In the Treaty of St.Germain, signed 10 September 1919, imposed upon Austria by the western liberal plutocratic Allies (but not ratified by the United States), union with Germany was expressly forbidden without the consent of the council of the League of Nations.
However, from that time every Austrian Chancellor bar the last two had called for union with Germany: Chancellor Karl Renner, from 1919 onwards, had proposed a union of Austria with Germany, using the word Anschluss. Like other Austrian socialists, Renner believed that the best future course was to seek union with Germany.
In telegrams from the British Embassies in Rome and Berlin on 16 March 1933 it was observed that while "Austrian National Socialists" were carrying out "strong agitation" for Anschluss with Germany the German Government "would not encourage the idea at present".
The British historian E.H.Carr, writing in 1937, stated: "Never, from 1919 to 1933, had there been any doubt that the vast majority of the Austrian people desired union with Germany......since Herr Hitler's accession to power, a free vote in Austria would still have given a majority for union with Germany. But the majority would have been by no means as overwhelming and incontestable as prior to January 1933."
During World War II the Allied invasion forces occupied Austria and later made it a separate country. The Austrian State Treaty was signed on 15 May 1955. Upon the termination of allied occupation, Austria was proclaimed a neutral country, and everlasting neutrality was incorporated into the Constitution on 26 October 1955.
Hitler addresses a million cheering people in Vienna after the Anschluss.
- Dolfuss by Gordon Brook-Shepherd, Macmillan, London, 1961.
- Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Führer by Dieter Wagner and Gerhard Tomkowitz, München 1968, English translation, Longman, London, 1971, ISBN 0-582-10803-9
- Ernst Panzenböck, Ein Deutscher Traum: die Anschlussidee und Anschlusspolitik bei Karl Renner und Otto Bauer. Materialien zur Arbeiterbewegung, PhD thesis, Vienna: Europaverlag, 1985 p.93.
- Woodward, M.A., F.B.A., Prof. E.L., and Butler, M.A., Rohan, Documents on british Foreign Policy 1919-1939 second series, vol.v, 1933, HMSOm London, 1956, p.60.
- Carr, Professor Edward Hallett, International Relations since the Peace Treaties MacMillan, London, 1937, revised 1940, 1941 and 1945, p.204-5.