12.3.08

Anschluss

"...making the world safe for Democracy." Woodrow Wilson
In 1933 Adolph Hitler, or as Neville Chamberlain called him, Herr Hitler, was elected by more or less democratic means, and assumed complete power in after the aging president Von Hindenburg died. Once again, 70 years ago today, by less than a democratic means the German Reich made Catholic Austria part of the Greater Germany. The Nazis held a plebiscite within the following month, where they received 99.73% of the vote.

On the morning of 12 March, the 8th Army of the German Wehrmacht crossed the German-Austrian border. They did not face resistance by the Austrian Army—on the contrary, the German troops were greeted by cheering Austrians with Hitler salutes, Nazi flags and flowers. By this the NS invasion into Austria without one single shooting is also called "Blumenkrieg" (war of flowers). For the Wehrmacht this invasion was the first big test of its machinery. Although the invading forces were badly organized and coordination between the units was poor, it mattered little because no fighting took place. It did, however, serve as a warning to German commanders in future military operations, such as that against Czechoslovakia. More


The ballot text reads "Do you agree with the reunification of Austria with the German Reich that was enacted on 13 March 1938, and do you vote for the party of our leader Adolf Hitler?;" the large circle is labeled "Yes," the smaller "No."

de Brantigny

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