The United States Airlifts Supplies to West Berlin (Great Events from History II: Human Rights Series)
Article abstract: In one of the first Cold War crises, the Soviet Union blockaded Western access to Berlin, and the United States responded by undertaking a massive airlift.
Summary of Event
When Harry S. Truman became president of the United States on April 12, 1945, an adviser warned him of an impending social, economic, and political collapse in Germany and Central Europe unparalleled in history since the fall of the Roman Empire. In May, 1945, Germany surrendered, bringing the European phase of World War II to an end, and the Allies occupied the ruins of Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich. In 1945, the immediate problems of dealing with a devastated Germany obscured potential future problems among the Allies. About six million Germans had died, two million were prisoners of war, and millions were missing. German industry and agriculture were almost nonexistent. Most of Berlin’s three million people lived in cellars or in ruined buildings and had no coal for heat and light. The people wandered the city, dazed from defeat and hunger. The Allies had already agreed to divide Germany into four zones, one governed by each of Great Britain, the United States, France, and the Soviet Union. Similarly, the Allies had agreed to divide Berlin, located deep in the eastern Soviet zone, into four sectors. The Allies created a four-power Allied Control Council (ACC) to administer Germany and to work out details of occupation policy....
(The entire section is 2311 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of this article. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!