Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán delivered a powerful opening speech at the two-day Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Budapest, ending with a bold call to arms against the West’s left-wing liberal elites. Orbán, a staunch conservative, addressed over 600 attendees with a rousing ‘May the 4th be with us’, in reference to International Star Wars Day, which was on the same day (4 May). The CPAC, originally from the United States and supported by the conservative wing of the Republican Party since 1974, is now being attended by high-ranking officials from conservative parties throughout Europe and the US.
Guests entering the conference centre had to walk through a portal with the words ‘No woke Zone’ emblazoned across it, summarizing the primary message that all speakers shared. Orbán, the leader of Hungary’s Fidesz Party, has taken a firm stance, declaring that the West is in the midst of a fundamental cultural war. Political parties, including the German mainstream CDU (Christian Democratic Union), once allies of Orbán’s Fidesz party, are now executing the woke agenda of LGBTQ and gender ideologies. Orbán said that we are under attack and Western societies are being hit by a ‘virus’ – an ideological virus developed in ‘liberal-progressive labs’ to target the West’s crucial ‘weak spot’: the nation. ‘The woke movement and gender ideology are exactly what communism and Marxism used to be’, he stated. ‘They artificially cut the nation into minorities in order to spark strife among the groups.’
‘They want to pulverise the nation. The nation is the Achilles’ heel of the West. The nation is the basis of freedom – without the nation, people become pawns of global elites’, Orbán passionately stated. According to Viktor Orbán, the ideological virus that plagues the West manifests itself in various forms, such as migration, wokeness, and gender ideology. These three elements are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the destructive nature of liberalism. However, despite Hungary’s relatively small size and limited resources, it has become a beacon of hope for conservatives around the world, serving as the nucleus of the resistance against the liberal establishment. Orbán’s message is clear: Hungary may be small, but it packs a powerful punch, and it is more than capable of standing up against the globalist elites and their insidious agenda.
Orbán declared that the reconquest of Europe has begun, and conservative governments are at the forefront of the charge. According to Orbán, Hungary, Poland, and Italy, with Giorgia Meloni leading the way, are leading the charge against the woke liberal elites. He also mentioned that Israel has joined the fight, with Spain next on the list. In 2024, the EU election will be a crucial battleground, and Orbán is confident that he and his allies will be able to drain the Brussels swamp. The speech was met with thunderous applause and cheers from the audience. Orbán’s bold vision of a Europe free from the shackles of globalist liberalism has energized conservatives across the continent.
While some attendees at the CPAC conference were divided on their position towards the Ukraine conflict and Russia, Viktor Orbán surprisingly steered clear of the topic in his speech. Instead, he focused on criticising Brussels’ meddling in the foreign policies of nation-states and emphasised Hungary’s commitment to a consistent ‘peace policy’. However, Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili did call for support for Ukraine in its struggle against what he referred to as ‘Russian aggression’. Orbán’s decision to avoid the Ukraine conflict is seen as a wise move by some conservative media since it is a sensitive topic that could potentially spark tension among attendees and detract from the main objective of the conference.
Former US President Donald Trump made an unexpected appearance, delivering a powerful message via video. Despite not being listed as a speaker or guest, Trump’s presence was felt as his pre-recorded clip was played at the start of the second day. In his address, he praised Orbán as a ‘tremendous leader’, and emphasised the importance of the conservative movement’s role in the ongoing ‘historic battle with the Marxist globalists and communists all over the world’. He added that ‘we’re fighting against barbarians who want to demolish our liberty and our traditions and everything we hold dear’. Trump’s appearance at the CPAC sends a clear message that he is still a leading figure in the conservative movement and is ready to support like-minded leaders, such as Orbán, in their efforts to uphold traditional values and fight back against the radical Left.
Popular conservative commentator Tucker Carlson, who was recently ousted from Fox News for daring to speak his mind, delivered a message via video. in which he said, ‘Greetings to CPAC Hungary and all you Americans in the audience. You are very brave. You’ve landed up on one of [U.S. Agency for International Development chief] Samantha Power’s list; the State Department is keeping track! You went to a forbidden country! I wish I was there in Budapest. If I ever get fired and have some time and can leave, I will be there with you. But in the meantime, God speed.’
One of the most talked about speeches at the CPAC conference came from Kari Lake, a Republican from Arizona who was a hair’s breadth away from winning the gubernatorial race against Democrat Katie Hobbs last year. Lake, who is rumored to be a potential vice-presidential candidate if Donald Trump wins the 2024 election, delivered a scorching indictment of the United States’ policies towards Ukraine, highlighting the $170 billion spent on supporting the country while drug cartels flood in through the country’s porous southern border. She called for an immediate halt to aid and urged Russian President Putin and Ukrainian President Zelensky to sit down and negotiate an end to the ongoing conflict.
But it was not just the speeches that had many observers on edge. There are growing concerns about the future of the conservative movement, both in Europe and beyond. As right-wing parties grapple with the tension between pragmatic realpolitik and fundamentalist positions, many are struggling to find a way forward. The AfD (Alternative for Germany), for instance, was only represented by a handful of second-tier members, with their lack of government access making them less attractive to other parties. As the conference drew to a close on Friday night, many were left wondering what the future holds for the conservative movement and whether it can find a way to reconcile its different factions and chart an effective course forward.