The Hungarian Uprising Redux

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Next month is the 50th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian uprising, the first popular revolt against Soviet domination in eastern Europe. Young Hungarians took to the streets of their capital on the Danube to raise their fist against communist rule before being crushed by Soviet tanks. Back then, in the midst of the uprising, the editors of Hungarian state radio announced to the country's stunned citizens that they had been lied to about the state of the economy and the activities of the government.

Hungarian Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsany may not have recognized the historical parallels that he was invoking when he told a meeting of his party members in May essentially the same thing: that the government had been lying to Hungarians about the state of the economy and their own activities for the past two years. "We lied in the morning, we lied in the evening," Gyurcsany said. "We screwed up. Not a little, a lot. No European country has done something as boneheaded as we have... Evidently, we lied throughout the last year and a half, two years."

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