Hungarian Studies Review Vol. 21., 1994

Articles - NANDOR F. DREISZIGER: Emigre Artists and Wartime Politics: The Hungarian-American Council for Democracy, 1943-45

JOHN ROMAN, with the hacking of (he Hungarian section of the Communist Internationa] Workers Order. The Communist clique, which seems to center about John Roman, cloaked most of its agitation under a guise of anti-Fascism, succeeded in winning over a number of neutral figures, and attempted infiltration into the Hungarian beneficial and insurance societies. A. FREE HUNGARY MOVEMENT 328 Fenchley Road London, England 1. COUNT MICHAEL KAROLYI 99 Haverstock Hill London, England Count Michael Karolyi was born in Budapest on March 4th, 1875. (His family is also known as KAROLYI VON NAGY-KAROLYI, according to source 7). Before and during World War I, he was leader of the Opposition in the Hungarian Parliament, and at one time led the Independence Party. Following the collapse of the monarchy, he became Prime Minister, and later President, of the Hungarian Republic (1918-1919). His government fell after the Bolshevist coup d'etat. Since then, he has lived in Czecho-Slovakia, France, and Great Britain, and is at present the leader of the "Free Hungary Movement" in London, England (source 8). A Government agency (1) states that "although Karolyi was probably sincere in his efforts to democratize the country (Hungary) and maintain her territorial integrity, informants here claim that he lacked the courage of his convictions, and attribute the resultant peace treaties to his mild rule and the poor advice of his associates." Before the outbreak of World War II, Count Michael Karolyi in England started collecting his associates in North and South America into his "Free Hungary Movement". RUSTEM VAMBERY and PROFESSOR OSCAR JASZI became his strongest supporters in the United States. (Vambery defended him at his treason trial in Hungary, and Jaszi (8) had been a member of his cabinet.) Communications in CPNY and CNY files reveal that Michael Karolyi has a number of friends who are working with him in this country. Although many of them are identified with individual Hungarian groups, professing a variety of aims and motivated by different considerations, the changing world picture has emphasized the necessity for one recognized leader as spokesman for Hungarian interests. Utilizing the apparent need for a united Hungarian front, source (1) reports that the Communist-controlled group of the Hungarian­American population sponsored a convention in Chicago on June 27th, 1943 to coalize [sic] the Hungarian-American factions under the leadership of Count Karolyi and BELA LUGOSI. This meeting resulted in the formation of the HUNGARIAN-AMERICAN COUNCIL FOR DEMOC­RACY, with Count Karolyi elected as Honorary President. 2. CNY cable files contain messages of greeting and endorsement from the following organizations directed to Count Karolyi as leader of (he Hungarians: INTERNATIONAL WORKERS ORDER Branch 1073-1015, Cleveland, Ohio HUNGARIAN DAILY JOURNAL 413 East 13th Street. New York, New York AMERICAN FEDERATION OF DEMOCRATIC HUNGARIANS ERNEST LORSY. SAMUEL RACZ Cleveland Branch. Cleveland, Ohio