The SED-Staat project has been funded with 500,000 euros ($615,000). Three-quarters of this budget were provided by the federal minister for culture and media, and the rest by the states of Saxony-Anhalt, Hesse and Lower Saxony. Saxony-Anhalt's minister for education, Stephan Dorgerloh, said he would have liked to see all states that were intersected by the border contribute to the project - however, he is glad that 22 years after German reunification the victims of the border zone are commemorated in a similar way to the more publicized victims of the Berlin Wall.
The Allies' defeat at Gallipoli marked a strategic turning point in the war in the Middle East. Because their plan to strike at the heart of the Ottoman Empire failed, the Allies began focusing on its periphery -- targeting the comparatively weakly defended Arab provinces. It was a plan which corresponded with the Arab desire to throw off the yoke of Ottoman rule. In July 1915, Sir Henry McMahon, the High Commissioner of Egypt, began secret correspondence with Hussein Bin Ali, the Sharif of Hejaz and of the holy city of Mecca. He and his sons, Ali, Faisal and Abdullah -- together with the Damascus elite -- dreamed of founding an Arab nation state stretching from the Taurus Mountains in southeastern Turkey to the Red Sea and from the Mediterranean to the Iranian border.