"Some 60% voted to keep the draft with 40% in favour of setting up a purely professional army, in early results."
Well, perhaps a bit disappointing in my opinion. I guess the question turned more out to be "neutrality" vs. draft. The illusion of neutrality apparently still goes in Austria, eventhough they are a member in the European Union with common foreign & security policy and some common defence guarantees. Austria, Finland, Sweden and Ireland are not neutral. In the European integration context there are not that many reasons not to cooperate militarily, especially if "neutrality" means retaining obsoleties like conscription.
Who would benefit from banning the draft and can they vote?
Nemmerle;5678359Who would benefit from banning the draft and can they vote?
You'd think that every male who had to do conscription atleast has an opinion on it. Many people are disappointed with having to do civilian service, and some are disappointed with the military service after doing it because it can feel quite unneeded. Most are probably okay with it after completing it.
I suppose the strongest support for conscription comes from older male population that remembers the conscription as a golden age of their youth. ;) Women mostly against it, but more indifferent?
That referendum actually allowed age 16+ citizens of Austria to vote, so young people who haven't been drafted yet could vote on it. Still, apparently no big feelings on the issue and low turnout.
I was not aware conscription was being dropped by nations as the century went, I thought it was still a feature on countries. Austria voting to keep it can be seen as an affirmation for its neutral position but at the same time, it seems the ruling government placed itself behind an end to the practice, but the referendum clearly did not go their way.
For the record these are nations that still have conscription in Europe, via BBC
Denmark Estonia Greece Norway Turkey
Belarus Cyprus Finland Moldova Russia Switzerland Ukraine