The failure of the 1956 Hungarian revolution – the Soviets blamed the West as Orbán does today


Sixty-five years ago Soviet troops crushed the Hungarian revolution. The Soviet Union launched a propaganda campaign blaming the West for the uprising and bloodshed. Howard Norton, a reporter for the Baltimore Sun, reported from Moscow that the Soviets had broadcast their version of why Russian troops were fighting in Hungary. Unsurprisingly they put the blame on youunequivocal on the West and on America.

According to Moscow, the revolution was started “by serious and honest Hungarians who just wanted to improve their standard of living”. Western agents manipulated them after seeing the opportunity to seize power and revive the capitalist system in Hungary. These “enemies of the people have convinced and confused many honest workers. “

The Soviets also blamed the outside interference. “Western money has been used to spread propagandist literature about Hungary from balloons and to make subversive radio broadcasts and set up a reactionary metro inside the country.”

And as proof that the uprising was the conspiracy of the West, the Pravda writes, “the bourgeois press welcomes with joy the news of the actions of the counter-revolutionary element”. The West was also deliberately destroying Hungarian society by promoting human rights.

Many Hungarian revolutionaries also criticized the West, especially the United States, for failing to provide military assistance to the uprising. Hungarian emigres’ radio broadcasts made many Hungarians believe that American troops would come to the aid of the rebels. Nothing was further from the truth.

India has also blamed the West, especially Britain and France. Nehru told the Indian Senate that the Soviet intervention in Hungary was at least in part due to Russian alarm over the Anglo-French attack on Egypt. The Suez Crisis distracted Hungary’s attention and the Russians attacked.

Today, on the 65th anniversary of the revolution’s failure, the Orbán government uses the same rhetoric. Budapest accuses the West of the failure of the Hungarian revolution of 1956. Mr. László Köver, President of the Hungarian Parliament recently referred to the “betrayal of the West” and affirmed that the West cannot be an example for the Hungary. (Read here in Hungarian)

On this anniversary, the Orbán regime brings its anti-Western and anti-American message to the United States. Mr. Peter Szilágyi, a junior minister will take the message to Passaic, St. Stephen’s Catholic Church, Márta Mártai, the vice president will bring Mr. Köver’s message to Pennsylvania.

In Hungary today, the West is blamed for everything. Western NGOs are destroying Hungary; LGBTQ “agents”, the Biden administration has become the enemy of Hungary’s millennial traditions.

Much like the Soviets of 65 years ago, “Western arrogance” is mentioned and Mr. Orbán asserts that “the West is not happy to just succeed, they also insist that they are right. . It is not enough for them that they are free and that they can live as they wish and take the decisions that their peoples want; they also want everyone to recognize that their decision is the only right one and adopt it. So they want to tell us how to live.

A few days ago, Mr Köver went further, he said that the West “would prefer to collaborate with a neo-Bolshevik group today”.

65-year-old anti-Western and anti-American Soviet propaganda is recycled in Budapest and even exported to North America on the anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution.

György Lazar

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