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Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Thu Mar 30, 2017 7:07 pm

It beats me why Merkel is still so admired, Lily. Her attempts to expand the EU ever-eastwards played a large role, helped on by Washington, in the destruction of Ukraine. She's behaved like a tyrant to Greece, and wrapped the whole thing up by wrecking the EU itself.

I suspect that, if she hadn't invited hordes of military age young men into Europe, Brits would have carried on grumbling and groaning about the EU, but wouldn't actually have voted Leave. Instead, many people were utterly horrified by those endless columns of young men marching into European nations - all on Merkel's say-so.

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Fri Mar 31, 2017 10:55 am

Hungarian leader lashes out at George Soros-founded school

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — The future of a Budapest-based university founded by billionaire philanthropist George Soros depends on an agreement between the Hungarian and U.S. governments, Hungary's prime minister said Friday.

Viktor Orban, who considers the Hungarian-born Soros an ideological rival, said that Central European University, founded in 1991, is "cheating" with its unfair advantage over Hungarian universities because its diplomas are accepted in both Hungary and the U.S.

"This is not fair to Hungarian universities," Orban said on state radio. "There is competition among universities and it is inexplicable why we should put our own universities at a disadvantage ... while securing an unfair advantage for the foreign university."

CEU rector Michael Ignatieff has vowed to keep the university open despite a draft bill amending the law on higher education presented to parliament on Tuesday, which sets some new conditions on foreign universities operating in Hungary and is seen as directly targeting CEU.

Among the 28 foreign universities in Hungary, only CEU would fail to meet a requirement to also have a campus in its home country. "It makes no difference if someone is a billionaire in Hungary ... this university also has to respect the laws," Orban said. "Hungary is a country which always supports learning but does not tolerate cheating."

CEU rejected the prime minister's allegations. "Contrary to the prime minister's statement, there is no current Hungarian law that requires universities to have operations in their home countries in order to award degrees in Hungary," CEU said in a statement. "We have been lawful partners in Hungarian higher education for 25 years and any statement to the contrary is false."

Asked whether CEU would be in Hungary in six months or a year, Orban replied that "it depends on negotiations and an agreement between the American and Hungarian governments." Ignatieff, who is traveling Sunday to the U.S. to make CEU's case to lawmakers and the media, has said that any such agreement would have to be with the state of New York, where CEU is also accredited.

CEU officials "remain concerned that the government does not yet fully realize the implications of the proposed legislation," Ignatieff said Thursday in a message to CEU alumni and after meeting with Education Secretary Laszlo Palkovics. "It remains unclear why the government feels this legislation is necessary given their acknowledgement of CEU's contributions to Hungarian academic life."

Some Hungarian academics and university organizations have also expressed their support for CEU and their desire for the institution to remain in Hungary. "CEU is a very significant scholarly center," said Laszlo Lovasz, president of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. "It is good that it operates in Budapest."

The U.S. embassy in Budapest said it was "very concerned" about the planned legislation, saying CEU "enjoys strong bipartisan support in the U.S. government." The government's efforts to stifle CEU come amid Orban's criticism of some of the non-governmental organizations supported by Soros' Open Society Foundations.

The stridently anti-immigration prime minister, an early supporter of U.S. President Donald Trump and whose "illiberal state" ideal is modeled on Russia and Turkey, has called groups like corruption watchdog Transparency International and human rights advocate the Hungarian Helsinki Committee "foreign agents" working against Hungarian interests, for example because they offer legal representation to asylum-seekers.
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:11 pm

Good to see Soros coming under pressure publicly. He managed to hide in the shadows, while wreaking havoc, for far too long.

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:37 pm

bb1 wrote:Good to see Soros coming under pressure publicly. He managed to hide in the shadows, while wreaking havoc, for far too long.
I find it a bit ironic that, in 1989, Orbán received a scholarship from the Soros Foundation to study political science at Pembroke College, Oxford. LL
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:50 pm

IMO, Soros wasn't really showing his true colours then, LL. Remember, it was only when he trashed the UK economy, and hundreds of thousands of people's pensions and mortgages, that he came out of the shadows:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/2773265/Billionaire-who-broke-the-Bank-of-England.html

Even then, he managed to stay pretty much in the financial sections of newspapers. The revelations of his constant sh*t-stirring in the governance of sovereign nations are fairly recent.


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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Sat Apr 01, 2017 3:14 pm

Orbán: “Soros university cheating”

The future of the “Soros university” depends on US-Hungarian intergovernmental talks, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in an interview to public radio. A recent investigation by the Education Office revealed that the operation of several foreign universities, including Hungarian-born US financier “George Soros’s university”, fell foul of regulations, Orbán claimed, referring to the Central European University (CEU). “Even if someone is a billionaire, they cannot be above the law in Hungary … cheating is cheating, no matter who does it,” Orbán added.

The CEU “enjoys an unfair advantage” over Hungarian universities because it can award both a Hungarian degree and an American one despite “admitting that it does not operate abroad”, which is against Hungarian regulations, he insisted. In response to the question about whether the CEU would be able to operate in Hungary in the future, Orbán said this would depend on US-Hungarian talks and an agreement. No discussions have taken place with the US government on the issue, he added. In line with the bill, an intergovernmental agreement would be necessary for any foreign university to operate in Hungary, he said.
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Sun Apr 02, 2017 8:28 pm

Large rally in Hungary for imperiled Soros-founded school

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Thousands of people marched in Hungary's capital on Sunday to protest planned legal changes that are seen as targeting a Budapest university founded by billionaire Hungarian-American philanthropist George Soros.

Participants walk during the rally, organized by the Freedom for Education movement, called CEU Now, Who's Next – Protest For The Free Education, in downtown Budapest, Hungary, Sunday, April 2, 2017

Many Hungarian and international scholars and institutions have expressed support for Central European University. The school, founded by Soros in 1991, enrolls over 1,400 students from 108 countries.

Prime Minister Viktor Orban considers Soros an ideological foe whose "open society" ideal contrasts with his own efforts to turn Hungary into an "illiberal state." Sunday's march started at Budapest's Corvinus University.

Corvinus professor Daniel Deak says the proposed changes to Hungary's higher education law could force CEU to close and was "a shot coming from the Hungarian government against all Hungarian universities."
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Sun Apr 02, 2017 9:13 pm

Do they think Soros parts with all that money for the good of his health? Because he is a philanthropist with a heart of gold?

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:08 pm

Hungary approves stricter terms for Soros-founded university.

The bill modifies rules regulating the 28 foreign universities in Hungary. Central European University said parts of the bill directly target it, and could force it to close. Orban, a former Soros scholarship recipient, has been increasingly critical of the Hungarian-born philanthropist, accusing him of wanting to influence Hungarian politics.

He said last week that CEU was "cheating" because it did not have a campus in its country of origin and because it issued diplomas recognized both in Hungary and the United States, giving it an undue advantage over local institutions. The CEU is accredited in New York state but does not have a U.S. campus.

The U.S. State Department as well as hundreds of academics and universities have expressed support for CEU, founded in 1991. It currently enrolls 1,400 students from 108 countries. Zoltan Balog, whose ministry oversees education, appeared to link CEU to the non-governmental organizations supported by Soros in Hungary. Speaking at the start of the debate in parliament, he described them as "faux-civic, agent organizations" seeking to hinder the democratically-elected Hungarian government.

"We are committed to preventing this activity with every legal means," Balog said. Leaders at CEU have vowed to keep the university open. "If the bill passes, it would mark the first time that a member of the European Union dared to legislate an attack on the academic freedom of a university," CEU rector Michael Ignatieff said in an opinion article in The New York Times on Sunday. "It would also mark the first time that an American ally, a member of NATO, openly attacked an American institution on its soil."

Ignatieff added that the bill aimed to "send a chill through Hungarian higher education and eliminate one of the few remaining institutions in Hungary that can stand up to the government." The draft bill requires the governments of the U.S. and Hungary to agree on new terms for the university's operations within the next few months. If a deal doesn't materialize, CEU would be banned from enrolling new students after Jan. 1, 2018 and would have to conclude its educational activities by 2021.

Balog said Hungary's government was ready to negotiate with the U.S. government on an agreement about the university.
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:11 pm

Watchdog report: 'Breakdown of democracy' in Poland, Hungary

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — U.S.-based pro-democracy group Freedom House said Tuesday that a "spectacular breakdown of democracy" has been taking place in Poland and Hungary, two countries that stood as models of democratic change after the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe.

The watchdog organization's report said that Hungary now has the lowest democracy score in the Central European region and that Poland's score is falling. It cited an attack by populist leaders in both countries on constitutional courts and the system of checks and balances, as well as the transformation of public media into "propaganda arms."

"The spectacular breakdown of democracy in these countries should serve as a warning about the fragility of the institutions that are necessary for liberal democracy, especially in settings where political norms have shallow roots and where populists are able to tap into broad social disaffection," the report said.

The downward spiral, according the report, began with the election in 2010 of Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban and his ruling Fidesz party, who re-wrote the constitution, took over the courts, eroded critical media, attacked civic society and stoked anti-migrant feelings.

Poland's ruling Law and Justice party, under the leadership of Jaroslaw Kaczynski, has taken similar steps since assuming power in 2015, eroding the independence of the Constitutional Tribunal and turning public media into a tool of propaganda for the party.

"Despite their apparent maturation, the media, the judiciary, and institutions of democratic representation in Poland and Hungary have turned out to be quite vulnerable," the report said. Freedom House made the assessment in its yearly "Nations in Transit" report, which assesses the state of democracy in 29 formerly communist countries from Central Europe and the Balkans to Central Asia.

It found backsliding on democracy across much of this region but also noted Ukraine, Romania, and Kosovo had made some "modest gains" thanks to reforms. The group also argued that the state of democracy in the region was influenced by Britain's vote to leave the European Union and the election of President Donald Trump in the United States, saying both developments "have emboldened anti-democratic populists."

"A critical mass of leaders in the region openly reject the idea of liberal democracy," said Nate Schenkkan, project director of Nations in Transit. "Populism increasingly is combining with crude ethnic nationalism in a way that threatens peace in Europe."

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:42 pm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_House

Freedom House is a U.S.-based[4] 501(c)(3) U.S. Government funded non-governmental organization (NGO) that conducts research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom, and human rights.[5] Freedom House was founded in October 1941. Wendell Willkie and Eleanor Roosevelt served as its first honorary chairpersons. It describes itself as a "clear voice for democracy and freedom around the world". The organization was 66–85% funded by grants from the US government from 2006–15.[6][7][8]

Hopefully, Trump will stop US-funded NGOs from sh*t-stirring in other countries - they are, IMO, a damned nuisance, and only ever cause trouble.

They've also brought genuine US charities into disrepute, because so many NGOs are nothing more than CIA fronts.

The U.S. representative stated that alleged links between Freedom House and the CIA were "simply not true."

Aye, right.

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Wed Apr 05, 2017 9:07 am

Hungarian Free Press: Attack against CEU may endanger Hungarian universities in Romania.

Romania’s former prime minister, Victor Ponta, expressed his enthusiasm for planned legislation in Hungary, which endangers the future of Central European University in Budapest. Mr. Ponta, a Member of the Romanian Chamber of Deputies, indicated that he intends to propose a similar law, in order to restrict the activities of foreign universities on Romanian soil.

This may serve as a wake-up call for Hungarians who are supportive of the Orbán government and its hate campaign against George Soros, as two Transylvanian universities that would find their operations in jeopardy are both funded by Hungary. These include Sapientia Hungarian University of Transylvania based in three Transylvanian cities and the Partium Christian University, located in Nagyvárad (Oradea).
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Apr 06, 2017 3:59 pm

EU rift with Hungary deepens over Orban actions

BRUSSELS (AP) — The rift between the European Union and member state Hungary is widening, with the EU Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker criticizing two recent issues that are seen as pushing Budapest away from EU values.

Juncker said Thursday he objects to an education bill that critics say targets a university founded by billionaire American philanthropist George Soros. It was pushed by lawmakers from Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban's Fidesz party.

On top of that, he criticized the Hungarian government's new National Consultation that has the motto "Let's Stop Brussels." Juncker said that "after reading this biased questionnaire, I would like to better understand Mr. Orban's intentions," adding the criticism of EU headquarters ran counter to Orban's reinforced support for the EU at a summit in Rome two weeks ago.
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Thu Apr 06, 2017 5:00 pm

I find it terrifying that Juncker and co just cannot see why they're destroying the EU with their edicts, LL. If you're defending Soros, of all people - you're the Bad Guys.

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  lily on Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:04 pm

I do believe that Juncker is a bad guy.  bottomsup
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:37 pm

European Parliament election, 2014

The European Council officially proposed Juncker to Parliament as candidate for the Presidency on 27 June, together with a strategic agenda setting out policy priorities for the upcoming Commission mandate period.[49]

For the first time the nomination was not by consensus, but the European Council voted 26-2 to propose Juncker for the position. Voting against were British PM David Cameron (Conservative Party / ECR) and Hungarian PM Viktor Orbán (Fidesz / EPP), both of whom had frequently opposed Juncker during the election process.

Prior to the vote, various media had reported the heads of government of Sweden, Netherlands and Germany were also having similar concerns regarding either the candidate himself, or the way the nomination process was conducted. This was however never confirmed by the politicians in question.
The above re Cameron and Orban explains why Juncker launches his non-stop vitriol against the UK and Hungary. LL
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:46 pm

Ah! Good find, LL! thumbsup

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:52 pm

bb1 wrote:Ah! Good find, LL! thumbsup
Nicked from the Wikipedia section on Juncker! He is a typical small country would-be world leader. I do not belittle Luxembourg, a very small but pretty country, by the way. LL
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Thu Apr 06, 2017 8:05 pm

I've said before, Juncker and other EU leaders remind me of the Bourbons. Not only don't they learn from their mistakes, they can't even admit that they have made mistakes. They're so arrogant, they seem blind to the growing disaster they're causing.

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Sat Apr 08, 2017 4:18 pm

Hungary’s Assault on Freedom.    
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/07/opinion/hungarys-assault-on-freedom.html

After muzzling a free press and shutting down civil society groups, the government of Prime Minister Viktor Orban of Hungary has trained its repressive sights on academic freedom. On Tuesday, the Parliament approved legislation designed to shut down Central European University, a private Hungarian-American graduate institution that has programs ranked among the top 50 in the world. The measure would require the university to set up a campus in the United States, making it impossible for Central European University to operate. The legislation now goes to President Janos Ader for his signature.

This move is yet another rebuke to the European Union, and the rights it guarantees all citizens, from the increasingly autocratic Mr. Orban. It is also an ugly attack against the liberal Hungarian-American billionaire George Soros.  Mr. Soros, who has spent some $12 billion through his Open Society Foundations to promote a liberal political and social agenda throughout the world, has become a lightning rod for resentment by Central and Eastern European populists intent on wresting their countries away from democracy.

Central European University was founded in 1991 with a generous grant from Mr. Soros. In his weekly interview on Hungarian state radio last Friday, Mr. Orban preposterously called the respected university a “fraud,” and he added a clear jibe at Mr. Soros, saying, “In Hungary, one cannot be above the law — even if you’re a billionaire.” Mr. Orban may believe making a boogeyman out of Mr. Soros, a Holocaust survivor, will help his party win next year’s parliamentary elections by fanning loathsome anti-Semitic and xenophobic fears, but killing off one of Hungary’s most important educational institutions is a spectacularly self-defeating move. Thousands of Hungarians have turned out to protest the legislation.

In a statement after Tuesday’s vote, David Kostelancik of the American Embassy in Budapest called the university “an important component of the U.S.-Hungarian relationship for 26 years” and vowed that the “United States will continue to advocate for its independence and unhindered operation in Hungary.” Michael Ignatieff, rector and president of Central European University, vowed the university will fight on. “We’ve done nothing wrong,” he said.

It now falls to the European Union, which has responded to Mr. Orban’s attacks on fundamental freedoms with weak verbal protests while continuing to send billions of euros in aid, to salvage what is left of its credibility on citizens’ rights, and take strong action to uphold the union’s core values against attack by a member state. For the sake of democracy and freedom of inquiry in Hungary, Mr. Ader should not sign this dangerously self-destructive legislation into law.
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Sat Apr 08, 2017 4:30 pm

Mr. Orban may believe making a boogeyman out of Mr. Soros, a Holocaust survivor

Someone needs to tell them the scumbag wasn't a 'survivor', he was a collaborator that made money out of the Holocaust.

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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  lily on Sat Apr 08, 2017 6:12 pm

That is the New York Times.  So ultra liberal that they can only turn right......Pcorneater
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Sun Apr 09, 2017 8:28 pm

Hungary: Showdown of 'illiberal state' vs. 'open society'.

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Hungary's effort to close Central European University, founded by billionaire philanthropist George Soros in 1991, is another step in Prime Minister Viktor Orban's plan to transform his country into an "illiberal state," a narrower view of democracy which contrasts with the "open society" ideals promoted globally by Soros.

A law rushed through parliament on Tuesday sets new conditions for the 28 foreign universities operating in Hungary. Some of the requirements — such as carrying out teaching activities in their home countries — are seen specifically targeting CEU, which does not have an American campus. CEU is accredited in New York state and Hungary and its students can obtain diplomas accepted both locally and the United States. Orban says CEU is "cheating" by issuing two diplomas, giving it an unfair advantage over other local universities.

Hungary is demanding a binding, bilateral agreement with the U.S. government on CEU and another one with New York state. Thousands attended two rallies against the law targeting CEU in the past days, while a third protest on Sunday attracted some 70,000 people, the largest anti-government march in years.  More at link.

https://www.mail.com/int/news/us/5102760-hungary-showdown-illiberal-state-vs-open-society.html#.1258-stage-hero1-4
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  Lamplighter on Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:24 am

Hungary: Thousands rally in support of Soros-founded school.

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Some 70,000 people rallied in Budapest Sunday in support of a local university founded by American billionaire George Soros that is seen as a target for Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban's illiberal policies.

The Hungarian-born Soros founded Central European University in 1991. Amendments to Hungary's higher education law approved this week could force it to close or move. The law, rushed through Parliament in less than a week, would require CEU to change its name and open a campus in the United States. It also calls for binding agreements about the university between Hungary and the United States.

CEU is accredited in New York state and in Hungary and students can earn degrees valid in both countries. The university currently enrolls over 1,400 students from 108 countries. The U.S. State Department has expressed its concerns about the legislation and CEU's ability to continue operating in Hungary. Deputy Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Hoyt Yee will be in Budapest on Monday to meet with government officials, in part to discuss CEU. Yee is also expected to meet with authorities from the university.

Protesters filling Kossuth Square outside Parliament said they want President Janos Ader to veto the legislation. It was the largest anti-government protest in years. Ader, from Orban's governing Fidesz party, was re-elected by lawmakers for a five-year term in March.

https://www.mail.com/int/news/europe/5103274-hungary-thousands-rally-support-soros-founded-scho.html#.1258-stage-hero1-11
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Re: Hungary is new hot spot on migrant route into EU - Part 2

Post  bb1 on Mon Apr 10, 2017 5:08 pm

http://www.breitbart.com/london/2017/04/10/un-urges-eu-stop-sending-migrants-hungary/

UN Urges EU to Stop Sending Migrants to Hungary

Good news for Hungary.

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