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  1. #1
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    Oct 2008
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    Arrow Soviet Base at Havel, December 2009.)

    On Friday night we were sent some GPS co-ordinates, while barbecueing meat and veg and drinking beer in the grounds of the Lungenheilstätte am Grabowsee. After leaving some more central Berliner sites, we keyed in the co-ordinates and headed for this site. With the Timtom directing us to a locked gate that was apparently 3km from our destination, we chose to drive around the site to look for another entrance. We couldn't find one.

    We parked in the middle of the forest and trekked down some long disused roads towards where we thought the base was.

    Passing dug out trenches and watch towers, structures began to be visible through the trees, until eventually a wall appeared. We just knew we had to get past it...

    Our first sightings of buildings were great piles of concrete, the next were not much better.

    We ventured inside, they hadn't really cleared the place out properly. The boilers were inside, the floors were littered with various items of clothing, recognisable as soviet.

    Across the way was this barracks type building, with a mural on the far wall, depicting the early cosmonauts.

    Eastern European toilets were found, disgusting squatter jobbies. Gross.

    After a 20 minute walk, we arrived at another part of the base, where we were greeted by Lenin

    Next to Lenin was a huge auditorium, with more Soviet bas-relief.

    The next building seemed to be a school, Mother Russia adorning the walls, amongst other murals depicting Russian pride

    We found a Gymnasium at the other end of the building.

    As light was fading we promised ourselves one more building - we didn't want to be wandering around the forest in the dark, and we had a long way to go to get to Hannover for that evening.

    This building however was ruined; the ceiling had fallen in. Judging from the shape, it could have once been an auditorium.

    So we promised ourselves another one - and in that one, we found this...

    I looked up the info on the way back, and apparently it housed 15,000 soldiers and their families, from the elite 72nd RVGK engineer brigade.

    Declassified documents released in the 1990s revealed that this base had nuclear missiles stored there in 1958, aimed at London, Paris, Bonn, the Ruhr Valley and Brussells. The R-5M missiles stored there had a range of 1200km and the troops practiced launch preparations at night, in order to avoid the American reconnaissance.

    The site was built entirely by Soviet companies - the East Germans in the area had no idea what was behind the walls. The secrecy around the site was so great that the locals became suspicious, and a secret agent reported the transportation of 'very large bombs' being delivered in the night to the base, using the back roads around the base.

    In 1959 the 72nd Engineers vacated hastily, and the base was used by the Soviets as a tank base until the early 1990s.

    I really want to go back to this place - we only scratched the surface and I'm sure there are other treasures here.
    Last edited by Tankman; 26-08-2011 at 09:52 PM.

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