We were plunged into the torrid turmoil of the Heath years
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Saturday 04 July 2009
Saturday 27 June 2009
Saturday 30 May 2009
Thursday 28 May 2009
Wednesday 20 May 2009
They were icons of the Cold War: the Brandenburg Gate symbolised the division of Berlin and Checkpoint Charlie was the East-West crossing of spy novel fame, where heavily armed Allied soldiers and Communist border guards confronted each other.
Sunday 17 May 2009
Wednesday 15 April 2009
Thursday 19 March 2009
Albrecht Schönherr helped to ensure that no blood was spilled during the struggles which led to German reunification in 1990. He was the longest-serving chairman, from 1969 to 1981, of the Kirchenbund der DDR (the Federation of Evangelical Churches in the German Democratic Republic), which he had been instrumental in creating.
Monday 16 March 2009
Wednesday 18 February 2009
People who live in past houses shouldn’t sow stones: that seems to be the moral of Marius von Mayenburg’s ridiculously short one-hour play that kicks off a German season in Sloane Square and sends you scurrying to the programme text on the way home to make sure you know what happened.
Saturday 07 February 2009
Sunday 25 January 2009
When she describes sniffer dogs hassling innocent travellers at Tube stations, I have to take Amber Marks's experiences at face value as I've never actually seen an example of this myself. The newspaper stories she cites, about dogs being used in schools to sniff out drugs, for example, seem the kind of silly stories that surface every so often but then fizzle out without ever actually coming to anything, so they don't help her case much either. What does underpin her book, though, is a genuine sense that we're all coming under increasing surveillance, all the time, without even realising it – and not for the reasons we're being given, either.
Saturday 24 January 2009
A dark, despairing nation whose weary inhabitants cowered beneath the worn-out regime that ruled them so ineptly. So much for Thatcher's Britain in 1989; in East Germany life was even worse.
Saturday 25 October 2008
Monday 25 August 2008
Wolfgang Vogel lurked in and out of the shadows of Cold War Germany. He was known to many prominent figures but not to the general public. As personal emissary of the East German leader Erich Honecker, he helped to facilitate East-West prisoner exchanges and the re-location of thousands of East Germans to the West. He was not, however, a philanthropist. His services did not come cheap, and he became a wealthy man through his Cold War exploits.
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