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American Hungarian Federation Submits Written Statement To “Premature” Congressional Hearing On Hungary

Tamás Székely 2015.05.21.

The congressional subcommittee on Europe held a hearing on the future of US-Hungary relations on Tuesday evening was not attended by all actors, which play significant role in shaping bilateral relations between the two countries. Besides others the American Hungarian Federation (AHF) did not testify at the hearings.  In response to a question by Hungary Today, Frank Koszorus, Jr., president of AHF  said that, “we felt that since there are no pending issues that require immediate attention of the Congress and considering that the two countries have recently sent new and qualified ambassadors to Budapest and Washington, respectively, another date for the hearings could have been considered.”

A staunch supporter of good American-Hungarian relations, AHF expressed its views on the future of the US-Hungarian relations in a written statement sent to the Subcommittee. It addresses how good relations serve the strategic interests of both countries and the significant contribution Hungary has made and is making in promoting international peace and security.  The statement then  notes that although bilateral relations between the two allies are better recently since the arrival of the new U.S. ambassador to Budapest, the diplomatic ties could be further improved by three  steps by the United States. First, AHF believes that “the United States must remain engaged in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) on a constructive and evenhanded basis.” Second, a fair review of Hungary must be made on the basis of knowledge of Hungary, its people and its history and be free of even a hint of political partisanship. Finally, the statement cautions that “incessant public lecturing can backfire and undermine US strategic interests.”

From the Hungarian side, „strengthening democracy and democratic institutions, combating corruption and remaining a good NATO ally are key factors in promoting good bilateral relatoons with the United States,” notes the statement.

The American Hungarian Federation was founded in 1906 as an independent, non-partisan entity representing a broad cross-section of the Hungarian American community. From its founding, AHF has supported democracy, human and minority rights, and the rule of law in Central and Eastern Europe as well as good American-Hungarian relations and the strategic interests of the United States in the region. Over the past 100 years, AHF’s mission has broadened to include support of people of Hungarian descent on both sides of the Atlantic and also in the successor states of the Carpathian Basin.