More than half of Austria's population think it highly likely that the Nazis would be elected if they were readmitted as a party, an opinion poll has revealed
A 42% agreed with the view that life "wasn't all bad under the Nazis", and 39% said they thought a recurrence of anti-Semitic persecution was likely in Austria
The disturbing findings were contained in a poll conducted for the Vienna newspaper, Der Standard in advance of Tuesday's 75th anniversary of Austria's Nazi annexation - a date which still counts as one of the most shameful and controversial in the country's history, reports The Independent.
Tens of thousands of Austrians gave Adolf Hitler and his troops a rapturous welcome when they invaded the country unopposed in March 1938.
Austria fought World War II as part of Nazi Germany and many Austrians helped run Nazi death camps. Yet for decades, post-war Austria frequently perpetuated the myth that it was a victim of Nazi oppression.
Der Standard said its poll was designed to show how today's Austrians judged Nazi rule
Germany's popular magazine- Stern - described the poll's findings as "shocking".
The poll also showed that 61 per cent of Austrian adults wanted to see a "strong man" in charge of government, and 54 per cent said they thought it would be "highly likely" that the Nazis would win seats in they were allowed to take part in an election
Some 46% of those polled said they believed Austria was a victim of Nazi oppression in 1938, while 61% said they believed that "enough" had been done to reappraise Austria's Nazi past.