Orbán’s new super fence

It took less than an hour after Viktor Orbán said that a second “more massive” fence will soon be built along the Serbian-Hungarian border for all the major newspapers in the world to report his announcement. If we can believe the Hungarian prime minister, practically everything is ready for the work to begin. This new structure, he claims, is necessary in case the present arrangement between Turkey and the European Union unravels for one reason or another. It could easily happen that 100,000 migrants would storm the existing fence, which couldn’t withstand that kind of pressure. But the one the Hungarian government is going to install will be so advanced technically that “it will be able to stop several hundreds of thousands of people at one time.”

The text of the interview that took place during the early morning show of Magyar Rádió, Hungary’s state radio, is still not available on the prime minister’s website, so I have to rely on summaries that appeared in the Hungarian media. According to them, Orbán assured his audience that “not even a bird will be able to fly into Hungary without control.” He continued: “The borders cannot be defended with flowers and stuffed animals. The borders must be defended with fences, with policemen, with soldiers, and with weapons.”

Commentators immediately questioned the need for another fence because the present one has reduced the flow considerably. And, as I noted yesterday, the few who get through leave the country at the very first opportunity. Some observers are convinced that the announcement of a second fence was designed solely to serve Orbán’s domestic political agenda. He desperately wants to make sure that the October 2 referendum is valid, and the prospect of hundreds of thousands migrants attacking the country’s border might make voters more eager to cast their votes in the referendum.

Others pointed out that fences, no matter how many there are, are never foolproof, especially if we are talking about the more than one hundred thousand people Orbán envisages. Index, in an article titled “One fence is no fence but sometimes not even three are enough,” told the story of the fences at Melilla, a Spanish autonomous city located on the north coast of Africa, sharing a border with Morocco. A migrant must first climb a six-meter fence, then a three-meter one, followed by another six-meter one. A daunting but not impossible task. From the thousands who storm the triple fence a not insignificant number succeed. See the video. In 2014 February about 200 managed to enter the town of Melilla. In 2015, 50 people made it.

The infamous triple fence at Malilla

The infamous triple fence at Melilla

László Toroczkai, the Jobbik mayor of the border village of Ásotthalom, who himself organized irregular volunteers who went to hunt for refugees, is naturally quite pleased with the announcement. He believes that the new fence will be 2.0-2.5 meters from the existing one and that it can easily be patrolled, especially since thermographic cameras are already installed along the border. On the other hand, engineers are convinced that only a reinforced concrete wall could withstand the pressure exerted by crowds of that size. Experts questioned by Népszabadság could think only of the Berlin Wall as something allegedly foolproof, but even that couldn’t withstand a crowd of one hundred thousand.

The government has kept plans for this new structure a secret from the parliamentary committee dealing with defense and police matters, according to Ágnes Vadai, DK member of the committee. She said that members of the committee should have been notified if there is a danger of the arrival of a hundred thousand people, but no such information reached the committee. In her opinion, there is a very good possibility that this particular issue will never get before the committee because Hungary has been under a nationwide state of emergency ever since March and therefore the law governing public procurement has been suspended.

Months ago Magyar Nemzet asked the prime minister’s office for a detailed list of expenses in connection with building the fence along the Serbian-Hungarian and Croatian-Hungarian borders. What they got the other day was difficult to decipher, mostly because the details were sketchy and sloppy. The documents do suggest, however, that approximately 12.6 billion forints ($45.7 million) have been spent so far. If Orbán actually carries out his announced plan to build a more massive fence or wall, the cost will rise sharply. It is an enormous waste of money.

The Hungarian government likes to parade as the defender of Christian Europe from the Muslim hordes, but the fact is that Hungary’s fences haven’t deterred refugees from entering the territory of the European Union. If they can’t enter through Hungary, they will find some other route. Surely, a fence or a wall a few hundred kilometers in length will not solve the problem. Countries that act individually to protect their own borders only force other countries to pick up the slack. Unfortunately, Viktor Orbán refuses to endorse any common policy to resolve this serious human and political crisis. If it depended on him (and if so much money weren’t at stake in the form of EU subsidies), he would abolish the institution of the European Commission and would place all the power in the hands of the 28 leaders of the individual member states. That would, of course, be the death of the idea of a United Europe.

August 26, 2016
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petofi
Guest

Sometimes, speed reading could lead to an odd revelation:

I first read…”The borders can be defended with feces…

Tomas
Guest

I guss they can be. If you throw Victor Orban over a border, that’s basically what you get.

Doy
Guest

Feces the refugees leave on the streets and squares of Germany. Long leave AfD!

Member

According to the Wikipedia, in 2015, the highest number of first time applicants was registered in Germany (with 441,800 applicants, or 35% of all applicants in EU states), followed by Hungary (174,400, or 14%), Sweden (156,100, or 12%), Austria (85,500, or 7%), Italy (83,200, or 7%) and France (70,600, or 6%).

So Hungary registered 174,400, with fence numero uno up, and NONE of the refugees wanted to stay in this wonderful country.

Also this is the 14% of the total first time registration. So how exactly Hungary is “protecting” the EU from the migrants?

Just how many fences will satisfy Orban the Fifth? Is this the same thing as his toy train in Felcsut (his home village), where he built a useless local train from stolen EU money and when he was criticized, he said they will build even more just because they can? There will be fences around the fences.

dos929
Guest

When Merkel et al will learn not to rub shoulders and appear in public with this filth? When will they have the courage to openly denounce the Orban regime? When will they stop giving away their own tax paying citizens hard earned money to a totalitarian mafia regime of Orban? When will they wake up to Orban’s 1984? WHEN?

Member

@dos929

Probably never.

Guest

When will Hungarians wake up?

Doy
Guest

Never. To your liking. And more and more Europeans are waking up to follow the Hungarian way. Just wait for October 2 to see the Austrian way of electing Herr Hofer. Then you can start drawing your parallels with the “darkest chapters” of European history. Then comes Wilders. Then comes Marine. Who will have friendly ties with trump.

Guest

My sentiments exactly, dos929!

Jean P.
Guest

” If Orbán actually carries out his announced plan to build a more massive fence or wall, the cost will rise sharply.”

The law of diminishig returns.

Guest

Very clever, Jean P!

Guest

Much more important than the silly idiotic games Orbán is playing with his country :

Mrs Merkel met the Visegrad4 yesterday and the German papers are full of comments – not very complimentary for the East Europeans!
Of course there also were critical remarks on Mrs Merkel everybody agrees about the East Europeans and wonders what they expect from the EU.

They are called all kinds of things and asked about their Christianity and (lack of …) solidarity and …

And the prevailing point is – they are not really Europeans, they’re in the EU only for the money!

As I’ve written before, some people are already questioning the EU’s expansion to the East – let them leave for Putin’s Eurasian Union!

Why should we Germans give billions of €s every years to those ungrateful bastards – you hear that every day now!

Doy
Guest

You are absolutely right. Hungary should not have joined the EU and it would not be the poor country with four million people below… You know… It should have stayed out and adopted a Singapore-type authoritarian model of development.

webber
Guest

If Hungary were inhabited by Singaporeans, it might work.

Where’s the miracle growth now, hmmm? EU funds poured into the country. Where have they gone? Hungary has an independent national government, doesn’t it? A sovereign government?

So where’s the growth?

Doy
Guest

Jews think that even Tamils or Malaysians are more industrious than Sopronites. But only Jews think that. There are no “Singaporeans”, you nitwit.

webber
Guest

Citizens of Singapore are called Singaporeans, you idiot.

ivo
Guest

Why do people think that there is a *causation* between Singapore’s economic situation and an authoritarian political system? Hungary had that system for 45 years and it didn’t work. Hey, it doesn’t work in Russia either even though it is being helped by natural resources (there is at least a reserve for spending).

One may “choose” that “model”, but whether it is successful is another question. It’s ridiculous to think that Hungary can be anything like Singapre. Only people who have never been to Asia can think that. And Russian trolls.

Moreover geography matters. Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Japan have not many neighbors where people can easily find jobs (as in Austria for example, but Germany is also close by) or import the cheaper goods from if domestic prices are artificially high to protect industries.

And so on. Even the idea is totally ridiculous.

Janos Mandarin
Guest

You are an idiot. Of course that Hungary could not profit from a communist dictatorship, and that the South Asian countries you list did profit from their authoritarian system. If Hungary could have chosen the Singaporean model in 1990, it would be much further ahead on the read than it is today. You really are a racist and think that an average Hungarian is dimmer than an average Tamil?

Observer
Guest

Poor cretin.

Alex Kuli
Guest

The original interview with Orban is available here:

http://www.mediaklikk.hu/radio-lejatszo-kossuth/?date=2016-08-26_06:00:00&ch=mr1

The media player does not give time codes, but the interview begins at exactly half way through. (07:30)

As usual, Orban begins by talking about sports. Maybe he got the wrong idea about “fencing.”

Guest

Thank you Éva for this article, and especially the film at the end of the blog, under the comments!

Immigrants trying to enter Spain are living a nightmare, as if the hardships and danger they endured in their home countires were not enough.
It would seem that our desperado mafia chappy, Orbi, has taken a leaf out of the Spanish government’s book, by bulding fences in HUngary, and now escalating the racism and vilonece by establishing self-appointed vigilante groups, who have been given the go-ahead to commit any number of violent atrocities against immigrants.

Wouldn’t it be interesting if Orbán, just for once, followed and emulated a positive and good example from a foreign country? But I won’t hold my breath since it would go against the grain of our selfish and greedy tin-pot dictator, who encourages violence in order to feed his self-interest.

Guest from Slovakia
Guest

“…but the fact is that Hungary’s fences haven’t deterred refugees from entering the territory of the European Union. If they can’t enter through Hungary, they will find some other route. Surely, a fence or a wall a few hundred kilometers in length will not solve the problem.”

It was never the intent of “hungarian fence” to stop the migrant flow into whole of Europe. The intent was to stop the migrant flow into Hungary – one would think its obvious, well, probably, it isnt, for some people at least. Everything aroung it is just a political narrative or PR. Exactly the opposite – fence or wall solves the problem!!! Another question should be asked instead: why are western politicians repeatedly saying to their people the fences are not solution when it is obviously not the truth?

Have you ever tried to answer that question?

Bowen
Guest

“It was never the intent of “hungarian fence” to stop the migrant flow into whole of Europe. The intent was to stop the migrant flow into Hungary …”

Given that practically zero refugees want to stay in Hungary for any longer than is necessary, then what’s the problem with allowing them over the border?

Perhaps the Hungarian government could spend billions of forints on private limousines, transporting the refugees to the Austrian border, or wherever it is they want to do? It would be a lot cheaper than endless fences and propaganda campaigns.

Ever tried to answer that question?

Guest

Bowen, It’s no use trying to reason with our new Slovak troll. Ineo-liberal economical concepts used in the West 30, 40, 50 years ago and outdated long ago stopped when I read
neo-liberal economical concepts used in the West 30, 40, 50 years ago and outdated long ago …

Guest from Slovakia
Guest

…Outdated long ago in the time they were applicated in eastern european countries (after the fall of soviet bloc). However, I am still awaiting first true argument from you. Up to this moment – nothing.

Guest from Slovakia
Guest
Are you serious? There are several very good reasons to stop them: 1/ you could end up with Hungary full of migrants if the destination countries (Germany, Austria, Sweden,…) simply closed their borders because of overburdening themselves with migrants. Typical case: Greece! In such a case you would be dependant on the good will of destination state to inform you ahead of changing the border regime or on the good will of other states (relocation of your migrants). 2/ Despite how hard you try it is simply unable to watch all those people migrating through your territory and to eliminate all security risks (you cant watch them all). 3/ By not stopping the migration flow you only make it stronger! Because the news of a “free way” through your country simply spreads out accross the world and more and more people will use it. 4/ Last but not least (in fact this is the most important reason of all): as a state you have to demonstrate you are able to control your own territory and to prevent uncontrolled migration across the land. What Germany has demostrated since autumn 2015 is a total resignation on regular state behaviour – such politicians… Read more »
Tomas
Guest

I never knew Sankt Petersburg was in Slovakia.

Doy
Guest

Where do you see S. Petersburg?

Guest

And “one would think it’s obvious” that you have not been reading the papers, Guest from Slovakia, so please find here todays latest about Orbi-

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/aug/26/hungarys-pm-plans-more-massive-fence-to-keep-out-migrants

He never mentions Hungary, but only that his razor fence, and the use of violence against migrants is wholly in the interest of Europe and European values.

And “one would think it’s obvious”, that our Orbi gives not a fig about any democratic or Christian values, either abroad or here, since he systematically erodes and destroys them in Hungary.

Guest from Slovakia
Guest

Of course he does. Just as German chancellor Merkel always speaks about protection of European values despite promoting German national interests. Thats the way politics is being made in present-day Europe. Thats the way the public opinion is being won in present-day Europe. When USA invade country they never say its because of their national interests but they always do it “only” to remove some terrific dictator or free people from oppression or whatsoever.

Wake up people, thats the politics…

Guest

Re: ‘…German chancellor Merkel always speaks about protection of European values despite promoting German national interests. Thats the way politics is being made in present-day Europe. Thats the way the public opinion is being won in present-day Europe’

Absolutely. Somebody has to speak up to defend German and European ‘interests’. We have two fellows with her in the big sandbox there. One continually throws wet sand at Merkel. He thinks he’s always at the Balaton with the gal. The other a propensity to keep grabbing more of the sandbox. What a duo who refuse to ‘play well’ with others. At bottom Euro ‘pitas’ and I’m not talking bread.

Guest

Since you believe all the Fidesz hate propoganda about the EU, you will be very happy when Hungary will be finally thrown out.

Doy
Guest

Unfortunately, this will not happen before the final collapse of this laughing stocke code named union.

PALIKA
Guest

Any person lawfully in a Schengen country can enter Hungary. The fact is that OV’s fences stop migrants entering Hungary from the south but not into or from the EU. However it is not exactly the kind of country the migrants want to live in. Too poor for their liking.

Bowen
Guest

A few months ago, I had the chance to speak to some refugees who were at that time in Hungary. I asked them for their first impressions of the country. One of them (from Kabul), said that he thought Hungary was a very poor country.

Doy
Guest

Oh, fantastic. Just like myself saying the same thing about Afghanistan when I arrived there as a refugee from poor Hungary.

webber
Guest

After they visit Turkey, Hungary does not look rich (go to Ankara or Istanbul if you don’t believe me). And when they see Austria, they never want to go back to Hungary.

Doy
Guest

You are absolutely right. They should end up in Monaco. Or, better, Qatar.

Doy
Guest

I love those choosy refugees fleeing for saving their lives, and not stoppong in Turkey or Italy. They should hurry to Sweden before it closes up completely.

webber
Guest

Since they have fled for their lives, why shouldn’t they want to settle in the nicest country possible?

It’s what millions of refugees from Romania did after the Ceausescu regime fell – most Transylvanian Hungarians I know are still planning to work in Germany, not Hungary.

Doy
Guest

Becsuse they are not fleeing for their lives. If I were fleeing for my life, I would stop in the first safe place.

webber
Guest

and then, when you build up your strength, you might look around at the lousy refugee camp and think “I believe I might try to get out of here and get to Germany. A fellow from my village is there, and he’s living well.”

webber
Guest

After all, it’s what a lot of Transylvanian Hungarians used to do, and it’s what a whole lot of Hungarians from Hungary are doing these days.

Doy
Guest

First, a huge community of Transylvanian refugees live here, and there are those, just like Hungarians born within the borders, who work or study abroad. They are compared to migrants only by liberal Jews. It is common knowledge in Hungary. And it is also a common knowledge that Jews love to call them “Rumanians” to cause anger in Hungarians. I love that because this makes it prohibitive for many Hungarians to vote for DK and its ilk.

webber
Guest

Oh? Then how do you explain the failure of the referendum in Hungary on giving Transylvanians citizenship?
The majority of ethnic Hungarians in Hungary did not vote for it.
I well remember the signs at some shops in Transylvania saying Hungarians (from Hungary) would not be served after that referendum.

Anyway, what about all the Hungarians leaving Hungary now, hmmm?

Doy
Guest

That is why Orban builds fences along borders with non-Schengen countries. It has the duty to do so.

Guest
Re: the obsession of ‘protection’ from an impending ‘dis-ease’ The great American writer Edgar Allan Poe looked at this in his ‘Masque of the Red Death’. Indeed it would appear Orban as a modern day Prince Prospero is morbidly intent in sequestering a nation behind his ‘castellated abbey’ so as to keep them supposedly safe and free from the ‘piros’ plague. It could be a dubious solution as the country once again plans to cut themselves off in their relationship to a perceived hostile outside world. As if extremely static solutions with fences and ‘curtains’ could be so easy to hold off and deter a major issue of our age from being so isolated from within as without. Developing some critical rationality toward the migrant issue would seem to be the better response to the mass event. But some of the high thinking faculties look as if they’ve gone missing. Fear has taken over. One day perhaps the ‘Prince’ will be stunned to find the struggle will overtake him. By then it could be too late as that isolation which sought to protect will bring the downfall. The takeaway: in books as in life there are always more than one… Read more »
tappanch
Guest

Undersecretary Soltesz announced today that the number of students in parochial schools grew by 81% in the last 6 years, while the number of schools went up by 60%. The majority of the students (53%) go the Catholic, while 24% to Calvinist schools.

http://magyaridok.hu/belfold/tobb-mint-ketszazezren-jarnak-egyhazi-iskolaba-950866/

Guest

Francis is no doubt looking at that. Explains alot of things. Here they’re barely afloat in areas since demographics goes against the trend.

Guest
A bit OT – maybe I’ve already written about this: I lost faith in religion when I was six years old. I was anxious to go to school with my friends (neighbours’ sons) and devastated when my parents told me that they were going to another school … 67 years ago in 1949 Germany had only (!) parochial schools, at least in Schwab country – our little town had a catholic school (five classes for 8 years) and a protestant school with three classes for years, because it had been part of Austria 250 years ago, so the majority of inhabitants were still catholic, while Württemberg had a protestant majority. The crazy thing about this: Both schools were in the same building, the old schoolhouse had been divided by a wall and of course we had different times for rest, so there was no contact with the heretics! Many years later at the Gymnasium we tried to discuss this situation with our principal who was an ardent catholic (I called him a clerical fascist – but only later …) and he forbade any discussion – he also was a council member for the Christian Democrats who at that time were… Read more »
Guest
Re: ‘I lost my religion when I was six years old’ Fascinating how youth and the paths it gives to follow on affects one’s look onto the world. Looking back to those days religion encompassed much in my life due to the Magyars who I was surrounded by both in my personal life and in the extended community such as school like yourself. Religious practice in fact was just as natural as breathing. And those who were part of it (at least for me) did not have any agenda other than following certain precepts which would bring communities and individuals closer together through charity and love. There was a magnificent integrity that they had. And further that life entailed assessing ‘vocation’. And that was one for everybody to figure it all out personally in their calling. In Magyarorszag today it looks like that is happening. Yet the thing is it seems a big muck up. ‘Religion’ unfortunately has been hijacked by stewards who seem to have failed to interpret their injunctions. Arguably some can say this is all restrictive in a way but for that matter all humans are literally the products of early environments and learn things from it.… Read more »
Doy
Guest

Horrible! Dictatorship! Lauder Yavne? Oh, no!

Tomas
Guest

Can you build a fence around Victor Orban? Crazy assholes like him or that Polish MP Szydlo or whatever, refuse quota relocation, and instead prefer to run guardhouse countries for the richer EU member states! While posing as eurosceptics! How stupid can their voters be?

Doy
Guest

Crazy assholes like your neocons who have caused all today’s immigration to Europe by destroying country after country.

Observer
Guest

Hungary is the country that is being destroyed and robbed blind: from front runner with Slovenia it is now struggling to stay ahead of Romania.
12 billion Forints on fences is still peanuts to the 260 billion stolen in the Takarek Bank, Qvestor, etc brokers, all under the auspices of the Orban/Matolcsy.
The dupes are paying and some even cheering here.

Tomas
Guest

It’s not only for intimidating incoming people, I think. Such a fence will work great when the return to stalinism is complete and when the Hungarians will have their passports taken away.

Doy
Guest

Sure. Wait for that.

Doy
Guest

I love the Danish People’s Party. Like most of the Danes.

webber
Guest

Like 21% of the Danes. That’s not “most” by any count.

Doy
Guest

An interesting feature, compared to other Danish parties, is that the Danish People’s Party is usually underrepresented by about 1-1.5 % in opinion polls. Election researchers have suggested that the party’s voters may be less interested in politics, and therefore declining to talk to pollsters, or that voters are reluctant to reveal their support for the party to pollsters.[67]

Doy
Guest

As a matter of course, it will remain the most popular in this ultra-tolerant Nordic country about which Jews stopped talking.

webber
Guest

Just FYI, 21% is the share DPP got in the last elections in Denmark, where the ballot is secret, not open.
Again, 21% is not a majority, but a minority, by any count.

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