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Encyclopedia > Wende
History of Germany
Timeline
Germanic tribes
Migration Period
Holy Roman Empire
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Since 1945
East Germany
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German reunification

German reunification (Deutsche Wiedervereinigung) took place on October 3, 1990, when the areas of the former German Democratic Republic (GDR - in English often called "East Germany") were incorporated into The Federal Republic of Germany ("West Germany") (FRG). After the GDR's first free elections on 18 March 1990, negotiations between the GDR and FRG culminated in a Unification Treaty, whilst negotiations between the GDR and FRG and the four occupying powers produced the so-called "Two Plus Four Treaty" granting full independence to a reunified German state. The reunified Germany remained a member of the European Community (later European Union) and NATO. The term "reunification" is used in contrast with the initial unification of Germany in 1871. The Holy Roman Empire, dating from the 8th century AD until 1806, was the first German Reich, or empire. ... This is a timeline of German history. ... The term Germanic tribes applies to the ancient Germanic peoples of Europe. ... Human migration denotes any movement of groups of people from one locality to another, rather than of individual wanderers. ... This page is about the Germanic empire. ... The German Confederation (German: Deutscher Bund) was a loose association of Central European states created by the Congress of Vienna in 1815 to organize the surviving states of the Holy Roman Empire, which had been abolished in 1806. ... The North German Confederation (German Norddeutscher Bund), a transitional grouping which existed (1867 - 1871) between the dissolution of the German Confederation and the founding of the German Empire, cemented Prussian control over the 22 states of Northern Germany and emanated that same control (via the Zollverein) into southern Germany. ... The term German Empire (Deutsches Reich) commonly refers to Germany, from its consolidation as a unified nation-state on January 18, 1871, until the abdication of Kaiser (Emperor) Wilhelm II on November 9, 1918. ... The period of German history from 1919 to 1933 is known as the Weimar Republic IPA (German Weimarer Republik). ... Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ... This page is intended to serve as a focal point for information pertinent to understanding German military activity during World War II. // Foreword When in 1933 Hitler gained power, and set on a massive program of rearmament, no one could have predicted the scope, intensity, and duration of the armed... After the beginning of the Cold War, following Germanys defeat in World War II, Germany was split for about 40 years, representing the focus of the two global blocks in the east and west. ... The German Democratic Republic (GDR) (German: Deutsche Demokratische Republik), also commonly known as East Germany, was a communist state that existed from 1949 to 1990 in the former Soviet occupation zone of Germany. ... October 3 is the 276th day of the year (277th in Leap years). ... 1990 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... East Germany, officially the German Democratic Republic (GDR), German Deutsche Demokratische Republik (DDR), was a socialist country that existed from 1949 to 1990. ... West Germany was the informal but almost universally used name for the Federal Republic of Germany from 1949 until 1990, during which years the Federal Republic did not yet include East Germany. ... March 18 is the 77th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (78th in leap years). ... 1990 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Treaty on the Final Settlement With Respect to Germany is the final peace treaty negotiated between the Federal Republic of Germany, the German Democratic Republic, and the Four Powers which occupied Germany at the end of World War II in Europe - France, the United Kingdom, the United States and... The European Community (EC), most important of three European Communities, was originally founded on March 25, 1957 by the signing of the Treaty of Rome under the name of European Economic Community. ... The flag of NATO NATO 2002 Summit in Prague The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), sometimes called North Atlantic Alliance, Atlantic Alliance or the Western Alliance, is an international organisation for defence collaboration established in 1949, in support of the North Atlantic Treaty signed in Washington, D.C., on April... The term German Empire (Deutsches Reich) commonly refers to Germany, from its consolidation as a unified nation-state on January 18, 1871, until the abdication of Kaiser (Emperor) Wilhelm II on November 9, 1918. ... 1871 was a common year starting on Sunday (see link for calendar). ...

Contents


Background

Occupied Berlin
Occupied Berlin

After the end of World War II in Europe, Germany had been divided into four occupation zones. The old capital of Berlin, as the seat of the Allied Control Council, was itself subdivided into four occupation zones. Although the intent was for the occupying powers to govern Germany together in the borders from 1947, the advent of Cold War tension caused the French, British and American zones to be formed into the Federal Republic of Germany (including West Berlin) while the Soviet zone formed the German Democratic Republic (including East Berlin) in 1949 with several eastern parts of the country being annexed to the People's Republic of Poland and the Soviet Union. The FRG and the GDR made competing claims to be the legitimate legal successors of the 1945 German state. Image File history File links map showing sectors of occupation of berlin File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links map showing sectors of occupation of berlin File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... This article chronicles the end of the European Theatre of World War II. On April 25, 1945 United States and Soviet troops linked-up, cutting Germany in two. ...   Berlin? (pronounced: , German ) is the capital of Germany and its largest city, with 3,426,000 inhabitants (as of January 2005); down from 4. ... The Control Council headquarters The Allied Control Council or Allied Control Authority, known in German as the Alliierter Kontrollrat, was a military occupation governing body of Germany after the end of World War II in Europe; the members were the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union. ... For the generic term for a high-tension rivalry between countries, see cold war (war). ... Boroughs of West Berlin West Berlin was the name given to the western part of Berlin between 1949 and 1990. ... State motto: Пролетарии всех стран, соединяйтесь! (transliteration: Proletarii vsekh stran, soedinyaytes!) (Russian: Workers of the world, unite!) Official language None; Russian (de facto) Capital Moscow Area  - Total  - % water 1st before collapse 22,402,200 km²  ?% Population  - Total  - Density 3rd before collapse 293,047,571 (July 1991) 13. ... East Germany, officially the German Democratic Republic (GDR), German Deutsche Demokratische Republik (DDR), was a socialist country that existed from 1949 to 1990. ... East Berlin was the name given to the eastern part of Berlin between 1949 and 1990. ... 1949 is a common year starting on Saturday. ... The Peoples Republic of Poland (Polish: Polska Rzeczpospolita Ludowa, PRL) was the official name of Poland from 1952 to 1989, during its period of rule by the Communist party, officially called the Polish United Workers Party (Polska Zjednoczona Partia Robotnicza, or PZPR). ...


A first proposal for German reunification was advanced by Josef Stalin in 1952 under terms similar to those later adopted for Austria (see Austrian State Treaty). It called for the creation of a neutral Germany with an eastern border on the Oder-Neisse line and all allied troops removed within the year. The West German government under Konrad Adenauer favored closer integration with western Europe and asked that the reunification be negotiated with the provision that there be internationally monitored elections throughout Germany. This condition was rejected by the Soviets. Also, Stalin had offered reunification of whole of Germany (in the borders of 1937) under condition that Germany joined the Warsaw Pact (Eastern Bloc). Joseph Stalin Iosif (Joseph) Vissarionovich Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Виссарионович Сталин), original name Ioseb Jughashvili (Georgian: იოსებ ჯუღაშვილი; see Other names section) (December 21, 18791 – March 5, 1953) was a Bolshevik revolutionary and a political leader in the Soviet Union. ... 1952 was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link will take you to calendar). ... The Austrian Independence Treaty (complete form: Treaty for the re-establishment of an independent and democratic Austria, signed in Vienna on the 15th May 1955), more commonly referred to as Austrian State Treaty (German Staatsvertrag), was signed on the 15th May 1955 in Vienna at Schloss Belvedere between the Allied... The Oder-Neisse line (German: Oder-Neiße-Grenze; Polish: Granica na Odrze i Nysie Łużyckiej) is the border between Germany and Poland. ... Konrad Adenauer (January 5, 1876 – April 19, 1967) was a conservative German statesman. ... World map showing location of Europe When considered a continent, Europe is the worlds second smallest continent in terms of area, with an area of 10,600,000 km² (4,140,625 square miles), making it larger than Australia only. ... Map of Warsaw Pact member countries. ... During the Cold War,the Eastern Bloc (or Soviet Bloc) comprised the following Central and Eastern European countries: Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, East Germany, Poland, Albania (until the early 1960s, see below), the Soviet Union, and Czechoslovakia. ...


The government of the GDR made it illegal for its citizens to leave the country, and built the GDR border system (of which the Berlin Wall was a part) in 1961 to prevent them from doing so. The GDR border system was formed by a series of chain-link fences, walls, turrets and mine fields that was in place from 1961 to 1990, and was 1381 km (858 miles) in length, the entire length of the border separating East and West Germany; just as the Berlin Wall... Berlin Wall on November 16, 1989 The Berlin Wall (German: Die Berliner Mauer) was a long barrier separating West Berlin from East Berlin and the surrounding territory of East Germany. ... 1961 was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...


The democratic government of the Federal Republic of Germany and its NATO allies at first did not recognize the German Democratic Republic or the People's Republic of Poland, per the Hallstein Doctrine. In the 1970s, this gave way to the warming of relations known as Ostpolitik. The Elections and Parties Series Democracy Representative democracy History of democracy Referenda Liberal democracy Representation Voting Voting systems Ideology Elections Elections by country Elections by calender Electoral systems Politics Politics by country Political campaigns Political science Political philosophy Related topics Political parties Parties by country Parties by name Parties by... The flag of NATO NATO 2002 Summit in Prague The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), sometimes called North Atlantic Alliance, Atlantic Alliance or the Western Alliance, is an international organisation for defence collaboration established in 1949, in support of the North Atlantic Treaty signed in Washington, D.C., on April... The Hallstein Doctrine, named after Walter Hallstein, was a key doctrine in the foreign policy of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) between 1955 and 1969. ... This article provides extensive lists of events and significant personalities of the 1970s. ... Ostpolitik or Eastern Politics was the effort by Willy Brandt, Chancellor of West Germany, to normalize relations with Eastern European nations including East Germany. ...


The end of the division ("Wende")

By the mid-1980s, the prospect of German reunification was widely regarded within both Germanies as a distant hope, unattainable as long as communists ruled Eastern Europe. This hope was suddenly placed within reach by political changes within the Soviet Union. // Events and trends The 1980s marked an abrupt shift towards more conservative lifestyles after the momentous cultural revolutions which took place in the 60s and 70s and the definition of the AIDS virus in 1981. ... Pre-1989 division between the West (grey) and Eastern Bloc (orange) superimposed on current national boundaries: Russia (dark orange), other countries of the former USSR (medium orange) and other former communist regimes (light orange). ...


In August 1989, Hungary removed its border restrictions with Austria and in September more than 13,000 East Germans escaped to the West through Hungary. Mass demonstrations against the East German regime began in late 1989, most prominently the Monday demonstrations in Leipzig. Faced with civil unrest, East German leader Erich Honecker was forced to resign in October, 1989. The travel restrictions for East Germans were subsequently removed by the new government on November 9, 1989, and many people immediately went to the Wall where the border guards opened access points and allowed them through. 1989 is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Monday Demonstrations 1989 Monday demonstration in Leipzig The Monday demonstrations started in 1989 in the Eastern German city of Leipzig after prayers for peace in the Nikolai Church with parson Christian Führer. ... Map of Germany showing Leipzig   Leipzig? [ˈlaiptsɪç] (Polish; Sorbian/Lusatian: Lipsk) is the largest city in the federal state (Bundesland) of Saxony in Germany. ... Erich Honecker – official GDR portrait Erich Honecker (25 August 1912–29 May 1994) was a German Communist politician who led East Germany from 1971 until 1989. ... November 9 is the 313th day of the year (314th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 52 days remaining. ... 1989 is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


On March 18, 1990 the first and only free elections in the history of the GDR were held, producing a government whose major mandate was to negotiate an end to itself and its state. As one East German ideologist noted in 1989, "Poland would remain Poland even if communism fell, but without communism East Germany has no reason to exist." March 18 is the 77th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (78th in leap years). ... 1990 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Under Prime Minister Lothar de Maizière, East Germany negotiated with West Germany, the United Kingdom, France, the United States and the Soviet Union the preconditions for a German reunification. West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl successfully persuaded the Soviet leadership to accept the idea of a reunited Germany remaining in the NATO alliance. Parallel to this, negotiations between the East and West German governments led to the signing on 18 May of an agreement for an intermediate step, an Economic, Social and Currency Union, which entered into force on 1 July. On 23 August the East German Parliament (Volkskammer) approved the proposed 3 October accession to the FRG. The German "Einigungsvertrag" (Unification Treaty) was signed on August 31, 1990 by representatives of the FRG and GDR. On September 12, 1990 the Treaty on the Final Settlement With Respect to Germany (Two Plus Four Treaty) was signed and officially reestablished the sovereignty of both German states. Lothar de Maizière [] (born 2 March 1940) is a German conservative politician. ... Dr. Helmut Kohl (full name Helmut Josef Michael Kohl) (born April 3, 1930) is a German conservative politician and statesman. ... The Volkskammer was the Parliament of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). ... August 31 is the 243rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (244th in leap years), with 122 days remaining, as the final day of August. ... 1990 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... September 12 is the 255th day of the year (256th in leap years). ... 1990 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Treaty on the Final Settlement With Respect to Germany is the final peace treaty negotiated between the Federal Republic of Germany, the German Democratic Republic, and the Four Powers which occupied Germany at the end of World War II in Europe - France, the United Kingdom, the United States and... The Treaty on the Final Settlement With Respect to Germany is the final peace treaty negotiated between the Federal Republic of Germany, the German Democratic Republic, and the Four Powers which occupied Germany at the end of World War II in Europe - France, the United Kingdom, the United States and...


Germany was officially reunified on October 3, 1990, when the five reestablished federal states (Bundesländer) of East Germany formally joined the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), choosing one of two options implemented in the West German constitution (Grundgesetz). As the new founded German states formally joined the Federal Republic, the area in which the Grundgesetz (basic law) served as constitution was simply extended. The other choice would have been for East Germany to join as a whole along the lines of a formal union between two German states that then would have had to, amongst other things, create a new constitution for the new founded country. Though the option chosen clearly was simpler, it is and has been responsible for sentiments in the East of being "occupied" or "annexed" by the old Federal Republic. October 3 is the 276th day of the year (277th in Leap years). ... 1990 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Germany is a federation of 16 states commonly called Länder (singular Land, which may be translated as country) or officially Bundesländer (singular Bundesland, German federal state). ... The Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany (German: Grundgesetz für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland) is the constitution of modern Germany. ...


To facilitate this process and to reassure other countries, the FRG made some changes to the "Basic Law" (constitution). Article 146 was amended so that Article 23 of the current constitution could be used for reunification. Then once the five "reestablished federal states" in East Germany had joined, the Basic Law was amended again to indicate that there were no other parts of Germany, which existed outside of the unified territory, that had not acceded. But the constitution can be amended again at some future date and it still permits the adoption of another constitution by the German people at some time in the future. Preamble of the Grundgesetz The Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany (German: Grundgesetz für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland) is the constitution of modern Germany. ...


Effects of reunification

The cost of reunification has been a heavy burden to the German economy and has contributed to Germany's slowed economic growth in recent years. The costs of reunification are estimated to amount to over 1.5 trillion Euro (statement of Freie Universität Berlin) (1.9 trillion U.S. Dollars). This is more than the national debt of the German state [1]. The primary cause of this was the severe weakness of the East German economy, especially vis-à-vis the West German economy, combined with a (politically motivated) conversion rates from East German Mark to the Deutschmark that did not reflect this economical reality, resulting in a very sudden (usually fatal) loss of competitiveness of East German industries. Today, there are still special transfers of more than 100 billion euros every year to rebuild the eastern part of Germany. During the 1980s, the capitalist economy of West Germany had prospered while the communist economy of East Germany had declined. Providing goods and services to East Germany strained the resources of West Germany. Money-losing industries formerly supported by the East German government had to be privatized. Germany is the worlds third largest economy and the largest in Europe. ... The euro (€; ISO 4217 code EUR) is the currency of twelve European Union member states: Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain. ... The United States dollar is the official currency of the United States. ... A 10 Deutsche Mark banknote from Germany 1993 showing Carl Friedrich Gauss (http://www. ... // Events and trends The 1980s marked an abrupt shift towards more conservative lifestyles after the momentous cultural revolutions which took place in the 60s and 70s and the definition of the AIDS virus in 1981. ...


Since reunification, hundreds of thousands of former East Germans have continued to migrate to western Germany to find well-paying jobs.


External links

  • The lessons of German reunification

  Results from FactBites:
 
Wends - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (497 words)
The term Wends was used in connection to all Slavs inhabiting west of Poland and north of Bohemia — Polabians, Pomeranians and Sorbs.
A notable settlement of Wends in Texas is the town of Serbin, in Lee County, where a church, St. Paul's Lutheran Church, stands as a typical example of Wendish architecture.
In 13th century there was indeed a people called Wends or Vends living as far as in Northern Latvia around the city of Wenden and it is not known if they were indeed Slavs as their name suggests.
Wends - Wikipedia (321 words)
Wends are a sub-group of the Sorbs, a Slavic people who moved into Central Europe during the Völkerwanderung, most likely in response to pressure by the westward movement of peoples like Huns, and Avars.
Reportedly, some of their descendants, also called Wends or Lusation Sorbs, are still living in Lusatia today, where the language is maintained in the schools.
Moreover, the Wends who wished to continue living in the Empire were compelled to worship the form of Lutheranism preferred by the Germans.
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