In Hitler’s Austria, Evan Burr Bukey refutes the long-held theory that Austrians were victims of Nazism. He points out that, even prior to the Anschluss, the majority of the Austrian populace supported Hitler’s economic and social policies, in addition to his policies regarding Jews. And he goes on to show that Austrians may have expressed less resistance to the Nazi government, and more hostility toward Jews, than their German neighbors.
Against this backdrop, Bukey examines the political and popular opinions of ordinary Austrians under the Third Reich. He focuses on diverse social and political groups, including the Austrian Nazi Party, the industrial working class, the Catholic Church, and the farming community, documenting how Austrian citizens reacted to the Anschluss, Nazi rule, and the Jewish community.
Bukey based this book largely on highly confidential Nazi Secret Service reports compiled by the Sicherheitsdienst (SD) of the SS. This group developed a stringent observational system that allowed Hitler to gauge the general attitude of the Austrian population and to detect grievances. He also used reports compiled by the Landräte, or county executives, the American Office of Strategic Services, and the observations of foreign correspondents and British and American diplomats. This variety of sources allows for a comparison of regional attitudes and opinions while confirming Austria’s virulent participation in the destruction of European Jews.
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|TABLE OF CONTENTS|
|Abbreviations and Glossary||xv|
|PART I. THE ROAD TO GREATER GERMANY|
|1. Before the Ostmark,||3|
|2. The Austrians and the Anschluss,||25|
|PART II. FROM ANSCHLUSS TO WAR|
|3. The Nazi Populace: Between Acclamation and Disappointment,||43|
|4. The Working Class: Acceptance and Apathy,||71|
|5. Austrian Catholicism: Antipathy and Accomodation,||93|
|6. The Farming Populace: Anger and Anguish,||112|
|7. The Popular Assault on the Jews,||131|
|PART III. THE AUSTRIAN PEOPLE AND HITLER’S WAR|
|8. A Distant Conflict, 1939-1943,||155|
|9. Between Stalingrad and the Moscow Declaration,||186|
|10. Conquest and Collapse, 1944-1945,||210|