Soviet War Memorial Tiergarten

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The memorial in the Tiergarten in honour of the fallen Soviet soldiers is the next attraction in Berlin, to which we moved after visiting the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag. The most important one for me that we saw that day.
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    #Monuments

Creation of a memorial
Something I got carried away with the emotional component I will continue, as usual, by giving a little historical background about the memorial in the Tiergarten:
The monument built in November 1945 (the memorial in Treptow was opened only in 1949). celebrated the opening with a ceremony attended by all Allied forces.
On the sides of the monument are 2 T-34-76 tanks and 2 ML-20 howitzers (152 mm calibre), which took part in the battles in Berlin. Later, when looking at the photo, I saw holes that looked like holes in the left tank's turret and frontal armour plate. It claimed that these tanks were among the first to enter Berlin.
The names of only 178 soldiers recorded on traditional memorial plaques. The total number of those buried here is 2,000 - 2,500 people. The exact figure is unknown. The total losses of Soviet troops during the capture of Berlin estimated at more than 22,000 people. The primary graves located behind the monument.
As conceived by the creators, the bronze warrior, with his gesture, seems to say goodbye to the fallen.

Emotions
The memorial in the Tiergarten is quite large. It covers an area of ​​approximately 55 * 50 meters. But it is noted should that it is far from the memorial in Treptower Park in terms of size and scale.
In any case, the memorial impressed me personally. What I saw, the main thoughts in my head, are pride in the past of their homeland and respect for German adherence to principles.
At the first moment, I think everything is clear, and our ancestors are real Heroes.
Second, not every country is ready to adhere to the terms of the agreements so clearly, no matter how humiliating they may be for it. When we were withdrawing troops from Germany, the FRG government pledged to keep the memorial intact. And fulfil his obligation flawlessly. To have, almost under the windows of the Bundestag, a marvellous testimony of the defeat of one's country and not to hide it is vital. I am sure that this behaviour is a sign of strength, not weakness.
Of course, not everything is so rosy. The English Wikipedia claims that the Tiergarten memorial has earned several "unflattering names among residents, such as the Tomb of the Unknown Rapist."
I return once again to the comparison with the memorial in Treptow Park in this context. Yes, the complex in Treptow is grandiose. However, it is located closer to the outskirts of the city and does not so many "eyes" the Germans. But the memorial in the Tiergarten - they have it just like a bone across the throat. And they still endure!

Tiergarten memorial the fate after the division of Berlin.
The memorial, initially built in the British occupation zone of Berlin, naturally ended up in West Berlin after dividing the city into western and eastern parts. After the construction of the Berlin Wall, the memorial located on the other side of the territory controlled by Soviet troops. At the same time, the monument fenced, and there was a constant guard of Soviet soldiers. Thus, it was a small Soviet enclave inside West Berlin, only 300 meters from the Wall. Considering that West Berlin was also an enclave, we get the presence of an enclave within the enclave.
On February 23, May 9 and November 7, a Soviet delegation went to the memorial from East to West Berlin every year to lay wreaths. Opponents viewed this (especially in the 50-the 60s) as a political action.
In 1961, after the Berlin Wall construction, British soldiers surrounded the memorial with barbed wire, fearing desecration by the inhabitants of West Berlin.
07/11/1970 21-year-old West Berliner, neo-Nazi Eckerhard Weil shot at 20-year-old Soviet soldier Ivan Shcherbak, guarding the memorial in Tiergarten. He hit twice and seriously wounded Ivan.
In 1995 the Germans completely restored the sculpture and the pedestal. Later, the Bundeswehr military from the 5th Berlin rifle battalion was involved in the restoration work on the stairs.
On 22/12/1990, a solemn ceremony of parting the Soviet guard of honour with the monument took place.

Last Updated: 17 June, 2021
Information sources: © 33ways.ru