Diplomacy Ode to a New Day

With Germany united and a conventional arms-control agreement in hand, East and West begin a different kind of collective security

At the stroke of midnight on Oct. 3, a mammoth black, red and gold flag rose in front of the floodlit Reichstag in Berlin, signifying that 41 years after its division, there was again one Germany. "We want to serve peace in a united Europe and the world," proclaimed President Richard von Weizsacker.

The dissolution of communist East Germany and its voluntary merger with the Federal Republic was a political event with no modern precedent. It was also a mighty spectacle as millions of Germans celebrated with beer and wine in places with evocative names like Unter den Linden and the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!