Europe 1963: Berlin Wall

The coming of the 1960s saw the Cold War heating up, fueled by advances in missile technology. In 1961, another crisis hit Berlin when the communist East German government built a wall to stop its citizens fleeing to the west. The Berlin Wall would keep Germans divided for 28 years.

Main Events

16 Aug 1960 Independence of Cyprus

In 1959, during meetings at London and Zürich, the United Kingdom, Turkey, Greece, and the Cypriot community agreed to establish an independent, bi-national state in Cyprus. The three powers also guaranteed Cyprus’s territorial integrity and security, reserving the right to take action to restore its bi-national status. Independence went into effect on 16 August 1960, though the United Kingdom still retained sovereignty over military bases on the wikipedia

19 Jun 1961 Independence of Kuwait

In 1961 the British protectorate over the Sheikhdom of Kuwait ended. The Sheikhdom became independent as the State of Kuwait with former Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salim Al-Sabah as wikipedia

13 Aug 1961 Berlin Wall

Throughout the 1950s millions of East Germans had migrated into the west, especially through West Berlin, which was not officially part of West Germany and had an open border with the East. To stop this migration, the East German government began construction in 1961 of a heavily fortified wall surrounding West wikipedia

3 Jul 1962 Independence of Algeria

Following a UN resolution in favor of Algerian independence, the French government opened negotiations with the FLN. A ceasefire began in March 1962, followed by two referendums on independence. On 3 July, two days after the second referendum yielded overwhelming support for independence, France recognized the People’s Democratic Republic of wikipedia

14–28 Oct 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis

On 14 October 1962 the United States obtained photographs of Soviet ballistic missiles deployed in Cuba from one of their U-2 spy planes. Four days later, US President John F. Kennedy notified the nation and initiated a naval blockade of Cuba. This led to an 11-day confrontation between the US and the Soviet Union, ultimately resulting in the Soviets withdrawing their missiles from Cuba in return for a secret withdrawal of US missiles from wikipedia

26 Jun 1963 “Ich bin ein Berliner”

Following the construction of the Berlin Wall, US President John F. Kennedy visited West Berlin and reaffirmed American support for West wikipedia