|P E T E R H A R G I T A I
October 23, 1956
For 12 days, countless Hungarian teenagers fought in the bloody Hungarian Revolution
against Communist tyranny and overwhelming Soviet armor. They set up tank barricades,
tossed Molotov cocktails, and with their confiscated Russian submachine guns made a stand
on the streets of Budapest, hoping to hold out until help arrived from the West. But there was
no help. Nobody came to their aid. This is the story of one such brave freedom fighter—a
14 year-old girl.
“For 12 days in 1956, the Hungarian people caught a fleeting glimpse of their independence.
Armed with little more than a love of liberty, the impatient patriots of Hungary rose up
against the mighty Soviet empire. They stormed the jails and they freed political prisoners…
For 12 days, there was hope, but then came the response and it was terrible and ferocious.
Soviet troops and tanks rumbled into Hungary, killing tens of thousands of people and
condemning thousands of others to Siberian gulags.”
U.S. Secretary of State
“We have only one way of being true to Hungary, and that is never to betray, among
ourselves and everywhere, what the Hungarian heroes died for.”
“On the fiftieth anniversary of the Hungarian uprising, Peter Hargitai’s newest novel,
Cheetah, captures the spirit of that time as it follows a 14 year-old schoolgirl turned
revolutionary who takes on the tanks and machine guns of the Soviet Red Army.”
Richard A. Schwartz,
author of Cold War Reference Guide, Cold War Culture,
and a political novel,The Conflicted Liberal