Remembering Berlin

bw the wall

As we foolishly speak about constructing walls to the South, Berliners celebrate the 25th year the dreaded wall fell to a populist movement. I look back over the past summer in Berlin. From a foreign eye, the division the city suffered is not apparent, even when visiting the Alexanderplatz area. Berlin, who had suffered through 12 years of Hitler and the disasters that followed, further suffered division over another 50 year period.

bw 5bw 3Alliierten Museum has a very unassuming Checkpoint Charlie, which you can look into (above), as well as the Watchtower and a section of the Wall (below).

bw 4 allierbw 2Plaque commemorating the Watchtower and Wall section taken from the Potdamer Platz area.

bw checkpointAnother relic from the past, housed inside the Alliierten Museum

In the Potsdamer Platz area is an actual Watchtower which you can go into. As it is only open certain days, and certain times, I missed it. Not far away in another neighborhood, the actual area referred to as Checkpoint Charlie  (below) has become a festive tourist magnet.

bw checkpoint compositebw plaquebw composite commie

bw typography of terrorDisplay area outside of Topographie des Terror (Typography of Terror museum).

This is quite unlike the Topographie des Terror museum which is a few blocks away. Directly in front of a display area, sits a an entire city block of the wall intact (directly above).

nord baShot of the chaining of the Nordbahnhof subway station, which existed as a “ghost” station in which the train traveled through the station as passengers glimpsed East Berlin on their way through to other parts of West Berlin.

bw in the bahnhof areaOutside the station, the pretty green area was the “no man’s land” filled with barbed wire, flying bullets from the Watchtowers and landmines, to keep East Berliners inside away from the Fascist elements of the West!

bw nord wall outside areabw more bahnhof outsideDSC_0746City model showing the division of the East (left area, follow wall) and West (right).

bw before victimsbw victims1bw victims centerbw victims lastVictims of the Wall

bw last shotSo as we proudly erect walls, we might want to take a look at the faces above, as one day we may be constructing our own Wall of Shame, for those who die in an escape to freedom.

 

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