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  1. #1
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    20 years since the downfall of the Berlin wall today

    Hi

    Since I was in the middle of it it's still a hot topic for me. Maybe somebody is interested in some info on it.

    If you make a movie script out of the story it probably would be regarded as too ridiculously unlikely. The chronology of the event:

    It started with a press conference with one member of the Polit Bureau, Günther Schabowski. He was live on TV, when somebody handed him a slip of paper. He assumed this was to read out to the public and did so immediately, announcing that everybody could get a permission to leave through the border control points effective immediately.

    If he had read the memo he would have found that this was not to be released.

    The next unlikely thing was that a huge number of people realized only the opening the border control points part. They ignored the "get permission" part and went to the border an many points immediately after the announcement.

    But what happened then is the strangest part of it all. The local commanders of the army at the border did not know how to react to the challenge and tried to contact the top brass for orders. But there was a complete breakdown of the chain of command.

    Every high ranking Officer was out for the weekend and could not be contacted. So the local commanders were on their own that night. And each of them independently made the same decision. Confronted with an excited crowd they pulled back and opened the border.

    After that of cours there was no way back. Within months the communist regieme disintegrated completely.

    Well actually the more intelligent ones of them went into hiding and reorganized. But that is an entirely separate story.
    Last edited by Takeovers; 03-10-2009 at 05:18 PM.
    "don't attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by incompetence"

  2. #2
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    Where, pretty incredible, my old man has a large chunk of the wall on his desk at home.

  3. #3
    Pronce. PH said so AGAIN!
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    I was working in Dubai with a German boss at the time, he was a dour, unemotional sort but he completely lost it when the news came through and was confirmed.

    It was a great time to be alive.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Takeovers View Post
    Hi

    Since I was in the middle of it it's still a hot topic for me. Maybe somebody is interested in some info on it.

    If you make a movie script out of the story it probably would be regarded as too ridiculously unlikely. The chronology of the event:

    It started with a press conference with one member of the Polit Bureau, Günther Schabowski. He was live on TV, when somebody handed him a slip of paper. He assumed this was to read out to the public and did so immediately, announcing that everybody could get a permission to leave through the border control points effective immediately.

    If he had read the memo he would have found that this was not to be released.

    The next unlikely thing was that a huge number of people realized only the opening the border control points part. They ignored the "get permission" part and went to the border an many points immediately after the announcement.

    But what happened then is the strangest part of it all. The local commanders of the army at the border did not know how to react to the challenge and tried to contact the top brass for orders. But there was a complete breakdown of the chain of command.

    Every high ranking Officer was out for the weekend and could not be contacted. So the local commanders were on their own that night. And each of them independently made the same decision. Confronted with an excited crowd they pulled back and opened the border.

    After that of cours there was no way back. Within months the communist regieme disintegrated completely.

    Well actually the more intelligent ones of them went into hiding and reorganized. But that is an entirely separate story.
    thanks for that.
    it sounds like a thai-type scenario...............

    i am amazed that west germany survived having to afford social benefits and provide jobs for the many(?) who crossed the border with huge expectations.
    having said that, i have met a number of former east germans in thailand, listened to their stories, and felt sorry for them.
    many were hard-working, honest people who never had a chance.
    it is just sad that the taxpayers who built west germany after the war were dealt a double-whammy, and suddenly had to support so many more than what the system was designed for.
    is hard to believe that a simple wall could have caused so much shit, so much trauma and possibly just as much the second time around: when it was pulled down.
    brrrzzzzt, brrrzzzt!
    beep!. ting, ting
    redirecting, please be patient..........:

    hello, insect!
    brrrzzzt, brrrzzzt..................

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsicar
    thanks for that. it sounds like a thai-type scenario...............
    everything you post has some stupid comment like that one

    try to think a little, it was nothing like Thailand, it was the beginning of the breakdown of a communist regime. People were not allowed out of the country without permits, families were split etc etc

    if you had said Korea instead, there might have been more parallels
    I have reported your post

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    Quote Originally Posted by tsicar
    it is just sad that the taxpayers who built west germany after the war were dealt a double-whammy
    the US taxpayers, you mean?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingwilly View Post
    it was pretty incredible, my old man has a large chunk of the wall on his desk at home.
    Yes, if everbody who has a chunk of the 'Berlin wall' put them all together, the wall would reach to the moon and back three times.

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    well, it did but they knocked it down

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chairman Mao
    Yes, if everbody who has a chunk of the 'Berlin wall' put them all together, the wall would reach to the moon and back three times.
    Sherly it would just build the same size wall again.

  10. #10
    anonymous ant
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by tsicar
    thanks for that. it sounds like a thai-type scenario...............
    everything you post has some stupid comment like that one

    try to think a little, it was nothing like Thailand, it was the beginning of the breakdown of a communist regime. People were not allowed out of the country without permits, families were split etc etc

    if you had said Korea instead, there might have been more parallels
    thai -type scenario i commented on was the breakdown in command structure, and the eventual backing down of the military and police which was quoted in the op
    . nothing to do with the wall, pussy!

    and thanks for the history lesson:
    i think that any non-thai on this forum is fully aware of what it was all about,

  11. #11
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    yes, that is your problem, nothing to do with the wall

    20 years since the downfall of the Berlin wall today

  12. #12
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    Bugger, a lot of good people worked DAM hard on that wall and those vandels just went and knocked it over. They must have been pissed off... soooo pissed off.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chairman Mao View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by kingwilly View Post
    it was pretty incredible, my old man has a large chunk of the wall on his desk at home.
    Yes, if everbody who has a chunk of the 'Berlin wall' put them all together, the wall would reach to the moon and back three times.
    ....we were all at Woodstock as well.

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    I don't remember you there!

    well!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwi_Refugee View Post
    Bugger, a lot of good people worked DAM hard on that wall and those vandels just went and knocked it over. They must have been pissed off... soooo pissed off.
    Yes they were, but they couldn't do anything about it.



    Disagree on the "good people" part strongly.

  16. #16
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    So, what did Obama do to PO the Germans today?

  17. #17
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    20 years passes to quick nowadays

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by beachcarlo
    but there wasn't any berlin wall downfall, today, 20 years ago.
    Technically you are correct. The wall did not fall this day it only was opened and lost its function which led to the dismantling a short time later.

    In reality your statement is nonsense and I suspect you know that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Takeovers View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by beachcarlo
    but there wasn't any berlin wall downfall, today, 20 years ago.
    Technically you are correct. The wall did not fall this day it only was opened and lost its function which led to the dismantling a short time later.

    In reality your statement is nonsense and I suspect you know that.
    ???

    that press conference with Günther Schabowski you are talking about and that night that followed was on november 9, 1989.
    i was there, on the Brandenburger Tor. i will not forget that. one of the first few graffittis on the inside! of the wall was "California über alles" (a song by the punk group Dead Kennedys) another was "Freiheit für die vietnamesichen Zwangsarbeiter".


    one year later, on october 3, 1990, the German reunification was first time celebrated. and that is the German National Day since. Day of German Unity German: Tag der Deutschen Einheit.

  20. #20
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    I was in Berlin for new years eve 1989. It was chaotic and bloody dangerous. We went to the brandenburg gate at midnight because we had heard there would be a firework display.
    Hundreds od assorted Germans celebrating by firing off hand held rockets. No organised display, just mayem and happy inebreiated germans.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chairman Mao
    Yes, if everbody who has a chunk of the 'Berlin wall' put them all together, the wall would reach to the moon and back three times.
    ok, i'll post a piccie then.

    suppose that could be faked too.

    ok, believe, dont believe, you have a point I guess, no skin off my nose.

  22. #22
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    thought it was in November.

    But anyway....the only thing important about the Berlin wall is that it no longer exist.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by beachcarlo View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Takeovers View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by beachcarlo
    but there wasn't any berlin wall downfall, today, 20 years ago.
    Technically you are correct. The wall did not fall this day it only was opened and lost its function which led to the dismantling a short time later.

    In reality your statement is nonsense and I suspect you know that.
    ???

    that press conference with Günther Schabowski you are talking about and that night that followed was on november 9, 1989.
    i was there, on the Brandenburger Tor. i will not forget that. one of the first few graffittis on the inside! of the wall was "California über alles" (a song by the punk group Dead Kennedys) another was "Freiheit für die vietnamesichen Zwangsarbeiter".


    one year later, on october 3, 1990, the German reunification was first time celebrated. and that is the German National Day since. Day of German Unity German: Tag der Deutschen Einheit.



    I bow my head in shame. There must have been some lack of oxygen in my brain at that moment.

    Yes it is the aniversary of reunification.

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