President Janos Ader and Prime Minister Viktor Orban in separate messages felicitated the anniversary of victory of the Islamic Revolution to President Hassan Rouhani and First Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri.
In his message, President Ader underlined the efforts of both countries in expansion of bilateral cooperation in all fields, which secure interests of the two countries.
More BackChannels pieces on Hungary’s drift toward nationalist socialism and Iran:
There have been additional references to Hungary in relation to other subjects, e.g., European reparations to the Jewish community, but it’s the drift into nationalism that catches play here and with it movement within the European aligned NATO state to cement relationships with the Islamic Revolution in Iran.
As as happened over the course of Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan’s tenure, drift toward fascism may draw a strong liberal response from the middle and thereby stall a conservative state movement.
Similar dynamics have also surfaced in Kiev — Ukraine protests take center-stage at EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels | News | DW.DE | 10.02.2014 – which population has found itself in The Bear Trap, i.e., aesthetically, politically, and spiritually aligned with European modernity and its social values but beholden to a state in which the “vertical of power” — the Autocrat — determines the character, position, and values of the state and states it makes its buffer.
Hungarians may express themselves, take to the streets, and throw fits, but Papa Putin with the checkbook and gas tap has sufficient clout for leaving the Ukrainian government to shrug off its liberal critics.
That particular Bear has also aligned itself with Iranian interests — the better to drum up defense and nuclear sales business — and to the extent that it also holds Hungarians in its paws by way of energy supply and sales, it may stalls Hungary’s westward inclinations and, possibly, encourage those who feel comfortable with thuggish mafia-style Putinesque Russian politics.
The effects of the axis — Putin-Assad-Khamenei — made visible by the collapse of Syria, a lingering post-Soviet artifact may be just emergent in the discussion eastern European politics.
If I had budget plus swift graphic arts I would do this with clusters, but a linear verbal illustration might suffice:
Putin-Assad-Khamenei (Middle East) | Putin-Orban-Yanukovych (Eastern Europe)
Where tanks may once have been dispatched, cash and energy may suffice — and money gets around without conscience.
Viktor Orbán in Moscow: “Putin’s new little kitten”? | Hungarian Spectrum – 2/1/2014: “Moreover, one must keep in mind that for Hungary Russia is a much more important partner than vice versa. In trade relations the Hungarian share of Russian imports is only 2%. On the other hand, Hungary because of its dependence on natural gas and oil is heavily dependent on Russian goodwill.”
Putin $14 Billion Nuclear Deal Wins Orban Alliance – Bloomberg – 1/15/2014: “The deal shows Putin’s ability to use Russia’s control over energy resources to extend his sway beyond the former Soviet Union. Last month, he pledged a $15 billion bailout and a cut in the price of natural gas to Ukraine and promised to lend as much as $2 billion to Belarus.”
BBC News – Putin meets Ukraine’s Yanukovych on Sochi sidelines – 2/8/2014: “Under pressure from Moscow, President Yanukovych had refused to sign a far-reaching association and trade agreement with the EU.”
European Union and the United States
From the above cited BBC news link: “Washington’s European envoy Victoria Nuland was heard using an expletive to disparage the EU’s handling of the crisis and revealing Washington’s determination to influence the outcome of the Ukrainian struggle.”
Марионетки Майдана – YouTube – 2/4/2014.
Obama cancels meeting with Putin amid Russia tensions – NBC News.com: “Given our lack of progress on issues such as missile defense and arms control, trade and commercial relations, global security issues, and human rights and civil society in the last twelve months, we have informed the Russian Government that we believe it would be more constructive to postpone the summit until we have more results from our shared agenda,” the White House said.
The collapse of the Soviet Union left Soviet business and political relationships as well as Soviet style in place: at least as much would seem embodied in the post-KGB, now FSB person of Russian President Putin who has accepted the defeat of Russian communism — or the armored covering of it — but not of Russian empire and the idea of a Russian way of doing things, even if regress to a 19th Century stance with class empowerment through patronage and equal footing with despots similarly endowed becomes the price paid by Russia’s constituency for the privilege of being different, quintessentially Russian, and now as in the Romanov-then, also cut out of the money but restored in pride.
SOCHI, Russia — A Russia in search of global vindication kicked off the Sochi Olympics looking more like a Russia that likes to party, with a pulse-raising opening ceremony about fun and sports instead of terrorism, gay rights and coddling despots.
And that’s just the way Russian President Vladimir Putin wants these Winter Games to be.
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