Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft/Frank Ebert

Potsdamer Straße

The 1989 revolution toppling the communist dictatorship in the GDR (German Democratic Republic) would not have been feasible without the West German media, which played a significant role. Several editorial offices such as the Tagesspiegel and the SPIEGEL were in this area. 

The West Berlin private radio station Radio 100 started broadcasting at Potsdamer Straße 131 in 1987. The monthly programme Radio Glasnost aired important news for the GDR population, causing a sensation. Radio Glasnost was a produced by a cross-border team of West Berlin journalists, expatriated civil rights activists and members of the East German opposition movement. 

In spite of the threat of prison sentences, the opposition groups wrote scripts and made recordings on tapes, which were smuggled to West Berlin across the border. The editorial office in West Berlin produced the programmes. 29 programmes were broadcast right up until November 1989. The Stasi tried to prevent the radio reception in the GDR by means of jamming transmitters – however, with little success. 

Radio Glasnost helped to break the ruling SED’s (Socialist Unity Party) information monopoly in the GDR and to inform listeners about the actual situation. The broadcasts also served as a public platform for East German opposition groups to air their criticism of the dictatorship, as well as their own ideas and goals. 

The private radio station Radio 100 was based at 131 Potsdamer Strasse from 1987 to 1991.
Quelle: Radio 100
The East German secret service recorded exactly where Radio Glasnost could be heard in the GDR.
Quelle: BStU
The correspondent of the West German news magazine Der Spiegel, Ulrich Schwarz, with his secretary Gisela Krüger in the East Berlin editorial office, 24 November 1976. His articles took a critical look behind the facade of the GDR regime. Up to 1989 Schwarz was an important contact to the West for the East German opposition.
Quelle: Archiv Bundesstiftung Aufarbeitung, Bestand Klaus Mehner, Nr. 76_1124_WIF_Medien_07
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