Adam LeBor: „Don´t gang up on Hungary. It´s far from dictatorship“

Englischsprachiger Beitrag von Adam LeBor zu Ungarn. LeBor übt deutliche Kritik an dem Tun der Regierung, mahnt jedoch zur Besonnenheit:

Is this an act of reckless cultural vandalism? Yes. Should we be concerned about Fidesz’s centralisation of power? Absolutely. Does it mean Hungary is sliding into dictatorship? No. Such wild talk helps nobody, least of all the modernisers in the Government trying to drag the country into the 21st century.

In Britain we should know the difference between an overcentralised democracy and a dictatorship. Mr Orbán’s model is not Vladimir Putin but Margaret Thatcher. She too was elected on a wave of hope after years of rule by a weak left-wing government; she centralised power to an unparalleled degree; she waged cultural warfare against those whom she considered dangerous liberals and tolerated no dissent in her party. Baroness Thatcher visited Budapest in 1990 to a rapturous reception. She would feel quite at home now.“


2 Kommentare zu “Adam LeBor: „Don´t gang up on Hungary. It´s far from dictatorship“

  1. Das US State Department hat ein Interview des stellvert. Staatsekretärs Phil Gordon, das von Balázs Naray vom Ungarischen Radio gemacht wurde publiziert, Hier ein Auszug.

    ASSISTANT SECRETARY GORDON: I think the debate about the media law has been a distraction to the start of the Hungarian EU presidency. And it’s not for me or for the United States to dictate to Hungary what its media laws or any other laws should be, and it’s not for the European Union to dictate to Hungary. It’s a democracy and it’s up to Hungarians.
    That said, when I say it’s been a distraction, clearly there are widespread international concerns and criticisms of what’s in the law. And to the extent those aren’t accurate, Hungarians need to explain to their friends why they may be misled, but I think Hungarians should also listen when there is such international concern about freedom of expression which is so critical to democracy. You mentioned Hungary’s reputation. Hungary has a reputation for being a democratic country based on rule of law and freedom, and that’s precious. And we believe that a free media, free expression is central to democracy and so hope that Hungarians will take the concerns that have been expressed seriously.
    QUESTION: It was one interesting remark from the Hungarian President. I would like to ask you about this. This is about the values of democracy. He said last week on an international press conference that in the media law there are questions of the values. He said that in this regulation the protection of children, the next generations, are more important than the freedom of speech. Could he be right? The freedom of speech is for the United States Constitution, is a core point.
    ASSISTANT SECRETARY GORDON: Freedom of speech is absolutely a core point for the United States. I don’t think you can put in opposition broad categories like this — protection of children, freedom of speech. These are the concepts that democratic societies need to discuss. I think one of the things people are concerned about in the media law is who gets to be the watchdog and who gets to decide when these categories are met. And certainly in the American system what’s important is a sense of checks and balances. That even winners of democratic majorities don’t get to decide on behalf of the society as a whole what the definition of unbalanced is or what the definition of family values is. And that’s why even when one obviously supports broad concepts like protection of children and balanced media, it is important to make sure that there is comfort throughout society with who gets to make that decision. I know that there’s been a lot of debate in the Hungarian media law whether Hungary has got that just right.
    QUESTION: One more thing about the perspectives of investment in Hungary from the United States. Positive and negative measures that would affect the investments. I mean Hungary the corporate tax has been reduced last year. On the other hand there are some so-called crisis taxes. So what could boost the investments in Hungary? Or these two are in balance?
    ASSISTANT SECRETARY GORDON: First of all, Americans in general and people around the world, see Hungary as a positive place to invest. A well educated population, member of the European Union, advantageous geographical site. Hungary is an attractive place for investment, low corporate taxes, and that’s why it attracts significant investment.
    On the other side of the ledger, there are questions about the crisis taxes. Investors crave stability and they want to know not just what the tax rate is but what it’s likely to be and whether it’s likely to change, and in particular when it comes to the crisis taxes, there would be the concern, could they be renewed, how long will they go on for? I think it’s important to clarify and provide stability for investors.
    I also think, going back to debate about the media law and other discussions of democracy in Hungary, that the overall perception of Hungary as a stable democracy, member of the European Union, helps shape the climate. Even if there’s not a direct link between media regulations and investment, it’s all part of an overall picture and Hungary and all countries do well for themselves when they are seen as stable democracies in the European mainstream.
    QUESTION: The very last question, can we hope or can we welcome in May, in Budapest, or is it a question of consideration, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton?
    ASSISTANT SECRETARY GORDON: I don’t have any announcements to make about the Secretary’s travel. The Secretary would love to come to Hungary and I’m sure will do so at the right opportunity.
    QUESTION: Thank you very much.

    Das ganze Interview kann gelesen werden auf:

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