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Berlin Wall's legacy a reminder of democracy's fragility

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If you grew up during the Cold War, watching the Berlin Wall come down was as earth-shaking an event as the moon landing or 9-11.

It had stood for almost 30 years, surrounding West Berlin, a symbol of the standoff between the Western NATO alliance and the Soviet communist Warsaw Pact, which dominated geopolitics for decades after the Second World War.

Any East German trying to cross the wall to escape the bleak conditions of the Soviet bloc risked everything. Nearly 80 people were killed over the years trying to elude barbed wire and machine-gun posts to reach the West.

It was the focus of hundreds of spy novels and suspense thrillers. If you wanted to dramatize the divide between the East and West in........

© The Telegram