||Re: Turnip, rutabaga (mind)
|| 11 sor
||Slovak Language Law` (mind)
|| 119 sor
||Re: HAL: Slovak Language Law` (mind)
|| 86 sor
||Slovak Language Law (mind)
|| 158 sor
||Re: Looking for information on " TOROK " name (mind)
|| 17 sor
||Re: Flaming unsolicited sex-site advertisers (mind)
|| 34 sor
|+ - ||Re: Turnip, rutabaga (mind)
At 10:13 PM 8/1/97 -0400, you wrote:
>On Fri, 1 Aug 1997, S or G Farkas wrote:
>However, one of my Hungarian friend insists that they are different. He
>says that one should only use parsley roots in chicken soup, and parsnips
My grandmother was a cook at a hotel in Budapest until 1911. I think the
name was Lendava. She always used parsnips in her chicken soup - a
tradition which I use to this day.
|+ - ||Slovak Language Law` (mind)
Synopsis. The recent edict on yearend school report cards had caused
major uproar within the Hungarian minority. Since the establishment of
Czechoslovakia in 1920, report cards in schools with Hungarian
instruction had been bilingual. The Ministry this year banned the use of
Hungarian translations. One principal had been fired for violating this
edict, many others fear disciplinary action. The edict had been "justified"
on the basis of the Slovak language law, which became effective Jan. '96
and selectively enforced starting Jan. '97. A review of the
applicable paragraphs of the Slovak constitution as well as the 1994
Slovakia-Hungary (ratified) treaty indicates that not only does the report
card edict violate the constitution and the treaty, but most of the language
law itself seems contrary to many of the paragraphs. This does not include
accepted international norms, such as the European Human rights
convention, the European Union's own rules etc. Besides irritating the
Hungarian minority, raising concern with Hungarians as well as Western
authorities, the illegal actions of the Slovak government detracts from its
own credibility, which can impact other fields, such as foreign investment
and credit ratings. The applicable paragraphs of both documents will be e-
mailed on this same distribution separately. What we now need to develop
is an action plan: what to say and where to say it. Your comments are
Both documents clearly permit the use of minority languages not only in
private, but also in official communication. I also need to add, that
compared with the Romania-Hungary bilateral treaty, the "Slovak" is more
specific in spelling out minority rights. Article 34 (2) of the Slovak
constitution (in part); " citizens belonging to national minorities or ethnic
groups also have, under conditions defined by law, a guaranteed
a) right to education in their own language,
b) right to use their language in dealings with the
The bilateral treaty is even more emphatic and specific.
When confronted with these anomalies, the standard "official" Slovak line
is: "you are interfering in our internal affairs." In this regard within
Article (15) of the bilateral treaty we see: "protection of national
minorities and of the rights and freedoms of persons belonging to those
minorities forms an integral part of the international protection of human
rights and as such falls within the scope of international cooperation and,
in this sense, it is therefore not an exclusively domestic affair of the
States concerned but constitute a legitimate concern of the international
community." Could anything be clearer ?
While the constitution does declare Slovak to be the "official language", it
also says that use of "other languages in dealing with the authorities will
be regulated by law". In this regard the "language law" would seem to
restrict many communications to Slovak, the bilateral treaty opens up the
use of Hungarian in no uncertain terms in both "private and official
communications". There may be a conflict between the language law and
the treaty. In this case however the Constitution is quite clear:in case of a
law conflicting with an approved international treaty, the latter (treaty)
prevails.: Art 11: "International treaties on human rights and basic
liberties that were ratified by the Slovak Republic and promulgated in
manner determined by law take precedence over its own laws,
provided that they secure a greater extent of constitutional
rights and liberties. "
Furthermore- as I understand it- the report card edict is of an
administrative nature and not even a law.
It seems clear therefore that both the Slovak parliament and the
administration have disregarded their own commitments, gone back on
their "signed and sealed" words. Is this government by laws ? How about
their own constitution ?
What does all this mean ? Clearly the Hungarian minority is dissatisfied,
Hungarians most everywhere deeply concerned, And how can this
possibly help the Slovak population ? These are not the only
undemocratic practices for which the current government got censured:
by EU officials, by the Slovak President (Kovac) himself. It has cost
Slovakia early entry into NATO as well as the EU. The Meciar
administration blames everybody else for these fiascos, except itself. They
have been told time again by diverse officials, but their attitude seems to
be "everybody is out of step but us."
A recent news item speaks for itself:
U.S. AMBASSADOR MEETS WITH SLOVAK DEPUTY PARLIAMENTARY
CHAIRMAN. Ambassador to Slovakia Ralph Johnson on 30 July met
with Slovak parliamentary deputy chairman Marian Andel, CTK
reported. Andel said Johnson had initiated the meeting in order to
discuss two lectures he gave in Bratislava on 14 July in which he
explained why the U.S. could not support Slovakia as a candidate for
the first round of NATO expansion. The lectures caused an angry
reaction from Slovak government officials. Johnson and Andel also
discussed the case of former deputy Frantisek Gaulieder, who was
stripped by the parliament of his deputy's mandate after he quit
Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar's Movement for a Democratic
Slovakia. The Constitutional Court ruled on 25 July that the
parliament had acted unconstitutionally. Johnson commented that
the U.S. State Department would make an official statement on the
case only after the parliament had make known its position.
Meciar & Co. clearly value certain internal political gains (with the
ultranationalists) over NATO or EU membership. Thus further appeals in
this area may not be persuasive. However if we disregard minority right,
language use issues, there is another fallout. Clearly the government is
suffering from a lack of credibility. If it can disregard its own laws, its
own constitution, then where can it be trusted ? This in turn can have
tangible implications considering foreign investments, credit ratings- all
of which have serious economic fallouts. Any international investor will ask
what the laws are, what the government will do to protect their investment,
can their promises be relied upon ? What is their track record ? Henry
Kissinger's consulting firm is a major player, advising hundreds of business
clients on worldwide opportunities. In a recent interview he was asked where
the blame lies in Slovakia's rejection by NATO and EU. He was unequivocal:
the government has itself to blame.
Action plan ?
So the question is: we have a story, who do we tell it to ? Clearly we can
repeat it to the international political community (Sec. Albright, EU and
NATO officials). But shouldn't we also approach Slovak interest, esp.
emphasizing the credibility and foreign investment angle ? Any Slovak
internet newsgroups ? I would appreciate your thoughts and advice.
|+ - ||Re: HAL: Slovak Language Law` (mind)
Dear Alex Szabo : you wrote:
>In terms of enforcement, what do you mean "selectively enforced"? I am
referring to news reports. It varies by jurisdiction and local
interpretation. One of the interpretation is that Hungarian literature,
recordings, etc. for adults is OK, but not for children, defined as under 14
yrs. Thus the police went through an open air market and tried to confiscate
Hungarian childrens' books. The law is broad, so almost any action can be
>It would seem to me that you have asked the fundumental questions in this
>case. Does international law have a higher degree of teeth than Slovak
Take a good look at my message again. It is the Slovak Constitution itself
which declares that international treaties (ratified by Slovakia) take
precedence. I believe this is standard practice elsewhere, however it is
spelled out in black and white by the Slovaks themselves.
The language law being in conflict with both the constitution and the
treaty (which- in turn is reinforced by another paragraph of the
Constitution), there should be little doubt as to its illegality. I believe
the case is before the Slovak constitutional court, but I don't know the
>And yes I too would be pissed if I were being assimilated by another
>culture. So why aren't we attempting to address the root causes????
The root cause is Slovak nationalism practiced by certain segments, which
Prime Minister Meciar is trying to please. How do you eradicate people's
>>Action plan ?
>>So the question is: we have a story, who do we tell it to ?
You hit the nail on the head. Meciar has been told over and over again why
he wasn't invited into NATO and the EU. He blames it on everyone else, but
himself. He evidently values the political support of those segments more
than NATO or EU.
>Frankly who would be interested on this side of the drink? I can not think
>of any party capable of changing this effort underway by the Slovaks with
>those who are there (supposedly to represent us) now...
There is interest. See the news item about Ralph Johnson (US ambassador)
explaining why Slovakia was blackballed. Their answer is to blame Johnson
(the messenger). Sec. Albright met Meciar a few weeks ago. I have not seen
news items about the meeting, but I bet it was blunt. The problem is that
-unlike with Romania- the carrot of NATO membership seems less important to
Meciar than beating on the Hungarians. (There are other undemocratic
practices blamed on Meciar as well) The EU, Council of Europe, all have made
their position clear.
>>But shouldn't we also approach Slovak interest, esp.
>>emphasizing the credibility and foreign investment angle ?
I think that is an area that has not been touched (that I know of). There
are elections coming up in Slovakia (believe next year) and this could be
good ammo for the opposition.
>There are several rebuttals that they can come up with the justify this.
The most frequent rebuttal is Hungary is interfering in their internal
affairs. However the bilateral treaty says that the minority situation is of
interest to both countries. This is a very crucial point.
>Unless you can't hit 'em economically, we are just engaging teaching the pig
You are right, however anything short of an embargo is long-term and all
Meciar seems to care about is the next election. However thinking Slovaks
should be aware of what their credibility gap could mean.
>>Any Slovak internet newsgroups ?
>Have you ever looked at the following?
No. can you be more specific ?
>Let me know what you think.
See above. I am not a lawyer, but I am convinced the Slovak language law is
indefensible in any independent court of justice.
Tks for your interest. Andy.
|+ - ||Slovak Language Law (mind)
Following and supporting my recent message in the above subject, applicable
paragraphs from the Slovak Constitution and the Hungary-Slovakia bilateral
treaty are listed below. Fyi. Andy.
Paragraphs applicable to minority language parctices from the 1992 Slovak
Constitution and the Slovakia-Hungary bilateral treaty of 1994.
From the Slovak Constitution. Downloaded from the Slovak Academy of
We, the Slovak nation...(are) ..proceeding from the natural right
of nations to self-determination, together with members of national
minorities and ethnic groups living on the territory of the
(1) Slovak is the state language on the territory of the
(2) The use of other languages in dealings with the
authorities will be regulated by law.
International treaties on human rights and basic liberties
that were ratified by the Slovak Republic and promulgated in
a manner determined by law take precedence over its own laws,
provided that they secure a greater extent of constitutional
rights and liberties.
(1) The freedom of speech and the right to information are
(2) Everyone has the right to express his views in word,
writing, print, picture, or other means as well as the right
to freely seek out, receive, and spread ideas and information
without regard for state borders. The issuing of press is
not subject to licensing procedures. Enterprise in the
fields of radio and television may be pegged to the awarding
of an authorization from the state. The conditions will be
specified by law.
(3) Censorship is banned.
(1) The comprehensive development of citizens representing
national minorities or ethnic groups in the Slovak Republic
is guaranteed, particularly the right to develop their own
culture, together with other members of the minority or
ethnic group, the right to disseminate and receive
information in their mother tongue, the right to associate in
national minority associations, and the right to set up and
maintain educational and cultural institutions. Details will
be set out in a law.
(2) In addition to the right to master the state language,
citizens belonging to national minorities or ethnic groups
also have, under conditions defined by law, a guaranteed
a) right to education in their own language,
b) right to use their language in dealings with the
c) right to participate in the solution of affairs concerning
national minorities and ethnic groups.
Applicable paragraphs from the Hungary- Slovakia Bilateral Treaty of 1994
From the HTMH (Hataron Tuli Magyarok Hivatala- Office of Transborder
Hungarians). Forwarded by Magyar Radio.
Note: Frequent reference to Contracting Parties, herein CP
(1) Each..party shall endeavor to preserve the historical and cultural
monuments and memorial sites of the other CP..
The CP shall strengthen the climate of tolerance and understandiung among
their citizens of different ethnic, religious, cultural and linguistic
origin. The CP, in accordance with their obligations under international
law, shall ensure equal and effective protection of rights of every person
on their territories irrespective of race, skin color, sex, language and
religious, political or other conviction or national or social origin.
(1) The CP confirm that protection of national minorities and of the rights
and freedoms of persons belonging to those minorities forms an integral part
of the international protection of human rights and as such falls within the
scope of international cooperation and, in this sense, it is therefore not
an exclusively domestic affair of the States concerned but constitute a
legitimate concern of the international community. The CP recognize that
their cooperation in this field contributes to the strengthening of
good-neighborly relations, mutual understanding, friendship and confidence
between their countries and, at the same time, to the consolidation of
international security, stability and European integration.
(2) The CP, in protecting national minorities and the rights of persons
belonging to those minorities, are guided by the following principles:
(a) membership of a national minority shall be a matter of free personal
choice and no disadvantage shall result from the choice of such membership
(b) all persons belonging to a national minority shall be equal before the
law and have equal protection of the law. In this respect,any discrimination
based on belonging to a national minority shall be prohibited.
(c) persons belonging to national minorities shall have the right,
individually or in a community with other members of their group, to freely
express, maintain and develop their ethnic, cultural, or religious identity
and to maintain and develop their culture in all its aspects.
(d) reaffirming the aims of their general integration policy, the CP shall
refrain from policies and practices aimed at assimilation of persons
belonging to minorities against their will, and shall protect these persons
from any actions aimed at such assimilation. The CP shall refrain from
measures that would alter the proportions of the population in areas
inhabited by persons belonging to national minorities and which aim at
restricting the rights and freedoms of those perwsons that would be to the
detriment of the national minorities.
(e) persons belonging to national minorities shall have the right to
establish and operate, in conformity with their respective legislation and
with the objective of maintaining, development and transfer of their
identity, their own organisations and associations, including political
parties and educational, cultural and religious organisations. Both
Governments shall create legal conditions to this effect.
(f) persons belonging to national minorities shall have the right to take
part effectively at the national, and where appropriate, at the regional
level, in the decisions affecting the minorities or the regions inhabited by
minorities, in the manner which is not incompatible with domestic legislation.
(g) persons belonging to the Hungarian minority in the Slovak Republic and
those belonging to the Slovak minority in the Republic of Hungary shall have
the right to use freely , individually or in community with other members of
their group, orally or in writing, to use their mother tongue in public or in
private life. They shall also have the right, in conformity with other
members of their group, orally or in writing, their mother tongue in
contacts with official authorities,including public administration and in
judicial proceedings. They shall also have the right, in confomity with the
domestic law and with the international commitments undertaken by the two
CP, to display in their mother tongue the name of municipalities in which
they live, street names and names of other public areas, topographical
indications, inscriptions and information in public areas, to register and
use of their first names and surnames in this language, to have- without
prejudice- in addition to the learning of the official language or the
teaching in this language- adequate opportunities in the framework of the
State educational system for being taught their mother tongue or for
receiving instruction in their mother tongue and the right of access to
public mass media without discrimination and the right to their own media.
The CP, in accordance with their international commitments, shall take all
the necessary legal, administrative and other measures for the
implementation of the aformentioned rights unless their respective domestic
law already contains such provisions.
(h) in accordance with point (c) of this paragraph they shall create the
necessary conditions enabling the persons belonging to national minorities to
preserve their material and architectural memorials and memorial sites
constituting their natural heritage, history and traditions.
(3) The CP agree that the same rights and duties flowing from their
citizenship shall be applied to the persons belonging to national minorities
shall as to any other citizens of the State concerned.
|+ - ||Re: Looking for information on " TOROK " name (mind)
In article >,
>Jack Niner wrote:
>> I am looking for relatives ... ancestors ... name background on my
>> maiden name "TOROK".
>I think there should be dots over the o's i the name, tvrvk. It means
>"greek", but that's all I know.
>The umlauts are correct. However. it doesn't mean "Greek", it means
Turkish. And it is quite a common surname in Hungary. There is a couple
here in Toronto with that name too, Torok Jancsi and Vera.
|+ - ||Re: Flaming unsolicited sex-site advertisers (mind)
In article >, S or G Farkas
>Use Eudora Pro (or another e-mail program with filtering capabilities).
>filters to look for certain words in the headers (or the body) of the
>e-mail, such as "get rich", "phone sex", etc., etc., and direct them
>straight to the trash. As the spammers get more innovative, keep adding
>Gabor D. Farkas
Unfortunately, they seem to have already figured out a way around this
little road block. Many of the sex adverts spammed to me now have an
innocuous header like "Hi, Bob" or something similar that doesn't have
anything to do with the horizontal bop. My advice is to just forward these
things on to Joe Szalai's e-mail address, just as I do.
P.S. -- We weren't bothered by the sex spammers until very recently. I
wonder what changed?
P.S.S. -- I recently read a description somewhere of Budapest being "the
Bangkok of Central Europe" when it came to the temptations of the flesh.
Any truth to this or is it simply good marketing?
"Only a redeemed mankind
receives the fullness of its
past -- which is to say, only
for a redeemed mankind has
its past become citable in all
-- Walter Benjamin