- Guest Writer
The continuing story of the European Council silencing Viktor Orbán
The European Council is in its third day of deliberations at EuroMUN 2021. The heads of state and heads of government of the European Union are discussing the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) of the Union. Unlikely for the contentious topic, the mood in the committee still seems cooperative and almost cheerful. That is with one exception: Viktor Orbán, the brave lone fighter for border security, law, and order in Europe, keeps being silenced by the rest of the committee.
On several occasions, the Hungarian Prime Minister reminded his peers of previous accords reached on EU immigration control and of the Member States’ responsibilities under the Schengen Agreement, which his country alone courageously upheld in 2015 when Europe was overrun by illegal immigrants. His remarks are met with reservation at best, if not brutal disregard. The Prime Minister’s contribution to the working paper, clauses relating to illegal migration as a concern for the CSDP, were simply removed by the other European leaders. Responding to Orbán’s protest, Netherland’s Mark Rutte cautiously admitted that the Hungarian could add his ideas again, but was cautious to insist they should go ‘to the end’ of the document.
But not only the work on the Council Conclusions is distorted by disrespect for Orbán’s rightful striving. The debate itself is dominated by it. In a consultation of the whole Council, Orbán’s virtual raised hand remained unheeded for 9 of the 10 minutes allocated for the consultation. When he was finally given the floor, for the last miserly few seconds, there was, of course, no time for his fellow heads of government and heads of state to respond to his statement; not that there would have been any interest on their side either.
The pinnacle of disrespect was reached when Council President Charles Michel, appointed to be an impartial facilitator, cut in half the length of a caucus on Frontex and its role in border control, a topic in which the Orbán had clearly demonstrated interest previously. The decision, half-heartedly excused with ‘limited time’ before a ‘feedback session’ was ‘scheduled’, clearly demonstrates that the Council Presidency’s priorities lie not with fulfilling their mandate, but with furthering a leftist liberal agenda. Belgium, home state of Michel, advocated a ‘civilian defence policy’, whatever that oxymoron may designate. The Council President’s convictions also shone through in his remarks on the creatively gendered appearance of the present heads of state of state and heads of government. If, in your world, Mr. Michel, everyone can be everything, why can Viktor Orbán not be a fully respected and acknowledged member of a Union of equals?
This report was brought to you by E. Normous Peter, EuroMUN 2021 Special Correspondent for the European Council. Brought to you by the Mestreech Dimp Plow Mat, subsidiary of KESMA.