January 15, 2024

  • January 15, 2024
  • tappanch
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Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 15, 2024 17:06

This is a continuation of our discussion from a day ago. It appears based on Russian media reports that Orban’s deal with the EU is not seen as a betrayal of boss Putin. In fact it’s presented in some ways as rather clever.

According to articles I read in translation (using Yandex Translate) from Russian media the EU aid package, would allow Hungary to consider lifting its veto in exchange for annual reviews on how the money was being spent over four years and any repayment on debt incurred likely excludes Hungary from those somehow.

I am following the rules used before on this site and not linking Russian articles to my post. The Russians do not oppose Orban’s insisting on ending the Russia-Ukraine conflict through peace negotiations rather than prolonging the war indefinitely. Because it seems the Russians believe any peace negotiations would be based on establishing a line of control of occupied territory.

Effectively they see the deal Orban supports as ceding Ukrainian sovereignty over significant areas without explicitly stating that. It also seems the Russians believe Orban will continue to oppose Ukrainian membership in the EU even after any peace deal might be reached.

tappanch
tappanch
January 15, 2024 19:09

Istvan, you are welcome to post Russian links – we, contributors of this blog, are not children and will not succumb to Putinist propaganda.

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 15, 2024 21:37
Reply to  tappanch

Thanks from now on I will do so. Istvan said it was prohibited directly to me before.

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 16, 2024 03:10

„directly to me“ was because you praised Russian propaganda as valuable information, but it is only propaganda. … that was my interpretation …

tappanch
tappanch
January 15, 2024 19:19

This is how Orban’s son-in-law obtained lots of office buildings in Belgrade a few days ago.

Hungarian public money —-> Hungarian National Bank foundation (semi-private) ——> Orban’s oligarch Jellinek (private) —-> Orban’s son-in-law Tiborcz (private)

Last year, “Jellinek” also handed over about hundred million dollars plus Hotel Gellert to Tiborcz.

https://www.szabadeuropa.hu/a/tiborcz-orban-jellinek-magyar-nemzeti-bank-mnb/32775023.html

tappanch
tappanch
January 15, 2024 19:31

Fresh EU money to the Orban regime:

2023.12.28: 779.5 ;
2024.01.02: 445.0 ;
2024.01.15: 140.1 million euros.

https://www.portfolio.hu/gazdasag/20240115/ujabb-140-millio-eurot-folyosit-magyarorszagnak-az-europai-bizottsag-662997

tappanch
tappanch
January 15, 2024 20:02

Japanese car manufacturer Suzuki has to close down its Esztergom factory for a week at the minimum, because the Huthi attacks on shipping in the Red Sea.

https://www.marketscreener.com/quote/stock/SUZUKI-MOTOR-CORPORATION-6491220/news/Hungary-s-Suzuki-plant-to-stop-production-for-a-week-over-supply-chain-issues-45740066/

wolf
wolf
January 15, 2024 20:17
Reply to  tappanch

Tesla will stop production in/near Berlin for two weeks at the end of January.

wolf
wolf
January 15, 2024 20:30

Kind of funny – obviously not for thr locals though.
With great fanfare a new bridge over the little Ipoly river was built to connect Slovakia and Hungary – but it won’t be used now because of the flooding .,,
Of course the bridge got the name of a saint:
Saint Barbara, may she help you

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 16, 2024 14:33

This RT story in English was also published in Russian https://www.rt.com/news/590695-ukraine-says-time-running-out-on-us-aid/. It basically is a report on an interview Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba gave to American news network ABC which is owned by the massive Walt Disney Company.

The Russians included a very critical comment about Putin to be included that read as follows: “ABC noted that Russian forces have made territorial gains in recent weeks and have taken the upper hand in terms of firepower. However, Kuleba argued that the gains were “minimal,” and he denied that Russian President Vladimir Putin is now in a stronger position. “Hitler pretended to be very strong for many years, and we all know how it ended,” he said.”

To make a comparison between Hitler and Putin like this if made publicly by a Russian could result actually in arrest. So it’s interesting that this comment appeared.

It seems very possible that US funding for Ukraine could still be blocked by Republicans in the US House of Representatives into next month or longer. Kuleba may be overly optimistic in his analysis.

Jan
Jan
January 16, 2024 16:17

The Viktor has a new Buddy in the EU.
Robert Fico has stated that he will defend the Orbán government against the European Union from everything (nepszava.hu)
So, the window to apply Article 7 is closed again.
In the meantime, parts of the European Parliament threatened the Commission to sue them because they released money for the regime.
MEPs threaten European Commission with lawsuit for paying Orbán’s government (nepszava.hu)
Thursday is the discussion in the EP

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 16, 2024 18:13
Reply to  Jan

That is likely an astute observation Jan. It’s also apparent that Poland even though the declared enemy of Russia going back in time is now supporting blocking Ukrainian agricultural imports side by side with Hungary (see https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/eus-eastern-members-demand-import-duties-on-ukraine-grains/ar-AA1n05TX)

Long wars are strange things and it’s not just US Republicans who are becoming less than enthusiastic about supporting Ukraine when it impacts their own economic interests.

I saw the same thing in our Vietnam war when I showed up in South Vietnam as a baby faced hard core anticommunist officer in 1972 after going to intensive Vietnamese language school in Texas. But I knew even then President Nixon and Henry Kissinger were preparing a complete withdrawal under cover of a peace agreement.

Orban is unfortunately winning on many levels right now.

Jan
Jan
January 16, 2024 23:59

As far as I understand, import duty is a tax, not a blockage.

wolf
wolf
January 16, 2024 20:23
Reply to  Jan

Thursday will be an interesting day in the EP.
Not only the “Soros Left” but also Fidesz former friends in the EPP (lead by Mr Weber) will probably tell Hungary and its allies to f*ck off!
Of course they can’t throw them out of the EU but the “central Europeans” (like Fico) will be under pressure and the West will not cooperate with them.
And Orbán’s favourites the West Balkan wull have no chance to join the EU – Serbia etc are so similar to Hungay and Slovakia right now – we don’t want them in the EU!
What I find especially crazy:
The right wing is fighting against “illegal immigration” and at the same time Hungary let around two thousand people smugglers from oher countries migrantsout of prison.
If we add a few Hungarian smugglers that means that at least 20 000 or more can enter the EU hiding in those dark windowless vans …

tappanch
tappanch
January 16, 2024 21:07

Putin today, January 16, 2024:

“Просто если дальше будет продолжаться то, что сейчас продолжается, то, что сейчас имеет место быть, а сейчас, это совершенно очевидно, не только провалилось их контрнаступление, но инициатива полностью находится в руках российских Вооружённых Сил. Если так будет дальше продолжаться, то украинской государственности может быть нанесён невосполнимый, очень серьёзный удар. ”

If things continue this way,, it is quite obvious, not only has their [Ukrainians’] counteroffensive failed, but the initiative is completely in the hands of the Russian Armed Forces. If this continues, then Ukrainian statehood may suffer an irreparable, very serious blow.

http://kremlin.ru/events/president/news/73275

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 16, 2024 21:58
Reply to  tappanch

The older Russian tradition of creative story-telling by leaders runs deep with everything Putin utters, and doesnt translate to other languages without due interpretation.

Jan
Jan
January 17, 2024 00:04

Now this is crazy, how would one call the effort and the person who wants to undertake this effort? Crazy, loss of reality, extreme Christian?
Proposals are welcome.
Luxembourg’s new PM wants to be the EU’s Orbán whisperer – POLITICO

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 17, 2024 23:33
Reply to  Jan

Now Luc Frieden conveys that he doesn’t know Orban …

… now there are two possibilities.

He is more naive than the average conservative and believes something divine about himself,

or he is exceptionally clever and already has Orban in his pocket.

According to the article 🙁 he is the first possibility.

Jan
Jan
January 18, 2024 18:27
Reply to  Don Kichote

I agree with the first possibility

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 17, 2024 19:56

So back in June Le Monde ran this story https://www.lemonde.fr/en/france/article/2023/06/30/more-than-320-french-citizens-and-residents-have-gone-to-fight-in-ukraine-since-the-start-of-the-war_6040276_7.html

Today the Russians ran this https://www.rt.com/russia/590825-kharkov-missile-strike-mercenaries/ claiming a direct hit on French volunteers fighting in Ukraine. The Ukrainian authorities first said that two missiles had struck an inactive hospital, injuring nine people. Then there was a Ukrainian report that no military personnel were among the injured, only civilians, and that the target had been a “civilian residential building.”

Really who knows the truth in this war, both the Russian and Ukrainian reports in the past have been fabricated or slanted.

Macron said yesterday that France would send Ukraine 40 long-range SCALP air-to-ground missiles and ‘several hundred bombs.’ The Russians implied in their reports that this attack was a response to that move by Macron.

tappanch
tappanch
January 18, 2024 02:21

“Ursula von der Leaving: MEPs slam Commission chief for walking out of Hungary debate”
“Some MEPs, like German Green Daniel Freund, continued to address von der Leyen as if she were still in the room. “You allowed yourself to be blackmailed, you paid the biggest bribe in history,” he said, long after she’d left.”

https://www.politico.eu/article/ursula-von-der-leyen-viktor-orban-meps-slam-commission-chief-for-walking-out-of-hungary-debate/

Theestampe
Theestampe
January 18, 2024 09:58
Reply to  tappanch

Guy Verhofstadt’s address to Von der Leyen in the EP was quite a scene.

https://x.com/guyverhofstadt/status/1747595401392185659?s=20

Just look at VdL’s face as Verhofstadt criticises her for giving in to Orban’s blackmail. She goes from smiling to being less joyful in no time.

Renew
Last edited 1 month ago by Theestampe
Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 18, 2024 16:10

This story is interesting https://www.euronews.com/my-europe/2024/01/18/meps-threaten-legal-action-if-commission-unfreezes-more-funds-for-hungary. But if more funds are not released what happens to the deal with Orban over Ukraine funding?

Since things are very confused now with the US budget process as it relates to Ukraine funding and in fact formal additional objections are being raised by Republicans relating to accountability for existing weapons provided to Ukraine see for example https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2024/01/11/us-weapons-ukraine-inspector-general/ . There will be massive pressure for such litigation to be thrown out of court.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 18, 2024 22:12

Things are coming together in the EU parliament, at a rate not seen before.Today, they voted (strongly) for further paragaph-7 action against Hungary. This includes taking away the right to vote in the Commission. But they also voted for an investigation into the details of Orbán’s latest successful negotiation, which released previously witheld funding.
Nobody but Orbán can be blamed for the street-level spanking position the European part of his ass is now parked in, and past experience shows that he gives in to that kind of pressure, it’s just that his (public) ego is so bloated at this point, that he might not be able to admit it to the Hun public and his dictator friends.

Last edited 1 month ago by Michael Detreköy
wolf
wolf
January 18, 2024 18:30

You have three guesses:
Europe’s pariah prime minister, ??? , is jetting across the globe in search of friends.
Nice picture of him with Putin …
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/jan/18/viktor-orban-global-strongmen-hungary

Last edited 1 month ago by wolf
tappanch
tappanch
January 18, 2024 19:47

Orban promised to raise the the salaries of the teachers if he gets the billions of euros from the EU. Now that 10 billion will arrive in his pocket, let us estimate how much he spends on the teachers.

The monthly increase of the gross salaries will be between 110 and 128 thousand forints.

category 1: 410 to 538, 31.2%
category 2: 430 to 555, 29.1%
category 3: 520 to 630, 21.2%
category 4: 640 to 750, 17.2% raise

Let us say the average raise is 120 thousand gross, i.e. 80 thousand net.

Number of teachers in the 2022-2023 academic year.

Elementary schools: 73,675

Gimnázium: 18,721
Technikum: 16,878
Szakképző iskola: 5,302
Szakiskola: 1,521
HIGH SCHOOLS TOTAL: 42,422

School teachers total: 116,097

Total extra cost for the government for one year, in euros:
80*116.097*12/382/1000 = 0.2917621 billion euros.

That is 2.9% of the money Ursula v L released to the Orban regime in December 2023.

Let us make another comparison.

Orban wants to buy the Budapest airport by the end of February.
The Hungarian government will pay about half of the estimated 5 billion euros.

That is 8.5 years of pay raise for the Hungarian school system.

Sources:
https://hvg.hu/kkv/20240118_kormanyinfo_gulyas_gergely_beremeles_pedagogusok
https://www.ksh.hu/stadat_files/okt/hu/okt0036.html
https://www.ksh.hu/stadat_files/okt/hu/okt0039.html
https://www.ksh.hu/stadat_files/okt/hu/okt0040.html
https://www.ksh.hu/stadat_files/okt/hu/okt0038.html
https://www.ksh.hu/stadat_files/okt/hu/okt0037.html

Ferenc
January 18, 2024 22:05
Reply to  tappanch

Nice calculation…
BUT please explain me WHAT teachers’ salaries have to do with EU funds.
So WHY teacher’s salaries are depending on EU funds?

Furthermore afaik receiving money from EU funds, first entities have to apply for and then granted based on fulfilment of specified requirements.
If I’m correct all the myghti lidur is buzzing about [again] is in conflict with the basic EU rules…

As a closure: if teachers will receive higher salaries, coming from EU funds, they, the students and their parents should ONLY be thankful to the EU and support the EU by NOT voting for the myghti lidur at the coming elections…

Last edited 1 month ago by Ferenc
Theestampe
Theestampe
January 19, 2024 10:16
Reply to  Ferenc

This was Orbán’s bullshit excuse for not raising the teachers’ salaries. Now that the EU funds have been unblocked, he has no more excuse not to give them a raise.

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 19, 2024 16:46

Right now it looks as if any U.S. funding for Ukraine’s war effort remains frozen, even though was is called over here a continuing resolution passed that provides functional government to go on until March. The Republicans in the US Senate are willing to create a strange deal linking Mexico border protection with funding for Ukraine, but the U.S. House Republicans have not agreed to it.

So the full fiscal burden for the war in Ukraine now rests with the bankrupt Ukrainian government and the EU. President Biden by the way is expending a lot of money on the US navy’s war to keep the Houthis from blowing up shipping in the Red Sea.

In fact the US is carrying airstrikes in three countries across the Middle East. It has sent billions of dollars in military hardware and is providing tactical support for its closest ally in the region, which is embroiled in a war against one militant group and almost daily skirmishes with another on its northern border.

On a personal level I have real
fears where this all going and still have a professor daughter who is a active Lt Colonel in the US Army Reserves.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 20, 2024 01:33

Ukraine’s dependency on support is total. They provide the soldiers and the front-line energy + the daily sacrifices by a great many civilians.
Europe is in a process of preparing for a second Trump term, where the central issue is a transition to war-time arms production and less (or no) dependency on the US/Nato supremacy.
That’s a difficult transition for a continent, long accustomed to peace by doctrine.
If EU can decide on (democratically, as it is) a state of immediate preparedness for matching the percieved Russian threat, without much US involvement, It will happen – but it will also change the balance of power in Europe, leaving the US marginal in the equation.
If the ancient European spirit of warfare comes alive as a unified force, we look at a grim future.

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 20, 2024 17:00

Well our forces have been in Germany a very long time. I flew into Wiesbaden in late 1972 after being on leave and having served in Vietnam.

I guess it all depends on the appeal of isolationism to public sentiment here in the USA how long our forces will remain in Europe if Trump does get elected again which is not impossible.

My service in West Germany back then was delightful in comparison to Vietnam. In fact I have talked to US Army veterans of the Gulf Wars who went to Germany following combat who felt the same way about their service in Germany.

wolf
wolf
January 19, 2024 22:42

A three fourths majority in the European Parliament voted against the Fidesz policies …
Maybe it’s high time for a Huxit?

Last edited 1 month ago by wolf
Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 20, 2024 01:37
Reply to  wolf

That’s a thumb-screw on the Viktor.
He faces some difficult decisions.

wolf
wolf
January 20, 2024 10:54

Soros jr (now president of the Open Systems Foundation) was a speaker on the Davos world forum, I’ll try to find more of what he said. What was reported first:
Davos “experts” talked about the US elections and said that Trump will be elected president again. That gives us hope because experience shows all those predictions have usually been wrong …

tappanch
tappanch
January 21, 2024 10:18

Ursula released 10+ billion euros to the Orban government in return for giving more rights to the “Council of Judges”.

Well, the new membership of the “Council” has 13 judges nominated by the regime (out of 15 members). The judges were pressured to elect them.

Detailed analysis by a former judge:

https://24.hu/belfold/2024/01/21/orszagos-biroi-tanacs-kuria-valasztas-elnok-bagdi-lista-eu-igazsagugyi-reform/

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 21, 2024 16:22

Now I have to say I learned something today by reading Telex. I read this article about Trump https://telex.hu/kulfold/2024/01/19/donald-trump-szifilisz-foltos-tenyer-tunetek

Now on one level it’s a delightful possibility that Trump has syphilis, on another level given the real possibility that President Biden may be walking in his confusion into yet additional wars in the Middle East Trump may be the least of our immediate problems.

My daughter a Lt Colonel in the US Army reserves and a civil affairs specialist with language skills gained in Afghanistan is clearly preparing her self again to potentially go to active duty.

She advised the University of California at Berkeley where she is an assistant professor of the possibility of her going voluntarily on active duty. Under US law the University has to grant he a leave of absence if that happens. Hopefully she will stay in the USA at some nice command center if she is needed.

Really looking at the situation President Biden seems to be drifting into with missile strikes daily against Ansar Allah militia (Houthis), and against Iranian supported militias attacking US airbases in Iraq. The possibility of yet another Trump presidency may not be the most immediate problem the USA faces.

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 21, 2024 23:24

Trump has syphilis is better than Biden as president? Funny statement Istvan where an egomaniacal narcissist just publicly muses about how the atomic bomb ended the war against Japan in connection with his claim that if he were president there would be no war or he could end it in 24 hours. I don’t believe that.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 23, 2024 02:39

How is the world famous gun violence-scene in Chicago progressing?

Jan
Jan
January 22, 2024 07:28

Fico is completely under the influence of the Viktor.
The question is, is it stupid or clever to come out like this?
And for whom? Fico or the Viktor.
Slovak PM: Ukraine must give up territory to end Russian invasion – POLITICO

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 22, 2024 14:43
Reply to  Jan

Has Putin held out the prospect of a peace treaty? I haven’t read anything about it. All we know so far is that Putin wants to restore his empire to its old borders ?, including other parts of Ukraine and large parts of Poland and a few other states. Hungary is now the second poorest country in the EU with a downward trend. I don’t know what’s clever about that.

Jan
Jan
January 22, 2024 21:43
Reply to  Don Kichote

It is for sure not good for any of both countries.
Who it helps is the Viktor, being able to continue trolling in the EU.

wolf
wolf
January 23, 2024 13:15
Reply to  Jan

It’s funny in a way!
Having lost Poland as an accomplice now Fico and his Slovakia is Hungary’s best friend.
And they are waiting for the elections in Europe (and the USA) to bring the other populists and rightwingers (dare I say fascists?) to power.
Sometimes I get to thinking that it was a big mistake to take down the Iron Curtain.
In East Germany eg there are so many people (around 25%) who are unhappy with democracy – so why not let them and the Balkan (including Hungary etc) join Putin again?
We could use more cheap workers ,,,

tappanch
tappanch
January 22, 2024 15:46

Gross debt of the Hungarian central government on December 31.
(in 10^12 forints)

2023: 50.86518
2022: 45.56238
2021: 40.69701
2020: 36.68434
2019: 29.68197

2013: 21.99861

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 23, 2024 16:20

The other shoe drops see https://magyarnemzet.hu/kulfold/2024/01/halalos-fenyegetest-kapott-az-ukrajnaba-keszulo-szijjarto-peter . This article is about the setup meeting to lead to direct negotiations between Zelensky and Orban over Orban agreeing to not veto EU funding for Ukraine.

The article claims Ukrainian nationalists are threatening to kill Szijjarto. It looks like team Orban might be preparing to megmérgezi a kutat in order to set the stage for a breakdown in the Zelensky Orban discussions.

Team Orban apparently wants changes in Ukrainian law relating to language rights, possibly recognition of dual nationality rights for the Hungarian minority in Ukraine, that could formally allow dual nationals protection from the military draft without penalties under Ukrainian law which obviously would be unacceptable to Zelensky after the scandals with the Ukrainian military draft system.

There are infinite possibilities to promote a break down in the discussions and blame the Ukrainians for it. Now that is clever and old school politics. Maybe like my grandfather used to say A türelem rózsát teremt Orban is patient in setting his traps for his various intrigues.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 23, 2024 21:10

An old proverb says: He, digging a grave for another, will end up falling into it, himself.
Orbán is the worst political brand in the EU
Putting on shallow charades is his only option for attracting attention, at this point.

Last edited 1 month ago by Michael Detreköy
Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 23, 2024 23:00

A slight criticism, Orban is certainly one of the greatest and most intelligent Hungarian politicians since Genghis Khan, if it soothes the Hungarian soul. But Zelensky is superior to him, he can even hold press conferences.

Jan
Jan
January 23, 2024 21:50

The Viktor playing games again.

Turkish parliament approves Sweden’s membership of Nato | Nato | The Guardian
Ewa Stenberg: Erdogan gets paid well for his NATO yes – DN.se
Now it will show if the “brave” majority in the Hungarian parliament can beat Turkey and approve Sweden’s membership of NATO before Turkey as promised.
I wonder if this Turkish decision surprised the Viktor.

Theestampe
Theestampe
January 24, 2024 09:25
Reply to  Jan

Orbán was adamant Hungary would not be the last country to ratify Sweden’s accession to NATO. He’s taking his revenge on Sweden’s criticisms toward his regime when they were holding the EC Presidency. I don’t understand the EU’s lack of response. Pathetic…

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 24, 2024 15:22
Reply to  Theestampe

A symbolic gauntlet-throwing gesture, perhaps?

photographers-duels
wolf
wolf
January 24, 2024 09:17

This describes “nicely” tge Hungarians’ situation:
If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back. ~Carl Sagan
(Book: The Demon-Haunted World

wolf
wolf
January 24, 2024 17:43

Still no results on Sweden joinig NATO and Hungary’s (or rather FIDESZ…) position:
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/jan/24/orban-reaffirms-backing-for-swedish-nato-bid-as-allies-patience-runs-low
More people would be willing to throw out Hungary from NATO and the EU and let it join Russia.

wolf
wolf
January 24, 2024 17:54
Reply to  wolf

This article describes what Orbán and — are hoping for:
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/jan/24/anti-european-populists-on-track-for-big-gains-in-eu-elections-says-report
Of course the extreme right won’t get a majority but together with the EPP …
On the other hand Fidesz honchos have been spitting on the EPP (which they belonged to once …) so I can’t imagine EPP cooperating with those right wing populists – but of course we don’t know yet.

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 24, 2024 18:38
Reply to  wolf

@MartonTompos writes „Even though a Hungarian delegation to Sweden led by ex-Minister of Defence Csaba Hende had already stated back in March 2023, they support the NATO bid. According to the Swedes, the delegation didn’t lay any conditions on the table, yet for some reason Orbán still needs to talk.“

Everyone knows that Orban is a blackmailer and that nothing good can be expected from him and certainly Selenskyj.

„Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billström on Tuesday rejected Hungary’s call to negotiate about his country’s bid to join NATO.“

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 25, 2024 01:57
Reply to  Don Kichote

Latest in #Hungary’s NATO saga: Hungarian government papers started a smear campaign against #Swedish Prime Minister, Ulf Kristersson, accusing him of celebrating his birthday in luxury parties instead of visiting Hungary at the invitation of PM Orban. 😀 Who would have thought?

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 25, 2024 22:32
Reply to  Don Kichote

Whatever domestic propaganda value of such a campaign may hold, it’s also a sign that Fidesz has written off the (quite substantial) Hungarian diaspora in Sweden.

Last edited 1 month ago by Michael Detreköy
tappanch
tappanch
January 25, 2024 09:32

Ten years.

The relative poverty of Hungarian vs EU average population has increased significantly.

Food prices vs salaries.

Austria/Hungary:
food prices
2013: 153.2%
2023: 108.2%
salaries:
2013: 408.8%
2022: 369.2%

France/Hungary
food prices
2013: 138.0%
2023: 109.2%
salaries:
2013: 367.6%
2022: 305.1%

https://g7.hu/elet/20240125/elelmiszerarakban-elertuk-az-unios-atlagot-de-hol-vannak-hozza-a-berek/

https://www.mnb.hu/letoltes/hun-ir-digitalis-24.pdf

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 26, 2024 03:19

Today the aged leader of the Republican minority in the US Senate Mitch McConnell pretty much declared a bipartisan deal he was working on that linked US military funding for Ukraine and increased border security with Mexico was dead.

It is possible no funding for Ukraine will be coming from the USA until after the November Presidential election. Of course if Trump wins not even then. See https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2024/01/immigration-deal-donald-trump-mitch-mcconnell-senate-democrats.html

Theestampe
Theestampe
January 26, 2024 10:29

Sadly too many know the US is not a reliable partner. And too many don’t. If Trump is reelected in November, it will be high time for the EU to take its defense into its own hands.

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 26, 2024 22:08
Reply to  Theestampe

The situation of Ukraine is now difficult unless the EU opens its pockets up big time. But after my experience in Vietnam and my daughter’s experience with the total collapse of Afghanistan where she served honorably as an Army officer, I am no longer surprised in the least.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 26, 2024 23:05

Patience of Ukrainian forces is the central issue, while European ammunition, propellant and drone productiction increases.
Russia imports more bulk tonnage (and get a lot of “bang”), but Europe provides advanced training and higher accuracy per deployed soldier at a ratio the opponent cannot match.
The civilian status is a battle-zone Russia abused from the beginning, but Ukraine are keeping that factor in reserve.
The stalemate hurts Russia much more than they will ever admit, and the steep widow-count is a direct countdown for Putin.

Last edited 1 month ago by Michael Detreköy
tappanch
tappanch
January 26, 2024 14:57

The true meaning of MAGA is MASA.

MASA := make America small again

The national debt of the US will not decrease by withdrawing from the world.

The debt is the result of the reduced corporate taxes and reduced tax rates benefiting mostly the rich, while the expenses of the government are not reduced.

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 26, 2024 21:00
Reply to  tappanch

It looks like … makes America go away.

wolf
wolf
January 26, 2024 12:28

Mr Pressman clearly describes Hungary’s politics re EU, NATO etc:
It’s not a foreign policy, it’s a foreign fantasy …
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/jan/26/us-disappointed-that-hungary-taking-so-long-to-approve-sweden-joining-nato

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 26, 2024 22:35
Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 26, 2024 23:35

Probably worse news for the US actually, since the deep confusion about priorities comes to the surface – Adding another layer to the social/political crisis in the US.

wolf
wolf
January 27, 2024 22:55

Success for Hungary!
The president of the European Council, Charles Michel, has abandoned plans to quit the position early amid fears it could have led to Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán, getting the role.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/jan/26/eu-president-to-stay-in-post-amid-fears-of-viktor-orban-getting-role
Three weeks ago he said he wanted to return to the Belgian parliament, that would have been less stressful – but now?

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 27, 2024 23:22
Reply to  wolf

Damage control at work.
Several counter moves against Fidesz’s EU agenda-setting are working in the EP.

Last edited 1 month ago by Michael Detreköy
Theestampe
Theestampe
January 28, 2024 18:00

Charles Michel actually wanted to run for the European elections. His mandate as president of the EUCO is limited to two terms and will end in October of this year. I don’t know how the EP could actually have any influence here. EUCO and EP usually have opposite positions on virtually everything.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 28, 2024 19:48
Reply to  Theestampe

Yes, it looks unlikely, but there is some serious camel swollowing going on in the EP, for the sake of curbing Orbán’s influence and showing solidarity with the Ukrainian membership effort, which might just have gained more points by laying out details of the most recent (big) corruption case.

wolf
wolf
January 28, 2024 12:22

This is crazy!
Leaders of “Hungarian independent media” i e Orbán’s propaganda are whining that Polish media (aka PISser media) lost their “independence” under the new government:
https://dailynewshungary.com/hungarian-public-media-supports-independence-of-polish-public-media/

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 28, 2024 16:11

Biden’s hopes for getting funding for Ukraine’s war effort took another beating see https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/ukraine-uncovers-mass-fraud-weapons-procurement-security-service-2024-01-27/#:~:text=Jan 27 (Reuters) – Ukraine’s,equivalent of about $40 million.
I assume the EU funding plan for Ukraine will face additional opposition too.

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 28, 2024 17:30

So the title of this story out of Ukraine today in Ukrainska Pravda is “If Ukraine falls, we will demand Zakarpattia – Hungarian party leader” László Toroczkai, leader of the Hungarian far-right Mi Hazank party ( Our Homeland Movement) made yesterday at a party conference in Budapest. This party contains the wreckage of Jobbik.
It carries little political significance given that Orban is sufficiently rightwing for most Hungarians, but the story was front page news in Ukraine.
(See https://www.pravda.com.ua/eng/news/2024/01/28/7439207/) László Toroczkai’s speech containing his ideas for Hungary seizing part of Ukraine can be seen in this video https://youtu.be/s9gmT9uTqAg it’s over an hour into the recording of the conference. I found the comments but it was not worth the effort since László Toroczkai’s speech was just a bag of wind and there is little question that the heroic Hungarian Army likely would be defeated by Ukrainian national guard forces they tried to seize Transcarpathia during a crisis.

Wolf will be interested to know that several German AFD fascists gave greetings at the Mi Hazank party conference along with other anti-globalist activists. It was interesting that there were comments from some speakers against Orban’s support for Israel too.
But the tragedy of this is there are indeed Ukrainian nationalists who would like to drive out the Hungarian speaking minority from Transcarpathia and I am sure they were excited to learn about László Toroczkai’s speech.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 28, 2024 22:12

Positive news for some : AfD loses election to CDU in Thüringen
Conservative votes prevail in southern Germany.
Should we cry, or should we celebrate?.

c

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 29, 2024 01:13

Thuringia is not southern Germany, Michael, and the leader of the partner party CSU Söder once said they the CSU are the AfD with substance. 🙂 We should cry?, no we should name it.

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 29, 2024 01:44
Reply to  Don Kichote

French right-wing populist Marine Le Pen has clearly distanced herself from the AfD following reports of the Potsdam meeting with right-wing extremists and threatened to end the joint group in the EU Parliament. “I strongly disagree with the proposals that are said to have been discussed at this meeting,” said Le Pen with regard to the plans discussed in Potsdam for mass deportations of people with a history of migration in Germany. 🙂

wolf
wolf
January 29, 2024 11:08

Conservative votes prevail in eastern Germany – the former socialist part, similar to Hungary etc.
In some places AfD are so strongest and together with CDU have a clear majority – crazy!

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 29, 2024 14:54
Reply to  wolf

It’s hard to miss how these times seem to fuel national conservatism across Europe and I agree that the East European conservatives’ paranoia and preference for strong state-control is contrary to much logic. Hungary, Slovakia, Serbia make the strangest cases, as they idealize the one-party state and close alliances with real dictators.

wolf
wolf
January 29, 2024 13:33

Now the fun starts:
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/jan/29/secret-eu-plan-to-sabotage-hungarian-economy-revealed-as-anger-mounts-at-orban
Officials in Brussels have reportedly drawn up a secret plan to sabotage Hungary’s economy if Viktor Orbán decides this week to again block a €50bn support package for Ukraine.
The plan, reported by the Financial Times, reflects the fury mounting across European capitals at what one diplomat called the “policy of blackmail” being pursued by the Hungarian prime minister, who leads the bloc’s most pro-Russia state.
And people are already reacting:
You now get 389 HUF for 1 €- a week ago it was 382

Last edited 1 month ago by wolf
Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 29, 2024 23:06

Zsolt Bayer Fidesz member no.5, if I remember correctly, gave false information about his ancestors. As if that wasn’t a prerequisite for becoming Fidesz. He recently accused journalist Szabolcs Panyi of working for a foreign secret service in his smear campaign show.

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 09:50
Reply to  Don Kichote

His Nyilas (Hungarian Nazi) grandfather taught people how to search for valuables in Jewish women’s vagina in the Kiskőrös ghetto before the women were sent to Auschwitz. After the war, the grandfather volunteered to spy on other people for the Communist secret services.

Bayer now denies that he knew his grandfather too well.

But in the past he said the opposite.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoajtl7BSe0&t=2532s

https://telex.hu/belfold/2024/01/28/ungvary-krisztian-bayer-zsolt-nagyapja-gyimes-karoly-nyilas-besugo

https://hvg.hu/itthon/20240128_Ungvary_Bayer_Zsolt_nagyapja_nyilas_gettoorvosbol_lett_az_AVH_besugoja_aztan_elitelt_magzatelhajto

https://hvg.hu/itthon/20240130_bayer_zsolt_magyar_nemzet_ungvary_krisztian_interju_stumpf_andras_mandiner

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 10:04
Reply to  Don Kichote

A parody made yesterday about this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfcbSg8QzCE

wolf
wolf
January 30, 2024 11:24

Hungary is the greatest!
The new Transparency International Corruption Index 2023 gives Hungary the highest corruption of all EU states.
https://images.transparencycdn.org/images/CPI-2023-Report.pdf
Now ain’t that fantastic?

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 30, 2024 18:59
Reply to  wolf

Reassuring for some, to say the least!

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 30, 2024 23:21
tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 09:10

In 2019, the Orban government created a 33+ billion HUF program to help enterprises in 6 towns.

Three per cent of the money was distributed to 5 companies in Székesfehérvár and Debrecen. Nothing in the other 4 towns.

Then quietly, the remaining 32 billion was privatized (for free, of course) to employees of Orban’s oligarchs.

https://24.hu/belfold/2024/01/31/varosi-tokealap-megszuntetes-magantokealap-mfb-csoport-nagy-marton-kozpenz-tamogatas-32-milliard-forint/

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 09:26

The long-promised pay raises for elementary and high school teachers thanks to the EU money have arrived.
The % varies from 3% to 42% (in a parochial school).

A math teacher gave concrete numbers. His monthly net salary will be raised from 800 to 1100 euros (36.8%). (at EUR/HUF= 386). He is very happy.

Others are much less happy and disappointed.

https://hvg.hu/itthon/20240131_Van_olyan_egyhazi_iskola_ahol_42al_emelkedtek_egyes_tanari_fizetesek

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 09:33

Last year Orban disclosed in a private forum that the main reason he opposes Ukrainian EU membership is that because this way the US would obtain too much influence in Eastern Europe !

https://telex.hu/direkt36/2024/01/31/zart-ajtok-mogott-orban-valami-nagyon-mast-hozott-fel-ukrajna-eu-csatlakozasa-ellen

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 11:01

To Istvan (Chicago):

The ratio of Israeli injured / dead soldiers in the Gaza war.

Since October 27, 2023 (start of the ground war) – through January 30, 2024

223 dead, 1283 injured (260 serious, 429 moderate, 594 light)
injured/dead: 5.75

October 7&8, 2023 (at the Hamas assault):

328 dead soldiers (+ 9 died later), 1514 injured (164 serious, 297 moderate, 1053 light)
injured/dead: 4.62

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 11:23
Reply to  tappanch

Hamas does not give loss figures. Israel estimates that it killed 1,000 on October 7 & 8 and about 10,000 since then, out of a 40,000 total.

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 11:53
Reply to  tappanch

The numbers of the Hamas propaganda tool called “health ministry” (the military losses are probably included – most Hamas people fight in civilian clothes):

January 30: 150 dead, 313 injured
ratio: 2.09

October 7 through January 30: 26900 dead, 65949 injured.
ratio: 2.45

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 12:20
Reply to  tappanch

Suppose we accept the Hamas number of the Gazan injured, and 90% of the Israeli number of the Hamas dead.

If the actual injured/dead Gazan ratio were say 3.88, then we could estimate that

Hamas dead: 10,000
Gazan civilian dead: 7,000

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 12:53
Reply to  tappanch

I still remember that the American & international media reported 100,000 Albanian civilian deaths in the 1999 Kosovan war. This prompted the American bombing of Serbia and Kosovo.

The actual numbers were (2015 Kosovan detailed account)

January 1, 1998 through December 31, 2000.

Civilian deaths:
Albanians: 8,676
Serbs: 2,197
Roma and others: 526

Military deaths in Kosovo:
Kosovo Albanians: 2,131
Serbians: 1,084

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 31, 2024 13:05
Reply to  tappanch

tappanch: I really respect your opinions on Hungarian matters, but I believe you have a blind spot with regard to Israel/ Palestine, e.g. your comment: most Hamas people fight in civilian clothes. If this is true then Israel’s declared goal of destroying Hamas could also result in destroying the civilian population

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 31, 2024 13:07
Reply to  Pantanifan

Personally I believe that at some stage Palestinians and Israelis have to learn to live side by side, the only alternative is for one group to kill off the other completely…

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 31, 2024 13:12
Reply to  Pantanifan

even if you kill all Hamas fighters you can’t kill people’s ideas and this war is already spreading to other areas, e.g. the Yemeni Houthis are using it as an excuse to attack ships in the Red Sea… Iran is also heavily involved so the geopolitical consequences of Israeli actions are also important

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 13:29
Reply to  Pantanifan

I just give you the facts I find.

The ultimate aim of every Palestinian and every foreign Islamist organizations is the destruction of Israel.

from the Hamas charter:

18.
“The establishment of “Israel” is entirely illegal and contravenes the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and goes against their will and the will of the Ummah [Islamic world community]”

19.
“There shall be no recognition of the legitimacy of the Zionist entity.”

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/hamas-2017-document-full

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 31, 2024 13:46
Reply to  tappanch

I agree Israel has the right to defend – but not expand – its territory. Oslo accords came so close, assassination of Yitzhak Rabin was a tragedy for all…

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 15:05
Reply to  Pantanifan

Israel gave up large territories even after Rabin’s assassination.
The Israeli army forcibly removed every Jew from their villages in Gaza in 2005.

Religious make-up of Israel & Jordan

comment image

That of Syria in 2010, before the civil war:

comment image

That of Lebanon in 2010:

comment image

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 13:48
Reply to  tappanch

to below:

#1
“you can’t kill people’s ideas”

But you can suppress them for decades. See Entnazifizierung [Denazification] in Germany after 1945.

#2
Iran de facto has occupied big parts of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and bidding time to build the first missiles equipped with atomic warheads.

If the American troops are withdrawn from the Middle East and Israel is destroyed or crippled, then the Ayatollesque Persian Empire is created, a new Islamist superpower holding the majority of the world oil & gas reserves, including the Saudi, Kuwaiti, Iraqi, Qatari etc reserves [I have to look up the %]

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 31, 2024 13:57
Reply to  tappanch

Re.: 1) But you can suppress them for decades:
suppressing ideas in Gaza might actually inflame similar ideas in other parts of the region.
Re. 2): I agree this is part of the bigger picture problem, but occupying Gaza doesn’t solve it…

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 31, 2024 14:00
Reply to  Pantanifan

ps: what happened to Mossad leading up to 7 October? I don’t like conspiracy theories but did they really know nothing about the attack in advance?

Don Kichote
Don Kichote
January 31, 2024 14:54
Reply to  Pantanifan

The Mossad certainly knew something. That just fitted in well with Israel’s policy of repression, which Netanyahu and his nationalist cronies have been supporting for years. The murder and expropriation of Palestinian farmers by nationalist Israeli settlers with the support of the police and military without legal consequences for the perpetrators is Netanyahu’s policy. The arrest of children and adult Palestinians without charge or trial is common practice. The murder of children and women who are supposed to be Hamas fighters is intolerable and to claim that Israel has the right to do so because it is defending itself is downright ridiculous.

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 14:36
Reply to  tappanch

US document, June 1945:

“Only an inflexible long-term occupation authority will be able to lead the Germans to a fundamental revision of their recent political philosophy.”

Taylor, Frederick (2011). Exorcising Hitler: The Occupation and Denazification of Germany

Pantanifan
Pantanifan
January 31, 2024 14:49
Reply to  tappanch

so you advocate a policy of inflexible long-term occupation of Gaza? What about the West Bank, does that need the same policy? And what effect is this policy likely to have in Jordan, Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi and UAE, not to mention Iran?

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 31, 2024 16:48
Reply to  tappanch

Of course I served in Vietnam as a young US Army officer who had been sent to Vietnamese language school immediately after my commissioning . We did extensive body counting during that war and General Abrams our overall commander when I was serving in South Vietnam was big on getting that data from the field.

Historians subsequently have made very credible arguments that much of our work relating to body counts was fraudulent. I actually did some body counts after the Battle of An Loc but did not produce the final report. That was done by intelligence officers ranked much higher than myself.

Our final report of the losses of the communists in that Battle seemed to be higher than it should have been. But it’s impossible to prove that because there were multiple officers providing data.

In some cases we used communist body parts to attempt to create a body count, literally putting parts in piles and declaring one body for the count. Because the communists were decimated outside of An Loc by massive carpet bombing by the Air Force.

I suspect IDF counts are equally inaccurate since many members of Hamas combat units have been similarly decimated by aerial bombings and are intermingled with Palestinian civilians killed.

Israel will have many soldiers after this war who will be experiencing PTSD, including occasionally smelling the stench of death that I too this day still endure and I am now an old man. I pray for both the IDF soldiers and the Hamas militia members who will have to endure this.

tappanch
tappanch
January 31, 2024 13:10

Weekly gasoline price in Hungary (starting 2024.02.02)

$6.44 / US gallon
= 603 / 354.7 * 3.785411784 (liter/HUF) / (USD/HUF) * (US gallon/liter)

US average price on 2024.01.31:

$3.14

https://24.hu/fn/gazdasag/2024/01/31/benzin-gazolaj-uzemanyag-aremelkedes-600-forint/

https://gasprices.aaa.com/

Istvan (Chicago)
Istvan (Chicago)
January 31, 2024 15:52

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2024/01/31/eu-summit-hungary-orban-ukraine/#

It seems obvious to me that this article is mistaken in that the EU knows generally what Orban wants. Money essentially to create ways for Fidesz to create loyalty via EU funding.

Michael Detreköy
Michael Detreköy
January 31, 2024 18:42