Conclusion: Austria and European Integration against the background of German Unification

문서에서 Austria, German Unification, and European Integration: A Brief Historical Background (페이지 21-26)

Within the context of the domestic developments in the GDR and the changing international climate, Vranitzky gradually modified his attitude and finally warmly welcomed German unification, since it was obvious that Austria would need the support of united Germany to become a member of the EC.31 How those processes interacted after 1990 will be subject to

26 Conversation Oskar Fischer–E. A. Shevardnadze, Moscow, 20 January 1990 (= Document 33), in Ines Lehmann, Die Außenpolitik der DDR 1989/90, (Baden-Baden: Nomos, 2010), p. 441–443.

27 See Document #12.

28 Gehler, Three Germanies, p. 217–219.

29 See Document #13, Document #14, Document #18, and Document #19.

30 Maximilian Graf, “Parteifinanzierung oder Devisenerwirtschaftung? Zu den Wirtschaftsbeziehungen von KPÖ und SED, 1946–1989,” in Jahrbuch für historische Kommunismusforschung (2014), 229–247; MMaximilian Graf,

“Parteifinanzierung oder Devisenerwirtschaftung? Zu den Wirtschaftsbeziehungen von KPÖ und SED, 1946–1989,”

in Jahrbuch für historische Kommuni

smusforschung (2014), 229–247; Anpassung an veränderte Verhältnisse,” p. 525.

further archival research. As our project revealed, the interconnections were manifest right after the fall of the wall.

When the Great Coalition of Conservatives and Socialists returned to power in 1987, Austrian policy shifted again in the direction of greater emphasis on European integration. Austria now sought full membership in the EC. This was as a result of changes in the EC’s Single European Act (SEA), its Internal Market program, and the receding Cold War, as well as domestic pressures arising from an escalating crisis in the nationalized industries. What really drove Austria’s policy of support for integration in 1989 and the following years was, as before in the 1950s and 1960s, the threat of exclusion. The policy change was not, however, ad hoc, but took place in a period of transition. What followed was a further attempt to “go-it-alone” with the application for accession to the EC on 17 July 1989. The Austrian application was largely met with noncommittal sympathy, but no concrete roadmap existed yet.32 After having promoted the idea of “Mitteleuropa” (Central Europe) for years, against the background of the revolutions of 1989 and with regard to European integration, Vienna wished not to be seen as part of East-Central Europe, but—in spite of being neutral—as an integral part of the West. 33

When a close relationship between the GDR and the EC was discussed after the fall of the Wall, Austrian diplomats followed these developments with suspicion. The events and processes that led to German unification soon overtook any considerations in this direction. By April 1990 in the course of high-level diplomatic negotiations Bonn showed its confidence in Austria’s position toward German Unification, assured the Austrians of German support for the country’s EC ambitions, but in the same breath suggested that at the moment a pushy attitude would be inappropriate.34 Unified Germany almost unconditionally supported Austria’s sometimes stony negotiations for EC-membership in 1993-1994. One of the staunchest opponents was France. It is reported that Mitterrand accepted in the end what, in his view, was yet another German country

32 Michael Gehler, Österreichs Weg in die Europäische Union (Innsbruck: StudienVerlag, 2009), 102–106.

33 On Austria’s Mitteleuropa politics, see Vladislav Marjanović, Die Mitteleuropa-Idee und die Mitteleuropapolitik Österreichs 1945–1995 (Francfort: Peter Lang, 1998). On the current state of research, see Michael Gehler/Paul Luif/Elisabeth Vyslonzil (eds.), Die Dimension Mitteleuropa in der Europäischen Union. Geschichte und Gegenwart (Hildesheim: Gregor Olms Verlag, 2015).

34 See Document #15.

joining the European Union.35 When Vranitzky visited France, Great Britain and Ireland in May 1990 as part of a promotion tour for the Austrian EC-application, he met first with Mitterrand and the next day with Margaret Thatcher. While French-West German disagreements over German unification had been already overcome and the conversation between Vranitzky and Mitterrand focused solely on European integration, Thatcher touched the German question. 36 The Prime Minister and the Austrian Chancellor agreed that the West German leadership, especially with regard to economics, underestimated the tasks at issue in a unified Germany. Both had kept a certain (in this regard, justified) skepticism.37

After 1989-1990, with the end of the East-West conflict and after Mikhail Gorbachev had given up Soviet opposition to Austria’s ambitions for EC membership, the opportunity to attain full membership presented itself. From 1991-1994, the Austrian government began to support

integration to a far greater degree, playing down the importance of neutrality. An intensified supranational integration policy followed with entry into the EU, with a conscious effective discarding of neutrality after 1995. Participation in the European Economic Area (EEA) during 1992-1994 served as a springboard for raising the quality of integration. From 1989-1995, the way to Brussels was through Paris and Rome, however. After the spectre of the “Anschluss” turned out to no longer be an insurmountable obstacle and the formal declaration by Italy and Austria of the end of the dispute in South Tyrol, the EC door was pushed open and entry became a real

possibility. Germany, a traditional promoter of Austrian interests regarding integration, added weight to the application with the support of Chancellor Helmut Kohl—this time successfully, in contrast to the 1950s and 1960s. The Austrian aims were not met with enthusiasm in Brussels,

35 Michael Gehler, Vom Marshall-Plan zur EU. Österreich und die europäische Integration von 1945 bis zur Gegenwart (Innsbruck: StudienVerlag, 2006), p. 195. On Vranitzky see idem “Paving Austria’s Way to Brussels: Chancellor Franz Vranitzky (1986–1997) – A Banker, Social Democrat, and Pragmatic European Leader,” in Journal of European Integration History 18 (2012) 2, p. 159–182.

36 See Document #16. On the still disputed French attitude towards German Unification, see Maurice Vaïsse and Christian Wenkel (eds.), La diplomatie française face à l’unification allemande (Paris: Éditions Tallandier, 2011);

Ulrich Lappenküper, Mitterand und Deutschland. Die enträtselte Sphinx (Munich: Oldebourg, 2011); Frédéric Bozo, Mitterrand, la diplomatie française et la fin de la guerre froide (Paris: Jacob, 2005); Tilo Schabert, Wie Weltgeschichte gemacht wird. Frankreich und die deutsche Einheit, (Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta, 2002).

37 See Document #17. On Thatcher’s position toward German Unification, see Klaus-Rainer Jackisch, Eisern gegen die Einheit. Margaret Thatcher und die deutsche Wiedervereinigung (Francfort: Societätsverlag, 2004); Documents on British Policy Overseas (DBPO), Series III, Vol. VII: German Unification, 1989–1990, ed. by Keith Hamilton, Patrick Salmon and Stephen Twigge, (London: Routledge, 2010).

however. The EU member states set on deepening integration, as well as Commission President Jacques Delors, had one problem more with Austria, a “special case” and neutral, as they were preparing the massive changes to the Maastricht Treaty including economic and monetary union reforms. In the end, partially due to changes within the EC itself, it took several more years to negotiate the agreement with the EC. After an overwhelmingly positive plebiscite in 1994, Austria finally joined the European Union in 1995.38

38 For details, see Gehler, Österreichs Weg in die Europäische Union, p. 130–142.

Michael Gehler is Professor at the University of Hildesheim, Institute for History, and Corresponding Member, History Commission of the Austrian Academy of Science for Abroad. Previously he has served as Director of the Institute of Modern and Contemporary Historical Research of the Austrian Academy of Science (ÖAW), Vienna, and Elected Director of the Historical Commission of the Austrian Academy of Science (ÖAW), Vienna. He is interested in the history of Empires; Austrian, German and European Modern History; International Relations with special reference to Cold War;

German Unification; European Integration; Transnational Party Cooperation of Christian Democrats and Conservatives in Europe; and South Tyrol Question

Maximilian Graf is currently research associate at the European University Institute in Florence (2017–2019). Previously he held several positions at the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the University of Vienna. In November–December 2013, he was chercheur associée at the Centre Marc Bloch in Berlin. From April–June 2017, he was a Visiting Scholar at the Stanford University. He has been awarded the Karl von Vogelsang Prize – Austrian State Prize for the History of Social Sciences (2014), the Dr.-Alois-Mock-Wissenschaftspreis (2015), and the best publication award of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (2017). Graf’s most recent publications include his first book on Austrian–East German relations during the Cold War Österreich und die DDR 1949–1990. Politik und Wirtschaft im Schatten der deutschen Teilung (Vienna: ÖAW, 2016); the co-edited volumes Franz Marek. Beruf und Berufung Kommunist. Lebenserinnerungen und Schlüsseltexte (Vienna:

Mandelbaum, 2017); Österreich im Kalten Krieg. Neue Forschungen im internationalen Kontext (Göttingen: V&R unipress, 2016); Orient & Okzident. Begegnungen und Wahrnehmungen aus fünf Jahrhunderten (Vienna: Neue Welt Verlag 2016, 2017); Europa und die deutsche Einheit.

Beobachtungen, Entscheidungen und Folgen (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck &Ruprecht, 2017); and numerous journal articles and book chapters on Austria in the Cold War and the history of communism. Currently, Graf is working on a book with the working title Overcoming the Iron Curtain. A New History of Détente in Cold War Central Europe. Overcoming the Iron Curtain. A New History of Détente in Cold War Central Europe.

문서에서 Austria, German Unification, and European Integration: A Brief Historical Background (페이지 21-26)