Tyrolean transition

Central Europe was in moribund condition by the end of 1918. World War One may just have ended, but its ruinous effects would be felt for a long time. Austria had politicians driven by hatred and anti-Semitic sentiment in abundance while people in cities and on the countryside where starving.

“14 Tage 1918” offers insights into a society wondering what the future would hold. Plagued by economic scarcities and sociological fragility, things could only get better. As we know today, the situation even deteriorated.

Based on 53 newspaper cuttings – from malicious editorials to classified advertisements underlining the dismal situation of most citizens – historians and journalists analyse the year 1918 with a special focus on Tyrol. Articles tell from students’ demands for participation and progressive lectures, mail censorship, cultural diversions and the reduction of working hours to eight a day. The latter achievement was ditched by the current right-wing Austrian government just a few months ago.

“14 Tage 1918” portrays a country which is far from making peace with one’s past.

14 Tage 1918
By Ivona Jelcic & Matthias Breit
Published by Tyrolia (www.tyrolia.at)

Rapid brace for Bulls after EL exit

Rapid want to send a clear message in domestic competition after last night’s excruciating Europa League result.

The Green-Whites were sent packing by Italian giants Inter at Giuseppe Meazza (0-4) after having suffered a narrow 0-1 defeat on home soil last week. “This result won’t make me scrutinise everything. We will draw strength from this defeat,” concluded coach Dietmar Kühbauer.

Rapid’s next opponents, however, reached the next round in the EL. Red Bull Salzburg had the upper hand over against Belgian outfit Club Brugge (4-0). The Marco Rose side were under considerable pressure after losing the first leg of the knockout stage encounter. Now Salzburg – assured and confident – face Rapid (Allianz Stadion Vienna, Sunday 5pm). A thrilling battle can be expected as matches between Austria’s most successful club of the past decade, RBS, and SK Rapid, the country’s most popular, have never been uneventful occasions.

Red Bull did not just make progress on international level but also in the ÖFB Cup. The Bulls beat Wiener Neustadt. Rapid, who have been struggling in recent years to catch up with Salzburg, celebrated a convincing 5-2 victory against Hartberg. Sunday’s match is their opening Bundesliga fixture of this year – and while Salzburg sit comfortably on top of the table, only slim chances remain for Rapid to reach the championship playoff.

>> http://www.skrapid.at

On a mission behind bars

Numerous books have examined radical Islam but only a few have approached the topic as competent and captivating as Ramazan Demir.

“Unter Extremisten” tells from naive young men behind bars who have been hit by tidal waves of disillusionment. Having suffered great misfortunes in life, the heinous propaganda of the Islamic State became their beacon of hope. Demir – a Vienna-based imam and one of the few Muslim spiritual care staff at Austrian correctional facilities –

avoids the well-trodden paths. Based on many years of experience, he is not sugarcoating anything as he tells from the inmates’ background and their fascination for Isis.

Demir describes Vienna’s Josefstadt jail as a place of despair and frustration and calls for more resources and spiritual welfare staff to prevent inmates’ taking the wrong turn after having served their sentence.

“Unter Extremisten” offers intense insights into Demir’s very specific task. The author not just recounts how he has tried to get radicalised prisoners back on a peaceful track. He also debunks some of the Islamists’ most popular claims, from their alleged superiority to the true meaning of ‘jihad’ and the role women.

Unter Extremisten
By Ramazan Demir
Published by edition a (www.edition-a.at)

Cup chance after EL blow for Rapid

Rapid hope to make progress on domestic level after having suffered a narrow defeat against Inter.

It seems the Green-Whites successfully worked on their defensive frailties during the winter break as the only goal in Thursday’s Europa League clash came from a controversial penalty. Now Dietmar Kühbauer’s team are fully focused on Sunday’s ÖFB Cup quarter final against Hartberg (Allianz Stadion, 5.15pm).

The fixture would be the ideal opportunity for the Hütteldorf outfit to take revenge on Hartberg the low-budget club from Styria as Rapid took a devastating 0-3 pounding in the league. Rapid most recently reached the final of the Austrian cup in 2017. Bundesliga powerhouse Red Bull Salzburg won the match which took place in Klagenfurt. This year, the final is set to take place at the Generali Arena, home turf of Rapid’s city rivals FK Austria.

Tomorrow’s cup match is Rapid’s second competitive fixture this year. The team prepared for the second half of the season in Belek, Turkey, before meeting Slovenian side NK Triglav Kranj for a friendly in Vienna on Friday last week (5-2).

>> http://www.skrapid.at

>> tsv-hartberg-fussball.at

Busy transfer period ends as Rapid face Inter

Rapid supporters were unsure whether to be terrified or thrilled about their team’s next European opponents.

The Viennese side – who look back on a disappointing spell in domestic football – face Inter on Thursday (6.55pm). Few experts think that kicking out the former Champions League winners is within the bounds of possibility for the squad of Dietmar Kühbauer. However, Vienna’s Allianz Stadion will be sold out when Rapid play their first competitive match in 2019.

Much criticism has been levelled at the Green-Whites’ transfer policy. The club – who prepared for upcoming tasks in Turkish seaside resort Belek – signed Senegalese striker Aliou Badji from Djurgardens earlier this week. Already in January, Rapid announced that Jeremy Guillemenot, midfielder Aleksandar Kostic and keeper Christoph Haas would leave the club.

Rapid’s final friendly ahead of the clash with the powerfully attractive Serie A opponents took place on Friday. The Kühbauer side struggled to produce a significant number of chances to score in the first half against NK Triglav Kranj from Slovenia. Rapid’s performance improved significantly after the break. Defender Mario Sonnleitner came off the bench to score a beautiful header in the 5-2 victory.

>> http://www.skrapid.at