September 13, 2009 |
Twenty years ago, on Sept. 11, 1989, the plug was pulled on the bathtub of Soviet empire. At the stroke of midnight, tiny communist Hungary threw open the gates to freedom and the West. Tens of thousands of people surged across the suddenly unguarded border. Scenes of jubilation, of families reunited after decades of captivity in Eastern Europe, flashed around the world. Newsweek's cover dubbed it the "Great Escape." From one day to the next, Americans awoke to a startling new reality.
August 24, 2009 |
The mayor of Berlin today gave Usain Bolt a piece of political history for the Jamaican sprinter's contribution to sports history at the 12th World Track and Field Championships. It is a chunk of the Berlin Wall decorated with Bolt's image, appropriate for an athlete whose world records in the 100 and 200 meters shattered the apparent limits of human performance in this 20th year since the fall of an enormous barrier to human interaction. This token of the city's esteem for Bolt is 12 feet tall and 4 feet wide and weighs 1.7 tons.
August 12, 2009 |
In what government and arts officials are calling the most ambitious commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall outside of Germany, a symbolic re-creation of the wall that once separated East and West Berlin will be erected across Wilshire Boulevard in November. The Wall Project, painted by professional and amateur artists, will close Sunday afternoon traffic on one of the city's busiest thoroughfares for three hours on Nov. 8 beginning at 3 p.m. The project involves the Culver City's Wende Museum and Archive of the Cold War, the city of Los Angeles, the German Consulate General in Los Angeles and other partners, and will be officially announced Thursday.
July 12, 2009 |
1 Germany Stop a random handful of Berliners on the street and ask where you might still find a stretch of the Berlin Wall in this, the 20th year since communism collapsed here. A surprising number will not have a clue. Although much of the wall was razed soon after Nov. 9, 1989, sections that weren't given to museums, sold as souvenirs or ground into underlay for autobahns can be seen -- if you know where to go.
May 17, 2009 |
For almost 30 years, desperate East Germans tried to drive through it, tunnel under it and fly over it. More than 136 died in the attempt. Less than two years after the Berlin Wall's construction in the early '60s, it inspired President Kennedy's "Ich bin ein Berliner" speech, galvanizing international attention. In 1987, President Reagan stood in front of the Brandenburg Gate and demanded, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" which ran through the heart of Berlin.
May 3, 2009 |
Through the failures of the Weimar Republic and the horrors of the Third Reich, in a Germany divided and a Germany reunited, there was always one thing Berliners could count on: their beloved KaDeWe. More than just a department store, it's an inescapable fact of life in this European capital.
January 29, 2009 |
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art turns the clock back to before the Berlin Wall came down in its new film series "Torn Curtain: The Two Germanys on Film," which begins Friday and runs through Feb. 21. The 16 featured films made from the end of World War II and the collapse of the wall shine a spotlight on what life and filmmaking was like in that era in West and East Germany.
July 26, 2008 |
SEN. BARACK OBAMA said in an interview the day after his Berlin speech that it "allowed me to send a message to the American people that the judgments I have made and the judgments I will make are ones that are going to result in them being safer." If that is what the senator thought he was doing, he still has a lot to learn about both foreign policy and the views of the American people.
July 20, 2008 |
BARACK OBAMA is planning a visit to the German capital this month -- reportedly to deliver a major foreign-policy speech at Pariser Platz, the stately, almost perfectly proportioned plaza that has emerged since the fall of the Berlin Wall as the heart of reunified Berlin. Forty-five years after John F.