Budapest politicians tour new Holocaust museum, described as “shocking”

Historian Mária Schmidt introduced the mayor of Budapest’s 8th District and local city councillors to the almost completed new Holocaust museum, called the “House of Fates–European Education Centre” (in Hungarian: Sorsok Háza: Európai Oktatási Központ). The interpretive centre, housed in an abandoned train station and created with 6.6 billion forints ($25 million) in state support, relies heavily on personal stories to recount the history of the Holocaust. Following the visit, Fidesz Mayor Máté Kocsis noted that he hopes the museum would become a “world-class” interpretive centre, that would draw visitors to the district, putting this traditionally economically depressed part of Budapest on the cultural map. Mr. Kocsic added that the House of Fates, as a cultural institution, will become the “pride of the district.” Mayor Kocsis expects that the district’s high school students would be among the regular visitors.

“The 8th District has traditionally been home to a large Jewish community. As such, I would hope that local middle school and high school students would be able to discover a tragic part of their history,” said Mr. Kocsis. The museum’s permanent exhibit will focus on the impact of the Holocaust on youth and on children.

Mr. Kocsis said that he found the museum’s exterior design “shocking,” when he first saw it. The building certainly is very visible and even though it was still under construction when I visited Budapest this past March, the massive metal star–symbolizing the yellow star that Hungarian Jews had to wear starting in April 1944–looms over the street and the tram stop across from the museum.

House of Fates - Budapest: as seen in March 2015. Photo: Christopher Adam.

House of Fates – Budapest: as seen in March 2015. Photo: Christopher Adam.

House of Fates - Budapest, with the star (symbolizing the yellow star) looming over the street in front of the building. Photo: Christopher Adam

House of Fates – Budapest, with the star (symbolizing the yellow star) looming over Kerepesi street in front of the building in March 2015. Photo: Christopher Adam

“The knowledge that this museum will share with our youth is indispensable for the young people of today,” added Mr. Kocsis, who at just 34 years of age is, himself, among the youngest mayors in Hungary. “Hungarian youth, students and children need to learn that there are some periods in Hungarian history, when our Hungarian compatriots and our Jewish compatriots faced struggles that would be unacceptable at any point in time. And we need to understand that this pain and these tragedies destroyed families,” added Mayor Kocsis, who cautiously avoided broaching the issue of Hungarian culpability in the Holocaust and seemed to stress, as the museum likely will as well, the official government narrative of collective, Hungarian victimhood following Nazi Germany’s occupation of Hungary on March 19th, 1944.

Mayor Máté Kocsis tours the House of Fates museum.

Mayor Máté Kocsis tours the House of Fates museum.

The House of Fates museum is controversial. Hungary’s Jewish community was not involved in the initial discussions around the museum’s conceptual design, which date back to late 2013. Then earlier this year, the Prime Minister’s Office, led by minister János Lázár who has had an on-going conflict with historian Mária Schmidt, asked for written input on the planned museum from historians and Jewish community leaders, only to discover that most respondents felt that the interpretive centre was not conceptually sound. Mr. Lázár circulated a background document provided to him by Ms. Schmidt, but which apparently was not intended for wider distribution.

The Prime Minister’s Office emphasized that the centre could only open if it met with the approval of historians and Jewish community organizations, to which Ms. Schmidt suggested that Minister Lázár was attempting to “publicly discredit” the project, and that perhaps his advisor on matters pertaining to the Jewish minority, Gusztáv Zoltai, was driving these efforts. Mr. Zoltai is the controversial former leader of Hungary’s largest Jewish community umbrella organization, known by the acronym MAZSIHISZ, and a former member of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party, which ruled Hungary during the pre-1989 dictatorship. Mr. Zoltai’s decision to now collaborate with the Orbán government was met with widespread anger within much of the Jewish community and in the opposition.

It is not yet known when the museum might be able to open to the public. Nor is it clear whether it will attract many visitors, beyond school groups, considering that it is located quite a distance (a metro ride and then a tram ride) from the relatively small inner ring of Budapest that is most frequented by tourists.

10 Comments

  1. During the first Orban government the decision was made to construct a Holocaust Museum. The leaders of this effort Mr. Vero Gabor and Mr. Horn Emil (both deceased) wanted to build it in an abandoned synagogue located in Rumbach utca which is part of the Jewish district (and getto) also near the functioning largest synogogue. The government officials decided to put it in Pava utca well out of downtown “out of sight” (visited by less than a thousand visitors annually)now the same thing happened with the House of Fates. This is part of the denial process, an official policy of the government.

  2. I said it once and I think it is good to repeat again at a proper place; the holocaust is not over yet!!!!!!!

    It is not history yet.The Nazis did not lose WW2. Germany lost but not the Nazis. They are here, they are trying hard to start ww3, they are building their huge underground shelter-cities (some have already be destroyed / remember the unexplainable earthquake in Washington) they are busy building new concentration camps and are planning another holocaust and a full scale human genocide. Financed and engineered by the elite.

    “The 95% of human population must go.” – David Rockefeller. He financed Hitler (Hitler was a Rothschild).
    He launched his genocide program in 1976. In his latest interview he said the project is well advancing. He got two warnings since then. Once his son was killed Jun 13, 2014 and now Dave Goldberg. Yet they are defiant.

    The original document.
    http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1976/eirv03n21-19760525/eirv03n21-19760525_015-rockefellers_club_of_rome_launch.pdf

    In the U.S. they are provoking civilian unrest in order to introduce the state of emergency. FEMA and FEMA concentration camps.
    All they do is building concentration camps as they are going to save 500 million human lives. The genocide is just going to begin unless the Nazis are stopped.

    The holocaust is not over!!!!!!!!!

  3. Richard,

    Go to the nearest mental hospital, you need help!!!

    • Slowly man, slowly, we will see who will end up where.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8TcMC7ZQ_6w

      “FEMA CAMPS- They’re planning to kill everyone and here’s how”

    • Let’s go on Dr. Koczor psychiatrist.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUl7nDNsr6c
      “US Soldier Exposes USA FEMA Camps”

    • Hi Dr. Koczor,

      still here? Just a few one as I’m not going to misuse this discussion board. You can find out more about it and if you still think that the holocaust nightmare is over then you might as well take your own priceless advice and attend the nearest psychiatry.

      http://endthelie.com/2012/04/12/first-new-concentration-camps-in-europe-set-to-sprout-on-greek-soil/

      “First new concentration camps in Europe set to sprout on Greek soil”

      • Avatar Liz Aucoin says:

        Have you even read the actual document for Agenda 21? I have and there is no evidence about what you speak of, there are a lot of conspiracy theorists that have claimed to “interpret” similar to what you are claiming. There is no doubt in my mind that countries around the world will be putting people into refugee camps and detention camps known as FEMA camps, if there is a world wide emergency, however, there is no real evidence of the conspiracies you talk about as well as the loonies that posted the videos you posted links to. Also, take note how all of this was supposed to happen in 2013 and another mentions universal martial law starting at the end of 2014. Well, we are now in nearly mid 2015 and there is still no WWIII. I have no doubt it will happen and I also have no doubt there will be mass migration as a result which will lead people into these camps. But to say that it will give the governments an opportunity to “depopulate” the planet is far fetched in my opinion.

        • Yes, “I has consprcy thery.” Someone created this slogan to complete the lies and people gratefully jump on it. “Oh its just another conspiracy theory, lets forget it we are safe, our government protects us let’s lay back in the arms of someone”. And they sit down in front of their TV to watch the news to get to know more about the world and when they stand up they know less, but they just don’t realize.

          For the start please read Cathy O’Brien book “Trans Formation of America” (not Transformation) coauthor Mark Phillips (big name you know him) to get to know a little what’s going on in the White House and the CIA. Learn about the Pentagon. Learn about Fukushima, learn about 9/11. It stabs your eyes, can’t you see? A fragile aluminum airplane even its thin fragile wings enters a hard steel heavy duty building instead of becoming an accordion denying Newton’s law of motion. Yes you’ll believe the TV instead of your own eyes or common sense. Then comes a clear controlled demolition of the tower with clearly visible smaller explosions on the lower floor. It’s all conspiracy. Don’t believe your eyes!! You are safe!!! More than 600 000 children and adults go missing in the U.S. every year, the authorities cover the cases. Not enough? whooaa new challenge spreading on FB calling teenage kids to play a game and get lost for three days without contacting their parents or relatives. No evidence. All loonies.All conspiracy.

          Dachau? Is just becoming another conspiracy theory. Can’t you see?

          Now lets’ go back to the original topic. Fascism is back, it has never gone. The camps are back they have never gone. And I’m still not talking about Dulce base or projects like that.

          How could Hitler make it?

          He could make it because no sober words and warnings had effect. There were many. No one listened to them. Looney whistle blowers,
          conspiracy theory, everything is all right. Where are all the the skeptical? In the graveyard.
          Where have all the flowers gone? Oh when will they ever learn?

          Now, devote a few months or a year of your time and learn about what is going on behind our back and understand what I am talking about. If you ever interested in that. Not mandatory, though.

          http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/timstanley/100273640/european-fascism-has-returned-it-never-went-away-and-it-probably-never-will/

  4. Avatar Charlie London says:

    The falsification of history continues in Hungary.

    Anything ‘historian’ Mária Schmidt is involved in results in the ‘truth’ being a coincidence.

    From the Terror Haza – where to this foreigner it just showed a jumbled up message “we were invaded by the Germans, then the Soviets”….. Completely useless for any historical understanding.

    To the bizarrely named House of Fates – misunderstanding and misquoting one of Hungary’s poets, I believe.

    And of course the driving force behind the hideous Eagle and Gabriel statue in Freedom Square.

    As a tourist you would be well advised to strike off your visit list anything Mária Schmidt has had a say in.

    She’s bonkers.

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