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BERLIN CRISIS: BLOCKADE & AIRLIFT 1948-1949 DIVISION OF GERMANY: PowerPoint Presentation
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BERLIN CRISIS: BLOCKADE & AIRLIFT 1948-1949 DIVISION OF GERMANY: Temporarily divided into 4 allied zones, but to remain as one economic unit Berlin was also divided among the 4 powers, but was entirely within the Soviet zone Allied Powers agreed to the 5 D’s of Germany: Demilitarization

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slide1

BERLIN CRISIS: BLOCKADE & AIRLIFT 1948-1949

  • DIVISION OF GERMANY:
  • Temporarily divided into 4 allied zones, but to remain as one economic unit
  • Berlin was also divided among the 4 powers, but was entirely within the Soviet zone
  • Allied Powers agreed to the 5 D’s of Germany:
          • Demilitarization
          • Denazification
          • Democratization
          • De-industrialisation
          • Decentralism
slide2

BERLIN CRISIS: BLOCKADE & AIRLIFT 1948-1949

BUT disagreements continued over:

REPARATIONS (West stops payments to USSR)

POLITICAL PARTIES (SED combo of SPD & KPD)

INDUSTRIAL REVIVAL (West wants to revive industry, USSR promotes pastoralization)

WEST fears they cannot keep supporting Germany; want a revived market

USSR fears a strong, industrialized Germany that is allied to the West

slide3

SOVIET FEARS:

1946 reparation to USSR ends

January 1947 Bizonia – Britain and US zones combine

June 1948 Trizonia–French zone joins Bizonia

June 18, 1948 Deutschmark introduced

slide5

BERLIN BLOCKADE

June 24, 1948 all road, rail and canal links between the Western zones of Germany and the Western sectors of Berlin were closed

WHY???

Todd: Stalin actually hoped to prevent the creation of a separate West German state by putting pressure on west Berlin and force negotiations.

John L. Tomkinson: Stalin wanted Western powers out of Berlin because they were a point of comparison for the East, and he was angered by Western allies decision to ignore unanimity in matters regarding Germany (such as the new currency). He used the pretext of a violation of the Potsdam agreement (over unanimity in economic affairs). The West would either respond by using force, therefore be seen as aggressors, or allow Berlin to be taken over by the Soviets.

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BERLIN AIRLIFT

West responds to the blockade by airlifting food, fuel and basics for almost a year. Approximately 275,000 flights and 2.3 million tons of goods

consequences of the berlin blockade
Consequences of the Berlin Blockade
  • psychological blow for USSR; the West had called Stalin’s bluff
  • USSR’s reputation as a protector of the workers was damaged: they had tried to starve 2.5 million West Berliners
  • West Germans and West Berliners now firmly anti-Communist (if they weren’t already)
slide10

postwar decline in US defense budget was reversed; new arms race triggered

  • formation of North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO); US, Canada, UK, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg; the US pledged itself in advance to military action if any NATO country was attacked
  • US bombers based in UK
slide11

Aug. 1949 - creation of the Federal Republic of Germany (FDR) “West Germany”; Konrad Adenauer elected as the first Chancellor

  • Oct. 1949 – Soviets set up the Peoples’ Republic of Germany (DDR) “East Germany”