Current Events in the Rear-View Mirror

Heinrich Böll’s 100th Birthday (* December 21, 1917)

Born in Cologne on December 21, 1917 the author Heinrich Böll was a bold champion for peace and tolerance who left his mark on German postwar literature. He draws from his own experiences to write about the abyss of national socialism, war and… mehr…
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End of the Auschwitz Trial in Krakow (December 22, 1947)

The first big trial against the staff of the concentration and extermination camps in Auschwitz-Birkenau begins in November of 1947. Among the 40 defendants are Arthur Liebehenschel, who was the temporary commander of the main camp, Maria Mandl,… mehr…
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King Constantine II of Greece Flees to Italy (December 14, 1967)

After years of political turbulences Constantine II of Greece and his wife Anne-Marie flee to Italy on December 14, 1967. He had acceded to the throne only three years earlier, at the age of 24. The young monarch quickly clashed with the… mehr…
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The First Launch of Saturn V (November 9, 1967)

When Saturn V lifts off from earth from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on November 9, 1967 for the first time, it rattles windows miles away. The rocket, which was supposed to take the Apollo program to the moon, was the biggest and strongest… mehr…
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100th Anniversary of Indira Gandhi’s Birth (* 19. November 1917)

While some view her as the “mother of India,” others consider her an ice-cold power politician and dictator: Indira Gandhi, who governed the world’s largest democracy for a total of 16 years. As the daughter of Jawaharlal Nehru, who served as… mehr…
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100 Year Anniversary of the October Revolution (November 7th/8th, 1917)

On November 7th—or October 5th, according to the Julian calendar, which was enforced at the time—a political coup d’état begins in Russia. Its movers and shakers glorify it as the „great socialist October revolution.“ History books describe it as… mehr…
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60 Years of Sputnik (October 4, 1957)

On October 4, 1957 the USSR creates an international sensation by launching the first artificial earth satellite into the orbit. With an enormous speed of eight km per second the 60 cm small „Sputnik“—Russian for fellow traveler—orbits the blue… mehr…
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Günter Grass 90th Birthday (* Oct 16, 1927 – April 13, 2015)

He is a literary superstar and one of the most important postwar novelists. A representative of “magic realism” his figurative language and narrative style exert great influence on writers such as John Irving and Salman Rushdie. Before Grass turns… mehr…
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Contergan (Thalomide) Hits the Market (October 1, 1957)

Contergan (German trade name for thalomide) was hyped as a miracle drug when drug company Grünenthal begins selling it: a sedative and sleeping pill without any side effects, even pregnant women can take it to counteract the effects of morning… mehr…
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50th Anniversary of the European Space Operations Centre in Darmstadt (Sept 8, 1967)

On September 8, 2017 the European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt celebrates its 50th anniversary. ESOC is in charge of overseeing the operation of all satellites of the European Space Agency (ESA). For this purpose it maintains a global… mehr…
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Opening of the Berlin Congress Center (Sept. 18, 1957)

On September 19, 1957 the US-American government presents the city of Berlin with the congress center, which had been built within just one year. The building is the USA’s contribution to the international building exhibition INTERBAU in 1957. Part… mehr…
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Erich Honecker Visits the Federal Republic of Germany (Sept. 7-11, 1987)

On September 7, 1987 Erich Honecker arrives in the Federal Republic for a visit. It is the first and last time that a head of state from the GDR would visit the other part of Germany. Though officially a „working visit“ Honecker is still received… mehr…
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