Italy and Austria had enjoyed close relations for much of the history of the game, from first belonging to the same alliance, PEACE GC, to later - once the alliance had ended - remaining close nations pursuing independent courses from the major alliances. However, Italy began to shift away from its traditional allies in June 2010, due to internal disputes within the Entente - a smaller alliance they belonged to which they viewed as increasingly coming closer to Phoenix. Officially withdrawing from this alliance on July 6th, they aided directly in EDEN operations against former Entente allies in that month, and began a shift towards EDEN.
Austria, though not in the Entente, was close to its member nations - and in the next month, August 2010, would go onto Italian radar. As a part of a larger EDEN operation against Hungary, a two front offensive was planned. In the plan, Poland would approach from the north, attacking through the Czech Republic and Austria on the way to Hungary. Italy would attack from the South, attacking through Austria. The first move was made by Poland, who struck the Czech Republic on August 23rd, and easily took a lead in the first two simultaneous battles in Moravia and Northern Bohemia. The Czech Republic had only Southern Bohemia left, and the loss of this region would have prevented a congressional election from taking place - causing open citizenship.
Mindful of this, and the knowledge Austria would be the next target of Poland, on August 24th President Thomas765 of Austria authorized a swap with Hungary, through Burgenland and Lower Austria, in an attempt to put Poland into a block, halt the advance, and protect the Czech Republic from a pre-congress wipe. The move successfully put Poland into a block - but the second phase of the two pronged attack was soon to follow.
Later on the same day - August 24th - Italy launched the invasion into the Austrian region of Salzburg, taking Austria by surprise. Well prepared for an attack, Italy made easy ground at first and secured the entirety of the battle map in the early fighting. The Austrian Government prepared its defense, which would be mounted in the final hours of the battle on August 25th. With the help of allied forces, and the OmniCorp militia, fierce fighting broke out as the counterattack moved into full swing. While Italian forces far outnumbered Austrian, and allied forces, the Austrian defenders outmanouevered the attackers - and remarkably, had secured the full map by the end of the battle, driving Italy from it completely.
The Battle in Salzburg having been a success for Austria, Italy began openly taunting Austria to counterattack. Instead, Austria proposed peace and issued a statement in the Italian press calling for a restoration of the old friendship, stating "We do not ask for reparations. We ask merely for a clear sightedness, that shows our nations should not be at each others throats, and should instead unite around common ideals once more."
However, the peace proposal would be rejected. On September 3rd, Italy opened its second attack, this time in Tyrol. This time Italy brought even more firepower into the fray. Fighting raged on and again Austria and its allies engaged in an intense defense campaign. Retaking control of the map and turning the tide - after the heaviest fighting in Austria's history to this point - Italy again was dealt a defeat in the closing days of the presidential term of Wisp. Italy's Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Scoundrel, and Austria's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Rangeley, continued the earlier negotiations. Scoundrel agreed in principle to peace, respecting Austria's non-alligned stance and willingness to put the war behind both nations. While was was unable to put the policy into action himself, and the Italian congress remained reluctant to formally close the war, Scoundrel was elected president on September 5th, 2010 - beginning a period of tenuous peace.
The peace continued to hold with no new attacks being opened in the early part of September, with Italy's new President, Scoundrel, upholding it. However, the government in Austria had changed as well: with a new president and new goals, on September 21st a 48 hour congress vote was introduced to join the Phoenix alliance. As Scoundrel had accepted peace under the premise of Austrian non-alignment, Italian pressure for war began to grow. The result of the congress proposal was closely watched and bitterly contested within Austria, with disputes existing on whether the process followed constitutional procedure as outlined. On September 23rd, the poll concluded with a result in the affirmative; Austria's government applied to join the Phoenix alliance.
However, the application would not be accepted, and on September 28th Austria's membership was rejected. With the premise for the tenuous peace having been broken, and Austria now rejected by Phoenix, Italy opened its next strike against Salzburg on September 28th. This battle saw Italy overpower Austrian forces with the new military module, and with limited international help in comparison to previous battles. On September 29th, Salzburg was conquered, with Italy winning 8 rounds to Austria's 1.
The next battles in October continued in this vein: Styria, Carinthia, Salzburg, Lower Austria, and Upper Austria all fell in succession. The most competitive battle, Upper Austria, saw Austria win 4 rounds to Italy's 8, while Styria and Lower Austria fell 8-0. On October 30th, another conflict would begin - the Slovak-Austrian War.
At the beginning of September, the war remained in place but nothing happened until Austria attempted to join Phoenix later on in the month. Scoundrel, the new president, opened up a battle in Austria. Throughout September and October, Austria lost several regions and was eventually wiped off the map in November just before the congress election. A resistance war in Vorarlberg was won and prevented Austria from having open citizenship. Alfagrem contributed nearly 350,000 damage in multiple resistance wars. In December, it was again wiped off the map by Italy. Italy no longer holds any Austrian regions.