How Germany Forgot the Horrors of Communism

25 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the former East Germany is seen as a quirk of history, not a monstrous police state.


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Germany recently celebrated 25 years of reunification with a beautiful art installation retracing the path of the Berlin Wall and educational exhibits of its Cold War history. For many Germans, it was a rare moment of reflection on the horrors perpetrated by the German Democratic Republic (a.k.a. GDR, East Germany, DDR).

The phenomenon known as Ostalgie, or nostalgia for the East, along with favorable views of socialism, have led to a curious whitewashing of the GDR's legacy. Particularly among young Germans, the GDR is seen as a quirk of history, a strange but charming place with campy state-manufactured products and a culture of nude beaches and enthusiastic collectivism, rather than a monstrous police state which imprisoned, murdered, tortured, and spied on its own people.

Reason TV visited Berlin and spoke with DDR Museum Scientific Director Dr. Stefan Wolle, Students for Liberty's Frederik Cyrus Roeder, Prometheus think tank founder Clemens Schnieder, and Lichtgrenze artists Mark and Christopher Bauder about why Germans are so skittish about confronting the country's dark communist legacy.  

About 4 minutes.

Produced by Anthony L. Fisher.

Music: "Profound Groove On The Rise" by Jared C. Balogh (http://www.alteredstateofmine.net)

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