BW – Consequences of the Berlin Airlift

As this article states, one of the most important, if not the most important result of the Berlin Blockade and subsequent airlift was the deepening of rifts and divisions between East and West.

In the years following the Airlift, the $13 billion in Marshall Aid deepened the economic divide between East and West, a divide that largely began due to Societ stripping of their zones economy and industry as part of the reparations. As part of their efforts to rebuild a German economy in order to trade with, and ensure no future rise of fascism (the harsh and unfair terms f the Treary of Versailles being a key cause for the rise of racism in Getmany), the Western Powers took less from their zones, prefering to rebuild their zones of occupation. To some extent the French were an exception to this, they were worried about a resurgent Germany being a threat to France. It took assurances from the USA and the U.K., as promises that the western powers would keep some modicum of control over a created West German state, in terms of foreign policy etc, to get France to join its zone of occupation to the American and British zones, which had been joined to form Bizonia.

As a result of the Airlift, West Berlin remained under the control of the western powers, and as such acted as done bring of a widow into the West. Across this window moved a large number of people from East to West (as many as 31,000 by 1961). As the East German government was unable to stem this stream of people leaving the country, they felt the need to build the Berlin Wall, as the people leaving were largely young, educated people who the state saw as being vital for the rebuilding efforts, and the brain-drain of these educated people from East to West was seen as having to be ended.

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