KLAUS WOWEREIT INTERVIEW - Wednesday 21st June, 2006

You don't really think of Berlin and modern buildings and water, do you, but there's actually a lot of both. But a few days ago, across town in what used to be East Berlin, in his office in the Rathaus - the City Hall - I interviewed the Buergermeister of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit. The 51-year-old mayor is one of this country's most influential politicians, in fact as power goes, he's arguably the second or third most powerful politician after Angela Merkel, the new Chancellor-designate herself. Not only that, the left-leaning Social Democrat is gay and, as he puts it, that's OK. 


HEINTZE FAMILY INTERVIEW - Wednesday, 14th June, 2006

When the Berlin Wall, that divided Germany into east and west, came crashing down 16 years ago, it was replaced by a new era of hope. A few days ago in Berlin, I met three generations of one former East German family whose lives actually span the entire 38 years of the wall's infamous existence. Grandma, Margarete Heintze, is revelling in her newfound freedom, particularly the freedom to travel abroad. Her son, Gerd, has achieved his dream of a comfortable house in the Berlin suburbs. And grandson, Philip, has embarked on a promising academic career and will soon do postgraduate studies at Oxford. So how do the Heintzes add and subtract the pluses and the minuses of a reunified Germany? How do they compare their life now with the one they led behind the wall? Well, I met with them last weekend, in what was old Berlin, literally in the shadow of the few hundred metres of the wall still standing. 


Please Note: More interviews will be added as time permits.