Orbán: “Christianity has created the free man, the family and the nation”

(This article is a translation of an original interview by Branimir Stanić and Ivan Tašev)

Earlier this month Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán—long maligned by the Brussels machine as an authoritarian reactionary inside the ever-so-progressive European Union—gave an interview to the Croatian Catholic weekly Glas Koncila (The Voice of the Council, 20 June 2021). Orbán made several important points in the course of this interview: on the civilizational challenges currently facing Europe (including immigration), on national sovereignty challenged by Brussels, and on the nature of politics in the 21st century. No politician in such a position of authority in any EU member country has had the vision and the courage to talk and act like the Hungarian prime minister. [Excerpts translated from Croatian by S. Trifkovic]

Viktor Orbán: A cultural, nay, civilizational struggle is taking place right now. The struggle for the soul of Europe and for the future of Europe is here, it is happening. Theological debates are seldom held in the trenches, and we are all under attack. That is why prayers are needed for the complete unity of all Christians, including the Orthodox, because without cooperation we cannot sustain Christianity in Europe.…

If someone has a majority, but does not strive for the truth, what does he need it for? It is mere profanation. If, on the other hand, he advocates the truth, but cannot move the majority, how will he act in the interest of that truth? This is the key challenge of Christian politics in democratic societies. To put it simply, we no longer have kings anointed by God, so we must exist in a democracy, connecting the majority and the truth. It is not easy, but it is possible. Christian-Democratic politics has its mandate in relation to Christian culture. Christianity, first of all, created the free man. Therefore, we must – first and foremost – protect human dignity. Then, Christianity created the Christian family. We must protect the concept of the Christian family. Next, Christianity has created nations in this part of the world. If we Hungarians had not followed Christianity for a thousand years, we would have disappeared; so we must also protect the nation. But we also have to protect religious communities and the Church. To summarize, our task is not to protect theological principles, that is the mission of the Church; but our mission is to protect the great Christian achievements of our civilization.…

Political power creates joint action through political action, through elections, the constitution, or otherwise. Yet we must not forget God’s authority either. Joint action cannot be achieved only by political means, it should also be established spiritually. It is the task of the Church, and of the servants of the Church, to establish joint action by leadership… and we [politicians] do that by political means. When these two sides are connected, great results are achieved. For that reason, we will never accept the separation of Church and State as it is interpreted in the West.…

Our fundamental position on the issue of immigration is that it is an ontologically bad thing. It is bad if one cannot stay and live in his country, find his personal happiness and vocation there, and if he has to leave it, especially under duress. Occasionally it happens that a person has to leave his homeland because his life is in danger, or someone wants to enslave him, or put him in jail, or he would starve to death. These are possibly valid reasons. However, even if someone were to leave their homeland, the goal should be to return later on. Therefore, if we want to help someone who is forced to leave his homeland, we should not encourage him to stay outside it. We should help him return to his homeland as soon as possible. I personally advocatethis position, and I suggest it to the European Union as well: I propose European military and economic action to stabilize dangerous parts of the world and create normal living conditions for people in these areas. I think this position can be defended in a Christian sense as well.…

No one can enter the territory of your country if you do not allow him to do so. If he does, he must be pushed out; so we use the fence. We are convinced that migration does not happen spontaneously, but in an organized manner. This is seen as a conspiracy theory in the West, but it is all organized … The consequence is the influx of huge Muslim masses to the continent of Europe. I believe that all those who do not defend themselves now will not recognize their country in 20 years. Change will happen under external influence, which is simply imposed on them. I think Nikola Zrinski would know what to do in such a situation. [Zrinski was a 16th century Croatian nobleman who died heroically in battle against the invading Muslim Turks]…

Thought-factories in the Western world continue to produce desires for people to go elsewhere, because living conditions are better elsewhere and they have no obligations to their own country. I think the next decade will be marked by epidemics and migrations. All of this has a severe, perhaps fatal, effect on Europe’s Christian Democracy.…

If we were in the Middle Ages and I needed a slogan for my banner to sum up my work and my thought. I’d say “Only dead fish swim with the current.” Whoever swims with the multicultural fad of our time, loses everything that matters in life. True, those who go against the current cause themselves a lot of problems. … But if we don’t pay that price and if we don’t stand up for our interests, we may live more comfortably but we will end up losing a lot more.…

After the Communist era we made many mistakes. By the time we noticed what was actually going on, we had lost control over key national resources – the energy system, the banking sector, the media – all of which passed into the hands of foreigners, and not on the basis of some rational plan, it was simply taken away from us. I’ve been working for 10 years to get back what we should not have wasted.…

The Westerners have chosen to live in a post-national and post-Christian world, and we respect that. But they want even more. They want us to live that way too. For this reason, if any spirituality emerges in regional cooperation that includes the protection of national Christian cultures, ideological attacks immediately follow – a left-liberal attack that stems from Brussels but which is linked to American liberal and economic powers. They don’t want us to be free, they want us to be free only in the way they would like us to be.…

We Central Europeans are in favor of preserving our nation-states because we believe that democracy can only be achieved within national frameworks. Western Europe, on the other hand, wants an empire based in Brussels. This is our key difference with Europe.

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