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Hungary-The Postrevolutionary Period

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Hungary Index

The HPA underwent a purge after the revolution. Officers were required to sign a declaration condemning the revolution, praising Hungarian-Soviet "friendship," and pledging allegiance to the new government of Janos Kadar. Nearly 20 percent of the officer corps refused to sign the declaration, even under threats, and were expelled from the army. In the year following the revolution, the army was reorganized under Soviet supervision, with increased power given to the political commanders. However, in order to assuage public opinion, the official mission of the army changed from "defending socialism" to defending Hungary.

The HPA became an integral part of the Warsaw Pact forces in 1957 but did not participate in pact military exercises until 1962. The HPA participated, although reluctantly, in the Sovietled Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia in August 1968. In 1989 the Hungarian government revealed that the HPA participated in the invasion because the Kadar regime feared that failure to do so would have halted Soviet exports of raw materials to Hungary.

Through the late 1980s, the HPA and Soviet troops held joint exercises on Hungarian soil twice a year, and Hungarian forces participated in exercises held on the territory of other Warsaw Pact countries. Rarely, however, did forces from the other Warsaw Pact nations conduct military exercises in Hungary.

Data as of September 1989

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