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Berlin Wall Day


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#1 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 0225 AM

Happy Anniversary Berliners :)

 


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#2 Ssnake

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 0352 AM

THANK YOU, HASSELHOFF!


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#3 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 0359 AM

Nah, David Bowie and Genesis innit. :D


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#4 Ssnake

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 0755 AM

I don't know who this "Bowie" is, but his concert surely supported the commie bastards in '87. The Hoff's tunes seduced the politbureau, confused Günter Schabowski ("Das ist, meiner Kenntnis nach ... sofort, unverzüglich..."), and let the wall crumble. I heard it from The Hoff, and who'd know better than him what he did that night?


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#5 BansheeOne

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 0827 AM

On the mention of Bowie, I'll throw out the cover of "Heroes" recorded at the same Berlin studio by the Hollywood Vampires (Johnny Depp, Alice Cooper, Joe Perry et al) simply because I think they did a good job with it.

 

 

Ronald Reagan doesn't get enough local respect for his role in the runup IMO. The US has long wanted to put a statue of him in the spot where he held his "tear down this wall speech", but the City of Berlin has been niggling around, pointing to a plaque already in place. Finally they put the statue on the balcony of the US embassy right next to the Brandenburg Gate (though actually on the eastern side); Mike Pompeo just officially inaugurated it during his visit on the occasion.

 

51171587_403.jpg

 

Of course I've long advocated for a whole ensemble of statues around the Gate to commemorate events. As you look to the left of Reagan holding his speech in the center towards the Reichstag and today's chancellor's office, there would be Helmut Kohl watching events with his usual Buddha's look, George H. W. Bush standing squarely behind him. Next to them is Hans-Dietrich Genscher, lifting a foot like he's about to board another plane for a diplomatic mission.

 

Off to the right of Reagan there is Margaret Thatcher furiously kicking her shoes off, and Francois Mitterand with a Gallic look of disdain on his face. On the eastern side of the Gate, Mikhail Gorbachev tells Erich Honecker "dangers await only those not reacting to life". Honecker however has planted his fingers firmly in his ears, while Egon Krenz prepares to slip a dagger into his back. And there's Günter Schabowski looking at his reading card with a puzzled face like he thinks "did I do that?"


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#6 Murph

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 0833 AM

Happy fall day!  I was in Berlin, I saw the wall, I crossed at Checkpoint Charlie, I saw the hopelessness of East Berlin.


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#7 Ssnake

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 1116 AM

...and Berlin was the good-looking part.


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#8 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 1142 AM

On the mention of Bowie, I'll throw out the cover of "Heroes" recorded at the same Berlin studio by the Hollywood Vampires (Johnny Depp, Alice Cooper, Joe Perry et al) simply because I think they did a good job with it.

 

 

Ronald Reagan doesn't get enough local respect for his role in the runup IMO. The US has long wanted to put a statue of him in the spot where he held his "tear down this wall speech", but the City of Berlin has been niggling around, pointing to a plaque already in place. Finally they put the statue on the balcony of the US embassy right next to the Brandenburg Gate (though actually on the eastern side); Mike Pompeo just officially inaugurated it during his visit on the occasion.

 

51171587_403.jpg

 

Of course I've long advocated for a whole ensemble of statues around the Gate to commemorate events. As you look to the left of Reagan holding his speech in the center towards the Reichstag and today's chancellor's office, there would be Helmut Kohl watching events with his usual Buddha's look, George H. W. Bush standing squarely behind him. Next to them is Hans-Dietrich Genscher, lifting a foot like he's about to board another plane for a diplomatic mission.

 

Off to the right of Reagan there is Margaret Thatcher furiously kicking her shoes off, and Francois Mitterand with a Gallic look of disdain on his face. On the eastern side of the Gate, Mikhail Gorbachev tells Erich Honecker "dangers await only those not reacting to life". Honecker however has planted his fingers firmly in his ears, while Egon Krenz prepares to slip a dagger into his back. And there's Günter Schabowski looking at his reading card with a puzzled face like he thinks "did I do that?"

 

On the mention of Bowie, I'll throw out the cover of "Heroes" recorded at the same Berlin studio by the Hollywood Vampires (Johnny Depp, Alice Cooper, Joe Perry et al) simply because I think they did a good job with it.

 

 

Ronald Reagan doesn't get enough local respect for his role in the runup IMO. The US has long wanted to put a statue of him in the spot where he held his "tear down this wall speech", but the City of Berlin has been niggling around, pointing to a plaque already in place. Finally they put the statue on the balcony of the US embassy right next to the Brandenburg Gate (though actually on the eastern side); Mike Pompeo just officially inaugurated it during his visit on the occasion.

 

51171587_403.jpg

 

Of course I've long advocated for a whole ensemble of statues around the Gate to commemorate events. As you look to the left of Reagan holding his speech in the center towards the Reichstag and today's chancellor's office, there would be Helmut Kohl watching events with his usual Buddha's look, George H. W. Bush standing squarely behind him. Next to them is Hans-Dietrich Genscher, lifting a foot like he's about to board another plane for a diplomatic mission.

 

Off to the right of Reagan there is Margaret Thatcher furiously kicking her shoes off, and Francois Mitterand with a Gallic look of disdain on his face. On the eastern side of the Gate, Mikhail Gorbachev tells Erich Honecker "dangers await only those not reacting to life". Honecker however has planted his fingers firmly in his ears, while Egon Krenz prepares to slip a dagger into his back. And there's Günter Schabowski looking at his reading card with a puzzled face like he thinks "did I do that?"

 

....Churchill sticking two fingers up to anyone looking on, Bomber Harris rubbing his hands together, Clem Attlee shrugging his shoulders and absolving all responsibility, Margaret Thatcher frantically bricking the wall up again....

 

I was reading the other day that last year they 'rediscovered' a forgotten section of wall, and supposedly its going to be restored. Apparently part of it is the last surviving bit of Wall Mk1 and consists of the lower level of bricked up tenements. All very John Le Carre.

https://www.citylab....in-wall/551363/


Edited by Stuart Galbraith, 09 November 2019 - 1157 AM.

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#9 Murph

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 2048 PM

I will admit I cried when I saw the wall fall.  I saw it close up, and it was evil.


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#10 DKTanker

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 2122 PM

I will admit I cried when I saw the wall fall.  I saw it close up, and it was evil.

I cry now with the knowledge that since the fall of the Berlin Wall our fellow countrymen, under the age of about 40 years, have not been properly schooled about the evils of Leftist oppression.


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#11 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 0229 AM

I was listening to an interview the other day, and there was an interview with an East German woman who said that at the time, it was their impression that the West Berliners were the ones that were walled in. Which is an interesting perspective that never occurred to me. :)


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#12 Ssnake

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 0247 AM

It ties in with the East German propaganda fiction of the wall as an "anti-fascist protection" construct. While it was made to keep the East Germans in, officially it was to keep nefarious Westerners from infiltrating the worker's paradise-in-the-making.


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#13 BansheeOne

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 0445 AM

Well, West Berlin was walled in. There was certainly an insular feeling in that part of the city.

 

Only in my new job, which includes selling ads in the official district brochures we publish for the twelve Berlin district administrations, I have realized how much the division is still present in the minds of old Berliners. There was a guy from a business in Mitte - literally the center of the city, the traffic, business, political and cultural hub - who said he definitely needed to advertize in Steglitz-Zehlendorf, a posh district in the former American sector, because to middle-aged and older folks there, he was still in the "East" where they won't usually go for purchases. Geographically, Mitte actually extends well West of the center line, but it was part of East Berlin, and the long-gone Wall still seems to be a barrier.

 

I've posted this before in the German immigration thread, you can even still see the division from the most prevalent non-German nationalities by sub-district. Most evident is of course that Turkish pluralities (red) are confined to the former western part, and concentrated in areas near the former Wall which were cheap during the "guest worker" period, while Vietnamese (brown) are clustered in the former east.

 

But the former Allied powers are also conspicious: Russians (light green) in the east, though also in the western borough of Charlottenburg (AKA Charlottograd) where refugees from the 1917 Revolution formed a parallel society as early as the 1920s; Americans (light blue) in the former US sector in the southwest, but also in the embassy district Unter den Linden (where they are followed by French and Italians) and north from that around Oranienburger Straße (where I suspect it's mostly American Jews in the area around the Grand Synagogue). The orange blotch is Brits around the Olympic Stadium, where the British HQ was located.

 

a-134077348.png


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#14 Ssnake

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 0606 AM

Well, West Berlin was walled in.

Yes, but not because the fascist hordes were about to overrun the Piefke Paradise.


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#15 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 0714 AM

Just as a matter of interest, were non German minorities much in evidence when the wall was up? I read somewhere that the Allied authorities discouraged immigration to the city, because they envisaged, probably rightly, it would rapidly run out of room.

Im just trying to figure out why, if this is a post wall demographic development, why are they only going into West Berlin? Because that is where the money is?

 

Ive just been reading Max Hertzbergs series of Stasi novels, and it was interesting to note in the second one there was a rubbish dump in East Germany where all the West Berlin Rubbish was taken. Id never stopped to consider this would be the case, but of course, it all had to go somewhere.


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#16 BansheeOne

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 0746 AM

There was a limitation of moving to East Berlin in the DDR, for and by East Germans, due to the pull effect of preferential supply as the showroom of socialism. The guest/contract workers were definitely there before the Wall fell; Turks, Italians, Yugoslavians, Spanish and Portuguese for the West, Vietnamese, Angolans and Mozambiqueans for the East. Immigration overall was certainly more regulated in the DDR, with contact between East Germans and socialist brothers discouraged by authorities from both sides despite the official celebration of internationalism.

 

Berlin as a whole has experienced a huge demographic turnover since re-unification. 2.9 million have moved there (of which 43 percent from abroad), while 2.7 million have moved away (36 percent of which abroad). Until 2003 the population actually shrunk, since then it's been growing again rapidly. Here's another map showing the relation between new arrivals (orange, up to 81 percent in parts of Mitte) and pre-unification Berliners (blue, up to 80 percent at the Heideberg in Spandau). The dotted line is the S-Bahn circle line surrounding downtown.

 

a-133693386.png

 

If you scroll fairly well down on the site all those maps are from, you'll also find graphs showing movement of individual nationalities to and from the city since 1991, and when the peak of arrivals was. For example the influx of Turks and Russians  has actually declined since the mid-90s, while it's still growing for Americans, British, French, Italians and other mediterranean nations, and for Poles and some other Eastern Europeans it's generally steady.


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#17 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 1004 AM

I think this was the worlds largest city on the outbreak of WW2 I read somewhere?

 

Thanks for that btw.


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#18 DKTanker

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 1150 AM

I think this was the worlds largest city on the outbreak of WW2 I read somewhere?

 

Thanks for that btw.

 

Continental Europe's largest city by population but far behind London, NYC, and Tokyo.  In the years prior to 1940 all four cities had incorporated outlying towns into their greater municipality.  Circa 1939 London was ~8.3M, NYC ~ 7.5M, Tokyo ~ 7.4M and Berlin being about 4.4M.  Incidently, I'm seeing that Moscow had a population of about 4.1M.


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#19 BansheeOne

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 1224 PM

Yeah, Berlin in its current shape dates from 1920, when a total of six other cities, 60 municipalities and 27 estates from the surrounding counties were incorporated. Which is why a lot of today's districts have their centennial anniversary next year. At that point, it created the third-largest city in the world by population after London and New York, and the second by area after Los Angeles. In fact it is expected that the pre-war population will only be reached again in the coming decade.

800px-Einwohnerentwicklung_von_Berlin_-_

Edited by BansheeOne, 10 November 2019 - 1227 PM.

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#20 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 10 November 2019 - 1317 PM

That may have been part of its salvation. I was reading the Martin Middlebrook books on the RAF's Berlin raids, and he said that the city was widely spaced, so it was not particularly easy to initiate a firestorm as occurred in Hamburg or Dresden. The widely spaced streets were also an accidental and wholly effective firebreak.

 

I really must visit it someday, ive read too much about it to not see it.


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