In the eastern part of Berlin stands this impressive socialist realist monument to the Soviet war dead – specifically to the 20,000 Soviet soldiers killed in the Battle for Berlin in 1945. It’s also a cemetery – five thousand are interred there.
The Soviets built three monuments in Berlin after the war, and this is the largest. Stone from Hitler’s demolished Reich Chancellery was used in its construction. The central plaza is flanked by stone sarcophagi, decorated with friezes and quotes (in Russian and German) from Stalin. At one end is a 12 meter statue of a heroic soldier holding a child and breaking a swastika, and at the other is a figure representing the motherland, grieving her fallen sons. It’s a powerful and fascinating place. Off the beaten track, but worth going.
I had been there before, years ago, and was fascinated by a history told differently than what I’d heard before. These photos were made last October, and this time the day I went was a bit rainy, which seemed to suit the place.
photos made using either my old homebrew 6×12 camera (seen above) or a shiny new NOPO 120.