updated 11/9/2009 3:28:21 PM ET 2009-11-09T20:28:21

When the Berlin Wall came down 20 years ago today, was Nicolas Sarkozy chipping away at it with a pickax?

That's what the French president is suggesting in a casual post on his Facebook page.

But some Frenchmen aren't so sure he was really at Checkpoint Charlie on that historic night.

Journalists are questioning his account — and suggesting that he only went to the wall a day later, or even a week after the event.

One reporter who was in Berlin that day says Sarkozy couldn't have arrived there so quickly, because the events unfolded so late in the day.

All of the debate and speculation is threatening to overshadow the concert and light show being held in central Paris tonight to celebrate the anniversary.

The photo, posted on Sunday, shows a younger Sarkozy taking what appears to be a small pickax to the graffiti-covered wall on Nov. 9, 1989.

In a text accompanying the photo, Sarkozy said he arrived in West Berlin on the morning of the 9th and then crossed Checkpoint Charlie to the East, where he chipped at the wall.

"The night continued amid general enthusiasm," the posting read. "The reunion of the German people signaled the end of the Cold War and the start of a period of great liberty in Europe."

In 1989, Sarkozy was 34 and a top official in France's conservative RPR party.

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