István Eskütt

István Eskütt

István Eskütt was born on 16 July 1913 in Nagyperkáta, his father was a non-commissioned officer in the capital. Between 1923 and 1937 he was a member of various scout troops, eventually becoming a troop commander. He graduated from high school in 1932, after which he had to make a living for a long time by doing odd jobs.

Between 1942-1943 he served with the 2nd Army on the Eastern Front. In 1944, he was appointed commander of the spare frame in the I Corps Captured Train Division, and later deputy commander of the I Corps Train Group. However, the corps was disbanded in January 1945.

On February 9, 1945, he was taken prisoner with his seven remaining soldiers at 20 Bertalan Lajos Street, from where he was sent to Budafok without being detained [!]. The next day he reported to the corps fighting on the side of the Soviets, but was not sent into combat. After the siege he stayed behind for a while to nurse the wounded of the unit, visited his parents, then travelled alone by train to Jászberény and joined his unit in the prisoner-of-war camp [!] Fortunately for him, he and his comrades were soon released, and in Austria he was awarded the Soviet Budapest Medal for the Capture of Budapest and in 1950 the gold medal of the Hungarian People's Republic.

In the autumn of 1945 he joined the Hungarian Communist Party, and for a time he was also the party secretary of the basic organisation. In his autobiographies he identified strongly with the system, as he stated in his autobiography that "the Party gave meaning to his life".

From 1947 he served as a lecturer and then head of department in the Military Policy Department, in 1950 he was transferred to the HM Headquarters, later to Baja, and was demobilized in 1953.

At first his comments were only positive, and even in 1952 he had no complaints about his political orientation: 'He hates the enemies of the Soviet Union and of people's democracy, which he emphasises in all his comments. [...] His revolutionary vigilance is good. He takes a firm stand against wrong views and engages in debate." Yet he was not recommended for a higher post because he concealed in his biography the fact that he had enlisted in November 1944 in the Hunyadi Panzer Corps. It is instructive, however, why he did so and how the matter came to light: it was Eskütt himself who said so in response to a question during an election for the party leadership. In addition, he had witnesses to prove that he had only applied to cover himself because his political views had put him in a very exposed position.

In 1958 he was demoted because of his "class alien" origin. There were also allegations that he had been a partisan fighter on the Eastern Front in 1942 (there was no evidence of this and his rank and rank were completely unlikely) and that his brother had briefly been a member of the Arrow Cross party. It was particularly resented that he had not joined the MSZMP. In comparison, his workplace, the State Competition Centre, gave him an all-round good report ('During the counter-revolution he unabashedly stood by the communist ideal'), but the HM was not impressed: he was stripped of his rank in 1958. Eskütt appealed the decision, but the appeal was not upheld.

In 1945 he joined the Hungarian Communist Party, and in 1946 he was the party secretary of the basic organisation for four months.