Hungary is the only member of the European Union not invited to this week’s virtual “Summit for Democracy” hosted by President Joe Biden.
Biden has been openly critical of the nation, dubbing Hungary and Poland the “thugs of the world.”
Notably, Poland is one of the nations invited to the “Summit for Democracy.”
The government, led by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, regards its interests as being at odd with Biden’s policies.
“Hungary is not the West’s colony,” said Laszlo Magas, a Hungarian professor and anti-communist advocate. He told NPR that his country believes Western liberal bias is at the root of their political position.
“The whole world is being misled about us,” Magas said. “The mainstream media is full of fake news about us. The liberals want you to think Hungary doesn’t know what democracy is because we don’t share their beliefs.”
Magas equates the growing ideological difference between Western Europe and Eastern Europe as the same as the difference between blue states and red states in America.
Under Orbán, the Hungarian government has become known for its nationalism, its conservative policies and its anti-immigration stance.
In an interview with Tucker Carlson — who took his show to Hungary — the Prime Minister said, “It is not a human right’ to migrate to Hungary.”
Hungary has also suggested its exclusion from the summit is a punishment for its government’s positive relationship with President Donald Trump.
The Hungarian Embassy in Washington described the Biden administration’s actions as “disrespectful.”
“Hungarian-American relations were at their peak during the Trump presidency, and it is clear from the list of the invited countries that the summit will be a domestic political event,” the embassy said via a statement to The Washington Post. “Therefore countries that were on friendly terms with the previous administration were not invited.”
Orbán, who fought against communism in the 1980s as a law student, has gained a reputation as a leader who fights for traditional values and protects his nation’s unique cultural heritage from destruction. He has been attacked as homophobic because of his government laws limiting the distribution of pro-LGBTQ material in schools and on television.
In a recent speech, he referred to the West as a place “they can give birth as a man.”
In case you missed PM Orbán's speech at yesterday's Fidesz party congress – here are the highlights. pic.twitter.com/IyExTqugwq
— Zoltan Kovacs (@zoltanspox) November 15, 2021
Gergely Gulyás, the Minister of the Prime Minister’s Office, dismissed the exclusion, noting that without the Easter European nation, there can be no common EU position as per the unanimity rule in the EU treaties on foreign affairs issues.
“Hungary does not have the same serious democratic problems as the United States,” Gulyás said in a public statement. “If we can help and America thinks it needs our advice, we are available.”
“In Hungary, we are not at a point where nearly a third of the electorate thinks that the democratic election has been rigged, and I hope we won’t be, regardless of who wins the election,” he added.
In an article for his foundation, former retired politician Dr. Ron Paul wrote that Biden’s Summit is really about “undermining democracy worldwide with US interventionist foreign policy.”
Paul’s statement went on to say:
“Hungary … has undeniably held fully democratic elections since the end of communism 30 years ago. There is no question that Hungary is a democratic country, but it is not invited to Biden’s ‘Summit for Democracy.’
“Why? Because the Biden Administration does not like Hungary’s democracy. It does not like the fact that the Hungarian people have voted for a conservative government that occasionally pursues foreign and domestic policies at odds with the dictates of Foggy Bottom and Langley.
“The Biden Administration does not like that Hungary resisted the mass invasion of refugees from countries and cultures absolutely alien to Hungary’s history. Biden does not like the fact that Hungarians have voted time and time again for a conservative government that openly professes Christian values.”
More than 100 countries have been invited to the summit, which will be held online from Dec. 9-10. The White House has repeatedly been asked to explain its decisions regarding the invitees.
“The Philippines received an invite while Singapore did not. Pakistan, but not Bangladesh, was invited. And while the White House called upon the governments of Colombia, India, and Brazil to join, it did not do so with Bolivia, El Salvador, and others,” per The Washington Examiner. “The ultimate criteria for making the summit’s list remains largely a mystery, however. Some countries were added after preliminary lists showed them omitted, prompting spirited lobbying campaigns.”
When pressed for an explanation at a Dec. 6 press briefing, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that “inclusion or an invitation is not a stamp of approval on their approach to democracy nor is exclusion a stamp of the opposite of that of disapproval.”