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OCTOBER 2022

Hungary’s Stance On Sanctions Reveal Divisions Within Europe

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Hungary’s Stance On Sanctions Reveal Divisions Within Europe

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Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban is the voice of reason in Europe today.

Written by Uriel Araujo, researcher with a focus on international and ethnic conflicts.

Hungary is requesting more natural gas from Russia, an additional  700 million cubic meters of it, besides the quantities specified in previous contracts. The Hungarian Foreign Minister, Péter Szijjártó, visited Moscow last week to talk about such a purchase, despite European Union (EU) sanctions.

He claims it is impossible to decouple from Russian energy sources without devastating Hungary’s economy. His Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, is currently considering it. The Hungarian authorities in Budapest have already secured their country an open-ended exemption from oil embargo, even though they went along with six EU sanctions packages. In any case, Prime Minister Viktor Orban is one of Europe’s most vocal critics of such sanctions.

Reelected for a fourth consecutive term, Orban is currently facing his toughest crisis, with Hungarian inflation reaching double digits, and with some EU funds still not made available for his country due to a quarrel with Brussels over the rule of law in Hungary and over conformity to democratic principles. More recently, Orban was heavily criticized for announcing a state of emergency in his country in May, although such measures actually served Hungarians well during the crisis.

On July 23, in a speech in Romania, Orban stated the obvious: EU sanctions against Moscow have failed. He also said the EU needs a “new strategy” focused on “peace talks” and on “drafting a good peace proposal instead of winning the war”. Although his country is a NATO member, he reiterated Budapest would stay out of the conflict in neighboring Ukraine.

Although the dominant US has largely shaped NATO and EU policies regarding the Russian-Ukrainian crisis, the European bloc has been divided over this issue too from the beginning. Germany has remained reluctant to send weapons to Kiev, for instance. And that is not the only point of contention, as Brexit itself has shown us: it remains an unresolved issue in Northern Ireland to this day.

Already in 2020, the Hungary-led vetoes against the EU budget showed how divided the bloc really was. Amid the post-COVID recovery plan, Brussels stipulated conditions linking European aid to “respecting the rule of law”, and the criteria for that included national policies on migration, a hot topic. The current migration crises in France and in the continent at large further show the hypocrisy of Burssels’s stance in weaponizing budgetary decisions over human rights issues thusly defined.

Poland itself had been facing isolation within the European bloc, over human rights issues. The double-standard visible in the European stance today on Ukraine’s own human rights record speaks volumes. In any case, Poland is now one step nearer an actual Ukrainian-Polish confederation, in spite of the two nations’s historical disagreements. This places Poland in a very strategic role from NATO’s perspective and also adds a lot of tension to its relations with neighboring Hungary.

In the recent aforementioned speech, the Hungarian leader claimed that only Russian-US talks will put an end to the war because the Kremlin “wants security guarantees” which only Washington can provide. It has become quite evident that the war in Ukraine is in fact a “proxy war” between Moscow and Washington, as Lavrov declared in May. Writing for Bloomberg, Hal Brand, a Henry A. Kissinger Distinguished Professor of Global Affairs at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, argued Lavrov is right in this particular regard.

In his speech in Romania, Orban claimed that the whole Western strategy pertaining to Ukraine was built on the premises that 1. Kiev could win a war against Moscow with NATO-provided weapons; 2. sanctions would destabilize Putin’s government; 3. sanctions would also hurt Russia more than Europe itself; 4. the global community would support Europe against Moscow.

According to Orban, all of these premises have been proved wrong, as governments in Europe are falling “like dominoes”, and energy prices keep rising. He added that Kiev cannot win the war because the Russian army has “asymmetric dominance”. “Asymmetric dominance” might not be the proper terminology: it is normally used to describe a phenomenon pertaining to consumers choices in Decision Theory – but, terminology aside, many experts have been saying that, in any possible scenario, no amount of weapons can give Ukraine a victory, due to several reasons.

Thus, whether one likes Viktor Orban or not, it is hard to disagree with him. Although over 8,700 sanctions have been imposed on Moscow, thereby making Russia the most sanctioned country on the earth today (even more so than Iran and North Korea), the ruble has been recently described as the world’s strong currency and Russian trade surplus reached record levels after the war. As for the global community, non-alignment is on the rise in Africa, while the BRICS groups has shown its potential to project itself as a kind of alternative to the Western bloc, and multialignment has become, to some degree, the stance of choice for India, Brazil, and Saudi Arabia.

Budapest’s stance on sanctions in turn is totally rational: many other European countries badly need Russian energy sources, and Hungary even more so (it depends on Moscow for about 85 percent of its gas). Therefore EU embargoes on Russian imports undermine Hungary’s own economy. Although most of Western media is portraying Orban as a radical, he in fact is the voice of reason in Europe today. He is not alone, as more and more politicians in Europe have been challenging the conventional wisdom on these topics. And such voices should be heard.

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hunter bidé lab pork !

eu its a infantil picnic of gay faggots terrorists playing chineze nazism !!!! Bolchevics abortions !!! no liberty no freedom just nazis chikens !!!!! its better to cut the penis of the elite of parazites they make a lot of climate lgbt change !!!!

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hunter bidé lab pork !

eu its the garden of pedo psycho Soros !!! its a nice pedo refuge imploding everything

NATO's PROXYTUTE

Timid reactionary tactics of RF should switch into a wild beast mode and be done with fascist regime in Ukraine ASAP to warn the western bloc that it means business who’s ready to deal with russophobes whoever they might be. table chess game is over.

Erina

Hungary, like the other eastern countries, should leave NATO and join the Russian side, they will have all the necessary raw materials and food, NATO cannot do this and is strictly useless apart from destroying everything

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USA#1!

If hungary chooses wrong it will also be destroyed…

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Erina

hahaha you make us laugh little usa

MrQ

lol> imbécil detectado!!

Zed

Sadly Orban will sell the gas on higher price for hungarian citizens than in the western Europe prices… Sadly old people will not be able to pay that high price, and they voted for him on April… He over spent before the election, and now he takes back everything and more from the poors. I am envy to russians, because they have a true statesmens like Putin.

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aka22

Text cenzored by AI”” As for the Hungarians having to pay more than France for example for the crude oil , please bare in mind that EUR is not Hungary’s curency as it is not still in most east European countries and Hungary can still print his forints and give that freshly printed amount to the old folk that voted for him to pay for the gas bill. The young will gladly accept the burden of inflation because the old folks are their own old relatives.

And I totally disagree gas prices will be higher in Hungary than the rest of Europe once a Hungary – Russia deal is signed. It will totally be otherwise, give it time till end of the year.

Pamfil Military Academy

Wrong. very wrong. Hungary will have the cheapest gas prices in all EU.

Stephen Masson

Wise man

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NATO's PROXYTUTE

Timid reactionary tactics of RF should switch into a wild beast mode and be done with fascist regime in Ukraine ASAP to warn the western bloc that it means business who’s ready to deal with russophobes whoever they might be. table chess game is over.

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Peter Jennings

PM Orban has a choice. Either turn over all power to Brussels or go without any EU assistance, which would probably ruin the country and any chances of re-election. Perhaps PM Orban should have realised just what it would mean by jumping into bed with an autocratic NWO organisation?

The PM should do a Hexit before the EU sinks and drags the country down with it.

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zman

In the end, any EU ‘assistance’ will ruin the country anyway. It’s better to go without and deal with problems as best they can. EU/IMF/US assistance always comes with strings and usually any recipient ends up regretting it. EU help=kontrol. If he really wants the EU to shit, he should suggest a country-wide referendum…leave the EU and NATO, then join with eastern nations and BRICS. Hell, both are dying anyway. That would be a death sentence..not for Hungary, but for Orban. What a shot to the head of NATO/EU that would be…but they’d never let him live after that.

Pamfil Military Academy

Orban is a real old school patriot. Very different than the stinky mob crooks from Bruxelles. He would have been discarded by the sorosist ring of pedophiles long ago, but he have a serious trump card which is heavily backed by all hungarians, including the fake jew Soros, called GREAT HUNGARY. For that reason they let him loose.

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