hidden europe 51

#AlternativeFacts: Keeping the Barbarians at Bay

by Nicky Gardner

Picture above: photo @ Perolsson / dreamstime.com


We reflect on the nature of truth, lies and alternative facts. We've noticed that #AlternativeFacts seem very much in fashion these days.

Living and working in Berlin, we know a thing or two about walls. Berlin was of course divided in two by a wall for almost three decades. That wall was built, as we all know, purely for the purpose of protecting the East German state against meddling interference by the aggressive West. The East German government called their wall the Antifaschistischer Schutzwall — the Anti-Fascist Protective Rampart, which was a trumped-up name for an ugly piece of concrete. Anyway, the Berlin Wall did a sterling job in keeping the barbarians at bay and everyone looked forward to the great anniversaries recalling the construction of the glorious rampart. The Kampfgruppen der Arbeiterklasse (Combat Groups of the Working Class) always put on a splendid show for those anniversaries. The regime used state-of-the-art Communist technology to give perfectly accurate figures for the size of the crowds who turned out to rejoice at the success of the Berlin Wall.

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