Béla Biszku

Treating a war criminal at the Budapest Jewish Hospital

Béla Biszku, who died at age 94 last week, was Hungary’s most infamous unrepentant hard-line communist and the only official of the former pre-1989 regime ever prosecuted for crimes against humanity. Biszku served in the Hungarian Workers’ Party (Magyar Dolgozók Pártja) from 1949, as well as in its successor, the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party (Magyar Szocialista Munkáspárt – MSZMP), including […]

by · April 4, 2016 · Focus
Omar Adam Sayfo

Omar Sayfo: On Islamophobia and on its beneficial effects

Omar Adam Sayfo is a PhD candidate at the University of Utrecht, and foreign affairs columnist at Hungary’s pro-Orbán Demokrata weekly. His most recent piece, published on the Mandiner website and translated into English below for HFP’s readers, offers a glimpse into the thinking of supporters of Hungary’s Orbán government, when it comes to issues of racism, Islamophobia, liberalism and […]

by · March 20, 2016 · Focus
Alex Dodds abruptly resigned from MOL Group.

Hungary’s MOL Oil Group – Bad investments and uncertain future

A couple of months ago the Hungarian oil firm MOL Group made the surprise announcement that its executive vice-president of exploration and production, Alex Dodds, was quitting. Mr. Dodds helped to mastermind MOL’s “brilliant strategy” to build interests in Kurdistan and the UK North Sea region Years ago Mr. Dodds’ name appeared in British tabloids when he has sustained head […]

by · February 28, 2016 · Focus
Roma in Tiszavasvári. Photo: Dániel Németh / Magyar Narancs

Panic breaks out in a Hungarian Roma community

Panic broke out on Tuesday in the eastern Hungarian town of Tiszavasvári, with parents storming into the local school and kindergarten to take home children, as news spread that the local municipal government, led by far-right mayor Erik Fülöp, was planning to take Roma children into state care. According to official statistics, 9% of the town’s population of 12,840 is […]

by · February 16, 2016 · Focus
Twenty thousand protests in Kossuth square on February 13th, 2016. Photo: Tamás Kovács/MTI.

Twenty thousand protest Orbán’s education policies in Budapest

More than twenty thousand teachers, school administrators, students, parents and union activists took to the very rainy streets of Budapest on Saturday morning, and marched together from Jászai Mari tér, near Budapest’s Margaret Bridge, to Parliament. The mass demonstration is the largest since the series of so-called “internet protests” in 2014, when tens of thousands marched in opposition to the […]

by · February 13, 2016 · Focus
Teachers, parents and students march in the northeastern city of Miskolc on February 3rd. Photo: MTI.

Hungary’s government is traumatizing teachers, students and parents

More than 5,000 teachers, students and parents took to the streets of Miskolc last week, in what may have been a first in modern Hungarian history, to demand that the Orbán regime in Budapest end its heavily centralized and authoritarian approach to public education, where teachers and school administrators are stripped of all autonomy and where they are ordered to […]

by · February 8, 2016 · Focus
Rabbi Reuven Bulka

Remembering the Holocaust–We can’t be silent bystanders when faced with injustice

One cannot be a passive bystander when faced with injustice or oppression–this was the overarching message of a Holocaust commemoration and candle-lighting, organized at the Ottawa City Hall on February 1st, 2016. This year’s commemoration, which was spearheaded by Vera Gara, a Holocaust survivor of Hungarian origins, included a wide range of speakers, notably religious leaders from different faith communities, […]

by · February 2, 2016 · Focus
Yad Vashem

A crook amongst the righteous

I last wrote about Zoltán Harangi four years ago in Hungary’s Élet és Irodalom weekly magazine, as well as in a publication entitled Beszélő, arguing that Mr. Harangi’s despicable activities during the Second World War deserve special attention, even within the context of the many inhumane acts committed during the conflict. As a member of the Swedish Red Cross in Budapest, […]

by · January 20, 2016 · Focus
Pastor Pamela Kurtz

Rev. Pamela Kurtz: We cannot be silent in the face of fascism

I am a Christian and a United Methodist pastor. With the recent terror attacks, many leaders of the nation I love, some of whom identify as Christian, are espousing action that is antithetical to the principles of our nation and the Christian faith with which they identify. I cannot let them be the voice of all Christians. They are not. […]

by · January 8, 2016 · Focus
Ákos Kovács during his Echo TV interview.

Ákos Kovács – A Hungarian pop icon’s jaw-dropping sexism

Ákos Kovács is one of contemporary Hungary’s most established singers and songwriters, with over two decades of experience and fame under his belt, not to mention a prestigious Kossuth Award from the Government of Hungary. Ákos – as he is simply known in public – is also well-known for his conservative political and social views and there is nothing necessarily wrong with […]

by · December 17, 2015 · Focus