Chicago Tribune

Commentary: The Berlin Wall fell in a dramatic wave of hope, openness and US support 30 years ago. Now everything is different

Thirty years ago, the wall dividing Berlin and Europe came tumbling down, inaugurating a period of dizzying change and unprecedented opportunity. Within months, Germany was reunited, Soviet dominance of Central and Eastern Europe collapsed and Soviet communism and the USSR itself disintegrated. The Cold War, which had split Europe for more than four decades, had ended.

In its stead, a far more optimistic and hopeful future beckoned. A continent torn asunder by two bloody world wars and frozen into two competing

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