In: Jahrbuch für Historische Kommunismusforschung 2016. Berlin: Metropol Verlag, pp. 131–148.
In order to infiltrate resistance to Nazi regime in Austria after the Anschluss in 1938, the Viennese Gestapo primarily engaged informers (V-Leute), who originally came from the same social and political milieu as that which they now penetrate on the order of the Gestapo. Some of them acted voluntarily; the majority, however, (especially former anti-Nazi activists) were strongly pressured by the Gestapo. Although their number was comparatively small, some of those informers were very “efficient“ in their infiltration of different resistance groups. One of the main targets was the illegal Communist Party of Austria. In 1942 the Gestapo set up a ‘Central Committee’, which consisted of five “authentic“ communist sympathisers and three of the Gestapo’s informants. As a result, after three months some 250 activists were arrested and many of them sentenced to death.