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Jobbik MEP’s bribe attempt to keep his Jewish origins secret

July 25th, 2012

A left-wing commentator doubts whether anyone within Jobbik will learn anything from the story of their MEP who turned out to be of Jewish descent. A right-wing pundit finds the spectacle of MEP Csanád Szegedi trying to bribe the man who blackmailed him with the ethnicity of his ancestors, abhorrent.

In a new twist to Csanád Szegedi’s humiliating story, an extreme right wing news portal has released a recording purporting to be a conversation between Szegedi and a man called Zoltán Ambrus, during which the Jobbik MEP offered his partner access to EU Parliament funds if he refrained from making his Jewish origins public. As BudaPost reported when the case erupted (see BudaPost, June30) the party chairman Gábor Vona told the press that the case proved that accusations of anti-Semitism levelled against Jobbik were false. Apparently Szegedi, a leading Jobbik member, did not think so, otherwise he would not have tried to bribe Ambrus in order to conceal his Jewish ancestry.

Ervin Tamás in Népszabadság wonders if the MEP knowingly tried to suppress his origins to prove his „magyar” sentiments, or whether the „stain” remained hidden in the family with the young man instinctively feeling that he had to do something to compensate. It is hard to believe, he says, that Csanád Szegedi never realized the discrepancy between the Holocaust-denial and other anti-Semitic views of his soul-mates and the fact that he – as he professes now – loved his grandmother, who is an Auschwitz survivor. The strategy of Jobbik members and supporters is to define achievement in terms of blood and „national” sentiment, and thus it is no surprise, he concludes, that Csanád Szegedi would go so far as to try and bribe the blackmailer.

In Magyar Hírlap, Zsolt Bayer calls the conversation between Csanád Szegedi and the blackmailer “terrifying”. Who are these people and who stands behind them? – he asks.  The person who threatened Szegedi was affiliated both with Jobbik circles and the group accused of having committed the murders of randomly selected Gypsy families in 2009, he claims. During the conversation, Bayer remarks, Szegedi expresses fear of his interlocutor, from which the commentator deduces that there must be hidden networks and hidden bosses beneath the surface. He finds especially abhorrent the scene in which Ambrus tells Szegedi that he and his friends started to suspect his Jewish origins when they spotted “specific racial traits” on his brother’s face. Although Bayer himself – he confesses – has often spoken out against what he calls ‘overreactions’ to anti-Semitism, he finds the idea of such conversations, and the scheming of shady figures around Jobbik, completely terrifying. Besides, a party which presents itself as the loudest critic of “the crimes of politicians” now turns out to count in its ranks the vilest example of a corrupt politician, he remarks.

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