the berlin wall

Topics: Soviet Union, Cold War, Eastern Bloc Pages: 4 (1577 words) Published: November 3, 2013
 National History Day on the rise and fall of the Berlin Wall and the decline of the Soviet Union. The Berlin Wall was put up August 13, 1961. The reason why it was put up was because Cold War tensions over Berlin were running high again. For East Germans dissatisfied with life under the communist system, West Berlin was a gateway to the democratic West. Between 1949 and 1961, some 2.5 million East Germans fled from East to West Germany, most via West Berlin. By August 1961, an average of 2,000 East Germans were crossing into the West every day. Many of the refugees were skilled laborers, professionals, and intellectuals, and their loss was having a devastating effect on the East German economy. To halt the exodus to the West, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev recommended to East Germany that it close off access between East and West Berlin. With this idea the Berlin Wall was built it had effected so many people because some people’s parents were over there. Here are some of the stories of the wall: A truck carrying a group of East Berliners simply crashed through the wall. The driver, though shot, kept going. He later died from his wounds. One young woman in West Berlin made a U.S. Army uniform. She got buttons and badges from officers by saying they were for a play. She borrowed an American car, drove over to East Berlin and brought back two friends. A team of young mechanics engineered a chain of folding ladders guided by pulleys and ropes. They scaled the electrified wall without touching it.Two men used an archery bow to shoot a cable over the wall and onto a roof on the Western side. They attached pulleys to the cable and sailed across the wall - 65 feet - in 30 seconds. At a blind spot between two checkpoints, people could swim across a small river and climb to freedom. British soldiers hung a rope ladder at the spot to help escapees. More than 100 people escaped through a sewer that the East German authorities had forgotten about. The East Berliners who...
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