“The world is a dangerous place to live in; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.”
(Albert Einstein – refugee from Nazi Germany)

Friday, March 23, 2012

Early steps of the reborn fascist tendency

Example for early phases of the tendency towards reborn of Nazi ideologies, movements and organizations in Hungary and also responsibility of the political parties and public persons about it.(1):

Freedom of speech in Hungary has all too often become a freedom for Nazi-speech(a), which is sometimes defended by the very people it attacks and seeks to destroy– as the story of Hungarian politician Miklós Gáspár Tamás[MGT](2) shows. Tamás began as a Marxist, became a Liberal and MP of the Liberal SZDSZ party from 1990 until 1994, returned to Marxism again and is now one of the leaders of a small left-wing group.

Two main ideologies compete in Hungary today: that of the extreme right-wing party Jobbik, which is openly antisemitic, anti-Roma and anti-gay, and that of the ruling party Fidesz, which considers itself a party of the middle pretending to combat antisemitism, while hosting and protecting violently antisemitic personalities.
[MGT] steadfastly declined to attack antisemites– because of his commitment to “intellectual freedom.” He was less tolerant(b) when Budapest Rabbi György Landeszmann committed a famous gaffe in February 1993 by publicly stating (after many provocative questions) that there would not be any Hungarian culture without the Jews.

Miklós Gáspár Tamás– who had declared in March 1992: “
We must protect every party, every thought, even those we feel to be unsupportable(4.1)– one year later called Dr. Landeszmann, the former head of the Jewish archives of Hungary, “a stupid and mischievous Hungarian citizen […] who has read nothing since his A-levels.” He then went on (and I translate only his less vitriolic remarks): “Considering the idiotic statements by Mr. Landeszmann, more short-tempered people than me might be tempted to say: ‘If Mr. Chief Rabbi is so displeased with us, why don’t we ask him, with blushing face and trembling lids, to kindly emigrate to Israel.’ […] How could the Jews, an allegedly wise people […] charge Landeszmann with the leadership of their community?(4.2)
Yet when István Csurka(5), one of the Hungary’s most outspoken and influential antisemites, died recently Tamás published a long obituary in a liberal weekly. While not denying Csurka’s fierce antisemitism, Tamás stated: “
[Csurka] was not a Nazi in the sense of Jobbik [the ultra-right-wingers], a party that does not really care about the Hungarian people. […] May he rest in peace, he was not the worst.”(...)

(1) Karl Pfeifer: A compulsive urge, 2012/03/20. http://hurryupharry.org/2012/03/20/a-compulsive-urge/

Tamás Gáspár Miklós (TGM) on Wikipedia ( in Hungarian - no English version but French, Spanish, Russian and Esperanto (none of them is sufficient complex articles)): http://hu.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tam%C3%A1s_G%C3%A1sp%C3%A1r_Mikl%C3%B3s
One can find many articles and a lot of information of him in English all over the web, e.g.:
The Left and Marxism in Eastern Europe; Gáspár Miklós Tamás Interviewed by Imre Szeman, brief version: http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2010/tamas170410.html
full version: http://www.mediationsjournal.org/articles/the-left-and-marxism-in-eastern-europe

The author Karl Pfeifer wrote the Hungarian version of the post (1) with exact references and quotes:
2012/03/02: Karl Pfeifer: Ellenvélemény, ÉS (a weekly for democratic-liberal intellectuals): http://www.es.hu/karl_pfeifer;ellenvelemeny;2012-02-29.html
(4.1) 1992/03/15: on a demostration TGM said (in Hungarian): „...nem egy pártot, nem egy gondolkodásmódot és nem egy ízlést kell védenünk, hanem minden ízlést, minden pártot és minden gondolatot, még azt is, amelyet elviselhetetlennek érzünk”
(4.2) 1993/03/18: TGM wrote (in Hungarian) in Magyar Hírlap,(a daly, that time left-liberal today rude nazi)
Landeszmann főrabbi buta magyar állampolgár, kártékony magyar állampolgár (...) a zsidók állítólag okos emberek. De hát ez az állapot nem tarthat sokáig, ha olyanok tanítják őket a szentre és igazra, mint Landeszmann főrabbi.

Landeszmann affair similarity to Kertész one:
Eva S. Balogh: The Ákos Kertész affair, 2011/09/07: http://esbalogh.typepad.com/hungarianspectrum/2011/09/the-%C3%A1kos-kert%C3%A9sz-affair.html?cid=6a00e009865ae588330163026c3f87970d
"This case is somewhat similar to the "Landeszmann case" of 1993 that kept the Hungarian nationalistic right excited for a very long time.

György Landeszmann was a rabbi who, after hearing István Csurka's seemingly endless antisemitic rantings, got tired of the tirades and said something not too flattering about Hungarian culture without the participation of Hungarians of Jewish origin. The reaction was incredible. Heti Magyarország, the right-wing paper of the day, published a whole book in which Károly Alexa, the editor, collected all the articles dealing with the subject. Believe it or not, there are 266 pages filled with the stuff that followed a couple of ill-chosen sentences. Let me add that Landeszmann was right about the enormous contributions that Hungarians of Jewish origin have made to modern Hungarian culture in general, at least in the last one hundred years. By the way, in the end Landeszmann emigrated to Canada."

(5) Nazi writer in the 1956 National Pantheon

(6) Some relating source with additional references in Hungarian:
A gatya bõ, a barack fütyül, 2008/02/26: http://www.judapest.org/a-gatya-bo-a-barack-futyul/
1993: bőgatya és fütyülős barack, 2008/02/26: http://index.hu/belfold/tegnapiujsag/2008/02/26/1993/
(a)  Especially for 2002 the right of free-speech both that of assembly gradually has been appropriated by far-rights.

(b)  Typical Hungarian liberal double standard. Some editors of this blog have been experiencing directly  how the liberal free-speech fervours could be angry, dismissive, intolerant, even rude personal when getting criticism or debate. Some times their reaction goes beyond that of far-rights. Now the GTM's reply to the Pfeifer's critical article(1) proves again this statement of ours: ÉS, 23/03/2012: Tamás Gáspár Miklós: „Ellenvélemény” (MGT: "Opposition" ), http://www.es.hu/tamas_gaspar_miklos;8222;ellenvelemeny8221;;2012-03-07.html . Although the truth is that GTM doesn't call himself liberal today. After all we cannot say much more better about the attitude of Hungarian "left-wings" too.
We dare say there is no doubt about the responsibility also of the Hungarian liberals for the strengthen of the fascist tendency.

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