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Sovereignty or Submission
Sovereignty or Submission

Author(s): John O’Sullivan
Subject(s): Politics / Political Sciences
Published by: BL Nonprofit Kft

Summary/Abstract: When Hungary achieved democracy by degrees in 1988–89, the country also regained its national independence. Comecon and the Warsaw Pact unraveled; governments were chosen by national free elections rather than by Soviet influence backed by tanks; government policies reflected national rather than bloc interests. Having regained national sovereignty – which is to the nation what freedom is to the individual – Hungary set about exercising it. Hungary joined NATO, Article 5 of which commits all NATO members to come to the aid of any member under attack. But since Hungary accepted this clear obligation knowingly and freely, it was an exercise rather than a loss of sovereignty. Joining the European Union was a more complex matter. To over-simplify: EU membership commits Hungary to accept and enforce a range of future laws and regulations determined by Brussels even if the nation should be among the minority that voted against them. That is a partial loss of sovereignty. And with the spread of international law, transnational organizations, “legally binding” treaties such as the Kyoto Accords, and the justifying ideology of “global governance”, sovereignty looks likely to continue shrinking fast. Global governance is a revolution in international relations – one as important as the system of sovereign states established by the Treaty of Westphalia.

  • Issue Year: III/2012
  • Issue No: 04
  • Page Range: 5-14
  • Page Count: 10
  • Language: English