The Fall of the Berlin Wall, 25 Years Later

This weekend marks the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. While much is going to be written about this quarter-century anniversary, my colleague Fred Smith has an excellent piece from the 20th anniversary that’s well worth revisiting.

On November 9, 1989, the Berlin Wall came crashing down. Today marks the twentieth anniversary of that great day – one of the greatest in the history of human freedom. Communism in Germany finally collapsed, setting off a domino effect that would reach Moscow within two years. Families torn apart for nearly three decades came together in tearful, happy reunions as the world watched. The Cold War was finally, mercifully, ending.


November 9, 1989 was also the start of something better. It was a nation’s way of saying that it was ready to move on to better times. To a new world defined not by oppression, ideology, and servitude, but by freedom. Sweet, precious, fragile freedom. Seeing the footage on the news was like witnessing something being born. The hope and potential that surround every birth were glimmering in people’s eyes. It was beautiful.

Fred goes on to introduce the short video CEI produced that year, which told the story of how the Berlin Wall was built and the people who died trying to cross over it to freedom. Thanks again to the talented Drew Tidwell for putting together such a moving tribute to the human spirit.

Another colleague, RealClear Radio Hour producer Amanda France, reminds me that host Bill Frezza will also be dedicating this week’s show to remembering the Wall and its legacy, featuring Lawrence Reed and Peter Robinson:

Resistance Movements and the 25th Anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall

Lawrence Reed, President of the Foundation for Economic Education, recounts stories of the anti-Communist resistance movements throughout Eastern Europe that sustained peoples’ hopes through the dark days of the Cold War and contributed to the fall of the Berlin Wall. 

“Tear Down This Wall” and the 25th Anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall

Peter Robinson, research fellow at the Hoover Institution and host of Uncommon Knowledge, tells how he became President Reagan’s speechwriter at 26, what inspired Reagan’s famous line at the Brandenburg Gate, and the behind-the-scenes controversy over those four words.

You can listen live Saturdays at 10a or 6p ET on Bloomberg’s iHeartRadio or Mondays at 8p ET on WROM Radio Detroit.

The fall of the Berlin Wall, coming so suddenly as it did, is an excellent lesson that as heavy as the hand of tyranny might seem to be in any particular time and place, there is always hope as long as people of goodwill continue fighting for freedom.