Berlin: Design for a Nightmare

Much of the barbed wire is gone, and the ugly grey cinder blocks are rapidly giving way to trim slabs of concrete. Just a few feet away, workmen are busily dismantling the forbidding old wooden watchtowers and replacing them with neat rectangular structures that look more like mountaintop tourist lookouts than machine-gun nests. At first glance, the scene is strangely placid; Western visitors can hardly believe that they are at the edge of Berlin's infamous Wall.

Less Plausible. A closer look reveals the harsh realities. For all its outward appearance, East German Boss Walter Ulbricht's New Wall is even less...

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