A Lady's Ruminations

"Jane was firm where she felt herself to be right." -Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice


Wednesday, July 06, 2005

"Memorial to East German Victims Torn Down"

From Yahoo:

Locals and tourists watched in dismay Tuesday as workers pulled up wooden crosses and ripped out a reconstructed section of the Berlin Wall, fulfilling a court order to dismantle a private memorial to people killed at the East German border.
A museum dedicated to Checkpoint Charlie is nearby.

Museum owners built the memorial in October, using original sections to reconstruct a stretch of wall next to 1,065 crosses — their tally of those who died at communist East Germany's fortified border.

They had leased the land from the Hamm-based BAG Bank, which sued to have it vacated after the lease expired. The museum failed to come up with the necessary $43 million to purchase the plot.

They would have to pay $43 million to honor those murdered by the Commies? What is wrong with the Bank that owned the land? They could not just leave the memorial up?

The checkpoint was established by the U.S. Army in 1961 after East Germany closed its border and later that year was the scene of a dramatic face-off between U.S. and Soviet tanks.

It became the main crossing where foreign tourists, diplomats and military personnel entered and left the Soviet sector of the divided city, with multilingual signs warning: "You are leaving the American sector."

The memorial lay in what is now a high-rent shopping district. The adjacent Checkpoint Charlie museum — established in 1963 on the West German side of the border and Berlin's second-busiest with 700,000 visitors last year — is not in jeopardy.
Then, there the other side:
Hildebrandt's memorial had drawn a mixed response in Berlin. The wall remnants used did not originally stand at the site, and the monument did not recreate how Checkpoint Charlie looked before the wall fell in 1989.