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The Berlin Wall


Do you know how the Cold War started? Well if you don’t know how it started, I didn’t either until I visited the city of Berlin in Germany. We hired a guide to share the important events with us. He was very helpful because he was an expert in German history. I also learned more about WWII and how the Allies (United States, France and England) had to partner with Russia to defeat Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany. Visiting the city of Berlin showed me how the WWII (1939-1945) and the Cold War (approx. 1947-1991) are linked together. It was fascinating to learn that we (The United States) had to partner up with England and surprisingly with Russia to defeat the Germans, who had the most powerful army at that time. This alliance with Russia did stop Hitler and end WWII but the alliance didn’t last for long. The short alliance with Russia ended when WWII ended. After WWII the allies agreed to split up Germany and the city of Berlin (because it was the capitol). When they split up Germany, it created different sides between Russia and the different allies (England, France and The US). The western (the West) or Allied side (the free side) and the eastern side (the East side which was Russia & Communist controlled) became very different, creating a big contrast between the two sides, and what I believe is the start of the Cold War.

The contrast of a free society on the western side and a controlled society on the eastern side attracted everyone from the east to go to the west. This exodus caused Joseph Stalin (Russian leader at that time) and the East Germans to put up the Berlin wall to prevent anymore East Germans from exiting. People still tried to escape across the border and risk their lives (140 were killed trying) because soldiers were instructed to shoot anyone trying to get over the wall.

In 1991, the Berlin wall finally came down with the fall of the USSR which also ended of the Cold War. Berlin was at the center of both WWII and the Cold War and it was fascinating for me to learn about how the splitting of Berlin at the end of WWII soon started the beginning of the Cold War.