News from Rumania: The Hungarian Minority
6/17/2014 - AHF Book Review: "Transylvania Today: Diversity at Risk," edited by Csaba Zoltani. Written by noted experts, describes the issues faced by minorities in Transylvania in their effort to retain their identity in an adverse environment. The essays of the book capture some of the fault lines in Transylvania, created by the incorporation of a territory with western traditions into one of Byzantine culture. Minorities, according to the official census, constitute nearly one-quarter of the population of Romania. Contributors include Amb. Geza Jeszenszky, Prof. Andrew Ludanyi, Tilhamer Czika, Viktor Segesvary, and Andreas Bereznay. [read more]
6/14/2014 - AHF Republishes June 14, 1985 Wall Street Journal article: When Romania Turned Hungarian Bibles into Toilet Paper. 20,000 bibles donated in the 1970s by the World Reformed Alliance of the Transylvanian Magyar Reformed Church with the permission of Bucharest were diverted to a mill for recycling into toilet paper. [read more]
6/4/2014 - 94th Anniversary of the Treaty of Trianon: AHF issues short statement highlighting how shortsighted "peacemakers'" mistakes led to millions of people being cut off from their motherland, caused untold suffering, assured the rise of Hitler, the expansion of Bolshevism, and set the stage for unneccesary conflict still with us today:
Yes, it gets worse! [read more]
5/30/2014 - AHF organizes meeting with the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission of the United States Congress, discusses situation of the Hungarian minority in Romania including the revocation of the Knight's Order of the Star of Romania from Bishop Laszlo Tokes. Bishop Tokes' transgression was speaking out for the rights of the Hungarian minority in Romania. AHF has raised the issue with the US Helsinki Commission as well as with the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission. [read more]
5/28/2014 - Bishop Laszlo Tokes confers Báthory Award for American Hungarian Federation President Frank Koszorus, Jr. In 2010, on the recommendation of the Bolyai Committee (BKB), the Hungarian National Council of Transylvania (EMNT) had bestowed the Bathory Award upon Mr. Koszorus who has championed the rights of national minorities for over thirty years, but was unable to attend the awards ceremony in Transylvania in 2010 when BKB and EMNT also bestowed the award upon 14 other awardees, including US Congressman Tom Lantos and Gov. George Pataki. The Bathory Award is given to those outstanding individuals who contributed to cause of Hungarian-language higher education in Romania. [read more]
7/13/2011 - AHF Reacts to Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD), Co-Chairman of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, who questioned democracy in Hungary and criticized expressions of concern for Hungarian minorities. AHF's letter expressed its steadfast conviction that judgments be "objective, fair, balanced and based on facts and not generalizations and speculation." It also urged the Helsinki Commission not to ignore the Hungarian minorities but to publicly and privately encourage Slovakia and Romania "to build tolerant societies by respecting the rights of their Hungarian and other minorities and the rule of law." [read more]
Levelet írt az egyik szenátornak az Amerikai Magyar Szövetség [tovább]
Miért támadja Magyarországot az amerikai szenátor? [tovább]
American-Hungarian federation strike back at US senator... [read more]
6/28/2011 -- The American Hungarian Federation Expresses Concern About Romania Ignoring Minority Rights and Redistricting... The American Hungarian Federation, (“AHF”) founded in 1906 as an umbrella organization representing a broad cross-section of the Hungarian American community, has supported democracy, human and minority rights and the rule of law in Central and Eastern Europe. The situation of the Hungarian community living in Romania has been and is of concern to AHF.
AHF issued a statement expressing its concern that more than two decades after the collapse of Communism, Romania has yet to fulfill its promises to its ethnic Hungarians. Although Romania was accepted into NATO and the EU based, in part, on these promises, the irrefutable record demonstrates that its laws and practices continue to fail to conform to European and Western standards relating to human and minority rights, but in effect aggravate inter-ethnic tension. [read more]
4/7/2010 -- AHF article on Autonomy for Romania's Hungarian Communities published in Foreign Policy Review...The article entitled, "Autonomy: The Path to Democracy and Stability in Romania," Foreign Policy Review, volume 6 (2009)," makes a compelling case for the recognition of autonomy as a means of strengthening democracy and stability in Romania. The author, AHF President Frank Koszorus, Jr.,* points out that since autonomy is about power sharing, it is an essential element in a country such as Romania insofar as democracy also is about power sharing. [read more]
1/9/10 -- The American Hungarian Federation urged Vice President Biden to discuss policies with his "Romanian interlocutors that they should adopt to strengthen Romania's democratic institutions and respect the rights of its Hungarian minority" during his trip to Romania. Frank Koszorus, Jr., co-president and chairman of the Federation's International Relations Committee reports, "We understand that issues relating to the Hungarian minority were raised." The letter called on the US to "exert its vigilance and influence to insist that Romania honor its commitments to insure minority rights and diversity in Romania. It needs to remind Romania that law and order are the foundations of a stable democracy." AHF submitted a letter and attached a brief outlining some of AHF's Concerns related to the Hungarian Minority in Transylvania. [read more]
6/14/2007 - "There are no Nationalities in Romania?" The American Hungarian Federation Co-Hosts Lecture by Bishop Arpad Szabo from Kolozsvar... The Federation and the Hungarian Reformed Federation of America (HRFA) sponsored a presentation by Dr. Arpad Szabo entitled "In Europe, but . . ." at the HRFA Kossuth House. Bishop Szabo is the head of the Unitarian Church in Romania and is in the United States to attend the General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association. The Federation’s program was the latest in its series of lectures relating to Central and Eastern Europe.
- The American Hungarian Federation Condemns Latest Minority
Rights Violations By Romania: Sanctions Against Hungarian
Professors At Babes-Bolyai University For Promoting Bilingualism.
"Unfortunately we must continue to remember Trianon, not merely as a historical event -- “the greatest catastrophe to have befallen Hungary since the battle of Mohacs in 1526,” as noted by Sir Bryan Cartledge -- but as a current problem that needs to be judiciously addressed. What is the current problem ninety-one years after the Treaty was imposed upon Hungary? It is the discrimination, intolerance, and, in some cases, hatred directed toward the Hungarian minorities living in the Successor States. Steps must be taken to ensure that Western values, democratic principles and international norms and practices relating to national minorities will finally prevail in Central and Eastern Europe, thereby at long last relegating Trianon to the history books." - Frank Koszorus, Jr., AHF President
Why So Many Hungarians Across the Border?
One thousand years of nation building successfully delineated groups based on culture, religion, geography, and other attributes to create the countries with which we are so familiar. While some Western European nations would continue power struggles and princely battles and civil wars, Hungary, founded in 896, was a peaceful multi-ethnic state for a 1000 years and her borders were virtually unchanged. Until 1920...
The Treaty of Trianon in 1920... in the aftermath of WWI, was extremely harsh on Hungary and unjustifiably one-sided. The resulting "treaty" lost Hungary an unprecedented 2/3 of her territory, and 1/2 of her total population or 1/3 of her Hungarian-speaking population. Add to this the loss of up to 90% of vast natural resources, industry, railways, and other infrastructure. The clear winner of the land grab, was Rumania, who, established only 60 years earlier, more than doubled in size overnight.
Ethnic Distribution in the Kingdom of Hungary in 1910 (Hungarians shown in red)
Hungarian populations declined significantly after forced removals such as the Benes Decrees and other pograms, the effects of WWI, and Trianon in 1920. With continued pressure and discriminative policies such as the 2009 Slovak Language Law, this trend continued over the past 90 years.
[read more on the Treaty of Trianon]