Explaining Jobbik, the 'Tea Party' of Hungary

w:Treaty of Trianon

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I would like to interrupt my regularly scheduled video game posts to comment on the recent right wing party’s victory in the Hungarian Parliament. Hungary now has a new Prime Minister-in-waiting; Viktor Orbán, and a new ruling party; Fidesz.  Fidesz, the center right party:

made history as the first Hungarian political party to capture a two-thirds majority in the 386-seat parliament since Hungary’s first post-communist elections in 1990.

Fidesz defeated the ruling Socialists who have been  in power for eight years, amid public anger over scandals and the economy.

Sunday’s election results give the ruling Socialists 59 seats and the far-right Jobbik Party, 47 seats

via Business Weeks Hungary’s Center Right Sweep Parliamentary Elections

I couldn’t help but notice how “Jobbik” has been portrayed over the past couple of weeks. Jobbik  voicing “anti-Semitic and anti-Gypsy rhetoric“? I don’t claim to be an expert, but when I was in Budapest over Christmas, I encountered people my own age who were very sympathetic to Jobbik. I am talking about people who work in ad agencies, PR firms, TV stations and soon-to-be lawyers. One law student, attending a prestigious law school in Budapest, is being taught by Krisztina Morvai, a fellow leader of the Jobbik party (to note, how can Morvai be anti-semitic when she has had 3 children with a “Jewish” man? Also to wonder, if someone is pro-Palestine, does that make them anti-semitic? ). The Jobbik supporters I met weren’t anti-semitic, and no more anti-gypsy than any one else in Hungary, …or Europe for that matter.  Why would my generation of  college-educated, internet browsing individuals be sympathetic to a party that was “Hitler-esque”?  I don’t want to use the word “slander” to describe the media coverage, as that is what Jobbik is calling all this negative attention, but I have to agree the coverage certainly isn’t balanced.

What really gets me are the media sources, which are almost entirely from “socialist” countries.  It makes sense then that any news reaching the US about Jobbik would  have a negative spin. None of the stories talk about Jobbik’s economic policies, or ideas on agricultural reform, or how to root out corruption in government.  I would like to take this moment and explain a few things about Jobbik:

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