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The use of a token Jew

Guest post by Karl Pfeifer

The current rightwing Fidesz government has succeeded in tarnishing the once-good reputation of Hungary. According to their propaganda, this is purely the fault of the liberal and leftwing media. The April 4 Economist published “Tamas’s tweets”, a short commentary on the language used by Fidesz MEP Tamás Deutsch, who happens to be Jewish: “There are pieces of shit. There are vile people. There are malevolent madmen. There are revolting dribbles of semen. There are disgusting rotters. And there is [former Socialist prime minister Ferenc] Gyurcsány.” He has also called Gyurcsány “szarházi,” or turd, on occasion.

“Die Presse”, the conservative Vienna daily, published an article on January 25 about the antisemitic journalist and Fidesz founding member Zsolt Bayer: “Honors for a Fecal Anti-Semite”. It was the very day the European Jewish Congress reported: “Prime Minister Orbán agreed with the EJC’s comparison of the New Anti-Semitism, in the form of an attack on Israel and classic anti-Semitism and said both are equally unacceptable.”

But according to the conservative Hungarian blog “mandiner” Tamás Deutsch stated in front of cameras:

“I want to send an unequivocal message to the West European and American journalists observing the tireless implementations of human rights in Hungary: Yes, I have the guts to have my photograph taken together with my friend Zsolt Bayer. I’m not ashamed, never was.”

He did this March 30, on the 23rd anniversary of the founding of Fidesz, in the presence of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, whose friendship with Zsolt Bayer has proved beyond any doubt that Orbán considers classic Jew-baiting acceptable, and that antisemitism is part and parcel of Fidesz politics– while Tamás Deutsch acts as “token Jew” and protects him and his party against insinuations of antisemitism.

Fidesz, a sister party of the German CDU/CSU, is a member of the European People’s Party, which incorporates 38 like-minded national parties.

From far left: Viktor Orbán, Zsolt Bayer and Tamás Deutsch.