Berlin and the fall of the wall 30 years on – Read more
When Berlin built it’s wall in 1961, it became the epicentre of the Cold War with the notorious physical feature dividing Germany’s capital between the Communist east and the capitalist west; tearing families, friends and neighbours apart.
The Berlin Wall during it’s time did untold emotional damage to German society all along it’s stretch through the centre of the city, with numerous attempts to break through it ending often in death as friends and families tried to re-unite. “Death Strips” would be created in no-mans land areas along parts of the stretch of the Berlin Wall to prevent East Germans from escaping. Place names along the Wall entered the Cold War lexicon like ‘Checkpoint Charlie’ which was the city’s official crossing point where armed soldiers from the communist bloc would face their American enemies. Other place-names that became infamous Cold War symbols were Potsdamerplatz, where you can still see old bits of the wall doted around the now slick new urban landscape.
That all changed one night in November 1989 when 20,000 East Germans flooded the border at Bolhomer Strasse and crossed over to the west, precipitating the eventual collapse of the Berlin Wall and the ending of the Cold War soon after.