||Free To Choose…What We Want
Free To Choose…What We Want
Kati Marton’s discontent (Hungary’s Authoritarian Descent, Nov. 3, 2014) with the policies of the current, right-center Hungarian government conveniently slurs over the fact that just this year Victor Orban’s FIDESZ party has been re-elected by the overwhelming majority of Hungarian voters. Sixty two percent of the electorate voted. The election was closely watched; no political entity, domestic or foreign, questions its validity. A second, consecutive time, FIDESZ achieved (and exercises) two-thirds majority in the Hungarian parliament, a feat, to my knowledge, unprecedented in the annals of western-style, multi-party democracies.
Ms. Marton’s discontent echoes similar criticisms of the current Hungarian government by high officials of our State Department and President Obama. This raises an important question: Do we believe in free elections and do we accept their outcome? The answer is a resounding Yes…with one proviso: you elect what we want.
Hungary is a small country, of little geopolitical importance. What’s disturbing is that our government reacted in a similar fashion when Hamas was elected in free elections in Palestine in 2006 and the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt in 2012. What’s more, our government helped, by action and inaction, to topple these elected governments. If this isn’t hypocrisy – euphemistically, realpolitik – I don’t know what it is.