Imre Nagy statue removed predawn from Budapest square

Imre Nagy is a hero of Hungary, prime minister twice, his second term during the tragic and failed revolution of 1956. Nagy was captured and tried by the Communists and executed in 1958. He was buried in an unmarked grave. Nagy’s name could not to be mentioned during the Kádár regime. At his reburial in 1989 a crowd of 200,000 gathered at Heroes’ Square to listen Viktor Orbán’s passionate speech. Nagy became a symbol of the new, free Hungary. His statue, facing the Parliament was installed next to Kossuth Square.

We woke up today to a grey, foggy winter morning and heard the news that Nagy’s statue was removed overnight. My wife and I immediately went out to Kossuth tér; the statue was gone indeed.

Photo: György Lázár

Photo: György Lázár

I asked the lonely city worker who was cleaning the pool where the statue had stood. He told me that it happened at 4:00AM.

Did they use a big crane? – I ask. No, no – he explained – they cut it. Lifted the statue and cut the metal bridge into pieces. He shows the now empty metal bolt holes used to stabilize the structure. They did a professional job – I compliment. Yes – he said – it was done in an hour.

Photo: György Lázár

Mihály (Michael) Károlyi’s and György (Georg) Lukács’s statues were also removed in predawn hours, and Roosevelt’s name was scratched from a major Budapest square. Now it is Imre Nagy’s turn. His anti-fascist and Communist past have became uncomfortable for the Orban regime.

Step-by-step Hungary is turning into an openly fascist state.

György Lázár

Photo: György Lázár

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