Piece of Berlin WallNovember 19, 2013 – 04:22 pm

Piece of Berlin Wall

The Berlin Wall fell 25 years ago Sunday, and the world is taking time to recall one of the great turning points of recent history. The anniversary of its collapse is an opportunity for reflection about how far humanity has come since the days when Germany stood divided, and a visit to a piece of the fallen wall is a great way to establish a physical connection with history. In the years since the nearly 90-mile-long Berlin Wall was torn down concrete…

Where was the Berlin Wall built?December 19, 2013 – 11:35 am

Where was the Berlin Wall built?

This Week In History: Wk 45 (9 November 1989) For the first time since it was built in 1961, free movement is allowed through the Berlin Wall. In 1989, people were allowed to move freely through checkpoints in the Berlin Wall for the first time since it was built in 1961. The wall was intended to prevent the movement of people between communist East Berlin and capitalist West Berlin. Its subsequent destruction became a powerful symbol of the end of…

Construction of Berlin WallJune 26, 2014 – 04:28 pm

Construction of Berlin Wall

“DIE Mauer muss weg!” (“Away with the wall!”) shouted the hundreds of thousands of East Berliners who demonstrated in October and November 1989 against East Germany s fading communist regime. Their hopes were realised on November 9th as one checkpoint after another was opened (see article) and the hated wall started to crumble. Thunderous applause greeted the removal of each chunk of a cement boundary that had divided not just a city, but also a country…

Length of Berlin WallApril 9, 2014 – 07:08 am

Length of Berlin Wall

After the end of World War II, the Allies took over the fallen city of Berlin—with the US, UK, and France administering control over what would become part of West Germany in 1949 and the USSR taking control of the East. That division was crystallized with the building of a wall dividing the former capital in 1961. In 1989, exactly 25 years ago today, the Berlin Wall finally fell. The city has marked it with a beautiful temporary art installation…

East Germany Berlin WallMarch 22, 2014 – 05:13 pm

East Germany Berlin Wall

In 1987, speaking at the Brandenburg Gate in West Berlin, Ronald Reagan issued a challenge to Mikhail Gorbachev. “If you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalisation, come here to this gate, ” Reagan said. “Mr Gorbachev, open this gate. Mr Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” Reagan’s speech was triumphalist. He knew that communism was on the ropes. Yet Gorbachev did not rise to the challenge and…

Collapse of Berlin WallMay 4, 2015 – 04:51 pm

Collapse of Berlin Wall

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev walks across Pariser Platz near the Brandenburg Gate on the eve of the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Photograph: Target Presse Agentur Gmbh/Getty Images As Berliners watch 8, balloons being released into the night sky this evening, old divisions between east and west will symbolically vanish into thin air with them. Yet the runup to the festivities has already served up plenty of reminders…

Map of the Berlin WallOctober 24, 2014 – 01:18 pm

Map of the Berlin Wall

“Where was the Wall?” is undoubtedly one of the questions asked most frequently by people visiting Berlin. Many native Berliners and newer residents, however, are also interested in seeing remnants of the former border installations inside the city. As part of its overall concept for the Berlin Wall, the Senate intends to preserve the existing remnants of the Wall and to post additional signs and information to give people a deeper understanding of…

Berlin Wall facts and historyApril 12, 2014 – 02:22 pm

Berlin Wall facts and history

With the rise of communism following the end of World War II, and the increased control Eastern Bloc nations exercised over their citizens, what began as a trickle of malcontents became millions of people fleeing the Soviet-controlled countries in search of freedom. In an attempt to stop the exodus and to make a statement to the rest of the world, East Germany built the Berlin Wall 50 years ago this month, in August 1961. Here are five interesting…

Why was the Berlin Wall built?November 11, 2014 – 08:38 am

Why was the Berlin Wall built?

It appeared literally overnight, and kept East Germans imprisoned for more than a quarter of a century. Exactly 50 years ago, a tiny group of people masterminded a mammoth operation in utmost secrecy, using a vast amount of resources which their country, ravaged by shortages, could not afford. The Berlin Wall was built - or rather, laid out in barbed wire - on August 13, 1961 in the space of just a few hours. Yet it was to stand until 1989, the defining…

What reasons was the Berlin Wall built?June 9, 2015 – 07:37 am

What reasons was the Berlin Wall built?

Seeing the Berlin Wall for the first time can be somewhat underwhelming. At 3.6m high it doesn t seem so formidable particularly when you compare it with medieval city walls, but you have to understand that the Berlin Wall was actually a border system - and an extremely effective one at that. What people identify with today as being the Berlin Wall was only the final obstacle in a series of walls, located on either side of an area up to 100m wide…