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tv   Check-in  Deutsche Welle  July 14, 2019 9:02am-9:31am CEST

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i've always wanted to show you around my hometown and speak a small city in the state of hessen in the heart of germany. there are more than 1000 have to merge houses here. and if you're lucky you'll hear the bells ringing at the marketplace. when i was born and spiegel was located on the fringe of the german federal republic germany's and our border ran only a few kilometers from here it separated has and to lincoln and germany and all of
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europe for that matter and to east and west but in 1909 the wall came down in berlin and the border between east germany and the federal republic was opened for the past 30 years no bigot has been at the heart of germany. today i want to take you on a little tour along the border between hassett and wellness and places that still bear witness to the cold war division of germany and that's a victim's animals find out what has changed since reunification turning a once heavily fortified death strip and so unattractive tourist destination. we'll visit a small town torn apart in the cold war. we'll check out bob castle one of the symbols of german reunification. and globetrotters steve painter sends his regards. from durban and south africa.
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i'm heading south all the way along the border between hess and tooling and until i reach the. 3rd cities and towns meadows and feels quite unimaginable that this region was once marred by the cold war and cut into by the iron curtain i want to find out what things were like back in the day and head over to point alpha a former u.s. observation post at the interim and border. takes me around the premises 1st he shows me the different stages of the east german border fencing. starting in 1952 the old boundary stones were replaced with barbed wire. but those trying to flee could easily cut it when no border guards were in sight so the east german leadership made escaping more and more dangerous.
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we're in the middle of a minefield that dates back to the 1960 s. when they began building the berlin wall on august 13th 1961 the inner german border was secured through military means and 1.3 to 1400000 land mines were planted. the death strip whoever managed to pass it unscathed was often brought to a halt at the last border fence. it would have been very difficult to climb the fence practically impossible to pull yourself up by your fingertips. up until 1900 there were also s.m. seventy's here anti-personnel mines which would detonate if anyone tried to climb up. they were called automatic firing devices and would have fired shrapnel that anyone trying to escape had. this was the border patrol road in the former east.
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only 50 meters across the border a u.s. army watch tower it was part of observation post alpha 40 u.s. soldiers were stationed here they all belong to the reno in black horse regiment a demanding task at the frontline of a conflict that had the whole world holding its breath news that quickly given the black horse regiment was a very strong unit of its own combat helicopters armored infantry and artillery the best luck in the assumption was that if war broke out the soviets would advance and this would be one of the 1st sights of a 3rd world war helped with and could invade peace and go to. every accidental movement could have had devastating consequences tens were only allowed to drive up to this red line a rule established by the americans and meant to avoid provocation that could have cost the soviet leadership to snap. nowadays point out tells the tale of germany seemingly distant but very recent history groups of schoolchildren come to learn
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but also veterans who served here and many people from around the world interested in germany's peaceful reunification by the way this watch tower was only built in 1984 back then nobody thought that 5 years later the cold war and the iron curtain would be history until not too long ago the region we're in right now the wound was full of military infrastructure on both sides of the border today the low mountain range as a protective bias fair reserve and still somewhat of an insider tip for travelers for hiking biking or just taking a little time up. the one is a low mountain range in the middle of germany often called the land of open spaces it ranges from the state of turning into hassen and the various.
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there are some larger cities on the outskirts for example mine again in the east which for a long time was the capital of the duchy of sox a mine again. for the gross city of boulder in the west. and right in the middle is the vasa cookbook the highest peak of the one at 950 meters. this is the heart of gliding in germany because of the thermals. the 1st attempts at gliding took place before the 1st world war while the 1st competitions were organized in 1920. a sailplane is designed to write the air currents without an engine so that it can just glide through space.
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back when germany was still divided sailplanes from hessen in the west sometimes found themselves gliding towards and even over the border just 15 kilometers from the boss a cookbook. some pilots were even arrested and only released weeks later after paying a hefty fine in torture marks. the planes were confiscated. today these gliders and paragliders have the same ideal thermal lift conditions but there's no border that they have to mind. so they can glide freely in the on land of the open spaces. little remains of the iron curtain. only the border patrol road still meanders
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through germany i can start to walk on it on the shores of the baltic sea and would end up in hope and bavaria the 1400 kilometers of exclusion zone have turned into a greenbelt a protected area for flora and fauna. as one of the many environmental activists in east and west that demand the german greenbelt not be used for construction or agricultural purposes he wants it to be fully returned to nature roots that were close to the book on the taft which is now flowing again and its own bed. before the wall came down this stream was part of a no go zone on the eastern side of the patrol road set up to prevent escapes between 2 when the. after the wall fell the river bed was recalled invaded by environmentalists and hassen was that enough of you who've heard this in. india.
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that now there are wetlands for plants and animals for and this is a very valuable in the nuclear disaster and you don't want something you don't have a nap. surprisingly political and military hostility were fertile ground for endangered species. and regularly takes visitors around the greenbelt to introduce them to the biodiversity of the region. i went on a really fun watch with some biology students from all snuffed look. we went to the also which is known for its orchids the country. instead of the usual half hour the walk took 2 and a half because the biology students kept stopping at every blade of grass. when seeing that form. the side so it's not just the locals on the green belt has turned
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into an attractive tourist destination this clean up on the greenbelt will never be a tourist trap thank god. it's not done but it's very important that those who are interested should be able to come here. this will always be a small select group there won't be any mass tourism. but we're noticing more and more people coming from a far more fun clothes on and finally on. my next stop is for one of the oldest towns in tooling and. its existence was 1st documented in the year 814. almost as old this bridge that crosses the vet of river on the other side lies phillips only a stone's throw away but unreachable when germany was divided ellie's up at long
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last born and raised and fought tells me how this bridge when from connecting people to separating them from lack during a cold war was located in the exclusion zone what was daily life like. for when we drove in and drove out we had to show a special stamp on our idea. no one else was allowed in on friends couldn't visit us. we were allowed to request a visitor's permit from the police for very close relatives 6 we wouldn't know for 6 weeks whether we'd get permission or not. because. in that battle then this place looked very different and you tell us about this bridge and the role it played. yeah the. bridge was a very important artery cause of 4 kids from the holy roman empire inside it was on a very regular from like 6 to frankfurt or. we liked it very much when you leave
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and we were able to cross it until 1952 and a man now you know or my aunt lived in the house on the border of my mentality and then that ended here your fear was that there were more and more fences. first a wire mesh fence. then a watch tower was built on the great. and then everything was closed off and there was nothing around this because it was a no man's land really i mean months lot and i know what to people trying to flee across the valley i'm not really. worse very often my brother escaped in 1962 he was a student in fly back and he and his friends played jazz and that got them into trouble. so or they swam across in august 1960 to.
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try and safety did they succeed as they made a lot of them and no member of 989 the border opened what was that like your family was reunited so was germany euphoria must have been immense i suppose and. it's the best thing to have happened to us at the end of the 20th century. it's a feeling that you don't experience very often come on in the us. you can relive this moment in fact local history museum. and amateur filmmaker captured the scene as the west started to tear down the border wall the famous berlin wall came down on november 9th 1909 only 3 days after the border between fatah and phillips all followed. oh. god.
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since then the old bridge has returned to its original function connecting and philip stop. trying to take a little tour of the lives tom the small town is home to a true gem a castle dating back to the 17th century and surrounded by a lush park. setting out to explore the world wasn't really an option for the citizens of communist east germany people in fox couldn't even visit their neighbors here in philip's top nowadays things are much easier to get our globe trotters steve hand it all he needs is a ticket a backpack and a sense of adventure this time we caught up with him and durban south africa 2nd biggest city.
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and we start things over in the sunny city of devon i'm here with my little boy guides tell me who god is around for today some sun i could go i'm going to be legal welcome to the city of durban wasn't enough don we're going to take up with what i did on a little book sure there'd be. something. because rumah city is located on the east coast and has a population of about 3 and a half 1000000 in the metropolitan area durban is famous for being the busiest port in the country it's also seen as one of the major centers of to resign because of the city's warm subtropical climate and extensive teaches if. it. please. write me today and most especially the stadium which was built for the world cup in 2010 we're here to do the big rush the world's tallest when i go.
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to. sleep really do what you. know is it saves time and it was scary. it's the suspects gets to be back. stay on the route. to the next morning we hit the road and drug about 3 hours north east. so we just drove away and what we see just right after we entered some sea process. i guess. our base inside the park was the hilltop can't which overlooks the reserve. first team dr snuffing him right after. i read it because he said right off get
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this right that's what. the update on follows the path is the oldest proclaimed nature reserve in africa the consists of 960 square kilometers of hilly topography and is known for its rich wildlife and conservation efforts here teach the. the big 5 game animals can be found in just a short amount of time also we were able to see 4 out of the big 5 for now 1st game drives. and we are back at the chemical resort in the pool which is the perfect way finish this trip through the region of western to not stop . but. back in germany i'm on my way to the protests mining area stretching out on both sides of the back and hesson as well as tooling up between
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194-5989 it was divided after reunification east and west german potage industries merged the privatisation led to the closure of unsafe or inefficient mines and the loss of many jobs in the former east the mine in macas was turned into a visitor's attraction. polish google takes me on a tour of the huge underground labyrinth. even the ride is quite an adventure. 140 square kilometers of winding tunnels the nazis believed this to be the perfect hiding spot in april of 1945 u.s. soldiers couldn't believe their eyes when they came upon this room thousands of boxes and bags filled with cash diamonds and gold paintings by rembrandt goriot do
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that and many others in anticipating the downfall of the 3rd reich the nazis hid a lot of their gold and currency reserves and macca us. from by some means only one dimensions are we talking about here that hold i don't mind i knew you were right the markets well some different global climate if you count em. we think it comes to 3000000000 writes mark in a bank notes alone. there was so much money stored here that there was a shortage of cash in berlin. one of the most spectacular finds never t.v. this is of course a replica the original is back in berlin's pergamon museum if all of this is an adventure is enough for you you can also explore the labyrinth by mountain bike but there are only a limited amount of spots and dates so you should sign up ahead of time in any case there's plenty to see down here. like
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this grotto full of sparkling salt crystals. because it was on board it's something special or unique in the world as far as we know the salt crystals of this size with a metre long edge aren't found anywhere else except at america. and in the right light it's twice as beautiful. the. time now for our weekly female our viewer jeff messmate sent us a video of his trip to the island of later on the philippines there he went scuba diving and that's an amazing footage of the pacific colorful underwater world.
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book castle in. a symbol of german reunification. and 2 is located only a couple of kilometers from the inner german border germany is arguably a country of many councils so why did the baath book play such a crucial role in german history i meeting with how to find out stuff. for many years he's been showing visitors through the book into the birthplace of the modern german language 500 years ago monte lucia translated the bible into
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german in this very room until then there have been countless dialects has bible created a unified german language car in the language that german speak today emerged in this room with martin luther. good to start here hundreds of years later he said we became of people a nation because of martin luther that's how we. and a common language you would find that in minds and. then other milestone in german history took place in the book's banquet hall in $817.00 students and fraternities hailing from small states and principalities got together and this room. here and they demand that the founding of a unifying german nation with democratic civil rights. under the 1st the year in a fraternity germany's 1st fraternity invited people to the festival. and the
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fraternity colors were black red and gold black in the middle red and then a modest gold on the rim of the flag and in the middle and old french. the flag became the symbol of german democracy black red and gold blue over the book for the 1st time. today the buck book is once again a castle for all germans well they still remembers the 1st months after the border was open west germans were finally able to cross into the east without needing a visa or passport and for many the baht book was the 1st place to visit. just that one year more than 700000 people came. and they waited in line for hours. well they were amazed because the vault book wasn't such a good state and that money had been invested over decades we all prejudices flew out the window before they solve the gold cross on the tower and they knew they were home here into the homes of.
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even the hardest of frontiers are essentially artificial concepts and because they're artificial they can be challenged by the people and eventually taken down it's been 30 years since the fall of the iron curtain and the reopening of the inner german border 3 decades that have blurred the lines between east and west and still we mustn't forget about the past which is why it's so important to have places that remind us of how difficult and different things used to be around these parts thanks for joining me that's it for this week i'll see you next time somewhere in germany.
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