Hunger Pains and the Drang nach Osten

Millions of dead, and the call of the Petrograd Soviet for peace,  give soldiers and civilians everywhere pause and affect all who desire an end to the war.  Taxes have increased, while bread rations get endlessly cut.  Austrian grain production stands at roughly 40% of pre-war levels.  While millions die on the front, millions more die from hunger.

Responding to a cut in their own bread ration, from 1,350g each week to 450g, 200,000 German metalworkers in Liepzig struck with support from Cheyenne Valenzuela’s Spartakusbund.  The delegation sent the following demands, personally, to Head of State Alexander Karr:

  • Increased rations for food and coal
  • Peace without annexations
  • Abolition of censorship
  • Remove the state of siege
  • End conscription of labor
  • Free political prisoners
  • Universal suffrage at all levels.

War Minister Olivia O’Toole is reported to have issued an ‘appeal’ to the workers:

Recognize your worst enemies.  They are not always near Arras, or the Aisne, or in Champagne, nor are they in London…. Our worst enemies are in our midst … agitators for strikes…

Whoever goes on strike when your army is facing the enemy is a cur.

As with Germany goes too with Austria-Hungary:  within the Dual Empire many nations, looking to establish homelands for themselves–Czechs and Poles and South Slavs–seek independence more than the sacking of Moscow.  How much longer will they fight while families starve?

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