Death and murder again. In Berlin this time. On a Christmas market. Dozens killed or injured. Again. Same M.O. So easy to run a lorry through the crowd. And then run away. True cowards always. I read the news by “chance” yesterday. At the other end of the world. And the world keeps turning. As long as it happens elsewhere, not on your door-step. I… I can’t really take it any more. I had started reading “Submission” by Houellebecque. The book came out on the day of the Charlie Hebdo killings. I’ve had it on my shelves for almost 2 years now. Couldn’t bring myself to open it. Just started it last week. Can’t open it again. So, in helplessness, all I can do is a tribute to Berlin. And its Volk, its people. (And please excuse my scant german: “Dem Berlin Volke”, is probably misspelled. Doesn’t matter does it? This is dedicated” To the people of Berlin”:
The Wall. Potsdamer Platz. The old and new. The wall that divided Europe. Stuck with chewing-gum. I like the idea. Though I doubt chewing-gum will be enough against the murderers.
The Brandenburg Gate. A symbol of Germany and a landmark of Berlin.
The Brandenburg Gate opens on the Pariser Platz. Paris Square:
This shot was taken on the 14th of July 2010, the French National Holiday, “Fête Nationale”. The French Embassy is to the right. There was wine, food, music and party on the square. And I couldn’t help but think that maybe we could have skipped three major franco-German wars – including two World Wars – and go directly to the wine and cheese.
Unter den linden, “under the lime trees” is possibly one of the most poetic street names I have ever seen. It was very popular at the turn of the 20th century, as a promenade. It still is very pleasant, with cafés and restaurants.
A bridge on the Spree river.
Berlin, a city at peace. 2010.
Fight! Kill the lion!
Marx and Engels, in East-Berlin. Berlin has too much history.
I don’t know of any other city that has a “Museum Island”. (Wonderful and wunderbar indeed)
A Lego giraffe, near Alexanderplatz if I recall.
A scale-model of Red Baron Von Richthofen’s plane.
The rebuilt Reichstag (Parliament). I close my eyes and can see the photograph of the Russian soldiers planting the Red Army flag on top of its charred remains in 1945. The reading on the front? Dem Deutschen Volke. To the German People.
And this is where another murderer launched a lorry into the crowd:
Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial church is all that remains from an old church in Berlin. The charred stump of the belfry stood among the rubbles of the bombings in 1945. It was not demolished but integrated into a new structure as a reminder of the perils of war. It faces the zoo on Breitscheidplatz.
Tonight, and for many nights ahead, as the murderer is running loose, there are candles and flowers near the church. As in every place hapless killings have occurred lately. I hate to say this: Candles and flowers are not going to cut it. May all the victims rest in peace. Yet may we all realize that we have to fight back.