Overview[ edit ] Underground combines interviews with and archival footage of the Weathermen to provide a picture of this group, their opinions on American society, and their hopes for the future. The filmmakers use the material from their interactions with the Weathermen Bill AyersKathy BoudinBernardine DohrnJeff Jones and Cathy Wilkerson to structure its exploration of the formation and direction of the group.
Although Reagan initially took a hard-line stance, his personal contacts with Gorbachev, a surprisingly articulate and personable reformer, breathed new life into U.
And Gorbachev himself, seeing the Soviet economy heading for collapse, decided to institute dramatic, liberalizing reforms.
In doing so, he opened a window of opportunity, which protesters all over Central and Eastern Europe soon widened. Aerial photo of the Bornholmer Street border crossing, circa In this photo, the West is at the top of the image, just over the bridge.
The checkpoint itself is the large, walled area in the center of the photo and includes a number of barriers, lights, service buildings and, at left, numbered lanes for processing vehicles. Image courtesy of the author The leaders of East Germany bucked the trend, however. They were horrified at what Gorbachev was doing and took dramatic steps to try to prevent similar reforms from coming to their half-country.
By latethey had sealed the armed borders of East Germany entirely in an effort to prevent their population from fleeing wholesale to the West. Rather than helping to quiet protests, this sealing turned the entire country into a pressure cooker, with massive demonstrations—in Berlin, Leipzig, Dresden and elsewhere—bringing life to a standstill.
The regime launched a belated effort at damage control. At a hastily called press conference on November 9,Communist party leaders tried to reduce tensions by making it sound as if travel restrictions would soon be liberalized—when in reality travel would remain subject to all manner of fine print.
But the official announcing the liberalization botched the messaging so badly that it sounded—unbelievably—as if the ruling regime might just have opened the Wall, effective immediately.
Having seen the press conference on TV, thousands of East Germans flocked to border crossings to see if they could, in fact, pass to the West.
Stunned border guards had no idea why they were being inundated, and no orders on how to handle the crowds. Over the next two and a half decades, he ascended to the rank of lieutenant colonel and deputy head of the passport-control unit.
He was essentially a lower-tier record keeper, one of the deputies who reported to more senior Stasi officers. To conceal his identity, he and his colleagues wore uniforms identical to those of the ordinary border guards. But all who worked at the border crossing knew that the official overseeing the passport-control unit on any given day was the senior Stasi officer on duty—and therefore the man in charge.
He had reported for duty at 8: Eating dinner in one of the Bornholmer control buildings at about 7: Fall of the Berlin Wall.
He kept calling Ziegenhorn, trying to get some kind of instructions on how to deal with the chaotic situation, but Ziegenhorn replied every time that it was business as usual.
For close to two hours he had been dealing with an unprecedented and threatening situation. He had received no substantive replies to his urgent, repeated requests for guidance.Initially formed as a splinter group which believed that peaceful protests were ineffective, the Weathermen were widely criticized for their use .
First came the botched press conference. Then the actions of an angry, tired secret police officer who thought he had nothing to lose. Soviet reaction wasn't good. But MBS botched the Yemen operation from the start. It was dubbed “Decisive Storm” when it began in , and was supposed to last only a few weeks, but the war continues to this day.
Botched Speech Sent the Entire Country into Revolt On the 21st December , in an effort to disrupt the growing unrest in the country after the Timișoara uprising, Ceaușescu gave a speech from Palace Square, Bucharest.
Far from instigating the brutality, she argues, Weatherman was responding to it in kind. Somewhere in there, there's a germ of a sound position. If the United States were actually a tyranny, for example, then armed rebellion could be justified. Nov 02, · A new book by Arthur Eckstein considers the legacy of the Weathermen and how the organization shaped the s and what came after The Weather Underground Organization was the most famous.