‘You are going to die here’: Neo-Nazis attack Roma, government fails to condemn attack
“YOU are going to die here,” shouted members of a 1,000-strong march as they stopped at houses they thought were a home to Roma, hurling their water bottles and stones to emphasise their point. On August 5th, Devecser, a village in western Hungary, was inundated by neo-Nazis. In a village of little more than 5,000, most of the indignant mob was bused in.
The leaders of the groups marching included Gabor Ferenczi of Jobbik, a far-right party that won 16% of the vote in the last election in 2010. The party, though no stranger to such set-piece confrontations, had previously shied away from sharing a podium with certain neo-Nazi groups.
This time was different. Zsolt Tyirityán, a leading figure in the Outlaw Army, stood in front of the village church arguing for racial warfare and the need to “exterminate Roma from public life”. Devecser’s mayor, Tamas Toldi, a member of the ruling rightist Fidesz party, says he was unable to stop the gathering, which he had been told was a peace march.
Mr Toldi says he was “really angry” at the speeches, but it would have been “unwise” to try and stop proceedings in mid-flow because the police would not have been able to assert their authority. The 200 or so on duty were mustered locally and not trained or equipped to deal with an angry hoard of neo-Nazis.
Not a peep of condemnation has come from Fidesz, which controls a two-thirds majority in parliament. With an election due in early 2014, Fidesz, which has lost voters to Jobbik, knows that there are hardly any votes in standing up for the Roma. The party also doesn’t want to alienate its lunatic fringe or create a barrier to Jobbik voters who might be tempted to switch to Fidesz.
The Hungarian government has lost control. The government cannot oppose neo-Nazis without losing votes. This savage attack on Roma and eliminationist rhetoric has gone unopposed.
This is sickening and scary as hell. The EU needs to act on this. The Roma are the most vulnerable population in Europe and Europe has completely fucking failed to protect them or do right by them.
Europeans have persecuted Roma for centuries. They owe them a huge moral debt. It is not acceptable to continue persecuting them.