The following is a comment I placed on The Duran channel from locals.
Of course, there are many other factors involved and many other influences, long or short term, subtle or easily observable, but I’m pretty sure the essence of what I tried to capture in the next lines remains and will remain true for quite some time.
This [high level Hungary-Russia diplomacy] is one of the enveloping moves in the German-Russian rapprochement.
Hungary plays the recon in force for Germany with the blessing of Russia too.
As it did in 1989 when it allowed east Germans to go through its territory to seek political asylum in Austria and west Germany. As it did in the 90s when it allowed German weapons, alongside its own, to reach Croatia and explode Yugoslavia.
It’s not a coincidence that the 3 NATO countries who officially rejected participation in a potential Ukrainian conflict are the two staunch allies of Germany – Hungary and Croatia and the always friendly to the Russians nation of Bulgaria (even in the two world wars, when they were on opposite sides, Bulgaria never crossed a certain limit of involvement against Russia/Soviets).
And it’s not a coincidence the 2 NATO countries (Poland + Romania) who feel the most threatened by a realignment of European (geo)political arrangements under a German-Russian partnership are firmly in the American boat.
Hungary is lucky to have a solid political personality like V. Orban and it is only logical he would take the front stage, but no matter how you look at it, without the benevolent/tacit/’silent partner’ backing from Germany it wouldn’t venture on such a risky path.
Meanwhile USA experience the worst leadership ever, which also partly explains the beheaded chicken behavior of UK diplomacy.
Hungary has possible territorial demands on Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine. But they are not all clear cut. In Ukraine (aside northern Bukovina and southern Bessarabia) Romania also has an ethnic presence in an area overlapping the area where Hungarians are present – part of the historical Maramures. Also in Serbia’s Vojvodina, which Hungary potentially targets, there’s a significant Romanian minority. And I could go on.
Every time these ethnic/territorial/minorities rights/privileges issues where settled or put to rest large powers in Europe (+US after WW1) had a significant role to play.
So it is now – and not only in the last 8 years (since the major shift in Ukraine). The long term German policy after the collapse of the communist block followed a constant penetration – economic and political and ‘with other means’ – Yugoslavia’s case – of the East. Austria and Hungary towed along constantly, regardless of the political ideologies prevalent in the respective countries.