Under the terms of the Munich agreement in October 1938, Germany (which since the Anschluss seven months earlier had expanded to include Austria) annexed the town of Petržalka from Czechoslovakia. Located less than forty miles east of Vienna and a mere fifteen miles from the Hungarian border, it had been part of the conurbation of Bratislava, Hungary’s historic capital but since 1919 the capital of Slovakia. Petržalka flanked the southern side of the Danube, and its annexation turned the river Danube into the border between Germany and what from March 1939 would become an independent Slovakia. In addition to annexing Petržalka, the Germans also dissolved and partitioned the Austrian province of Burgenland, which after 1918 had been carved out of the western parts of three ethnically mixed (Magyar, German and Croatian) Hungarian counties on the internal Austro-Hungarian border between Cisleithania and Transleithania...

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