It’s no coincidence that US Charge D’Affaires David Kostelancik’s criticism of Hungary’s media scene came right after the State Department’s programme to fund “objective media outside Budapest”, former US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Thomas O’Melia told Hungarian news site HVG.hu.
Kostelancik receives his orders from Washington DC, he’s cooperating with his colleagues at the State Department, O’Melia said. According to the diplomat, “Hungary has many friends” who speak up when things are going in the wrong direction, “like regarding democracy, after the 2010 elections”. The goal of these friends, he added, is to inform the Hungarian public that the USA knows what is happening in Hungary, it cares about Hungary and that there are some disappointing developments which are dangerous to Hungary’s democracy, economic and social development. O’Melia explained that the government makes Hungary less democratic by silence those who think differently, such as NGOs or journalists.
According to O’Melia, even if the Hungarian government and its lobbyists in Washington DC keep saying that everything is fine, “we know what’s going on”. He reminded that when he and fellow diplomats wrote a letter to protect Kostelancik, they received more support than those congressmen, who attacked the US diplomat.