Sunday, November 9, 2014

And the Wall Came Tumbling Down

For those of you who are too young to remember and those of you who may have forgotten, this is the introductory paragraph of Wikipedia's article on the Berlin Wall.
"The Berlin Wall was a barrier that existed between 1961 and 1989 inclusively, constructed by the German Democratic Republic (GDR, East Germany) starting on 13 August 1961, that completely cut off  West Berlin from surrounding East Germany and from East Berlin until it was opened in 1989. The barrier included guard towers placed along large concrete walls, which circumscribed a wide area (later known as the "death strip") that contained anti-vehicle trenches, "fakir beds" and other defenses. The Eastern Bloc claimed that the wall was erected to protect its population from fascist elements conspiring to prevent the "will of the people" in building a socialist state in East Germany. In practice, the Wall served to prevent the massive emigration and defection that marked East Germany and the communist Eastern Bloc during the post-World War II period."
The date on which the Berlin Wall fell is considered to have been November 9, 1989.

It's only 25 years ago, but it feels like more than a lifetime has passed. I remember the day well. After having lived in the Diaspora in Central Sweden for a few horrible years, I had recently returned down south, to my native town again, and followed the news closely and was filled with great joy at what was transpiring.

So much changed after the fall of the Wall, the cold war ended and the world felt like a better and safer place with great hopes for the future. For a while.

Now tension seems to be building up again, aided by the Russian president Vladimir "Little Father" Putin's desire to restore Russia to it's former glory as a world power.

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