Thursday, May 7, 2009

The End of Election Fraud

Twenty years ago today was the last election under the old GDR regime, municipal elections throughout the country, and to the right you can see a campaign poster used by the "national front" as only party alliance permitted on the ballots. Voters only had the possibility of crossing out names or otherwise making the ballot invalid, as they were required to go to the polls. Manipulation of the results was proven by civil observers who had managed to monitor the counting under a provision of GDR law and then file charges of election fraud against those responsible. This was a major step by the civil rights protesters in the GDR and led to protests on the 7th of each following month to demand free elections and civil rights for citizens of the GDR.

Today, an open air exhibition was opened on Alexanderplatz to commemorate those ongoing demonstrations held there and in many other towns and cities of the GDR until the Wall finally fell on November 9. This is a link to the English version of the website on that peaceful revolution culminating in the fall of the Wall. And also a press shot of one of the demonstrations at Alexanderplatz, now simulated with posters and transparencies on poles at the very location where they occurred twenty years ago.

It was curated and organized by the organization responsible for the archives of the GDR opposition groups, the Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft e.V, whose website also gives incredible insights into what happened.
Here, as well, a link to the German Federal Commissioner for the archives, reconstitution, public access, and study of the documents of the GDR Stasi, the secret police of the GDR. It is very enlightening to recall how a state attempted to spy on its own citizens, what nonsense they collected, and how many lives they destroyed by sowing suspicion, fomenting envy, and promoting fear. No one could be sure whether their friends were actually spies or not.


  1. great link!

    we can always count on you for thought provoking content

  2. Thanks! I try my best, all in an attempt to shed light where darkness has encroached or attempts to do so...