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Berlin 1945: A Broken City

Berlin 1945. One could say it looked like hell on Earth. Many hearts would break. Many families broken. Violence. Hatred. Animal fighting. Desperate defences.. Then death. Rape of defenceless women. Orphaned children. An entire nation at the mercy of gloating victors, who their leaders had described as sub-human. Heart-breaking... That was Berlin in 1945.

Even after so many years, the pictures below bring back the tragedy of that time.

The Russians rush through the streets of Berlin to overcome the last of the German resistance.

Hitler was desperate. He was depressed. He was sending little boys to stop the advancing Russians. A sad end to a man who once led the mightiest army in the world.

The prime of German youth was wiped out. An entire generation of German men.When the Russians entered Berlin in April 1945, nearly 80% of the population was of women. The rest were boys and old men.

A broken Hitler seen for the last time on film. A day before he ended his life.

Ruins everywhere. Brandenburg Gate mutely witnesses the agony of a once proud nation.

The last of the fighting German soldiers emerge from a subway to surrender.

Russian planes roar above as soldiers rush to capture the Reichstag

The Reichstag burns

Goebbels killed himself and his family

German women watch helplessly as Russian tanks trundle into Berlin

The last few remaining German soldiers walk into captivity as Russians watch atop a tank.

The desperate fighting in the city reduced it to rubble

The Red Flag flies over the Reichstag. The city lies below, totally broken

These old men are that is left of German males.

German women. Before the nightmare of mass-rape by Russian soldiers began

German children have these 'toys' to play with

Berlin burns

These Russian officers are interested in examining things at the former Gestapo headquarters

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May 1945 - If hell on earth existed, than it existed in Prague after May the 5th. 1945. Old men, women and children were beaten to death and maimed. Rapes, barbaric cruelties, horror-scenarios of hellish proportions - here they had been let lose.

- Ludek Pachmann, Czech Chess-Grand Master and publicist, forty years after the fact.

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"History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are."

History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again.


HISTORY, n. An account mostly false, of events mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers mostly knaves, and soldiers mostly fools.
-- Ambrose Bierce

We learn from history that we learn nothing from history.


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Snippets from History

This short but important battle played a key role in the decision to use atomic bombs when attacking Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The battle showed just how far Japanese troops would go to defend their country.

Snippets From History

Paulus didn't give the order to 6th Army to surrender, but his troops no longer had much fight left in them. Resistance faded out over the next two days, with the last die-hards finally calling it quits. One Red Army colonel shouted at a group of prisoners, waving at the ruins all around them: "That's how Berlin is going to look!


History is Philosophy teaching by examples.


"Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it."
-- George Santayana

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The aim of individuals in any society is money and power. Societies that give equal chance to all its members to get them will be the most stable. That is why democracies are more stable than other systems of governance.

China after Deng's reform gave the chance to get rich but power is in the hands of an elite; the Communist Party of China. Membership to the party is at the whims of the local party bosses. This leaves out many people who crave political power dissatisfied and disgruntled. There in lies the roots of instability. The Party suppressed these demands once at Tiananmen in 1989. But force is hardly the way to deal with things like these.

READ MORE: Tiananmen Square Massacre