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Berlin in the international relations of 1945 to 1990

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During the Second World War, Berlin, the capital of the Nazi Third Reich established by Hitler, suffered heavy shelling from the Allied air forces and became the object of struggle between the Soviets and the Anglo-Saxons. Following the agreements of Yalta (February 1945), the Americans abandoned the conquest to the Soviets, who from April 22 to May 2, 1945, engaged in bitter fighting. Hitler, who, trapped in his bunker in the Chancellery, committed suicide with Eva Braun whom he had recently married. On May 2, 1945, General Zhukov received the surrender of 70,000 last defenders of Berlin.

The re-conquest of Berlin, won by the Red Army, was a premise of the Cold War that characterized international relations from 1945 to 1991. Berlin became an issue among the blocks and democratic West, led by the United States and the communist block, led by the USSR. To what extent did Berlin occupy a strategic position in Europe before the release of the opposition and become an actor of international relations?

First, Berlin was conquered, and was divided between the Allies and shared between two blocks operating in radically different directions in the first confrontation of the Cold War (1945-1958). Then, the construction of the wall of material symbol of the ?Iron Curtain' that Churchill spoke in 1946 during his speech at Fulton was completed. Berlin oscillated between tension and relaxation of international relations, characterized by the policies of Willy Brandt and by peace movements (1958-1976). Finally, an acute crisis of the Euro-missiles, the reunification of Germany, led Berliners to become actors of their destiny and assert independently on the international stage (1976-1990).

Berlin released: in the streets of Berlin released by the Red Army, Soviet soldiers patrol with red armbands. There were cars with loudspeakers announcing the surrender. A soldier raises the Soviet flag on the Brandenburg Gate. The cameras, photographers of the Army make their devices crackle (Vasily Grossman with the first journalist to enter Berlin). The symbolic image of victory was photographed and released. What is signed in Berlin, May 8, 1948, was the capitulation of the Reich.

Until June 1945, the former capital was occupied by the Soviets alone, and the Potsdam Conference(in July-August 1945: cf. Progress) confirm the division (already included in Yalta in February 1945) in Berlin in four sectors of occupation, Soviet, American, English and French, under the supreme authority of a Kommandantur ally. The conference provides the "five Ds": demilitarization, denazification, democratization, decartelization (i.e. removal of large firms with particular advantage of the concentration camps and genocide) and decentralization.

As in the rest of West Germany, Nazi officials in Berlin tried to escape the denazification that have been staged at the Nuremberg trials [black market Persilschein, post that you "wash" your sins Nazis, after answering a short questionnaire about your involvement in the Third Reich]. Thus, the Church, including the Protestants, opposed the Allied denazification measures, including under the auspices of Bishop Dibelius of Berlin.

The years 1946-1947 were marked by the failure of the Paris Conference (April 1946), Peace (July-October 1946), Moscow(March 10, 1947) and London (November-December 1947),responsible for resolving the fate of Germany demilitarized and democratized denazification , on the principle of free elections and reunification.

Tags: Berlin; international relations 1945-1990; strategic position occupied by Berlin; reunification of Germany;

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