communists, however, the People's Front simply became a front organization. It was a mass group whose tasks included the fostering of "proletarian internationalism," that is, the dedication of Hungarians to the cause of world revolution led by the Soviet Union.
When Imre Nagy (see Nagy, Imre) came into power in 1954, he was able to use the National People's Front as an instrument in trying to curb the powers of the state and party bureaucracies. He was not successful because the front's leaders were communist bureaucrats who were loyal to Nagy's opponents. Yet the National People's Front eventually served as a forum for outspoken communist reformers during the mid- and late 1980s. By then, the president of the front was Imre Pozsgay (see Pozsgay, Imre) and he skillfully used his organization to prod the leadership toward reform. When the communist system collapsed, however, the Patriotic People's Front disappeared together with the other communist front organizations.
Kovrig Bennett, Communism in Hungary from Kun to Kadar ( Stanford, CA, 1979).
Peace Treaty of 1947 with Hungary. A Hungarian state delegation was summoned to Paris in the summer of 1947 to sign a peace treaty with the victorious Allies; however, the "treaty" that was presented to the Hungarians was not a treaty at all. It was the collection of decisions that had been arrived at by the four Allies after they had listened to spokesmen of the Successor States for advice. The Hungarians tried to challenge some of the harsher provisions of the proposal but in vain. The peace treaty returned all territories awarded by Germany and Italy to Hungary in 1938-1941 to their previous states. This meant the restoration of the Trianon borders of Hungary with the loss of about 3 million ethnic Hungarians. Hungary was also required to pay hundreds of millions of dollars worth of future products in reparations to the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia; with the dismantled factories and other equipment carried away by the Soviet army, the peace treaty presented a tremendous burden for the postwar Hungarian state.
Kertesz Stephen D., Between Russia and the West. Hungary and The Illusion of Peacemaking 1945-1947 ( Notre Dame, IN, 1993); Romsics Ignac, Wartime American Plans for a New Hungary: Documents from the U.S. Department of State, 1942-1944 ( New York, 1992).
Pocspetri Case in Hungary (1949). When the newly established communist government ordered the confiscation and nationalization of all church schools, there were some open expressions of discontent with the decree. In the village of Pocspetri in southern Hungary, several hundred citizens demonstrated against the decree. The mob surrounded a policeman whose gun was accidentally fired and he shot himself. The policeman in question was a communist. Next day, several hundred police, led by Laszlo Rajk (see Rajk, Laszlo), then minister of the interior, surrounded the village and arrested about a hundred inhabitants. These were brutally tortured, until they "ad-