British Missions in the Austrian Republic
Some documents suggest that the unconcern about Austria largely stemmed from Lloyd George’s conviction that Vienna could never recover from the shock of the war. Balfour contested that the reconstruction of Austria was in Britain’s interest, but he concurred with the opinion of the Prime Minister on the grim prospects of full recovery. Their pessimism was partly confirmed by the first reports from the starving capital of the Austrian Republic. Sir T. Montgomery–Cuninghame, for some time the only British representative in post-war Vienna, was despondent and exasperated to see the rapid disappearance of an ancient and affluent society in the heart of Europe. Despite this, Lord Curzon was convinced that Austrian recovery was possible and, moreover, was in the interest of Great Britain.
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