Google Doodle is marking the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall today. Today’s Doodle, created by Berlin-based guest artist Max Guther, depicts the beginning of the German unification. On this evening in 1989, the crowds gathered at the Berlin Wall roared “Tor auf!” (“Open the gate!”). It marks a peaceful revolution signaling the simultaneous end of the Cold War and the beginning of German reunification. “The fall of the Berlin wall deeply impacted not only me but all Germans and Europeans,” Guther said in a blog post.
The fall of the Berlin Wall came amidst winds of change blowing across Europe. The new leadership in Russia, Poland, and Hungary had high hopes in East Germany for an end to 28 years of strict travel restrictions. An official spokesman’s statement during a government press conference gave mistaken impression. The spokesman suggested that East Germany would allow free travel between East and West Berlin. Within hours, a massive crowd gathered at the wall and they far outnumbered the border crossing guards.
According to reports, an officer in charge of the Bornholmer Street checkpoint defied his superiors and gave the order to open the gate. The event, which took place sometime before midnight, changed the course. Over the next few days, over 2 million jubilant Germans crossed the border. Some signing, dancing, and toasting the start of a new era while other began physically dismantling the wall. The wall was erected on August 13, 1961, in the form of barbed wire and concrete edifice.
It divided East and West Berlin. Its demolition led to the reunion of the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic. “I mostly drew inspiration from stories and old photographs of my parents who were in Berlin 30 years ago,” Guther said. “They witnessed the fall of the Berlin Wall.” In a Doodle blog, Guther asks people to start fighting against border walls all over the world. He asks people to help those living in divided or separate countries.