People's Patriotic Front

People’s Patriotic Front

 

(PPF; Hazafias Népfront), an organization founded in Hungary in 1954. Its origins go back to the antifascist Hungarian Front (HF), which was created in May 1944 on the initiative of the Communists and included the Social Democratic Party (SDP), the Smallholders’ Party (SP), and the Legitimists; in November 1944 these organizations were joined by the National Peasant Party (NPP).

On Dec. 2, 1944, a political union of the antifascist democratic forces of Hungary was created in the city of Szeged, on Hungarian territory liberated by the Soviet Army. This new political union, which replaced the HF, was called the Hungarian National Independence Front (HNIF) and included the Hungarian Communist Party (HCP), the SDP, the SP, the NPP, the Bourgeois-Democratic Party, and trade unions. The front expanded the struggle for democratic reforms and for restoration of the country’s economy. When the building of socialism began, the HNIF was reorganized (February 1949) as the Hungarian Popular Independence Front (HPIF), comprising the Hungarian Workers’ Party (HWP), the SP, the NPP, and the All-Hungarian Council of Trade Unions and Social Organizations.

In 1954 the HPIF became the People’s Patriotic Front; its goal was to involve all working classes and social strata of the country in the building of socialism and to assist in the formation of socialist national unity among the people. During the counterrevolutionary revolt of 1956 in Hungary, domestic reactionaries attempted to use the People’s Patriotic Front for their own aims. Since 1957 the PPF has operated under the leadership of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party. The front actively participates in the building of an advanced socialist society, in the holding of elections, and in the preliminary drafting of laws and decrees. The committees of the PPF, which include regional, city, rural, and—in the capital—precinct and district committees, number 3,500 and collaborate closely with local councils. The committees have the right to nominate candidates for the posts of chairmen of the councils.

In 1972 the fifth congress of the PPF adopted a resolution to increase the activity of the PPF in building socialism in Hungary. The sixth congress of the PPF, held in 1976, emphasized the front’s duty to unite the creative forces of the people and to strengthen socialist national unity under the leadership of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party (HSWP) with the aim of achieving the great goal of building the advanced socialist society put forth by the 11th congress of the HSWP.

There is no individual membership in the PPF, which unites social organizations and cultural institutions, including the All-Hungarian Peace Council, the All-Hungarian Council of Women, the Society for Hungarian-Soviet Friendship, and the Hungarian Committee for Solidarity. The chairman of the All-Hungarian Council of the PPF is G. Kállai, and the secretary-general is I. Sarlós (since 1974). The PPF publishes the newspaper Magyar Nemzet.

A. I. PUSHKASH [18–1827–1; updated]

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