However, since 1958 the SED (the Socialist Unity Party of Germany) had long been scheming a plan, code named Operation Chinese Wall, which would completely seal off of West Berlin from the GDR and would prevent a collapse of the socialist rule in East Germany.
When this plan actually became a reality on the night of August 12th, 1961, Winston Churchill's infamous expression of an Iron Curtain had truly materialized right in the heart of Berlin.
The "Moskau-Paris-Express" to freedom.
An escape from East to West by Karl-Heinz Richter
Karl-Heinz Richter is an official tour guide in The Memorial
Berlin-Hohenschönhausen and frequently holds public lectures on the
subject of political persecution.
Please contact us per email for school lecture appointments and further
January 1964 a group of young East Berliners plan a risky escape to West
One after the other, they escape by jumping on the daily
Moscow-Paris Express train departing from the Friedrichstrasse station.
The Stasi discover the secret spot after one of the young men,
Karl-Heinz Richter, falls off the train and severely injures himself. He
is arrested and sent to a Stasi prison.
From this first-hand account, Karl-Heinz Richter takes us through his
story about yearning to flee the GDR, his desolate incarceration and the
relentless Stasi interrogations. Through the eyes of a seventeen year
old we see how freedom cannot be walled in and how life and love triumph