Travel: Berlin

2013-05-06 05.16.26Don’t get me wrong. Berlin is still a culturally vibrant and thriving city. It may have  a dark past, but despite those shadows, it has managed to fight beyond the repression, and rise like a phoenix from the ashes. Sometimes it still gets a bad reputation as ‘the concrete city,’ but she bravely flaunts the lessons learned from the 20th century.

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For example, it has used former Nazi Locations such as the current Topography of Terror, Bebelplatz, and Fuhrer’s Bunker to educate the citizens about oppression, genocide, and the darker side of man. This allows for individuals to recognize the indicators of dictatorship, and provide hope for prevention of this power takeover be attempted again.

The museum about the rise of the Cold War at Checkpoint Charlie, and the international freedom memorial at the East Side Gallery, proclaim loudly to the world that freedom of expression is a basic human right. It uses vibrant color splashed along a long stretch of the former Berlin Wall to support individual thought, the legitimacy of homosexuality, and the power of expression.

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This is best represented through the glass dome of the infamous Reichstag; it is the 2nd most visited attraction in Germany. From above, visitors can directly observe the chambers of parliament while they are in session. For the politicians, this is a reminder that the population elected them into their positions, and can also take the offices away. As an official, it its their duty to serve the desires of their constituents, not individual and subversive agendas.

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What are your thoughts on these iconic wars? How have they impacted Germany, and furthermore, the governance of the world?