Fifteen years holed up in an embassy
2012-09-06 0:00

By Alex Last | BBC World Service

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has said he may remain in the Ecuadorean embassy in London for up to a year - but even that would leave him far short of the record holder, a Hungarian cardinal who spent 15 years in the US embassy in Budapest.

The Cold War drama began in the cold pre-dawn of 4 November 1956. An anti-communist uprising was under way, but the head of the Catholic Church in Hungary, Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty, had just learned of the arrival of Soviet troops in the city to put it down. He faced a stark choice - flight or arrest.

Imprisoned by the pro-Nazi authorities during World War II, Cardinal Mindszenty had then become an outspoken critic of the post-war communist government. As a result, he had spent eight years in prison on treason charges. He had been freed only a few days earlier by the anti-government forces involved in the uprising.

He decided to flee.

Not far away, at the American legation, Sgt Gerald Bolick, a US Marine guard, was finishing his morning rounds when he looked out of the window and saw four people approaching: two in army uniforms and two in clerical black. "I saw that one was Cardinal Mindszenty," he says.

"I ran up to talk to my detachment commander, and said ’The cardinal’s on his way to our legation, what should I do?’ He said, "Do your duty.’ So I did an about-face, ran back down the stairwell, and opened up the door."

At around the same time, Bolick says, the legation received a coded message from Washington: "’If the cardinal shows up, give him shelter’ was the gist."

But for Bolick and the small team of US Marines responsible for protecting the legation, there was a new problem.

"The Soviets had taken over Magyar radio. They broadcast that they were going to come to our legation and take the cardinal away. And that would happen at high noon."

[...]



Cardinal Mindszenty worked on his memoirs during 15 years of political asylum in the US embassy





Read the full article at: bbc.co.uk











The Venerable József Mindszenty (29 March 1892 – 6 May 1975) was a cardinal of the Catholic Church as the Archbishop of Esztergom in Hungary.

He supported Church freedom. He was an opponent of communism and the Stalinist persecution in his country. As a result, he was tortured and given a life sentence in a 1949 show trial that generated worldwide condemnation, including a United Nations resolution.

Freed in the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, he was granted political asylum and lived in the U.S. embassy in Budapest for 15 years.

He was finally allowed to leave the country in 1971. He died in exile in 1975 in Vienna, Austria.
Source





Related Articles
József Mindszenty - Wikipedia
Assange: Sweden May Drop Case "due to an unusual world occurrence that we can’t predict"
Julian Assange has reason to fear US extradition
Julian Assange: Global Chess Game or Controlled Opposition?


Latest News from our Front Page

Boris Nemtsov, Putin Foe, Is Shot Dead in Shadow of Kremlin - A Staged Shooting?
2015-02-28 22:37
NY Times: Boris Nemtsov, Putin Foe, Is Shot Dead in Shadow of Kremlin Mr. Nemtsov, a former first deputy prime minister of Russia, was killed in central Moscow in the highest-profile assassination in Russia during the tenure of President Vladimir V. Putin. A Staged Shooting? ... Why does the dead body of fitness enthusiast Boris Nemtsov have a pot belly? The Anti-New York Times doesn't ...
Holocaust, Hate Speech and Were the Germans so Stupid?
2015-02-28 20:31
Description form YouTube: This is an updated version of the video which was taken down by YouTube following a spurious copyright-infringement claim. It addresses issues regarding claims that Zyklon B in liquid form gives off fumes at temperatures below 0ş C. As the world approaches the brink of a new Middle East crisis this time involving Syria, clearly at the behind-the-scenes ...
The Jewish Roots of Leonard Nimoy and What the ‘Live Long and Prosper’ Hand Symbol Really Means
2015-02-28 0:20
Leonard Nimoy first saw what became the famous Vulcan salute, “live long and prosper,” as a child, long before “Star Trek” even existed. The placement of the hands comes from a childhood memory, of an Orthodox Jewish synagogue service in Boston. The man who would play Spock saw the gesture as part of a blessing, and it never left him. “Something ...
Baby born still INSIDE his amniotic sac is hailed a ‘medical miracle’ by doctors [Video]
2015-02-27 22:46
What an incredible miracle… Not only was the little boy three months early – he was born inside his amniotic sac. I’ve never heard of this happening before. If you look at the picture, you can see him clearly with his little arms and legs curled up. He was still being given oxygen by his mom until the sac was ...
California Infant Dies after 8 Vaccines, Family Gets Him Back from Hospital Cremated
2015-02-27 21:55
Parents in California are distraught after losing their infant son after being vaccinated. He died in his sleep and was taken to the hospital already deceased. Hospital staff ruled his death as sudden infant death syndrome. The couple was told an autopsy was required to be performed on their son. After returning home, waiting to get an update, they never received ...
More News »