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NATO is a defence alliance and Hungary had joined for the original goal to ensure protection and not to interfere with a conflict outside the alliance’s territory, thereby raising the threat of a world war, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in an interview to public radio, calling it “absurd” that “NATO is dragging its members into a world war rather than protecting them.” He said western European nations were striving to win the war and they felt safer because they were geographically far from Russia. Those countries saw Ukraine and central Europe as a buffer zone, he said. “It’s the same as it used to be, right? That’s what they used us for.” Orbán said the pressure he was withstanding from Europe was growing with every summit. Resistance, he said, depended on whether “we have the country backing us”, and whether Hungary was united in its pro-peace stance, “whether we are brave enough to stand up for peace and to say we are not ready to die for Ukraine.”
Meanwhile, the prime minister said that bringing back military conscription “is the internal affair of all nations”, not a matter to be decided as part of “an imperial army of the European Union in Brussels”, because “others making decisions on Hungarian blood is unacceptable”. Hungary has introduced defence studies into secondary school curriculum, Orbán said. “We are doing a lot of things that will make Hungary and the whole of society capable of self-defence without conscription,” he said. He praised professional soldiers as the “best of society,” ready to change their way of life to defend the homeland. Orbán said the values represented by servicemen such as discipline, self-sacrifice, comradeship and team work should be present in other groups, too, and reinforced by programmes such as the reserves training, military secondary education. “And summer programmes bringing young people closer to the idea bearing arms, to honour and love the homeland”, without re-introducing conscription, he added.