The paper surveys alternative ways of research on political language use. Taking sides with linguistics-based, quantitative alternatives, the authoress analyses the role of metaphors in political propaganda. Choice of metaphors is an important ingredient of power discourse, especially in periods of dictatorship. Using results of cognitive linguistic approaches, the authoress presents examples from the Hungarian press of the mid-twentieth century and shows how metaphors, constituting the culmination of political communication, were projected to the various areas of life, how they tried to affect people's thinking. The sense networks of the editorials analysed emphasise the negative participant of the BATTLE metaphor, the attacker, forcing opponents of the party-state system into that role. The study of metaphor use, therefore, supports the claim that the metaphor was selected consciously, with pragmatic factors in mind. Its textual function was to establish an emotional link between political power groups (as opposed to dissidents) and the consumers of political propaganda.