Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe. It borders the Black Sea to the southeast, Bulgaria to the south, Ukraine to the north, Hungary to the west, Serbia to the southwest, Moldova to the east, it has a predominantly temperate-continental climate. With a total area of 238,397 square kilometres, Romania is the 12th largest country and the 7th most populous member state of the European Union, having 20 million inhabitants, its capital and largest city is Bucharest, other major urban areas include Cluj-Napoca, Timișoara, Iași, Constanța, Brașov. The River Danube, Europe's second-longest river, rises in Germany's Black Forest and flows in a general southeast direction for 2,857 km, coursing through ten countries before emptying into Romania's Danube Delta; the Carpathian Mountains, which cross Romania from the north to the southwest, include Moldoveanu Peak, at an altitude of 2,544 m. Modern Romania was formed in 1859 through a personal union of the Danubian Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia.
The new state named Romania since 1866, gained independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1877. Following World War I, when Romania fought on the side of the Allied powers, Bessarabia, Transylvania as well as parts of Banat, Crișana, Maramureș became part of the sovereign Kingdom of Romania. In June–August 1940, as a consequence of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact and Second Vienna Award, Romania was compelled to cede Bessarabia and Northern Bukovina to the Soviet Union, Northern Transylvania to Hungary. In November 1940, Romania signed the Tripartite Pact and in June 1941 entered World War II on the Axis side, fighting against the Soviet Union until August 1944, when it joined the Allies and recovered Northern Transylvania. Following the war, under the occupation of the Red Army's forces, Romania became a socialist republic and member of the Warsaw Pact. After the 1989 Revolution, Romania began a transition back towards a market economy; the sovereign state of Romania is a developing country and ranks 52nd in the Human Development Index.
It has the world's 47th largest economy by nominal GDP and an annual economic growth rate of 7%, the highest in the EU at the time. Following rapid economic growth in the early 2000s, Romania has an economy predominantly based on services, is a producer and net exporter of machines and electric energy, featuring companies like Automobile Dacia and OMV Petrom, it has been a member of the United Nations since 1955, part of NATO since 2004, part of the European Union since 2007. An overwhelming majority of the population identifies themselves as Eastern Orthodox Christians and are native speakers of Romanian, a Romance language. Romania derives from the Latin romanus, meaning "citizen of Rome"; the first known use of the appellation was attested to in the 16th century by Italian humanists travelling in Transylvania and Wallachia. The oldest known surviving document written in Romanian, a 1521 letter known as the "Letter of Neacșu from Câmpulung", is notable for including the first documented occurrence of the country's name: Wallachia is mentioned as Țeara Rumânească.
Two spelling forms: român and rumân were used interchangeably until sociolinguistic developments in the late 17th century led to semantic differentiation of the two forms: rumân came to mean "bondsman", while român retained the original ethnolinguistic meaning. After the abolition of serfdom in 1746, the word rumân fell out of use and the spelling stabilised to the form român. Tudor Vladimirescu, a revolutionary leader of the early 19th century, used the term Rumânia to refer to the principality of Wallachia."The use of the name Romania to refer to the common homeland of all Romanians—its modern-day meaning—was first documented in the early 19th century. The name has been in use since 11 December 1861. In English, the name of the country was spelt Rumania or Roumania. Romania became the predominant spelling around 1975. Romania is the official English-language spelling used by the Romanian government. A handful of other languages have switched to "o" like English, but most languages continue to prefer forms with u, e.g. French Roumanie and Swedish Rumänien, Spanish Rumania, Polish Rumunia, Russian Румыния, Japanese ルーマニア.
1859–1862: United Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia 1862–1866: Romanian United Principalities or Romania 1866–1881: Romania or Principality of Romania 1881–1947: Kingdom of Romania or Romania 1947–1965: Romanian People's Republic or Romania 1965–December, 1989: Socialist Republic of Romania or Romania December, 1989–present: Romania Human remains found in Peștera cu Oase, radiocarbon dated as being from circa 40,000 years ago, represent the oldest known Homo sapiens in Europe. Neolithic techniques and agriculture spread after the arrival of a mixed group of people from Thessaly in the 6th millenium BC. Excavations near a salt spring at Lunca yielded the earliest evidence for salt exploitation in Europe; the first permanent settlements appeared in the Neolithic. Some of them developed into "proto-cities"; the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture—the best known archaeological culture of Old Europe—flourished in Muntenia, southeastern Transylvania and northeastern Moldavia in the 3rd m
Hungary is a country in Central Europe. Spanning 93,030 square kilometres in the Carpathian Basin, it borders Slovakia to the north, Ukraine to the northeast, Austria to the northwest, Romania to the east, Serbia to the south, Croatia to the southwest, Slovenia to the west. With about 10 million inhabitants, Hungary is a medium-sized member state of the European Union; the official language is Hungarian, the most spoken Uralic language in the world, among the few non-Indo-European languages to be spoken in Europe. Hungary's capital and largest city is Budapest; the territory of modern Hungary was for centuries inhabited by a succession of peoples, including Celts, Germanic tribes, West Slavs and the Avars. The foundations of the Hungarian state were established in the late ninth century CE by the Hungarian grand prince Árpád following the conquest of the Carpathian Basin, his great-grandson Stephen I ascended the throne in 1000, converting his realm to a Christian kingdom. By the 12th century, Hungary became a regional power, reaching its cultural and political height in the 15th century.
Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, Hungary was occupied by the Ottoman Empire. It came under Habsburg rule at the turn of the 18th century, joined Austria to form the Austro–Hungarian Empire, a major European power; the Austro-Hungarian Empire collapsed after World War I, the subsequent Treaty of Trianon established Hungary's current borders, resulting in the loss of 71% of its territory, 58% of its population, 32% of ethnic Hungarians. Following the tumultuous interwar period, Hungary joined the Axis Powers in World War II, suffering significant damage and casualties. Hungary became a satellite state of the Soviet Union, which contributed to the establishment of a socialist republic spanning four decades; the country gained widespread international attention as a result of its 1956 revolution and the seminal opening of its previously-restricted border with Austria in 1989, which accelerated the collapse of the Eastern Bloc. On 23 October 1989, Hungary became a democratic parliamentary republic.
Hungary is an OECD high-income economy and has the world's 58th largest economy by PPP. It ranks 45th on the Human Development Index, owing in large part to its social security system, universal health care, tuition-free secondary education. Hungary's rich cultural history includes significant contributions to the arts, literature, sports and technology, it is the 13th most popular tourist destination in Europe, attracting 15.8 million international tourists in 2017, owing to attractions such as the largest thermal water cave system in the world, second largest thermal lake, the largest lake in Central Europe and the largest natural grasslands in Europe. Hungary's cultural and academic prominence classify it as a middle power in global affairs. Hungary joined the European Union in 2004 and has been part of the Schengen Area since 2007, it is a member of numerous international organizations, including the United Nations, NATO, WTO, World Bank, the AIIB, the Council of Europe, the Visegrád Group.
The "H" in the name of Hungary is most due to early founded historical associations with the Huns, who had settled Hungary prior to the Avars. The rest of the word comes from the Latinized form of Byzantine Greek Oungroi. According to an explanation,the Greek name was borrowed from Old Bulgarian ągrinŭ, in turn borrowed from Oghur-Turkic Onogur. Onogur was the collective name for the tribes who joined the Bulgar tribal confederacy that ruled the eastern parts of Hungary after the Avars; the Hungarian endonym is Magyarország, composed of ország. The word magyar is taken from the name of one of the seven major semi-nomadic Hungarian tribes, magyeri; the first element magy is from Proto-Ugric *mäńć-'man, person' found in the name of the Mansi people. The second element eri,'man, lineage', survives in Hungarian férj'husband', is cognate with Mari erge'son', Finnish archaic yrkä'young man'; the Roman Empire conquered the territory west of the Danube between 35 and 9 BC. From 9 BC to the end of the 4th century, Pannonia was part of the Roman Empire, located within part of Hungary's territory.
Around AD 41–54, a 500-strong cavalry unit created the settlement of Aquincum and a Roman legion of 6,000 men was stationed here by AD 89. A civil city grew in the neighbourhood of the military settlement and in AD 106 Aquincum became the focal point of the commercial life of this area and the capital city of the province of Pannonia Inferior; this area now corresponds to the Óbuda district of Budapest, with the Roman ruins now forming part of the modern Aquincum museum. Came the Huns, a Central Asian tribe who built a powerful empire. After Hunnish rule, the Germanic Ostrogoths and Gepids, the Avar Khaganate, had a presence in the Carpathian Basin. In the 9th century, East Francia, the First Bulgarian Empire and Great Moravia ruled the territory of the Carpathian Basin; the freshly unified Hungarians led by Árpád, settled in the Carpathian Basin starting in 895. According to linguistic evidence, they originated from an ancient Uralic-speaking population that inhabited the forested area between the Volga River and the Ural Mountains.
As a federation of united tribes, Hungary was established in 895, some 50 years after the division of the Carolingian Empire at the Treaty of Verdun in 843, before the unification of the Anglo-Saxon king
East Berlin was the de facto capital city of the German Democratic Republic from 1949 to 1990. Formally, it was the Soviet sector of Berlin, established in 1945; the American and French sectors were known as West Berlin. From 13 August 1961 until 9 November 1989, East Berlin was separated from West Berlin by the Berlin Wall; the Western Allied powers did not recognise East Berlin as the GDR's capital, nor the GDR's authority to govern East Berlin. With the London Protocol of 1944 signed on September 12, 1944, the United States, the United Kingdom and the Soviet Union decided to divide Germany into three occupation zones and to establish a special area of Berlin, occupied by the three Allied Forces together. In May 1945, the Soviet Union installed a city government for the whole city, called "Magistrate of Greater Berlin", which existed until 1947. After the war, the Allied Forces administered the city together within the Allied Kommandatura, which served as the governing body of the city. However, in 1948 the Soviet representative left the Kommandatura and the common administration broke apart during the following months.
In the Soviet sector, a separate city government was established, which continued to call itself "Magistrate of Greater Berlin". When the German Democratic Republic was established in 1949, it claimed East Berlin as its capital - a claim, recognised by all Communist countries, its representatives to the People's Chamber were not directly elected and did not have full voting rights until 1981. In June 1948, all railways and roads leading to West Berlin were blocked, East Berliners were not allowed to emigrate. More than 1,000 East Germans were escaping to West Berlin each day by 1960, caused by the strains on the East German economy from war reparations owed to the Soviet Union, massive destruction of industry, lack of assistance from the Marshall Plan. In August 1961, the East German Government tried to stop the population exodus by enclosing West Berlin within the Berlin Wall, it was dangerous for fleeing residents to cross because armed soldiers were trained to shoot illegal migrants. East Germany was a socialist republic.
Privileges such as prestigious apartments and good schooling were given to members of the ruling party and their family. Christian churches were allowed to operate without restraint after years of harassment by authorities. In the 1970s, wages of East Berliners rose and working hours fell; the Western Allies never formally acknowledged the authority of the East German government to govern East Berlin. The United States Command Berlin, for example, published detailed instructions for U. S. military and civilian personnel wishing to visit East Berlin. In fact, the three Western commandants protested against the presence of the East German National People's Army in East Berlin on the occasion of military parades; the three Western Allies established embassies in East Berlin in the 1970s, although they never recognised it as the capital of East Germany. Treaties instead used terms such as "seat of government."On 3 October 1990, East and West Germany and East and West Berlin were reunited, thus formally ending the existence of East Berlin.
Since reunification, the German government has spent vast amounts of money on reintegrating the two halves of the city and bringing services and infrastructure in the former East Berlin up to the standard established in West Berlin. After reunification, the East German economy suffered significantly. Many East German factories were shut down due to inability to comply with West German pollution and safety standards, as well as inability to compete with West German factories; because of this, a massive amount of West German economic aid was poured into East Germany to revitalize it. This stimulus was part-funded through a 7.5% tax on income, which led to a great deal of resentment toward the East Germans. Despite the large sums of economic aid poured into East Berlin, there still remain obvious differences between the former East and West Berlin. East Berlin has a distinct visual style; the unique look of Stalinist architecture, used in East Berlin contrasts markedly with the urban development styles employed in the former West Berlin.
Additionally, the former East Berlin retains a small number of its GDR-era street and place names commemorating German socialist heroes, such as Karl-Marx-Allee, Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz, Karl-Liebknecht-Straße. Many such names, were deemed inappropriate and changed after a long process of review. Another popular symbolic icon of the former East Berlin is the "Ampelmännchen", a stylized version of a fedora-wearing man crossing the street, found on traffic lights at many pedestrian crosswalks throughout the former East; these days they are visible in parts of the former West Berlin. Following a civic debate about whether the Ampelmännchen should be abolished or disseminated more several crosswalks in some parts of the former West Berlin employ the Ampelmännchen. Twenty-five years after the two cities were reunified, the people of East and West Berlin still had noticeable differences between each other, which become more apparent amo
The Czech Republic known by its short-form name, Czechia, is a landlocked country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west, Austria to the south, Slovakia to the east and Poland to the northeast. The Czech Republic covers an area of 78,866 square kilometres with a temperate continental climate and oceanic climate, it is a unitary parliamentary republic, with 10.6 million inhabitants. Other major cities are Brno, Ostrava and Pilsen; the Czech Republic is a member of the European Union, NATO, the OECD, the United Nations, the OSCE, the Council of Europe. It is a developed country with an advanced, high income export-oriented social market economy based in services and innovation; the UNDP ranks the country 14th in inequality-adjusted human development. The Czech Republic is a welfare state with a "continental" European social model, a universal health care system, tuition-free university education and is ranked 14th in the Human Capital Index, it ranks as the 6th safest or most peaceful country and is one of the most non-religious countries in the world, while achieving strong performance in democratic governance.
The Czech Republic includes the historical territories of Bohemia and Czech Silesia. The Czech state was formed in the late 9th century as the Duchy of Bohemia under the Great Moravian Empire. After the fall of the Empire in 907, the centre of power transferred from Moravia to Bohemia under the Přemyslid dynasty. In 1002, the duchy was formally recognized as an Imperial State of the Holy Roman Empire along with the Kingdom of Germany, the Kingdom of Burgundy, the Kingdom of Italy, numerous other territories, becoming the Kingdom of Bohemia in 1198 and reaching its greatest territorial extent in the 14th century. Beside Bohemia itself, the King of Bohemia ruled the lands of the Bohemian Crown, holding a vote in the election of the Holy Roman Emperor. In the Hussite Wars of the 15th century driven by the Protestant Bohemian Reformation, the kingdom faced economic embargoes and defeated five consecutive crusades proclaimed by the leaders of the Catholic Church. Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, the whole Crown of Bohemia was integrated into the Habsburg Monarchy alongside the Archduchy of Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary.
The Protestant Bohemian Revolt against the Catholic Habsburgs led to the Thirty Years' War. After the Battle of the White Mountain, the Habsburgs consolidated their rule, eradicated Protestantism and reimposed Catholicism, adopted a policy of gradual Germanization; this contributed to the anti-Habsburg sentiment. A long history of resentment of the Catholic Church followed and still continues. With the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, the Bohemian Kingdom became part of the German Confederation 1815-1866 as part of Austrian Empire and the Czech language experienced a revival as a consequence of widespread romantic nationalism. In the 19th century, the Czech lands became the industrial powerhouse of the monarchy and were subsequently the core of the Republic of Czechoslovakia, formed in 1918 following the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire after World War I. Czechoslovakia remained the only democracy in this part of Europe in the interwar period. However, the Czech part of Czechoslovakia was occupied by Germany in World War II, while the Slovak region became the Slovak Republic.
Most of the three millions of the German-speaking minority were expelled following the war. The Communist Party of Czechoslovakia won the 1946 elections and after the 1948 coup d'état, Czechoslovakia became a one-party communist state under Soviet influence. In 1968, increasing dissatisfaction with the regime culminated in a reform movement known as the Prague Spring, which ended in a Soviet-led invasion. Czechoslovakia remained occupied until the 1989 Velvet Revolution, when the communist regime collapsed and market economy was reintroduced. On 1 January 1993, Czechoslovakia peacefully dissolved, with its constituent states becoming the independent states of the Czech Republic and Slovakia; the Czech Republic joined NATO in 1999 and the EU in 2004. The traditional English name "Bohemia" derives from Latin "Boiohaemum", which means "home of the Boii"; the current English name comes from the Polish ethnonym associated with the area, which comes from the Czech word Čech. The name comes from the Slavic tribe and, according to legend, their leader Čech, who brought them to Bohemia, to settle on Říp Mountain.
The etymology of the word Čech can be traced back to the Proto-Slavic root *čel-, meaning "member of the people. The country has been traditionally divided into three lands, namely Bohemia in the west, Moravia in the east, Czech Silesia in the northeast. Known as the lands of the Bohemian Crown since the 14th century, a number of other names for the country have been used, including Czech/Bohemian lands, Bohemian Crown and the lands of the Crown of Saint Wenceslas; when the country regained its independence after the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1918, the new name of Czechoslovakia was coined to reflect the union of the Czech and Slovak nations within the one country. After Czechoslovakia dissolved in 1992, the Czech part lac
San Marino the Republic of San Marino known as the Most Serene Republic of San Marino, is an enclaved microstate surrounded by Italy, situated on the Italian Peninsula on the northeastern side of the Apennine Mountains. Its size is just over 61 km2, with a population of 33,562, its capital is the City of San Marino and its largest settlement is Dogana in the municipality of Serravalle. San Marino has the smallest population of all the members of the Council of Europe. With Italian being the official language, along with strong financial and ethno-cultural connections, San Marino maintains close ties to its much larger neighbour; the country derives its name from Saint Marinus, a stonemason originating from the Roman colony on the island of Rab, in modern-day Croatia. In AD 257, according to legend, participated in the reconstruction of Rimini's city walls after their destruction by Liburnian pirates. Marinus went on to found an independent monastic community on Monte Titano in AD 301. San Marino is governed by the Constitution of San Marino, a series of six books written in Latin in the late 16th century, that dictate the country's political system, among other matters.
The country is considered to have the earliest written governing documents, or constitution, still in effect. The country's economy relies on finance, industry and tourism, it is among one of the wealthiest countries in the world in terms of GDP, with a figure comparable to the most developed European regions. San Marino is considered to have a stable economy, with one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe, no national debt and a budget surplus, has the world's highest rate of car ownership, being the only country with more vehicles than people. San Marino is one of the only three countries in the world to be surrounded by a single other country, it is the third smallest country in Europe, with only Vatican Monaco being smaller. It is the fifth smallest country in the world. Saint Marinus left the island of Rab in present-day Croatia with his lifelong friend Leo, went to the city of Rimini as a stonemason. After the Diocletianic Persecution following his Christian sermons, he escaped to the nearby Monte Titano, where he built a small church and thus founded what is now the city and state of San Marino, sometimes still called the "Titanic Republic".
The official date of the founding of what is now known as the Republic is 3 September 301. In 1320 the community of Chiesanuova chose to join the country. In 1463 San Marino was extended with the communities of Faetano, Fiorentino and Serravalle, after which the country's border have remained unchanged. In 1631, its independence was recognized by the Papacy; the advance of Napoleon's army in 1797 presented a brief threat to the independence of San Marino, but the country was saved from losing its liberty thanks to one of its Regents, Antonio Onofri, who managed to gain the respect and friendship of Napoleon. Thanks to his intervention, Napoleon, in a letter delivered to Gaspard Monge and commissary of the French Government for Science and Art, promised to guarantee and protect the independence of the Republic offering to extend its territory according to its needs; the offer was declined by the Regents. During the phase of the Italian unification process in the 19th century, San Marino served as a refuge for many people persecuted because of their support for unification.
In recognition of this support, Giuseppe Garibaldi accepted the wish of San Marino not to be incorporated into the new Italian state. The government of San Marino made United States President Abraham Lincoln an honorary citizen, he wrote in reply, saying that the republic proved that "government founded on republican principles is capable of being so administered as to be secure and enduring."During World War I, when Italy declared war on Austria-Hungary on 23 May 1915, San Marino remained neutral and Italy adopted a hostile view of Sammarinese neutrality, suspecting that San Marino could harbour Austrian spies who could be given access to its new radiotelegraph station. Italy tried to forcibly establish a detachment of Carabinieri in the republic and cut the republic's telephone lines when it did not comply. Two groups of ten volunteers joined Italian forces in the fighting on the Italian front, the first as combatants and the second as a medical corps operating a Red Cross field hospital.
The existence of this hospital caused Austria-Hungary to suspend diplomatic relations with San Marino. Following the conclusion of World War I, San Marino suffered from high rates of unemployment and inflation, leading to increased tensions between the lower and middle classes; the latter, fearing that the moderate government of San Marino would make concessions to the lower class majority, began to show support for the Sammarinese Fascist Party, founded in 1922 and styled off their Italian counterpart. PFS rule lasted from 1923 to 1943, during this time, they sought support from Benito Mussolini's fascist government in Italy. During World War II, San Marino remained neutral, although it was wrongly reported in an article from The New York Times that it had declared war on the United Kingdom on 17 September 19
Labour and Social Justice – The Electoral Alternative
Labour and Social Justice – The Electoral Alternative was a left-wing German political party founded in 2005 by activists disenchanted with the ruling Red-Green coalition government. On 16 June 2007 WASG merged with The Left Party. PDS to form The Left. At the time of its merger with The Left Party. PDS, WASG party membership stood at about 11,600 members; the party ran for the first time in the 2005 state election of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany's most populous state and a stronghold of the governing Social Democratic Party of Germany, with pastor Jürgen Klute as its front-runner. The party campaigned against what it considered "the neoliberal consensus" displayed by the governing centre-left political parties and the centre-right opposition alike; some of its main issues were opposition to cuts in provision of social benefits and to the favourable taxation of the wealthy. In the first few months of existence, it received a large amount of news coverage, had its first national convention from 6 May until 8 May 2005.
Oskar Lafontaine, a former major figure on the left wing of the SPD, joined the new party on 18 June 2005, became their North Rhine-Westphalia frontrunner for the general election on 18 September 2005. As the necessary steps for a merger with the Party of Democratic Socialism could not be taken fast enough, he advocated an electoral alliance with WASG members on the PDS's list, to which the WASG and PDS leaderships in principle agreed on 10 June 2005; the title of this list was The Left Party. PDS, which to this end - as a matter of formality - was adopted by the PDS as its new name, because changing a name was comparatively easy; the anticipated fusion was made official, with the WASG and The Left Party. PDS merging on 16 June 2007 to a party called The Left or colloquially, "the Left Party"; the draft programmatic orientation was influenced by the memorandums of the Working group for Alternative Economical Politics which counted one of the party's leading figures, economist Axel Troost, among its members.
The programme pleaded for a policy that strengthens domestic demand and centres around social justice. First and foremost, the tax breaks for large corporations and high incomes introduced by the SPD-Green coalition federal government starting from 1999 would have to be abolished and the federal tax on assets, which had ceased in 1997, reintroduced; the draft programme would have to be discussed until the spring 2005. The party emerged from the association "Wahlalternative Arbeit und soziale Gerechtigkeit e. V.", founded on 3 July 2004. The association itself had started as the merger of the groups Initiative Arbeit und soziale Gerechtigkeit and the Wahlalternative. Both groups had been founded in reaction to the government politics as laid down in the Agenda 2010 programme of the governing "Red-Green" coalition, which they consider as too neoliberal; the first meeting of the Wahlalternative took place on 5 March 2004 in the Berlin headquarters of the Confederation of German Trade Unions. The association had 4,056 members on 11 September 2004, the number rising to over 6,000 members shortly before Christmas 2004.
The first organisation in one of the states was founded on 17 July 2004 in the Saarland. The association WAsG e. V. the party's "birthplace", continued to exist along with the party. It may be transferred into a political foundation similar to the ones kept by other German political parties; the nascent party drew attention in the mass media because the foundation of a new left-wing party might have led to a schism in the SPD. Forerunners to such a development were the secession of the Independent Social Democratic Party of Germany during World War I, the foundation of the Greens in the late 1970s, the Democratic Socialists party founded by Karl-Heinz Hansen und Manfred Coppik in the early 1980s; the federal assembly in Nuremberg of the association WAsG e. V. decided to found a party, something that had never been ruled out as a possible outcome by members of the provisional leadership. After the strike vote among members in December 2004, the party was founded on 22 January 2005 in Göttingen.
The party's name came into being as Arbeit und soziale Gerechtigkeit – Die Wahlalternative. There was a lot of controversy about the new party's political orientation among its members. While some liked to establish it as a purely leftist party of socialist inclination, many others union representatives and former SPD members, aimed to provide a home for social conservatives and religious people who believe in a strong welfare state; the argument escalated in February 2005 but was soothed through a compromise, satisfactory for everyone. The compromise calls for a strict accord with welfare state orientation without excluding more socialist-minded members from the party; the party decided to take part in the regional election in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany's most populous state, on 22 May 2005. Eligibility was ensured in all regional counties, pastor Jürgen Klute of Herne was the leading candida
Communist Party of Austria
The Communist Party of Austria is a communist party in Austria. Established in 1918 as the Communist Party of German-Austria, it is one of the world's oldest Communist parties; the KPÖ was banned between 1933 and 1945 under both the Austrofascist regime and the Nazi German control of Austria after the 1938 Anschluss. It played an important role in the Austrian resistance against the Nazis; the party holds two seats in the Styrian Landtag, but has not had representation in the National Council since 1959. At the legislative election held on 29 September 2013, it won only 1.03% of the votes, well below the 4% minimum to obtain seats in the National Council. It is the Party of the European Left; the KPÖ was established on the 3 November 1918. Due to the Allies' sea blockade during the First World War, there was a supply shortage in Austria, resulting in workers protests; such actions included strikes such as the 1918 "Jännerstreik". In 1917, concurrent with the Russian October Revolution, the left wing of the workers' movement established the KPÖ.
Ruth Fischer, Franz Koritschoner, Lucien Laurat were among the co-founders. Attempts to establish a Räterepublik in Austria resulted in developments different to those in Germany or Russia, as the Räte were only able to establish themselves in isolated, high-population density areas such as Vienna and the industrial areas of Upper Austria. However, a "Red Guard" was soon integrated with the Volkswehr. On 12 November 1918, the party attempted a coup d'état, not professionally organised and not authorised by the Soviet government. Within hours, the coup attempt was defeated. During the First Republic, the KPÖ had little influence and failed to gain a single mandate in parliament, in part because of the ability of the Social Democratic Party to unite the workers as an opposition movement; the party was seriously weakened by internal factional struggles. In parallel with the ascent of Joseph Stalin to General Secretary in the Soviet Union in the early 1920s, the KPÖ was refashioned in accordance with the principles of democratic centralism, party discipline was more enforced.
Due to these reforms, the party was able to overcome its factional struggles by the late-1920s. In 1933 the KPÖ was banned by an emergency decree of the Austrofascist government of Engelbert Dollfuss but continued to operate underground. According to internal sources, the KPÖ had been prepared for this situation since the mid-1920s. After the Social Democratic Party was banned, many former SPÖ supporters and functionaries, such as Ernst Fischer and Christian Broda, worked underground in cooperation with the KPÖ; the KPÖ took part in the failed workers rebellion on 12 February 1934, sparked by the militia Republikanischer Schutzbund. It was ill-fated; the KPÖ held a line, in disagreement with the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, such as disagreeing with Stalin’s branding of social democracy as a form of "social fascism" in the late 1920s. The Austrian communists dissent was avant-garde, with their refusal to condemn Social Democracy reflecting aspects of the 7th World Congress of the Comintern in 1935.
The Austrian communists' tolerant stance opened their party to an influx of more disappointed Social Democrats. After the crushing of the February 1934 uprising by the federal army and the Heimwehr, the KPÖ grew from 4,000 to 16,000 members; the KPÖ took an independent stance from the mainstream in its views about nationhood and an Austrian identity separate from Germany, with leading communist intellectual Alfred Klahr writing that the view that the Austrian people were a part of Germany was theoretically unfounded. In contrast, many Austrian Social Democrats regarded the affiliation to the German nation as natural and desirable. Echoing the thoughts of Klahr, the KPÖ expressed its firm belief in an independent Austria when the country was annexed to Nazi Germany in March 1938. In their historic call An das österreichische Volk, the party denounced Adolf Hitler’s dictatorship and called on all people to fight together for an independent Austria; as a result of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact of 1939, a number of Austrian communists-in-exile, such as KPÖ founder member Franz Koritschoner, were deported from the Soviet Union and handed over to the Nazis.
After war broke out between Germany and the Soviet Union, the Soviets reverted their stance and tried to support the Austrian Communists against Nazi Germany. During the Third Reich, the KPÖ played an important role in the Austrian resistance, fighting side-by-side with former political enemies such as Christian socialists, Catholics and farmers against Hitler's regime; the KPÖ took the order of the Allied Powers in the Moscow Declaration from October 1943, which called for Austria's "own contribution" to its liberation from fascism as a precondition for the resurrection of their own state. More than 4,000 communists were imprisoned or sent to concentration camps and more than 2,000 lost their live during the resistance, including 13 members of the KPÖ's central committee. There was an Austrian communist resistance network in Belgium, the Österreichische Freiheitsfront. There is some disagreement amongst historians if the KPÖ fought the Nazis out of patriotism, or followed the pattern of the ideological fight of communism against fascism