The Berlin Wall: The Cold War

1230 Words5 Pages
The Berlin Wall The Berlin Wall was a symbol of the Cold War and a picture of the separation of ideas and government from east and west. The Wall was put up to keep the East Germans from leaving the Soviet half of Berlin and West Germans from bringing their democratic ideas into East Berlin. Although the Soviets built the Wall during the Cold War in an attempt to defend their nation from western ideas invading Eastern Europe, it proved to be the downfall of the Soviet Union and socialism.
The Cold War was a competition between the United States and the Soviet Union that started after World War II. This war is called the Cold War because neither sides fired any weapons. There was a lot of tension between them because these were two of the world
…show more content…
Besides the five thousand East Germans that managed to cross the Berlin Wall, another five thousand were captured. Nearly two hundred West Germans were killed while attempting to cross the Wall. On October 25, 1961, United States’ and Soviet’s military tanks faced off at Checkpoint Charlie. Checkpoint Charlie was the most well-known place to cross over the barrier. At the checkpoint, E. Allan Lightner Jr., the senior United States diplomat in West Berlin, was stopped on his way to the opera house by East German guards and they demanded to see his passport. The United States claimed to have the right to move freely to the Soviet sector. General Clay ordered the next diplomat to enter East Berlin to have an escort of armed US army military police.
Clay then ordered M48 tanks to Checkpoint Charlie. Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet leader, sent T55 tanks to the checkpoint. For sixteen hours, they challenged each other. Eventually they came to an agreement. The Soviets removed their tanks and the United States reopened the Kremlin in Moscow, which was a fortified base in the middle of Moscow and is now the House of the president of Russia. The United States also removed their tanks from the Wall (“Berlin Crisis: the Standoff at Checkpoint Charlie,” Colitt). If either side would have fired their tanks, a war would have broken out across the world. World
…show more content…
Their oil prices dropped to low levels. The division between the upper class and the lower class began to widen and the younger generation of the Soviet Union did not want to embrace the socialist way of life (“Soviet Union”).
The Cold War was coming to an end and the Soviets were being overwhelmed by western democracy. The Soviet government tried to fix their issues, but eventually, they had to give up socialism and conform to the west. The Soviet leader announced that the citizens of Berlin were now free to cross over the Wall. On November 9, 1989 the East German government opened the barriers (“Berlin Wall,” Encyclopedia Britannica). East and West Germany were officially united in 1990 ("Berlin Wall Built").
“The Berlin Wall came to symbolize the Cold War’s division of East from West Germany and of East from West Europe.” The West saw the Wall as a clear image of socialist oppression. There are still a few socialist countries today, but it is not as popular as it was before the Berlin Wall. When it was taken down, socialism fell with

More about The Berlin Wall: The Cold War

Open Document