Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán lashed out at the European Union in a speech on October 23 commemorating the country’s 1956 uprising against Russia.
At the event in the city of Veszprem, Orbán said: “Moscow was a tragedy, Brussels is only a poorly executed contemporary parody.
“They don’t have firearms, but they have Facebook. Our invitation was about liberation from the Soviet occupation, not about interfering in our democracy,” he said.
Orbán pointed out that the old Soviet Union used “Comrade reprimands” and said the EU similarly talked about a “conditionality procedure” with the Brussels rule-of-law procedure.
He did see a fundamental difference between Moscow and Brussels, saying: “It’s not the tanks coming in from the East, it’s the dollars coming in from the West.
“Fortunately, Brussels is not Moscow.”
Last year, the EU decided to freeze billions of euros in funds for Budapest, citing concerns about corruption in Hungary and possible embezzlement.
Orbán did have some hope: “Moscow was beyond repair, but Brussels and the European Union can be repaired,” he said, pointing to the upcoming European Parliament elections in 2024. “Europe is still alive, breathing, the life force still working in his body.
“Hungary will be the first country in Europe where we will stop the violent LGBTQ propaganda at the school gates,” he added.
After the fall of Communism in 1956, he said Hungary rejoined the community of European peoples but added that Europe is no longer the same place.
“We wanted freedom, we are free and Europe was united in the spirit of freedom. But now we have to face the fact that we mean freedom differently and that we have different visions of the free world.”
According to Orbán, Hungary and progressive Westerners have a different view of what “freedom” means. In the West, he claimed, it was some sort of escape; to leave behind who and what you are, so you can change gender, nation and identity.
“Change all your parts and put yourself together according to the latest fashion and you will be free,” he said.
In Hungary, he said it was the opposite. “We work to be who we really are.” According to Orbán, freedom is that approach. “Be who you are! Accept that you were born Hungarian, born Christian, born male or female.”
He highlighted what he said was the safety and stability of his country, pointing out it was the only nation in Europe not to have had to hold early elections in 33 years.
According to Orbán, Hungarians were sometimes too accommodating, which was why “in the end, those we saved or protected may attack us”.
“Today we were the first to protect Europe from migration, and we were the first to propose peace instead of war, which would have saved hundreds of thousands of lives.
“Even today, we are the first and only ones to stop the peoples of Europe from marching willingly, singing and blindly into another, even greater war.
“We never received thanks, appreciation, goodwill, but we often received snags, blowback, friendly fire,” he claimed.
October 23 is Hungarian Republic Day and marks the time the people of Hungary stood up against the Soviet Union in 1956 to demand democratic changes in Hungary and to gain freedom. The revolt was crushed when Moscow sent in the Red Army, killed 3,000 people, wounded 13,000 and exiled 200,000 more.
The second event marked by Republic Day is the end of Communist rule and the creation of modern Hungary in 1989 when the Soviet Union ultimately fell.
There were protests in Hungary on October 23 as thousands of opponents of Orbán took to the streets to demonstrate against the government.
Despite Orban's 100% media control, the anti-Russia protests in Hungary are growing.
Yesterday, thousands marched to the Russian Embassy chanting "Russia fuck off". pic.twitter.com/ZjgK3WjNBE
— Jay in Kyiv (@JayinKyiv) October 24, 2023