Berlin: The Hole in the Wall

The sweetest Christmas music Berliners have heard in more than two years had nothing to do with Bach or Handel. It was the ugly stutter of jackhammers tearing gates in the Berlin Wall, the whine of cranes removing zigzag barriers from heavily guarded crossing points. Then, late last week, the candy-stripe customs poles went up, and thousands of grinning, gift-laden West Berliners swarmed through the Wall for their first reunions with eastern sector relatives since August 1961. A long row of glowing charcoal braziers warmed the approach to the Oberbaum Bridge, and...

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