Remembrance - The World Wars wasn’t the beginning and the end of German history. Germany’s past is omnipresent in every city. Unlike the United States that has a definite beginning date, 1776 and the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Germany has no starting date. One could mention the Visigoths, to the start of the Prussian Empire, to the fall f the Berlin Wall, to any of the civilizations which have conquered Numerous cities are tied to the World Wars as many had to be rebuilt since the destruction of WWII. Germany preserves this rich history in the buildings, the culture, and the people who embrace all different sects of the government. Germany celebrates it’s rich history in the numerous castles which have been built, with strict ordinance codes to not alter the buildings far beyond their original state. Walking through any of the historical cities and you can see the pride Germans have in the cities like Heidelberg, Schwäbish, and Geisa. Beyond celebrating the past, the elephant in the room for all Germans is the dark age of World War II, the Holocaust, and the Cold War. Through the memorials, preservation of various landmarks which represent the location of the atrocities like Buchenwald Memorial and Pointe Alpha Memorial, and the outlawing of Nazi symbolism, Germany is making steps to not only move forward, but also acknowledge the past.
Rebirth - two different eras of modern Germany, before and after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of the Cold War. These dark days loom loud over the people and cities of Germany, yet aren’t the end of a story, rather the beginning of a new chapter. There now is a large portion of the German population born after the fall of the Berlin Wall. These dark times now only stories and words, not tangible memories. Germany has changed it’s policies and direction immensely in order to avoid the past. They have regulations on their ability to declare war, removed any Nazi ties, and have spent time and energy rebuilding the Eastern side of Germany. Germany now is a leading member of the European Union, a country far ahead of its time with environment protection, and the second leading country for immigration. Germany’s dark days are behind them as they continue to look towards the road ahead. They continue to not forget the road which they traveled to get them to where they are right now.
Beautiful buildings. - Every city and every building has some ties to the past whether the buildings are reflective of the Renaissance Era, the Prussian empire, or contemporary architecture, each building tells a story. A major period of time for all the buildings seems to be World War II. When visiting many buildings, one of the first facts I would come across was whether or not the building was destroyed during WWII or if it stayed in tact. Germany made a huge effort to restore many buildings to their original glory. Also, after the Cold War and Soviet Occupation, East Germany, From the small towns like Geisa, to the centuries old cities like Schwäbish and Heidelberg, to the bridging of historical Germany with the modern in cities like Leipzig and Berlin, Germany is home to a beautiful landscape.