Orbán Ends the Budapest–Warsaw Axis

Central Europe has been captured by malpractice disseminated from Budapest and sponsored by Moscow.

2 April 2022

Wojciech Przybylski

Editor-in-Chief

Regardless of the electoral result this weekend in Hungary, Poland will as of now stand apart remaking the Central European dynamics. The divergence over Russia’s war on Ukraine is only part of the answer. 

War in Ukraine has cracked the foundations of Polish-Hungarian political friendship. Either the openly pro-Russian agenda of Orbán wins alienating Poles, or the opposition will win leaving Poland alone in the spat over the rule of law with the EU. 

The region’s security and prosperity will remain of critical importance to the EU and NATO but in years it will have to politically reshuffle in order to reclaim political agency in Europe.

Opinion polls research indicates a close race with more chances for the incumbent government of Viktor Orbán. Although a constitutional majority is most likely outside his reach, the electoral tactics involving gerrymandering, media capture, focus on polarisation through smear campaigning and other unfair practices will help the government to push it behind the line. 

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Wojciech Przybylski

Editor-in-Chief

Political analyst heading Visegrad Insight's policy foresight on European affairs. His expertise includes foreign policy and political culture. Editor-in-Chief of Visegrad Insight and President of the Res Publica Foundation. Europe's Future Fellow at IWM - Institute of Human Sciences in Vienna and Erste Foundation. Wojciech also co-authored a book 'Understanding Central Europe’, Routledge 2017. He has been published in Foreign Policy, Politico Europe, Journal of Democracy, EUObserver, Project Syndicate, VoxEurop, Hospodarske noviny, Internazionale, Zeit, Dziennik Gazeta Prawna, Onet, Gazeta Wyborcza and regularly appears in BBC, Al Jazeera Europe, Euronews, TRT World, TVN24, TOK FM, Swedish Radio and others.

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