Monday, 29 July 2013

Germany Part 1 - East

On Friday, 19th July we left the Czech Republic and headed north to Dresden, a town which had been heavily bombed in WWII and has since been beautifully rebuilt.

On Saturday, 20th July we walked into town and had a look around and went to the Palace to see a collection of tournament and ceremonial weapons and accroutements dating back to the 1500's - which was very interesting.

On Sunday, 21st July we left for Berlin and spent a couple of days there doing walking tours and finding out about the history of this interesting city.

Hitler's Bunker - this is basically it.  A few trees, a bit of grass in a carpark, plus a sign with information on it. The government has the problem of not wanting this area to become a shrine or area of worship to Hitler but needing to remember/not forget one of the most important historical sites of the 20th Century - Barnaby, our tour guide said this.

This memorial is very controversial for many reasons, suck as the chemical used to make the blocks non-graffiti comes from the same factory that made the gas used to kill the Jews, but many companies in Germany have a past involving the war, and what about other non-Jews, such as homosexuals who were murdered - where is their memorial. The blocks are all different sizes and many are imperfect, ie they slope to one side - the Jews as well as the other people Hitler murdered where all imperfect in his eyes and didn't fit into his ideals.  The view on the left is as you walk through the memorial - only one person can fit down any row - single file, there is no where to hide, and it's easy to lose your companions in there.  The outer rim of the site has many trees - a sign of life.

So Berlin was a very interesting and emotionally moving city for me.  My father is German and my opa died in WWII and in the next blog I visit my father's village where he grew up and show you pictures from around there in West Germany.

Gute nacht.

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