Everything You Never Knew You Wanted to Know About Berlin


Sky Over Berlin (April, 1945)


As the allied Polish and the Red Armies are marching towards Berlin from the north and the east of the city, occupying Frohnau, Niederschönhausen and Lichtenberg, and as the very same armies enter the concentration camp of Sachsenausen outside Oranienburg to face an unspeakable picture of human suffering and human cruelty towards their own species, Dr. Joseph Goebbels, the State Secretary for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda is sitting in Berlin-Mitte at the Spielhaus am Gendermenmarkt, undisturbed by the artillery fire roaring outside, listening to Puccini´s Tosca. The story of love, death and betrayal.

Outside the Schlacht um Berlin has just began. By May, 2nd some 125,000 more civilians will die in the city. Goebbels and his wife Magda will commit suicide. They will take all of their six young children with them.


  1. berlioz1935
    Apr 22, 2012

    Day 1 Saturday 21. April 1945

    Since 2.0 pm today, Berlin is under siege !

    A peculiar, faint feeling overcomes us all when we realise that our Reich’s Capital – our Berlin – is about to face a great and all deciding ordeal. Victory or downfall ! Life or death ! For better or worse ! What will the end bring?

    This is the beginning in the diary of my late mother for the same day. She wrote it for the next seven days till the Russians arrived in our street. There is nothing of what the women suffered. She must have had heard terrible stories.

    The world, inhabited by us human beings, is a complex place, but it was made more like Hell by the Nazis. There is no doubt about that. We still have politicians like that today everywhere. When they open their mouths and spill out the hate you can hear and smell the destruction that is lurking. We need Democracy and an open society to keep those people in check. We can never destroy them unless we become like them.

    On the first spring days of 1945, just before Berlin was engulfed in the final assault by the Red Army, beautiful Ukrainian young woman, in their national dresses strolled on Sundays on the Kreuzberg and Viktoria Park. They must have been working somewhere in Berlin. I don’t dare speculate on their fate after the Red Army entered Berlin. This a chapter of the war one hears nothing about.

    I met many Ukrainians here in Australia and they all hated the Russians. One was even fighting in Berlin with an anti-aircraft unit on the Zoobunker.

  2. Merton Reynolds
    Feb 12, 2015

    I am writing a book regarding my wife’s childhood in Berlin, Neukoelln, where she lived with her grandmother very near a cemetery and a runway at Tempelhof. She lived through some terrible times of fear, hunger, and deprivation. I am nearly finished with the book and hope to have it published, but before I do, I need to acquire some photos of Berlin of 1945, photos for which I would not be violating copyright by publishing them. I am open to any suggestions.

    • notmsparker
      Feb 16, 2015

      I will be very happy to provide you with “copyright-free” images.Please, let me know at what E-mail address I can send the link. Good luck with your book! I think it is tremendously important that such first-hand experience records are made publicly accessible.

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