Like every Sunday, check out our weekly KafkaDigest press roundup of the best pieces and most insightful articles on Central Europe in international media (note: access to some of them might be restricted to subscribers only). ivan passer milos forman
Hungary’s hard line on immigration softened for some, Balkan Insight
The growing number of foreign guest workers – from Ukrainians to Serbs, Mexicans and Nepalese – needed to plug the labour gap stands in sharp contrast with the Hungarian government’s official hardline stance on immigration.
Central Europe’s authoritarians show where an unleashed Boris Johnson could lead Britain, The New Statesman
“Liberal-minded Brits who look at the Visegrad and say ‘that could never happen here’ are short-sighted and over-certain”, argues Jeremy Cliffe in The New Statesman, warning that the U.K. could very well follow in the footsteps of Central European countries’ authoritarian tendencies.
Milos Forman, Ivan Passer and their 73-year friendship: Childhood, escaping Czechoslovakia and conquering Hollywood, Los Angeles Times
A fascinating long-read by the Los Angeles Times on the friendship between Milos Forman and Ivan Passer, two prominent filmmakers and leaders of the Czech New Wave, who fled Czechoslovakia in 1969 before taking Hollywood by storm.
Trump’s man in Hungary takes foreign policy in new direction, CNN
CNN looks at how controversial U.S. Ambassador to Hungary David Cornstein, a long-time friend of Donald Trump, is putting U.S. foreign interests at risk by modeling his diplomatic style on his boss’s, courting Prime Minister Viktor Orban and downplaying rule of law concerns in Hungary.
Politics of the Polish church scares off believers, Politico
Poland may be a Catholic stronghold and one of the most religious countries in Europe. But Poles are getting increasingly weary of the clergy’s influence on day-to-day politics and close relationship with the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party.
The Hungarian immigrant who funded Disney, Newsweek
After the release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Newsweek takes a look at the life of Margaret Winkler, a Hungarian immigrant woman who came to America from Hungary in 1904, helped establish the Disney brand and “single-handedly funded Walt Disney when he was starting out in Hollywood”.
Mangalica: the hairy Hungarian pig nearly wiped out by communism, The Guardian
Known for being the hairiest, fattiest and one of the tastiest pigs, the Mangalica is now a Hungarian national treasure. Dating back to the early 19th century, its history has been a tumultuous one, reports Shaun Walker for The Guardian.
Auschwitz, the Director’s Cut: How Poland is rewriting the Holocaust narrative, Haaretz
A great read by Haaretz on Poland’s conservative government’s efforts to rewrite the Holocaust narrative, and how this may or may not affect Israel in the near future.
Czech mayors challenge China, Russia from junior ranks, Deutsche Welle
The Czech Republic is becoming a textbook example of how mayors and local officials can disrupt their national government’s foreign policy, and derail what is seen as too accommodating stances towards China and Russia.
Orban’s shepherd, Visegrad Insight
Zoltan Kovacs, Hungary’s notorious state secretary for international communication known for his Twitter ranting, is the main – and one of the only – link between journalists and Orban’s political machinery. What’s his agenda? And how does he compare to another infamous spokesperson from Central Europe, the Czech Republic’s Jiri Ovcacek? A must-read from Visegrad Insight.
Krakow guide: Where to eat, drink, shop and stay in Poland’s second city, The Independent
Are you planning a winter trip to Krakow, Poland’s first tourist destination? This Independent guide is bound to come in handy!
Is Poland Europe’s new furniture-making powerhouse?, Architectural Digest
Already the world’s third-largest furniture exporter after China and Germany, Poland is positioning itself as an impoartant furniture production hub in Europe amid growing trade tensions between the world’s major economic powers.
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