Are these guy that ignorant or even crazy? Orbán held talks with Vladimir Orlic, the president of Serbia’s National Assembly,…
I already yesterday mentioned Orbán’s short facebook statement about talking with the president of the European commission concerning Russia’s invasion in Ukraine. In yesterday’s morning hours Péter Márki-Zay called Orbán ►HU to react clearly onto the Russian aggression, to name Putin being the aggressor he is, and to stand out for the territorial integrity of Ukraine together with our allies of NATO.
For Unity for Hungary Péter Balázs, former foreign minister under Bajnai and now responsible for foreign affairs within the opposition, turned to public. He said that the situation our neighbour is in has no example past WWII, also not in the wars in former Yugoslavia, when this country broke up. With a few words and pictures from Russian military he described how Ukraine is surrounded. And that the only fault of Ukraine was to move towards Europe instead of towards Putin. He called the Hungarian government no longer to support Russian propaganda and to care about the Hungarian minority in Ukraine as well, who might need to fight against Russian troops. The government has not only to make some statements, but to act as well ►HU.
Gergely Karácsony has spoken clearly against Russian aggression as well. He reminded to the propaganda that Orbán had prevented war in Ukraine during his visit on February 1st and linked a propaganda piece stating so. Instead of being the Trojan Horse of Putin he should end the swing policy that so often hasn’t worked out for Hungary. Orbán has to call the aggressor by name ►HU.
Tímea Szabó wrote ►HU: “Russia has attacked Ukraine. Well, Orbán’s “icebreaking action” was so successful for Putin. The whole world condemns the Russian aggression, but Orbán continues to rub against Putin. Shame.”
Ákos Hadházy put pictures together with tanks of Russia today and 1956 in Budapest, of Kádár and Khrushchev and of Orbán and Putin ►picture. He calls for solidarity with Ukraine instead of friendship with aggressors.
I could go on with examples from Unity for Hungary, but the regime did not react at all during the morning hours. Also main propaganda media as Magyar Nemzet had obviously no instructions how to react. The PM would have a meeting of the national security council in the Várszínház and foreign minister a meeting in Brussels they knew to report about. In the meanwhile the EU commission worked out a suggestion how to react right now as template for the foreign ministers to discuss about later today.
It took a long time until the 1st message came about the Hungarian government. “They stressed the importance of dialogue and wanted to reconvene with [Budapest]”, a diplomat said. “It was to be expected but Orbán has now really shown his true colours. Again, this begs the question where Orbán loyalty is: to Moscow or his European allies? And the question of how much more of this blocking behaviour other leaders can swallow” The Guardian wrote ►EN.
Thereafter the minister of defence came with a strange message. Tibor Benkő said ►HU Hungary needs to prepare for all possible events and decided to place more of the Hungarian army to the border of Ukraine. If the situation in Ukraine escalates, there will be war activities not only in the Eastern part of Ukraine, but also in the areas of Kiev and Transcarpathia as well. Transcarpathia is from Russia the most remote part of Ukraine, while Kiev is not too far away from Putin’s puppet state Belarus. While Benkő talked about “humanitarian tasks,” he said that “military equipment” would be needed at the border. That tents might be needed fore refugees is understandable, but weapons? Does he know more than we do? Just for good order: Beregszász is from Donyeck 1126 km as the crow flies, Beregszász is even close to French Mulhouse! Luhanszk is even further away.
Finally late in the afternoon Orbán decided to say something. While the democratic parties made a lot of statements already in the early morning, Orbán wrote 2 sentences on facebook “We support the sovereignty of Ukraine – that is what I said to the Ukrainian head of state. Our country is part of the joint EU efforts for peace.” No single word about Putin, about the Russian aggression ►HU. Besides posting pictures of the national security council and himself together with foreign minister Szijjártó this was everything. The official website of the PM shows a meeting Orbán’s with the director of a telecommunication company in the Várszínház and similar messages as put on facebook have been sent to MTI state news agency by the press chief of the PM office. No word to the Hungarians from the PM himself.
And of course the regime told that the West would be lying. “It is not true that Hungary did not support any joint proposals. As Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said, Hungary is part of the common EU position – negotiations are ongoing. We hope that the situation in eastern Ukraine will be stabilised through negotiations as soon as possible,” 444 reported ►HU (go to February 22nd, timestamp 16:50)
2 hours later the sanctions against the Russian regime and those who help with the invasion into Ukraine were passed by all 27 EU foreign ministers. Without Hungarian veto, which is important to mention! The Guardian was right anyway, since Orbán had to show where his loyalty is. What we don’t know is whether there was a contact to Putin in the meanwhile or not. In any case Népsava reported that the EU decision was delayed because Hungary was reluctant and wanted more time ►HU. Formal enacting should happen today.
On Monday Putin sent his army into the separatist areas, Wednesday began and still no message of Orbán himself, while felt all the other UN members took the opportunity to react. Including German chancellor Scholz, who declared before the EU worked out the next steps that he ordered to stop the procedure for granting operational permission for the Baltic Sea gas pipeline North Stream 2, which was build to transport Russian gas to Central Europe directly, as additional German sanction. Also the Chinese opposed clearly the aggressive act in the UN security council. Just Donald Trump told the world what a “genius” Putin would be.
Putin seems to be unhinged, the way he spoke about Ukraine not having the right to exist says more about his mentality than it does about anything else. So it looks like I was wrong and Istvan (Chicago) was right about the “intervention” in Ukraine. At this time, a military response from NATO is out of the question, but a joint approach to severe economic sanctions seems to be the only option. Of course, Orbán will say the minimum necessary to upset either side (Russia or “the West”) and will not consider taking sanctions against Russia – I still think he is Putin’s main ally within the EU and might actually be rubbing his hands at the prospect of a weakened Ukraine, allowing him greater influence over the fate of the Hungarians living in Kárpátalja
yep, I was wrong about Putin agenda; it’s a good thing (for me) Betfair didn’t run a market on Invasion of Ukraine, I would’ve layed it (bet against) for a few hundred.
As far as EU sanctions go, correct me if I’m wrong; but can’t Orban veto any such sanctions?
I have completely failed to understand the West’s reaction to events in Ukraine. I need not linger over obvious inadequacy of the so called “sanctions”. As for banks and oligarchs Russia is well prepared and in any case it is water off a duck’s back. The Baltic gas pipeline hold up, if it actually happens, is about the only one that has any teeth, therefore it is unlikely to happen.
Western intelligence reported to their bosses on the forthcoming moves, but they need not have gone to huge efforts since the troop buildup and movements were there for all to see. Their interpretation would not strain the deductive skills of a five years old child. I remain puzzled why Johnson and Biden took hours to announce what should have been “oven ready” days earlier. But even then, they failed to get UEFA to sing up to moving the cup final venue from Russia, even now. This should have been dealt with by executive orders to leave UEFA no time or room to squirm out of this decision.
Putin is possibly an isolated figure in his Czar’s quarters in the Kremlin and he may be delusional.
I fear that the West’s determination to avoid military confrontation whilst understandable it is flawed. Sanctions have never been known to work and even if they might produce some reaction it will be delayed and not necessarily the intended ones. For NATO the defence of Ukraine should be of the same level of priority as if a NATO member came under threat. It should be made clear now, rather belatedly that any attack on Ukraine will elicit an appropriate strategic response.
Putin was allowed to annex the Crimea. If he had not been he would not be threatening Ukraine now. If Ukraine is allowed to fall, which country will be next?
Some think that the US is not strong enough to defend Ukraine and Taiwan both at the same time, so they will reserve their strength to defend the latter. Inaction in Europe now will carry the message in Peking that inaction in case of a Taiwan attack will be the US reaction. It is very likely a firm and public commitment to stand firm in Ukraine’s defence would have a powerful deterrent effect and avoid future conflict.
Ukraine is no NATO member, defending 3rd countries is not what NATO was founded for. For changing this approach every must agree and this won’t happen. And if? That would within days lead to a nuclear destruction of planet earth. Not even Putin wants that.
What is a legal obligation is defending Ukraine on basis of the Budapest memorandum. Didn’t work out in case of Crimea and already 2 of the guarantee states of Ukraine clearly said that they wouldn’t send troops.
Forget UEFA, this is just a symbol. Football has nothing to do with real life. If needed just stop tourism. No flights, no business, done.
And to everybody’s surprise it was the economy that destroyed the Soviet Union. Just a side effect of Reagan’s policy, but the main consequence. Travel bans on some Russians won’t weak the power base of Putin, but upset some people. Banning trade of state obligations is way more effective. And whether Putin takes the risk to be shut off from the financial world completely is another question. This could bring the Russian economy to stand still and repeat history.
Well, Istvan, I understand Ukraine is no NATO member. I also understand the need to comply with the terms of the treaty. But, that does not stop a coalition of the willing acting as just that. The US can and has acted on such basis.
No one wants a nuclear free for all, but it does not happen. JFK threatened Nikita with force if he did not remove his Cuban missiles in 1962. Nikita did just that.
Well, football maybe remote from real life but the events can have huge symbolic significance. Such as the St Petersburg final.
i have recently seen a very interesting study on just how little impact sanctions are likely to have. Russia has prepared for them since 2014. For example they don’t need to trade in dollars. They have got rid of their stocks in any case. Their good and currency reserves have never been higher.
it maybe that some men in white coats will remove the delusional Vlad from the throne, but if they don’t I would discount sanctions as having any significant effect.
Vlad is a true son of the old regime, he understands force and only force.
Main difference with Cuba has been that the USA was threatened, no 3rd country. So the only real possibility in acting would be based on the Budapest Memorandum. And selling raw material doesn’t help a lot when cut off financial services. And Russia is even more depending on Western imports than the Soviet Union and its allies were.
My point is that Nikita took the threat of action by JFK seriously enough to remove his missiles. Whether and if so what the justification might be for such threat of action we would not have much problem setting one out. “Vlad, don’t invade because………If you try we will do as follows……..” Just fill in the gaps.
Magyar Nemzet today ran this article https://magyarnemzet.hu/belfold/2022/02/marki-zay-peter-magyar-katonakat-es-fegyvereket-kuldene-ukrajnaba which complies a series of interview statements by MZP relating to Hungary and direct support for Ukraine. The article states he “has repeatedly stated that he would send (Hungarian) soldiers to Ukraine,” and “send weapons to Ukraine.” Of course when one reads this article in detail it appears that MZP was clearly saying was based on a formal decision by NATO to both put combat troops into Ukraine and to request weapons transfers to Ukraine.
Marki Zay knows very well that Germany has opposed both proposals so it will not happen at least for the foreseeable future. But what I find interesting in this compilation of short statement by MZP is he speaks as if Hungary as a NATO country doesn’t have a say in military policy of NATO. In fact MZP knows consensus decision-making is a fundamental principle which has been accepted as the sole basis for decision-making in NATO since the creation of the Alliance in 1949. Consensus decision-making means that there is no voting at NATO. Consultations take place until a decision that is acceptable to all is reached. Sometimes member countries agree to disagree on an issue. In general, this negotiation process is rapid since members consult each other on a regular basis and therefore often know and understand each other’s positions in advance.
The editors of Magyar Nemzet who authorized this unsigned article are fully aware of this too. The US has decided to arm Ukraine to the maximum amount possible in terms of conventional weapons and it has been authorized by the US Congress. So have other NATO nations, but no NATO nation has indicated they want to send combat forces into Ukraine to help with its direct defense against the Russians. In fact the US has sent so many rifles to Ukraine that our producers really don’t have many more to send beyond our strategic stockpiles located in arsenals around the USA, like Rock Island arsenal where I was a reserve officer at for years (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rock_Island_Arsenal ). We are now sending pump action shotguns by the thousands to Ukraine which have a limited range but are deadly in close combat in trenches and in urban settings. So many weapons have been and are being sent to Ukraine that my own investments in Raytheon and Lockheed Martin stocks are so high I have been selling some off because I wonder how much higher they can go.
My understanding also is that old early Soviet era SKS semiautomatic rifles in storage have been sent in huge quantities to Ukraine along with detachable magazines that can replace the fixed ten shot mags on the original Russian SKS rifles and later Chinese SKS rifles which utilize the same round ( 7.62×39mm ) as the modern AK 47 and the updated AK-103. My understanding the basic strategy NATO countries including the USA have recommended to the Ukrainians is one dependent on creating massive casualties for invading Russian troops who are mostly conscript soldiers (see https://www.unian.info/politics/ukraine-defense-zelensky-approves-military-security-strategy-11366383.html and also https://euromaidanpress.com/2020/09/18/ukraines-new-national-security-strategy-russia-as-the-aggressor-full-nato-membership-and-a-few-drawbacks/ ).
It is more than obvious that Fidesz wants to scare Hungarians into believing MZP wants an aggressive Hungarian military policy towards any Russian invasion of Ukraine, when Orban already is fully aware that even here in the USA according to polling data only 13% of those polled over here would currently support introducing US combat troops into Ukraine. MZP is clearly not a warmonger, but I am unclear he completely understands that the protracted war model being implemented by Ukraine assumes in the long run safe havens will be provided for Ukrainian troops near the borders of Poland and Romanian.President Zelensky rhetorically wants to defend every inch of Ukraine, but Zelensky knows very well faced with possibly an invasion by a Russian controlled force of up to 200,000 that will not last long and he will end up in Lviv where NATO air cover is potentially possible and even long range artillery from the border with Poland is possible. Rand corp has no doubt gamed this all out as has the NSA including numerous options as no doubt have the Russians.
This is why Lviv is now the most critical city in the Ukraine and likely why my own daughter who a US Army reserve officer is in Poland likely close to the border. Hungary may find that it will be requested to provide safe haven too for Ukrainian troops and hopefully if MZP is elected and invasion does take place his answer to that request will be yes. I would add this strategy is fraught with danger and assumes Putin is not crazy launching air attacks on safe haven NATO nations which could lead to a nuclear conflict the world has been trying to avoid. I pray this will not happen but the if rubicon is crossed Hungary will become a front line state very quickly.
Oh by the way Trump seems to think Putin’s justification for invading Ukraine in his speech was “savvy” and “genius.” Trump also said “I went in yesterday, and there was a television screen, and I said, ‘This is genius.’ Putin declares a big portion of the Ukraine — of Ukraine — Putin declares it as independent. Oh, that’s wonderful,” Trump said when asked about the news. “I said, ‘How smart is that?’ And he’s going to go in and be a peacekeeper.” Trump also argued that the US should be preparing the US border with Mexico for war, not Ukraine. Hopefully soon Trump will get convicted of something and he can be locked away in a secure facility. His insanity can be watched here https://www.clayandbuck.com/president-trump-with-cb-from-mar-a-lago/ .
Within the last hour or so Ukraine has declared a state of emergency and ordered full mobilization of its reserves in stages according to reports I am reading from military analysts. It appears that Volodymyr Zelensky is now accepting the intelligence NATO has been providing to him and understanding the Russians may be rolling very shortly. Zelensky indicated he was not authorizing a general mobilization, only some of the reserves. According to the Wall Street Journal that is not the case in reality. As is normal in a reserve call up it is done in waves, so the call-up of reservists would initially involve 36,000 service members with combat experience in Ukraine. It will be extended step by step to a full mobilization including medical personnel.
Since when does the Nemzet writes facts? Believing in anything the paper that lost more defamation cases of all regime propaganda outlets writes is risky!
So you think MZP never said any of the stuff in the article in the interviews? I agree Magyar Nemzet is a propaganda rag, I also know they constantly cite fragments of what people say in the context of larger interviews.
The important thing to note is how Fidesz is trying to present MZP to the Hungarian public in relationship to potential warfare in Ukraine. We all know that MZP says some interesting stuff in interviews, some that has upset people in his own electoral block, I have no doubt the direct quotes he said.
MZP knows I suspect the basics that consensus decision-making is a fundamental principle which has been accepted as the sole basis for decision-making in NATO since the creation of the Alliance in 1949. Consensus decision-making means that there is no voting at NATO. Consultations take place until a decision that is acceptable to all is reached. Yet he speaks of NATO decision making like it is orders coming down from on high in direct quotes.
MZP knows there is no support for direct intervention of NATO armed forces in the Ukraine proper. He was just in Germany talking with foreign policy people so I am sure he understands that. Even most US military forces that were conducting training in Ukraine have withdrawn, but there is some question as to whether US special forces conducting training or advising are still present in Ukraine at least according to retired special forces officers who are will to discuss this on the internet and references in the Washington Post.
This Washington Post story https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/02/23/ukraine-russia-poland-refugees/ discuses some of what is being done to prepare on the Polish Ukraine border for a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine. My daughter is apparently working with the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division on civil affairs issues, not surprisingly Maj. Gen. Chris Donahue who was a commander at the Kabul airport is commanding directly US forces in Poland.
I suspect Gen Donahue and my daughter collaborated to some degree during the Kabul airport evacuation. I learned more from this article than I have from talking on the phone with my daughter who talks mostly about Polish food and nice people. She knows the rules about radio silence and adheres to them.
Hopefully Orban is utilizing some NATO support to support the Hungarian military for a possible refugee flood in the event of a Russian invasion of Ukraine .
Why do you analyse these nemzet articles like they were real news?
They write what the Viktor tells them. Here and there they may cite MZP with a half sentence, but always out of context.
I am not saying don´t read it, but be aware it is not news, just propaganda.
I, for one, am thankful of any references made in this blog or in the comments to articles in Magyar Nemzet or any other pro-government media, because they are very useful in order to follow the propaganda narrative that Orbán is trying to concoct at every step. Since propaganda is a big deal for this regime, it cannot be ignored by us.
The surprising things Márki-Zay tells are not the statements he repeated already several times. Here it happened along the line I wrote about. But since the regime is putting small statements into a different context – think about the in the meanwhile famous “we should use EU funds to insulate our houses for using less gas” being changed into don’t heat your house “for using less gas” – I won’t exclude putting snippets into a totally wrong context would happen. I remember that he spoke about UN missions Hungary takes or took place in since many, many years and that he would fulfil this duty as well. So material for falsifications could be available, just about Hungarian soldiers right now serving somewhere, not about fighting for Ukraine. Why am I sure about? Because the independent media do their job and report about the unclear or surprising statements as well and they did not report about sending Hungarian soldiers to Ukraine either. None did so.
Orbán’s silence is probably due to some serious nail-biting.
How would he juggle the grenades of a very possible cooling of the relationship between Russia and China? China is strongly opposed to separatism and Mongolia was for many years (and potentially still is) the object of many conflicts between the two countries.
Of course the Russian cruise missiles are hitting Ukraine regularly right now and the invasion is on. The Ukrainian command centers in and around Kiev have taken hits by Russian cruise missiles according to a post on line by the Ukrainian Minister of the Interior, it’s unclear if they are operational still. I have heard no reports as yet from Lviv Ukraine. The US and NATO has asked Volodymyr Zelensky to retreat to Lviv near the Polish border, but according to a report I heard within the last hour he has refused to go. There were some reports on CNN of Russian covert teams already in Kiev tonight.
I am sure it will be much worse within hours the US media has quoted Putin as sayin on Russian TV he is ordering the demilitarization and denazification of Ukraine. Basically the CIA obviously had the Russian game plan correct and exposed it, but that did not matter in the least really. What is really cynical is RT news is showing feeds from CNN live from Kiev on their site as if this is all a surprise to Putin’s information team.
Thanks Istvan. I still remember I found out about Trump’s coup attempt on “Hungarian Spectrum”, so I a not surprised to see your prescient comments regarding Putin’s invasion. I fear that Putin will murder Present Zelensky and -of course- I fear terrific civilian/military casualties. A bad sign is that I can no longer access “Kiev Post”, an English language post that I have read for years in the old formulation and in last year, the new formulation. Like Stalin and Hitler, Putin is a master liar.
I don’t think Putin or Orbàn are “master liars” bc their lies are so blatant and shallow and would count little if it wasn’t for the total/overwhelming propaganda machines they have built. And while Trump is simply an idiot, his carpetbaggers have quite a clout too.
Unfortunately I still see doubts in some on the Democratic side in Hu about the importance of propaganda.