Horthy apologist Lajos Kósa and his hateful rhetoric is not welcome in California

The Hungarian Reformed Church, San Francisco & Vicinity, and the United Hungarian House in Los Angeles have invited Mr. Lajos Kósa a politician of Hungary’s ruling party Fidesz to be the guest at the upcoming 1956 commemoration. Mr. Kósa has never been invited to North America by a US or Canadian politician, in fact Mr. Kósa has never been invited anywhere in the West. He is one of the most unpopular (and perhaps among the most corrupt) politicians of the ruling Fidesz party, even so he is not banned from entry to the US. (Read more here about US entry ban of Hungarians.)

Born in Debrecen 53 years ago, Mr. Kósa was the long-time mayor of his town and also an MP since 1998. He served on several parliamentary committees and became a key leader of Fidesz’s parliamentary faction. Recently he stepped down from the party leadership position and was appointed minister without a portfolio overseeing the “Modern Cities” program.

Mr. Lajos Kósa (right) with Prime Minister Viktor Orbán (middle)

Mr. Kósa’s nickname is Mr. Twenty Percent, referring to the bribe he allegedly expects for building projects in his hometown. He is not shy about his racist and anti-Muslim views and often makes anti-Semitic comments; he also admires Putin. Some defend Kósa by saying that the “loud-mouth” politician has no ideological agenda; he is just repeating ruling Fidesz party slogans a hundred times louder. Debrecen was in the headlines recently when the city’s university honored Russian President Putin! The chancellor of the university is a protégée of Mr. Kósa.

Mayor Kósa’s bust was on display in Debrecen

Mr. Kósa’s crowning achievement is the political machine of Debrecen which consistently delivers the votes to his Fidesz party. For example, the city has its own TV channel, a wonderful propaganda tool for Fidesz. It was run by a close ally of Kósa, Mr. Tamás Széles whose hard work was rewarded last year with the Hungarian Consul General position in Los Angeles. Another Kósa ally was city council member Mr. Attila Danku. After Mr. Danku’s untimely death last January, Mr. Kósa has rewarded his son, also called Attila Danku. The young man ended up in California working for Mr. Széles and recently travelled to the Berkeley University to discredit Mr. Bálint Magyar, a political opponent of the Fidesz party. The young Attila Danku and his wife are both Presbyters at the Hungarian Reformed Church, which is located in Redwood City, CA, and they have paid back Kósa’s favor by inviting him to speak at the Church. (Read more here about the Berkeley event.)

This is the Hungarian way – favors for favors. Friends promoting and helping each other from Debrecen while discrediting political opponents.

Mr. Kósa also admires Albert Wass, a fascist and convicted WWII criminal. On February 15, 2008 he gave a rousing speech when Debrecen decided to erect a statue of the anti-Semitic writer. His city also celebrated pro-Hitler Miklós Horthy with a plaque which was installed on the wall of the historic Kollégium building. In a television interview Mr. Kósa defended Debrecen’s Horthy-cult and the dictator’s responsibility in Holocaust mass-murders by saying that United States also mass-murdered the Amerindians! For those who speak Hungarian I highly recommend Mr. Kósa’s almost surreal interview. (Watch here.)

In 2012 young people demonstrated against the Horthy plaque at the Debrecen Kollégium building – the sign reads “Never again Horthy”.

I find it simply shocking that in 2017 Californians, American citizens of Hungarian origin, invite a Hungarian politician who embraces fascists like Wass and Horthy. The Horthy regime declared war on the United States in 1941 and Mr. Kósa’s invitation is an insult to all Americans especially to veterans. This is a political provocation and we have to step up against it. I have no doubts that the vast majority of Hungarian Americans agree with me.

Church and state are separated in the American system. It seems that several Hungarian Reformed Churches in California might violate the law. While enjoying the tax benefits of religious institutions they appear to be engaged in political lobbying for the Orbán government. They should stop providing platform for racist and pro-fascist ideas!



I call on Rev. Gábor Magyari-Köpe, Hungarian Reformed Church and Mr. Miklós Pereházy of the United Hungarian House to rescind Mr. Kósa’s invitation and find another suitable speaker for the occasion. We also ask our readers to contact Hungary’s new Ambassador in Washington DC, Mr. László Szabó (ambassador.was@mfa.gov.hu) to protest Mr. Kósa’s invitation.

By the way, Mr. Szabó is also from Debrecen…

György Lázár

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