Revolution in Hungary by Thomas Ország-Land

In Europe, history, politics, society on October 3, 2012 at 07:00

From: Revolution in Hungary: A Country Still Strangled by Political Corruption by Thomas Ország-Land, New English Review,

FROM REVOLUTION to revolution, I have watched Hungary evolve over the past half-century.

The more dramatic of the two revolutions took place in the autumn of 1956 – just 56 years ago this month (Oct) – when a beaten, starved and humiliated subject people of fewer than 10 million souls managed to stare down the brutal might of the Soviet Union. The more triumphant revolution may be unfolding now that Hungary’s divided democratic opposition forces are learning to collaborate against the vicious remnants of political corruption inherited from the Communist system.

Would the people who marched on parliament all those years ago one heady late-October evening have been prepared to risk everything for the petty power manipulations now being pursued inside that building in their name? Certainly not. Was the revolution worth the sacrifice? Probably, for those among us who have survived unhurt.

Hungary in 1956 was very different from the picture that has been handed down to us in all but the very latest history books. The country had experienced all the horror of the delayed first industrial revolution of the region, concentrated into a few brief years by the merciless pace of Soviet economic planning. Traditionally the breadbasket of Europe, Hungary was starving as a result of the Communists’ ruthless policy of forced agricultural collectivisation.

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Reposted with permission from: New English Review


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