It looked like it would be a usual Sunday as many other Sundays ever. That was on August 13, 1961.
But during the night from Saturday to Sunday it started. All streets between Western and Eastern parts were closed and guarded. During the first days it was more a fence that was erected to divide the city.
Thus August 13, 1961 is not the day of Berlin Wall built actually but it is just the day when first steps were taken.
The existing tube and subway links were interrupted. Some tube lines starting in the West, passing the East and then returning to the West had then closed „Ghost stations“ in the middle just past by the trains without people on platforms and without stopping.
It was the first time in history known that in time of peace a city was totally separated.The world had really two Berlins. Most people could not pass to the other side. The period with one of the best guarded borders in the world with all its killed persons and personal tragedies had started. There were protest from Mayor of Berlin (West) Willy Brandt, the German Government in Bonn and the Western Allied, but especially for the Allied it was important to keep the links to their Berlin part, but not to risk a military confrontation.
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While Soviet Army was almost not directly involved there were more Soviet guards than usually at the Allied check points where members of the Berlin mission of the USA, UK, France and the Soviet Union could pass to the other side.
Additionally, Soviet troops were in alarm status around Berlin and one of their most experienced Marshals was a commander in chief since the situation was extraordinary and had to be under a special control.
The most well known of checkpoints is called Charlie (between the US and the Soviet zones) where the world saw later on ( October 27, 1961) US and Soviet tanks standing face to face with just a few meters separating them from the World War Third.
It was the time of highest tension in the global politics since situation was close to become uncontrolled. That scene proved that Berlin was one of the hottest and most dangerous places in the cold war.
The Berlin Wall had existed for more than 28 years. And you can imagine that people had to cope with it.
Some even got
used or younger ones did not know Berlin without the Wall at all.
From 1963 inhabitants of Berlin (West) could visit
Berlin (East) if they applied and got special allowance. Also a lot of Eastern pensioners could enter West Berlin.
were partial measures that did not change the character of Berlin Wall built to separate the city for political and
People tried to pass the wall even being aware of the danger. It was horrible but most people got used that the Wall existed.