How a Liberal Dissident Became a Far-Right Hero, in Hungary and Beyond

How a Liberal Dissident Became a Far-Right Hero, in Hungary and Beyond Photo No one exemplifies the angry direction of post-communist Eastern Europe more than Prime Minister Viktor Orban of Hungary. He is expected to lead his party to victory in parliamentary elections on Sunday. Credit Laszlo Balogh/Getty Images BUDAPEST — During the final days of communism in Hungary, a young, liberal dissident wrote to a foundation run by the Hungarian-American philanthropist George Soros, asking for a grant to finance his research into grass-roots democracy.
Hungary would soon “transition from dictatorship to democracy,” the student wrote in 1988. “One of the main elements of this transition can be the rebirth of civil society.”
The student was Viktor Orban. Now the prime minister, Mr. Orban is expected to lead his party to victory in parliamentary elections on Sunday — not as the pro-Western statesman he once promised to be, but as a hero to the far-right, a scourge of civil society (and of Mr. So..

Defying Arrest Deadline, Brazil’s Ex-President Dares Police to Come Get Him

Defying Arrest Deadline, Brazil’s Ex-President Dares Police to Come Get Him Photo Supporters of former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil outside the headquarters of the metal workers’ union in São Bernardo do Campo on Friday. The former leader spent Thursday night there as he weighed his response to an arrest warrant. Credit Lalo de Almeida for The New York Times SÃO BERNARDO DO CAMPO, Brazil — Former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil defied a Friday deadline to report to prison to begin serving a 12-year corruption sentence, daring authorities to haul him away from a union headquarters thronged by his supporters.
As the 5 p.m. deadline neared, Mr. da Silva’s supporters counted down the last five seconds. Then they began chanting: “There is no surrender!”
Mr. da Silva’s decision set the stage for a heated confrontation between the most loyal defenders of a polarizing, yet enormously popular politician, and law enforcement officials who regard his imprisonment as..