On November 16 and 17, 2023, I had the pleasure of visiting Budapest at the invitation of the Otto de Hasbourg-Lorraine Foundation. One of the most illustrious and influential Europeans of the last century, Otto de Hasbourg-Lorraine was the last Emperor of Austria and King of Hungary and Bohemia. A great humanist and internationalist, he resisted the Nazis, was a member of the European Parliament and spoke ten languages fluently.
He bequeathed his immense documentary collections to the Foundation, which has begun a formidable task of deciphering them. The debates I took part in at the Université du Service Public with ministers and former ministers - on Europe's competitiveness and the current challenges of European construction - gave me a better understanding of the country's mindset, far removed from the usual stereotypes.
This is what I underline in the interview below, when I talk about the suspension of EU aid to Hungary, but also about the dangers of the Islamization of the continent versus the universalism of the Enlightenment, the number-one challenge facing democracies around the world, particularly in Europe.