The Berlin Airlift

A Senior View

Ed LyonsFebruary 1, 2012 

At the end of WWII's European Theater of Operations, the area controlled by Germany was divided up amongst the conquering allied nations: Russia, England and the U.S. The capital city of Berlin, even though it was in the Russian sector, was split between them.

It was here ... and then ... when the "Cold War" began. Russia decided to carry the reparations against their historical enemy Germany a step further by starving the inhabitants of Berlin. They barred entry to the city by the other occupation forces.

This "blockade" resulted in the establishment of what is remembered as The Berlin Airlift, an operation to supply the city by air.

A delivery system of necessities was set up between the other allied zones and Tempelhof Airfield in the Russian zone of occupied Germany.

And, this is how that went:

With no combat operations now a consideration, I had been transferred to the Military Air Transport Service (MATS), a combination of naval air transport and Army air transport systems, together with the 61st Troop Carrier Group sent to the Rhein-Main Air Base in Frankfurt, Germany to assume the American contribution to The Berlin Airlift.

Now, at the ripe old age of 18, I had completed my contribution to both phases of WWII and the first phase of the Cold War.

Mine was not a unique contribution, rather, just one of millions of American boys who continued to answer their country's call.

Up to this point our endeavors were typically American ... we won!

But ... there would be more to come, based on the premise that the military-industrial complex was more to be considered than the morality of our effort.

Truth is ... we were through winning wars. Now we would just pay for them with expenditures that should be directed inwards to our own problems and the blood of our children.

Grandpa sez' -- "Join me next week in Korea, where the only thing that changes ... is the weather!"

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