Cover Osteuropa 10/2006

In Osteuropa 10/2006

Democracy or the Street?
On the Stability of the Hungarian Political System

Thomas von Ahn

Deutsche Fassung


In mid-September 2006, Hungary was shaken by a partly violent wave of demonstrations. The cause was a speech by Hungarian Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány in which he admitted that, before the election, he knowingly played down the national debt. The protests against Gyurcsány and the austerity policy he introduced in summer 2006 mark the preliminary culmination of a conflict between political camps which has been growing in intensity for years. The right-wing conservative camp, which has been in the opposition since 2002, increasingly seems to be calling the political system into question. The rift between the camps is exacerbated by disputes over the past which conceal fundamental differences in national politics.

(Osteuropa 10/2006, pp. 89–104)