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While Hungarians remembered on October 23rd the martyrs of the 1956 Revolution – the everyday men and women, boys and girls who took up arms and made a heroic stand against Soviet military might on the streets of Budapest – the direct descendants of the Communist Party cadre that helped break the revolution were busy whitewashing their grandparents and – just for good measure – allying themselves with Hungary’s anti-Semitic, far-right in a shameful maneuver for political power.
During the state commemoration of Hungary's anti-Soviet uprising of 1956, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said neither Europe nor Hungary could survive if they turned against themselves and went against everything “keeping them alive”.
In his speech honoring the martyrs of Hungary’s 1956 Revolution and Freedom Fight, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said that he has no doubt that the youth of today’s Pest would stand strong just as their grandparents did in 1956. After all, the PM said, “a homeland can only exist as long as the patriots outnumber those that align with foreign powers.”
Today, October 23, marks the sixty-third anniversary of the beginning of our 1956 Revolution. On this autumn day in 1956, students at Budapest’s Technical University marched to József Bem Square, issuing a list of demands, referred to as the 16 points, that called for the end of the one-party state and the holding of free and democratic parliamentary elections, the country joining the United Nations and leaving the recently established Warsaw Pact.
“We would have never thought,” Prime Minister Orbán said, that 29 years after the fall of the Soviet Union, Europe – once again – has to face a massive challenge. This time, it’s not “an external military threat, American or Russian endeavors that put Europe’s future in jeopardy,” but it’s Europe itself. This is why “we have to vote for the future of patriotism and national pride,” the PM said.
October 23rd is a national holiday in Hungary, marking the anniversary of the beginning of the 1956 Revolution and Freedom Fight when our compatriots defied the Communist regime and stood up to Soviet military might. For decades, we were forbidden to celebrate it, to even talk about it, but today it’s among our most important national holidays.
On October 23rd, Hungarians celebrate the brave women and men who stood up to Soviet communist oppression and fought for their freedom against one of the world’s biggest armies. After a few glorious days of victory, the 1956 Hungarian Revolution was eventually overpowered by overwhelming military force, but the freedom fight drove the first nail into the coffin of communist oppression in the world.
Since 2000, Hungary remembers the victims of communism each year on February 25th. The totalitarian oppression in the name of this “mad ideology,” in the words of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, shattered millions of lives all over the world. Today's memorial is the day we light a candle for communism’s victims, many of whom still live among us.
Government Spokesperson Zoltán Kovács has responded to an article published in the European edition of Politico Politico.eu on Hungary's 1956 Revolution, calling out the article's biasfollowing an unsavory report on the Hungarian Revolution, the article in question was cited as being biased and disrespectful
It began on a Tuesday afternoon, a beautiful autumn day on the 23rd of October 1956. Students gathered in peaceful protest with their manifesto calling for Hungary’s independence from all foreign powers, particularly the Soviet troops occupying the country. They demanded freedom of opinion and expression, the rights of free people in a democratic system.
Audiences will be treated to a whole host of remembrance events dedicated solely to the 1956 Revolution, which will help them learn more about the milestone and sympathize with those who lost their lives during the tragic events that took place 60 years ago
It was a Tuesday, that October 23rd in 1956. The whole thing began as a peaceful, student demonstration, young people with a manifesto asserting the right to be independent from all foreign powers and that all Hungarians should enjoy the rights of free people in a democratic system. The crowds grew as the demonstrations moved throughout the city. By nightfall, State Security Police had fired on a crowd of unarmed demonstrators outside the state radio building, killing many.
Some have wondered when that fateful turn began, that moment that marked “the beginning of the end of the Soviet Empire.” For those of us who endured Soviet oppression behind the Iron Curtain, it came in 1956, brought about by a scrappy pack of kids, many of whom paid the ultimate price for their courage.