prime minister seemed to know what he was talking about. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán received practically no invitation from other political … Read the rest

János Kádár (May 26, 1912 – July 6, 1989)

It was one hundred years ago today that János Kádár (originally János József Csermanek) was born as the illegitimate child of Borbála Csermanek, a chambermaid in the fashionable seaside resort of Fiume, today Rijeka. He died at the age of 77 on July 6, 1989, the same day the Hungarian Supreme Court announced the rehabilitation of Imre Nagy and his closest collaborators during the 1956 revolution.  His burial was attended by tens of thousands of Hungarians, whose grief seemed genuine.

A few days later Imre Nagy, the victim of Kádár, … Read the rest

Removal of another thorn in the Orbán government’s side: The Lex Éger

I don’t think that it is an exaggeration to say that one of the reasons, perhaps the most important one, for the demise of the Gyurcsány government was its failed attempt at health care reform. The struggle between reformers and those who opposed the changes introduced by Lajos Molnár (SZDSZ), minister of health, in the fall of 2006 was intensified by the fierce opposition to the reforms by the Hungarian Medical Association (Magyar Orvosi Kamara/MOK) led by István Éger.

István Éger, president of the Hungarian Medical Association

Fidesz and MOK … Read the rest