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Southwest of the Reichstag Building on Strasse des 17 June
Erected immediately at the end of World War II in the first few months after the German surrender and dedicated on November 11, 1945, Soviet builders used materials from what had been Hitler’s Reich Chancellory building. The monument with the very large sculpture of a Soviet soldier is dedicated to the 20,000 Soviet soldiers who lost their lives in the fighting for Berlin. Up until the end of the German Democratic Republic (GDR or East Germany) this site held a special status and was guarded 24/7 by Soviet soldiers although it was situated on the West Berlin side of the Berlin Wall. The large colonnade feature of the memorial is inscribed with the names of Soviet Army units that took part in the battle for the city as well as individual names. Two stone sarcophagi bear the names of important Soviet officers who were killed in the heavy fighting between April and May 1945. In the garden behind the memorial lie 2500 Soviet soldiers in unmarked graves. The 26 foot tall bronze Soviet soldier towers over the site and can be seen from quite a distance; he carried his gun slung over his soldier to symbolize the war was over and with this left hand points towards his fallen comrades who lie at the base in front of the memorial.

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