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Marking the coming centenary of the signing of the WWI Trianon Peace Treaty under which two-thirds of Hungary’s territory was ceded to neighbouring countries, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in his state-of-the-nation address that one hundred years after the “death sentence” that was the Trianon treaty, “we’re alive and Hungary is still here.” “Not only are we alive but we have also freed ourselves from the clutches of a hostile ring of alliances,” the prime minister told a crowd at Budapest’s Várkert Bazár. Orbán said Hungary was now finding common ground with neighbouring Slovakia, Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia, and was in a position to engage in broad cooperation and form alliances with them. “History has again given central European peoples a chance to build a new alliance based on their own national interests, allowing us to defend ourselves against threats from both the east and the west,” Orbán said.
The prime minister also said that the key to the nation’s prosperity was the restoration of its self-esteem. He said that the citizens of every troubled country could only regain their personal self-esteem with the return of their own nation’s self-esteem. Orbán said that in 2010 the objective of his incoming government had been “to prove to ourselves and to the world that we are still somebody”.
“We figured that we would either find a path or create one for ourselves,” he said, adding that the only option left for his government had been the latter since “the path set by Brussels and Washington was unacceptable for us.” Orbán said that looking back after ten years he could say “with due modesty” that “we figured out what to do and we did it”. He said his government had “sent the IMF home”, managed to pay back the loans early, created 850,000 jobs, put the country’s finances in order and launched schemes to help “a reunification of the nation”, and reconnected Hungarian communities beyond the borders with Hungary. He said that in economic reports released in Brussels this week “the whole of Europe may read that in 2019 the Hungarian economy registered the highest growth rate on the whole continent”.
Turning to the period between 2002 and 2010, Orbán said “Hungary was bankrupted by a government made up of former communists and its liberal policies.” “This example supports the assumption that there is no such thing as a liberal. A liberal is nothing else but a communist with a degree,” he said, adding that “if we had heeded their advice, Hungary right now would be lying in a hospital ward with the tubes of IMF and Brussels loans sticking out of all of its limbs and [US financier] George Soros would be holding the loan faucet.” “None of this is an exaggeration,” the prime minister said. “I, who have spent more than 30 years in politics, have seen Soros attempt to rob Hungary on three occasions with my own eyes.”