Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Think Tanks Distance Themselves from Hungary Money

Here is more from the New York Times:

Last year, two prominent foreign policy think tanks in Washington severed ties with the Hungary Foundation, a group funded by the Hungarian government, amid concerns about its connections.

To finance some of the efforts in the US, [Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor] Orban’s government authorized the creation and funding of a nonprofit group in 2012 that would come to be known as the Hungary Foundation.

It has donated more than $5.2 million through the end of last year to think tanks, conservative groups, colleges and Hungarian-American organizations.  
[Hungarian Foundation] executive director Anna Smith Lacey appeared at exclusive gatherings with US officials overseeing Central Europe organized by recipients of foundation grants, including the Atlantic Council and the Center for European Policy Analysis, each of which had received more than $200,000 from the Hungary Foundation.


The article goes on to note that in 2020, Atlantic Council returned a $158,000 grant and ended its relationship with the Hungary Foundation.  CEPA also ended its relationship with the foundation amid concerns about its ties to Mr. Orban as well as a potential conflict between diplomat Kurt Volker's role as a board member of the foundation and a fellow at CEPA.

Here is a previous Think Tank Watch piece about Hungary sponsoring English-language think tanks to promote Orban.