Sunday, April 27, 2008

A drive to save Tempelhof Airport, base of the Berlin airlift

Soviet authorities suddenly imposed a blockade on West Berlin in 1948, cutting off all road, train and boat access and leaving 2.2 million Berliners stranded on an island of the new Cold War.

In what is now considered one of the greatest operations in aviation history, U.S. and British pilots began flying in the first of what would be more than 5,000 tons of supplies daily to Tempelhof Airport, whose grand passenger hall once was considered a temple to Adolf Hitler's dream of a grand Germania.
Today, Berlin residents will go to the polls to vote in a referendum on plans to close Tempelhof, which stands as a majestic relic near the center of a now-united Berlin.