Photographer's Note

This tourist snapshot has a background of at 28 least years of German and European History.
The Berlin Wall divided East and West Berlin, East and West Germany, East and West Europe from August 13, 1961 to November 9, 1989. The fall of the Wall led to German reunification on October 3, 1990, and the end of the Cold War.
November 9, 1989, the Schicksalstag, is the day when East Germany authorities opened the checkpoints in the Berlin Wall, allowing its citizens to freely travel to the western side. People started demolishing the Wall, but most of it remained for several months.
By April 1990 (this photo date) people had demolished large parts of the Wall, often in order to chip off pieces of it as souvenirs. The big holes, like here, were guarded by East German border guards, forcing people to cross at the official checkpoints (such as the Allied Checkpoint Charlie, the only one for non-Germans).
Of course, by then the guards were in a very relaxed mood, despite technically the border still existed (until the reunification) and we were still "enemies" on each side. A result of not allowing people through the holes was to force foreigners to pay the visa to enter East Berlin, as I had to do!
See also the Iron Curtain (inter-German border) in the countryside.
Today, November 9, I greet the German TE members.
Heute, den 9. November, grüße ich die deutschen Mitglieder von TrekEarth.
[I don't remember the location of this picture, but I guess it was somewhere between Brandenburg Gate and Checkpoint Charlie. I'd like that some of the guards or tourists in this shot might see it and tell us. Scanned from paper print.]
For an interesting text, read the Wikipedia article: Berlin Wall (also in dozens of other languages; click at left side of the article).

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Additional Photos by Francisco Santos (xuaxo) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4896 W: 319 N: 4862] (6854)
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