US ambassador to Hungary may run in trouble back home

Perhaps David Pressman and his staff would do well to not make Republicans angry by crossing the Hungarian government.

POLITICS APRIL 14. 2023 09:58

The Hungarian prime minister may not give chatty interviews to left-wing newspapers, but ever since Mr Pressman arrived in Hungary, these outlets have been consoling themselves with the American ambassador, Hungarian publicist Gergely Szilvay writes in his op-ed, recalling that Mr Pressman is so worried by Hungary-Russian economic ties that the US has introduced sanctions against Hungarian institutions and individuals. The left-wing press very much was looking forward to this, Mr Szilvay noted, and went on to say that

„the result was like when a much-anticipated movie goes astray, and the viewers leave behind both the popcorn and the movie itself, in the theatre. Although, of course, the friendly media outlets have not walked away from the embassy’ press briefing, the mood could change from euphoric to angry.”

He added that ‘Mr Pressman blew up the left-wing media after he leaked to the world that he was going to make a big announcement, and then he didn’t, because he just banned a couple of bankers.

„Well, it might hurt the bank with Russian ties, although I don’t know how often the people involved have traveled to the United States. The Hungarian government had interpreted the signal and withdrew from the International Investment Bank,”

– recalled the author of the article. As he put it: „the whole thing is more of a symbolic act, the smoke is bigger than the flame, and the essence of it is perhaps the message, not primarily to the Hungarian government, but mainly to the Russian government. If the war in Ukraine has become a US-Russia proxy war, then we here have become a diplomatic sideshow thanks to Mr. Pressman. It sends a message to us, but primarily to the Russians.”

There is, of course, another reading of the case, according to publicist Mr Szilvay, who believes that the conflict is primarily not a US-Hungary conflict, nor a West-East conflict, but rather

„a West-West conflict; a conflict between the Democratic Party and the Fidesz-Christian Democrat party alliance. In other words, an ideological confrontation. This is evident from the fact that we got along very well with the previous administration and the previous ambassador. And it can also be seen that the Hungarian right-wing is building ever closer ties with the Republicans.”
CPAC – perhaps the most significant gathering of the American right – is one of the main arenas for friendship between the American and Hungarian right-wing parties. The event took place in Budapest last year, and in a few weeks Hungary will once again host the series of events. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is being described as the „Orban of Florida” by a growing number of people, which is a sign of appreciation from the right, and one of astonishment from the left. In any case, Americans are following Hungary’s gender, family and immigration policy with increasing interest, writes the author, who believes that
the United States did not dare to introduce serious punitive measures, as Washington is afraid of the anger of American Republicans.



Hungary, sanctions, usa