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Construction of Berlin Wall

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Natalie Chico

on 20 May 2016

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Transcript of Construction of Berlin Wall

Construction of Berlin Wall
By: Natalie Chico

On August 13, 1961, the Communist government of the German Democratic Republic (GDR, or East Germany) began to build a barbed wire and concrete “Antifascistischer Schutzwall,” or “antifascist bulwark,” between East and West Berlin. The official purpose of this Berlin Wall was to keep Western “fascists” from entering East Germany and undermining the socialist state, but it primarily served the objective of stemming mass defections from East to West.
What is the Berlin Wall + Who Built It?:
Why did they built the Berlin Wall?:
The Berlin Wall. During the early years of the Cold War, West Berlin was a geographical loophole through which thousands of East Germans fled to the democratic West. In response, the Communist East German authorities built a wall that totally encircled West Berlin. It was thrown up overnight, on 13 August 1961.
Summary Of Berlin Wall:
The Berlin Wall stretched over a hundred miles. It ran not only through the center of Berlin, but also wrapped around West Berlin, entirely cutting West Berlin off from the rest of East Germany. The wall itself went through four major transformations during its 28-year history. The Berlin Wall started out as a barbed-wire fence with concrete posts, but just a few days after the first fence was placed, it was quickly replaced with a sturdier, more permanent structure made out of concrete blocks, topped with barbed wire.
Primary Sources-Berlin Speech, 1963:
How does this help me understand the topic?:
This helps me understand this topic because it tells how they were fighting against Berlin. While the wall is the most obvious and vivid demonstration of the failures of the Communist system, for all the world to see, they didn't take no satisfaction in it. It tells what is true about West Berlin. Kennedy points to the Berlin Wall as proof of the failure of Communism.

Implications of event:
The Berlin wall divided families who found themselves unable to visit each other. Many East Berliners were cut off from their jobs. West Berliners demonstrated against the wall and their mayor Willy Brandt led the criticism against the United States who they felt had failed to respond.
Interesting facts:
The Berlin Wall was a wall seperating the Eastern Side of Berlin from the Western Side.
The Berlin Wall is also referred to as the Iron Curtain.
The Berlin Wall was built to stop East Germans from defecting to the West. West Germans were able to visit East Germany by way of permit.
136 people died trying to cross the Berlin Wall during its existence. It is believed that approximately 5,000 people made the escape from East Germany to the West successfully by crossing the Berlin Wall.
(click link for timeline)-

Primary Source 2:
Title: The Cold War In Berlin
Source (Where did it come from):
How does this source help you understand the topic?:
Two years after the construction of the Berlin Wall, President Kennedy paid a historic visit to Berlin to challenge Soviet oppression & offer to hope to the people of the divided city.
It helps to tell us who divided who in two zones. The City of Berlin, located 200 miles inside East Germany, was also divided. Half of the city West Berlin was actually part of West Germany.
Full transcript