Thursday, June 13, 2013

Berlin. 50 years ago this month JFK made his famous speech.

Berlin and 50th anniversary of JFK speech.

I went to Berlin last weekend with Jolanda. We spend 2 nights there after a 3 and a half bus ride from Hamburg. While we were there we saw many famous places. This month (and specifically on the 26th) is the 50th anniversary of JFK's famous speech "Ich bin ein Berliner"  where he showed his support for  West Germany 22 months after the soviet influenced East Germany erected a wall separating west Berlin from East berlin. In his speech he said the famous words "Ich bin ein Berliner" although people from berlin do not really refer to themselves as "Berliners" because a berliner is basically a jelly filled doughnut.. hah. Any way his words had an impact and it remains in our minds today as in a week, the current President of the United States, Obama has a trip planned and will have talks with the current Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel. Although with recent revelations of the secret PRISM surveillance program might thwart some of these talks because the EU does not really approve of the U.S. "spying" on it's citizens.

Anyway the wall remained standing for many years later and the Brandenburg Gate (I took a picture of it as shown below) symbolized the separation of the City and the whole country. Again on June 12 (yesterday 26 years to the date) in 1987 the then President Ronald Reagan again called upon the leader of the then Soviet Union Mikhail Gorbachev (in front of the Brandenburg Gate, again pictured below when i went last weekend) to "Tear down this wall!".

Two years after Reagan's speech in 1989 East Berliners were allowed to cross into West Berlin and both Celebrated on top of the wall. The wall was then destroyed and this gave way to German reunification which completed in October 3 1990.

To this day the Brandenburg gate (built in the late 1800s) still stands and became a symbol of German division and reunification. And now the German people are fully united and could be seen as carrying the rest of Europe on it's shoulders as it bails out many EU states but that is up for debate. But the German people hav succeeded in successfully restoring a good economy and acceptance. Hopefully from here on out everything will only get better. But the division will always remain in our minds. Below is also a picture of graffiti from 1992 indicating the continued feeling of divisions then but when I was there everything seemed fluent.

To Germany and the German People!.

First here is a picture of my favorite building in Berlin "The Berliner Dom"

    Berliner Dom
Brandenburg Gate



Now it is all water under the bridge ;)


1 comment:

  1. The doughnut story is a misconception: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ich_bin_ein_Berliner#Jelly_doughnut_misconception

    Other than that I really enjoy your blog ;).

    ReplyDelete