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The bank that owns the leased land...

that's the point! it's their bloody land and they can do with it what ever they want to! does the term "property" mean anything to you? i used to think it's a pro capitalist blog.

You are now all witnesses to "social justice" Germany style.

This is just another in a long list of activities of Germany trying to deny its own history.

I hope the new history you are writing will make all Germans more proud than your current history.

well,
we won´t forget, but a lot of others will, many more will never know and due to lack of "graphic" exposure will hardly learn to care.

"First Death: The corpse of one of the first of over 1,000 victims of the wall is removed by East German authorities after it was left to decompose for days."

I'm sorry, but this exceeds the boundaries of legitimate spin by far; at best, it shows an utter lack of knowledge of historic fact.

The picture is of Peter Fechter who was shot by the East German border force on August 17th, 1962, while trying to escape across the wall at Zimmerstraße, close to Checkpoint Charlie (a friend of his made it). Still lying on the eastern side, he bled to death for about half an hour.

The East German allegedly didn't dare removing him for fear of being shot at from the West, where an angry mass of people demanded that he be saved from West Berlin police and U.S. soldiers. However, those also didn't have either authorization or inclination to venture onto East Berlin territory, though Fechter was thrown field dressings. He was finally given first aid after half an hour and transported to hospital a little later by the East Germans, but was beyond saving by then.

The incident caused a lot of hard feelings against the Eastern side - not that there weren't any before that - but also against the U.S. military for their perceived inactivity among West Berliners. However, as bad as it was, Fechter was definitely NOT "left to decompose for days".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Fechter

http://www.zeithistorische-forschungen.de/portal/alias__zeithistorische-forschungen/lang__de/tabID__40208419/DesktopDefault.aspx

Fechter has his own memorial at the site where he died.

Thanks for the correction BansheeOne.

It is truly amazing that the bank has such a tin ear relative to public relations.

@ BansheeOne

Correct AFAIK , but with a quite less emphasis on the US military being co-responsible.
They were not able to go onto East German territory without it being a provocation and the East Germans made no offer to allow it , nor did they try to rescue him themselves.
The West German onlookers could easily demand this of the US military, but it would have been a very bold and dangerous step.
Several East Germans offered to go to him, but were not allowed so by the East German guards, some of whom were in a great moral predicament themselves. OTOH on the Eastern side someone was in charge and he was responsible.

Er, Mr. No Comment: Do the words "lease" and "contract" mean anything to you?

BansheeOne.’s correction is a good example of how history gets rewritten.

While he corrected some factual errors about the time the body was moved, he added that some how the US had responsibility for this.

What really happened was a citizen of East Germany attempted to escape to West Berlin. East Germans acting on the orders of the East German government shot him. He never crossed into West Berlin and was in fact in East Berlin which was controlled by the East Germans and their Soviet allies. He was taken to an East Berlin hospital where he died.

Those are the facts. Any other spin added to this is just that spin. Of course, there will be those who believe the US was responbile they are the same people who want to transfer responsibility for their own lives to someone else or who believe the US is the greatest threat to peace.

How this get twisted years later to be some how the responsibility of the US is the equivalent of saying all rape victims are responsible for what happened to them because of something they did.

The people who wanted this land cleared are the same people who supported the initial shooting.


"The people who wanted this land cleared are the same people who supported the initial shooting."
Exactly. And I think Ray and David made that crystal clear in their coverage of the story: PDS/SED in the Berlin gov't, and funny old thing, the crosses at checkpoint Charlie disappear. That's why their ilk cannot be allowed into such positions of irresponsibility. Eben gerade deswegen.

Well it'll be interesting to see what becomes of the lot, whatever it is it must be happening very soon as the bank terminated the lease and cleared the land which doesn't make sense unless they had immediate plans for the property...

Yeah AH, I would suggest to the German school book writers to leave out the bit about erecting a wall to keep its citizens inside the great communist utopia and shooting people trying to flee its greatness, it might give the wrong impression.

Sorry guys, I really like this blog, but this story is just as looney as most "terrible crimes" the left likes to condemn. This is not an outrage, this is just business as usual. OK the left always whines, but isn't this what we at the other side criticize them for ?

From the bright side, this kind of whining and sloganesk behaviour may be what is needed to attract larger amounts of people to the right side. Hope it works...

@ Thomas:

If tearing down a monument like this is "business as usual", then we have a problem with "business as usual." Checkpoint Charlie should be a protected historic site with an appropriate monument - PERIOD.

no comment says "it's their bloody land and they can do with it what ever they want to! does the term "property" mean anything to you?"

There's a difference between "can" and "should", mr or ms no comment. Would you do everything that you are legally allowed to do?

"BansheeOne.’s correction is a good example of how history gets rewritten.

While he corrected some factual errors about the time the body was moved, he added that some how the US had responsibility for this."

Actually, no. Responsibility for the death of Peter Fechter was exclusively on the East German side full stop. They built the wall, they ordered fugitives shot, and they pulled the trigger. It doesn't even matter that when the case finally went on trial in 1997, the report of the medical examiner stated that Fechter never had a chance of surviving his injuries.

However, the anger of Berliners - whether justified or not - at the perceived inactivity of U.S. forces is also a historic fact. Any perceived rewriting of history is exclusively based on your expectation of an agenda behind stating those facts - whether justified or not.

Why do people even read or reply with those ashamed to give their name? It must suck to be you people who can't be bothered to even type in a alias. This isn't East Germany and the STASI will not by noting this in your files. One thing you can thank the " evil American Empire for." Ingore the poltury, please, most of it is just hateful flamebait.

For many of us this act is no surprize. All I can do is hope and pray the German people will come to their senses some day. The neo-communist want to wipe out all memory of their wretched acts of murder.

The managers of this bank are fools. I hope their stockholders reward them for being cowards and clowns.

Steven L. Hess

Fox Report around the world just reported on Check Point Charlie. They said that there was still hope that it would be stopped. I guess they do not know the latest.

Apparently letters to the members of the U.S. congress (my senators are Russ Feingold and Herbert Kohl) accomplished nothing. Did anyone get a response of any kind from these leaders of the free world?

"Any perceived rewriting of history is exclusively based on your expectation of an agenda behind stating those facts - whether justified or not."

Mind saying that a different way.

Thanks

That's too bad, instututional schitzophrenia. I visited East Berlin and travelled through Checkpoint Charlie to see the bust of Queen Nefertitti at the Ägyptisches Museum. It was funny and confusing to see "Die Mauer Muss Weg KPD/ML" written in red on the free side - but while it reflects on the confusion of the Left, I guess that doesn't reflect well on the seamless unity of passsing time that authorities want to project.

@mark, who fricking care in germany what american senators think about this ? lol......not even then if they have german names! its not your business americans,you have enough problems in your own country - spend your energy to solve them!

@Racker
You are mistaken. Berlin is our business. We protected her for 30 plus years. We were responsible for one part of her. Whether you like it or not, our President went there and said Ich bin ein Berliner and with that he made all of us Berliners. You may wish that we ""un"" mind our own business, well we are. Checkpoint Charlie was ours - Get used to it we take care of our own.

I appreciate the few Germans who still view us as a friend and ally. I really do. I'm just not sure there's a point anymore.

I won't be writing Berliners expressing my anger about the timing of this. I cannot pretend to be angry. It's German property and they can do with it as they wish. Trish writes that "we protected her for 30 plus years." That's old news now, and many of the younger Germans view us as the occupiers, not the Soviets. We should leave. We shouldn't make a big production of it or try to lay down a guilt trip. Germany's a powerful and wealthy nation. They are strong enough to handle their own defense.

Why no mention of all the Westerners shot while trying to escape to the East? I guess we can put their monuments next to the folks who died trying to get into Cuba and Vietnam.

"I met a beautiful American girl a week ago an exchange student from Atlanta. She has taught me a lot about the dark side. I am sorry I have bitched and assualted you bastards in the past."

This is too much! The entire world has been turned arse over teakettle! Uhh.. AH, something just occured to me... is her name Pamula, by chance? ;-)

"a beautiful American girl"

also ein Amihase für unseren Amihasser :-)

I don't forget neither the almost 200 victims of the 11M !!! Did Rodríguez Zapatero organized it in the same way as the SED gave the orders you are spoken about???
Thanks for your blog!!!

Ok, back to more serious issues...

"Checkpoint Charlie should be a protected historic site with an appropriate monument - PERIOD."

That´s the point indeed. I don´t fully agree: It is not necessary to declare the whole one and a half acres a protected historic site.

The "monument" Ms Hildebrandt erected was not at all a Checkpoint-Carlie-monument. It was a monument to the victims of the cold war. This is first and foremost a German issue, and there is no reason why such a monument should be located at CC, and not in the Bernauer Straße or near the Brandenburg Gate.

Another thing is a monument in grateful memory of the American service at CC. Such a monument should indeed be placed at CC.
But again, this doesn´t have to take up an acre. IMO, a nice sign ("This building stands on the former CC... Their service will always be remembered") would be perfectly acceptable. Or maybe something like the memorials to the dead German soldiers of WWI/II you see in so many German towns.

Anyway: It´s up to the Berlin city to decide how to do this, it´s not up to Ms Hildebrandt.

@ fuchur: This is absolutely correct.

I just can't understand why some people think that a memorial for the victims shot at the wall has to be situated at Checkpoint Charlie. Just because it's the only place you know in Berlin?

As it was said several times: The Americans were not responsible for the shootings, so why place a memorial next to their most famous checkpoint? It's far more reasonable to establish a memorial for the Cold War in this place (in which, AFAK, the USA were involved...). I just hope it will indeed be built.

REMINDER: There is a large memorial of the wall at Bernauer Strasse.

Greets

gio

[....]our President went there and said Ich bin ein Berliner and with that he made all of us Berliners[....]

After 9/11 Schröder said " Wir sind alle Amerikaner " . I think with that he made me an American.

"it's their bloody land and they can do with it what ever they want to! does the term "property" mean anything to you? i used to think it's a pro capitalist blog."

Isn't it more likely that the "capitalism" argument is conveniently (ab)used here to back a politically correct cause? As somebody who is heavily involved with the housing space industry, I am not under the impression that property rights are ranking very highly here.

On a different note, the fact that Christian crosses, of all things, symbolised the memory of the Mauer victims, made it probably even more offensive. The initiators of the memorial might have just gotten away with a nice, pompous, expensive, weltanschauungsneutral Stelenfeld that would have boosted the perpetrators' egos and made them feeling better about themselves. As proven by another "memorial" in Berlin.

Amihasser wrote: "To be honest: Deep in my heart I love America."

And who gives a flying fornication?

The initiators of the memorial might have just gotten away with a nice, pompous, expensive, weltanschauungsneutral Stelenfeld that would have boosted the perpetrators' egos and made them feeling better about themselves. As proven by another "memorial" in Berlin"

*lol* So you really think that the private installation that has now been removed in no way boosted Mrs Hildebrandt's ego? Not even after she began with the illegal occupation of the bank's property?

And maybe, after all of you have finished expressing your outrage, you can visit the official, i.e. democratically legitimized, monument at the Bernauer Straße (http://www.berliner-mauer-dokumentationszentrum.de/).

Bye,
Illic

Oh, very probably it boosted Mrs H's ego. But that was not my point and is totally immaterial. My point was that it does certainly NOT boost the ego of an entire population of communist perpetrators and their willing followers.

"Democratically legitimised outrage"... I LOVE that! It's so utterly ... GERMAN!

@ Editrix: ""Democratically legitimised outrage""? Is this your invention? Or did you just misread Illic? Then try it again!

How long and what will it take to make Germans realize that their country Germany is almost unnoticingly slipping behind the red wall of Socialism/Communism?

Think of all the history since the end of WW II. and how such events could have never happened between 1945 to 1960. The German public and Greman politicians in West Germany would have been outraged:

1. Recognition of the Oder-Neisse-Line as firm "border" by Brandt. When The Sowjet Regime in Berlin approved it right after the war, all of West Germany was up in arms about it.

2. Full diplomatic recognition of the criminal German-Sowjet government in Middle Germany. Again by the FRG government at Berlin.

3. Renaming of the historic "Middle Germany" as "East Germany". Thereby moving this title 500 km to the West. Again, by the FRG government at Berlin.

4. Recognition of the unlawful annexation by Russia and Poland of all of the preceding East Germany (1/4 of the whole nation) without a plebiscite among the native, expelled German population. Again, by the FRG government at Berlin.

5. Losening the historic ties of friendship with America. Again, by the FRG government at Berlin.

6. Removal of all vestiges of the Cold War which blame Communism for the origin of the conflict.

I repeat, none of the above could have happened without the "red revolution" in Germany during the 60ies.

What's on for #7 and will the Germans "swallow" it again?

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Allright,

seems as if Mr Haase wants to win the "most-revisionist" title.

What about the Romans reclaiming Paris or the English reclaiming New York? All this loss would never have happened if the respective kings wouldn't have been that awfully weak and cowardly.

Think about history and come back!

gio

@trish
"Checkpoint Charlie was ours - Get used to it we take care of our own"
You just said it right, it "WAS" your business many years ago during occupation and the cold war, but since germany is a sovereign country again it is not your business anymore!
And for the the saying of your president "Ich bin ein Berliner" he didnt mean that he or all americans are "Berliner" now.......he just meant the people in Berlin should be proud again to say "Ich bin ein Berliner"......

@ Niko:

"...only when such a memorial site is politically correct it will receive the blessing, and therefore financial support by elected officials."

Well, as far as I remember, the thing with elected governments is, that it can make its own decisions based on the votum of the people.

"...in the opinion of an increasing number of Germans East and West, the Mauertoten were not a feature of the GDR, but a minor bug."

Could you please tell me, how you know, that there is an "increasing number of Germans" thinking like that? I think that's a myth.

I'm also not comfortable with some oldschool wing of the PDS, which is still defending the crimes that were made by GDR officials in the name of socialism. But as far as I can see, most of the members of the party (at least the actual leaders ) have distanced themselves from these crimes. I don't write this because I want to defend the PDS, but because I think that, unlike it is suggested in some posts around here, the PDS is not a major threat to German democracy.

gio

One thing really stands out when you follow this thread. The “private property” ploy has been demolished repeatedly, but keeps coming back like the proverbial cat. Libertarians the world over must be smiling, because this monument issue has made more converts to laissez faire capitalism then the collapse of the Soviet Union. We’re talking people who once upon a time would have flown into a rage if anyone suggested legal cutting of timber on private property. We’re talking people who would have shouted anathemas from the moral high ground at the notion that legal dumping of pollutants on private property was anyone’s “right.” We’re talking people whose virtuous indignation meter would have gone off the charts if anyone had suggested that legal arms sales to the likes of Saddam Hussein or Slobodan Milosevic were OK and a mere matter of private property. Take heart, Krups, Rockefellers, and nascent robber barons the world over! The scales have fallen from their eyes. The former Communist apparatchiks in the PDS have thrown out all their dusty Marxist tomes, and are now touting the virtues of private property! Rejoice, bourgeois exploiters and enemies of the people the world over! You were right all along. How silly of Medienkritik to dare to question the crude political pressure that makes a mockery of the surreal claim that this was a "private business deal." How ridiculous to suggest that it's wrong to sweep a thousand murders under the rug. How naive to consider such trivia as whether a "legal, private deal," might actually be right or wrong. Screw ethics! Screw morality! Screw history! Screw social responsibility! Private property rules!!

Not only is the PDS a threat to Germany's constitution and freedom. There are also noticable percentages of extremist SPD party members to be considered, which would think of nothing but to march along with the PDS toward the same "red sunrise."

If anyone asks you why Germany and the U.S. are no longer getting along, this is one of the most salient reasons which points toward a very dim future for this erstwhile friendship.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida

@gio: I wouldn't necessarily call Mr Haase "revisionist." Although his comments might sound to some as though they came from the platform of the Bundesverband der Vertriebene, I think the real point to be made from his comments is that in the deepest darkest days of the Cold War, the Americans were actually looking out for German interests better than the Germans were -- owing to the latter's fascination with Ostpolitik and efforts to "normalize" relations with those who were actually committed to their destruction.
@Haase: I remember back in my school days, all the maps of Eastern Europe used in the US had comments like "the US gov't does not recognize the annexation of ...." or "temporarily under Polish administration" etc. Sort of telling, isn't it?

@gio

You wrote: "Allright,

seems as if Mr Haase wants to win the "most-revisionist" title.

What about the Romans reclaiming Paris or the English reclaiming New York? All this loss would never have happened if the respective kings wouldn't have been that awfully weak and cowardly.

Think about history and come back!

gio"

Sorry you went off the subject which was my concern that a slow letist takeover of Germany might be on the horizon. This opinion was further undergirded by my examples of a mix of internationally illegal steps taken by German governments which are clearly in violation of internationally recognized Human Rights.

If correcting a terrible wrong in history is now being called "revisionist" by the "Reds" then I, as an American, am all for it! Just as we have been "revisionist' by chasing the Nazis and Japanese out of other people's countries while continueing the same with Communists from South Korea to East Germany.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida

@Joe

You are now all witnesses to "social justice" Germany style

What sort of commeent should that be.

This place is a private property of a bank.

Private property is protected by the constetution.
People have to follow the law. What sort of state system do you prefer. sozialism where private property does not exist and all the property is controled by the government .
this bank can do what ever the mamager of this bank want to do with this expensive place in Berlin.
It is their right to do so and i don´t want to live in a country where it is different.
Good luck in Cuba or North Korea.


"This is just another in a long list of activities of Germany trying to deny its own history"

Please give me examples where germany denies its history after the second world war. i am looking forward. As several times written here there is a memorial to this topic as there are memorials to all the other topics. berlin is full of these things just open your eyes and make a visite.
Your comment is not only wrong it is just an cheap insult from someone that hopefully has no idea what he is talking about. You don´t want to listen to facts you just have your oppinion but that is your right because you don´t live in Cuba or North Korea i belive and now we are at the beginning.

Helian, comment 47: "One thing really stands out when you follow this thread. The “private property” ploy has been demolished repeatedly, but keeps coming back like the proverbial cat."

Anonymous, comment 51: "This place is a private property of a bank. Private property is protected by the constetution., usw., usw., usw."

See what I mean?

gio

If Peter Haase is a revisionist then the SPD was revisionst too back in the 50s when they used this map for their election campaign:

http://www.hdg.de/lemo/objekte/pict/JahreDesAufbausInOstUndWest_plakatSPDVorwaerts/index.jpg

@Tanja: Thanks for that, that was great. Funny how the SPD was relatively quick to move from "Vorwärts" to "Rückwärts" as far as Großdeutschland was concerned, no pun intended.

"I met a beautiful American girl a week ago an exchange student from Atlanta. She has taught me a lot about the dark side. I am sorry I have bitched and assualted you bastards in the past."

Did someone just hijack Amihasser's nom de guerre?

@ Posted by: | July 6, 2005 06:40 PM

hey ! " no-name" , post a name, dammit ! Otherwise I say to everyone : " don´t respond to no-namers".
Posts get mixed up and it can be a waste of time to answer.

Even Amihasser has a name.

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