“A red-white-red signal of hope and positive change; a red-white-red signal today goes from Austria to all the capitals of the European Union.”

By the tiny margin of 30,853 votes, the Green candidate, Alexander Van der Bellen, won the race for Presidency of the Republic of Austria. But now, the right-wing FPÖ (Freedom Party of Austria) candidate, Norbert Hofer, has claimed serious sloppiness in the election process and has asked the constitutional court to revise the electoral process. In order to fix the crisis in Social-Democracy and the government, government and Party leadership changed their personnel. A new political crisis is being prepared.

The first round of elections for President of the Republic shocked both the political caste and larger layers of society. The two candidates for parties of the current government (a social democrat-conservative “grand” coalition) together won just 23%, a huge fall when we consider that previously the combined vote for these parties had always been 80-90%. Politics in Austria is now entering a critical stage.

The discovery of a chicken meat truck containing the bodies of 71 suffocated Syrian refugees on August 27 has shocked the entire country. The lorry, found at the side of the motorway connecting Vienna with Budapest represents the biggest mass killing in Austria since the atrocities of the Nazis during the Second World War. These deaths are directly caused by the border regime of the European Union.

In Austria parties are usually referred to by their colours. The so-called “red-blue coalition” in the Austrian state of Burgenland a coalition of the social democratic SPÖ with the racist, populist, neoliberal FPÖ  has sent shock waves through the political landscape of the country. How could this happen and what can we do about it?

The political conditions in Austria have begun to move. We are witnessing a move towards the right. This is a natural development based on the leadership of the workers movement not resisting the decline of living standards for our class. On the contrary, they are participating in the management of the collapse. But resistance is forming.

Join us!

Help build the forces of Marxism worldwide!

Join the IMT!

MARXIST.COM SUMMER BREAK

In Defence of Marxism, is taking a break from regular publication. We will resume daily updates again in September 2017.

upcoming events