Kate Maltby

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Balint Porneczi/AFP via Getty Images. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán listening to a parliamentary debate on the Treaty of Trianon anniversary, Budapest, Hungary, June 4, 2010

At 4:30 PM local time on Thursday June 4, the church bells will toll in Budapest. Citizens are asked to stop work, stand, and bow their heads for a minute’s silence. Opposition politicians will quietly walk together, at an appropriate social distance, to a site of national memorial, while the domineering Hungarian prime minister, Viktor Orbán, and the country’s largely-ceremonial president, János Áder, will give nationally televised addresses.

None of this has anything to do with the coronavirus. At time of writing, 532 people are reported to have died of the disease in Hungary, but there will be other moments to mourn them.…  Seguir leyendo »

When I was 16 years old, I joined Republic, the British organization which campaigns to abolish the monarchy. Americans, it has always seemed to me, got this one right in 1776. Why afford political power and taxpayer-funded luxury to a bunch of people on the basis of their bloodline? This is the digital age, not Game of Thrones.

So, when the first news reports began to surface on Wednesday that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex would be quitting the royal family, I wanted to cheer for them. In February of last year, I wrote a piece for CNN arguing that the two should quit.…  Seguir leyendo »

In 2006, Prince Andrew invited Jeffrey Epstein to the 18th birthday party of his daughter Beatrice. Andrew didn't know, he claims, that an arrest warrant had been issued for Epstein earlier that year for sexual assault of a minor -- because Epstein had never mentioned it to him. (Even though the British royal family have numerous staff who vet guests.)

It hadn't been reported in the British press. How was a Prince to know?

That is just one of the excuses Prince Andrew offered the British people on Saturday night. In an extraordinary BBC TV interview recorded on Thursday, the Queen of England's second-born son attempted to defend his relationship with the convicted sex abuser.…  Seguir leyendo »

Guardian columnist Owen Jones is confronted by right-wing protesters after attending a demonstration in central London on January 12.

Something nasty is happening on the grounds of London's Palace of Westminster. And I don't mean the latest horse-trading over Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit legislation.

No, the latest crisis to hit Britain's political culture manifests in a much more tangible form. In recent weeks, an upsurge of "anti-elitist" protest has seen the violent harassment of members of Parliament and commentators while they film interviews outside Parliament. The activity is focused on a public strip of park, known as "College Green", which lies just a few steps outside the main gates of the Houses of Parliament and is traditionally used for broadcast interviews.…  Seguir leyendo »