There have been many signs of Kremlin’s increasing efforts to influence both decision-makers and the general public in the EU and member states. One of the political tools to exert such influence is through coopting certain far-right (and far-left) parties and organizations within the European Union. Russian influence of this kind is considered a major threat for European integration. In order to present the modus operandi of Kremlin in exerting influence, Political Capital launches a series of publications focusing on certain member states (Hungary, Slovakia, Greece and France) as well as the EU institutions. The first part of the series, which has been recently published, analyzes the pro-Kremlin stance of the Hungarian far-right, and particularly Jobbik.
Even though the Hungarian far-right and Jobbik, a major actor of the far-right scene, position themselves as representatives of Hungarian national interests, they have become uncritical and unconditional servant of the current Russian regime’s interests. This phenomenon cannot be explained by reasons connected to domestic politics: supporters of the West outnumber the adherents of Russia both among the general public and Jobbik’s voter base.
European far-right organizations serving Russian state interests fill three major functions:
- social and political destabilization at the member state, community and transatlantic levels alike;
- provision of external legitimization of the Russian regime (e.g., through ideological support and observation of elections);
- provision of information and spread of disinformation (i.e., transmit Russian propaganda to EU member states and gather intelligence).
Read the entire study here.