Europe is changing its tune: Now the much-mocked fence on Hungary’s border is becoming an example for all, writes Magyar Hírlap columnist Zsolt Sütő-Nagy
The change in wind direction has just been confirmed by Manfred Weber, leader of the European People’s Party parliamentary group. The German politician, who has a keen sense of change, recently said: ‘If there is no other way to stop illegal immigration, we must be prepared to build fences.’
This was not always the case, as eight years ago he took a stand in disseminating by Angela Merkel Weber, however, was disappointed with Angela Merkel because, despite being the People’s Party’s top candidate in the last European Parliament elections, he was not able to run because Viktor Orbán and Emmanuel Macron, who he often criticized, found someone else better suited to lead the European Commission.
Although the then-crowned Ursula von der Leyen has since been a disappointment, and corruption cases have not been far from her mind. On the other hand, Weber was lobbying this week for the European People’s Party coalition to include him as its top candidate next year, but it is not enough for him to be acceptable at home because Europe seems to have had enough of Germany dictating the agenda.
Meloni’s Italy has already made it clear that it wants to limit migration, and French President Emmanuel Macron has been even more spectacular in his opposition to the German line in recent weeks.
Sometimes critical of the Hungarian prime minister himself, Macron has realized that he has nothing to lose, as the French constitution says he cannot be president for a third time and so far, he is only remembered for his yellow vest and pension reform protests, which are hardly a great mark in terms of his place in European history.
German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock was the loudest in her protestations; she did not recognize the shifting winds and said there was no place for such dissent in the EU.
All this in a single week: Border fences, the protection of European interests and a ceasefire to prevent the war from escalating are no longer the devil’s work, and after Meloni, Weber, and Macron have now backed Viktor Orbán. If this continues, by next May, the mainstream will be behind the Hungarian prime minister, who had previously been dismissed by Europe’s elite as anti-human, authoritarian and pro-Putin