Viktor Orbán crashed the party: the hosts were not pleased

A few days ago some Hungarian newspaper reporters discovered that, according to an international Russian-language site called Birzhevoi Lider, Viktor Orbán turned up uninvited–and unwelcome–in Vilnius last Sunday on the last day of a joint NATO exercise called “Iron Sword 2014.”

The story was more than media gossip. The press secretary of Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitè confirmed that Orbán had not been invited to sit in the grandstand for the military parade marking the end of an almost two-week-long military exercise against a possible attack on Lithuania from the East. Moreover, the president had no intention of meeting him. According to the article, an unannounced visit by a leading politician on such an occasion is considered to be an affront to the host country. The journalists of Birzhevoi Lider asked Laurynas Kasčiūnas, a political scientist who apparently is normally not at all critical of Orbán, for a comment. Even he was taken aback by Orbán’s brazen behavior. He pointed out that we all know why Orbán is now so eager to show his loyalty to his NATO allies, but “the European community no longer falls for Orbán’s gimmicks because Europeans have not forgotten that it is Hungary which supports Putin in Europe and that it was Budapest that stopped supplying gas to Ukraine.”

Source Magyar Nemzet / Photo Andrinus Ufartas/ MTI-EPA

Source Magyar Nemzet / Photo Andrinus Ufartas/ MTI-EPA

NATO began preparing for the defense of the Baltic States as early as 2010, right after Russia invaded Georgia. In the wake of the Russian annexation of Crimea, NATO decided to have a larger presence in the area. The first American paratroopers arrived in April and since then an international NATO battalion has been assembled in Lithuania. This task force includes 140 members of Hungary’s 5th István Bocskai Infantry Brigade.

It is a well-known fact that the leading politicians of Poland and the Baltic states have had serious differences of opinion with Viktor Orbán over his pro-Russian stand. Lithuanians were especially vocal in their condemnation of the Hungarian prime minister. You may recall Orbán’s opposition to the EU sanctions against Russia when he described the decision as a grave mistake, “shooting oneself in the foot.” In response, the Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevčius quipped that “it was better to shoot oneself in the foot than to let oneself be shot in the head.”

The president of Lithuania, Dalia Grybauskaitè, called the Iron Lady at home, is said to be ready to fight the Russians gun in hand if necessary. She is no friend of Putin, whom she described as someone who “uses nationality as a pretext to conquer territory with military means. That’s exactly what Stalin and Hitler did.” She is also a confirmed believer in the European Union. After all, she served as commissioner of education and culture in the first Barroso Commission and later as commissioner for financial programming and the budget. She has been president of Lithuania since 2009. She ran as an independent but with conservative support. “She wants to put permanent boots on the ground in the Baltics to ward off any potential threat from their Soviet-era master.” And the Lithuanian people seem to be equally determined. Her willingness to take up arms has encouraged others to follow suit. There has been a sharp rise in paramilitary recruits. During the weekend civilians receive military training. Students, businessmen, civil servants, journalists, and even politicians have joined the government-sponsored Lithuania Riflemen’s Union. These people are determined. So, for Orbán to make an uninvited appearance there was a serious diplomatic faux pas.

Almost all of the above information comes from English-language sources. Hungarian reporting on the military contingent in Lithuania is practically nonexistent. On November 4 Válasz ran a brief, fairly meaningless article on the military exercises in which soldiers from nine NATO member states are participating. In it Bálint Ablonczy showed off his Google skills, explaining who Silvestras Žukauskas was and noting that the large military center close to the city of Pabrade, near the Belarus border, bears this general’s name. I guess it was safer to talk about Žukauskas’s role in the 1918-1919 Soviet-Lithuanian war than to say something meaningful about Hungary’s participation in these NATO exercises.

Otherwise, nothing. Except we learned from Csaba Hende, minister of defense, after his return from Vilnius that the small Hungarian contingent did fantastically well. Among the troops of the nine participating states the Hungarians were first “according to all indicators.” It is hard to know what kinds of “indicators” Hende is talking about. We don’t even know whether there was such a ranking. Sorry to be so skeptical, but for a long time now government statements have not been credible. Lacking outside verification, we cannot distinguish fact from fiction–and perhaps government officials can’t either.

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GW
Guest

It is the height of irresponsibility and likely a breach of NATO alliance secrecy for the Hungarian Minister of Defense to make public any statements — whether true or fabricated — about the relative readiness of national troops in an alliance exercise. I strongly suspect that many of the NATO member states have deep concerns about the reliability and commitment to alliance secrecy of their erstwhile Treaty partner, Hungary. In a potential conflict with Russia, what internal NATO information can be considered safe when in Hungarian hands?

liliom26
Guest

What’s next? Orban will try jump the the fence of the White House to see Obama? I want to tape it when he yells with two rotweilers hanging off his ass: “I want an interpreter!!!”

Mutt
Guest

Oops. That eas me …

Karl Pfeifer
Guest

Orbán does not care about NATO alliance, offending the Baltic States or the USA. The main thing is to remain godfather and to show those schmucks, who believe in him, that he is the smartest politician, who will lead the country with the help of Russia, China and Turkey to national glory.
Those schmucks like to dream about Greater Hungary, they love the colorful uniforms, the symbols of national Grandeur. They do not care about those millions of Hungarians, who are very poor.
In addition, Orbán and his ilk are telling them about the great world conspiracy against Hungary.
And they believe it.

Józsa János
Guest

Dear backbitters of my country, Hungary! You know, the God have eyes everywhere and he could see yours bad heart, and he know about yours dissoluted souls, he know what is yours object, what is yours purpose to make untrues, he know what is yous pourposes to make unfair pronouncements about our leader Orbán, who was choosinged in a legal and true ELECTION!
This informations is injurious and insulting my country nation, disobliging my people!
We are a tranquil people, we trusting in God and in true of our good feelings.
Who have any snuff in Hungary, why he goes in USA to cry this snuff? Our problems we could resolv in Hungary, not in USA! USA have others problems to resolv, the suprimated blackman’s problem, for exemples. And not to say, that Obama is the president, and there be resolved the black man’s problem in USA!

Józsa János
Guest

Karl Pfeifer Why you have your busines? What is your problem with my country, or my country’s leader Orbán?
For exemple I could have a problem with your country, because may fathe’s brother was kiled the american bomb in the second World War, when he saved the Budapest’s walls.
But, i know what is the honor to make for others nations, what you could not!

Józsa János
Guest

Liliom, szégyellhetnéd a pofádat, ha volna egy kis becsület benned, szégyelhetnéd magad, hogy itt osztod az észt, és elárulod Magyarországot. Azt hiszed Amerikát érdekli a magyar nép élete? Amerikának meg van a maga baja, pl a színesbőrüek elnyomása, a szegény emberek jogainak semmibe vétele, az ellenzék sarokba szorítása, – mindez Amerika! legkisebb gondjuk is nagyobb a te problémádnál, csak, hogy tudd! Hazaáruló semmirekellők itt ássák alá Magyarország hírnevét. De szerencsére az amerikai emberek nem hülyék, tudják. hogy a hazaárulók semmi emberek!

Webber
Guest

@Józsa János
Government = country? Government = people?
Since when?
This blog is critical of the current Hungarian government. The author of it has never written anything negative about the Hungarian people or about Hungary.
I recall that many people criticized the Hungarian government before 2010, in English as well as Hungarian, and nobody said they were criticizing Hungary or criticizing the Hungarian people.

Karl Pfeifer
Guest

Thank you Józsa János, you have illustrated how one who believes in Orbán is thinking and writing.
Please keep up the good work.

Köszönöm Józsa János, Ön megmutatja hogy gondolkodik és hogy ir egy Orbánhivö.
Kérem folytassa jó munkáját.

Marcel Dé (@MarcelD10)
Guest

Dear Dr. Balogh, it seems that the first link in your article is the victim of an url injection, likely by somebody whose “signature” you’ll recognize.

It seems rather innocuous for the time being, but you might want to contact the support at wordpress.com.

Robert Fairhurst
Guest

Well Jozsa Janos that was brilliant. I hope you were being ironic. Particularly the part about how we Hungarians believe in god (less than 50%). Keep up the good work and stick to reading Magyar Nemzet rather than intelligent blogs like Eva’s

Marcel Dé (@MarcelD10)
Guest

A short video of Orbán & Deutsch in Vilnius. It’s tough to be an unorthodox!

http://bit.ly/12eS036

Józsa János
Guest

I’m a simple man, who is not a partyman, I have no an organization party, that to be theirs devoted brown-nosed, like you robert, or Karl, or Webber, Yes you’re the socialists or the liberalist’s cocksucker.
My party is only the neighbours friend clique. And we have the right to say haw we wana ti live, and we not need yours opinion about tgat. WHO is living in USA is your busines how he wana to live, but … wr are thinking too that.
Dear blackbitters of my country, you are may country’ enemy, you made the Orbán to won in every Election, because you make liying in USA and no one hav to vote for coutry enemies.
Sok senkiházi Soros bérenc, hazaáruló majmok. Igen, a pénznek nincsen szaga, ti mindenre kaphatók vagytok!
Azt hiszitek Amerika megoldja a ti problémátokat? Amerika nem fog szavazni a ti disznóságaitokra, minél több rágalmazást küldtök a világba, annál kevesebb az esélye annak, hogy Magyarországon a nép rátok szavazzon. Ti segítitek Orbánt a bársonyszékbe, ti vagytok Magyarország igazi ellenségei!

dvhr
Guest

Józsa János: “Soros bérenc” You mean, Orban?

Karl Pfeifer
Guest

Józsa János, I do not believe anymore that you are an Orbánbeliever. You hide under this good Hungarian name, but I presume, you are a Je….-Ro..-Ho……..-Leftwinger who wants to make fun of Orbán and his ilk. Shame on you, you want us to think that those who believe in Orbán are morons.

Józsa János
Guest

Dear Pfeifer Karl, Is your right to belive in the things what you want to belive. But I’m not have itching ears for that.
You are a libeller of my country Hungary, that is my problem about you.
Be honest and take your mouth about may homland! It’s time to push off!
I was educated to respect others states and others peoples.
Shame on you, I say, to have busines in my life. My life is my busines, Our life is our bargainor.
I respect your country, be good and make it too with my country, with my loved homeland.

Webber
Guest

@Józsa János – I didn’t insult you. You insulted me. Why? We don’t know each other. You know nothing about me. You owe me an apology.
As to your other comments, you can read articles criticizing the American government every day in the Hungarian press. Do you see Americans making comments like yours in reaction to such articles?

Webber
Guest

P.S. If you don’t like what you’re reading here, why are you here? There’s a lot of other stuff to read on the net.

Józsa János
Guest

dvhr! My answer is: I mean you and yours friends are the automatuos Orbán’s yellow jaundiced dogs in the manger!
Yours pay down man is Soros György the multimilliarder from USA, who wana to have influence in Hungary, but the hungarian people is not fool, like many others peoples cheated by this man.

Józsa János
Guest

Weber!
Stop the untruth what you’re lying here and your friends too.
Why !’m here?
because you make wrong for my homeland in USA, stop your injourious activity and make your busines!
Wer living is democracy and peace in Hungary, Don’t you lie! it is wrong to tell lkies!

Brimful of Asha
Guest

Hungary is on the verge of destruction. Only the Habsburg empire kept them alive. since the disintegration of the empire they are only walking towards the final disaster..
To sum it up: Trianon, Bela Kun, Horthy and now Orban. Dependancy on some Attila like leader will be your end

Bogumil
Guest

GW:

I hope this was a rhetoric question and not a real one (thus I hope you are not so naive), because the answer is painfully obvious. No, the secrets would not be safe.

The Russians penetrated the entire Hungarian state administration and no part is cheaper than the army and the defense ministry. At least within the ministries where big procurements are decided the various oligarch factions enforce silence and loyalty. There just isn’t such a disciplinarian at the Defense Ministry.

I guess NATO knows it well too that there are just too many member states to keep secrets but especially the new member states, such as Hungary are unreliable.

Look, Orban is on the payroll of Russia just as Ukraine’s leaders were for decades, why would anybody assume that the flow of information from Hungary would exclude military info?

Is it perhaps because Orban still personally assures our “allies” and prime ministers of NATO don’t lie?? Muhahahahah.

edgar
Guest

Janos Jozsa is a troll if ever there was one. Please don’t feed him.

tappanch
Guest

Here is another real estate scandal involving Fidesz faction leader and former (2006-2014) mayor of district 5. of Budapest Antal ArRogan.

The local government sold a building to the companion [élettárs] of a mobster named Portik at half price in 2011. Portik was sentenced to 11 years for murder.

http://www.blikk.hu/blikk_aktualis/portik-elettarsanak-adtak-el-olcson-uzletet-roganek-2308463

Józsa János
Guest

Kit érdekel ez debil tappancs?
Itthon pofázz, ott mind mondhatod, a lőtéri kutyát nem érdekli! Tanulmányozd Amerika történelmét, az amerikai politikusok például a vasút építésénél sok ezer milliárd dollárt loptak, s kit érdekel ez? A nép lenyelte, mint minden disznóságot, mert le kell nyelnie, mást nem tehet. Amerikában minden második ember rendőr, vagy börtönőr, vagy civil nyomozó, biztonsági fegyveres vagy katona. A fél Amerika vigyáz a másik félre, ezt nevezitek ti demokráciának? Mindenki befogja a pofáját, mert ha pofázik kinyírják ott is!

Józsa János
Guest

USA is a conqueror of the World, and the american goverment wana to have the World in theires hand, but there are unothers strogers peoples and will make stoping this invader mashination!

tappanch
Guest

North Korean flags fly in district 3. Is Kim Jong-un about to visit his fellow dictator?

comment image

No. It is the shooting of a movie. Hungary resembles North Korea to a movie director.

http://444.hu/2014/11/29/rejtely-mi-tortenik-bekasmegyeren-epp/

Guest

Karl Pfeifer: “Shame on you, you want us to think that those who believe in Orbán are morons.”

Józsa János’ language is not moronic. It is made up.in the style of Finnegans Wake.

Webber
Guest

Meanwhile, in Hungary, the government press is attacking protest organizers, including those mentioned by Eva in a previous post in this blog. http://index.hu/belfold/2014/11/28/egy_masik_tuntetesszervezore_is_raszallt_a_hir_tv/

tappanch
Guest

“Le style est l’homme même”

Georges-Louis Leclerc, comte de Buffon (1707-1788)

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