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The First Years of the Republic of Austria

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Stefan Wedrac

on 20 March 2018

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Transcript of The First Years of the Republic of Austria

"Republic of Austria" - the first years
1918
Nov 11: Emperor Karl waives his rights to participate in politics
Nov 12: Proclamation of the Republic of Austria
first communist agitations
rally in front of the parliament
provisional national assembly decides to announce elections
famine
international help
Sweden
Switzerland
foreign occupation of
Tyrol
Sudetenland
Carinthia
1919
Centers of Power end 1918/early 1919
imperial administration
imperial government
national council
provisional national assembly
vigilant groups/militia
worker's and soldier's
councils
political parties
allied intervention forces
participate
orders
competition
People's Army
"Volkswehr"
influence
Feb 16: First Elections
Results:
Cristian Social Party 35,9%
Social Democrats 40,8%
Nationalists 20,8%
Carinthian-Yugoslav Battle
fightings Dec 1918/ Jan 1919,
May/June 1919
Losses on Austrian side:
200 dead, 800 wounded
free
equal
secret ballot
proportional representation
full voting rights for women
Czecks prevent participation of Germans in Bohemia
Peace Treaty of St. Germain-en-Laye
May/June 1919: Austrian delegation in Paris
not allowed to move freely
only given the terms
Austria as the legal successor of the monarchy
professional army
(30.000 men)
Union with
Germany prohibited
"general lien" & reparations
"League of Nations"
concluded on Sept. 10, 1919
Outcome:
Coalition CS/SD
National Assembly
1920-22
1922-1932
Political Parties 1918-1934
Christian Socials
Social Democrats
various German
National Parties
Key Issues
Union with Germany
Yes
(econ. necessity)
Form of Government
Ideology
Economy
Yes
(socialist revolution)
Yes
(nationalism)
Republic not necessary
Democracy and Republic as the road to Socialism
National Democracy and German Republic
Political Catholicism
business ethics, corporations
Austro-
Marxism
German Nationalism
nationalization
mostly totally liberal
Antisemitism
The Communist Menace
Bavaria
Hungary
April/May:
Soviet Republic
Austria
March-August:
Soviet Republic
Communist Army Battallion 41
War against neighboring countries
Bela Kun
destroyed by conservative reaction
participation
Communist Party founded Nov 3, 1918
attempts to control w&s councils
April 17: veterans and communists set parliament on fire
June 14/15 CP members arrested, revolt suppressed
Coalition: CS/SD
"freedom of currency" declared 1920
People's Army: council system or no political involvment?
inflation
coalition breaks
first regular government (CS+Nat.P.)
drafting and passing of a constitution
Treaty of Lana with CSR
Austria as a "Federal State"
two-chamber system
president
democratic republic
fundamental rights (1867)
1920
loan of 500 mio
confirmation of the borders
mutual friendship
Otto Bauer & Ignaz Seipel
1876-1932
"prelate without mercy"
1881-1938
socialist theoretician and leader
"Era Seipel"
Seipel: MP 1920-32, 1922-24&1926-29 Federal Chancellor
Economic Situation
Austria:
12% of the population of Austria-Hungary
38% of Austria-Hungary's industry
cars
railway engines
iron&steel
paper
running at 20-60% of their capacity
50% of the food needed produced in Austria
virtually no energy, some foreign participations
"Red Vienna"
1921: Vienna becomes a separate "federal country" (Bundesland)
1919-1934
Social Democrats win elections 1919
answers of a socialist utopia
problems:
health
housing
creation of a new man
public health care, offices, advice
luxury tax, "residential building tax"
building program, communal housing
joint recreational activities, public libraries, education and fitness
*
*
antisemitic campaign posters
problem: Inflation
1922: loan of the League of Nations ("Geneva Protocol")
destroyed in May by right-wing militia
650 mio
foreign supervision of finances
lien on tobacco monopoly
inflation stopped, new currency (1924 "Schilling"), subsequent hard currency policy
union with Germany prohibited
Growing Tensions
Heimwehr
Schutzbund
the parties and their paramilitary groups
socialist
worker-dominated
democratic-republican
city-based
conservative/national
farmers and lower middle class
dominating in rural areas
marches, demonstrations
clash & shooting at Schattendorf, Jan 30 1927
2 dead, murderers six months later found "not guilty" by a jury in Vienna
members of a veteran's guard fire at the Schutzbund
"Government without Mercy"
taxes raised
infrastructure
sales tax introduced
84 000 civil servants dismissed
National Bank founded
government: CS plus Nationalists/Farmers
1918-1934: 217 dead, 642 wounded
strength: about 60 000
strength: about 40 000
July 15, 1927: riot on the Ringstrasse, Palace of Justice set on fire, firefighters blocked, police shoots 89 people
Social Democrats declare strike that is not followed
small business owners, lower middle class, catholics
farmers, protestants, higher middle class, white-collar workers
workers, intellectuals
1921
government breaks
1920
1922
(Socialists decide not to side with communists)
ARTICLE 10.

The Members of the League undertake to respect and preserve as against external aggression the territorial integrity and existing political independence of all Members of the League. In case of any such aggression or in case of any threat or danger of such aggression the Council shall advise upon the means by which this obligation shall be fulfilled.

ARTICLE 11.

Any war or threat of war, whether immediately affecting any of the Members of the League or not, is hereby declared a matter of concern to the whole League, and the League shall take any action that may be deemed wise and effectual to safeguard the peace of nations. In case any such emergency should arise the Secretary General shall on the request of any Member of the League forthwith summon a meeting of the Council.

It is also declared to be the friendly right of each Member of the League to bring to the attention of the Assembly or of the Council any circumstance whatever affecting international relations which threatens to disturb international peace or the good understanding between nations upon which peace depends.
"collective security"
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