Hungary, Poland Counterpunch After Biden Attack

News: Campaign 2020World News
by Martina Moyski  •  •  October 20, 2020   

Former VP's remarks spark international row

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WASHINGTON ( - Two North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) members in good standing are pushing back against attacks by Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó

Representatives of Hungary and Poland are bristling at the former vice president's recent descriptions of their countries as "totalitarian regimes." The 77-year-old Biden made the remarks at ABC's Oct. 15 town hall event.

"You see what's happening in everything from Belarus to Poland to Hungary and the rise of totalitarian regimes in the world," Biden exclaimed in a reference to NATO. "This President embraces all the thugs of the world."

Péter Szijjártó, Hungary's minister of foreign affairs and trade, shot back in a video posted on his Facebook page, calling the remarks "completely false and undignified statements."

"We may still remember the kind of Central European policy the democrats pursued for eight years; we may still recall the continuous lecturing, accusations and attacks,” Szijjártó said, referring to harangues the two countries received from members of the Obama-Biden administration.

"We Hungarians have experienced this firsthand," Szijjártó said, referring to times when, according to About Hungary, "liberal members of the U.S. diplomatic corps in Budapest took part in opposition protests and published 'extraordinarily biased' statements with the aim of supporting leftist-liberal parties and attacking the Hungarian government."

Involvement with communist China by Joe Biden and his son earned them millions of dollars

The foreign minister further noted with irony that during his tenure as vice president, Biden was "particularly busy" with foreign policy.

"This was the time when his son happened to be a chief executive at a key Ukrainian energy company," he observed. "This was also the time when there were deals in the Ukrainian energy sector that were suspected of being corrupt."

Biden spent more of his time outside Washington in Ukraine than in rural America, the foreign minister added.

It would be great if Joe Biden could tell us why he put pressure on the Ukrainian government to fire its chief prosecutor.

Turning the tables on Biden, Szijjártó recommended that "Instead of attacking Hungary and Poland, it would be best if Joe Biden could answer some of those old questions that have been out there for a while, before attacking Central Europe."

"It would be great if Joe Biden could tell us why he put pressure on the Ukrainian government to fire its chief prosecutor, and how all of this related to the investigation into his son's Ukrainian energy deals grinding to a halt," Szijjártó said, referring to the oft-circulated video of Biden bragging about how he threatened to withhold aid to Ukraine unless a prosecutor was fired.

Poles from around the world weighed in and demanded retraction.

Remembering 'Totalitarianism'

"[W]e believe that you will reconsider your last remarks about Poland and correct them," the Smolensk Disaster Commemoration Committee — authors of the correspondence — demanded. The Committee, according to Breitbart, was formed in 2010 after a plane carrying the then-Polish president crashed en route to a memorial for Polish prisoners massacred by the Soviets in Katyn, killing all on board.

The authors noted that Poland is home to Europe's first and the world's second constitution," and "is now a young and strong democracy where everyone's freedom is ensured and protected while public debate is diverse, vibrant and unobstructed, even if heated at times."

"Poland as a nation has suffered too much for over two centuries until just recently — has lost too many of its people to German Nazi and Soviet industrialized murder and communist repression and desolation" to choose "totalitarianism" when it "freely votes" in national elections, they continued.

Biden's comments exposed his 'misapprehension of Central Europe' and were 'a harmful, false characterization of Poland.'

"We, like most Poles in America, are deeply disappointed by your commentary on Poland during the town hall event on Oct. 15," the committee said. Its letter added that Biden's comments exposed his "misapprehension of Central Europe" and called his jab "a harmful, false characterization of Poland."

The authors emphasized:

Compared to other European nations, Poland has been one of the strongest allies of the United States. Poland has set an example in fulfilling its obligations to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Polish soldiers fought gallantly in the Second World War against German and Russian totalitarianism, and in modern times participated in U.S.-led military efforts in the Middle East.

(L to R) Zoltán Kovács and David B. Cornstein

Like their Hungarian counterparts, the authors took a jab at the Obama-Biden administration.

"Thanks to the emphasis on the trans-Atlantic security policy and cooperation with the U.S., undertaken by the Polish government since 2016, relations between Poland and the U.S. are today the strongest and most productive in history," they emphasized.

Zoltán Kovács, Hungarian secretary of state for international communication, weighed in on Twitter on the skirmish. "Hungary under the Orbán government has been one of the U.S.'s staunchest allies in NATO. So, this is what we can expect from the Democrats if they win the election? More condescension and lecturing?" Kovacs asked.

David B. Cornstein, former U.S. ambassador to Budapest, revealed in a recent radio interview that President Trump phoned "Viktor," who was in the kitchen preparing a Hungarian dish. Among other details, the president expressed his intention to visit Hungary and the prime minister, should he win the election.

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