Opinion | Why Hungary Inspires So Much Fear and Fascination

By Ross Douthat

Opinion Columnist

For the last few years, Hungary, a country of fewer than 10 million people, has occupied an outsize place in the imagination of American liberals and conservatives. If you think the American right is sliding toward authoritarianism, you cite Viktor Orban’s nationalist government as a dark model for the G.O.P. If you think an intolerant progressivism shadows American life, you invoke Orban as a figure who’s fighting back.

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