Hungarian Army

Such a question would sound blasphemous in the days of the Revolution of October 23rd, 1956, in which sending home the Soviet Army was a basic demand. However, according to, the Hungarian Army is so weak that it would not be able to resist until NATO forces arrive in case of a military conflict. Furthermore, it uses mostly Russian (former Soviet) military technology which – as a NATO-member – raises questions regarding national security. Especially because it is Russia that trains the pilots and drivers of our Russian helicopters and tanks.

Soviet technology, Russian help

According to, the Hungarian Army is entirely out-at-elbows. Only the aircraft can be regarded as more or less modern even though there are significant problems with their equipment. For example, the contract about the air-to-air missiles of the Gripens was signed only last year. Moreover, pilots cannot fly enough because

there is not enough money for fuel.

Hungarian army
BTR in action. Photo:édség-Referenciafotók-122464981148781

The MI-24 helicopters acquired from the German Democratic Republic in 1995 have not taken off since 2013. Recently, they were sent to Saint Petersburg for maintenance, so far 4 of them have returned.

Furthermore, Hungary got its Russian military transport helicopters from Finland. Not only the maintenance is done by the Russians but also the training of the new pilots. This is quite strange in case of a NATO-member.

Concerning ground forces, almost all weapons and equipment are old Russian ones. For example, the Hungarian Army has T-72 tanks which are all out of service. According to experts,

the army would need at least 50 new tanks.

Hungarian Army
Hungarian T-72 tanks. Photo:édség-Referenciafotók-122464981148781

Regarding the problem, a declaration of intent was signed with Turkey. Furthermore, Hungary would like to modernise its 600 BTR tanks also given by Russia.

Romania gets the most modern American weapons

Even though PM Orbán said many times that the NATO does not protect Hungary the truth is that the Hungarian Army would not be able to resist until NATO-forces arrive. Among the neighbours, only Austria has an adequate army. However, others are also arming themselves. For example, Romania gets the most modern American weapons since they are Washington’s most important ally in the region. Slovakia also tries to catch up with buying American Blackhawk helicopters and F-16 fighter jets. And though both Ukraine and Serbia have outdated armies, their soldiers have war experience.

In contrast, in Hungary

there are not enough soldiers.

Their number is around 27 thousand now, but about half of them work in background institutions. Besides, only one or two thousand of them have real combat experience. This is mostly because salaries are low while the life of a soldier is very hard.

Hungarian army
Soldiers protecting the border. Photo:édség-Referenciafotók-122464981148781

To make matters worse,

corruption exists even in the Army.

According to, all of the companies allowed to merchandise with arms in Hungary are connected to well-known oligarchs from István Garancsi to László Szíjj or Attila Paár. As we already reported, PM Orbán attended soccer matches on board of a private plane owned by Garancsi.


Source:, Daily News Hungary

  1. I would NOT be worried about the Russians, I would be more concerned about the US or NATO trying to regime change Hungary for not going along with Soros and the EU’s open borders agenda. It would actually be better for Hungary to remain neutral or ally itself with Russia. Hungary should up its spending on defensive weapons to retain its sovereignty. The US government is the friend of no one that does not bow down to it.

  2. What a sad state of a proud and courageous organization. Hungary better smarten up very quickly. The U.S. giving weapons and equipment to Romania is a big mistake. They will turn tail and run as they have done so many times in the past, so even though they are Nato member, the Hungarians better watch their backs. It seems that there is such grim news coming out of Hungary each day, whether it being the state of the military or the underfinancing of schools and medicine, its embarrassing.
    Mr. Orban should focus more of his attention on these three issues immediately.

  3. Hungary has refused to spend adequately for national defense. Current manpower 29,700 (about half the size of the New York City police Department) is completely inadequate to defend the country or even to hold off an enemy until reinforcements from NATO could arrive. Actual manpower is only about 25,000 of which only 8,000-10,000 are actual combat soldiers. A substantial number of these are out of the country at any given time on “peacekeeping missions” in places that have never known peace and never will. To make things worse, the military is top heavy, has a lot of old out of shape males and has the largest percentage (19%) of females in any armed force in the world. There are no real reserves. Right now they have no modern armor. The 32 old T72’s (and about 50 in storage) are so old they can’t even be sold. Much smaller countries in the region, like Bosnia, Croatia, Slovakia have more tanks than Hungary. Other neighboring countries (Romania, Serbia, Bulgaria) have as much as 800 tanks each. Recently, the government has decided to purchase 44 modern Leopard 2A7 tanks, 12 older Leopard 2A4’s and 24 modern self propelled guns. Most of these weapons will not be operational for 2-3 years. This is a step in the right direction but for a country whose neighbor (Ukraine) is in a state of war, these numbers are also inadequate. The Air Force currently has only 11 modern combat planes. Similar size countries (Sweden, Finland, Austria0 have more planes. Hungary needs at least 54-72 modern combat planes to have a credible Air Force. Military expenditures (about 1% of GDP) are below NATO Standards and a disgrace. The day is coming when Hungary may have to face a potential adversary with a tiny, poorly armed, poorly trained, poorly equipped military that will not last more than 24-72 hours in a 21st Century war.

  4. Hungary has very poor infrastructure and it is rather unfortunate it’s government is more concerned with getting rich. Not only true with Orban but Gyurcsany was the same. Hospitals need to be built, schools need repair, teachers, doctors and nurses need to be paid as well. The population/workforce needs to be brought up to European standard with regards to pay. Sure there are lots of new businesses being brought into the country, but the workers can not be underpaid. The onus is on the government and it needs to treat the people properly.
    Hungary’s military, although starting to come around, needs to be quickly brought up to speed. More recruits, better training and equipment plus a reserve. Maybe with the purchase of new tanks, artillery and helicopters it will help to attract members. A more professional and larger force is required. 35-50 000 plus a reserve about the same size. A three/four year college course should also include military training throughout. It is not being warlike, but it is for the defense of the country. Switzerland can do it.

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