|Author: Zoltán GÁL J.||Original title: Erőnek ereje|
|Publication: vasarnapihirek.hu , Photo:MTI-Balázs MOHAI||Date: Published in the 12/09/2015 issue|
By Brute Force
Are they doing this on purpose, or is this really the best they can do? As if the refugee crisis was holding a magnifying glass above the country, we might have never seen Hungary like this before with such strong contours — in such detail. Beyond the magnifying glass now appears a world that last showed itself in this country in 1944, but there is also a yearning for an inclusive, tolerant, European country. And the distance between the two is not a crack, but an abyss.
This magnifying glass helps explain why this was such an anxious and bad tempered place even before the arrival of the refugees. Why it is that hopelessness has become a permanent feature of our healthcare, chaos has erupted in education and the civil service is incapable of any kind of reform. All because of arrogant politics of strength that simplifies everything, cannot stand complicated issues that are not black and white and cannot be solved by a single sentence “truth.”
Healthcare, education or the civil service are similar to immigration in this regard. If I force myself into the role of a cold observer, which is not easy, and only comment on the execution without mentioning how nasty and cynical the intentions were, the appropriate answer to the question asked in the first sentence seems to be that the impotence of the immigration authorities is not part of some diabolical master plan, but the — so far – gravest and most spectacular failure of a centralized government that rates loyalty above expertise.
Some people consider Viktor Orbán a strong politician because if he decides to erect a sky high iron tower on the top of the Hungarian heart chakra at Dobogókő, a tower will definitely be erected sooner or later. No doubt, previous governments were different: even if the will of the prime minister prevailed over all other interests, the tower probably wasn’t built very high in the end and there was a good chance it was made of aluminium.
The reason Orbán is different is that he doesn’t care about legal barriers, tenders aren’t even mentioned, there is no accounting for public funds, and costs don’t matter when there is always a friendly oligarch available with the right tools for the job. “I ordered it and it has been done, no comment.” This is what a strong politician is like in Hungary.
Now this strong politician ordered a fence on the Serbian/Hungarian border. He looked around and there was Csabe Hende Defence Secretary sticking out from his behind, so he gave him the task. Even I know that the few remaining experts of the defence ministry and the military staff produced masses of documents explaining why this was a bad idea. Now that they were proved right, Hende has been booted out of the government to be followed by the superhero Simicskó, the right man to sort this mess out – he voted against the EU, after all.
When the fence doesn’t solve all problems, the strong man finds another miracle cure, send the refugees back to Serbia from the transit zones located on the territory of Hungary.
He forgets to take into account the small detail that, based on current numbers, about 20,000 people are to be crammed daily into these transit zones and if Serbia, following the Hungarian example, suspended its obligation to receive them, a humanitarian catastrophe would be inevitable.
According to the latest news the government has realized that the strong politician’s second miracle weapon has misfired, too, but no worries, there is always a new trick: criminalizing illegal border crossing.
I know facts would only restrict the fantasy of strong men, but still, it might be worth taking a look at the numbers.
There are 13,736 available prison spaces in Hungary, but these are already occupied by 17,500 inmates and the expected number of refugees this year is 160,000.
Rumour has it there isn’t anyone left in Orbán’s inner circle to make him understand that the refugee crisis has no solution, or rather has no Hungarian solution. More precisely, there is no one magical solution.
The Hungarian government cannot stop the tide of refugees with a fence nor with the army mobilized after 50 years of inaction or some new laws, and it couldn’t take them in even if they wanted to stay.
But there are things we are strong enough to do: to treat them with kindness and be grateful for any EU offers to lighten Hungary’s burden. These offers are all based on giving asylum to some – so this is where we should be concentrating our strength.
We keep hearing that ‘Hungarian reforms are working’ and ‘Hungary is doing better’, so providing for a small crowd that would fit into a stadium shouldn’t be an issue, should it? If the Christian roots of the country are now enshrined in the Constitution, we don’t seriously think a few thousand refugees with a different religion will destroy them, do we? We’re very close to the point where it won’t matter anymore whether they are doing it on purpose or are simply incompetent, and the only remaining question will be whose blood will be spilt first in the hell of Röszke, that of a Hungarian policeman or a Syrian refugee. Even brute force won’t make that all right.