Viktor Orban Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Europe’s New Appeasers

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has such a tight grip on power that Hungarians must depend on external pressure to stop the slide into authoritarianism. And yet even Germany, the only country that can exert significant influence, has failed to stop Orbán's latest attack on democracy.

WARSAW – Back in the 1990s, in the early days of Central Europe’s post-communist transition, Poland’s current de facto ruler Jarosław Kaczyński inelegantly exclaimed, “It’s our fucking turn” (Teraz kurwa my). More recently, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s commissioner for culture, Imre Kerényi, himself a communist before 1989, said much the same thing: “It’s our turn.”