Former Anti-Semite Turned Jew To Speak in Montreal Despite Protests

Csanad Szegedi Helped Lead Neo-Fascist Jobbik Party Before Discovering Jewish Roots

By JTA

Published December 01, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

A speech in Montreal by a Hungarian one-time neo-fascist will proceed despite attempts to have the invitation rescinded.

Csanad Szegedi, 31, a leading figure in Hungary’s neo-fascist Jobbik party for a decade who was known for his rabid anti-Semitism, was invited to speak in Montreal on Dec. 9 by a local branch of Chabad, according to the Canadian Jewish News.

When Szegedi discovered in 2011 that he has a maternal Jewish grandmother, who was an Auschwitz survivor, the Jobbik party ousted him and he made contact with Chabad representatives in Hungary.

Last month, a local Hungarian-Jewish Holocaust survivor, Paul Herczeg, and fellow countryman Peter Sipos, spent 90 minutes meeting with Chabad of Westmount leader Rabbi Yossi Shanowitz in an attempt to disinvite Szedegi, to no avail, the Canadian Jewish News reported.

Szegedi’s detractors charge that his denunciation of Jobbik is insincere and that he only embraced his Jewish identity after he tried, and failed, to suppress the news through bribery.

Sipos told the newspaper that Szegedi would be far more credible if he publicly condemned his one-time fascism in the European Parliament, where he sits as a member.

Chabad points out that Szegedi has proved himself by undergoing ritual circumcision and following Jewish practices.”Today, despite many attempts to discredit him, Mr. Szegedi, a member of the European Parliament, has dedicated himself to speak out against facism and anti-Semitism in Hungary and Eastern Europe,” reads Chabad of Westmount’s website.

His talk is entitled, “My Journey From Hater to Fighter of Hatred.”


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • PHOTOS: Hundreds of protesters marched through lower Manhattan yesterday demanding an end to American support for Israel’s operation in #Gaza.
  • Does #Hamas have to lose for there to be peace? Read the latest analysis by J.J. Goldberg.
  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.