Berlin Wall - Checkpoints Opened, November 9, 1989

On November 9, 1989—fifty-one years to the day that Nazi troops began a violent rampage against Jewish businesses and synagogues, known as Kristallnacht ("Night of Broken Glass")—the government of East Germany opened checkpoints along the Berlin Wall.

People living in East Berlin were able—for the first time in decades—to freely leave East Berlin and travel to the Western part of the city. 

About seven months later, "Checkpoint Charlie," the famous checkpoint in the American Sector of Berlin, was dismantled (on June 22, 1990).

This video clip, from the BBC's Breakfast News—broadcast on the morning of November 10, 1989—includes historical footage of the actual events as they unfolded after the checkpoints were first opened.

The reporter on the scene in Berlin, that historic night, is Brian Hanrahan (who died in December 2010). 

The BBC presenter in this clip, Jill Dando, was tragically murdered soon after she arrived home on the morning of April 26, 1999.  Her killer was never apprehended.

A note about the red poppies which journalists are wearing. Events culminating in the fall of the wall began two days before Remembrance Day (known as Veterans' Day in America).

In Britain, as well as in other Commonwealth Nations, people wear red poppies—on Remembrance Day (November 11), Remembrance Sunday (the Sunday closest to November 11) and the days leading-up to it—to honor military personnel who died fighting for their countries.

See, also:

BBC Report - Berlin Wall Checkpoints Opened, 9 November 1989, Part 2

Media Credits

Clip from BBC's Breakfast News, broadcast 10 November 1989.  Copyright, BBC, all rights reserved.  Clip provided here as fair use for educational purposes.


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"Berlin Wall - Checkpoints Opened, November 9, 1989" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Feb 18, 2020.
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