The time for violence was over. Secretly recorded footage of the march was broadcast on West German television, inspiring Monday Demonstrations all over East Germany in the weeks to come. The demonstrations in Leipzig doubled in size every week, attracting protesters from all over East Germany. By Oct. 23, 1989, a little less than two weeks before the Berlin Wall came down, more than 300,000 people filled Leipzig's city center, carrying candles and banners. Leipzig was nicknamed "Heldenstadt," or "hero city."
No one knew it at the time, but the peaceful Leipzig demonstrations exerted irresistible pressure to reform on the East German regime -- and led directly to the fall of the wall five weeks later. "It was a self-liberation. We did it without the dollar or the DAX, without the US or Soviet armies," Fuehrer says. "It was the people here who did it."