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Photos showing the enthusiastic ambiance during the Fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989

Ian Harvey

One could compile volumes upon volumes of the predictions made by some of the most renowned political pundits of the cold war era, anticipating a never-ending power scuffle, that could only be settled by a MAD: mutually assured the destruction of the US and the Soviet Union by nukes. However, history works more within an intricate web of possibilities, than through one-dimensional predictions.

1989 was the year that brought a tectonic shift in the cold war geography when series of rather radical political upheavals took place in the so-called Eastern Bloc. These policy changes were quickly translated into the birth of a liberalization culture in the authoritarian and pro-soviet systems governing Hungary and Poland.

The black, white and red graffitti banner on the wall below the juggler depicts a pair of marching hammers, an allusion to the film Pink Floyd The Wall.. Photo Credit

The black, white and red graffiti banner on the wall below the juggler depicts a pair of marching hammers, an allusion to the film Pink Floyd The Wall Photo Credit

 

People atop the Berlin Wall near the Brandenburg Gate on 9 November 1989. . Photo Credit

People atop the Berlin Wall near the Brandenburg Gate on 9th November 1989. Photo Credit

 

November 1989 . Photo Credit

November 1989. Photo Credit

The liberalization inevitably brought about weeks of political and civil unrest in the Eastern Bloc, and by November 9th, 1989, the East German government was pressurized to announce that GDR citizens could freely visit West Berlin and West Germany.

After the announcement scores, East Germans climbed onto the Wall, crossed into West Germany on the other side, and an unpredictable celebratory atmosphere started engulfing the Wall. Over the next few weeks, more and more enthusiastic East and West Germans surrounded the wall and slowly started chipping it down brick by brick. The governments on both sides of the Wall later started using heavy industrial machinery to ‘tear down’ most of what was left.

Juggling on the Berlin Wall on 16. November 1989. Photo Credit

Juggling on the Berlin Wall on 16th November 1989 Photo Credit

 

 

Juggling on the Berlin Wall on 16. November 1989. Photo Credit

Juggling on the Berlin Wall on 16th November 1989. Photo Credit

 

East and West Germans converge at the newly created opening in the Berlin Wall after a crane removed a section of the structure beside the Brandenburg Gate. Photo Credit

East and West Germans converge at the newly created opening in the Berlin Wall after a crane removed a section of the structure beside the Brandenburg Gate  Photo Credit

 

Berlin, Checkpoint Charlie,. Photo Credit

Berlin, Checkpoint Charlie Photo Credit

It is widely believed that Wall was demolished in 1989. However, the fact is that the actual demolition of the Wall didn’t even commence until the mid-1990 and took another two years for the complete destruction to reach its end.

The demolition of the Wall was the first step towards the unification of the Germany that was split by the Cold War Soviet Union which resulted in the raising of wall slicing Germany into Eastern and Western halves; the reunification of Germany reached its logical conclusion on October 3rd, 1990.

Brandenburg Gate on December 1, 1989. The structure is already freely accessible from the East, however, the crossing to the Western side will not be officially open until December 22nd. . Photo Credit

Brandenburg Gate on December 1st, 1989. The structure is already freely accessible from the East. However, the crossing to the Western side was not officially opened until December 22nd Photo Credit

 

Berlin Wall on 16. November 1989. . Photo Credit

Berlin Wall on 16th November 1989 Photo Credit

 

A view of the East side of the Berlin Wall, taken in 1990 (after the border was opened).. Photo Credit

A view of the East side of the Berlin Wall, taken in 1990 (after the border was opened)  Photo Credit

 

Berlin, hole in wall at Reichstag. Photo Credit

Berlin, hole in the wall at Reichstag Photo Credit

 

Mauerspecht between Potsdamer Platz and Brandenburg Gate, Berlin November 1989. Photo Credit

Mauerspecht between Potsdamer Platz and Brandenburg Gate, Berlin, November 1989 Photo Credit

 

Fall of the Berlin Wall, November 1989. An Eastern guard speaks to a Westerner through a broken seam in the wall. Both were smiling, representing the jubilant spirit of the day. Photo Credit

Fall of the Berlin Wall, November 1989. An Eastern guard speaks to a Westerner through a broken seam in the wall. Both were smiling, representing the jubilant spirit of the day Photo Credit

By June 13th, 1990, East German military officials gave up to the subtle uprising and demand of the dismantling of the Wall and began chipping it down.

The dismantling of the Wall by the East Germans commenced from Bernauer Strasse going all the way to the Mitte District; from Mitte, the machinery went breaking the Wall through Prenzlauer Berg/ Gesundbrunnen and Helligensee going throughout the entire Berlin City in December 1990.

Read another story from us: The Number Stations– Real Spies Broadcasting During the Cold War

Many military units took part in the dismantling of the Berlin/Brandenburg border wall, and the job was not finished in its entirety until November 1991.