The nomination of the Hungarian-American Antony Blinken for the position of Secretary of State (Minister of Foreign Affairs) is a huge success for those who have been working for the past 20-30 years on strengthening American-Hungarian relations. How did Hungary take the news, and what can the country do to use this advantageous situation?
For Hungarians, the appointment of Blinken has special importance, not only because he will be responsible for the relations between the two countries but also because he is of Hungarian origins from his mother’s side. Although his grandparents on this side were already born in the States, they were Hungarian Jews. Antony is to follow in his father’s footsteps, as in 1994, Donald Blinken was appointed Ambassador to Budapest in which position he worked until 1997 while successfully campaigning for Hungary joining NATO, writes Telex.
The appointment of Antony Blinken can bring changes to the whole world.
When it comes to his views on international affairs, he considers himself an interventionist. He believes that global powers, such as the United States of America, have the responsibility to protect those who had suffered any atrocities and to propagate the values of democracy.
He thinks they need to rebuild co-operations destroyed under the Trump presidency. Blinken would build a global system of co-operation among democracies of the world to repress the growing influence of Russia and China.
In relation to global migration, he believes that a wall and a fence are not the solution; they should rather prevent the migration of millions of people from these developing countries. For this purpose, they have to avoid armed conflicts and build a sustainable institutional system based on democracy. He says that financial aids allocated to developing countries need to be spent on governmental, legal, economic, and security reforms and to fight corruption.
Hungary can find itself in the spotlight together with Eastern Europe, primarily because of Russian and Chinese influence in the region. Blinken plans to stand up more directly against the two big powers than the Trump administration did. Part of this would mean the increase of NATO soldiers in the region, but it is absolutely possible that he will stand up against those countries as well that facilitate the Russian and Chinese increase of influence, for instance, Hungary.
This can be a source of tension causing conflict between the USA and Hungary, primarily because of the loans asked from Russia to build the country’s second nuclear power plant and those obtained from China for the Budapest-Belgrade railway line. Then there is the case of the Russian International Investment Bank openly doing its business in Budapest while it is considered by many the cover organisation of the Russian secret agency.
Meanwhile, one of the main sources of conflict in the upcoming year can be the 5G coalition against China if Hungary does not wish to join.
The point of the coalition, which most of the Western countries have joined already, is not to entrust Huawei or any other Chinese companies with the configuration of the 5G network because of the fear that the company can have access to information flowing through the system and can provide the Communist state party with it.
Overall, a foreign Minister of Hungarian origins could have a huge impact on the country and on the region as well. It could provide the possibility to tighten relations between the countries from a political, cultural, economic, technological, educational, or military point of view. Hungary could even obtain an enhanced position in the region.
However, the Orbán administration was the first one to openly support Donald Trump’s presidential ambitions. When Joe Biden was elected the next president of the United States, PM Orbán was the last one in the region to congratulate him; meanwhile, on the platforms of the state media, they were still not willing to accept his win. Moreover, news that had very little to do with the truth was published about how the new president had cheated.
This Tuesday, attacks on Blinken started as well, linking him and his father to George Soros and mentioning the negative opinion of Donald Blinken on the Orbán administration. The Prime Minister openly said he does not want the US to bother him with questions concerning corruption, human rights, and the systematic destruction of democracy, as the EU does. So it is not a surprise that he is not satisfied with Anthony Blinken who represents exactly this sort of politics.
Hungary has a real ace in his hands; it only depends on the government if they will take advantage of it, or the complete opposite, putting the country on a blacklist.