Hannes Richter

From the Editor

Hannes Richter

Dear Readers,

meran_new.jpgAustrian Federal President Thomas Klestil died on July 6, 2004. We wish to thank everybody for their letters and messages of condolences which we have passed on to his family in Vienna. Dr. Klestil spent eighteen years of his diplomatic career in the United States and will be remembered as a builder of bridges in difficult times. In the words of US Secretary of State Colin Powell, “HE WAS A GREAT STATESMAN AND SERVANT OF HIS PEOPLE, AS WELL AS A SERVANT OF ALL HUMANKIND. HE WILL BE MISSED.”

A few months ago, the socalled Austria Center was officially opened in the heart of Manhatten. The new center combines trade and tourism, it houses the Austrian Trade Commission New York and the Austrian National Tourist Office.

Summing up her three-and-half years term as Deputy Chief of Mission at the Austrian Embassy in Washington, D.C., Melitta Schubert wrote a retrospective essay on the challenges and chances of our transatlantic relations.

You will find some basic information in this issue on the consequences of the historic enlargement of the European Union of May 1, 2004.

A middle-sized Austrian company has developed an unmanned minuscule helicopter which has aroused much international attention. It can collect and send back data on highly sensitive areas.

Thanks to Klaus Wittauer and his company, KW Selection, the Austrian wine market is gradually expanding in the U.S. Read about how he does it.

Around 140 years ago, the Austrian Ignaz Pilat designed a project for the restoration of Central Park in New York City. Thanks to Austrian volunteers and financial contributions his unfinished project will be relaunched.

If you want to know what the Austrian pioneer of diving and marine biology, Hans Hass, is doing at the age of 85, you will find it here. Last year, a memorial was set up for another pioneer, the biochemist Erwin Chargaff, who was best known for his studies on DNA.
A series of silver coins was issued by Austrian Mint entitled “Austria on the High Seas” which is, alas, a historical fact.

Yours sincerely,
Christoph Meran