Saturday, March 30, 2019

Hungary for More

Pittsburg (sic) Press, March 25, 1919
As The Great War drew to a close, citizen revolts in the component parts of the multi-ethnic Austro-Hungarian Empire combined with Entente offensives to overthrow Emperor Karl Hapsburg and shatter the empire into pieces. In Hungary, the Aster Revolution led by Miháli Károlyi brought about the Hungarian People's Republic, whose leaders expected his country to include territories of the pre-war Kingdom of Hungary. When, on March 20, 1919, the Entente powers notified the them that Hungary would lose significant territories to Romania, Czechoslovakia, and what would later become Yugoslavia, the Hungarian Prime Minister was forced to resign.
"Why Wait for the Millennium?" by Jay "Ding" Darling in New York Tribune, March 29, 1919
Károlyi called on the Social Democrats to form a new government, unaware that they had secretly entered into a coalition with the "Party of Communists from Hungary" (Kommunisták Magyarországi Pártja). On March 21, the new government declared the Hungarian Soviet Republic. Before long, the Communists purged the Social Democrats from leadership positions; the communist government's de facto leader, Commissar of Foreign Affairs Béla Kun, coordinated policy directly with Vladimir Lenin.
"Turning the Dog Loose" by Cyrus Hungerford in Pittsburgh (sic) Sun, March, 1919
The establishment of a second communist government was cause for alarm in the U.S. and its European allies, but Cy Hungerford's cartoon misses the mark. The Hungarian Soviet Republic was closely allied with Soviet Russia, not with the German government, and hoped for its eastern neighbor to back Hungary's territorial aspirations. Issuing calls for workers of the world to unite against the powers that be, Béla Kun could hardly have cared less about German reparations one way or the other.
"German Measles (Bolshevism)" by John H. Cassel in New York Evening World, March 28, 1919
New York World cartoonist John Cassel blamed the Hungarian situation on the Germans...
"Menetekel beim Länderschmaus" by Arthur Johnson in Kladderadatch, Berlin, April 6, 1919
Meanwhile, in Germany, cartoonist Arthur Johnson blamed it on the Entente powers. In a cartoon mixing biblical references, the handwriting on the wall charges that "Hungary was driven to Bolshevism," while the caption quotes from Psalm 2:10: "So nehmet nun Verstand an, ihr Könige, und lasset euch warnen, ihr Richter der Erde!" (SCH1951; "Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth!" NRSV)
"Das Selbstbestimmungerecht der Völker" by Eduard Thöny in Simplicissimus, April 8, 1919
Bolshevik-inspired revolts rocking Berlin and Munich could only have been encouraged by the new government in Budapest, but establishment voices there were just as alarmed as those of the Entente. I've been trying to figure out whom Eduard Thöny caricatured in the above cartoon, but without success. It doesn't resemble any member of the Kun government; and certainly not Karl Hapsburg, who had been deposed as both Emperor and King. If the guy in the cartoon is supposed to represent 19th-Century Hungarian rebel leader Prince Francis II Rákócsy, he doesn't look much like the guy on the 500 forint bill.
"Dassent Spank Me Now!" by Nelson Harding in Brooklyn Daily Eagle, March 28, 1919
"How Things Are Going" by Percy H. "Poy" Fearon in London Evening News, March, 1919
With the Paris Peace Accords still being hammered out and the League of Nations agreed to only in theory, the Hungarian Soviets' stated intention of reclaiming land the Entente powers had given to Hungary's neighbors, a resumption of war loomed as a likely possibility.
"The Wood-Shed-Switch Cure" by William Hanny in St. Joseph (MO) News-Press, April 1, 1919

"In the Manger" by Burt Thomas in Detroit News, March, 1919
The saying "a dog in the manger" isn't as common these days as it was a century ago; referring to the fable about the dog hoarding the other animals' manger out of spite even though he had no use for the hay himself. I do like the drawing of the horse.
"The Red Peril" by John T. McCutcheon in Chicago Tribune, March 25, 1919
As I mentioned last week, there were a lot of cartoons like John McCutcheon's here. The Red Peril could be a spider, a snake, a back-alley cutthroat, smoke, shadow, or whatever other nightmarish image struck the cartoonist's fancy. I only see most of these cartoons in grayscale images, so I have to wonder whether McCutcheon convinced the Chicago Tribune publisher to run this cartoon in red.
"The Poison Gas Attack" by Ted Brown in Chicago Daily News, March, 1919
But not everybody was alarmed by the Bolshevik takeover of Hungary. Ryan Walker, cartoonist for the socialist New York Call, was delighted.
"Henry Dubb No Longer" by Ryan Walker in New York Call, March 25, 1919

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