Prime Minister Viktor Orbán: ‘Today, Hungary is the voice of the European people’

In a speech commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Századvég think tank, PM Viktor Orbán offered a retrospective analysis of Hungary's struggle for sovereignty and the institution's role in this journey, highlighting a blend of historical and contemporary perspectives.

The prime minister began by recounting the early days of resistance against communism, emphasizing the broader goal of freedom that transcended academic liberty. On this, he said that "the ultimate goal is a free life, not just a free five years at university. We wanted the communists to fail, and the Soviets to leave."

PM Orbán further emphasized the philosophy of freedom that underpinned these early movements.

"Free life begins with free speech, and free speech begins with free writing. And freedom breeds more freedom and more free people." He explained that this belief encapsulated the ethos of Századvég's formation, underlining its role in fostering an environment where free expression and thought could flourish.

Discussing the radical nature and essence of establishing Századvég, PM Orbán stated, “To establish such a journal was radicalism itself. The launch of Századvég was a radical declaration, that a generation believes not only in change but also in direct and radical change. It was a story of heart and love for the homeland.”

Regarding sovereignty, PM Orbán firmly expressed, “For Hungary to remain sovereign is solely in the interest of us, Hungarians. Nobody else is interested in Hungary remaining a sovereign nation.”

On this, the prime minister jokingly remarked, “In every ceremony, it is important for the devil's name to be spoken,” referring to George Soros.

He highlighted that while Soros “helped anti-communist initiatives” in the 1980s, the fact that Soros “wanted to dominate Central Europe rather than the communists and Soviets” was not obvious at the time.

PM Orbán reassured that by today, we know better. He noted that as “Soros is no longer concealing his schemes, we are aware of the Soros plan, namely flooding Europe with migrants and openly declaring that national borders must be abolished.

According to the prime minister, Soros implies “that European countries' sovereignty must be stripped away”, resulting in an ongoing threat to national sovereignty.

This looming threat, or the “dark forces” as the prime minister called it,, will constantly “besiege the ramparts of sovereignty in the case of Hungary.”

Therefore, PM Orbán emphasized that “for Hungary to remain a sovereign nation, it is necessary that there be no liberal hegemony in our country.”

Underscoring the desire for a diverse and inclusive political environment, countering what he perceives as a monopolistic liberal ideology, PM Orbán affirmed that as “our opponents advocate a hegemonic approach” we must “advocate a pluralistic one. Everyone should have their place under the sun.”

Continuing the theme of democracy, PM Orbán noted that “we can confidently say that our political system is closer to the classic democratic understanding than the Western European model, adding that “in Hungary, the majority of people can identify more with one standpoint than another, which in Hungary is called victory. If one is better, more skillful, and more diligent than the other, then they win. That's competition.”

And within that competition, “right now, Hungary is the voice of the European people,” he added.

“Now is the time for changes in Europe, and for European people to take back European institutions,” Orbán concluded.