Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Berlin's Lenin Statue Lost?

City of Berlin authorities have admitted that the giant statue of Lenin that once towered over Lenin Square (now known as United Nations Plaza) in Berlin's Friedrichshain district is lost. This came to light after museum curators requested it for an upcoming exhibition. The statue was torn down after German reunification, cut into 129 pieces and buried in a pit in Köpenick. According to city officials, the exact location of the statue is now unknown and would be too costly to find.  

The far left party, Die Linke, has suggested that the statue's mysterious disappearance is ideologically motivated. After all, for many it represents a time of repression. 

Today, Berlin has few reminders of its socialist past. There's a small statue of Karl Marx located just down the street from where the Lenin statue once stood. Of course, unlike Lenin, Marx was primarily an economic philosopher, not a ruthless dictator responsible for the deaths of thousands of dissidents.  

Personally, I think that monuments of our past, however repugnant, should be preserved and displayed. "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." (George Santayana).

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