A far-right political party founded by a former SS officer became part of Austria’s governing coalition on Monday. Sebastian Kurz was sworn in as Austria’s new chancellor after forming a coalition with the far-right Freedom Party of Austria (fpö), headed up by Heinz-Christian Strache. The fpö has roots that go back to 1956, when it was established by Anton Reinthaller, an SS officer in Nazi Germany.
Considering the fpö’s alarming history, why hasn’t there been an outcry over Austria’s new right-wing government? Moreover, is this the start of a right-wing political resurgence across Europe?
In an article titled “Austrian Far-right Freedom Party on Brink of Power Ditches ‘Nazi’ Cornflower,” the Telegraph provided some important background information about fpö leader Strache. Notice what it wrote on November 10:
Mr. Strache was arrested in Germany in 1989 for taking part in a Hitler Youth-style torchlit neo-Nazi rally. He has also been photographed posing with guns alongside known neo-Nazis. …
Incidents documented by the committee include a Freedom Party politician who called for the concentration camp to be put back in operation; another who posted a picture of SS troops on Facebook with the caption “Our grandfathers were not criminals” ….
This is the man who has just been given control over the Foreign, Interior and Defense Ministries—that means his party now runs Austria’s army, police and intelligence services!