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Balint Magyar on the Parallels Between Hungary and Russia

“Hungary is a mafia state - the only one in the EU, by the way, and very similar to Russia. The government acts like a centralized and hierarchical criminal organization,” our Senior Research Fellow Balint Magyar said in an interview with Die Zeit.

“The two basic motives of such autocracies are to concentrate political power and accumulate personal wealth. But if now the state is run like a criminal organization and the EU wants to teach the government how to fight corruption, it is like trying to teach a lion to become a vegetarian: In the end, it will be the lion that teaches you. In a classic mafia state like Russia, the source of money is natural resources. But Hungary has no oil or gas. Our natural resources are the money of Western European taxpayers,” he continued.

“When the EU punishes Hungary, it assumes that it is a democracy and that the government will be removed through democratic mechanisms because the people realize that their government is corrupt. But this hesitant, Merkelian type of policy has only strengthened the Hungarian autocracy,” he argued.

Read the full interview (in German) here (subscription may be required).

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