October 23 is a national holiday in Hungary. On this day, Hungarians commemorate the 1956 uprising against Soviet domination which was led by students who wanted to change the political system. When the Soviet Union occupied Hungary after WWII and the Soviet-backed Hungarian communists won the election, the Soviet Union placed a new coat of arms with a communist red star and hammer on the Hungarian flag.
On October 23, 1956 Hungarians gathered in Budapest to show support for the anti-Soviet protest in Poznan, Poland. The Hungarian demonstration grew and grew until it shifted from showing support for the Poles to an expression of non-support for the Soviets. At sometime during the demonstration, someone cut the Soviet-imposed emblem out of the Hungarian flag. The Flag-with-the-Hole became one of the most indelible images of the 1956 Revolution and today stands as a powerful symbol for freedom. Do you or your family have a remembrance of ’56? If so, please share.