“The Communists Come to Power in Hungary”
Hungary is located in what is considered central Europe with its capital city, Budapest, lying towards the northern part of the country. Contemporary Hungarian history is marked with two periods of totalitarian rule. In the years of 1939-1945 Hungary was subjected to Nazi occupation and the rise of Hungary’s own fascist party, the Arrow Cross party. Through 1944-1950 Hungary was liberated by the Red Army and the rise of communism began to take its hold on the war-torn nation. Many contributing factors have caused and allowed the communists to come to power. This paper’s purpose is to identify and evaluate the events leading up to the communist takeover and how the communists were able to gain and maintain their power. At the outbreak of World War II the Hungarian government pronounced that Hungary would remain a non-belligerent country. But throughout the year of 1939 Hungarian legislation passed a number of anti-Semitic laws that gave it a closer alliance with the Nazis. Hungary’s main connection with Germany was due to the fact that the German victories allowed Hungary to secure 52.9 percent of the territories lost due to the settlement of the Trianon Treaty after World War I (Crampton, 94). This did not mean, however, that the Hungarian government immediately joined the German war effort. The decision to join the war came on the 27th of June, 1941 (Crampton, 94). This resulted in one of the darkest periods of Hungarian history. Since joining the Nazis, the Hungarian economy became even more entwined to the mandates of the Germans, increased pressure from the Allies, as well as opposition to the deportation and murder of the Hungarian Jewish community facilitated Miklós Horthy’s decision to withdraw from the war and begin peace negotiations in March of 1944 (Crampton, 190). The attempt to declare an armistice resulted in the Nazis invading and occupying Hungary and installing a puppet...
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