In early 1938, Adolph Hitler was at the top of his game. And the Anschluss, or the annexation of Austria, was a key piece in expanding the 'living space' (Lebensraum) of Nazi Germany. Berlin was the capital of National Socialism. Munich, its spiritual seat. Vienna, thanks to Hitler's Austrian birth, schooling, and work there, its incubator. Vienna, Hitler was fond in saying, was 'the jewel in the crown.'
Today, in a city known more for its opera and waltzes, Secessionist artists (Gustav Klimt amongst them) cappuccino mit schlag (strudel on the side), Spanish riding horses, and the Blue Danube (now, more a murky, industrial grey), there's little physical evidence that this was Adolph Hitler's 'hometown. Or, of the triumphal return of the once-disgraced, failed local art student and draft-dodger as this city's prodigal son -- homeboy, according to Viennese at the time, made 'good.'
Vienna's memory stream runs thin. Its memory lapse, deep.