Hungary’s Jewish community sees frightening precedent in the recent creation of the Magyar Garda (Hungarian Guard) by the far-right party Jobbik this week.
The Guard, a paramilitary group with the avowed goal of providing “physical, mental and spiritual training to help maintain public order, preserve Hungarian culture and defend the nation in extraordinary situations,” has uniforms and a coat of arms similar to that of Hungary’s Nazi-aligned Arrow Cross party that coordinated efforts to send Jews to concentration camps during World War II.
The creation of the Guard sparked counter-demonstrations and condemnation by Hungarian Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsany, who called them “Hungary’s shame.”
Jobbik has no seats in Parliament, but its candidates competed widely in the last election, according to Deutsche Presse-Agentur.
“Extreme-right party swears in first members of militia”
Deutsche Presse-Agentur, August 26, 2007