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Hungary 1956

November 4 2016 at 10:23 AM
GeoffreyRoberts 

 
Here is the link to my article on the 60th anniversary of the Hungarian Uprising:

http://www.irishexaminer.com/viewpoints/analysis/leadership-could-have-saved-the-hungarian-revolution-428919.html



 
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White man in the Hammersmith Palais

Re: Hungary 1956

November 4 2016, 5:17 PM 

While you rightly point out that Hungary was an Axis power during the war, that doesn't give the full flavour of the country. In 1919, the Hungarian Soviets were drowned in blood - by Horthy and his regime which, on a superficial level (it was in reality an authoritarian dictatorship) won elections up until the second world war. The period after the 1919 revolution was one of 'white terror' where it was quite acceptable for communists, socialists and Jews to be murdered by fascist death squads. Horthy passed anti-Semitic laws. During the war, Hungary fought on the Russian Front and participated willingly in the Holocaust, transferring about 500,000 Hungarian Jews to the death camps. At the time of the Soviets arrival, there was a fully fascist regime.

I suppose if the Soviets made a mistake after the war it was allowing some pretence of independence and democracy in a country which had been a willing participant in war crimes.

As it was, the people in the Hungary of 1956 would have been little different (in political and class composition) to that of 1944. Large numbers were violently opposed to any form of socialism and were simply waiting for any opportunity to try and overthrow it and happily use violence too.

I still find it unbelievable that anyone who was actually a communist would leave the party over Hungary 1956.

At a completely different level there are good reasons to argue 'What if?' about the alternatives to establishing peoples democracies in countries where socialist or communist support was small before the war but in any event. as we've seen recently in eastern Europe, those right wing views don't just evaporate in time. Look at the recent rise of fascism in the western part of the Ukraine.

 
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Harsanyi_Janos

Re: Hungary 1956

November 8 2016, 4:22 PM 

"I suppose if the Soviets made a mistake after the war it was allowing some pretence of independence and democracy in a country which had been a willing participant in war crimes. "

Since Croatia, Slovakia, and Rumania fought just as willingly pershaps you would recommend having no semblance of independence for them too.

What would you recommend then since they couldn't be trusted to run their own "people's democracy" under Soviet occupation? mass deportation to wonderful new lives in Siberia as was done to the Tartars and ethnic Poles and Germans? Or perhaps colonisation or a nice Empire where subject people could live under the wise tutelage if Russians (who of course never collaborated with Germany and of course are immune to right wing views today)?

I

 
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White man in the Hammersmith Palais

Re: Hungary 1956

November 8 2016, 11:33 PM 

Germany and Austria were occupied after the war, their territories divided between the four occupying powers. In the case of Germany, the occupation officially ended in 1955 although in practise, it ended in 1949. In the case of Austria the situation was different, it being regarded as a victim of German aggression, as a result it became fully independent in 1955.

There was no suggestion that either country was fit to rule itself, given what crimes against humanity had taken place on their territories.

For many people after the war, the intention had been that Germany would be reduced to an agricultural only economy, a fate which was avoided as a result of cold war rearmament.

When I was a student I discovered that my university library had a full run of the reports made by the US occupying powers. After a while of ploughing through them I was disgusted reading reports written by idealistic young Americans who were chasing down Nazi war criminals and were either finding that they were disappearing into the hands of US military intelligence or (even worse) into the British sector where it seemed to be policy to appoint former Nazis into administration roles. No danger of elections there.

 
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