Originally published in Spectator Blogs
Fascinating events in Hungary where Prime Minister Viktor Orban continues to come under fire from other EU member states for trying to maintain what we used to call ‘borders’.
This has now led Orban into direct confrontation with Hungary’s richest export – billionaire financier George Soros. Orban identifies Soros as being one among a number of ‘activists’ whose organisations share part of the blame for encouraging migrants to come to Europe and for lobbying Europeans to regard borders and sovereignty as things of the past.
Soros has now responded in a most illuminating manner, confirming that the many groups he funds are indeed working for precisely the ends Prime Minister Orban described. In an email to Bloomberg, Soros says that his foundation is trying to ‘uphold European values’ while Orban is trying to ‘undermine those values’. Making it clearer, Soros writes of Orban:
‘His plan treats the protection of national borders as the objective and the refugees as an obstacle. Our plan treats the protection of refugees as the objective and national borders as the obstacle.’
Putting aside Soros’s depiction of the hundreds of thousands of people coming into Europe as ‘refugees’ rather than – more accurately in most cases – ‘economic migrants’, perhaps in the next round the Hungarian Prime Minister can point out to Mr Soros that without national borders those ‘European values’ he seems so keen on will be blown away like so much sand.