Home Featured Occupy Brussels! Viktor Orbán’s plan for Europe – POLITICO
Occupy Brussels! Viktor Orbán’s plan for Europe – POLITICO

Occupy Brussels! Viktor Orbán’s plan for Europe – POLITICO

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Leading the country’s ideological assault is the Mathias Corvinus Collegium (commonly referred to as MCC), an Orbán-backed think tank. The government-affiliated organization opened a branch in Brussels in 2022, offering an unapologetically conservative take on EU affairs as it seeks to disrupt the Brussels think tank circuit.

The Brussels branch, with a staff of about 20, is an offshoot of a privately funded educational foundation based in Budapest, which was granted €1.4 billion by the Hungarian state during the COVID pandemic — just as Budapest was tightening the screws on other academic organizations in the country, including the George Soros-backed Central European University.

To imbue the next generation of Hungarian luminaries with conservative values, the organization gives children, often from poor backgrounds, scholarships to attend centers across Hungary, where they partake in extra-curricular activities and education.

Orbán at the MCC Budapest Summit in Budapest in 2019 | Tibor Illyes/EFE via EPA

“There is a chance that they are going to be among the next generation leaders of Hungary, not just in the political realm, but in the spheres of culture, economy, business,” said Balázs Orbán, a top adviser (but no relation) to the Hungarian prime minister and the driving force behind MCC. 

At a recent MCC event in Brussels, young staffers from the European Parliament mingled with representatives from EU countries, as they heard from various right-wing speakers on the rise of populism. 

The aim of the association, director Frank Furedi told attendees, was to provide people with the “intellectual resources” to counter a dominant culture that wants to “shove gender politics down our throat” and “destroy our past.” 

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