Slaying the Gentle Giant


Orange Files photograph of Baba that used without citing the source. 

On January 11, 2016, the on-line tabloid published an article entitled “Serial Criminal Ex-Convict at the Head of Soros’s Hungarian Migrant Organization!” (Börtönviselt, sokszoros bűnöző Soros magyar migráns­szervezetének élén!) regarding Baba, the most prominent volunteer for the Migration Aid non-governmental organization that provided food, clothing and other forms of assistance to tens of thousands of migrants as they passed through Hungary on their way to Germany in the summer and early autumn of 2015 (source in Hungarian).

The article claimed that Migration Aid, which started as a Facebook group in June 2015, was part of a “well developed Soros migrant-assistance network” that “following its establishment immediately received support from the Budapest Soros Foundation.”

The article used the following terms and phrases to describe Baba, an enormous man whom Western media such as The Guardian and the Associated Press dubbed the “Gentle Giant”: “refined criminal”; “serious criminal”; “dyed-in-the-wool swindler”; and “criminal well-known in the underworld.”

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Scenes from the Great Migration 3: the Eastern Railway Station Crisis

Syrian refugees demonstrate outside the Eastern Railway Station in Budapest (photo: Orange Files).

Syrian refugees demonstrate outside the Eastern Railway Station (photo: Orange Files).

On August 23, 2015, Hungarian police removed 150 migrants from a train preparing to depart from the Eastern Railway Station in Budapest to Munich. Over the following 12 days, with the exception of the last day of August, the Orbán government prevented migrants from travelling to Germany via Austria. No officials from any of the three relevant states have yet revealed the reasons for this sudden change in policy after 150,000 migrants had previously been permitted to travel virtually unimpeded through Hungary on their way to Western Europe following their obligatory submission of asylum requests (see Hungary and the Great Migration).

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Below is an Orange Files video from the Eastern Railway Station underpass on a night in early September:


Scenes from the Great Migration 2: the Eastern and Western Railway Stations

Below is a gallery of photographs that Orange Files took of migrants at the Eastern and Western railway stations in Budapest on August 26 and August 27, 2015. The NGO Migration Aid is providing food, medical care and donated clothing, blankets and other assistance to the migrants, who are waiting at the railway stations for trains to Austria or camps in Hungary. More than 150,000 migrants have crossed into Hungary from Serbia since the beginning of the year, including around 3,000 per day beginning in late August. Nearly all of these migrants have subsequently left Hungary en route to western Europe, primarily Germany. The Orbán government and state-run media refer to these migrants, the large majority of whom are from Syria or Afghanistan, as “border violators” (határsértő) or “illegal immigrants” (illegális bevándorló). The government is preparing to send the Hungarian army to the border to help control the growing influx of migrants.

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