The Berlin Wall was a guarded concrete barrier that physically and ideologically divided Berlin from 1961 to 1989. Its demolition officially began on 13 June 1990 and was completed in 1992, the barrier included guard towers placed along large concrete walls, which circumscribed a wide area that contained anti-vehicle trenches, fakir beds and other defenses. The Eastern Bloc claimed that the Wall was erected to protect its population from fascist elements conspiring to prevent the will of the people in building a socialist state in East Germany. In practice, the Wall served to prevent the massive emigration and defection that had marked East Germany, the West Berlin city government sometimes referred to it as the Wall of Shame—a term coined by mayor Willy Brandt—while condemning the Walls restriction on freedom of movement. Between 1961 and 1989, the Wall prevented almost all such emigration, during this period, around 5,000 people attempted to escape over the Wall, with an estimated death toll ranging from 136 to more than 200 in and around Berlin.
After several weeks of civil unrest, the East German government announced on 9 November 1989 that all GDR citizens could visit West Germany, crowds of East Germans crossed and climbed onto the Wall, joined by West Germans on the other side in a celebratory atmosphere. Over the next few weeks, euphoric people and souvenir hunters chipped away parts of the Wall, contrary to popular belief the Walls actual demolition did not begin until the summer of 1990 and was not completed until 1992. The fall of the Berlin Wall paved the way for German reunification, the capital of Berlin, as the seat of the Allied Control Council, was similarly subdivided into four sectors despite the citys location, which was fully within the Soviet zone. Within two years, political divisions increased between the Soviets and the occupying powers. Property and industry was nationalized in the East German zone, if statements or decisions deviated from the described line and punishment would ensue, such as imprisonment and even death.
Indoctrination of Marxism-Leninism became a part of school curricula, sending professors. The East Germans created a political police apparatus that kept the population under close surveillance. In 1948, following disagreements regarding reconstruction and a new German currency, Stalin instituted the Berlin Blockade, preventing food and supplies from arriving in West Berlin. The United States, France, Australia, New Zealand and several countries began a massive airlift, supplying West Berlin with food. The Soviets mounted a public campaign against the Western policy change. Communists attempted to disrupt the elections of 1948, preceding large losses therein, in May 1949, Stalin lifted the blockade, permitting the resumption of Western shipments to Berlin. The German Democratic Republic was declared on 7 October 1949, by a secret treaty, the Soviet Ministry of Foreign Affairs accorded the East German state administrative authority, but not autonomy. The Soviets permeated East German administrative and secret police structures and had full control, East Germany differed from West Germany, which developed into a Western capitalist country with a social market economy and a democratic parliamentary government
National Front (East Germany)
The NF was controlled by the Socialist Unity Party of Germany and was formed to stand in elections to the East German parliament, the Volkskammer. The Front itself was founded on March 30,1950 and it operated through the issuing of a generally consistent proportion of seats submitted in the form of a single list of candidates during each election to the Peoples Chamber. Seats were awarded on the basis of a set rather than vote totals. As voters only had the option of approving or rejecting the list in far-from-secret conditions, although nominally a broad-based coalition of parties, in practice the SED was the only one with any real power. By ensuring that Communists dominated the lists, the SED essentially predetermined the composition of the Peoples Chamber. In 1950-1951, the rejection of the validity of the list by some German politicians resulted in some of them being imprisoned for rejecting the electoral law of the German Democratic Republic. Although the SED had already become a full-fledged Stalinist party of the new type by the formation of the GDR, the other parties did not completely bend to the SEDs will for a time.
By the mid-1950s, the more members of the constituent parties had been pushed out. By this time, the SED itself had purged its few independent-minded members as well, the Front now took on a character similar to other groupings in the Eastern Bloc. For the next three decades, the parties in the Front had to accept the SEDs leading role as a condition of their continued existence. On December 1,1989, the Front was effectively rendered impotent when the Volkskammer deleted the provision of the Constitution of East Germany that gave the SED a monopoly of power. Four days later, the Christian Democratic Union and Liberal Democratic Party, having thrown out their pro-Communist leaderships, on December 16 the SED, having transformed itself into a democratic socialist party, reformed itself into the Party of Democratic Socialism. On February 20,1990, an amendment to the constitution removed mention of the Front, Prof. Erich Correns Prof. Lothar Kolditz Politics of East Germany List of Volkskammer members United Front for a currently running system similar to the National Front of the DDR
Socialist Unity Party of Germany
The partys dominant figure from 1950 to 1971, and effective leader of East Germany, was Walter Ulbricht. In 1953, an uprising against the Party was met with violent suppression by the Ministry of State Security and the Soviet Army. In 1971, Ulbricht was succeeded by Erich Honecker who presided over a period in the development of the GDR until he was forced to step down during the 1989 revolution. The partys last leader, Egon Krenz, was unsuccessful in his attempt to retain the SEDs hold on political governance of the GDR and was imprisoned after German reunification, the SEDs long-suppressed reform wing took over the party in the fall of 1989. In hopes of changing its image, on 16 December it renamed itself the Party of Democratic Socialism, abandoning Marxism–Leninism and it received 16. 4% of the vote in the 1990 parliamentary elections. In 2007, the PDS merged with Labour and Social Justice into The Left, official East German and Soviet histories portrayed this merger as a voluntary pooling of efforts by the socialist parties.
However, there is evidence that the merger was more troubled than commonly portrayed. By all accounts, the Soviet occupation authorities applied pressure on the SPDs eastern branch to merge with the KPD. The newly merged party, with the help of the Soviet authorities, these elections were held under less-than-secret conditions, thus setting the tone for the next four decades. A truer picture of the SEDs support came with the elections in Berlin. In that contest, the SED received less than half the votes of the SPD, the bulk of the Berlin SPD remained aloof from the merger, even though Berlin was deep inside the Soviet zone. The Soviet Military Administration in Germany directly governed the areas of Germany following World War II. Also reported was a deal of difficulty in convincing the masses that the SED was a German political party. Soviet intelligence claimed to have a list of names of an SPD group within the SED that was covertly forging links with the SPD in the West, a problem for the Soviets that they identified with the early SED was its potential to develop into a nationalist party.
At large party meetings, members applauded speakers who talked of nationalism much more than when they spoke of solving social problems, although it was nominally a merger of equals, from the beginning the SED was dominated by Communists. By the late 1940s, the SED began to purge most recalcitrant Social Democrats from its ranks, by the time of East Germanys formal establishment in 1949, the SED was a full-fledged Communist party—essentially the KPD under a new name. It began to develop along lines similar to other Communist parties in the Soviet bloc, over the years, the SED gained a reputation as one of the most hardline parties in the Soviet bloc. When Mikhail Gorbachev initiated reforms in the Soviet Union in the 1980s, the party organisation was based on, and co-located with, the institutions of the German Democratic Republic
Yellow is the color between green and orange on the spectrum of visible light. It is evoked by light with a predominant wavelength of roughly 570–590 nm, in traditional color theory, used in painting, and in the subtractive color system, used in color printing, yellow is a primary color. In the RGB color model, used to create colors on television and computer screens, yellow is made by combining red, the word yellow comes from the Old English geolu, meaning yellow, derived from the Proto-Germanic word gelwaz yellow. It has the same Indo-European base, gʰel-, as the gold and yell. In Iran it has connotations of pallor/sickness, but wisdom and it plays an important role in Asian culture, particularly in China, where it is seen as the color of happiness, wisdom and culture. The word yellow comes from the Old English geolu, meaning yellow, yellowish and it has the same Indo-European base, gʰel-, as the words gold and yell, gʰel- means both bright and gleaming, and to cry out. The English term is related to other Germanic words for yellow, namely Scots yella, East Frisian jeel, West Frisian giel, Dutch geel, German gelb, and Swedish and Norwegian gul.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the oldest known use of word in English is from The Epinal Glossary in 700. Yellow, in the form of yellow pigment made from clay, was one of the first colors used in prehistoric cave art. The cave of Lascaux has an image of a horse colored with yellow estimated to be 17,300 years old, in Ancient Egypt, yellow was associated with gold, which was considered to be imperishable and indestructible. The skin and bones of the gods were believed to be made of gold, the Egyptians used yellow extensively in tomb paintings, they usually used either yellow ochre or the brilliant orpiment, though it was made of arsenic and was highly toxic. A small paintbox with orpiment pigment was found in the tomb of King Tutankhamun, men were always shown with brown faces, women with yellow ochre or gold faces. The ancient Romans used yellow in their paintings to represent gold and it is found frequently in the murals of Pompeii. During the Post-Classical period, yellow became firmly established as the color of Judas Iscariot, from this connection, yellow took on associations with envy and duplicity.
The tradition started in the Renaissance of marking non-Christian outsiders, such as Jews, in 16th century Spain, those accused of heresy and who refused to renounce their views were compelled to come before the Spanish Inquisition dressed in a yellow cape. The color yellow has been associated with moneylenders and finance. The National Pawnbrokers Associations logo depicts three golden spheres hanging from a bar, referencing the three bags of gold that the saint of pawnbroking, St. Nicholas, holds in his hands. Additionally, the symbol of three golden orbs is found in the coat of arms of the House of Medici, a fifteenth century Italian dynasty of bankers and lenders
Christian Democratic Union of Germany
The Christian Democratic Union of Germany is a Christian democratic and liberal-conservative political party in Germany. It is the major party of the centre-right in German politics. The CDU forms the CDU/CSU grouping, known as the Union, the leader of the CDU, Angela Merkel, is the current Chancellor of Germany. The CDU is a member of the Centrist Democrat International, International Democrat Union, immediately following the collapse of the Nazi dictatorship at the end of World War II, the need for a new political order in Germany was paramount. Simultaneous yet unrelated meetings began occurring throughout Germany, each with the intention of planning a Christian-democratic party, the Christlich-Demokratische Union was established in Berlin on 26 June 1945, and in Rheinland and Westfalen in September of the same year. The founding members of the CDU consisted primarily of members of the Centre Party, German Democratic Party, German National Peoples Party. In the Cold War years, after World War II up to the 1960s, a prominent anti-Nazi member was theologian Eugen Gerstenmaier who became Acting Chairman of the Foreign Board.
One of the lessons learned from the failure of the Weimar Republic was that disunity among the parties ultimately allowed for the rise of the Nazi Party. It was therefore crucial to create a party of Christian Democrats – a Christian Democratic Union. The result of meetings was the establishment of an inter-confessional party influenced heavily by the political tradition of liberal conservatism. The latter was more nationalist and sought German reunification, even at the expense of concessions to the Soviet Union, the Western powers appreciated the CDUs moderation, its economic flexibility and its value as an oppositional force to the Communists, which appealed to European voters at the time. Also, Adenauer was trusted by the British, the party was split over issues of rearmament within the Western alliance and German unification as a neutral state. Adenauer staunchly defended his position and outmanoeuvred some of his opponents. He refused to consider the SPD as a party of the coalition until he felt sure that they shared his anti-Communist position, the CDU was the dominant party for the first two decades following the establishment of West Germany in 1949.
Konrad Adenauer remained the leader until 1963, at which point the former minister of economics Ludwig Erhard replaced him. As the Free Democratic Party withdrew from the coalition in 1966 due to disagreements over fiscal and economic policy. Consequently, a coalition with the SPD took over government under CDU Chancellor Kurt Georg Kiesinger. The CDU continued its role as opposition until 1982, when the FDP’s withdrawal from the coalition with the SPD allowed the CDU to regain power, CDU Chairman Helmut Kohl became the new Chancellor of West Germany and his CDU-FDP coalition was confirmed in the 1983 federal election
A political spectrum is a system of classifying different political positions upon one or more geometric axes that symbolize independent political dimensions. Most long-standing spectra include a wing and left wing, which originally referred to seating arrangements in the French parliament after the Revolution. According to the simplest left–right axis and socialism are usually regarded internationally as being on the left, liberalism can mean different things in different contexts, sometimes on the left, sometimes on the right. Those with an intermediate outlook are classified as centrists or moderates, politics that rejects the conventional left–right spectrum is known as syncretic politics. Political scientists have noted that a single left–right axis is insufficient for describing the existing variation in political beliefs. As seen from the Speakers seat at the front of the Assembly, the aristocracy sat on the right, the defining point on the ideological spectrum was the Ancien Régime.
The Right thus implied support for aristocratic or royal interests, and the church, while The Left implied support for republicanism and civil liberties. Because the political franchise at the start of the revolution was relatively narrow, the original Left represented mainly the interests of the bourgeoisie and their political interests in the French Revolution lay with opposition to the aristocracy, and so they found themselves allied with the early capitalists. However, this did not mean that their interests lay with the laissez-faire policies of those representing them politically. As capitalist economies developed, the aristocracy became less relevant and were replaced by capitalist representatives. This evolution has often pulled parliamentary politicians away from laissez-faire economic policies, for almost a century, social scientists have considered the problem of how best to describe political variation. In 1950, Leonard W. Submitting the results to factor analysis and this system was derived empirically, rather than devising a political model on purely theoretical grounds and testing it, Fergusons research was exploratory.
As a result of method, care must be taken in the interpretation of Fergusons three factors, as factor analysis will output an abstract factor whether an objectively real factor exists or not. Although replication of the Nationalism factor was inconsistent, the finding of Religionism and Humanitarianism had a number of replications by Ferguson, shortly afterward, Hans Eysenck began researching political attitudes in Great Britain. He believed that there was something similar about the National Socialists on the one hand. Submitting this value questionnaire to the process of factor analysis used by Ferguson. Such analysis produces a factor whether or not it corresponds to a real-world phenomenon, Eysencks dimensions of R and T were found by factor analyses of values in Germany and Sweden and Japan. According to Eysenck, members of both ideologies were tough-minded, in this context, Eysenck carried out studies on nazism and communist groups, claiming to find members of both groups to be more dominant and more aggressive than control groups
West Germany is the common English name for the Federal Republic of Germany or FRG in the period between its creation on 23 May 1949 to German reunification on 3 October 1990. During this Cold War era, NATO-aligned West Germany and Warsaw Pact-aligned East Germany were divided by the Inner German border, after 1961 West Berlin was physically separated from East Berlin as well as from East Germany by the Berlin Wall. This situation ended when East Germany was dissolved and its five states joined the ten states of the Federal Republic of Germany along with the reunified city-state of Berlin. With the reunification of West and East Germany, the Federal Republic of Germany, enlarged now to sixteen states and this period is referred to as the Bonn Republic by historians, alluding to the interwar Weimar Republic and the post-reunification Berlin Republic. The Federal Republic of Germany was established from eleven states formed in the three Allied Zones of occupation held by the United States, the United Kingdom and France, US and British forces remained in the country throughout the Cold War.
Its population grew from roughly 51 million in 1950 to more than 63 million in 1990, the city of Bonn was its de facto capital city. The fourth Allied occupation zone was held by the Soviet Union, as a result, West Germany had a territory about half the size of the interbellum democratic Weimar Republic. At the onset of the Cold War, Europe was divided among the Western and Eastern blocs, Germany was de facto divided into two countries and two special territories, the Saarland and divided Berlin. The Federal Republic of Germany claimed a mandate for all of Germany. It took the line that the GDR was an illegally constituted puppet state, though the GDR did hold regular elections, these were not free and fair. For all practical purposes the GDR was a Soviet puppet state, from the West German perspective the GDR was therefore illegitimate. Three southwestern states of West Germany merged to form Baden-Württemberg in 1952, in addition to the resulting ten states, West Berlin was considered an unofficial de facto 11th state.
It recognised the GDR as a de facto government within a single German nation that in turn was represented de jure by the West German state alone. From 1973 onward, East Germany recognised the existence of two German countries de jure, and the West as both de facto and de jure foreign country, the Federal Republic and the GDR agreed that neither of them could speak in the name of the other. The first chancellor Konrad Adenauer, who remained in office until 1963, had worked for an alignment with NATO rather than neutrality. He not only secured a membership in NATO but was a proponent of agreements that developed into the present-day European Union, when the G6 was established in 1975, there was no question whether the Federal Republic of Germany would be a member as well. With the collapse of communism in Central and Eastern Europe in 1989, symbolised by the opening of the Berlin Wall, East Germany voted to dissolve itself and accede to the Federal Republic in 1990. Its five post-war states were reconstituted along with the reunited Berlin and they formally joined the Federal Republic on 3 October 1990, raising the number of states from 10 to 16, ending the division of Germany
The Peoples Chamber was the unicameral legislature of the German Democratic Republic. Despite the appearance of a multi-party system, all these Bloc parties were completely subservient to the SED, in addition, seats were allocated to various mass organizations affiliated with the SED, such as the Free German Youth. Initially, it was the house of a bicameral legislature. The upper chamber was the Chamber of States, or Länderkammer, but in 1952 the states of East Germany were dissolved, in theory, the Volkskammer was the highest organ of state power in the GDR. Both GDR constitutions vested it with great lawmaking powers and it formally appointed the Council of State, the Council of Ministers, and the National Defence Council. All other branches of government—including the judiciary—were theoretically responsible to it, in practice, like most other legislatures in Communist countries, the Peoples Chamber did little more than rubber-stamp decisions already made by the SED and its Politburo. All parties were expected to respect the principles of democratic centralism, as a result, all but two measures put before it before the Peaceful Revolution passed unanimously.
A1972 vote on liberalising abortion laws saw 14 CDU representatives vote nay and eight abstain, during Peoples Chamber elections, voters were presented with a single list from the National Front, with seats allocated based on a set quota rather than actual vote totals. By ensuring that its candidates dominated the list, the SED effectively predetermined the composition of the legislature, the democratic centralist principle extended to the ballot box as well. A voter simply took the paper, which contained only one name. A voter could vote against the candidate by crossing out his or her name, the consequences for such an act of defiance were severe—loss of ones job or expulsion from school, and close surveillance by the Stasi. The table below shows an overview of the results of all parliamentary elections before 1990. ¹Eastern Bureau of the Social Democratic Party of Germany In 1976, the Volkskammer moved into a building on Marx-Engels-Platz. On paper, the president of the Peoples Chamber was the third-highest post in the GDR and was vice president of the country.
The last president of the Peoples Chamber, Sabine Bergmann-Pohl, was interim head of state during the last six months of East Germanys existence due to the State Council having been abolished. Presidium of the Peoples Chamber Show election A Successful Policy Seared to the Needs of the People Deliberations of the Volkskammer on nuclear disarmament,1981
Chancellor of Germany
The Chancellor of Germany is the head of government of Germany. The official title in German is Bundeskanzler, sometimes shortened to Kanzler, the term, dating from the early Middle Ages, is derived from the Latin term cancellarius. In German politics, the Chancellor is equivalent to that of a minister in many other countries. German has two equivalent translations of prime minister and Ministerpräsident, while Premierminister usually refers to heads of governments of foreign countries, Ministerpräsident may refer to the heads of government of most German states. The current Chancellor is Angela Merkel, who is serving her term in office. She is the first female chancellor, thus being known in German as Bundeskanzlerin, the role of the Chancellor has varied greatly throughout Germanys modern history. Today, the Chancellor is the effective leader. The office of Chancellor has a history, stemming back to the Holy Roman Empire. The title was, at times, used in several states of German-speaking Europe, the modern office of Chancellor was established with the North German Confederation, of which Otto von Bismarck became Chancellor in 1867.
After the Unification of Germany in 1871, the became known in German as Reichskanzler. With Germanys constitution of 1949, the title Bundeskanzler was revived in German, during the various eras, the role of the Chancellor has varied. From 1871 to 1918, the Chancellor was only responsible to the Emperor, with the founding of the republic and the constitutional reform in 1918, the Parliament was granted the right to dismiss the Reichskanzler. According to the Weimar Constitution of 1919, the Chancellor was appointed by the President and responsible to Parliament, when the Nazis came to power on 30 January 1933, the Weimar Constitution was de facto set aside. After the death of President Hindenburg in 1934, Adolf Hitler, the 1949 constitution gave the Chancellor much greater powers than during the Weimar Republic, while strongly diminishing the role of the President. Since 1867,33 individuals have served as heads of government of Germany or its predecessor, due to his administrative tasks, the head of the clerics at the chapel of an Imperial palace during the Carolingian Empire was called Chancellor.
The chapels college acted as the Emperors chancery issuing deeds and capitularies and these three Prince-Archbishops were Prince-electors of the Empire electing the King of the Romans. Already in medieval times, the German Chancellor had political power like Archbishop Willigis or Rainald von Dassel under Emperor Frederick Barbarossa. In 1559, Emperor Ferdinand I established the agency of an Imperial chancellery at the Vienna Hofburg Palace, upon the 1620 Battle of White Mountain, Emperor Ferdinand II created the office of an Austrian Court Chancellor in charge of the internal and foreign affairs of the Habsburg Monarchy
Egon Rudi Ernst Krenz is a former East German politician who was the last communist leader of East Germany during the final months of 1989. He succeeded Erich Honecker as the General Secretary of the ruling Socialist Unity Party of Germany, throughout his career, Krenz held a number of prominent positions in the SED. He was Honeckers deputy from 1984 onward, until he succeeded him in 1989 amid protests against the regime, Krenz was unsuccessful in his attempt to retain the communist regimes grip on power, and was forced to resign some weeks after the fall of the Berlin Wall. After German reunification in 1990 he was sentenced to six and a half years in prison for manslaughter and he retired to the small town of Dierhagen in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern upon his release from prison in late 2003. Krenz was born in Kolberg in what was part of Germany and his family resettled in Damgarten in 1944. After serving in the Volksarmee, Krenz joined the Socialist Unity Party of Germany in 1955, throughout his career, Krenz held a number of posts in the SED and the communist government.
He was leader of the Ernst Thälmann Pioneer Organisation from 1971 to 1974 and he was a member of the Peoples Chamber from 1971 to 1990, and a member of its presidium from 1971 to 1981. Between 1974 and 1983, he was leader of the communist youth movement, from 1981 to 1984 he was a member of the Council of State. In 1983 he joined the Politburo and became a secretary of the committee with responsibility for security. He rose to prominence when he became Honeckers deputy on the Council of State in 1984. Around the same time, he replaced Paul Verner as the unofficial number-two man in the SED leadership, although he was the youngest member of the Politburo, speculation abounded that Honecker had tapped him as his heir apparent. Krenz had been approached several months earlier about ousting Honecker, but was reluctant to move against a man he called my foster father and political teacher. He was initially willing to wait until the seriously ill Honecker died, despite many protests, the Peoples Chamber elected Krenz to both of Honeckers major state posts—Chairman of the Council of State and Chairman of the National Defence Council.
For only the time in the Peoples Chambers forty-year history. In his first address as leader, Krenz promised democratic reforms, for instance, they still remembered that after the Tiananmen Square massacre, he had gone to China to thank Deng Xiaoping on behalf of the regime. For this and other reasons, Krenz was almost as detested as Honecker had been, almost as soon as he took power, thousands of East Germans took to the streets to demand his resignation. Also on the day he took office, Krenz received a top secret report from planning chief Gerhard Schürer that showed the depths of East Germanys economic crisis. It showed that East Germany did not have money to make payments on the massive foreign loans that propped up the economy