RussiaNovember 10 2022, 15:57 pm

Hungarian Leadership Figure Congratulates Two National Conservative US Politicians on Mid-Term Victories

Balázs Orbán, the polit­i­cal direc­tor for Hun­gar­i­an Prime Min­is­ter Vik­tor Orbán (no rela­tion) has telling­ly cho­sen to con­grat­u­late two of the suc­cess­ful can­di­dates in the US mid-term elec­tions. On Novem­ber 9, Balázs Orbán tweet­ed his con­grat­u­la­tions to J.D. Vance, the Repub­li­can Sen­a­tor-elect from Ohio:

Many con­grat­u­la­tions to @JDVance1 for being elect­ed as Sen­a­tor of Ohio! I wish you every suc­cess in this new role!

The Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ed yes­ter­day that Vance had been iden­ti­fied as part of the Glob­al Nation­al Con­ser­v­a­tive Alliance (GNCA), a move­ment that gen­er­al­ly empha­sizes an iso­la­tion­ist US for­eign pol­i­cy. As not­ed in that post, Vance has adopt­ed a gen­er­al­ly iso­la­tion­ist posi­tion on Ukraine and backs an online video-shar­ing ser­vice that hosts the Russ­ian pro­pa­gan­da media out­let RT. GIOR also report­ed ear­li­er this week on the Chris­t­ian nation­al­ist wing of the Repub­li­can Par­ty and its role in sup­port­ing Russ­ian Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin while oppos­ing mil­i­tary aid to Ukraine. Vance has also been char­ac­ter­ized as a Chris­t­ian Nationalist.

The oth­er US politi­cian con­grat­u­lat­ed by Orban was Flori­da gov­er­nor Ron DeSan­tis. In that tweet, Orban dis­plays him­self in a pho­to stand­ing next to DeSan­tis. GIOR report­ed in Sep­tem­ber that DeSan­tis was one of the most promi­nent speak­ers at the third US-based Nation­al Con­ser­vatism Con­fer­ence, held in Mia­mi from Sep­tem­ber 11 — Sep­tem­ber 13.  Media reports at the time described DeSan­tis as “a nation­al con­ser­v­a­tive light­ning rod.”

Balázs Orbán is also the head of the Math­ias Corv­i­nus Col­legium (MCC), a Hun­gar­i­an edu­ca­tion facil­i­ty backed by the regime of Hun­gar­i­an Prime Min­is­ter Vik­tor Orbán. A GIOR report on the GNCA explained the role of the MCC in the Orbán gov­ern­men­t’s strug­gle to con­trol Hun­gar­i­an high­er edu­ca­tion and to cre­ate a plat­form for rightwing fig­ures. The report also detailed the poten­tial role of the Nation­al Con­ser­v­a­tives in Russ­ian influ­ence operations:

The MATHIAS CORVINUS COLLEGIUM, a Hun­gar­i­an edu­ca­tion­al facil­i­ty, is a key part of the ORBÁN government’s strug­gle to con­trol Hun­gar­i­an high­er edu­ca­tion and is the cen­ter of Nation­al Con­ser­v­a­tive activ­i­ty in the coun­try. This facil­i­ty, fund­ed by a mas­sive gift of stock from the ORBÁN gov­ern­ment, has spon­sored events and teach­ing posi­tions for promi­nent US right-wing fig­ures. Rus­sia has already begun to employ Nation­al Con­ser­v­a­tive themes in its influ­ence oper­a­tions which will like­ly find a more recep­tive West­ern audi­ence than in the past. Hun­gary is par­tic­u­lar­ly fer­tile ground for Russ­ian exploita­tion of Nation­al Con­ser­vatism giv­en the exist­ing close rela­tion­ship between Russ­ian and Hun­gar­i­an elites and an exten­sive pre-exist­ing Russ­ian influ­ence network.

Read the full report here

The GIOR report­ed last week that the MCC Brus­sels cen­ter direc­tor Frank Fure­di is a con­trib­u­tor to RT, the Russ­ian pro­pa­gan­da out­let. We also report­ed on the role played by the MCC in dis­sem­i­nat­ing Russ­ian-style anti-LGBTQ pro­pa­gan­da and its use of for­eign West­ern “experts” in that effort.


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