From Aug. 13, 1961 through Nov. 9, 1989, a wall of concrete and barbed wire isolated West Berlin from East Berlin and the rest of East Germany. East German leader Walter Ulbricht told his people the wall would keep out West German spies -- but the true intent was to keep East Germans from leaving for freedom and opportunity in the West.

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The berlin wall was a barrier constructed by the German democratic republic starting on 13 august 1961 that completely cut off the west berlin from surrounding east germany and from east berlin.
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