A Note from Hungary: We Are Not a Colony
As American liberals panic over Tucker Carlson’s visit to Viktor Orban, Hungarians are watching.
“Western liberals cannot accept that inside the Western civilisation there’s a conservative, national alternative, which is more succesful in the level of everyday life than the liberal ones.”
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban correctly named the key reason why our small Central European country is at the center of the world’s attention. Speaking to Tucker Carlson this past week, the prime minister reached millions of American viewers.
We as Hungarians cannot possibly overestimate the importance of this interview on Tucker Carlson Tonight. Finally American viewers had the opportunity to hear Orban’s own words, without the blatant lies and constant vilifications of the mainstream liberal media. Two years ago, President Donald Trump received Viktor Orban in the White House, but ahead of their meeting, most of the press’s questions were addressed to the president. Our colleagues in D.C. had the opportunity to ask things of Orban himself, but once again it turned out that liberal media is not really interested in facts. They have painted a picture of Orban and they wouldn’t let reality ruin it.
Liberal commentators have gone crazy since Carlson announced that he is in Budapest, and speaking to Viktor Orban. Suddenly it seems that there are more Hungary experts in the United States than Hungarians in Hungary. Most of the articles and tweets have been examples of sloppy journalism, arrogance, and entitlement. Fake news about Carlson’s visit was shared by mainstream outlets proud of their strict fact-checking policies.
One of the most astonishing thing about these ridiculous articles was the idea that U.S. conservatives and Trump supporters can follow Hungary’s example. Here are a few revealing examples: “Authoritarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban is everything American authoritarians wish Trump was,” Slate warns. “Tucker Carlson is broadcasting from Hungary because its authoritarian, anti-immigrant leader has set a model for America’s far right,” Insider explained. “U.S. conservatives yearn for Orban’s Hungary,” the Washington Post notes. “Tucker Carlson’s Orban Lovefest Is a Dark Glimpse of the Future MAGA Wants,” the Daily Beast adds hysterically.
Well this is flattering, isn’t it? We are a Central European country of 10 million and our Prime Minister can apparently change the course of U.S. politics. This is pretty cool.
According to some tweets, the possibility of American conservatives following Hungary’s example is “chilling.” Liberals are terrified by the thought that more and more people realize there’s a successful conservative alternative to their open societies. Illegal immigration can be stopped. Your children don’t have to attend Drag Queen Story Hours. Your identity, your heritage, your family can be protected. You won’t be cancelled if you disagree with liberal dogmas. People can regularly share their opinion via the national consultations and referanda to ensure that the government has the support of the people in the questions which determine the country’s future for several generations. This is all possible!
But for liberals this is “chilling.” Why are these so-called democrats afraid of the people? Seems like a paradox, but actually it’s not. Liberals want to tell the people what to do because liberals are convinced they know better than the people what’s good for them. They want to abolish nation states, identities, families and every obstacle in their way. They constantly talk about human rights but increasingly, people in Western Europe and in the U.S. start to feel like second-class citizens in their own countries. They slam Orban but in fact they are the ones who take away freedom of speech and even the freedom of conscience.
Hungarian conservatives don’t want to tell any other country how they should live. Prime Minister Orban has always been clear about this. If Western European countries want to handle their demographic and workforce problems with mass immigration, it’s up to them. But don’t force this upon us! And by the way, don’t force this upon your own people without asking them.
Hungary leads the way by setting an example. The Hungarian model is successful. It is possible to stop illegal migration and it is possible to support families and have a growing economy at the same time. Socialists and liberals in Hungary used to tell us to “dare to be small,” but we dare to be big.
This scares Western liberals because they want us to “know our place.” Western liberal elites have become used to dictating the direction of the E.U. and they are terrified when their own citizens started to ask questions, such as: If Hungary can do that, why can’t we?
When I read the furious tweets about Carlson’s visit to Hungary, they strongly reminded me of the attitude of Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, who said that Hungary should withdraw its anti-LGBT-propaganda child protection law “and get on its knees.” Viktor Orban repeated his comments which he said earlier at a press conference about the Hungarian soccer team’s refusal to bend the knee before the Euro games: “Hungarians only kneel before God, the homeland, and the woman they love.”
This is not the attitude we are expected to show by the liberals. How does this little Central European—or in their vocabulary, Eastern European—country dare to overcome its own weight? Rutte’s demands, the furious tweets about Tucker Carlson’s visit, that’s the same energy. If we want to protect ourselves against the aggresive liberal colonisation of minds—and markets!—we really have to believe that it is possible to make it stop.
As Tucker Carlson concluded after his visit to the border, stopping illegal immigration is not really a matter of money or technology, first and foremost it’s a matter of political will. Well we have this will. The political competition, as Orban said in his interview, is still open, even in Western Europe.
This fight is not over. And we shoot for the stars.
Mariann Őry is head of the foreign desk at Hungarian conservative daily Magyar Hírlap.