Using a comment as a post is perhaps a bit odd, but Eszter Hargittai published a thought-provoking observation about the Hungarian uprising on Crooked Timber and this is a – far too long – comment that I wrote. I have corrected spelling errors and added a few extra observations:In Denmark, the spring of 1956 saw a major labour market conflict which the then leader of the Danish Communist Party, Aksel Larsen, used very skilfully to enhance his position and the position of his party. The DCP had won some political support during the later part of the German occupation but lost most of it again in the early cold war-era so gaining credibility as defenders of workers’ rights would be one way back to political relevance.Here, you should know that Danish – as indeed all Scandinavian – Social Democrats and trade unions were fiercely anti-communist (they ran propaganda and intelligence offices directed against Communists in the trade unions and when I read about the 1950s I almost get the impression that the Communists were the real political enemy) and the prospect of a strong Communist presence in the trade unions was seen as a real threat by leading trade unionists and Social Democrats.But just as they were on a political roll, Larsen and the Communists were hit by a disaster: The Hungarian uprising (Nikita Khrushchev’s anti-Stalinist speech predated the labour market conflict and had already spread doubts among a number of leading Danish Communists).Even when you leave aside the anti-Communist element, many Danes would find it easy to identify with the Hungarians: Small country (think: Denmark) being suppressed by big-power neighbour (think: Germany). Since 1940 Danes had been agonising endlessly over the handling of the German occupation – and they still are.The Hungarian uprising was also the first mass-televised international event and aid for Hungarian refugees was organised through public radio and tv.But back to the Communists: Their hopes of gaining a mass following were effectively destroyed after Hungary. In 1957, Aksel Larsen was expelled from the DCP and in 1959 founded an independent Socialist Party which has been an integral part of Danish politics since the 1960 election. In an international comparison, Denmark has always had a very strong non-Communist left wing since 1960: Leftist Social Democrats found a Socialist party more acceptable than a Communist.In a European context one might say that the question of Euro-Communism was “solved” in Denmark following the Hungarian uprising. (The Swedish Left Party is still agonising about its Communist past and only shed the label “Communist” in 1990, so there was nothing automatic about the process – but then the Swedish political history during the 1940s and 1950s also differs from the Danish). Except for a minor revival during the 1970s, the DCP faded into oblivion following the founding of the Socialist Party.Of cause the Hungarian uprising didn’t cause the realignment on the Danish left but it – or rather: the way it was interpreted and used in the political debate – is an integral part of Danish political history in the 1950s which has also had lasting effects.Sorry about the lecture but the point is: Given the right circumstances, political events in one country can have effects in another. But it’s a strange irony that Danes would probably have a more intimate relationship with the Hungarian uprising than the Hungarians do.