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Oasis
11-09-16, 02:46
Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. All these 4 countries speak German as their first and official language. they are bordering each other. They once used to be one country, yet they are divided. Always thought about that..

Twilight
11-09-16, 10:29
Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. All these 4 countries speak German as their first and official language. they are bordering each other. They once used to be one country, yet they are divided. Always thought about that..

All of those countries were part of the Holy Roman Empire divided by small Kingdoms. As seen on these maps
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holy_Roman_Empire#/media/File%3AMitteleuropa_zur_Zeit_der_Staufer.svg

Taranis
11-09-16, 11:51
Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. All these 4 countries speak German as their first and official language. they are bordering each other. They once used to be one country, yet they are divided. Always thought about that..

History happened?

First, Switzerland has not one official language but four (in addition to German, it has French, Italian and Romansh).

For Austria, the story is decisively more complicated. Austria used to be part of the Holy Roman Empire (until the Napoleonic Wars, when the HRE was dissolved), and at that point already it was a major power in its own right. When Napoleon dissolved the HRE, Austria declared itself as its own 'empire'. More importantly, Austria (or Austria-Hungary after the compromise) was a multi-ethnic empire, and while speakers of German had the plurality (read: they were the largest single language group), by a large margin they had no majority. To the aspiring thinkers in Germany who wanted to unify the German states after the Napoleonic Wars in the early 19th century (culminating in the failed 1848 revolution), this was a bizarre problem, and they came up with two concepts to solve this: either a 'little' Germany (German Kleindeutschland) that excluded Austria, or a 'greater' Germany (German GroƟdeutschland). The actual unification of Germany under Prussian yoke in the early 1870s was a case of the former. Then World War One happened, and in the end Austria-Hungary was dissolved. The German-speaking rump state (which became modern-day Austria) was forbidden by the winners of World War One (the Entente Powers) from joining Germany. Then in 1930s the Nazis rose to power in Germany, and in the late 1930s, thanks to the dilettantish negotiations of the British (under Neville Chamberlain), Hitler was able to annex Austria and he proclaimed a "Greater German Empire" as a result. Then, after also annexing the German-speaking parts of Bohemia (the so-called "Sudetenland"), Hitler started World War II by invading Poland. After World War II, Austria was restored as a separate state, and it has been separate since. When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989 and negotiations of a reunification between east and west Germany began, there wasn't even a debate about Austria joining Germany. Realistically, if you disregard the period from just before to the end of World War II (1938-1945), Austria has been a separate state that developed separately from the rest of Germany for over 200 years.

And now, cynically, let me ask you a question: why does the United States not rejoin the United Kingdom? :laughing:

bicicleur
11-09-16, 12:27
Austria was ruled by the Habsburgers. I don't know how they got in power there.
Flanders was at some point inherited by another branch of Habsburgers.

Tomenable
11-09-16, 12:41
Then, after also annexing the German-speaking parts of Bohemia (the so-called "Sudetenland"), Hitler started World War II by invading Poland.

Between annexing Sudetenland (October 1938) and invading Poland (1 September 1939) he also occupied the rest of Czechoslovakia (15 March 1939) creating the Protectorate of Bohemia-Moravia and the Puppet-State of Axis Slovakia, annexed Klaipeda from Lithuania (23 March 1939) and started to demand the revision of borders with Poland and the annexation of Free City Danzig (April 1939). All of those were blatant violations of the Munich Agreement from 1938 in which Hitler had promised that after getting Sudetenland he was not going to advance any further territorial demands. Not to mention the Stalin-Hitler Pact (23 August 1939) in which Eastern Europe was de facto partitioned between Germany and the Soviet Union, just like Spain and Portugal had once partitioned America at Tordesillas in 1494.

Taranis
11-09-16, 13:35
Between annexing Sudetenland (October 1938) and invading Poland (1 September 1939) he also occupied the rest of Czechoslovakia (15 March 1939) creating the Protectorate of Bohemia-Moravia and the Puppet-State of Axis Slovakia, annexed Klaipeda from Lithuania (23 March 1939) and started to demand the revision of borders with Poland and the annexation of Free City Danzig (April 1939). All of those were blatant violations of the Munich Agreement from 1938 in which Hitler had promised that after getting Sudetenland he was not going to advance any further territorial demands.

My apologies for abridging that earlier, but I cut it short because I felt it would have gone too far off topic when we're talking about the Austrian narrative. I'll agree with you however that all of those instances could have been reason enough for Britain and France to declare war on Germany - and its Neville Chamberlain's fault in particular that that didn't happen. Instead, they just gave more fodder to the monster Hitler. But as I said, its not all that relevant to this discussion about Austria. My point was that the Anschluss was - at large - an anomaly in the history of Austria.


Not to mention the Stalin-Hitler Pact (23 August 1939) in which Eastern Europe was de facto partitioned between Germany and the Soviet Union, just like Spain and Portugal had once partitioned America at Tordesillas in 1494.

I do not think that those treaties are comparable in any way. The Americas were at that point a barely explored lands of uncertain extend (so the portugese and spaniards had no real clue about how many peoples would be affected), which is something you cannot say about 1930s-era Poland.

Oasis
11-09-16, 16:37
History happened?

First, Switzerland has not one official language but four (in addition to German, it has French, Italian and Romansh).

German is the first language for the greater majority of the Swiss people. Besides, they speak german in the national parliament, don't they? I don't think having regional languages other than german would prevent them from joining Germany. In Canada there are 2 official languages and many other recognized languages.

Taranis
11-09-16, 17:33
German is the first language for the greater majority of the Swiss people. Besides, they speak german in the national parliament, don't they? I don't think having regional languages other than german would prevent them from joining Germany. In Canada there are 2 official languages and many other recognized languages.

The language situation is far more complicated than that. You could say that the Swiss Germans are effectively bilingual: their everyday language is Swiss German (which is not per se mutually intelligible with Standard German, though Swiss German is to some degree mutually intelligible with the south German dialects). In contrast, the official language in the media is Standard German (although with a Swiss accent, which Germans love to confuse as Swiss German, but it is not the same). Theoretically, Switzerland could go ahead and separate is ties with Germany for good and make Swiss German the sole language of German-speaking Switzerland. However, they don't do that because of Swiss- and French-speaking parts of Switzerland, because (as I've been told first hand by a Swiss French, so take that with a grain of salt :wary2: ) these wouldn't put up with learning Swiss German. The way things are, they can go ahead and learn Standard German as a second or third language, and they can also use it in Austria and Germany, which they deem as much more useful. Hence you have the strange situation of bilingualism.

Second, far more importantly, Switzerland is by European standards a relatively old country - and so is Swiss identity. The original Swiss Confederacy formed in the late 1200s, and Switzerland's independence from the Holy Roman Empire was fixed by the end of the Thirty Years War - around 150 years before the begin of the Napoleonic Wars.

Tomenable
11-09-16, 17:49
We could argue that Dutch is a variety of German (Deutsch) as well. AFAIK similar dialects are spoken on both sides of the border. There is a "West Germanic dialect continuum" and the transition from German to Dutch is fluent and gradual. The reason why we distinguish Dutch from German is because the Netherlands have had a long history of independent statehood, and they created their own literary language (Standard Dutch).

Some people say: "a language is a dialect with an army". I would add: "and also with a book". Written culture is important.

When it comes to Austrians - they use similar variety of German as Bavarians, and are culturally close to Bavarians.

LeBrok
11-09-16, 18:47
Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. All these 4 countries speak German as their first and official language. they are bordering each other. They once used to be one country, yet they are divided. Always thought about that..Why are you so keen on German speakers unification, but don't mention other language unifications like Great Union of Spanish speakers in South and Central America for example?

Sile
11-09-16, 20:51
Austria was ruled by the Habsburgers. I don't know how they got in power there.
Flanders was at some point inherited by another branch of Habsburgers.

Austrians are just old bavarians speaking an old bavarian dialect

the original German was low-german from North-Germany..................but it seems to have been replaced by High-German ( alpine or south german ) as the main tongue

Franconian, and coastal Rhenish ( which can be associated with frisian ) might have a say in this

Oasis
11-09-16, 21:57
German is the official language of Germany, Austria, and Liechtenstein. In addition, it is one of four official languages in Switzerland, and one of three commonly used in Luxembourg. There are over 120 million native speakers of German, primarily in Europe, though it is spoken regionally by native speaker minorities in 40 countries. As an international language of business, scientific research, publishing and tourism, it's estimated that German is spoken as a foreign language by an additional 80 million people worldwide. (source: vistawide.com/german/german.htm)

8004

Oasis
11-09-16, 22:07
Why are you so keen on German speakers unification, but don't mention other language unifications like Great Union of Spanish speakers in South and Central America for example?
As a matter of fact, I thought about that, too. We could certainly discuss that in another thread..

Fein
19-08-18, 10:13
I am from Austria and I have never met a fellow citizen in my life who would have a desire to join Merkels Germany, no matter from which political direction she or he comes. :laughing:

exceededminimumso..
19-08-18, 22:07
I think people should unite based on haplogroups. MN1GA

Tomenable
19-08-18, 23:27
You should rather ask a different question: why is Protestant German-speaking area and Catholic German-speaking area united, if the same didn't work out among Catholic Serbo-Croatian speakers and Orthodox Serbo-Croatian speakers in Yugoslavia?

Natural affinity of Catholic Bavaria is with Catholic Austria rather than with the rest of Germany.

Percent of Catholics by county in Weimar Germany (Figure 1):

https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Religion-%2C-Economics-%2C-and-the-Electoral-Success-of-Spenkuch-Tillmann/2a479a2b3e08c933cefc8b30eb3e541e87517794

https://i.imgur.com/WIW92J5.png

Sigebryht
29-05-20, 05:14
Because most of those unions were for practical and power reasons and not because of logic and historical neatness. Religion lost majority of it's power by late 19th century already. I mean Nietzche was writing about total loss of power of church by that time. The reason why Yugoslavia fell apart was because Kosovo and Serb deep state wanted ethnic supremacy while Croat and Slovenian concensus was a loose federation. The second difference was that Slovenia and Croatia wanted to introduce capitalism asap while the rest was content with socialism. It was also clear that Slovenian and Croat companies would have a clear advantage if capitalism was introduced. Kinda like west Germany advantage meant east Germany is still a backwater and almost all of their old big state run companies crashed. There was a legitimate fear of something like that happening in the east of Yugoslavia.

Since I can't post links yet look at "JNA jedinstvo" 1985 and 1987
original decentralized state level army command before and after

deep state changes plans, centralizes army in Belgrade (Serbia) with 1 army district roughly coresponding to "Greater Serbia" and "Pec Patriarchy" maps.

After a while Serbian Academy of Science and Arts wrote a greviance paper claiming Serbs were being G word and mentioned war as one of possible solutions to this problem. Of course if one of smaller republics published such a paper, like Bosniaks for example who were forbiden to call themselves Bosniak but were forcefully labeled Muslim... they would all be arrested yet nobody was arrested in Serbia, nobody was even fired, it was met with head nodding over there. A few years later, organizations that served as a territorial defense (something like national guard in USA) were disarmed which basically meant that the monopoly on force was in Belgrade which was increasingly saying just how terrible it was for Serbs and how something must be done. This created a wave of panic and loss of trust where neighbors stopped believing neighbors and spontaneous violence erupted on sports events, by drunk youths in night clubs, in school yards etc. Increasingly, groups of late teen and young adult local "though guys" would organize in increasingly big groups and confront each other and skirmish in streets. On random parties or weddnigs tough guy groups of hostile ethnic group would come and throw rocks or even weapons. This escalated until war happened.

There was simply nothing, as far as I know like that in many nations that are kinda odd unisions like Deutschland. This is also why Catalonia, Padania and Scotland have not seceeded. The level of distrust is not high enough and the question of who owns property is not in question. Once those 2 are up for grabs there is no alternative to a war. This is why South Africa right now is extremely troubling. The trust and how people see property is disputed with one group prefering western style hard private and the other wants publicly owned property.

I would say that above all Deutsche W A N T E D to be united... that want, that will for unity was so strong that East Germans did not even bother thinking about the economy, south Germans did not bother thinking about their Catholicism (Protestant Germany was pushing for eugenics really hard and Catholic Germans sacrificed their moral ideals rather then national ones) and catholic morals. For whatever reason, there was never any great disturbance or a deep state of let's say Bavaria or Switzerland that pushed in the other direction in any strong way and if it did, those efforts were of a single generation and not a sustained "at all cost" kind of thing.