By Mariann Őry
The habit of portraying German interests as common European interests will ultimately lead to a centralization of power in favor of Berlin.
“The European Union’s foreign policy has become ridiculous. If our eight joint declarations have been brushed aside so far – and in the case of China it has – the ninth will also become a mockery. We look like poor paper tigers, and after our ineffective statements the world laughs at us, ”Prime Minister Viktor Orbán recently confronted EU decision-makers with this unpleasant truth.
It really cannot be said that the Hungarian position on this issue has not been clear for a long time. In his earlier, eighth samizdat , which Orbán addressed to Armin Laschet, the candidate for chancellor of the Christian Democratic Union of Germany, he responded to a similar topic. That is why Hungary became the target of criticism in Berlin because it was the only one that did not support the EU declaration on Israel.
Before we examine why the Union’s obsession with making statements is problematic, let us consider an interesting detail. The first element of this detail has to do with Laschet, but more importantly, the Social Democratic Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, who suggested that unanimity should be abolished in decisions on the European Union’s foreign policy. Does it hurt Germany not to be able to govern the Union alone because it is hindered by annoying member state sovereignty?
Unpleasant associations with the European past come to mind.
Berlin always packs the assertion of its own will in the so-called common interest, which is usually equated with the German interest. For example, when Chancellor Angela Merkel generously invited the Syrians to Germany, and thus pretty much everyone who pretended to be Syrian, it suddenly became a common European interest to distribute these people.
To come back to the distribution of declarations, do not think that if Hungary vetoed a joint draft declaration, everyone else would be perfectly happy with the document. That’s not the case, they just don’t dare to get up. The Hungarian position, on the other hand, is that dangerous nonsense should not be facilitated or supported.
Die Europäische Union macht sich lächerlich, wenn sie den Großmächten mit unwirksamen Papieren drohen will, eine politische Polizeitruppe spielt und die strategischen Partner der Union in herablassender, belehrender Weise kritisiert. Dahinter steckt eine unendliche Arroganz, die sehr typisch für die liberale Elite der EU ist. Es ist nicht nur so, dass sie falsch liegen, denn solange sie diese wütenden Aussagen machen, geht die Welt weiter – in der Tat, die Welt geht an uns vorbei.
Europe will not be strong and competitive because it has made foreign policy statements – especially not if it once again mishandles a crisis. The EU countries that rely exclusively on Western vaccines and joint EU procurement are already a month and a half behind Hungary. The Hungarian government realized in good time that it was wrong to rely solely on Western vaccines and that Hungary also needs Eastern vaccines. The Hungarian government, on the other hand, did not make it a political issue, but said it was about making the vaccine work.
This is just as much a question of sovereignty as the veto right of the nation states in joint decisions and declarations. Hungary does not want to be a paper tiger, but a strong, sovereign country. The disease management indicators and those of the economy show that this is the right direction and that Hungary is on the right side of history.
This contract was first published by MAGYAR HÍRLAP , our partner in the EUROPEAN MEDIA COOPERATION.