Hungary Building Freedoms Out of Defeat

Janos Kadar has transformed his country

The year was 1956. On Nov. 4, 200,000 Soviet troops and hundreds of tanks stormed Hungary to crush a daring and bloody uprising, the most direct challenge to Moscow's postwar hegemony over Eastern Europe before or since. Suicide squads lobbed Molotov cocktails, paving stones and sticks at the invaders. Hungarian patriots, some as young as 13, were cut down in hails of automatic gunfire. Their bodies were added to piles of unburied corpses, dusted with lime, that littered the city. Soviet tanks blasted the facades off downtown buildings trying to stop sniper fire from upper windows. In scarcely more than a...

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