Berlin Wall Symbols

1559 Words 7 Pages
A fortified border which spans 155 kilometers separates east and west, communism and democracy, and repression from freedom (Walled In: Germany’s Inner Border). This barrier is known to many as The Berlin Wall. It became a significant symbol that represented all of those things depending on which side of the wall you were on. The events leading up to the building and destruction of the wall were very important to not only the Germans, but also to the whole world. The wall itself was a very complex security system and claimed many lives of those who tried to flee from East Berlin to West Berlin. When World War II was winding down, Russia claimed Berlin as a spoil of war. In order to share it with the rest of the Allies, Berlin was divided …show more content…
Many families were separated by the wall and desperately wanted to be reunified. With the reunification of Berlin looking nonexistent in the near future, people decided to try and escape the east and go to be with their families in the west. Many tried to go through the death strip and around 136 lives were lost from going over the wall alone. Countless others tried to go under or above the wall and every other way imaginable. Along with the failures, there were also successful escapes. Rudolf Muller was a man that was separated from his family by the wall. He and some other men began to dig a tunnel 8 feet underneath the wall. It was a lot of work and they had to remain silent and be careful that the tunnel didn’t cave in. After many months of hard work, they successfully dug the tunnel to the other side (Rise and Fall of the Berlin …show more content…
At this time, Gorbachev was contemplating reforms throughout all of Germany including reunifying Berlin. Some citizens were opposed to reunification because they didn’t want to have each other 's problems. East Germany had economical problems and the West wasn’t perfect either. Peaceful protests were gaining speed about opening the wall for good and the authorities were losing control rapidly. The start of the fall of the wall was when Czechoslovakia and Hungary opened their borders and the electric fences were dismantled between the borders. At the news of the borders starting to be opened, many East German vacationers rapidly fled the area (Rise and Fall of the Berlin Wall). Finally, on November 9th, 1989 the government issued a statement that said people were free to come and go as they pleased. The fall of the Berlin Wall symbolized the end of communism for all. Timothy Garton Ash was a journalist in West Berlin at the time and remembers the moment when the news made it to him that it was finally coming down after so many ears. He, along with many others, went to the wall to see it for themselves. Many climbed on top of the wall and chipped away at it to keep a piece as a souvenir and everyone celebrated for many days. Later, a formal destruction of the wall took place and pieces of the wall can still be seen in museums. The rest of the concrete was recycled and used to rebuild Berlin

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