KREUZBERGED BERLIN

Everything You Never Knew You Wanted to Know About Berlin

TODAY IN BERLIN: THE END

german-women-killed-herself-berlin-april-may-1945 (1)

According to the booklet “Berlin in Zahlen” published in 1949 the number of suicides committed in Berlin in late April and early May 1945, when the Soviet Army entered the city, amounted to 7,057.

The unofficial number, lowered by the fact that hardly anyone had time or opportunity to count the victims and further reduced by intentional misinformation (suicide was not only a sin but also a clear reason for a life insurance company to refuse issuing the payment), was much bigger.

Magda Goebbels and her husband were not the only parents to kill their own children. However, most of the mothers and fathers did so not to spare them the life without the Nazi world and the “Führer” (the reason Magda Goebbels named in the last letter to her older son, Harald Quandt, delivered by Hanna Reitsch after she left the city on April 28th) but because they feared they would be murdered by the winners from the East anyway.

Many of those who chose to kill themselves died completely alone. Like the woman found lying surrounded by her few belongings at Tempelhofer Ufer in Berlin-Kreuzberg.

On April 30th the man who unleashed the dogs of war went the same way. The war itself was almost over but those dogs were not done biting yet.

One comment on “TODAY IN BERLIN: THE END

  1. bergmannstrasse
    May 20, 2015

    Ich hab mir das Foto schon zu Studienzeiten angesehen und bin mir über die Deutung der Szene nicht schlüssig. Vielleicht kam da ein Fluchtversuch zum Ende – denn wieso sollten vor allem Habseligkeiten mitgenommen werden, wenn die Idee zur Tat schon vorher bestand. Für viele Aufnahmen dieser Zeit ist der historische Entstehungskontext nicht mehr einwandfrei überliefert. Leider.

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This entry was posted on April 30, 2015 by in Kreuzberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

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