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Lidové noviny - Czech Republic | Friday, August 31, 2007

Discord between the Czech Republic and Austria

Austria's Defence Minister Norbert Darabos has repeatedly criticised plans for a US military base in the Czech Republic as part of the US's missile defence shield. Luboš Palata loses his patience with the minister: "Since the Cold War, the Austrians have had different views on Russia from the rest of the West. Vienna did good business with Brezhnev, and if anyone regretted the collapse of communism it was the [Austrian] businessmen who as 'neutrals' profited substantially from our totalitarianism. Today Austria does good business with Iran, so it's no wonder that Mr Darabos has cast himself in the role of Teheran's advocate... The Austrians, or at least some of them, are like this, too. We could put up with it; after all that's their business. But it's our business whether we have a US military base or not. Since October 28, 1918 the Austrians have had no right to interfere. We are no longer one of Vienna's satellite states."

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