Pennant with the flag of the DDR.
The DDR was a state that existed from 1949 to 1990, when the eastern portion of Germany was part of the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. Commonly described as a communist state, it described itself as a socialist workers and peasants’ state.
After WWII the Soviet zone surrounded West Berlin but did not include it; as a result, West Berlin remained outside the jurisdiction of the DDR.
Soviet forces remained in the country throughout the Cold War. Until 1989. The Berlin Wall was a guarded concrete barrier that physically and ideologically divided Berlin from 1961 to 1989. Construction of the Wall was commenced by the DDR on 13 August 1961. The Wall cut off (by land) West Berlin from surrounding East Germany, including East Berlin. The barrier included guard towers placed along large concrete walls, accompanied by a wide area (later known as the “death strip”) that contained anti-vehicle trenches, “fakir beds” and other defenses. The Eastern Bloc portrayed the Wall as protecting its population from fascist elements conspiring to prevent the “will of the people” in building a socialist state in East Germany.