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When the Berlin Wall fell 25 years ago, on Nov. 9, 1989, symbolically signaling the end of the Cold War, it was no surprise that many credited President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev for bringing it down.

But the true heroes behind the fall of the Berlin Wall are those Eastern Europeans whose protests and political pressure started chipping away at the wall years before. East German citizens from a variety of political backgrounds and occupations risked their freedom in protests against communist policies and one-party rule in what they called the "peaceful revolution." [excerpt]

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