hostile to the Hungarian opposition
It is a new phenomenon in Hungarian domestic politics that the adherents of the Hungarian radical rightwing endeavour to distinguish themselves from the largest opposition party, the Fidesz. Accordingly, it is a new element in this process that nowadays the Hungarian opposition is also being attacked from an anti-Semitic angle in the extreme-rightist discourse.
Anti-Semitism, as well as the need to combat anti-Semitism is a traditional element of political discourse in Hungary. In accordance with the orthodox attitude, the Hungarian left continually demands from the rightwing opposition to distance itself from anti-Semitism. However, it often makes this demand on groundless stipulations and which merely serve political and thematising objectives. While the Hungarian parliamentary opposition repeatedly distances itself from anti-Semitic manifestations, it is true that in particular segments of the rightist media empathy vis-a-vis the Jewish community is often lacking.
In order to understand the situation in Hungary, it must be emphasised that the discourse as regards anti-Semitism continually persists in a European environment in which Hungary is one of the rare countries where an extreme rightwing party is not in parliament and consequently these movements have only a nominal weight. (On the subject see Budapest Analyses nos. 35 and 138 in www.budapestanalyses.hu ). At present, the most significant organ of the Hungarian extreme-right is the Jobbik. Following the departure of the founding members of the party, the Jobbik has proceeded along the traditional Central European extreme-rightist path.
The main official premise of the movement focuses on anti-Gypsy rhetoric (it provides a fertile ground for Hungarian radicalism that the de facto problems are embedded in the cohabitation of Gypsy and non-Gypsy communities). The main political objective of the Jobbik is to gain a seat in the European Parliament at the 2009 elections. For this end, they gained over lawyer Krisztina Morvai, who enjoys popularity in the ranks of the rightwing and who became famed particularly after the events of October 23, 2006. (Krisztina Morvai - who had been a sympathiser of the liberal Alliance of Free Democrats earlier - invested much time and energy to expose the ostensible overreactions of the police on t Hungarian radicalism he 50th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution). The Hungarian radical right has a recurring political problem. Notably, in order to gain more votes, it has to distinguish itself from emblematic representatives of the Hungarian right, i.e., Viktor Orbán and the Fidesz.
In this political manoeuvring, the Jobbik officially heralds that the Fidesz is 'soft' in present-day domestic politics and does not invest sufficient effort to remove Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány. This rhetoric is complemented by the assault on Fidesz with an anti-Semitic undertone, which is published on Hungarian extreme-right portals (albeit, they cannot be identified with any political party). It can be unequivocally demonstrated - via the search engines - that the most striking among these portals, which openly advocates fascist and racist views - the kuruc.info.hu portal - has published considerably more anti-Fidesz analyses in the course of the last year than any that would assail the leftwing government of Ferenc Gyurcsány. (It is noteworthy that the portal has appeared on the internet in the United States, where - in the name of the freedom of speech - they refused to remove it from the server, even at the request of Hungary. Thus, the most notorious anti-Semitic Hungarian portal penetrates Hungary from America).
It transpires from the articles written anonymously that the main charge: the Fidesz does not do everything in its power against Ferenc Gyurcsány (namely, it does not employ unconstitutional means) because the party is under Jewish influence. Their main argument maintains that the Fidesz is the 'sister party' of the Israeli Likud. (It is true that the Fidesz is a member of the international rightwing party alliance and there is contact between the two parties, but its intensity is being unduly exaggerated by the extreme right). Another recurring momentum is that the extreme-rightwing portals qualify the foreign policy of Fidesz as 'Zionist', since the Hungarian opposition - in contrast to the leftwing government - represents a stance vis-a-vis Russia, the Georgian-conflict and energy-diversification, which is closer to Washington. (In this connection see Budapest Analyses 133 and 194 on www.budapestanalyses.hu).
It is a persistent element in the extreme-rightist Hungarian logic that the world suffers because of the Israeli-American collaboration and thus, every enemy of the United States, including Putin's Russia, the Castroist Hugo Chavez, Iran, or communist China (on this topic see Budapest Analyses n. 199 on www.budapestanalyses.hu) - should be supported. Hence, these portals (apart from the kuruc.info.hu, the hun.hir.hu, as well as the barikad.hu) openly support the Jobbik and assail the foreign policy orientation of the Fidesz along the lines of anti-Semitism. Thus, overtly, or by implication - apart from Viktor Orbán - they charge Fidesz-caucus leader Tibor Navracsics, former foreign minister János Martonyi and the chairman of the Hungarian Parliament's foreign policy committee Zsolt Németh with being 'Zionists' and 'neo-cons' (these circles do not use the word 'neo-con' as a political science term, but as synonym for 'Jewish', as well as 'Jewish-stooge' politicians.
The attempts of the radical rightwing to differentiate itself from the rightwing parliamentary opposition along the lines of anti-Semitism have created a new situation in Hungarian politics. The Fidesz has found itself in a precarious situation: on the one hand, the leftwing - out of politically motivated orthodoxy - attempts to portray the party as anti-Semitic, while the extreme-right is determined to stamp it as a 'quasi-Zionist'organisation. However, the Hungarian Jewish community that regularly features as a bone of contention in the Hungarian political discourse - is the major casualty of these processes, since it is perceived that only 1% of the country's electorate declare their Jewish identity.