WWII Berlin in photographs

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The Battle of Berlin, fought between 16 April and 2 May 1945, was the last major European offensive of the Second World War. The 17-day Soviet assault centred on the German capital, which suffered a total of 363 air raids during the war. By May 1945, 1.7 million people had fled the city. Here, MHM takes a look at World War II Berlin in pictures.


The Brandenburg Gate was one of few monuments left standing in Berlin after the Second World War.



The Reichstag after its capture by Soviet troops, 3 June 1945.



Close-up of the Brandenburg Gate surrounded by rubble and burned-out vehicles, June 1945. Image: Bundesarchiv, B 145 Bild-P054320 / Weinrother, Carl / CC-BY-SA 3.0



A Polish flag was raised on the top of the Berlin Victory Column on 2 May 1945. Although the Soviets led the 1945 offensive, they were supported by the Polish Army.



Raising a flag over the Reichstag shows Soviet soldiers raising their flag over the Reichstag building in Berlin in May 1945. The image was altered for propaganda purposes (smoke was added and looted goods were removed), and it became a symbol of Soviet victory in the Second World War.



Soviet artillery outside Berlin at the Battle of Seelow Heights, 16 April 1945. Image: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-E0406-0022-012 / CC-BY-SA 3.0



German women doing their washing at a water hydrant in Berlin in July 1945. A knocked-out German scout car sits behind them.



Rubble, burned-out cars, and broken artillery in a Berlin street, 1945.



Soviet aircraft over Berlin, April 1945. Image: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-R85077 / CC-BY-SA 3.0



A devastated street in the centre of Berlin, 3 July 1945.


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