Photo: Viktor Orbán during the period of the first secret service recruitment attempt. Source here.
On the occasion of the parliamentary elections on April 3, 2022, important not only for Hungary, but also for Romania and the European Union, LARICS has started a wide-ranging, multi-episode series on the political and strategic realities in the neighbouring country. We tried to unravel recent developments in Hungary, with a focus on the main characters and the team around them. In this issue, we conclude this episode by bringing to the public’s attention a novel interpretation of the Orbán regime’s successes – Viktor Orbán’s collaboration with Soviet and Hungarian security. The first part of this series can be read here, the second part here, the third here, the fourth here, the fifth here, the sixth here, the seventh here. The English version of this episode can be read HERE and the Hungarian version HERE. (LARICS).
Apparently, there are no coincidences in Hungary either. The question that has been bothering many people for a long time is how did Viktor Orbán come to the fore so quickly and so high up? Why the lack of reaction of the Hungarian establishment to his rise and stay in power? Where did this provincial, totally unknown young man come from to speak on June 16, 1989, among the (ONLY) six speakers in the square, just before the official abdication of the party-state and the withdrawal of the occupying Soviet troops, in front of 250,000 people gathered in Budapest’s Heroes’ Square? Who propelled him there? Did he really escape the vigilance of the Hungarian security services that George Soros has been supporting, from 1986 (!), in the midst of the Communist regime, with the Russian army on the ground and the entire Soviet KGB network in Hungary, the law students’ group at Bibó College, where Viktor Orbán himself was president?
Hard to believe. So, the question remains: Was Viktor Orbán a kind of self-made man, who, in Hollywood-like fashion, rose from the bottom, alone, during the communist regime, made a formidable team of friends and, despite all the obstacles put in his way by the system, prevailed and became…. the System itself?
It seems that the answer is a little more prosaic, and Viktor Orbán’s story is not an American… movie story, but an Eastern one, of that East that suddenly emerged in 1990 from the thumb of the Soviet regime and its instruments of subjugation and control. Including, or first and foremost, the Security!
A story of collaborators, infiltrators, protected, propelled.
From this perspective, the answer to the dilemma of Viktor Orbán’s meteoric rise would be, according to the Budapest press, a “natural” one in our parts. Otherwise said, Viktor Orbán was and is not only the product of goulash-communism, but even the product… of Hungarian Security.
Therefore, it’s like Radio Yerevan: it’s true that he rose, but not from the bottom, but from the “height” of the secret services.
Viktor Orbán will probably become, when times are right, another “Petrov” of Eastern Security.
Until then, though, let’s see what’s on the table now.
The questions Viktor Orbán won’t answer
The discussion about Viktor Orbán’s membership or connection to the Hungarian secret service is an old one. It was first talked about this in Hungary in 2009, a pre-election year, then the debates resurfaced in 2012, and in 2021 they began to be publicly discussed again. No light has ever been shed on them, despite questions to the Hungarian Prime Minister himself.
Viktor Orbán’s 1981 recruitment proposal.
Viktor Orbán has never said anything about the army conscription episode (see photo) to his friends or close associates. It was only in 2005, 25 years after the episode, that Orbán, under pressure from the press, made public a document from the State Security Service archive that said the “attempt” had been unsuccessful.
But that’s not all.
The file on Viktor Orbán’s collaboration with the security service has other important milestones.
In 2012, Kuruc.info publication revisits the file and puts on the table elements that would also have required urgent clarification from Viktor Orbán (here and here). But they never came.
What’s it all about?
Kuruc.info releases a number of documents from the archives of the former communist-Soviet security service, including a holographic note by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, which the paper presents as authentic beyond any doubt (Kuruc.info journalists say they have sent the holographic note to an expert and the handwriting undoubtedly belongs to the Hungarian prime minister).
The note is reproduced below:
Photo: holograph note of Viktor Orbán
They appear in the holographic note:
Temesvari/Timisoara – secret delegate – internal FIDESZ member
Gábor Győri network person
According to the quoted newspaper, István Csáki, who appears in the holograph note is the same as Security Major István Csáki of the Main Security Group II. The second name: a secret agent under the pseudonym “Timișoara”, was identified by journalists as Zsolt Szeszák (born December 9, 1968 in Miskolc).
But who is “Györi Gábor”?
And this is where the bomb explodes. According to another Hungarian security document, dated June 23, 1989, Lt. Tarjan Istvan identifies Viktor Orbán (born 31.02.1963 in Szekesfehervar) as the contact person “Gyori Gabor” (see document below).
Although the name “Gábor Győri” is also key in another document which is no longer handwritten but is an official document, Viktor Orbán, write the people from Kuruc.info, has never had the courage and honesty to clarify his relationship with him. The authentic document issued by the Historical Archives of the State Security Services cannot simply be ignored. But Viktor Orbán has done exactly that so far.
Back to the holographic document. The fourth name is “Kövér”. The arrow pointing in the direction of “Gábor Győri” can be interpreted in several ways, says Kuruc.info: if we consider it an equal sign, then “Gábor Győri” is the same as László Kövér, so there would be two conspiratorial names used; if not, the sign could mean something else. But the Prime Minister did not answer this question either, even though the media sent it to him through all channels.
Revolution “with police permission” or about “revolutionaries” with the protection of the System
Photo: Viktor Orbán and George Soros in the Budapest Parliament. Source here.
Surely there is and will be more evidence in this file. For now, the Orbán regime is keeping it under wraps. But the bombshell is on the clock. And ticking. In the meantime, circumstantial evidence can still be brought that proves unequivocally that, in reality, the young Viktor Orbán has never stayed away from power – or the power from him! – always with a protective umbrella over his head, often invisible.
One such piece of evidence showed by the Budapest media suggesting or even confirming Viktor Orbán’s collaboration with the Hungarian secret services comes from a “top secret” document in the reports of the Fejer district militia inspectorate, where it is very clear how the future prime minister’s actions or his or his fiancée’s trips abroad are followed and protected at the highest level (document below).
We will reproduce this document, including the comment with which it appeared in the press in 2012: “From the check of Viktor Orbán’s entourage of the state’s security body of the Fejer County Police Inspectorate, drawn up in May 1982, one can read: sometimes he is full of himself, conceited, shows a rebellious attitude… towards his friends he is sometimes hypocritical, characterized by the pursuit of his own interests. His abilities are judged to be average… His ideals are the practitioners of intellectual occupations, and among them those who have a public role related to the interests of the moment. His mental development has been positively influenced by his father’s manifold social concerns, his clarity as a member of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party. In general, he is characterised as a young man loyal to our socialist system”.
Kuruk.info also notes that “for the security of the communist state, a special guarantee was the person of Viktor Orbán’s father, Gyozo Orbán, an honest and respected follower of the Kadar regime (about Viktor Orbán’s father and the Orbán family in general, see here, n.n.). From February 21, 1982, as a result of an interstate contract, he worked in Libya, and returned permanently to Hungary in 1983-84. He is a socialist brigadier with multiple “Leading Worker” awards. He is known to have been a member of the UTC since 1958, and carried out active organisational work. Since 1966 he has been a member of the PSMU as a propagandist. His formed opinion about our social development is consistently communist, which can be seen in his childhood education“.
This is the context in which Viktor Orbán grew up. And that’s not all. The reality that has been proven from the state security reports of August 1986 is that István Horváth, Minister of Homer Affairs, member of the Central Committee of the Hungarian Socialist People’s Party, father-in-law István Stumpf, Manager of the Faculty of Law and coordinator of Bibó College, was in fact the protector of Viktor Orbán and of his entourage.
Photo: István Horváth, the powerful Minister of Home Affairs in the Hungarian People’s Republic, father-in-law of István Stumpf, Principal of the famous Bibó College, financed with George Soros’ money since 1986, where Viktor Orbán and his team grew up.
Viktor Orbán therefore had a strong umbrella of protection from the beginning. And, as the Hungarian publication says, “they knew this, especially Orbán and Anikó Lévai (Viktor Orbán’s fiancée)”. “They get to know everything in advance, laughing, joking, accepting police actions with ‘brave criticism’ and mocking remarks because they can be sure that whatever happens, they can’t get hurt. This is stated openly several times by Anikó Lévai, whose confident sentences appear one after the other in state security reports.”
Here is a concrete example presented in the pages of Kuruc.info: “On August 12, 1986, the Chief of Section III/III of the Nógrád Police Inspectorate, receives the report of a secret employee under the pseudonym “Bátonyi”: What I describe below, please treat very confidentially and discreetly. I have already mentioned several times that our acquaintance (Anikó Lévai, – editor’s note) is very well informed about all events on the line, even in government circles. Even if they are confidential, they get the information first hand, which is no small thing, as it is not accessible to everyone. What’s it all about? One of the members of the organisation, Andrea Horváth and her husband (István Stumpf, – editor’s note), who is the principal of a big college in Budapest, know everything about the events in the country, even if they are confidential. They live in a beautiful villa on Rózsadomb in Budapest. Andrea Horváth, on the other hand, is none other than the daughter of HI (István Horváth, Minister of Home Affairs, – ed.), the daughter of a CC member. The meeting will take place in the near future in Dorogháza: Dr. Anikó Lévai, her fiancé (soon to be married, Viktor Orbán ed.), Andrea Horváth and her husband and two other people whose names I do not know.”
Photo: Young Viktor and Anikó – “oppositionists” under the umbrella of the ruling party. Source here.
“Bátonyi” sends a note on August 27: “Horváth knows everything at the national level and what he knows the organization knows, especially through his daughter Andrea Horváth…. about all the events that have been decided at the government level, but have not yet been brought to the public’s attention at all. Whether it’s a matter outside or within the government’s duty… More and more members of the organisation are going abroad to give lectures and through which they are also getting adequate support from the West. One person was in New York today, another person is going to West Germany tomorrow. If one of the members has a conflict with the law, the police, if someone needs to be taken out of prison, Minister István Horváth will take care of it. Doctor (Anikó Lévai, – editor’s note) said that it doesn’t matter if her fiancé was arrested for instigation or for something else (Viktor Orbán, – editor’s note), because Horváth will take immediate action and her fiancé will be released immediately.”
Another story from Eastern Europe, with the Security’s men…
What does this mean? One thing. Viktor Orbán was never a self-made man, coming from nowhere, a ruthless knight in shining armour against the communist system. He can be called “a successful project”, only it is not the “successful project” of a self-made-man, but of… Soviet and Hungarian secret services.
When the Orbán regime collapses, its tentacles shall be removed, and the democratization of Hungary will really happen, more documents will be unearthed, and questions unanswered today will then be answered. And at that point, Viktor Orbán’s past will have to be redrawn with all cards on the table. And the current all-powerful leader will probably end up like his buddy in Bucharest, the former president of Romania, “Petrov” by his communist security name, who also thought he could lie to everyone, every time.
Are we to expect Viktor Orbán to be rejected, humiliated, thrown to the margins of public life like a rotten apple that no one wants to know about after long terms of domination and control?
*C. Ioana is a graduate of the Master of Security Studies at the University of Bucharest and a LARICS expert on the Hungarian issue.