Politics

Ambassador Ódor and Hungary’s Contempt for Human Rights:  Making Excuses Instead of Amends

Ambassador Ódor and Hungary’s Contempt for Human Rights: Making Excuses Instead of Amends

Hungary’s ambassador to Canada, Bálint Ódor,  sent letters to the editor to various Canadian news outlets, in which he attempted to whitewash the shockingly vicious actions of his xenophobic government against Syrian refugees and blamed the media and other EU member states for the crisis. Here is a response from Professor Stevan Harnad: The Ódor excuses are rank and all-too-familiar […]

by · September 9, 2015 · Politics
Source: Zsolt Szigetváry / MTI.

The Dictator’s Bog-Standard M.O.

It is by now patently obvious that the refugee “crisis” that Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has artificially and systematically created had 3 goals: (1) to divert attention from Orbán’s many mounting corruption scandals, (2) to re-assert and reinforce Orbán’s populistic self-image as the nation’s protector against the invasion of the Turks and the exploitation by the EU and (3) […]

by · September 7, 2015 · Politics
Zsolt Enyedi

Zsolt Enyedi at UC Berkeley – Hungary’s challenge to liberal democracy

Zsolt Enyedi, Professor of Political Science at Central European University Budapest, will speak at the University of California at Berkeley on September 2, 12-1:30 p.m., 270 Stephens Hall. (Details here.) For some of us it is becoming clear that Fidesz is pursuing the same far-right policies as Jobbik, Hungary’s neo-Nazi party, and the country is slowly becoming a totalitarian state. […]

by · September 2, 2015 · Politics
Fortress Europe. Source: caef.org.uk.

Europe’s shame–Reflections on the sick, old and inward-looking European Union

Despite the fact that thousands of refugees are arriving in Hungary, the average citizen hardly notices this crisis. Although one can see Afghans and Syrians at major railway stations, the majority of people are not faced directly with the problem. And this is quite simply because the majority of those arriving in Hungary end up leaving the country within a […]

by · August 23, 2015 · Politics
László Kövér is hiding his Communist past.

Ex-Communist László Kövér has no business dedicating Catholic chapel

The August 29th dedication of the new Chapel (Magyarok Nagyasszonya kápolna) at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC will start with a Solemn Mass celebrated by Cardinal Wuerl of Washington and Cardinal Erdő of Esztergom-Budapest. Readings and choral pieces will be both in English and in Hungarian. This could be a wonderful religious […]

by · August 22, 2015 · Politics
Dr. András Göllner

András Göllner: Comparing Canada’s Harper to Orbán relativizes predatory rule in Hungary

Popular talk radio host György Bolgár of Hungary’s Klubrádió interviewed Professor András Göllner, founder of the Canadian Hungarian Democratic Charter (CHDC) on Wednesday. (Part 1 is available here, and Part 2 here.) The Montreal-based academic and civil liberties activist was asked to speak to an article appearing in the New York Times, in which Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is presented […]

by · August 19, 2015 · Politics
Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

Ex-Communist admirer of fascists László Kövér to dedicate Catholic Chapel in Washington DC

László Kövér is 55 years old. He is the Speaker of the Hungarian National Assembly and also a founding member of the ruling Fidesz party. He started his remarkable political career as a junior “apparatchik” of the Hungarian Communist Politburo in 1986. Born into a Communist family, he earned a law degree, and his contacts propelled him into a job […]

by · August 17, 2015 · Politics
András Heisler, President of the Hungarian Federation of Jewish Communities (MAZSIHISZ) greets János Lázár, Minister of the Prime Minister's Office. Photo: Péter Gyula Horváth.

Hungary’s government warns Jewish community about Muslim refugees

Officials from Hungary’s Orbán government, including Minister of Human Resources Zoltán Balog, met with Jewish community leaders this week to discuss new efforts to improve Holocaust education in Hungarian schools and to alert Hungarian Jews to the fact that they too may be “impacted” by the continued wave of refugees, arriving primarily from war-torn Syria and Afghanistan. Based on the […]

by · August 13, 2015 · Politics
The two Vic(k)tors: Victor Ponta of Romania (left) and Viktor Orbán of Hungary (right).

Growing diplomatic row between Hungary and Romania

In the doldrums of summer, there is a growing and increasingly public conflict between Hungary’s Orbán government and the Ponta administration in Romania. In just the past two days, the diplomatic representatives of the  two countries, serving in Budapest and Bucharest, have been summoned by the respective foreign ministries of the two EU member states and both are claiming that […]

by · August 11, 2015 · Politics
Negotiations with Metzger. Left: Mr. Viktor Orbán, current Finance Minister Mr. Mihály Varga, ex-New York Consul General Mr. Károly Dán, Mr. György Szabó (MAZSÖK) – Right: Rabbi Oberlander, Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger (in hat), Rabbi Köves and Rabbi Raskin of Budapest Chabad.

Was Israel’s former Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger a lobbyist for Orbán?

Politics makes strange bedfellows. And this may be the case in the unexpected alliance between former Israeli Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi, Yona Metzger, and Hungary’s Orbán Government. In November 2013 Rabbi Yona Metzger was arrested in Israel on suspicion of corruption and the Magistrate’s Court ordered him to be kept in custody. According to investigators, Rabbi Metzger accepted bribes of an […]

by · August 6, 2015 · Politics