What if the Berlin Wall never came down? 30 years after the Peaceful Revolution of 1989, East Germany - the GDR (German Democratic Republic) - regained a certain popularity. Media like Antenne Mecklenburg-Vorpommern perform "thought experiments" (see podcast Gedankenexperiment) about a fictional continued existence of the East German communist state. When I was interviewed, I found it much difficult to avoid the outcome of the events of automn 1989 and German reunification in 1990 in a historical plausible way. I had to introduce big alterations in global affairs - Gorbatschow had to be toppled by Stalinists in the Kremlin ... It was much easier to imagine daily life in a still existing GDR with its shortages in supply even of the most common consumer goods, with an all penetrating surveillance by state security ...

At the science fiction convention PentaCon, held at Dresden on November 1 to 3, I could give a presentation on alternative history novels about East Germany. Funnily, no writer speculated about "Jonbar points" different to the real one of 1989. A written version of the presentation is available here - sorry, only in German language. My conclusion: »The best that could happen to GDR was: to be transformed into virtual history.«

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