Monday, November 18, 2019

The Berlin Wall Fell Over a Weekend, 30 Years Later We're Still Trying to Cope with the Consequences

The Berlin Wall Fell Over a Weekend, 30 Years Later We're Still Trying to Cope with the Consequences

Mike Pompeo was in Germany serving with American forces there when the Berlin Wall came down. It seems he has no illusions about the Soviet threat back then, or the threat posed by Vladimir Putin today. This is what he had to say in a speech in Berlin on Friday
Yet Pompeo's boss, on whose behalf he lies and deceives whenever he deems it necessary, is talking about going to Moscow to hang out with Putin on "Victory Day" next May.

"Today, Russia – led by a former KGB officer stationed in Dresden ‒ invades its neighbors and slays political opponents.  It suppresses the independence of the Orthodox Church in Ukraine.  Russian authorities, even as we speak, use police raids and torture against Crimean Tatars and Ukrainians who are working in opposition to Russian aggression.  In Chechnya, anyone considered 'undesirable' by the authorities simply disappears."

There is something wrong with this picture.

My comments on MSNBC on Saturday:

At The Daily Beast we ran several stories about the Fall of the Wall which I invite you to read, watch, and share.

Among them is an essay that I wrote this week, but should have written 30 years ago: 


The Night the Cold-War World Turned Upside Down


This vivid context by Andrew Nagorski:


The Berlin Wall and the Collapse of Communism in Five Acts


And this provocative 2014 essay about the impact of November 1989 on one Vladimir Putin: 


How the Fall of the Berlin Wall Radicalized Putin

In 1989, as East Germany collapsed around him, a KGB spy in Dresden named Vladimir Putin came to some hard conclusions that would later inform his bellicose geopolitics.


We also ran several great photographs by the redoubtable Turnley twins:


The Fall of The Wall as Captured by Peter and David Turnley


And we embedded this slide show that has even more of their extraordinary pictures:

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