ELI5: Explain Like I'm 5

Inner German border

The inner German border was a big, long fence that separated West Germany from East Germany during the Cold War. It was like a big wall that went all the way through Germany, across cities and countryside. The fence was also patrolled by guards who watched out for anyone trying to cross it.

This fence was put up after World War II, when Germany was divided into two parts. The western part became known as West Germany, and the eastern part became known as East Germany. The countries were very different from each other and had different types of governments. West Germany was a democracy, while East Germany was ruled by a communist government.

The leaders of East Germany didn't want their people to leave and go to the democratic West, so they built the big fence to keep them in. They didn't want people to escape to the West because they thought they would lose their power and control. So, they made it really hard to cross the border.

For many years, families were separated, and people couldn’t see their loved ones on the other side. The border was guarded by soldiers, and anyone caught trying to cross it was arrested or even killed.

The inner German border was a sad and scary place for a long time. But eventually, the people of Germany protested and demanded that the fence be taken down. Finally, after almost 30 years, in 1989, the fence was torn down, and Germany was reunited as one country again. Now, people can visit their friends and family on the other side of the former border and travel freely between the two parts of Germany.