Recently in the spotlight

Milán Rózsa (1988-2014)

The death of Milán Rózsa, Hungary’s Harvey Milk

Milán Rózsa was born just a year before the fall of the Berlin Wall, in 1988. He had no personal experience fighting for rights and freedoms, something that an earlier generation of young Hungarians had engaged in, during the last years of the Kádár regime. Yet over the past four years, Mr. Rózsa became one of the most prominent and […]

by · November 8, 2014 · Focus
Four men sit round the tax man and blow smoke in his face / C. Wellcome. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

A tale of two countries’ corrupt prime ministers

Just for once, let’s state the obvious: It is very likely that the prime minister of Hungary, Viktor Orbán, not only knew everything about the US corruption charges — knew who were the accused, knew what they were accused of, knew what they actually did, and knew the evidence the US had against them, but, by far the most important […]

by · November 7, 2014 · Politics
The Reunification of the Two Koreas at the Katona József Színház in Budapest. Photo: Beatrix Gergely.

Budapest theatre tackles The Reunification of the Two Koreas

Joël Pommerat is one of the most dynamic and complex directors of contemporary French theatre. And this time his piece entitled The Reunification of the Two Koreas has made its way to Budapest, where it is being directed by Gábor Máté, with starring roles for János Kulka, Alexandra Borbély and Eszter Ónodi. Mr. Pommerat is no “run-of-the-mill” director and playwright. (Perhaps […]

by · November 6, 2014 · Culture
Blue represents counties that supporter Mr. Johannis, while those in red voted for Mr. Ponta. The two Hungarian-majority counties of Székelyföld, or Szeklerland, voted for Mr. Kelemen, of RMDSZ. Illustration produced by Transindex.ro and based on 98% of the votes.

Romanian presidential election: Transylvanian German to take on Ponta in second round

The main Hungarian candidate in the first round of voting in Romania’s presidential election – Hunor Kelemen of the centrist Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania (RMDSZ) – received only 3.50% of the vote on Sunday, but came out on top in the country’s two Hungarian majority counties, namely: Hargita (Harghita) and Kovászna (Covasna). The right-wing Transylvanian Hungarian People’s Party […]

by · November 4, 2014 · East
The extreme right Historica band lays flowers at the 1956 monument in Los Angeles.

Pro-Jobbik band in California — Sponsored by the Orbán Government

The monument of the Hungarian Freedom Fighter stands at the edge of MacArthur Park in Los Angeles. It was inaugurated and blessed by Cardinal Mindszenty of Hungary in 1974; today this corner of the park is named after him. Each October, Hungarian Americans gather here to commemorate the 1956 Revolution, dignitaries give speeches and lay a wreath on the monument. […]

by · November 3, 2014 · Diaspora
The serf's duties. Feudal England, circa 1310.

Education reform: A plan to keep the population vulnerable and poor

With all the chatter and protest around the Internet tax (the implementation of which has been merely postponed until 2015), little attention has been given to the Orbán government’s rather insidious plans to “reform” the country’s education system. Fortunately, Népszabadság – the country’s most widely-read daily newspaper of record – published an analysis of what is likely in store for Hungary’s […]

by · November 2, 2014 · Politics
Zoltán Vass

Hungary’s honorary consul in Vancouver resigns over dictatorial Orbán regime

Zoltán Vass, Hungary’s honorary consul in Vancouver, Canada, announced his resignation today, Budapest-based Klubrádió reported. Mr. Vass decided to resign in protest over two deep concerns that he had, regarding how Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s government was operating both at home, but also in the Hungarian Canadian diaspora. “The Orbán government has incrementally destroyed the pillars of democracy and continues to […]

by · October 30, 2014 · Diaspora
Home Alone / Sandeep Khedkar.

Ákos Gergely Balogh: Alone against the world

The central crisis management of the ‘central power field’ has taken on a rather unique turn. The politicians and their key backers are also displaying mighty strange signs of what they are able to actually process of the world. What we get includes: slow, cautious backing out, the labeling of the American chargé d’affaires as a fifth-rate CIA agent and […]

by · October 30, 2014 · Focus
Orange Fog / Credit: jarr1520 (Flickr)

Gellért Rajcsányi: My three excruciating questions about Fidesz

1.  How did Fidesz, the party which stood up against the ‘yes-man’ parties that roamed the corridors of power, the same parties that were essentially Mamelukes, and which shook their fists at the West, winking instead at the East, parties that played to the choirs of Kádár’s people, that rejected the civic ethos, that understood ever less of the modern […]

by · October 30, 2014 · Politics
Bálint Ódor

The Democratic Charter addresses Hungarian Ambassador Bálint Ódor

Dear Dr. Ódor, The Canadian Hungarian Democratic Charter has read with interest your address to Hungarian Canadians, published on the website of Hungary’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. As you may know, we are a civil rights group comprised of academics from both Canada and the United States who have been critical of the decline of democratic checks and balances in […]

by · October 29, 2014 · Diaspora