Bits of Berlin Wall make global art, memory

Germany bans American

Germany bans American "soldiers" at historic Berlin Wall crossing

German authorities have banned actors from posing as American GIs at Checkpoint Charlie, the historic USA -controlled border crossing between communist East and West Berlin.

According to The BBC, German authorities say that the almost 20-year practice has exploited tourists when actors aggressively demand money for posing in photos.

For almost two decades a group of performers called the "Dance Factory" have posed in border guard uniforms offering tourists fake passport stamps and snapshots with "border officials".

The actors are part of a company known as Dance Factory.

Luszeit claims BILD and other German tabloids got the story wrong, and that the real reason for the performance licenses being revoked was a technicality. He also was insistent that the performers do not harass tourists and only held up signs asking for donations.

The Berlin Wall separated East from West Berlin from 1961 to 1989. The site quickly became a hot-spot for tourists from all over the world, with vendors selling Red Army souvenirs and pieces of the wall itself.

However, many Berliners are upset about what they see as the "Disneyfication" of the historical spot.

In the years since German unification in 1990, it has turned into a sort of "Disneyland" of history, with vendors selling fake Red Army fur hats and gas masks and people dressed in U.S. military uniforms charging tourists for snapshots.

Saturday, November 9, marks the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.

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