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A Shockingly Candid View Of Life In Austria During The Semicentennial Observance Of The Anschluss, The March 12, 1938 Annexation Of Austria By Nazi Germany, An Event Simultaneous With The Allegations Of Nazi War Crimes Against Then-Prime Minister Of Austria Kurt Waldheim, With Both Forming A Background To The Sometimes Disturbing And Often Frightening Thoughts And Feelings Of Austrians Of The Day, A Story Told With The Assistance Of Maximilian Schell And Others, Presented In The Highest DVD Quality MPG Video Format Of 9.1 MBPS As An Archival Quality All Regions Format DVD, MP4 Video Download Or USB Flash Drive! (Color, 1989, 1 Hour 15 Minutes.) #Anschluss #KurtWaldheim #Semicentennials #Austria #MaximilianSchell #AustriaDuringWWII #ThirdReich #NaziGermany #Germany #Nazification #NazificationOfAustria #Gleichschaltung #EuropeanTheatreOfWWII #WorldWarII #WWII #WW2 #WorldWarTwo #WorldWar2 #SecondWorldWar #EuropeanCivilWar #DVD #VideoDownload #MP4 #USBFlashDrive
Vienna (Austrian German: Wien; Austro-Bavarian: Wean) is the national capital, largest city, and one of nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's most populous city, with about 2 million inhabitants (2.6 million within the metropolitan area, nearly one third of the country's population), and its cultural, economic, and political center. It is the 6th-largest city by population within city limits in the European Union. In 1938, after a triumphant entry into Austria, the Austrian-born German Chancellor Adolf Hitler spoke to the Austrian Germans from the balcony of the Neue Burg, a part of the Hofburg at the Heldenplatz. In the ensuing days the new Nazi authorities oversaw the harassment of Viennese Jews, the looting of their homes, and their on-going deportation and murder. Between 1938 (after the Anschluss) and the end of the Second World War in 1945, Vienna lost its status as a capital to Berlin, because Austria ceased to exist and became part of Nazi Germany. On April 2 1945, the Soviet Red Army launched the Vienna Offensive against the Germans holding the city and besieged it. British and American air-raids, as well as artillery duels between the Red Army and the SS and Wehrmacht, crippled infrastructure, such as tram services and water- and power-distribution, and destroyed or damaged thousands of public and private buildings. The Red Army was helped by an Austrian resistance group in the German Wehrmacht. The group tried under the code name Radetzky to prevent the destruction and fighting in the city. Vienna fell eleven days later. At the end of the war, Austria again became separated from Germany, and Vienna regained its status as the capital city of the Republic of Austria, but the Soviet hold on the city remained until 1955, when Austria regained full sovereignty. After the war, Vienna was part of Soviet-occupied Eastern Austria until September 1945. As in Berlin, Vienna in September 1945 was divided into sectors by the four powers: the US, the UK, France, and the Soviet Union and supervised by an Allied Commission. The four-power occupation of Vienna differed in one key respect from that of Berlin: the central area of the city, known as the first district, constituted an international zone in which the four powers alternated control on a monthly basis. The atmosphere of four-power Vienna is the background for Graham Greene's screenplay for the film The Third Man (1949). Later he adapted the screenplay as a novel and published it. Occupied Vienna is also depicted in the 1991 Philip Kerr novel, A German Requiem. The four-power control of Vienna lasted until the Austrian State Treaty was signed in May 1955. That year, after years of reconstruction and restoration, the State Opera and the Burgtheater, both on the Ringstrasse, reopened to the public. The Soviet Union signed the State Treaty only after having been provided with a political guarantee by the federal government to declare Austria's neutrality after the withdrawal of the allied troops. This law of neutrality, passed in late October 1955 (and not the State Treaty itself), ensured that modern Austria would align with neither NATO nor the Soviet bloc, and is considered one of the reasons for Austria's delayed entry into the European Union in 1995. In the 1970s, Austrian Chancellor Bruno Kreisky inaugurated the Vienna International Center, a new area of the city created to host international institutions. Vienna has regained much of its former international stature by hosting international organizations, such as the United Nations (United Nations Industrial Development Organization, United Nations Office at Vienna and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime), the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, the International Atomic Energy Agency, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
The Anschluss (German: "Joining", "Annexation"), also known as the Anschluss Osterreichs ("Annexation Of Austria), was the annexation of Austria into Nazi Germany on March 12, 1938. The idea of an Anschluss (a united Austria and Germany that would form a "Greater Germany") began after the unification of Germany excluded Austria and the German Austrians from the Prussian-dominated German Empire in 1871. Following the end of World War I with the fall of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, in 1918, the newly formed Republic of German-Austria attempted to form a union with Germany, but the Treaty of Saint Germain (10 September 1919) and the Treaty of Versailles (28 June 1919) forbade both the union and the continued use of the name "German-Austria" (Deutschosterreich); and stripped Austria of some of its territories, such as the Sudetenland. Prior to the Anschluss, there had been strong support from people of all backgrounds in both Austria and Germany for unification of the two countries. In the immediate aftermath of the dissolution of the Habsburg Monarchy - with Austria left as a broken remnant, deprived of most of the territories it ruled for centuries and undergoing a severe economic crisis - the idea of unity with Germany seemed attractive also to many citizens of the political Left and Center. Had the victors of World War I allowed it, Austria would have united with Germany as a freely taken democratic decision. But after 1933, when the Austrian-born Adolf Hitler rose to power in Germany, desire for unification could be identified with the Nazis, for whom it was an integral part of the Nazi "Heim Ins Reich" ("Back Home") concept, which sought to incorporate as many Volksdeutsche (ethnic Germans outside Germany) as possible into a "Greater Germany". Nazi Germany's agents cultivated pro-unification tendencies in Austria, and sought to undermine the Austrian government, which was controlled by the Austrofascist Fatherland Front. During an attempted coup in 1934, Austrian chancellor Engelbert Dollfuss was assassinated by Austrian Nazis. The defeat of the coup prompted many leading Austrian Nazis to go into exile in Germany, where they continued their efforts for unification of the two countries. In early 1938, under increasing pressure from pro-unification activists, Austrian chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg announced that there would be a referendum on a possible union with Germany to be held on 13 March. Portraying this as defying the popular will in Austria and Germany, Hitler threatened an invasion and secretly pressured Schuschnigg to resign. The referendum was canceled. On 12 March, the German Wehrmacht crossed the border into Austria, unopposed by the Austrian military; the Germans were greeted with great enthusiasm. A plebiscite held on 10 April officially ratified Austria's annexation by the Reich.
Denazification (German: Entnazifizierung) was an Allied initiative to rid German and Austrian society, culture, press, economy, judiciary, and politics of the Nazi ideology following the Second World War. It was carried out by removing those who had been Nazi Party or SS members from positions of power and influence and by disbanding or rendering impotent the organizations associated with Nazism. The program of denazification was launched after the end of the war and was solidified by the Potsdam Agreement in August 1945. The term denazification was first coined as a legal term in 1943 in the Pentagon, intended to be applied in a narrow sense with reference to the post-war German legal system. However, it later took on a broader meaning. In late 1945 and early 1946, the emergence of the Cold War and the economic importance of Germany caused the United States in particular to lose interest in the program, somewhat mirroring the Reverse Course in American-occupied Japan. The British handed over denazification panels to the Germans in January 1946, while the Americans did likewise in March 1946. The French ran the mildest denazification effort. Denazification was carried out in an increasingly lenient and lukewarm way until being officially abolished in 1951. Additionally, the program was hugely unpopular in West Germany, where many Nazis maintained positions of power, and was opposed by the new West German government of Konrad Adenauer. On the other hand, denazification in East Germany was considered a critical element of the transformation into a socialist society and was far stricter in opposing Nazism than its counterpart. However, not all former Nazis faced harsh judgment; doing special tasks for the government could protect a few from prosecution.