In 1956, on this day British Prime Minister Anthony Eden was informed that Hungarian Premier Imre Nagy had secretly request refuge at Harmincad utca 6, the address of the British Embassy in Budapest.
Conjoined Crisis Part 1
Imre Nagy requests refugeAs the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the People's Republic of Hungary, he was locked in a power struggle with the Kremlin, and it appeared that his determined opposition to Soviet-imposed policies had ended in failure. He might have expected a sympathetic hearing from the British Government, but there was a major problem that he knew absolutely nothing about. That was that the British Government had secretly signed an agreement with France and Israeli to imminently seize the Suez Canal, and if necessary, eject the troublesome Egyptian President Abdul Gamel Nasser from power.
Therefore, Eden was suddently presented with both a threat, and also an opportunity. Should he assist Nagy, then of course he would be openly accused of the basest of hypocrisy, because his own regime-changing imperial belligerence would appeare so similiar to the Soviets. Because a non-response was itself inconceivable, members of the secret service were pressing him to make the most of this situation by opening negotiations with the Soviets, essentially to betray Nagy in exchange for non-interference in Egpyt. This deal was sweetened as a spheres of influence paradigm, Middle East vs Central Europe and initially, Eden seemed quite opened to such a suggestion.
An article from the Conjoined Crisis thread.