Talk:Hungarian Revolution of 1956/Archive 2

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

My review

For first (fast) read: - * lead is too long - * more images are needed - * Notes section should be References section - In the next few days I'll read it sentence by sentence and search for faults, unreferenced statements. I hope it'll become FA soon. :)

Good work! NCurse work 11:41, 24 September 2006 (UTC)

Notes & References sections are appropriately labeled, they just are (were) out of order per Wikipedia:Guide to layout.--Paul 14:43, 24 September 2006 (UTC)
What about Notes and references per Wikipedia:Guide to layout? NCurse work 14:45, 24 September 2006 (UTC)
If you are referring to "4. References (or combined with "Notes" into Notes and references)," the article has both "References," being a list of reference sources used, and "Notes," in-line citations to specific references & sections of references that support a fact in the text. The "References" section should be expanded into a better Bibliography by extracting a list from the text sources cited in the Notes section. A "Further Reading" section might also be useful, but we'd need some experts to help with the list.--Paul 15:06, 24 September 2006 (UTC)

casus belli

The wording in that sidebox for casus belli was a bit strange, it said "popular Hungarian threat to Soviet influence". I changed "threat" to "opposition"...isn't that a bit more accurate/less confusing?K. Lastochka 14:27, 24 September 2006 (UTC)

Since casus belli is defined as: "an event or action that justifies or allegedly justifies a war or conflict" (Websters), it is necessary to decide first, who started the "war or conflict" (my take is the Soviets), and second, to come up with a generally accepted description of the proximate event that precipitated the shooting. How about "Popular Hungarian uprising posing threat to Soviet hegmony"?--Paul 18:30, 24 September 2006 (UTC)
I would word it "popular resentment to the government and state police (ÁVH), and secondarily to Soviet occupation". Remember that some Soviet units were effectively co-opted by the revolutionaries in the first days, whereas the government and ÁVH were the obvious first targets of the crowd, and no mercy was given either way. You may say that in a very general sense that the Soviets started it if you entertain causes going back 6 or more years prior, but the actual fighting was provoked either by the large unarmed crowd demonstrating (view A) or the ÁVH shooting into it with automatic weapons (view B). (Astonishingly, people still debate this) However it is clear that the Soviets did not wish this revolution to occur, and knew from the beginning that it would be very messy business to extricate themselves from it. Nobody excuses the Soviets, not even they themselves, but its clear that they were not *directly* provoking the start of this revolution. Istvan 19:21, 24 September 2006 (UTC)

Thinking about it again, "popular resentment" also existed long before Oct 23, 1956 so it does not fit the strict definition of casus belli. The ÁVH shooting into the crowd of demonstrators and onlookers was certainly the first link in the chain of violence, and was certainly provocation. As for "result", one cant really call it a soviet victory, as if it were a contest between nations. The revolution was crushed ("Failed") Istvan 06:46, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

clean slate for discussion!

As we attempt to drastically improve this article, it was suggested that we move all previous discussion to an archive and start with a clean slate. I have done that, the link to /Archive 1 should be visible above. K. Lastochka 17:54, 24 September 2006 (UTC)

Prelude to the Uprising

The Prelude section is a little clunky--we should clean up the narrative a little, make it flow more logically into "Revolution Begins". I still think we should put in more about Gomulka...K. Lastochka 22:55, 24 September 2006 (UTC)


Lead Article

“On October 23, 1956 a student march supporting liberalization of social and economic policies attracted hundreds of thousands of Hungarians.”

  • The marchers were not supporting ... , they were demanding changes.
Its doubtful they realised at that point that they had any chance of being taken seriously.
  • The figure “hundreds of thousands“ is questionable; the population of Budapest in 1956, was something over 1 million, but definitely well below 2 million. “Hundreds of thousands” implies at least two-hundred-thousands or more; in turn, this implies that about one in five of Budapest’s population had joined the marchers. This is highly improbable and unlike to have been the case.
100,000 seems an oft-repeated number, and this is probably not inconceivable for 1950's Budapest on a nice autumn evening before everyone had a TV that you could draw a crowd pretty quickly (you couldnt get a crowd that big that fast today)

“Participants presenting their demands were attacked by security forces, and soon violently rose up against the government.”

  • This sentence is clumsy. A student delegation that was attempting to persuade the state broadcasting authorities to broadcast to the nation their fourteen-point resolution was admitted into the broadcasting house and then detained there against their will. In the ensuing protest for their release, the state security forces inside the broadcasting house opened fire on the unarmed crowd on the street outside. This was the spark that ignited the powder keg and set the stage for the violence and the armed conflict that followed. It was a case of unarmed demonstrators seeking the release of detained delegation that were being fired upon. "Were attacked" can mean anything, including non-lethal means.
  • Bringing into the story a reference to the ‘fourteen points’, the detention of the student delegation, and the subsequent firing on unarmed crowd outside the broadcasting station is as relevant to this Hungarian uprising as the storming of the Winter Palace is to the October 1917 Russian Revolution, perhaps even more so.

“Within days, millions of Hungarians were participating in or supporting the revolt.”

  • The above sentence needs tightening up. We can only surmise that millions probably supported the ideas expressed in the fourteen points, but it is not at all clear, or known, and probably never will be, how many actually participated in, or supported, the uprising. We had better not try to quantify the unquantifiable - cut out the 'millions'.
"Millions" - i.e. at least 2,000,000 or ca. 20% of the population - must have at least supported the revolution - it is inconceivable that it could have gotten as far as it did, and as wide as it did without broad popular support (defined as general agreement). How about "Within days, millions of Hungarians were either actively or passively supporting the revolution" (better than "millions of Hungarians were revolting")(*which* millions?)
Hegedus: "Yuri tavarish, de Hungarians are Revolting!"
Andropov: "No kidding! dey stink on ice!" (apologies to Mel Brooks)

“On the night of October 23 and subsequent days the Hungarian State Protection Authority (ÁVH) shot protestors. In comparison, Soviet troops stationed in Hungary generally attempted to keep order.”

  • Sure, the security police did fire on demonstrators but after the events at the radio station it was no longer a one-sided affair; the demonstrators were shooting back with arms seized from the police and with arms handed out by Hungarian soldiers sympathizing with the demonstrators. In the given context, it is a bit simplistic just to say that "On the night of October 23 and subsequent days the Hungarian State Protection Authority (ÁVH) shot protestors."
very true, The ÁVH were very soon fighting to save their skins, throwing civilian clothes over their uniforms, trying to ferry arms to each other via ambulance, trying to dissappear.
  • The sentence ‘In comparison, Soviet troops stationed in Hungary generally attempted to keep order.' must rank as the mother of all weasel definition on wikipedia. Sure enough, they were there to keep order ? the communist order of a regime subservient to the Soviet Union. I cannot see just what is being compared with what by saying "in comparison", or what this sentence means? Were the Russians just trying to mediate between the Hungarian Security Forces and the demonstrators? Surely not! The Soviet forces on the streets and boulevards of Budapest in October 1956, were there to suppress the protests which the Hungarian security forces were clearly unable to cope with. Why weasel?
Some Soviet units (this is true) fought *alongside* the protesters in the very beginning. There was no doubt the first target of the crowd's wrath was the ÁVH. The ÁVH were the first to break the peace and there are many reports of soviet guns being turned against the ÁVH on the first evening.

“Armed resistance by insurgents, and the collapse of the government of Erno Gero, caused a ceasefire between Soviet troops and insurgents by November 1.”

  • I don't think this was an “Erno Gero” government. I think the Prime Minister (Miniszterelnök) was András Hegedus. Gero was First Secretary of the Party.
  • I cannot see how the “collapse of the government of Erno Gero”, can be slated as having caused a cease-fire. It would perhaps be better to say that the rapid ministerial changes in government facilitated a cessation of armed conflict between the Hungarian Freedom Fighters and the Soviet forces. (This probably suited both sides, albeit for vastly different reasons.)
to this day its not clear who exactly was in charge during the first days of the revolution, only that Nagy Imre was left holding the bag. There are many accounts that the first days of November almost resembled normalcy in Budapest. Perhaps the statement must be redacted.

“The revolt achieved control over the Hungarian Communist Party”

  • This is incorrect. In 1956 there was no such thing as a Hungarian Communist Party. The one and only party was the Hungarian Worker’s Party, which was formed in 1948 by the merger of two parties - Social Democrats and the Hungarian Communists.

“Executions of pro-Soviet communists, and ÁVH members started, especially by ultra-nationalist groups.”

  • More care is needed with the phrasing of this sentence. execution is defined as carrying out a sentences of death. (Concise Oxford Dict., IX ed.). I don’t believe that during the 11 days of the uprising there were many, if any, formal trials of communists, in the legal sense of the word, to hand down any death sentences. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that supporters of the communist regime who put up armed resistance were, given the opportunity, murdered or lynched.
...and imprisoned, which was far more common though less dramatic.

“With the NATO allies engaged in the Suez Crisis …”

  • This reference to NATO does not at all fit into this part of the article. It implies that had England and France not been involved in the Suez affair, NATO might perhaps have intervened in Hungary. This is pure speculation and serves no purpose in the article. In any case, it wasn’t the “NATO allies” that were engaged in Suez but Great Britain, France and Israel. There were 13 NATO members, including the US and West Germany, who were NOT involved in the Suez affair.
The west behaved shamefully in not responding to Hungary's brave actions - Suez is probably more excuse than reason (there are a dozen other excuses). The point must be explored and developed.

“Nominally invited by Kádár's "Revolutionary Worker-Peasant Government”

  • I have changed my mind about what I have said earlier re. “Russians attempting to keep order” being the mother of all weasel definitions. The use of the phrase nominally invited is as blatant a weasel-fudge as one can possibly imagine. It is probably the number one weasel definition on wiki, on the internet, in the world, in the solar system and perhaps the entire known universe. Is it at all credible to imply that the Soviet invasion was the outcome of an invitation from Kádár, and that it would not have taken place without it? The Soviets were moving tank divisions and motorized infantry into Hungary days before Kádár and Münnich defected from the Nagy government and days before there was such a thing as a “Revolutionary Worker-Peasant Government”. Is it at all credible to suggest that it would have been possible for the Russians to cope with the logistics of moving several fresh divisions into Hungary in the space of the few hours that had elapsed between Kádár’s participation in a ministerial meeting with Nagy and others in Budapest on November 3, and his (Kádár’s) subsequent reappearance the following day, November 4, in Szolnok - a strategic military hub of the invading Soviets - for him to proclaim that the Soviet forces were invading Hungary at the ‘invitation’ of a new Revolutionary Worker-Peasant Government, which didn't even exist a day earlier?

This phrase alone is sufficient grounds to mark this article with a ‘weasel’ tag at the top. So in the current article improvement drive let’s try and get rid of this and all the other weasel words. Who needs them?

its not so much the phrase that's weasly as the act, hence the phrase is accurate. The Kádár invitation is of course a fig leaf excuse orchestrated to attempt some perverse legitimacy to this long-planned intervention. "Nominal invitation" is a mild but accurate description from which a careful reader should infer the illegitimacy of the act itself.

More to follow (time permitting). Bardwell 23:55, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

Wow, excellent and very thorough observations!! Will be a big help! Thank you very much! K. Lastochka 23:58, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

Comments on the points above by Bardwell:

  • The phrase "nominally invited" is not a weasel phrase. It is an exact description of the charade that the Soviet Presidium set up to justify their second intervention. The discussion on the October 31 Presidium meeting, referenced in the article, outlines the justifications that the Soviets felt they needed to legitimize their attack. Obviously, the reason for the attack wasn't the Kadar request. But then "nominally" means "in name only". Ryanjo 02:31, 27 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Bringing into the story a reference to the ‘fourteen points’, the detention of the student delegation, and the subsequent firing on unarmed crowd outside the broadcasting station is as relevant to this Hungarian uprising as the storming of the Winter Palace is to the October 1917 Russian Revolution, perhaps even more so. I think that this is mentioned as the flash point of October 23rd in the third paragraph of the "Revolution begins - October 23" section. The student demands are referenced in the "Social unrest" subsection of the "Prelude" section, and a footnote links to the website with an English translation of the demands. The text could certainly be added to, but it is there.
  • The sentence ‘In comparison, Soviet troops stationed in Hungary generally attempted to keep order.' must rank as the mother of all weasel definition on wikipedia. I agree that this statement is not exactly correct, but it deserves clarification, not vilification. On October 23-27, Soviet forces in Budapest attacked unarmed (and armed) demonstrators, and generally acted to support the AVH. In other areas, Soviet commanders negotiated with workers' councils to maintain order. This is based on the 1957 UN report, which was assembled as much as possible from eyewitnesses. (See the report under the References, paragraph 167 & 168 on pages 52-53).
  • The figure “hundreds of thousands“ is questionable; the population of Budapest in 1956, was something over 1 million, but definitely well below 2 million. “Hundreds of thousands” implies at least two-hundred-thousands or more; in turn, this implies that about one in five of Budapest’s population had joined the marchers. This is highly improbable and unlike to have been the case. The number of 200,000-300,000 again is derived from the 1957 UN report (paragraph 54, page 19). I don't know whether other source information estimates a lower figure, but it is not enough to remove this estimate unless other sources are available to contradict it. If another reference is found, a second footnote could then be placed and text added: "although other sources report the crowd only numbered xxxxxx"
  • Is it at all credible to suggest that it would have been possible for the Russians to cope with the logistics of moving several fresh divisions into Hungary in the space of the few hours that had elapsed between Kádár’s participation in a ministerial meeting with Nagy and others in Budapest on November 3, and his (Kádár’s) subsequent reappearance the following day, November 4, in Szolnok - a strategic military hub of the invading Soviets - for him to proclaim that the Soviet forces were invading Hungary at the ‘invitation’ of a new Revolutionary Worker-Peasant Government, which didn't even exist a day earlier? I added a clarification that Kadar was involved in plotting with the Soviets earlier. Again, I refer to the UN report, para 77-78, pages 26-27, "According to witnesses, Mr. Kadar was in Moscow in early November" and that he was in contact with the Soviet embassy while still a member of the Nagy government. Quoting the article under "Soviet political reaction" section: "With this combination of political and foreign policy considerations, the Presidium decided to break the de-facto ceasefire and eliminate the Hungarian revolution. The plan was to declare a "Provisional Revolutionary Government" under János Kádár, who would appeal for Soviet assistance to restore order." As far as Soviet reinforcements moving, the article states under "Soviet political reaction" (final paragraph): "At a Cabinet meeting on 1 November, Imre Nagy received reports that major Soviet forces had entered Hungary from the east and were moving towards Budapest. Nagy sought and received assurances from Yuri Andropov, then Soviet ambassador to Hungary, that the Soviet Union would not violently crush the revolution, although Andropov knew otherwise." and later, under "Revolution crushed..." (second paragraph): "The second Soviet intervention in Hungary, codenamed "Operation Whirlwind", was launched by Marshall Ivan Konev on 1 November by redeployment of Soviet troops." So, no, it wasn't credible to propose that Kadar and the Soviets hatched the second invasion and overthrow of the Nagy government in a few hours, but then the article doesn't really say that. Ryanjo 03:46, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

I've just tried rephrasing that whole "nominally invited by Kádár" bit, see if it works OK...K. Lastochka 18:10, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

Very effective edits, good work. Ryanjo 19:00, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

Thanks...just trying to do what little I can. :) K. Lastochka 19:26, 27 September 2006 (UTC)


Some brief observations re Infobox:

  • It would be nice if the infobox image was more illustrative of REVOLUTION! (i.e. The toppling of the Stalin statue, or even just what was left of it - his boots; or crowd scenes, or fighting, etc.) I know this is difficult because of copyright restrictions, but perhaps not impossible.
  • Under Casus belli it might be more appropriate to say 'Soviet domination' instead of 'Soviet influence'.
  • Under combatants it would perhaps be appropriate to substitute 'Hungarian State Security Police' for ÁVH (the acronym is meaningless to a first-time reader).

  • More importantly perhaps, the combatants on the Hungarian side should be amended to 'ad hoc local Hungarian militias'. (For the first few days of the conflict the Hungarian Government was on the Soviet side, definitely not on the rebels' side. It was only in the later stages that the Government was definitely not on the Soviet side.)
  • The commander of the Soviet forces was Marshal Ivan S. Konev, not Andropov. (Andropov was the Soviet ambassador to Hungary.)
  • The Hungarian side did not really have commanders. I know that many sources name Maleter and Kiraly but neither can be described as such. Although Maleter had played a part, there was no coherent force for him to command, there was no command structure, there were no means to convey commands other than by broadcasting on the public radio, and there were no subordinates to receive and transmit commands. General Kiraly's role, a Staff appointment, would have been even more limited. The Hungarian Army disintegrated; part of it joined the rebels, part of it joined newly-formed ad hoc National Guard unit - some of which were intermixed with the rebels - and most of the army just vanished, leaving behind nothing to command. Sure, at some stage of the conflict, Maleter and Kiraly were put in position of command but they were in no position to command anyone fighting the Soviet Army. As for Pongratz and Dudas, they were leaders only of their respective small groups of fighters.
If leaving this panel blank (i.e. Commanders) has no appeal, perhaps one should describe them as 'Various Group Leaders of ad hoc militias, fighting independently of each other'. This would also add emphasis to how unequally were the two sides matched.

Bardwell 21:05, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

Good suggestions. I've made the changes (except for the image).--Paul 22:31, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

About the image, there are lots of great pics on but I can't tell if they're public domain or not...K. Lastochka 17:12, 29 September 2006 (UTC)

At the bottom of the Home page of the site it states "Copyright (c) 2005 - 2006. The American Hungarian Federation(tm). All rights reserved". If you identify a picture you want to try to use, you can send them an email asking to use the photo. I have used this text with some success:
Dear -----,
I am one of the many volunteer editors of Wikipedia (, a web-based collaborative encyclopedia. Wikipedia now has over 1 million reference articles freely available on-line.
I respectfully request your assistance to obtain a photo of the -----, and for permission to use this as Wikipedia content. The immediate use of this image would be to illustrate a topic that I am editing on Wikipedia, regarding the 1956 Hungarian Revolution <>.
Wikipedia is multilingual open-content encyclopedia that strives for complete and reliable content. Volunteers from around the world collaboratively create content, but Wikipedia depends upon photos, such as yours, to clearly illustrate that content.
However, for Wikipedia to use your material, you must agree to the GNU Free Documentation License (often referred to as the GNU-FDL, or GFDL). In essence, the GFDL allows you to retain the copyright and authorship of your work, but grants permission for others to use, copy, and share your materials freely, and even potentially use them commercially, so long as they do not try to claim the copyright themselves, or try to prevent others from using or copying them freely (e.g., "share-alike"). You can read the complete license at < of the GFDL>.
If you grant permission for use, we will credit your organization for your work, state that it is used with your permission, and provide a link back to your website. Wikipedia is becoming a frequent on-line reference for students, researchers, and media outlets worldwide, so this may enhance recognition of the American Hungarian Federation.
I sincerely appreciate your consideration of this matter. Please advise your decision on this request by email.
Good luck Ryanjo 22:56, 29 September 2006 (UTC)

OK, I just e-mailed them, hope we hear back soon. Many thanks for the text Ryanjo! :) K. Lastochka 13:49, 30 September 2006 (UTC)

Occupation and repression

The reference to "... as required by their membership in the Warsaw Pact." at the end of the 1st para. is, I belive, unsupportable. Article 4 of the treaty states:

"In the event of armed attack in Europe on one or more of the Parties to the Treaty by any state or group of states, [my emphasis].

Furthermore, Article 8:

"The Contracting Parties declare that they will act in a spirit of friendship and cooperation with a view to further developing and fostering economic and cultural intercourse with one another, each adhering to the principle of respect for the independence and sovereignty of the others and non-interference in their internal affairs. [My emphasis]

I have taken the opportunity to elaborate some of the background. Bardwell 16:19, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

- - - -

Some issues in the 03:34, October 4, 2006, revision that need sorting

  • in accordance with the terms of the Potsdam Agreement, Hungary was placed under the control of the Allied Control Commission (ACC). The ACC was chaired by the Soviet Union, but this is not synonymous with saying that "Hungary became part of the Soviet sphere of influence under the Potsdam Agreement. "
  • The phrase " …as required by their membership in the Warsaw Pact" is incorrect. The Pact does not require the stationing of Soviet troops in Hungary. (I have quoted chapter and verse in my 16:19, 2 October 2006 comment.)
  • The coalition government was not "chosen" by the electorate, it was imposed upon it.
  • The sixteen-point student manifesto contained 14 demands followed by 2 statements. For the sake of accuracy this should not be referred to as 16 demands; "16 points", "14 demands", "16- point manifesto" or "a manifesto with 16 points containing 14 key demands" are possible alternatives. Bardwell 10:55, 4 October 2006 (UTC)

Early October or October 20?

The article says: "On 23 October, the Soviet Union activated contingency plans which had existed since early October 1956 for a police action intervention into Hungary's internal situation. [13]". [13] says: "...there is evidence that steps were being taken by the Soviet authorities from 20-22 October...". I would describe 20-22 October as late October, so should it be early or late October? Art LaPella 06:17, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

I removed the time reference. Ryanjo 11:52, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

Intro Revamp

The following text is paragraphs 2-4 of the previously bloated intro section. It contains very valid material which is mostly repeated later in the article. Perhaps the group may mine this text for useful bits to be placed back into the body of the article. Istvan 22:57, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

On 23 October 1956 a student march demanding liberalization of social and economic policies attracted thousands of Hungarians. The students had drawn up a list of sixteen points, which they attempted to persuade state broadcasting authorities to let them read on the air.[1] They were admitted into the broadcasting station but, once inside, were forcibly detained and not permitted to broadcast their petition. In the ensuing protest for the students' release, the state security forces inside the broadcasting house opened fire on the unarmed crowd on the street outside.
Within days, large numbers of Hungarians were participating in or supporting the revolt. The attack on the protesters on the night of 23 October had proved the spark that ignited violent conflict between the Hungarian State Protection Authority (ÁVH) and the revolutionaries. Soviet troops stationed in Hungary supported the (ÁVH) in trying to supress the uprising. The revolt achieved control over the ruling Hungarian Workers' Party, most social institutions and a large amount of territory. The participants began to implement their own policies, re-establishing multiparty rule and ousting the previous hard-line government ministers. Workers' councils established control over factories and mines, and assumed functions previously reserved for communist party bureaucrats. Pro-Soviet communists and ÁVH members were attacked and often killed, especially by nationalist groups. The Hungarian Workers' Party, now called the Hungarian Socialist Workers' Party, made Imre Nagy Prime Minister. A ceasefire was negotiated with Soviet forces in Hungary by 28 October. Workers' councils began to replace communist party bureaucrats—rejecting Soviet economic controls—and Nagy declared his intention to withdraw Hungary from the Warsaw Pact and allow a multiparty political system.
Alarmed by these developments, the Presidium of the Soviet Communist Party made plans for intervention, and plotted with János Kádár to form a new pro-Warsaw Pact government which was announced on 3 November. On the night of 4 November the Soviet army intervened a second time, supposedly invited by Kádár's "Revolutionary Worker-Peasant Government." The Soviet forces unleashed an artillery barrage and airstrikes in a multi-divisional offensive against Budapest, crushing the uprising by 10 November. In the wake of the Soviet invasion, mass arrests of dissidents began, and around 200,000 Hungarians fled to Austria. By January 1957 Kádár and the Soviets had supressed all opposition.

Istvan: I like your lead paragraph better than what we had before, but it would seem that Featured Articles typically have at least 2 or 3 paragraphs of a few sentences each (I looked at the past few FAs on the Wikipedia Main Page, and also some past historical FAs from Wikipedia:Featured articles. This was also a recommendation of the peer reviewer. So it might be prudent to pare down the old lead text more tightly, rather than eliminating it. Ryanjo 14:29, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

I agree with Istvan that what we had before was bloated, but also with Ryanjo that it's a little anemic now. I'll see if I can't beef it up a the way guys, I'm sorry if I haven't been doing much for the article lately, I'm just swamped w/ studies.....but will try to do what I can. :( K. Lastochka 20:37, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

Oh, nevermind, but everything said in the previous intro is stated in the actual body of the article. We don't want to be redundant, that's just bad writing. Maybe I will just change it a bit to specify that the sitting govt. was Soviet-backed...K. Lastochka 20:41, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

OK, I just asked Kirill, our peer reviewer, and he said that the intro should be a concise but detailed summary of what is stated in the full body of the article--something that can be read and understood by itself by people who don't want to take the time to read the whole thing. So it looks like a polished-up version of what Istvan deleted :) is the way to go. Ryanjo, I'll e-mail the AHF about the pictures tomorrow...K. Lastochka 03:47, 30 September 2006 (UTC)

And I have now taken it upon myself to brazenly re-insert a modified version of our previous intro, as it seemed more in keeping with Kirill's recommendation. Sorry Istvan, no offense... :) K. Lastochka 03:50, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

none taken - my removing it to "talk" was like "putting it in the shop". It needs to be a clear summmary without details. I will also give it a go.Istvan 07:20, 2 October 2006 (UTC)
I think it is still slightly long. Maybe we can give less mean there are people who won't read the whole article?! Ryanjo 12:19, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

I know, I'm scandalized that people won't read the whole thing too! But that's what Kirill said, and he knows whereof he speaks. Anyway, I wasn't sure what bits to pare down, too attached to the whole story I guess, maybe someone else can take a whack at it. :) K. Lastochka 13:57, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

I have done some editing of the lead paragraphs, trying to generalize what happened, leaving the names and details to the sections below. The article has really been improved by all the edits by many contributors. A few photos and some further tightening up--who knows? Ryanjo 20:32, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

Excellent work on the intro, many thanks! I'm still waiting to hear from the AHF about those photos I found--if we can get permission to use those it will be terrific, there were some really great images there. Agree that the article is vastly improved! Good work everybody, and here we come, Oct. 23!! K. Lastochka 22:04, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

I would delete/reposition the final sentence in the intro which at present reads:
"The nature of the Soviet military intervention served to turn a large number of western Marxists away from Soviet-style Communism, as well as firmly cementing Soviet control over Eastern Europe."
Chronologically the sentence belongs to a later period, perhaps section 5.2 (November 10 onwards/International) If reinserted into 5.2 perhaps it should be rephrased:
The brutality of the Soviet intervention provoked a large number of prominent communists in the West to turn away from Soviet-style Communism.
Bardwell 14:10, 2 October 2006 (UTC)
  • ppm in his FAC comments notes that Hungary doesn't appear until the second paragraph, and that "dictatorship" is needlessly accusatory. How does the following seem as a replacement first sentence?

    The Hungarian Revolution of 1956 (October 23November 10) was a spontaneous nationwide revolt against the totalitarian communist government of Hungary and its Soviet imposed policies.

  • sigh*...we probably shouldn't use the T-word...might be "sensationalist"...otherwise I can see no potential problems. K. Lastochka 02:24, 13 October 2006 (UTC)
One of opposing voters wrote "I think "totalitarian government" would be more accurate. --Ghirla -????- 06:40, 12 October 2006 (UTC)", so I think totalitarian would be fine. Ryanjo 03:08, 13 October 2006 (UTC)

Well if even Ghirla supported it then I guess it's fine...:) the T-word has been re-inserted. K. Lastochka 03:14, 13 October 2006 (UTC)


Since the uprising wasn't put down until November 10, why is the duration listed as October 23 - November 4? How does the standard literature refer to the timeframe?--Paul 02:02, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

This is the usual period given for the revolt. Referring to the 1957 UN report (page 26): several events make 4 November the "end" of the revolution: Soviet forces, attacking on 3 November, effectively were in control of Budapest by 4 November, except for areas such as Csepel and other pockets, which held out to 9-11 November. Imre Nagy fled the government offices to the Yugoslavian embassy late on 4 November, effectively ending the Nagy government. Ryanjo 13:52, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

József Dudás

I noticed that in one of the edits, a reference to József Dudás was removed. His name is commonly mentioned in references about this period. Since we are trying to be comprehensive, would it not be approriate to replace his name as a wikilink in the sentence "Pro-Soviet communists, and ÁVH members were attacked or murdered."? This way, if the Dudas article on Wikipedia is improved, it would provide more detail on the controversies surrounding his actions. Alternatively, we could put him in a restored "See also" section, but this section has already been eliminated some time ago in favor of wikilinks within the article. Ryanjo 13:17, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

The paucity of info in the József Dudás article was one reason I thought it was okay to cut. But it does sound like he should be mentioned somehow. BTW, what do you suppose this sentance from his article means? He was however, subsequently pursued by Students and Workers Councils in his resistance against the Soviet invasion. --Paul 14:24, 28 September 2006 (UTC)
Never mind about that sentence. It isn't there any more. I've restored Dundas to the article, just about where he was, but he isn't called an ultra-nationalist anymore (after all, he was from Romania) and he isn't single handedly blamed for murdering Soviet collaborators.--Paul 20:10, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

Soviet political reaction

This: Soviet political reaction, is the next big piece of work needed. I think it is needlessly dense and pedantic. I won't have the free time to work on it any time soon, but I hope someone can attack it.--Paul 20:10, 28 September 2006 (UTC)

I realize that this is a long section, but it is essential to clearly exhibit the role of the Politburo in crushing the revolution, as well as their motivations and methods. There is really no other place in Wikipedia more appropriate for this information, and given the newly available transcripts of the Politburo's minutes, this section goes a long way in correcting earlier overly simple perceptions of why the the Soviets crushed the revolution. I hope that anyone seeking to edit this section will keep that in mind. Ryanjo 13:18, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Pal Maleter

Can others contribute more to the Pal Maleter article please (and start up articles on the other two reburied with him and Imre Nagy)? Jackiespeel 21:34, 30 September 2006 (UTC)

Revisionism and false moral equivalence

An editor has added the following text (bold)...

Social, economic and political trends within Hungary provided an explosive mix in the years before the uprising. After World War II, the Soviet military occupied Hungary, along with the rest of Eastern Europe, and imposed a Soviet-style Communist form of government operated by loyal local Communists, according to the terms of the Potsdam Agreement with the western Allies. After their experience with Germany in WWII, and with the ongoing installation of western-style capitalist governments by the United States in Western Europe, the Soviets saw this as necessary to create a buffer between the USSR and Western Europe.

...adding the following edit comment: NPOV means *all* POVs, not just the ones you like. It's true that the USSR installed Communist gov'ts in the East, just as the US installed capitalist gov'ts in the West.

The editor is using the technique of arguing moral equivalence to excuse the aggressive behavior of Stalin after the end of the war. No one ever gave a speech about an Iron Curtain descending across Europe as the U.S. installed puppet governments and executed or drove out intellectuals and the middle class. The U.S. didn't build fortified borders to keep people in Western Europe from fleeing to the socialist paradise. And, the U.S. didn't "install" any "capitalist" governments in any European countries. Further, the Potsdam Agreement didn't give the Soviets a blank check to carry out purges or to install dictatorships of their choice. Both of these claims are factually incorrect, and argue a moral equivalency where there was absolutely none.

The same editor has also added this text (bold)...

Economic collapse and low standards of living, caused by the devastation of the country during World War II and the subsequent radical reorganization of the economy under the Soviet model, provoked working class discontent, which initially played out in soccer riots.

... with this edit comment: The WWII destruction was undeniably a big factor in the economic performance (in addition to the reorganization, which certainly contributed.

This isn't as blatant as the first edit, but it is definitely misleading. There are clear references in the article to the fact that per capita GDP in Hungary was at 90% of 1938 level in 1949 just before the communist complete takeover, and by 1953 it had fallen to 66% (a thirty percent decline). By 1956 when the Hungarians were willing to stand in streets throwing Molotov cocktails at Russian tanks, the German economic miracle was well underway and Germany suffered far more war devastation than did Hungary. Inserting language referring to WWII destruction in a paragraph discussing the economic situation in Hungary in 1956 (eleven years after the end of the war) is again excusing the Soviets and the Hungarian Communists and is obfuscating the truth.--Paul 00:50, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

I agree that the present version (after edits by several persons) is less relevant to the situation in Hungary immediately before the revolt than the original, which was:
Social, economic and political trends within Hungary provided an explosive mix in the years before the uprising. Economic collapse and low standards of living, caused by the reorganization of the economy under the Soviet model, provoked working class discontent, which initally played out in soccer riots. Peasants were unhappy with land policies, which collectivized agriculture and fixed prices to favor the state. Journalists and authors were upset with their working conditions, and took control of their trade union. Students were upset with academic conditions and University entrance criteria and established independent student unions. Nikita Khrushchev's "secret" speech on the Soviet system under Stalin caused much debate within the elite of the Hungarian Communist Party, and there was disagreement between its reformist and Stalinist wings. While the party was preoccupied and blinded by these leadership debates, discontent boiled over and the population took action.
Why don't we revert to the prior version, and leave out the "blame game" about the US & USSR? Ryanjo 01:05, 1 October 2006 (UTC)


There's a good pic of some revolutionaries climbing all over a Russian tank on the Magyar article ( Maybe we can use that one? K. Lastochka 15:52, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

I think the picture you are referring to, with images of kids and happy-looking passers-by in a celebratory mood inspecting a disabled tank, was probably taken during the cease-fire period after the first round of fighting. It would do nicely in the section dealing with the interval between the two periods of fighting, i.e. October 29 to November 3. Bardwell 17:03, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

Right, sorry, didn't look closely enough...they didn't look all that celebratory to me. K. Lastochka 17:13, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

It was up as lead photo before, but taken down here:
  1. (cur) (last) 2006-06-27T17:51:07 Gmaxwell (Talk | contribs) (Remove image listed on WP:PUI)

I have not been able to verify its current status. Im all for using it - its certainly illustrative. Istvan 17:18, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

"worst documented hyperinflation in history"

I read this phrase in the Economic Stagnation section: "The Hungarian currency, the pengo, experienced substantial depreciation, as post-war Hungary suffered the worst documented hyperinflation in history." I thought that it was very interesting, so I checked out the source link at To my dismay I couldn't find a single reference to the above claim. This article seems to be taken care of, so I don't want to interfere, especially when this claim could still be true, so I'm leaving this message so that someone can look this over. marnues 14:36, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

The "worst documented hyperinflation" is mentioned but not elaborated upon in this timeline ( I found...the claim seems to be true. Good close scrutiny for possible article goofs though, much appreciated. :) K. Lastochka 14:42, 2 October 2006 (UTC)


I have done a fairly extensive copyedit, mainly removing repetitive and unnecessary wikification and some POV and/or irrelevant passages. But major surgery is required on the section describing events between 1945 and 1956, which is far more detailed than the article requires. Adam 06:45, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Agree. The recent edits in the "Occupation and repression" subsection in "Prelude" are much more detailed than necessary--more appropriate to a history of Hungary at that time--and the prose is far too dramatic. I have reverted the entire section. Ryanjo 02:34, 4 October 2006 (UTC)


I have found some low resoulution stills from American contemporary newsreels that are in the public domain here:

I think they can be used, though they have a low resolution and Buyoutfootage written on them, but as the site claims they only host public domain material, we could try finding either the original, or modifying these (an ugly solution), and putting them up.

I also asked the '56-os Intézet (Historical Intitute for the 1956 Revolution) , but they have a fee of 4000 HUF (~20$) on each picture (though negotiable, still it can't be free :( ). --Dami 15:56, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

I have found some Public Domain newsreels from 56-57 that mention the Hungarian events, and that can be downloaded. I think it would be aproppriate to upload them at commons. These are (mainly the same, as from where the above mentioned pictures come from, but this time the video is downloadable):

--Dami 16:19, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Some of those Buyoutfootage photos might be useable with a lot of Photoshopping. We should keep looking, but good work so far. I'm still waiting to hear back from the AHF. K. Lastochka 19:08, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Look at the actual videos, there is a Thumbnails link at each of them, taken at one minute intervals from the video, counting on dumb luck hopefully we should find one about the revolution, and also I'm thinking about uploading the actual videos to commons, I'm just not yet familiar with their policies (do they accept any file format, for example, or do I have to convert it [which I won't be able to do :( ] )--Dami 20:58, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

How about this site: [4] they appear to be free to use. Are these the ones you are trying to get? Istvan 05:29, 4 October 2006 (UTC)

Those are the very same. I e-mailed them again last night....still no reply. I hope we can get them, they'd be great! K. Lastochka 13:57, 4 October 2006 (UTC)

Suggestion for an illustration for the article: would one of the editors fluent in Hungarian look at the newspaper front pages here? (I think the first front page reports Nagy's neutrality annoncement.) The Terms of Use for the site (Flickr) state: "The Flickr service makes it possible to post images hosted on Flickr to outside websites. This use is accepted (and even encouraged!). However, pages on other websites which display images hosted on must provide a link back to Flickr from each photo to its photo page on Flickr." Ryanjo 12:03, 7 October 2006 (UTC)
You are right about the headline text, but there are problems with the picture's copyright, and there are technical difficulties. We cannot "post" flickr images on wiki (displaying images not on a wikimedia server), we could upload them to enwiki under a fair use rationale (though that would constitute as "hosting" not "posting", but its doable under fair use). They couldn't be uploaded to commons as they are marked as copyrighted. I'll try to gain permission from Népszava...--Dami 12:35, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

I uploaded the Time man of the year cover, though not commons... as its fair use

Excellent! I added the cover image to the International reaction subsection under October 24-November 4. I realize that the date of the magazine is January, but I thought that this was the period that the events occurred that Time is recognizing. Other thoughts? Ryanjo 14:08, 7 October 2006 (UTC)
I think its fine in the International Reaction section, maybe an image description would be appropriate. Also, here is the artcile that goes with the picture:,9171,808898,00.html --Dami 14:28, 7 October 2006 (UTC)
I put in a caption with an in-line reference to the Time article. Ryanjo 16:18, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

The Kruschev edition the next year --Dami 13:47, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Thanks! I posted on the Talk:Nikita Khrushchev discussion page, in case editors there would use the image. Ryanjo 14:29, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Flickr Népszava Cover

Hi! I sent an e-mail to the photographer of the Népszava Cover Collection on Flickr, and he said, its ok to show his images with the following line: "Collection from Karoly Szabo about 200 newspaper pages. <a href=""></a>". If you need the full text of the e-mail, let me know, and feel free to upload his images, that you feel would improve the article. (Also please let me know if you do). Also if you need help in understanding the headlines, let me know. I also asked him to release them under a CC licence but he didn't agree to it yet, as he is unfamiliar with it, so maybe later we can put the pictures up on commons. --Dami 14:59, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

The images are now CC-by-sa-2.0 . I'll start uploading them to commons. If you upload a picture from the collection, please attribute it to:

Collection from Karoly Szabo about 200 newspaper pages.

--Dami 15:24, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

I uploaded the first one (about Nagy Imre declaring Hungary neutral). I also created a Commons page for all the free images, here : commons:Hungarian Revolution of 1956--Dami 15:44, 7 October 2006 (UTC)


Images about the commemoration, statues etc, can be found here: --Dami 15:55, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Portrait Photos

OK, I put up what was available on the commons - mostly head shots of prominents - by no means enough, but at least a bit more decoration (not necessarily tasteful). There must be some way of getting those 56 photos from the 50th anniversary website, not the 56-os Intézet which wants to charge money for each one. I too have emailed them but as yet have received no answer. They are truly the missing link, the last big hurdle (that we can see so far). If you have any means of trying to tease out copyright info on them, please do - Ive also tried and failed.Istvan 19:01, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

What they said

Although I appreciate the enthusiasm of the editor in adding this, I don't think it adds anything meaningful to the article and it should be removed for two reasons. 1) it doesn't really provide any insight and it bloats an already bloated article, and 2) the people quoted are just celebrities (two politicians and a gangster) and had either nothing or very little to do with the event.--Paul 13:31, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

Agree, they're good quotes and the addition was done with the very best of intentions, but they are unnecessary. I've deleted them, apologies to the well-meaning editor. K. Lastochka 13:50, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

LOL, oh wow, I just looked at the page history, the last ten or so edits were all on the "what they said"--fixing links, typos.....and then I brazenly appear with "deleted superfluous what they said section". I feel like such an ogre! :) But I have the best interest of the article at heart. :) K. Lastochka 13:54, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

Someone had better also delete the request, at the op of this page under the heading of "Article Improvement Drive", for citations! Bardwell 14:22, 5 October 2006 (UTC)
I believe the request for "citations" is a request for notes to references backing up the facts in the article. --Paul 15:05, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

Date Conventions

I changed the dates in the headers from DDMonth to MonthDD ONLY because they read more easily in the Table of Contents (the headings are themselves numbered, and these numbers bump against the dates, e.g. "3 23 October") and not to conform to any specific date convention. I see no reason to alter the dates mentioned in the body of the text. Istvan 03:49, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

Featured Article Candidate

I almost put 56 up for FAC nomination, but decided to wait on: 1. Photos from that Hungarian 56 site - these are very nice and could very much help 2. Cleanup the "prelude" sections 3. Bardwell, I liked the "what they said" quotes and think they should be reinstated with actual photos of the people quoted. Im not a good graphics editor, perhaps someone who is could do this. 4. Re-ranking (review) from someone from the Military History WikiProject - we cant well try for FA if the current ranking is B-class, Its just too easily opposed as such. All in all, we are getting closer. We have already jumped through the AID hoop. The page is actually very well-referenced, and there seems to be a low level of edit squabbles (unlike a few months ago). But we'd better be well dressed before stepping out of the limo Istvan 06:07, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

Yeah, sorry for deleting those quotes....and it doesn't look like I'm EVER going to hear back from those people about the pictures. We should probably look elsewhere. We are getting very close, the article is a hundred times better than it was a month or so ago. :) K. Lastochka 13:24, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

I just asked Kirill if he'd take another look and give us some input. K. Lastochka 13:28, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

I think that the article should again be submitted for Peer Review. That is the easiest way to a number of good editors to comment on the quality. I disagree about "What they said." It doesn't follow the layout for historical articles, the section was completely out of context, and the quotes seclected didn't shed any light on the event. Anyway, another peer review should be next.--Paul 13:56, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

Lastochka, I think they're just being lazy. My understanding from their website (the 56 one) is that the dozen or so featured images are meant to be offered for free use for the 50th anniversary - click on them and they download. Yes, peer review should be next, it doesnt need to wait on the photos or the quotes issue to be resolved, only the article's name issue as this is the only outstanding suggestion remaining from the first review. We should make that change and put it up for MilHist review today. Istvan 16:39, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

If you want to submit as a FAC, the article should also be submitted for Wikipedia:Peer review ASAP. Many of the same folks who prowl the FAC page, comment on the Peer review pages.--Paul 16:49, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

Istvan, I'll take another look at that site, and if I can't see any obvious restrictions, I'll go ahead and use some--if there turn out to be problems we can (*sob*) delete them. About the review, I asked Kirill earlier today for an informal assessment of the current state of the article and he said it's vastly improved, the only problems he sees are the name and the overgrown template at the bottom. (Should we still do another official Peer Review??) K. Lastochka 23:32, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

Oh, I'm so confused! What license tag do I put on an image that apparently HAS no copyright?? K. Lastochka 23:57, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

very nice creating the demands page - I put up the reference for it too. Istvan 00:26, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

I just submitted us for Peer Review....K. Lastochka 16:23, 7 October 2006 (UTC)


How about:

  1. Hungarian Revolution of 1956
  2. Hungarian Revolution (1956)
  3. Hungarian Uprising or Revolt of 1956

I favour 1. - the Hungarian reference is "revolution" (forradalom) and the year is absolutely necessary (there have been several revolutions in Hungary, and reference to this one always includes "56"). The MilHist reviewers insist on changing the name and their assent to A-class or FA status is needed to be FA by 23 Oct. Lets settle this issue today (6 Oct) and put it up for another peer review, requesting it be expedited. Another question - what logistical alterations are required to change the article's name? just a redirect from the old one? Istvan 16:28, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

My vote is for #1. K. Lastochka 23:28, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

I'm in favor of #1 also. Make sure the Redirect is set up from the present title, since this article is number one on Google when searching for for Hungarian Revolution. We must also amend the Wikipedia disambiguation page for Hungarian Revolution. Ryanjo 01:13, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

I just discovered that there is already a page called Hungarian Revolution of 1956, which redirects to this article. Since the page is already created, it is possible to copy and paste the entire article to Hungarian Revolution of 1956, and also this Talk page to Talk:Hungarian Revolution of 1956, which would need to be created. Then this 1956 Hungarian Revolution page could be erased and changed to a Redirect. If there are more votes in favor. Ryanjo 01:24, 7 October 2006 (UTC)
More info on changing a Redirect [5] Ryanjo 01:28, 7 October 2006 (UTC)
No, no, no. Do not cut and paste between pages, that loses history information. Ask an administrator to merge the two pages for you.--Paul 01:28, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Sorry, I agree. How many "yes" votes do we need? Ryanjo 01:32, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Do we really need to vote? Is it that big a decision? My vote is in favor, if it's needed. :)K. Lastochka 01:40, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

No, let's go ahead. How to proceed? Ryanjo 01:53, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

It's done by moving the page. I'll take care of it (hope to God I don't screw this up...) K. Lastochka 02:35, 7 October 2006 (UTC), it wouldn't let me rename it, so I posted a request to the admins. Hope they can do it. K. Lastochka 02:41, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

And they did it! Nice! K. Lastochka 15:40, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Sorry guys for saying this, but this name looks rather odd at the Hungarian Revolution page. Also it seems to me, looking at the below quoted House of Representatives Resolution (1 out of 3 actually, to there is a "1956 Revolution", that I count toward 1956 H. R.) and Google Results ([6] vs [7] , using quotation marks), the original naming (1956 Hungarian Revolution) seems to be the most widely used.
Anyone know why the milhist people wanted a name-change?--Dami 21:41, 11 October 2006 (UTC)


This shouldnt be in the body of the article, but would be a good popup window (in case someone knows how to do it) here is the text of the demands which were read to the crowd on 23 October: Istvan 21:52, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

  1. We demand the immediate evacuation of all Soviet troops, in conformity with the provisions of the Peace Treaty.
  2. We demand the election by secret ballot of all Party members from top to bottom, and of new officers for the lower, middle and upper echelons of the Hungarian Workers Party. These officers shall convene a Party Congress as early as possible in order to elect a Central Committee.
  3. A new Government must be constituted under the direction of Imre Nagy: all criminal leaders of the Stalin-Rákosi era must be immediately dismissed.
  4. We demand public enquiry into the criminal activities of Mihály Farkas and his accomplices. Mátyás Rákosi, who is the person most responsible for crimes of the recent past as well as for our country’s ruin, must be returned to Hungary for trial before a people’s tribunal.
  5. We demand general elections by universal, secret ballot are held throughout the country to elect a new National Assembly, with all political parties participating. We demand that the right of workers to strike be recognised.
  6. We demand revision and re-adjustment of Hungarian-Soviet and Hungarian-Yugoslav relations in the fields of politics, economics and cultural affairs, on a basis of complete political and economic equality, and of non-interference in the internal affairs of one by the other.
  7. We demand the complete reorganisation of Hungary’s economic life under the direction of specialists. The entire economic system, based on a system of planning, must be re-examined in the light of conditions in Hungary and in the vital interest of the Hungarian people.
  8. Our foreign trade agreements and the exact total of reparations that can never be paid must be made public. We demand to be precisely informed of the uranium deposits in our country, on their exploitation and on the concessions to the Russians in this area. We demand that Hungary have the right to sell her uranium freely at world market prices to obtain hard currency.
  9. We demand complete revision of the norms operating in industry and an immediate and radical adjustment of salaries in accordance with the just requirements of workers and intellectuals. We demand a minimum living wage for workers.
  10. We demand that the system of distribution be organised on a new basis and that agricultural products be utilised in rational manner. We demand equality of treatment for individual farms.
  11. We demand reviews by independent tribunals of all political and economic trials as well as the release and rehabilitation of the innocent. We demand the immediate repatriation of prisoners of war (WW2) and of civilian deportees to the Soviet Union, including prisoners sentenced outside Hungary.
  12. We demand complete recognition of freedom of opinion and of expression, of freedom of the press and of radio, as well as the creation of a daily newspaper for the MEFESZ Organisation (Hungarian Federation of University and College Students’ Associations).
  13. We demand that the statue of Stalin, symbol of Stalinist tyranny and political oppression, be removed as quickly as possible and be replaced by a monument in memory of the martyred freedom fighters of 1848-49.
  14. We demand the replacement of emblems foreign to the Hungarian people by the old Hungarian arms of Kossuth. We demand new uniforms for the Army which conform to our national traditions. We demand that March 15th be declared a national holiday and that the October 6th be a day of national mourning on which schools will be closed.
  15. The students of the Technological University of Budapest declare unanimously their solidarity with the workers and students of Warsaw and Poland in their movement towards national independence.
  16. The students of the Technological University of Budapest will organise as rapidly as possible local branches of MEFESZ, and they have decided to convene at Budapest, on Saturday October 27, a Youth Parliament at which all the nation’s youth shall be represented by their delegates.
Comment These are available from a link in the footnotes.--Paul 14:45, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

TOC and Organization

A comment on the Peer review page complains about the dates in the section headings. Here is the current layout:

2 Revolution begins - October 23, 1956
3 October 24 to November 4

3.1 First Soviet intervention
3.2 Hungarian political changes
3.3 Soviet political reaction
3.4 International reaction

4 Revolution crushed - November 4 to November 10

Wouldn't something like the following be better?
2 Hungarian Revolution

2.1 Spark and ignition
2.2 First Soviet intervention
2.3 Eye of the storm
2.3.1 Hungarian political changes
2.3.2 Soviet political reaction
2.3.3 International reaction
2.4 Second Soviet intervention
--Paul 18:24, 8 October 2006 (UTC)
Sure, go ahead, lets see how it looks Istvan 18:33, 8 October 2006 (UTC)
New sections look great! Ryanjo 21:28, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

Maybe I'm wrong here, but is "Eye of the Storm" really encyclopedic style? It sounds a little bit fanciful or something... -- TheMightyQuill 21:58, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

We're Hungarians! Don't expect us to be dispassionate! :) Seriously though, I see what you mean. If anyone can come up with anything better, might as well change it...not a huge problem though. K. Lastochka 23:29, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

Sometimes encyclopedias can be deathly dull. Doesn't "Eye of the storm" correctly describe the period between the 1st & 2nd Soviet interventions? Like the eye of a hurricane. Overall, the new headings work well. Prelude -> Revolution -> Aftermath. --Paul 00:27, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Eye of the storm works well to the informed reader, may be misleading to the casual reader. I see clearly the meaning, as when a hurricaine passes, there is a storm, then calm, then a storm again. This may be lost on a casual reader. Lets give it a think. Istvan 00:48, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Yikes--and "eye of the storm" could also sound like "right in the middle of the biggest chaos" to someone reading quickly. I'll try and think of something better... K. Lastochka 00:57, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Eye of the storm has a well-known and specific meaning, and it fits the time between the First and Second Soviet interventions perfectly. You really have to stretch to assume that someone wouldn't understand it (they certainly would after reading the section) or would misunderstand what it referred to. Istvan understands what it means and explains it perfectly. I suppose we can write for 3rd graders, but I don't see the point. Brain strain and editing time for FAC success would be much better spent fixing the format of the references. (P.S. Peer review editor likes the new headings, but has comments on the text). --Paul 01:18, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

I didn't realize clarifying our language was "writing for 3rd graders." Agree though that it's hardly the most important thing to worry about. K. Lastochka 02:08, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

I didn't mean to suggest it was difficult to understand, but it's a little theatrical. People would understand if you called it "A pause for breath before the next wave crashed" but it's not really appropriate for an encyclopedia. I agree, however, that it's probably not the most important issue to worry about -- TheMightyQuill 05:21, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

"Interlude"--bravo Istvan! :) Can't believe we didn't think of that before. K. Lastochka 21:20, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

Hungarian History?

Thanks to all for the great work on this page. Would it be possible to add the Template:History of Hungary to this page somewhere? -- TheMightyQuill 19:42, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

First, I asked and got no response. Then I was bold and inserted it, only to have it moved without much explanation. This article is an important part of the history of Hungary, so I can't see why the template wouldn't be included. The references section isn't cluttered by the template, so why not leave it there? It looks ugly at the bottom. -- TheMightyQuill 23:37, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

I moved it from References because it is not a reference. I suppose the best place for it would be "See also," but there is no "See also" section in this article, and it would be too long for any normal "See also" section, anyway. I agree with you that it does look ugly at the bottom, but there isn't any other place to put it. It would be less ugly if someone would make a horizontal version. --Paul 23:46, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Ready for FAC?

Absent any objection, I will put up this article for FAC in 6 hours (unless someone wants to do so before then, in which case I am happy too). Speak now or forever hold your peace. Istvan 22:43, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

LET'S DO IT! Éljen a magyar szabadság!! Istvan, you may do the honors...K. Lastochka 23:32, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

Has anyone responded to these two items on the peer review page?
  • Expand all footnotes to full bibliographic entry: example, "US State Department Commemorates the 1956 Hungarian Revolution" is one big blue link.
  • Referencing is uneven: there are still large chunks of text with no inline citations.
It is better & faster to get this stuff out of the way before FAC --Paul 00:13, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Let's do both (FAC & edits) at the same time. We may simply be getting a new suggestion with each new peer review. Ryanjo 01:43, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Note that Sandy is likely to complain about the very same things on the FAC page, as he is very active there, which is precisely why I asked him to take a look at the article in peer review before moving to FAC. Why don't you spend a day or two addressing his concerns? It may gain you a FAC supporter.--Paul 01:57, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
I am trying to find a reference for each paragraph that lacks one. Ryanjo 01:52, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
Regarding references, do you have any of the books listed for further reading? As the MilHist review suggested, a wider range of cites would be good.--Paul 01:57, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
I have briefly looked through the new Charles Gati book, but at the library...they won't loan it out of the reference section because it's less than a month old. I will try to get a few refs with page numbers. Ryanjo 20:19, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
Here is a link to a recent article by Gati: Fifty years later from the Hungarian Quarterly.--Paul 01:35, 13 October 2006 (UTC)

OK, I'll not put it up for another 12 hours (if anyone else wants to put it up before, I wont object). Istvan 05:08, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Hello, everybody, here follows my proposal for a Today's featured article summary. --Hunadam 08:59, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Time's cover on 7 January 1957

The Hungarian Revolution of 1956 (23 Oct - 10 Nov), was a spontaneous nationwide revolt against the Communist dictatorship, the State Police (ÁVH), and Soviet domination. On 23 October, it began as a peaceful student demonstration which quickly attracted more than 200,000 Budapest inhabitants to the Parliament building. When protesters were fired upon from the windows of the Radio building, the population rose against the dictatorship. The revolt spread quickly across Hungary. On 3 November a national government was formed which disbanded ÁVH, declared its intention to withdraw from the Warsaw Pact and pledged to re-establish multiparty democracy. On 4 November, a large Soviet force invaded. Thousands of civilians fighted against them, but their organized resistance was crushed by 10 November. As a consequence, mass arrests began, and an estimated 200,000 Hungarians fled as refugees. All public discussion about the revolution was suppressed in Hungary for over 30 years. Since the political changes in 1990, the day of the beginning of the revolution, 23 October, is a national holiday in Hungary.

Minor issue

Not being a communist:) I think the lead has a bit of NPOV: "...a spontaneous nationwide revolt against the Communist dictatorship, the hated State Police, and Soviet domination". Propose rewording to "Communist regime" and "infamous State Police". --Brand ????? 11:36, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Agree with your suggested edit. Just do it, there are many editors watching and it will be revised collaboratively if someone has an issue.Ryanjo 16:22, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
I do believe that sources show that the State Police were hated. Is it POV to mention that residents of London were "scared" during the Blitz?--Paul 16:49, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
I understand why a lot of the recent "NPOV" edits were made, but why was this removed?

In October 1956, the remains of several prominent Hungarians executed in 1949 by the Rákosi regime for treason, were reinterred with full honours.

They were either executed for treason and then reinterred with full honors, or they were not. NPOV does not mean whitewashing. If these patriots/traitors were dug up and reburied in 1956, it should be in the article as showing growing resentment. What's the truth?--Paul 22:02, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
  • On the other hand, this particular piece of information doesn't seem to have been sourced, so perhaps its excision is for the best. --Paul 22:21, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Fixing references

Help! Can someone with a better understanding of German than I please fix this reference (in the "Soviet political reaction" section)?

This was quickly and violently put down with the help of the Soviet military. The death toll was between 125 and 270.<ref>[ Das internationale Schrifttum über den 17. Juni 1953]</ref>

Here's a link to start with: database search "1953 berlin revolt"
Thank you. --Paul 16:16, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

I replaced it with an English language reference, and changed the numbers slightly. This document is interesting; the Soviets attributed the 1953 German strike partially to agitators from Western Germany, ignoring economic and societal issues. Ryanjo 16:45, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
  • There are still three {{Fact}} tags left near the end of the article.--Paul 12:59, 13 October 2006 (UTC)
Can the citation tag be removed from the sentence about Nagy being buried in the municipal cemetery? This is right out of the Imre Nagy article, which has several references. Ryanjo 16:43, 13 October 2006 (UTC)
I found a reference (BBC) & added it, removing the tag. Two tags to go.--Paul 17:24, 13 October 2006 (UTC)

I found another copy of the UN report here, in case the linked site ever disappears. Ryanjo 19:48, 15 October 2006 (UTC)


Thanks to NCurse, we have the appropriate copyright tag and permission to use the photos on the HA Foundation website (as they explicitly give permission on their homepage to "Hungarian-American" organisations commemorating this event. That's us. Ive downloaded them and will upload them to commons and post them in a gallery next to the newspaper images on the Commons page. The Bem image is the pilot one. More to follow. Great work guys fixing the references, we are almost ready for prime time... Three hours to FAC (this is the time needed to put up the images) unless someone throws on the brakes beforehand. Istvan 17:25, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Does anyone else notice that it takes a very looooong time to load the top photo (the kids on the tank)? If anyone has a remedy, please use it. Also, please feel free to delete any photos (i.e. Konev) as you replace them with better ones - they are mainly placeholders. (but please leave in dead stalin) Istvan 18:43, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

These photos look excellent in the article. Great work and kudos to everone who worked on "liberating" these photos! Ryanjo 00:18, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

Is it possible to get another photo from the HA Foundation page to replace the photo of Nagy? There is one at a Cabinet meeting and another in a crowd which I think are more interesting. How is uploading to Commons accomplished? Ryanjo 01:08, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

Go to the Commons, click "upload", and do what they tell you. If I could figure it out, anyone can. :) K. Lastochka 01:11, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

dictatorship of the proletariat

was often used as a stronger form of reference to the government, most especially during the Rakosi era (pardon, I cant get my diacriticals to work) and immediately after 56, usually used as dogmatic justification for some provocative act. The footnoted reference contains this several times - I believe the link is certainly accurate, perhaps it may read a bit theatrical to western eyes, but it's certainly illustrative for Hungary 1949-1953 and 1957 and was no joke at the time. Still, if someone wants to link it to its literal meaning then go ahead, but I think in that case, the text itself would need revising to explain the real meaning of the reference.Istvan 19:26, 9 October 2006 (UTC)

Translation help needed

About the replacement of the educated classes with a "toiling intelligentsia" (currently reference 9). The citations are originally in Hungarian. I would like to ask for a copyedit of my very rough translation. The 2 parts of the monography (page 74) I reffered sound: "Darvas József, aki 1950. február óta vallás- és közoktatásügyi miniszter volt, a Köznevelés 1950. szeptember 17-i számában az egységes gimnáziumi keret megszüntetésérolsajátos módon mint a „középiskolai reform továbbfejlesztésérol” szólt. Kijelentette: „az ipari gimnáziumok ipari technikumokká, a mezogazdasági gimnáziumok mezogazdasági technikumokká, a közgazdasági gimnázium szakközépiskolává, a pedagógiai gimnáziumok tanító-, illetve óvónoképzo szakközépiskolává való fejlesztése nagyban hozzájárul ötéves tervünk szakemberszükségletének kielégítéséhez”." and "Egy 1950. februárban készült pártközponti jelentés szerint a „VKM a többszöri tisztogatás és értékes káderekkel való megerosítés után sem tudja a párt kultúrpolitikai célkituzéseit megvalósítani”. „A fo feladat – olvashatjuk – a polgári vezetés kiszorítása.”" - Serinde 11:36, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

I attempted some changes in punctuation and grammar. Hopefully I didn't change the meaning of the translation. Thanks for providing the reference. Ryanjo 22:37, 10 October 2006 (UTC)
The reference itself needs expansion. Who wrote it? Who published it? What date? What title Hungarian (and English)? What is the name of the journal? --Paul 22:39, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

Tha magazine is called Iskolakultúra (Schoolculture) issued by the University of Pécs and supported by the Hungarian Ministry of Education and Culture. You can find the copies online on its homepage and partially on the Electronical Periodic Archive. The article I reffered to appeared in the 2003 June-July common issue and was written by József Kardos, teaching professor of history of the University of Budapest. Do you need any other information? - Serinde 06:13, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

That's great! Thanks. I've updated the reference with this information.--Paul 12:51, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Citation need about the statue

The remains of the boots are clearly seen on the picture by the text. Is there still any additional reference needed? - Serinde 11:40, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

Revolution lacked effective leadership

Fellow editors: My highest regards to all of you working so furiously to improve this article. I am working my way through Charles Gati's new book, Failed Illusions (in the Further reading section) in order to fill in some additional references from another source (and will have some shortly). It struck me that Gati makes a major point that the one of the reasons for the revolution's failure was the ineffective leadership by the Nagy government, a point not well covered in our Wikipedia article. Some quotes: "For five long days, the new government was composed almost entirely of discredited party hacks, at a time when Nagy, with the whole country behind him, could have consolidated his authority." (p. 13), and "Moved by understandable fury against their Communist oppressors in Moscow and in Budapest, the insurgents neglected to contemplate the likely consequences of their actions. And even if young fighters could not and should not have been expected to be politically adept, shrewd, or calculating, older and presumably more experienced hands in ...Imre Nagy's ...government...(should have) asked young freedom fighters to look at a map, consider where the Soviet Union was, and...exercise restraint. (R)ecognizing that guiding history's first major anti-Soviet revolution to victory was a most difficult, perhaps even a hopeless task, there is still no need to obscure their bungling performance." (p. 2-3). In view of several FA reviewers asking for "the other side", should some statement dealing with this point be included? If so, where? Ryanjo 18:03, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

Here is a review of Gati's book: Commentary Magazine. I'm not sure that the points you quote show "the other side." It seems more like revisionist hindsight arguing that senseless slaughter could have been avoided if cooler heads had sought accomodation with the Soviets. If there had been no revolution, there wouldn't have been the 2nd intervention and the killing of thousands of Hungarians, but does anyone really think that any compromise could have been reached with the soviets, or that Hungarians seeing the possibility of freedom would have put their guns away and gone home? I suppose we could add something in aftermath about how some commentators bemoan the futility of the uprising, given that the Western powers were unwilling and/or unable to back up their rhetoric of rollback with any action. Is there any mention of this conflict in the article (International reaction? I forget.) I think we should wait for the FAC opposing editors to "specific rationale[s] that can be addressed." before anyone starts making big changes to the article.--Paul 18:37, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

OK, I don't want to do any big edits either. My term "the other side" was not correct. I should have said "other factors" which may have caused the revolution to fail, other than Soviet hegemony. My interpretation of Gati's point is that there was some initial reluctance within the Soviet Politburo io intervene (before the October 31st meeting at which Khruschev changed his opinion) -- a reluctance which might have been manipulated if events in Hungary had developed differently. Whether Nagy's government was aware of the Kremlin debate or could have influenced these events is uncertain. But the example of how things went differently for Gomulka comes to mind. Ryanjo 20:51, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

We probably should at least BRIEFLY mention that Nagy and Co. could have handled things more effectively--I think what the "neutrality police" on FA might have been sensing was a slight tendency towards idealization of our heroes. :) K. Lastochka 21:08, 10 October 2006 (UTC)


Is there any way to make the little "flag icon" under the combatants list be the flag of Communist Hungary next to the listing of the ÁVH? I can't figure out how to do that but it might be a nice touch. K. Lastochka 21:24, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

I think there is a category on the commons Flags of Hungary (I never seem to be able to find it again) and Im sure there was one from the era. Also, if you can, you (or someone skilled) could take an image of the flag and cut a circle out of the middle to put up on the revolutionaries side. Istvan 21:56, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

I've already found an image of the commie flag, and can create a flag-with-the-hole in about 30 seconds on Photoshop. What I can't figure out is how to put it in the infobox--when I went to try editing it, it looked like there was some special "flag icon" template or something. Anyone can help? K. Lastochka 23:57, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

Fake it :), instead of the flagicon template, write: [[Image:Komcsi_flag_Hungary.svg|22x20px]] (the name of the file is not important, only the 22x20px part, so that its the right size). --Dami 22:00, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Ah, thanks. Bravo to whoever put the new flags up there, they look great! K. Lastochka 15:00, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

dictator, dictatorship

Despite reasonable responses to the POV protest on using the "d-word" for Rákosi and his government, it seems to have become a lightning rod for criticizing the article's drive for FA status. Would any of the frequent editors consider de-escalating the issue by substituting "under the control of Mátyás Rákosi" (or something else) insteady of "under the dictatorship of Mátyás Rákosi", and "against Communist party and Soviet domination" instead of "against the Communist dictatorship and Soviet domination"? Ryanjo 22:50, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

It's such an unfortunate issue...I want so badly to see the article become FA, but I also don't want to water down and censor it to meet the demands of the "neutrality" police. He WAS a dictator, the Communist regime WAS a dictatorship, there's just no way around that. I personally am uncomfortable with "wrapping things in soft weasel fur" in order to achieve our goal--it feels almost like selling out. Just my 2 cents. K. Lastochka 23:59, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

It isn't clear if "dictator" and "dictatorship" are very important, or just examples of the lack of NPOV that this article supposedly exhibits. Would excising those terms remove objections? What about complaints that the article doesn't show "all sides" of the conflict? October 23rd isn't a national holiday in Hungary because they feel empathy for the plight of the Soviets in keeping their post war empire together.--Paul 00:16, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

How about "totalitarian" or "totalitarian rule" of the Communist Party (actually called the Worker's Party?), reflecting the fact that they banned other political parties? Pasternakanism 06:29, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

The 1957 U.N. Report on Rákosi:

Immediately after the Second World War, the Hungarian people sought to give expression to their political views. A general election was fought in 1945 by six political parties, authorized by the Allied Control Commission. Five of these won seats in Parliament. The Independent Smallholders emerged with 245 seats, the Social Democrats with sixty-nine, the Communists with seventy, the National Peasants with twenty-three and the Democratic Party with two. The four major parties formed a coalition, but Communist influence steadily asserted itself. By 1948, leaders of the non-Communist parties had been silenced, had fled abroad or had been arrested, and in 1949, Hungary officially became a People’s Democracy. Real power was in the hands of Mátyás Rákosi, a Communist trained in Moscow. Under his régime, Hungary was modelled more and more closely on the Soviet pattern. Free speech and individual liberty ceased to exist. Arbitrary imprisonment became common and purges were undertaken, both within and outside the ranks of the Party. In June 1949, the Foreign Minister, László Rajk, was arrested; he was charged with attempting to overthrow the democratic order and hanged. Many other people were the victims of similar action. This was made easier by the apparatus of the State security police or ÁVH, using methods of terror in the hands of the régime, which became identified with Rákosi’s régime in the minds of the people.

I don't understand this squeamishness about the word dictator. Is there a Political Science database somewhere with banned words? Why are we searching for euphemisms for a perfectly serviceable word?--Paul 17:26, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Reassess: One of the FAC commentors (Ghirlandajo) explains his POV objection by referring to the wikipedia definitions for dictator, dictatorship, and totalitarian. His point is that Rákosi did not have dictatorial power (e.g. making laws by personal decree). I'm not sure if this is true or not, he certainly seems to have had the power to arrest and execute people. Do we want to argue the point (do we have references?) or should we fall back to "totalitarian?" --Paul 18:09, 13 October 2006 (UTC)

I'd say just leave it, based on that reviewer's unprovoked ad-hominem digs at both the administrator and another reviewer. (Actually, he fell nicely on his own sword, and an admin might dismiss his vote outright because of those). Moreover, he stated he would not post here anymore. No matter what, in any exchange I just dont think you're going to get a lot of logic back. One thing it should enlighten us to make sure that Russians browsing this page dont feel unfairly criticised by the voice of the article - hence my tendency to focus on the ÁVH more - I think we've done that very nicely.Istvan 19:22, 13 October 2006 (UTC)

Revolution / FAC comments

There is a lot of defensive posturing on the FAC page about the word REVOLUTION in the title. Whilst I believe that UPRISING is the correct terminology, and I think I have made this observation here weeks ago, it is not something that I would argue about, although the point is arguable. However, antagonising reviewers on the FAC page is NOT the way to obtain their support. Please note the intro. On the FAC page:

Because you may have spent weeks or even months working on an article, you may feel emotionally attached to it. Although you may know more about the subject than the reviewers, please be aware that all professional writers take criticism from editors, and that contributors should strive to achieve professional quality in their nominations. Therefore, contributors are strongly encouraged to respond positively to criticism. [My emphasis]

In any event, let's not be selective or economical with the truth. One response reads:

Common parlance is "Revolution." "1956 Hungarian Revolution" returns 80,000+ Google hits. "1956 Hungarian Uprising" returns 16,000+, while "1956 Hungarian Revolt" returns 720 hits. "Revolution" may not be the best word, but it is the one in common use.

The point is that "Hungarian Uprising" returns 190,000 on Google. Following the logic of the above comment, "common parlance" is obviously NOT "1956 Hungarian Revolution" but "Hungarian Uprising". The reviewers have an arguable point. Bardwell 11:03, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Please compare like things. These are the google hit statistics:

  • "Hungarian revolution" 3,960,000
  • "Hungarian uprising" 550,000
  • "Hungarian revolt" 491,000
  • 1956 "Hungarian revolution" 202,000
  • 1956 "Hungarian uprising" 72,600
  • 1956 "Hungarian revolt" 24,700

Common parlance obviously is Hungarian revolution, and not Hungarian uprising. BTW, the reviewer concerned about the name has now agreed to the current naming convention with some clarification.--Paul 12:24, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

You are not comparing like with like. You have changed the search criteria. Your original search criteria, as posted on the FAC page, was the "1956 Hungarian Revolution". And that was the quote on which I made my above observation. The respective Google returns, at time of writing, are as I have stated. 108,000 vs. 82,200. Bardwell 13:40, 11 October 2006 (UTC)
"1956 Hungarian revolution" is more restrictive than "Hungarian uprising." If you add "1956" to your search or remove it from mine, you will see that "Hungarian revoluion" is much more common.--Paul 13:54, 11 October 2006 (UTC)
OK, let's call it a draw. Bardwell 14:22, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

I suspect it was mainly my comments that are the "defensive posturing" you refer to. I hereby recognize and admit my mistake.K. Lastochka 15:33, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Well in your (and my) defense, some of the comments are simply not helpful. "Hit and run" comments: "Oppose, too POV" figure it out. Ryanjo 17:34, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Well, absolutely, and that's what I was getting pissed about. I just didn't realize I was being such a textbook case of the dumb newbie getting emotionally attached and defensive about an article, I'm trying to keep a cooler head now. :) K. Lastochka 17:37, 11 October 2006 (UTC)


Under the heading of International Events there is a brief mention of events in Poland. An editor had left this comment: what led to this? If the gov't was the most repressive, why this change? need some rationalization . I don't know who the editor was, but they have a valid point. The importance of developments in Poland in 1956 is very relevant to the understanding of the Hungarian uprising. This was recognised and even emphasised by the UN Report (see UN [50]).

When I have found all the appropriate citations, I shall replace the Gomulka para in the article by something on the following lines:

In June 1956, there was an insurrection in Poznan. The workers rioted to protest shortages of food and consumer goods, bad housing, decline in real income, shipments of commodities to the Soviet Union and poor management of the economy. The Polish Government's initial response was to follow the Moscow line and brand the rioters "provocateurs, counterrevolutionaries and imperialist agents". Scores were killed and wounded in the riots. But then, the Polish Party hierarchy realised that they were up against a nationwide nationalist movement and they made a tactical about turn. They reinterpreted the riots. The rioters became "honest workers with legitimate grievances". Changes were announced, wages were raised by 50% and a number of prominent Jews were removed from public life.(Rothschild and Wingfield:Return to Diversity, A Political History of East Central Europe Since World War II OUP 2000).

Edward Ochab, the Polish Prime Minister and First Secretary of the Polish Communist Party, invited the rehabilitated non-Jewish [sic] (the source is NOT David Irving) Polish Communist, Wladyslaw Gomulka, to take over as First Secretary of the Party. Gomulka insisted that he be given real power to implement reforms. One specific condition he set was that the Soviet Marshal Konstantin Rokossovsky be removed from the Polish Politburo and Defense Ministry. Ochab yielded. On October 19, the majority of the Polish leadership, backed by the army and also the Internal Security Corps, brought Gomulka and his friends into the Politburo and designated Gomulka as First Secretary of the Party. The Soviet leadership viewed events in Poland with alarm. Simultaneously with troop 'manoeuvres' on the Russian-Polish border a high-level delegation of the Soviet Central Committee flew to Poland. It was lead by Khrushchev and included Mikoyan, Bulganin, Molotov, Kaganovich, Marshal Konev and others. Orbach and Gomulka made it clear to the Soviets that if they made a hostile move against Poland Poland would fight. But they reassured the Russians that the changes in Poland were internal matters and that Poland had no intention of abandoning Communism or of being hostile to the Soviet Union. The Russians yielded. Gomulka was confirmed in his new position. Information about events in Poland reached the people of Hungary via Radio Free Europe's news and commentary services during 19 - 22 October 1956!

To the Hungarians all this must have been sweet music and, most likely, the final spur for a call to arms. There can be little doubt that the intellectual elite of Hungary in October 1956, were saying 'If the Poles can do it, so can we!' The interesting question is, I think, why the Soviets reacted so differently to events in Hungary. But that, of course, is a topic involving analysis and it has no place in an encyclopedic article under "1956 Hungarian Revolution". Bardwell 14:19, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Good paragraphs, and I agree that there should be more about the events in Poland. However we must be careful to avoid bloating that section--this isn't an article about Poland after all. What you've written is very good but a bit too long IMO. K. Lastochka 15:37, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

This section is too long, IMHO. Could it be referenced below as a footnote? Ryanjo 17:10, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Bonjour Bardwell, The footnote is very long, and needs a reference to be in this section; otherwise the raw prose, certainly germaine to 56, deserves to become its own wikipage (even better). Your call. Istvan 23:31, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Actually I am guilty of putting up the footnote. There are 2 references. A reference within a footnote is clumsy, for certain. I will look at the Gomulka article, with a plan to move it there . Ryanjo 23:50, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Lead Photo

I swapped the photos to previous placement - This is of course purely a matter of judgement. I dont hate the stalin/boots pic, its just that I love the kids/tank pic for the lead -I believe its very iconic for the event - it gives a more human insight and is an elgegant witness for many important aspects of the story - i.e. how did a tank get to puskin u. and why are kids climbing on it? This picture is worth 10,000 words and is, IMHO, the best choice for lead. Istvan 14:32, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

The Stalin boots pic is one of my favorites, great symbolism....but it might make it look like the revolution (excuse me, uprising) was a success. In the midst of the current POV wars, it is best to not have such an emotionally-charged picture as the lead photo, so I support your decision. K. Lastochka 17:13, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Aftermath in Hungary

As an example of the complete suppression of the reformist opposition, that the Hungarian military participated in the Prague Spring a decade later. But perhaps this is off-topic. -- TheMightyQuill 16:20, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

I think a sentence could fit in the Aftermath section, to reinforce the Soviet transformation of the Hungarian army after the revolution. Try to get a reference though. Ryanjo 17:48, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

It was both ironic and shameful, and a sentence or two is certainly in order.Istvan 17:51, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Revolution or Not

Please see the text of the U.S. House of Representatives Resolution 479, excerpt follows:

Resolved, That the House of Representatives--

(1) commends the people of Hungary as they mark the 50th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution which set the stage for the ultimate collapse of communism in 1989 throughout Central and Eastern Europe, including Hungary, and two years later in the Soviet Union itself;

I think it should be established that Revolution is official, or at least the more commonly and publicly used term.--Dami 21:09, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Though here's an excerpt from a committe meeting on this resolution:

Mr. GALLEGLY. Today, the Subcommittee on Europe and Emerging Threats is marking up three resolutions, all of which we expect to be considered later today by the Full Committee.
The first item on the agenda is House Resolution 479, a resolution introduced by Congressman Lantos, the Ranking Member of the Committee, which recognizes the 50th anniversary of the Hungarian revolution, which began on October 23, 1956. It is estimated that 3,000 to 4,000 Hungarian freedom fighters and 700 Soviet troops were killed during the uprising and tens of thousands more were injured. The resolution also reaffirms the friendship between the people and governments of the United States and Hungary.

Also in the text of the resolution the events are referred to two times as an uprising, but the events name is Revolution, as shown by these excerpts:

indicating that the legacy of the 1956 Revolution continues to inspire Hungarians to this day;
Whereas the people of Hungary are beginning a year-long celebration to mark the 50th anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956
as well as for those individuals executed by the Soviet and Hungarian communist authorities in the five years following the Revolution, including Prime Minister Imre Nagy;
they mark the 50th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution which set the stage for the ultimate collapse of communism in 1989 throughout Central and Eastern Europe,

In conclusion I think that its not a question of point of view but a question of using an established name for the events. --Dami 21:25, 11 October 2006 (UTC)


referring to "First Soviet Intervention" header - I propose that a more descriptive title would be either "Revolution seizes Hungary" or something similar as it is both more descriptive, and answers two FAC objections at once: perceived anti-russian bias (a la Ghirla) and identifies the point at which the "uprising" indeed became a "revolution".

The first Soviet Intervention, although important, was not causative. Oct 23 - 25 very few Russians were involved in fighting, it was almost all ÁVH v everyone else. Antirussian sentiment existed for sure, but it did not translate to open hostility. The UN reports that peace might have been achieved much sooner had Soviet units not entered BP on 24 Oct because the crowd's anger was almost exclusively upon the ÁVH and (e.g. stalin toppled/Blaha Lujza) the crowd and soviets already in Bp left each other alone. Summary - Before 25 Oct, it wasnt really about the russians, it was about Hungarians.

Western (and Soviet) eyes, especially before 1989, tend to view events through the prism of US-Soviet rivalry. This still shades this page (though is not excessive IMO). Istvan 14:46, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

Good points. "Revolution seizes Hungary" is indeed better IMO. K. Lastochka 14:56, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

Since the higher section header is "The revolution", a subsection that says "Revolution seizes Hungary" is not good writing (repetitive). The timeline of the revolution is:

  1. demonstrations (first shots)
  2. spark (first shots)
  3. the masses rise up (first shots)
  4. ÁVH and existing Soviet units try to put down the uprising (?)
  5. Soviets withdraw, truce (Interlude)
  6. New government formed (Interlude)
  7. Soviets invade in force and crush the revolution (Second Soviet intervention)

I think we need something better than "Revolution seizes Hungary" Personally, I like the symmetry of "First Soviet intervention," plus the article says:

Gero requested Soviet military intervention "to suppress a demonstration that was reaching an ever greater and unprecedented scale." Why is this not a "First Soviet intervention?"--Paul 15:38, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

It is indeed, and your point is mirrored in the UN report as well. However in your list above, point 4 is better described as the the masses trying to eradicate the ÁVH - yes, they also defended themselves against soviets, but only really attacked them offensively after the parliament massacre of 25 Oct. My beef with "soviet intervention" in this spot is that it puts Hungarian-Russian conflict above Hungarian-ÁVH conflict. It was (as the UN reports) the ÁVH which was the overwhelming and primary target of the crowds' wrath. Most atrocities (at this point) were committed against ÁVH members and their sympathisers. Point taken also on the parallel/structure issue. Can we find a third way? Istvan 16:30, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

"Fighting (or Conflict) expands and topples the government"? Ryanjo 16:36, 12 October 2006 (UTC)
Try #2: "Expanding conflict topples the government" Ryanjo 16:38, 12 October 2006 (UTC)
#3 (ver of #1) - "Fighting Spreads, Government Falls" ? Istvan 16:39, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

I like #3, same style as the other headers Ryanjo 17:29, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

Done. Istvan 17:34, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

I really disagree with this. We now have "Fighting Spreads, Government Falls" followed by "Soviet intervention." This goes too far the other way and implies that the Soviets were not involved until November 4th. You are letting the trees obscure the forest.--Paul 18:07, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

I think the way it is now is fine. When people read the article, it will become clear that the Soviets were involved to a greater or lesser extent from the beginning. "Fighting spreads" is descriptive but also not excessively precise--they were fighting, doesn't specify WHO they were fighting--which for a header is fine IMHO. The thing we might want to change is "Soviet intervention"--it does make it sound like the Soviets suddenly marched in out of nowhere and put an end to things. How about "Soviet victory" or something along those lines? K. Lastochka 19:25, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

How about leaving the Soviets out of the headers altogether :"Revolution crushed"? Ryanjo 20:29, 12 October 2006 (UTC)
(or for our more sensitive POV critics: "Rowdy Hungarians asked politely by their Soviet neighbors to calm down and return to the gulag" Ryanjo 20:29, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

Maybe the problem is they think the Hungarians are still revolting (might be a joke). Seriously, we should fix the header issue here - too many changes at this level and we could be called "unstable" (might also be a joke). Can we agree that the scope of the issue is within the "Revolution" section, and this impinges all the subsections, with "2.2 Fighting spreads, government falls" and "2.4 Soviet Intervention" being the most in question. I dont much like the bland "2.3.1 Hungarian political changes" either, though I concede its descriptive. Can we first draw the envelope around this section and work it out here? I vote to keep 2.2 and change 2.4 to "Soviet Invasion" or "Revolution Crushed". Istvan 20:50, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

I support either name for 2.4. "Soviet intervention" is accurate for the second invasion, because the first response was an internal shift of forces requested by the barely in power Gero government, and the second a planned military operation against the standing government (complete with name "Operation Whirlwind" -- which at the risk of too many choices, could be another header name option). "Revolution Crushed" avoids the first/second Soviet actions dilemma -- although I can already imagine the whining about "crushed" ("just because most of Budapest was leveled, it's still POV"). So after all that, I can live with either, but then no more changes. Ryanjo 21:04, 12 October 2006 (UTC)
Of the possibilites discussed for header 2.4, Soviet Intervention is my choice. Since it is the current header, no changes needed.--Paul 21:38, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

I agree w/ Paul, we might as well leave it as it is--it's not really that enormous an issue and the current headers seem fine to me. I personally would prefer "Revolution crushed" but....neutrality police...K. Lastochka 23:34, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

Follow-up in related articles...

Now that this article has been fixed up so nicely, if anyone wants to take a few minutes to improve summaries at People's Republic of Hungary and History of Hungary, it would probably be a good idea. I'm a littl busy at the moment. -- TheMightyQuill 05:41, 13 October 2006 (UTC)

Display differences and the UN doc

Paul, the UN doc comes up just fine for me. I dont see any need to alter the refs - the problem may be on your end. Ryanjo? Also, a few days ago, I put the refs into 2-column format but notice that at work (I may have accidentally logged on from there) it only displays as one column (as before). Are you seeing 1 or 2 columns, and if you know how to enforce 2 (much sharper looking) please do so. Istvan 01:17, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

I am having no problem with the UN report. I just put a paragraph about the Special Committee and its report on the Aftermath section, by the way. I get only one column on the references. Do you know of a page with 2 columns? We'll just copy the HTML. Ryanjo 03:36, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
The 2-column option doesn't seem to work with IE but works fine with Firefox.

The doc is fine for me too, looks like it was an isolated problem.K. Lastochka 18:16, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Revolution, Uprising, Revolt

I know Revolution is really the best word to use, I'm just afraid that a lot of potential support votes might be getting scared off by the big debate on FAC over what to call the thing. Should we change it in the hopes of getting approved for FA, or stand our ground? It feels like capitulation, I know, but just figured I'd at least raise the question. K. Lastochka 18:31, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

The problem isn't lack of support votes, it is turning the oppose votes around. As to "revolution" and the recent post on interwiki names, this article is an English language one, and it used the English language conventional name for the event. The U.S. Department of State calls it a "revolution," The British Foriegn Office calls it a "revolution," and one of you folks that speaks Hungarian has assured us that the Hungarians refer to it as a "revolution."--Paul 18:38, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Yeah, they do--the word is "forradalom". :) I agree completely with what you say (English article, English usage!) and will go remind the people on FAC what language we're using. :) K. Lastochka 18:43, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

I have some questions, as looking at the articles in other languages not naming it a revolution, I found that:

  1. the Polish article says its "called also the 1956 Revolution (in Hungarian [...])"
  2. the French : "Le mouvement hongrois d’octobre 1956 fut une insurrection, voire une révolution." (please translate)
  3. the Swedish article : "Upproret inleddes den 23:e oktober 1956 i samband med en demonstration för solidaritet med Polen. Säkerhetspolisen öppnade eld mot demonstranterna och snart utbröt generalstrejk, vapen delades ut, revolutionära nationella kommittéer och arbetarråd upprättades spontant över hela Ungern. " (anyone know what this means?)
  4. The Dutch article doesn't seem to mention the word "revolution"
  5. The Russian (no idea yet, they should have a latinized version... :( )
  6. The German : "Der Ungarische Volksaufstand wird heutzutage in Ungarn als Revolution (forradalom) bezeichnet. " (I think it says that in Hungary it is known/called as a revolution, please confirm)

Side note: Forradalom is Revolution as KL brilliantly put it.

Side note 2: Could a name be POV as there are no historians mentioned that either dispute the name or the events being a revolution

Side note 3: "My point was to compare how the other Wikipedias handle this issue of POV in their article naming." - most of them didn't :), they just used the name they saw fit (most likely the "official" one seen in history textbooks in their respective languages), without any deliberation

--Dami 20:47, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Nice work, good eye! :) The Russian article seems to consistently use "?????????", uprising. The second half of that German quote says "in Hungary, defined as a Revolution". Looks like we've got a decent case for NOT CHANGING THE NAME. K. Lastochka 23:38, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Reviewer's List of To-do's

One reviewer left a very precise list of suggestions on my talk page. As per Paul's suggestion, I am posting these here:

Opinion sentences

Should be reworded to sound more encyclopedic:

  • "...working class Hungarians bore the brunt of the fighting." (reworded to "Hungarian civilians") Istvan 19:38, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "The new Soviet troops shared no sympathy for the Hungarians; they were recruited from faraway Soviet Central Asia, and many did not speak European languages." (reworded to "The new Soviet troops, in order to insure loyalty, had been recruited from faraway Soviet Central Asia, and many did not speak European languages.")-Paul 18:20, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
nitpicky comment: I assume the Soviet soldiers spoke Russian? Russian is a European language...K. Lastochka 23:31, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • The events in Hungary reinforced the inability of the Western alliance to roll back Soviet domination during the height of the Cold War, fearing retaliation by Warsaw Pact forces along their borders. Soviet action had clearly shown that, regardless of national ambitions of the Warsaw Pact client nations, armed force would be used to maintain regimes that reflected Soviet-style communism." (I just took a crack at that one, see if it works OK...) K. Lastochka 19:55, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • example of pov words: "The brutal suppression in Hungary by the Soviet forces" (Ryanjo has fixed this, rewording to: "The events in Hungary") -Paul 18:28, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "...Alexander Dubcek had learned his lesson"... (reworded to "Alexander Dubcek had learned")-Paul 18:20, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
About Ryanjo's changes to the opening bit of the International section, it's good, except I cringed at the phrase "Soviet illusions of the triumph of socialism". Now, I know they were illusions, and you know they were illusions, but in light of the recent and ongoing POV disputes, it strikes me as (pardon the expression) pure komcsi bait. Some irritated socialist or angry Russian is likely to take that as some sort of anti-Russian bias, post a big fat Oppose on our FAC page, and mess everything up. (I'm getting to be like Pavlov's dog about potentially offensive phrases, it's getting ridiculous.) I'm not sure what to change it to, but in the interest of safety, it should probably be changed. K. Lastochka 23:16, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

I originally considered using "Soviet goals" or "Soviet promises", if that helps. I guess I have the "POV virus". Ryanjo 23:23, 14 October 2006 (UTC) "Promises" works, sounds safer. :) K. Lastochka 23:39, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Sources needed

  • "Radical nationalisation of the economy under the Soviet model produced economic stagnation, lower standards of living and a deep malaise." (reference provided)-Paul 18:20, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "Communist Interior Minister László Rajk established the Hungarian State Security Police, later known as the ÁVH, which brutally suppressed political opposition, especially from religious, nationalist and democratic groups."(rewrite and reference provided) Istvan 22:59, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "Religious education was denounced and church leaders were replaced by those loyal to the government." (reference provided) Ryanjo 00:41, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "Due to the strength of working class resistance, it was the industrial areas of Budapest which were primarily targeted by Soviet artillery and airstrikes."(reference provided)Istvan 20:01, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "Over 200,000 Hungarians fled Hungary, (reference provided)-Paul 19:39, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "some 26,000 were put on trial by the Kádár government, and of those 13,000 were imprisoned." (reference provided)-Paul 03:07, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "...including Palmiro Togliatti and Giorgio Napolitano, regarded the Hungarian insurgents as counter-revolutionaries, as reported in l'Unità, the official PCI newspaper."
That Napolitano supported the Soviet intervention in 1956 is widely reported [8].
A December 10, 1956 article in Time Magazine [9] mentions the position of the party in its newspaper, l'Unità.
This obituary [10] of Giuseppe Di Vittorio mentions his opposition to the PCI position.
The conflict between Antonio Giolitti and party boss Palmiro Togliatti is here: [11]. (Talk about POV: the article is called "Reds on the Run"...)
Pietro Nenni's opposition to the PCI position is in this Encyclopædia Britannica article: [12]
All of the above facts can also be obtained in the articles on Wikipedia for the PCI and the individuals above. So how to handle this collection of references? Link them all here, or in the other articles? Ryanjo 02:40, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
(references provided) Ryanjo 15:25, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
  • "...but his dispatches were heavily censored;..." (reference provided)-Paul 18:20, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Outside Budapest

Evidently, the capital needs to be the focus, but I think the rest of the country should be mentioned a little more, at least as far as sources allow. In order to facilitate that, let me present a couple of passages I'd like to see interpolated, if others agree. They're from The State Against Society: Political Crises and Their Aftermath in East Central Europe, by Grzegorz Ekiert, 1996, Princeton University Press.

p. 38
The population, represented by a myriad of independent institutions, political parties and organizations, resisted the Soviet invasion not only by a general strike but by taking up arms to defend their revolution. The most desperate armed resistance was mounted in the industrial areas of Csepel, Ujpest, Pecs, Miskolc, and above all, Dunapentele-the new industrial complex formerly known as "Stalin-town." The mountains near Miskolc and Pecs were the main strongholds of partisan resistance. Intense fighting in the capital and the provinces between poorly armed insurgents and a vastly superior Soviet army lasted until November 9. Skirmishes continued in isolated aareas until the beginning of December. In the country's industrial centers, a general strike lasted by and large until mid-January of 1957.

p. 51:
Our knowledge of what happened in provincial towns and in the countryside during the revolution is still very fragmented and limited. Most of the historiography of the Hungarian Revolution has concentrated on the events in Budapest and political struggles and decisions on the national level. Lomax's history of the revolution published in 1976 is one of the preciously few works that gives a more systematic account of the situation outside Budapest. From his account it is apparent that in provincial cities officials of the old Stalinist regime put up little or no resistance to the revolution. In some places like Gyor, the old authorities quietly disintegrated almost overnight, and old officials slipped away. In others, the old regime continued to exist without change through the first days of the revolution. In Pecs, Lomax observes, "The Stalinist authorities in both the town and party administration and in the factories sought to maintain control for several days with the support of a force of over a thousand armed security police (AVH) men." Finally, in some places party-state functionaries joined the revolution. In Milkolc, for example, "from the start of the revolution the

p. 52:
local party leadersip declared its solidarity with the people's demands, and local party leaders and activists took a leading role in organizing the revolutionary forces."
The only force that desperately resisted the revolution through the country were units of the security police AVH. The regular police and army units either remained uncommitted or joined the emerging revolutionary institutions. Although the history of the revolution outside Budapest is still incomplete, the scattered information we have clearly leads to the conclusion that the whole institutional structure of the party-state on the local level collapsed either instantly or in a matter of days, and the politicla vacuum that emerged was rapidly filled up by new revolutionary institutions. The vivid indication of the rapid dissolution of the party-state's institutions wa the almost total lack of effective resistance on the side of the old regime. The number of functionaries killed opposing the revolutionary forces was surprisingly small. The postintervention government eager to justify the Soviet intervention and political repression, was able to produce only 220 cases of victims of "counter-revolutionary" terror throughout the whole country, of whom 164 were members of the state armed forces, mostly the AVH.
Biruitorul 20:47, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

  • I think this article is getting dangerously close to being bloated. If it weren't currently up for FAC, I'd be tempted to hack it down to a reasonable size. Currently, I don't support any additions regardless of their merit. Also, we've already had one supporter reneg because of too many changes to the article during FAC. It's time for an editing moritorium except for responding to FAC concerns.--Paul 21:14, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • Sorry, I think I'm guilty of this in the past few days. I will cease and desist. Ryanjo 23:18, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
  • We all are caught up in a zeal to make the article perfect, and now we have gotten it to excellent++. Let's provide the Italian Communist Party refs and then let's stop editing and see if we can get through FAC. That means contacting the oppose votes and asking them to revisit the article.--Paul 14:43, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
There are a few more little detail things to clean up, then I agree, stop editing and try to turn around oppose votes. I can speak Russian OK, maybe I should work on getting Ghirla's support? K. Lastochka 14:54, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
Well, I just went and wrote a message in Russian to Ghirla (let me tell you, his talk page looks like a war zone.) Basically just asked him to re-read it, said that we've been working hard to clean it up, asked what he thought. Maybe will get a positive response. K. Lastochka 15:12, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Also just contacted ppm, Everyking, ScienceApologist (all in English, thank God). Hope we can get a few support votes out of 'em. :) K. Lastochka 15:19, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

UN Report

Im beginning to suspect that in some cases the UN report might be used to to put on anti-soviet bias. Such as this sentence which quotes a very strong UN statement without even telling the reader it came from the UN:

"However, Hungarian support did not materialize; the fighting did not take on the character of a civil war which divides a population, but rather that of "a well-equipped foreign army crushing by overwhelming force a national movement and eliminating the Government through which that movement was finding effective expression".

Now I personally have a completely neutral feel about the subject at hand and only am concerned with NPOV. I don't wish anyone to think im pro-soviet. I just dont think using strong statements from a source without even statating who said is in a way pushing POV. And the problem before which pretty much has been fixed now is using the UN as an excuse to use strong words like refering to the soviet government as "dictatorship" and so on. I think history comes off pretty clearly that the Soviets ran a bad (in a sense) dictatorship in Hungary and there is no need to push that view point (even if its true) since the reader will get it from the facts. So I'm suggesting some statements with an inline citation to the UN report should be revisted since it seems to be the main source of pov issues raised. I do not know the extent of the damage since I read the article too many times and this things just fly by my eyes now. - Tutmosis 23:20, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Well, how about we say "...tht fighting did not take on the character of a civil war which divides a populations, but rather, in the words of the such-and-such UN report, "a well-equipped foreign army..." etc. I hope I understand you correctly that it is not the quote which is the problem, rather the lack of attribution in the body of the article? PS Where the heck is that quote, I can't even find it to make the change. :( K. Lastochka 23:30, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

It's the last sentence of the fifth paragraph of "Soviet intervention"--Paul 23:38, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
Yea thats pretty much what I would recommend regarding that quote. In my original point I was suggesting using neutral statements from the UN report which as it appears were written very pro-hungarian. Nothing wrong with that but we are encyclopedia and we should abide with NPOV even if 1 POV is held by the majority. - Tutmosis 23:35, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

In 1957 the international community was outraged by the Soviet behavior, and saw the UN report as an authoritative way to counter the bald lies being put out by the Soviet propaganda machine. The overwhelming majority of the UN membership didn't think that there were two morally equivalent sides to the "Matter of Hungary," and 49 years later only a very small minority of hard-core marxist revisionists think so.

The Soviets said that the revolutionaries in Hungary were a small minority, and were backed by western capitalist insurgents. They claimed that the majority of patriotic socialist working class Hungarians were fighting on the side of the Soviet troops in putting down this counter-revolutionary clique. The UN report went to pains to point out that almost no Hungarians fought on the AVH/Soviet side, and that the uprising was spontaneous and widespread. Looking at the UN report today, it is clear that the 1956 Hungarian revolution, though a military success for the Soviets, was an complete PR disaster, snatching away any remaing moral capital they retained from having fought the Nazis. The Soviets were forevermore regarded as dangerous and amoral adversaries. As we recede from the Cold War these truths are being forgotten. History as it really happened is not POV.--Paul 23:52, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

I agree entirely with Paul, and (informally) probably most of this article's POV critics would too. What I think would work, is to make this point with descriptive & referenced statements, rather than single (and in the thinking of some) inflammatory adjectives, like "hated" and "amoral". In essence, this is what the writers of the UN report did--laborious detail, irrefutable conclusions. They had over 200 pages to do it, we have fewer, so we have to be more clever...Ryanjo 00:38, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
Regarding Pauls comment, Im not suggesting we remove truthful statements and provide communist propaganda. I'm just saying like the sentence from my original point, there might be some UN statements that contain many colorful adjectives which I see as minor POV which should be avoided. The way you desribed different viewpoints at the time above is perfect, thats how the article should be. It should speak like "#1 said this while #2 said that" instead of mergin #1 opinion into the text itself like it does currently. - Tutmosis 01:10, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Wow. If we don't get FA after all the work you guys have put into this, then something is seriously amiss. K. Lastochka 00:54, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

There is a balance to be struck here - Tutmosis, I value your opinion and wish to have your support vote, for this we have, as soon as you put your review up, started reviewing inflammatory language and pareing it back to accurate, referenced portrayal of the event. The balance is not only between accuracy and POV but also the historical record as it stands vs a forced moral equivalency (which is explicitly mentioned in WP:NPOV#Undue weight such a moral equivalency, or equivocacy, is not historical at all but rather very much reflects modern culture instead - at its extreme it borders on revision and is the mechanism by which we forget the disasterous episodes of history and then repeat them yet again. And we are already forgetting. Adults now reaching 20 in Hungary dont remember anything about socialism. This is a huge generation gap in the making.
Yet, I dont want the voice of this article to be offensive - An ethnic Russian browsing it should not feel he is being personally attacked but should also be able inform himself of the event. Tutmosis, if this is what you mean by bias then I am 100% in agreement with you, and I welcome your very specific list of suggestions (I think we're almost complete) and any more you may find. Istvan 01:08, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
Well basically this was my own only concern from the start. My only querell was with the statements like (lets make one up): "Communists put on a dictatorship under which many suffered". Instead of saying that you can give off the same point by stating facts like "Communist used military force to capture the parliament and install a governement of their own. The new communist government then jail and execute prominent democratic party members." With the latter you let the reader make up there own opinion which is obvious the same as the first but without telling your analysis. I guess that's basically what Im trying to drive home, removal of strong opinioned analysis even though its probably true. - Tutmosis 01:19, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
By the way I think the article is already nearing its perfect state and I'm pretty much just waiting till the fact templates are taking care of to support. - Tutmosis 01:22, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

About that quote from the UN report debated above, I notice that part of it has been chopped off. Is the sentence really as effective as it is now? Seems a bit murky and confusing to me. K. Lastochka 16:08, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Agree, the sentence was kind of pointless and didn't really make the civil-war vs. foreign intervention point very well. I've restored most of what was there originally.--Paul 16:42, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Much clearer, köszönöm. BTW we now have ScienceApologist's hard-won support on FAC! :) K. Lastochka 16:45, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

More precisely, he has withdrawn his opposition, but in any event it is welcome.--Paul 16:53, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Hey, I'll take what I can get. :) K. Lastochka 16:56, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

International section

(I just read the commented text in the first para of the Aftermath>International subsection.) After reading Tutmosis' points, my motivation for removing the stronger statements was that I just couldn't find a quote from a good reference that could support the first two statements.

The events in Hungary reinforced the inability of the Western alliance to roll back Soviet domination during the height of the Cold War, fearing retaliation by Warsaw Pact forces along their borders. Soviet action had clearly shown that, regardless of national ambitions of the Warsaw Pact client nations, armed force would be used to maintain regimes that reflected Soviet-style communism.

The statements are true, of course, but as an analysis of the events, and therefore could be challenged. What I could find, and tried to say, was that the '56 events in Hungary: 1. made both sides realize that the Cold War in Europe had frozen the areas of influence, and both sides were reduced to propaganda and posturing, and 2. There was no real hope for the Eastern Europe as lomg as the Soviets used force, which is what Dubcek realized at the end, so stay alive for the final round. The paragraph needs some work, so have at it. Ryanjo 23:46, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

I think it's fine, the only problem I had was with "Soviet illusions" (and only because I'm hoping to avoid POV hounds.)K. Lastochka 23:57, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Executed Prisoners

I didn't see this mentioned in the article, so I'll mention it here in case someone else has also heard this. My mom told me more than once that once the Soviets regained control, they looked at pictures of those participating in the revolution in order to execute participants. They also apparently went as far as to imprison those teenagers under 18 until they turned 18 so they could execute them then. If true and a citation is found, could this be added in? It seems noteworthy to me. Andromeda321 02:51, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

And noteworthy to me too. IMHO there is a lot of truth in these stories, at least to a certain extent - crowd photos were always used as evidence, but more to corroborate denunciations than to start investigations. As far as imprisoning kids till they turned 18 so they could be executed - I also heard this but I believe in many cases the authorities had more bullets than patience. Unfortunately, I dont see our being able to add these in as there are many reviewers who would look at the events (even if you had gold-standard evidence) as being POV. Istvan 09:23, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

I agree that we should put something in about the prisoners. Is there ANY way we can without getting stomped?! K. Lastochka 14:55, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

I think we need to hold on new material, especially if it might be thought of as slanted. Ryanjo 15:03, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

...sigh....agreed. :( K. Lastochka 15:10, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Are there really verifiable references for these accusations? I had a hard time coming up with a reference for 26,000 arrests and 13,000 convictions (and if anyone can come up with a better one, it would be appreciated). --Paul 15:11, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

I dont think we can put atrocity stories in for two reasons: verifiable evidence is sparse (and very impeachable) after 10 Nov. and it would be almost impossible to avoid a POV tag - we are soooo close now, best not kick over a new hornets' nest.Istvan 16:14, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Agreed. Forgive us, prisoners... Damn, we really are sooooo close, the suspense is just EATING me!! :) K. Lastochka 16:38, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

haha...speaking of eating, I've just been looking over the first few paragraphs and I keep giggling over the terms "salami tactics" and "goulash communism"! I know they were really terrible times and rotten policies, but the names are just so silly! (Not suggesting a change or anything, just making a random comment.) Yikes, I come here to help with a history article and I end up just craving a big bowl of paprikás csirke. :)

On a serious note, I think we should allow ourselves only a few more hours for last-minute polishing and refining, then we should declare it finished to the best of our ability and leave its fate to....well, fate. We are consumed by a zeal for perfection, which has made us do great things for this article, but there comes a point where we need to quit fiddling and I think that point is approaching soon. K. Lastochka 16:52, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

  1. ^ Internet Modern History Sourcebook: Resolution by students of the Building Industry Technological University: Sixteen Political, Economic, and Ideological Points, Budapest, October 22, 1956 Retrieved 27 August 2006