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As an American, I am greatful as well to all involved in this effort. Uncle Wiggly Wings set an example that is followed even today. http://www.hill.af.mil/museum/history/candy.htm
Thank you, David and Ray, for reminding me :-)
jlwb

Great indebtedness does not make men grateful, but vengeful; and if a little charity is not forgotten, it turns into a gnawing worm. (Friedrich Nietzsche)

I like the quote from Nietzsche from Olaf above. I don't see the British or French touting for gratitude in Germany. Why should the US? Reminds me of the faded beauty with too much make-up, fishing for compliments and blissfully unaware of being fat and ugly...

As Robbie Burns said: O wad some Power the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!
Translation for the Scots-impaired... “Oh would some power the gift give us, to see ourselves as others see us...”

Never mind Nietsche and his peculiar ruminations , fact though is, that OPERATION VITTLES was everything else but a “a little charity” – to the contrary , it was a humanitarian rescue mission of gigantic proportions in terms of materiel , costs , logistics etc involved – all that , to prevent the imminent starving-out of Berliners at the hands of the Sowjets.

The Good Samaritans actually had to scramble as far away as Alaska to find enough aircraft for their ambitious operation . Also , because Tempelhof Airport alone could not handle the rapid fire cargo aircraftlandings , a new airport , Tegel, was build from scratch in record time.

How blank must nerves be exposed , when a mere mentioning of simple facts morphes into ‘touting’ .
Surely it is not Americans who are tooting their horns loudest in the ‘touting’ department – an other nation enjoys this questionable reputation.

In any event , Americans have every reason and right, to stand tall and proud looking back at their numerous overachievements – nobody else would have even come close to it.

Thank You America!

But people who’s parents lived for over a year from handouts , plucked coal and sugar beets from railway beds, picked up discarded cigarette butts and poked through allied trash cans for sustenance , may find it hard to swallow , that there are hearts bigger than their own .

More OPERATION VITTLE/LITTLE VITTLES pics @ http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/BERLIN_A/148.JPG etc.

May God bless America and her true friends ... Heinz

One is "fishing for compliments" if out of the blue - for no reason whatsoever, one brings up a past favor

In this case, since it is the german public ( with some exceptions like Heinz ) who are consistently and viciously critical of the United States it is merely an attempt to interject a little reality into the discussion of the way America is viewed

Or in short - stop bashing us at every turn ( Katrina used as an example of how inferior the US system is??? ) and we will be glad to stop reminding you of how ungrateful you are for the peace and prosperity that was bought with US blood and sweat for your nation

Adding to the commet by houndstooth, I wonder if some of the passionate and misguided German opposition to, and disparagement of, the U.S. presence in Iraq isn't born of a fear that the U.S. is once again demonstrating its moral fortitude by freeing the enslaved and allowing them a voice in their future.

as Mark Twain put it..
if you give a starving man soemthing to eat and a starving dog something to eat, the difference is that the dog will not bite you...

ohhh
and if the amis are so Weltfremd, why would they be 'fishing for compliments'?
after all we don't even know where Germany is..
right?
I hear that all the time..
the amis are so weltfremd and geologically challenged.. we don't care what the world thinks of us..
but yet the poster seems to imply that the Amis are 'fat and ugly and fishing for compliments'.
if we don't care what the world thinks, why would we be fishing for compliments?

(shrug) Friedrich Nietzsche was an idiot in the late 1800s, and his drivel has not improved with reflection over time.

Gratitude is not what I am looking for from Germany, just some sense of fairness and friendship. America has something of a history of doing the right thing. Even in our rare failures, our hearts are usually in the right place. Yet, instead of fairness, or deserved benefit of the doubt, the default presumption is that America is evil and wrong. Amazing that in Germany of all places, we are so thoroughly resented for winning the Cold War.

@Tom: Do you think this might seriously be attributed to the recent infusion of East Germans into the general population? Yeah... I know, I remember the anti-Vietnam demonstrations of the '60s, I was an adult then. But I always regarded that as something "fashionable" to do. But perhaps today we're seeing an influence from people who were never benefitted by the US Cold War protection?

Sorry to break it to you, but Friedrich Nietzsche was a genius cynic who understood the nihilist nature of the Kaiserreich better than any of his contemporaries.

However, Germany was not left indebted after WWII, so Olafs quote is completely out of context in this thread. The U.S. did not pursue the airlift to do Berlin a personal favor, but to keep a fragile balance in a greater geopolitical struggle into whose focus Berlin had come. Though, Germany still has enough inter-generational frictions to easily overlook that the Berlin airlift which primarily benefitted the renegade Nazi generation could have had geopolitical significance beyond these internal issues. And the Frankfurt Air Base is primarily remembered over the quasi civil war of the 1970s/80s over the Startbahn West extension, which spawned the Green party in Joschka Fischer's home state of Hessen, rather than for events still another generation before.

BTW: "Es giebt ja Gründe genug, im Allgemeinen den Herren Antisemiten nicht über den Weg zu trauen. Übrigens ist ihre Sache viel populärer als man in der Ferne ahnt." Friedrich Nietzsche 1885

What's the message? Are you trying to say that Germany, as a gesture of gratitude, should have sent troops - to Vietnam?

NotForSale, asking Germany to stand for freedom would obviously be rediculous. But, does Germany have to persistantly be onside with our enemy? Not real friendly.

@Tom Penn

Which enemies do you have in mind? International terrorism? Iran? Taliban? Syria? Hurricanes?

@NotForSale: Get real, even before the 1968 cultural revolution Bundeswehr deployments abroad would only have been possible if the Kennedy administration would have accepted German nuclear weapons under the "Multilateral Force" plan. You can guess that the Germany of the time of the Vietnam war was too busy reinventing itself to get involved into a situation as complex as "an anti-imperial power fighting imperial wars against anti-imperialists backed by imperial powers." (Ralph Peters)

As for siding with the enemy, what I have in mind is this:

Berlin, Germany (AHN) - The International Atomic Energy Agency won't refer Iran to the United Nations Security Council when the board meets next month. ... An official from one of the EU3 countries says, "The approach is not to refer Iran to the Security Council at the moment. The idea is not to provoke Iran."

I suppose even if the Bundeswehr would finally follow the Rhein-Main Airbase into full-fledged disarmament and sent the last soldier to the Arbeitsamt, there might still be some officials to keep up this ridiculous excuse for stalling the international diplomacy.

So the Germans should be grateful the USA thus into all eternity for the Berlin air lift?

Perhaps one should analyse, why the USA did such an effort for the city of West Berlin.

First one may not forget that the areas, which were conquered by the west allied troops before end of world war II were by far larger than the small piece of western Berlin.

Those areas were given to Stalin from until today unexplainable reasons by Churchill and Roosevelt against tiny piece of Berlin. From my personal view by these two (too) old men the foundation-stone for the cold war was put at that time.

When the west allied later found out who they were `allied´ with Western Berlin became the bulwark against communism. In addition Western Germany and the rest of Western Europe became the strategic base for the USA during the conflict with the Soviets. Would the Germans the Americans have had to be also grateful, if the cold war had become suddenly hot?

The strategic leaders of the US- military always saw Germany as battleground. No one cared if it would have been completely destroyed while it was used as a buffer for the Soviet steam roller. Don´t expect me as a German to be grateful for that.

It is so ridiculous to state US- Americans would have helped the Germans , because they were so close friends.
Still four years before Germans and Americans fought against each other, if it had to be with bare hands. It gave thousands of American families, who lost a father, a son, a husband or a friend . On German side was not this different the losses where just a bit higher. Why should these people be suddenly thick friends? The appointed friendship between our two people was just a community out of purpose. Not more and not less.

No one was ever grateful to the Germans also never for a long time.
Where the British grateful to the Germans for helping them at Waterloo against Europes worst dictator at that time, Napoleon Bonaparte, to teach the final defeat.
Pure hate against everything German is already nearly genetically conditioned in Great Britain. Even for a long time before the two world wars.

Was any American ever grateful to the Germans for the rocket technology, with which the running to the moon was decided in favour of the USA. No, never.
Perhaps the USA should slowly start to make a difference between gratitude and blind obediently.

In our time the USA require that the Europeans should take up Turkey to the European community.
Probably, because an attenuation of the strength of the European Union would strengthen the USA´s requirement of being the one and only ruling Power of the world.
The European leaders (with the british butlers Blair and Straw as leaders) play this play from blind obedience to Washington, against the avowed will of over 70% of the European population.
What would happen if Turkey joins the European community with so many European people against that step?
From my point of view the worst case would be a civil war in Europe, only because Washington gets its interests interspersed.
Should we be also grateful for that?

@FranzisM "...siding with the enemy..."

Britain is one of the three countries "siding with the enemy". You can't be serious about that, can you? It's important to distinguish between goals and means. While the enemies are the same, we sometimes disagree as to the means by which to fight the enemy. In view of the mess the Bush Administration has created in Iraq, based on the nonsense it has claimed in the 2003 United Nations speech, we are well-advised to consider different options to achieve the same goal.

I would prefer to starve to death before I would accept any help from an Anglosaxon.
However one comment confused me a bit, it was from greatsage " I don't see the British or French touting for gratitude in Germany."

The French ? What has France done for Germany that would justify any gratitude ? I really don't know. From the time of Napoleon to the Versailles treaty France was only interested in stealing land and money from Germany. After WWII, a war France actually never won they were declared a winner by the real winners and occupied a part of Germany. They even tried to block German unification in 1990 and Helmut Kohl had to sell the Deutsche Mark to François Mitterrand and give away Germany's fiscal independence.

@NotForSale - If it were for Britain alone, Iran already would have been referred to the Security Council when it kidnapped those British sailors on the Shatt-el-Arab last year, and if it were just for Britain and France, the referral would have come after Iran broke the Paris Agreement in Isfahan this summer. It is Germany which still sticks to the illusion Iran could suddenly go the way of Libya even though it is expanding its enrichment facilities instead of dismantling them. Bringing our position on Iran closer to that of Russia than to that of France and Britain puts the stability of the EU-3 coalition at risk. And that stability is vital for Germany, as it represents our interests in the Security Council when it comes to considering the different options on Iran.

The alternative is to trust Putin to appease Iran as long as possible, and when the Pasdaran come to bite him in the ass he will smoke them out with chemical weapons such as the Chechen terrorists in the 2002 musical theater siege. Then you could talk about "mess" and "nonsense" as much as you want.

@germantommy: Sachsen-Anhalt and Thüringen were given to Stalin in June 1945 to buy a Soviet signature under the United Nations Charter. If the cold war would not have had that foundation, it might have had a higher probability to turn hot.

Then, that the origins of space technology lie in slave labor is not something to be proud of, neither is the fact that we needed a Napoleon to get rid of the "Holy Roman Empire of German Nation".

Furthermore, you have to concede that Turkey was Christian yet before the rest of Europe, and that the British can hardly be blamed for never having been in the shoes of continentals.

In any case, if there's going be another civil war, it will be because of Islamic foreign aid flowing into Europe, a development on which the Americans have no influence.

@FranzisM: I have my doubts that presidents like Nixon or Reagan would have paid such a high price like Sachsen-Anhalt and Thüringen for wich a lot of American soldiers died just to get a signature from Stalin.

`Then, that the origins of space technology lie in slave labor is not something to be proud of,´

Slave labour? During the late nineteen twenties? I must have missed there something at school. I guess you are talking about the mass production of rockets during war time.

Why did we need an utter French slob to get rid of the "Holy Roman Empire of German Nation" and why did France never got forced to be sorry for setting the whole continent aflame.

`Furthermore, you have to concede that Turkey was Christian yet before the rest of Europe,´

Turkey? Christian? That contry is gouvernd by an islamistic party and an islamistic president who states the the towers of the mosques are the bayonettes of his religious movement.

`and that the British can hardly be blamed for never having been in the shoes of continentals.´

Being German I don´t care for the British even if you present them to me on a silverplate.

`In any case, if there's going be another civil war, it will be because of Islamic foreign aid flowing into Europe, a development on which the Americans have no influence.´

Islamic foreign aid is allready flowing into Europe with turkish support. This has to be stopped in any way even if the US- americans don´t like it.

Ah - the old "you only saved West Berlin ( or W Germany or W Europe or Japan or S Korea ) because it was in your interest to oppose Soviet expansionism"

How many times have I heard that one

I can never help but imagine a man chasing away a would be rapist and saving a young lady while out walking in his own neighborhood only to have the intended victim express disdain for her saviour saying "oh you only saved me because this is your neighborhood and chasing away that man helps you"

It may well be in his interest - but to ignore that it was many many times more in her own interest that the action took place would strike me as a sign of severe mental issues

and so it is with our European friends who continue to beat their "sure you saved us but really it was in your interest" drum

Get it through your heads already - you were saved - and saved by the USA

Deal with it - and work from there to understanding why today the USA is viewed as a force for evil in the world .... and has been even before big bad GW Bush took office

`the old "you only saved West Berlin ( or W Germany or W Europe or Japan or S Korea ) because it was in your interest to oppose Soviet expansionism"´

Well, wasn’t it?

`It may well be in his interest - but to ignore that it was many many times more in her own interest that the action took place would strike me as a sign of severe mental issues´

You just forget that if it wasn’t in the United States interest they just wont have done it.

`Get it through your heads already - you were saved - and saved by the USA

Deal with it - and work from there to understanding why today the USA is viewed as a force for evil in the world .... and has been even before big bad GW Bush took office´

I as a person have no problem dealing with it. I would rather pick up a gun to fight and die instead of living under a communist authority.

I just think it is just ridiculous to claim that the Americans did that airlift because of their great love and admiration for the German people.
It is very short minded from the American point of view to say `who is not with us is automatically against us´. I was always much more against Schröder than I ever was against Bush.
Only because the German press claims that President George W. Bush is an evil man I don’t have to believe it.
Just because I say that I don’t like some of his ideas it doesn’t mean that I don’t like the whole of his work.

Poque Mahone, perhaps the US is "viewed as a force for evil in the world", because they are leadings wars unilaterally without being attacked, because we see pictures of proud US soldiers torturing prisoners, hear reports of numerous deaths in hidden US "detention facilities" spread over the world, see people being held without rights and without trial for years in a US prison camp, which must be operated on cuba because it breaks just about any US and international law, and so on and so on...but of course that's all a big propaganda lie of Schröder and the evil German media?

@Teutone, this is pure rubbish. The USA were attacked on 9/11/2001. After that they just reacted. The prisoners on Guantanamo are partisans. They are lucky that they are imprisoned. During world war two the partisans at the balcans had a much more worse fate.

When an old building is torn down, a military base is closed down or turned over, any sort of object, or tradition with a significant history is discontinued, or a famous personage has died, it is a normal thing for the media to inform those who are too young to remember or too busy to take the time to learn. Programs are done, retrospectives, histories, or biographies that lay out the event in context.

I do not know whether something like this was done in the FRG but it should have been. This is German history and if you don't remember it, you will err in the future. Feel gratitude if you like or resentment, if you want. I just ask that the FRG doesn't institute a societal memory hole. That's an international strategic danger. If Germany knows its own history and America behaves as a friend, Germany will end up reciprocating. If the FRG chooses "forgetfulness", we are headed for trouble over the long haul no matter what the US does.

Teutone,

Perhaps you didn't notice, but Iraq and the US/UK had essentially been at continous war since the cease fire after the Gulf War. The US and UK were flying missions to protect the Kurds in northern Iraq for 12 years. During that time they were continuously fired upon by Iraqi forces. It should be noted that France initially participated in these missions, but withdrew and within a year or so signed some rather lucrative contracts for developing Iraq's oil fields. Germany, the nation with primary responsibility for providing Iraq with chemical weapons technology and know how that enabled the gassing of Kurds, of course didn't even do as much. Germany was more interested in winning lucrative supply contracts with Iraq, no doubt to help bring down that massive unemployment rate.

You may assume so germantommy - that if it wasn't in the US interest to save W Berlin and W Germany and indeed W Europe we would not have done so...but you cannot prove this is the case. US soldiers have also gone to Somalia and the Balkans - what was our "self-interest" those times?

But even accepting that it was in our interest to avoid Soviet domination of Europe - what difference does it make to the issue of European gratitude for this effort? "With us or against us"...hardly A simple stfu would be nice in cases like Iraq however

Germany wasn't sending a single soldier to Iraq and was never expected to - so why the deliberate effort to work with Chirac to SAVE Saddam???

As an American we are just baffled by this behavior from an Ally that we felt had some good will for us.

Sure we put out the fire that was burning you home and part of the reason we did so was to save our own house next door...but that doesn't mean this action didn't benefit you many times more than us.

( how many more of these analogies do you desire :) )

germantommy, I could write a book in response to your rediculous post. I'll try to restrict myself to one question:

If American motives were purely selfish in WWII, tell me what we won with all our blood, treasure, kindness and basic decency? What did we WIN asshole?

I wonder how many Wessies who think
'we don't need to be grateful' on the other hand think the Ossies are ungrateful...
Probably quite a few ..
and most probably don't see the irony in that position.

@germantommy: We're talking about an event before Alamogordo, Nixon and Reagan had nuclear arsenals, Roosevelt did not.

Napoleon was the product of a situation in which the old order collapsed and a country had to perform a full-fledged regime change upon itself. You can compare this to an attempt of a surgeon to operate himself, it will turn quite bloody. The U.S. had just been founded and could not yet assist such as in later times, but the American revolution was rocking the boat of Europe. Even the discovery of colonial America had been destabilizing the Holy Roman Empire so much that the Protestant reformation and the Peasant wars were just as bumpy for Germany as what later happened to France.

The European Union is not opening up to Turkey because the Americans agree to it, but because our own left is deluded enough to persuade itself that Turkey could be the prototype of democracy to the Islamic countries. They need a substitute for Iraq. I think the European Union should establish an incompatibility clause with the Organization of the Islamic Conference, and then let Turkey choose whether they want to join the EU or stay in the OIC. The OIC is a confederacy of tyrannies worse than the Warsaw Pact and we should work to dismantle it. But you can't expect the Americans to lead the European integration, that line has to be drawn by European countries.

If you build your German identity on nothing but distinction from England then you make the same mistake as the Church of England made when it built its identity on its distinction from Rome. The Church of England has sunk low enough to voluntarily surrender itself to Islam. I suppose you don't really want to get down to that point.

@TM Lutas - Watch the program of Hessen TV as well as their repeat of a 30 years old program on Rhein-Main.

Germantommy’s finds precious little leeway to foulmouth the States for having filled food into the mounth of millions of Berliners and coal into power plants for having kept the lights on.

Not deterred, he soldiers on with a self-declared ‘analysis’ , a veritable hodgepodge, that amounts to nothing more than a bucket full of irrelevant drivel . Same old same old .

Far and wide reaches this incongrous ‘analysis’ , somewhere between moon and Waterloo lies the elusive truth that , ... aahhm, ...what ? Ahh so , German genius, unappreciated as usual, is responsible for most of humanity’s progress while the root cause of humanity’s sufferng lies at the feet of anglo saxons and their cousins. Wow, that’s deep ! Deep ***** !


America fought and won simultaneously on two opposite ends of the world, she armed-up 20 nations to ward off unsolicited 'bliss' , courtesy of two ‘master races’ ; yet , according to spinmeister, the U.S.A. would have been too dimwitted to get a rocket off the ground.


Funny though , it should not take rocket science to understand what the imprint on American CARE parcels meant :‘ GIFT OF THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA’ . 'Gift' meant precisely that, a gift , no ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ about it.


General Clay acted immediately , to help beleaguered Berliners not to suffer the awful fate that Sowjets had in store for them - payment in kind for what Nazis had had in store for the people in Leningrad. No ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ about it.

Gen. Clay was not in a position to suck up some weird ideas , justifying what he knew was the only and right thing for him to do.


Enough of it. Among those gifts of unknown luxuries like scented soap and delicious chocolate bars, CARE parcels also brought candy apple red yo-yos to German kids. We first had to get the hang (and spin) of those new American yo-yo toys ,but you know what Mister? I sure as heck recognize a German yo-yos anytime – and I don’t want to play with ‘em ... Heinz

germantommy, the question was: what did American's win in WWII. Even if you were here, I think it's clear that you wouldn't know, so I will pose an honest answer.

We fought and bled and died for YOUR FREEDOM. Then, we fed you. Then we helped you pick yourselves up and dust yourselves off, nursed you back to self-governance (such as it is), and then we protected you from the threat of tyranny for a generation.

Americans won YOUR FREEDOM in WWII. That is the extent of our Impire or Empire or whatever you choose to pretend. My personal family's sacrifice and suffering during and after WWII was heavy enough to know how incredibly full of shit you are.

You asked me "what enemies"? Our enemies are dictators, terrorists and ignorant fools like you and your nation who supports them.

You want to question me about motives? I wish you could question my Uncle Scott, or my grandfather, or Geneva Sutton about their motives. Saddam Hussein is the bloodiest single man alive TODAY, you IGNORANT FOOL. WHAT ARE GERMANY'S MOTIVES?

Correct me if I'm off base, but, this blog seeks to bring out the truth. It counters the slander in the German media. To do this, history must be viewed with an honest eye, as well.

Sure, it was in the USA's national interest to help Berlin. It was also in our interest to win the war. There was no national interest behind the Candy bomber. There were also reasons that Germans did all they could to reach the US zone at the end of the war. They ran to the US zone! That may have been in our national interest, but, we didn't have to do anything for it to happen. These little pieces of history seem to be forgotten by many Germans.

Iraq invaded Kuwait. There was a ceasefire. There was not an end to the war. Iraq tried to kill President Bush, 41. They tried to shoot down our planes. They provided money and safe haven to terroists. They ignored the cease fire and over a dozen UN mandates. People may question if that was enough to go to war over, but, they can not say this didn't happen. This history also seems to be forgotten.

Out of 140,000 troops, less than .001 were stupid and cruel. At the same time, German soldiers were being tortured by their own military. There are stupid and cruel people everywhere. We have been putting ours in jail. What is Germany doing to those that abused their own soldiers? What about the German soldiers in Kosovo? Are they being held to account?

Gitmo! Those "poor people" could have been shot on the spot and international law would have been followed! If Germany were less lax about their trials, I would suggest we send them all there! They want to kill anyone who doesn't follow their twisted view of Islam. Prehaps Germans would think twice about having "these poor people" on the loose if they had: 1st World Trade Center Bombing, Kobart Towers, USS Cole, African bombings, Black Hawk down, and 9/11.

To those soldiers, like my father-in-law, who helped to liberate a concentration camp and didn't shoot every German in sight, I say, you are a better person than I am! To the military who took the US soldiers that raped German women, tried them and gave them the death sentence, I am greatful for your honor. To all the military who were wounded and the families who lost loved one in WWII, I wonder how you can ever forgive those who forced this war upon us!

To Col. Gail Halvorsen, thank you and all the others who made life a litter easier and sweeter for the children of Berlin. To the current US military, the MSM does not tell the story, but, we hear about the schools you have rebuilt, the roads, etc. You follow Col. Halvorsen's example!

To you jerks that can not see the honor in Halvorsen's actions, too bad!

To those who think that Gitmo is awful, quit having fits when these people are sent back to their own country!

To those who believe that the USA is evil, not a problem. Just don't call on us when you have a problem! I'm tired of having MY son fix YOUR problems!

Oh, and if you support someone who is out to kill my boy, you are NOT a friend! It gets personal when my son is being shot at with weapons sold, illegally, to the person trying to kill him!

To the many Germans who do know history and do know that it repeats itself, thank you for your support.

from: the VERY proud mom of a US soldier, the host mom to a dozen German kids (most are now adults), and many thanks for my amazing daughter-in-law who is German
jlwb

@ jlwb : You made my day! Thanks :-)


What really is bit of a burr under my saddle is this bunch‘o attitude displayed : the arrogance

‘What , me thankful ? To Americans ? What for ? ’ . Incredible!


What is astounding also , is the fact , that up to this point , 80 hrs into this thread , the word ‘appreciat/e/ion’

has not been mentioned once. If you just about choke on ‘thank you’ , is it really too

much expected from presumably ‘cultured’ people to hear a ‘ we greatly appreciate your help’ ?


What kind of a time warp are we living in? If some Germans find absolutely no reason

whatsoever to be appreciativ of the fact that Americans prevented millions of their fellow

citizens from dying a slow and painful death , then , by the same token , will those same

Germans find absolutely no reason whatsover to condemn the fact , that Sowjets wanted millions

of German citizens to die a slow and painful death. Disgusting! Gives you the creeps.


Now it’s time for you guys to wipe that friggen smirk off your face : These 8 Americans of German

descent , together with 24 fellow officers , gave their lifes to save others during the Berlin air lift :


Richard Winter

Karl V. Hagen

Robert W. Stuber

Edwin C. Diltz

Richard M. Wurgel

William A. Rathgeber

Robert C. von Luehrte

Herbert F. Heinig .

I hope you have the balls to pause for a minute .... Heinz


@germanstommy: Many of the other posters have done a good job of taking apart your miserable little post limb from limb. I'm now here to complete the dismemberment.

"Still four years before Germans and Americans fought against each other, if it had to be with bare hands. It gave thousands of American families, who lost a father, a son, a husband or a friend . On German side was not this different the losses where just a bit higher. Why should these people be suddenly thick friends? "

Maybe because some of them weren't as small-minded as you evidently are? Maybe because some of them genuinely want to eradicate the influence of an evil philosophy, and were willing to put personal/tribal differences aside in pursuit of that goal? von Braun made his peace with Duncan Sandys at the end of the war. Sixty years later, why can't you do the same?

"The strategic leaders of the US- military always saw Germany as battleground. No one cared if it would have been completely destroyed while it was used as a buffer for the Soviet steam roller. "

This is hogwash for any number of reasons: (1) If the U.S. had wanted Germany destroyed, it would have been destroyed. Period. (2) The Soviets had no desire to "steamroll" Germany. They wanted it intact; they wanted its economic and industrial muscle to exploit. Far from being a "buffer", Germany was in fact one of the prizes of Western Europe during the Cold War. Further, what would have been protected by using Germany as a "buffer"? Spain? Get real.

"Where the British grateful to the Germans for helping them at Waterloo against Europes worst dictator at that time, Napoleon Bonaparte, to teach the final defeat."

What does this have to do with the U.S.? Context please.

"Was any American ever grateful to the Germans for the rocket technology, with which the running to the moon was decided in favour of the USA. No, never. "

It is here that I can authoritatively and categorically state that you do not know what the f**k you are talking about. The town I live in basically owes its current existence to the German rocket teams. I grew up with their children. The civic center here is named after von Braun. Every American who knows anything at all about space exploration (admittely, this isn't everyone; science education in the U.S. currently isn't what it should be) knows about the German contribution. And I should point out that German influence in the U.S. goes back a lot farther than that. In fact, I've said it here before, and I'll say it again, that it seems that one of America's current functions seems to be to act as a cultural safe-house for all that is good about German culture, while Germany itself seems to be in the process of rejecting same. Maybe twenty years from now, some Germans will visit some of the German-influenced areas in America, realize what Germany used to be in its better days, and start demanding some changes back home.


The Federal Republic of Germany was not a sovereign country prior to 1990 and the people , who held citizenship of that country were not allowed to work out their own destiny. They had to follow the rules of the occupiers and their collaborators. America and Great Britain basically protected their own property when they protected West Germany and West Berlin.
Of course the same could be said about the Democratic Republic of Germany and their Russian occupiers, but nobody in Moscow would demand gratitude from the East Germans for the Red Army's military protection against Anglosaxon imperialism.

Let me ask you a few questions, Johannes:

1. What changed in 1990? Are you saying that America isn't still occupying Germany now? (Stick with me here, folks, I'm playing devil's advocate.)

2. What specifically did "Anglosaxon imperialism" accomplish in the period since WWII? What territories did it conquer, and what peoples did it genocide? What did the loving, caring, Soviets do to prevent it? In what was was their occupation of East Germany superior to the American "occupation" of West Germany?

3. Given that Soviet protection was obviously superior to American imperialism, why are you people so upset at Roosevelt and Churchill? By your own logic, the one you should be upset at is Stalin, for not pressing the Soviet Union's claim to all of Germany. After all, if the Soviets had succeeded in taking the entire country into its "protection", then the Berlin Wall would never have been built.

@Herr Thrust..
I am an ami who lives in Germany.
would you please accept my personal apologies?
The Germans have suffered oh so very much under American Imperialism.
having seen the DDR in 1984, I know that the Soviets were oh so kind to the Germans and it was just Friede Freude Eierkuchen under Soviet occupation (I don't even want to use the word occupation, because the Russians treated the Germans as if they were family). Compared to the occupation by the American Imperialists, well let us just say it was like heaven compared to hell (DDR vs BRD)
please accept my personal apology for all your suffering.
/sarcasm off
What colour is the sky in your world?

@Cousin Dave - "The Soviets had no desire to "steamroll" Germany. They wanted it intact; they wanted its economic and industrial muscle to exploit. Far from being a "buffer", Germany was in fact one of the prizes of Western Europe during the Cold War. Further, what would have been protected by using Germany as a "buffer"?"

Geopolitical stability, such as the U.S. still do in Korea. Of course the North wants to loot the South, but given the amount of military power available per square meter any hot war would be nothing less than the apocalypse for Korea. The same can be said about Europe during the cold war.

Thanks God the counteroffensive launched from the "Gateway to Europe" into the Fulda gap never happened. Instead it went straight through Rhein-Main to the Persian Gulf, where Saddam - whose claim on Kuwait was as old as the Berlin wall - tried to become a copycat of the German reunification.

If you have watched the above linked video about Rhein-Main, what stands out is the fact that commercial investors are already standing in line to take over the site. While the decisive post-cold war lesson for the U.S. was that oceans don't protect from terrorism, for Germany it was that it's not longer as if there was an ocean between our two halves, but we have again become the crossroads of Europe, and so does Rhein-Main for air traffic. Only Berlin still is an island in the sandbox of the Mark Brandenburg that is sustained by the rest of the country, though now again much less dramatic than at the time of the stranglehold of Stalin.

The Berlin Airlift Memorial will have a premium location just in the middle of a central knot in the transport network of Europe.

@Cousin Dave - "1. What changed in 1990?"

U.S. chemical weapons stocks were withdrawn from the Western hinterlands of Rhein-Main.

@houndstooth - "Funny though , it should not take rocket science to understand what the imprint on American CARE parcels meant :‘ GIFT OF THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA’ . 'Gift' meant precisely that, a gift , no ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ about it."

Gift is German for poison.

Here's a fix for the broken 2nd link in the above comment.


@houndstooth
You are welcomed :-)
I don't seek thanks, however, from Germans. I just would like to see the lies about USA and Americans, by omission and/or commission, stopped. I have people who I care very much for who are German. I would like them to look forward to the future, rather than be afraid of it. This ignorance and distain of Americans is not helping my German friends. I also know the arrogance you speak of is real. I will not be going back to Germany until things change. (Even though my trip would cost me nothing, I'm tired of the attitudes! My "kids" and their families will come to the USA instead.)

@Johannes Thust
"The Federal Republic of Germany was not a sovereign country prior to 1990 and the people , who held citizenship of that country were not allowed to work out their own destiny. They had to follow the rules of the occupiers and their collaborators."

Are you suggesting that the USA threatened to use chemical weapons if the Germans didn't do what they were told to do?

Or are you just a troll? (I vote troll :)

@ jlwb

,@houndstooth
You are welcomed :-)
I don't seek thanks, however, from Germans. I just would like to see the lies about USA and Americans, by omission and/or commission, stopped. I have people who I care very much for who are German.

Thank you for your kind thoughts , Madam.
However, the picture is not as bleak as it seems on third blush: David’s list of German language blogs holds many nice surprises in store for you. You’ll find way more objective thinking, not the usual claptrap of mainstream media. (See for instance http://www.anti-anti-americanism.com/products.htm)

“This ignorance and distain of Americans is not helping my German friends. I also know the arrogance you speak of is real. I will not be going back to Germany until things change. (Even though my trip would cost me nothing, I'm tired of the attitudes! My "kids" and their families will come to the USA instead.)”

Actually Madam, there may be an other nice surprise laying in wait for you : When I traveled with my grown up kids ( loaded with the usual compliment of prejudices ) through Germany , we were mistaken for Americans . Yet I can honestly say, we received the most kind, courteous and genuine, warm hearted treatment you could possibly imagine. For the ‘kids’ it was a wonderful reality check.

And what is the reality? Simply the fact, that a huge chunk of their population is not buying into the spin of vitriolic hate mongers, venomous naysayers , head game players and plain, duh, losers.

@ FranzisM

Gift is German for poison.
It must not come as a complete surprise to you, that you’re not really the sharpest knife in the drawer:
Changing the goalpost in mid game doesn’t behoove too well on somebody, purportedly in the know about ‘Fulda gaps’ and "Gateways”.

Well, the rosy , chubby cheeks and rotund rumps of Berliners , fed on American ‘gift’ staple food for over a year stood in stark contrast to the , ashen , hollowed and hungry faces of their pitiful eastside neighbors . Sowjets actually had stopped Americans from releasing gazillion little parachutes over their sector. Thus tons of kids stuff was prevented from falling from the heavens into eagerly grabbing kids hands, tons of gifts , that were donated by and collected from private American citizen.

How gauche of us , to give those sweetie pie Russkies not great big huggy- wuggies for that. ... Heinz

@houndstooth - The intention of my reference to your posting was to put the kids stuff from the Berlin airlift in the context of the fears that the cold war caused in Germany. Thanks for reminding me how important the kids program of the Berlin airlift was for keeping up good faith and approval ratings during a critical transition period for America. I had not focussed on that aspect.

When I talk about false warnings that resonated with later fears, please see it in context of the Soviet airdropping of landmines disguised as kids toys over 1980s Afghanistan. I consider it as self-evident that when the U.S. military drops out teasers to our kids there is no such malice to be expected. Maybe if the Soviets would have dropped harmless kids stuff over Germany it would have been appropriate to thank them that it was actually harmless.

@FranzisM:

"Geopolitical stability, such as the U.S. still do in Korea. Of course the North wants to loot the South, but given the amount of military power available per square meter any hot war would be nothing less than the apocalypse for Korea. The same can be said about Europe during the cold war."

You're still talking like the U.S.'s defense of Europe during the Cold War was done solely out of self-interest. You also seem to think that only Europe was threatened during the Cold War, and that America could afford to sacrifice Europe if it felt so inclined, because America itself wasn't threatened. Haven't you ever heard of ICBMs? The Cuban Missile Crisis?

As for Korea, explain to me how American imperialism is advanced one whit by defending S. Korea. Fact is, we could pull out and let the NK crazies waltz in and destroy the whole place in their characteristic way, and the U.S. economy would just barely notice. And it's not like South Korea is either in a strategic place, or has natural resources of any particular value. So what was your point, again?

"but we have again become the crossroads of Europe,"

Dream on. Germany today isn't a crossroads to anywhere; rather, it has chosen for itself the role of backwater -- economically powerless, militarily crippled, and diplomatically France's hand-maiden.

"The Berlin Airlift Memorial will have a premium location just in the middle of a central knot in the transport network of Europe."

Until the government leans on the land owner to terminate the lease, and sends in police to disassemble it. See the link to the Checkpoint Charlie Museum on the right hand side.

I asked what changed in 1990 that suddenly freed Germany from the clutches of evil American imperialism. You answered:

"U.S. chemical weapons stocks were withdrawn from the Western hinterlands of Rhein-Main."

And what does that have to do with anything?

By the way, I notice that none of the apologists here have bother to address my questions #2 and 3. So let me ask, in plain language, yes or no: Do Germans really believe that they would have been better off had the Allies turned the entire country over to the Soviet Union at the end of WWII?


It's not too late. Russia is interested in re-formulating the late lamented USSR. Germany can still apply to play a bit part in the dramatic remaking of modern history. Retaliate against american colonialism and hubris! Join the real humanitarians---the Russians. You know you want to. Just admit it, and go ahead and do it. That would really teach those american cowboys something, nicht wahr?

@Cousin Dave - The Soviets actually made such a proposal in 1952, and failed to win support both in Germany as well as among the Western Allies, because free elections were not on the agenda of the Stalin-Note.

If South Korea was overrun again by the North, probably China would intervene again, only this time it would be an economically powerful China well equipped with ICBMs. Chinese whims certainly are being noticed in the U.S. economy.

America was fighting the cold war out of self-interest, but when self-interest and moral reasons coincide the benefits are not limited to oneself. Neither the risks. In the case of the cold war, America was threatened with ballistic missiles, while Europe was threatened by that and by the risk of becoming a theatre for battles on the ground. However, sacrificing Europe would not have been in the self-interest of America.

Regarding the economical crisis and the preservation of monuments, you're right, the new government has a lot to do.


@houndstooth
Sir, it is wonderful to converse with you! I can see why they thought you were American! (ok, I do so love the kindness of my people!) I’m glad you found kindness in Germany. I have found it as well. I have also found hate. Some Germans are fine with adults, but, have treated my groups of teenagers with contempt, verbal abuse and scorn. I could accept that if the teens were misbehaving, but, they were not. I have also faced this hate, much to the distress of my German friends who were with me at those times. What I find is that Germans who actually know Americans personally are totally different. I’m looking forward to having 4 of my host children here, in the USA, next year as well as some of the parents!

@FranzisM
I do not know if your English is poor or you mean what you write or you are a left wing American pretending to be German.

“Thanks for reminding me how important the kids program of the Berlin airlift was for keeping up good faith and approval ratings during a critical transition period for America.”
What do you mean about Col. Halvorsen’s motives? “approval ratings”? What is your point?

“the Us military drops out teasers to our kids” “teasers”? Again, what are you saying?

So are you German?

And, I’m still waiting to find out if the USA ever threatened the use of Chemical Weapons in Germany if the Germans didn’t goose step to what the USA wanted!

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