Sunday, January 9, 2011

Faces of Communism

Norm: On the southern outskirts of Budapest, somewhat hidden from prominant view, we found a boneyard of Hungary's wish to be forgotten past.
The Peoples Republic of Hungary, became the official communist state name in 1949  under an arbitrarilly apointed dictatorship of Prime Minister Rakkosi.

Under Rakkosi, Hungary experienced one of the harshest dictatorships in Europe. Repression was extreme upon the Hungarian people. Industry, farming and the entire work force was taken over by the Communist government. Religious instruction in the schools was denounced and purged from the education system and  replaced with communist propaganda.
Change started in the 1956 revolution when a student rebellion under Nagy Imre instigated a somewhat softening of the hard line repression of the People of Hungary. After the revolution which cost the life of many young countrymen, Hungary became the most reform-minded communist state in Eastern Europe, so its ultimate revolution was the least dramatic. Many of the intellectuals remained dispite the quasing of the revolution, continuing the fight against repression. In the 1980's a more relaxed atmosphere permitted growth toward a limited autonomy. 
 I'll never forget that notorious speach by President Reagan in Berlin. " Mr Gorbachev...Tear down this wall."
The final fall of the regime came in 1989. Budapest and other Eastern cities were dotted with numerous reminders of that dreaded era in the form of prominantly displayed statues. The Hungarian people no longer wished to live with that reminder on a daily basis. Down the statues came, not to be destroyed, but to find there way here to this Szobor Park as a momento of  the tyranny and a reminder to never return to anything like it again.
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