Hungary’s Orban: It’s a ‘strong challenge’ having Netanyahu, Trump out of office

Controversial PM laments that ‘Hungarian-Conservative Judeo-Christians’ lost two major supporters, praises former Israeli premier for investing ‘a lot of energy’ in central Europe

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban (L) hold a Rubik's Cube at the Hungary-Israel Business Forum in Budapest, Hungary, on July 19, 2017. (Haim Zach/ GPO/ Flash90)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban (L) hold a Rubik's Cube at the Hungary-Israel Business Forum in Budapest, Hungary, on July 19, 2017. (Haim Zach/ GPO/ Flash90)

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban lamented that the elections of new leaders in Israel and the United States are a “challenge for him,” in an interview with Fox News, broadcast Thursday.

Speaking with the network’s Tucker Carlson, Orban said former US president Trump’s “America First” policy was a positive foreign policy for central Europe.

“And the same for Bibi Netanyahu,” Orban said, using the ex-premier’s nickname.

He went on to praise Netanyahu as a “good friend” of Hungary. “When he was in power, he always invested a lot of energy in having a good relationship with central European countries,” he said.

“But he lost also,” Orban continued, “so the Hungarian-Conservative Judeo-Christian democratic syncing lost two main international supporters, and the opponents came into power.”

The Hungarian premier asserted his country was now in uncharted waters.

“This is a totally new circumstance around Hungary,” he said. “For me as a politician, it’s a strong challenge.”

Hungarian PM Viktor Orban Talks To Tucker

Of the nearly 200 different counties on the face of the earth, precisely one has an elected leader who publicly identifies a western-style conservative. His name is Viktor Orbán, and he’s the prime minister of Hungary. Hungary is a small country in the middle of Central Europe. It has no navy or nuclear weapons. Its GDP is smaller than New York State’s. You wouldn’t think leaders in Washington would pay much attention to Hungary, but they do, obsessively. By rejecting the tenets of neoliberalism, Viktor Orbán has enraged them. What does Orbán believe? Just a few years ago, his views would have seemed moderate and conventional. He thinks families are more important than banks. He believes countries need borders. For saying these things out loud, Orbán has been vilified. Left wing NGO’s have denounced him as a fascist, a destroyer of democracy. Last fall, Joe Biden suggested he’s a totalitarian dictator. Official Washington despises Viktor Orbán so thoroughly that many, including neocons in and around the state department, are backing the open anti-Semites running against him in next April’s elections. We’ve watched all of this from the United States, and wondered if what we’d heard could be true. This week we came to Hungary to see for ourselves. We sat down with Orbán for a couple of long conversations.

Posted by Tucker Carlson Tonight on Thursday, August 5, 2021

In June, Naftali Bennett was sworn in as prime minister after a diverse coalition of eight parties formed a new government ending Netanyahu’s 15-year rule, including the last 12 consecutively. Trump was replaced as US president after losing the November 2020 election to Joe Biden.

Budapest has in recent years been Jerusalem’s staunchest supporter in the European Union, blocking several efforts to issue statements critical of Israeli policies.

For instance, in 2020, Hungary was one of the only countries that did not publicly speak out against Israel’s then-plan to unilaterally annex swaths of the West Bank.

US President Donald Trump welcomes Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban to the White House in Washington, Monday, May 13, 2019. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Meanwhile, human rights organizations have said Hungry can no longer be considered a democracy after Hungary’s parliament approved a bill in March 2020 giving Orban’s government extraordinary powers during the coronavirus pandemic, and setting no end date for them.

Orban has also long held up George Soros as an enemy, calling him a “public enemy” for allegedly backing uncontrolled mass immigration. Jewish groups in the country condemned Orban’s anti-Soros campaign as anti-Semitic but despite widespread condemnations, it continued and in 2018 the Soros-founded Central European University was forced to relocate from Budapest.

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