"Normal" Places We Go

Berlin Section # 4 – Only The Dead Have Seen The End Of War

It was interesting to see Hitler’s World War II bunker, where he spent his final days, when I knew that I would be seeing the bunker where he spent his front-line service in World War I only four days in the future.  Below is a picture of the parking lot under which Hitler’s bunker lies.

There is nothing to indicate the location other than a modest sign nearby.  If you want to visit the site yourself, make sure you know where it is before you head out because the Germans in the area will be very reluctant to tell you where it is.  There have been several attempts to destroy the bunker complex, but it is massive and with reinforced concrete walls that are 12 feet thick, this is a task that is easier contemplated than accomplished.

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This is how the same site looked back in 1947:

The site of Hitler's bunker in Berlin pictured in 1947

The neighborhood still bears many of the scars of war:

Many of the surviving buildings in the area look like this one – covered with shrapnel and bullet damage.

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Or like these buildings – derelict and abandoned.

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Abandoned bunkers are still widespread throughout the area.

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Nearby are the grounds of the former Gestapo torture chambers – uncovered as part of the Topography of Terror.

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Some pictures on the site demonstrate the extremes of war:

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Mass shooting by members of an Einsatzgruppe D (special mobile unit) of the Security Police – 1942

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Estimates are that between 1941 and 1945 the Einsatzgruppen and the SS killed more than 1.3 million people in open-air shootings.

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Forced to dig their own graves and then executed…

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Hanged Soviet partisans – 1942

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Amusingly, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe is less than a block from where Hitler’s World War II bunker was located.  How would Hitler feel about having a Jewish memorial right next to his old bunker?

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3 thoughts on “Berlin Section # 4 – Only The Dead Have Seen The End Of War

  1. Saw these in April 08 . the Bunker is commemorated as it should be ,TOTALLY NONDESCRIPT. The Jewish memorial gave us the impression of all the luggage that the Jews left behind , “SO MOVING” We were glad that remnants of The Wall were left and the line of paving cobbles showing the its position was great. Credit to those who restored the buildings in Berlin , a sterling effort.

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