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The Birth of the Cold War and the Berlin Airlift, 1945-1950

At the end of the Second World War, the city of Berlin was located 100 miles (160 km) inside the Soviet Occupation Zone of Germany. Stalin’s allies insisted on keeping part of the city for themselves, so it was divided into four sectors, mimicking the rest of the country. Stalin needed to persuade the British, French and Americans to leave so there was nothing in the way of him completing the strategic buffer of territory reaching from the Baltic Sea to the Adriatic, which Churchill would later christen the ‘Iron Curtain’.


This is the story of how Stalin imposed his iron will over eastern Germany, and how he tried to squeeze his former Allies out by cutting off their lines of supply and blockading the city. It looks at the logistical miracle of the Berlin Airlift, which fed and heated a city of over two million people for almost eleven months. The book looks closely at the Airlift operation: the aircraft; the bases; the organisation and the logistics as well as the political background.


It is a story of alliances forged in the uncertainty of conflict, based on common interests but also pragmatic convenience, alliances that would shape the twentieth century but would be betrayed for strategic or political reasons. It is also the tale of how competing ideologies came face to face in the city of Berlin and the new Cold War was created out of the embers of the last one.


This is the first title in a mini-series of books on Cold War Berlin with Helion. It concentrates on the years 1945 to 1950, but also looks back as far as the First World War as it traces the roots of the Cold War. The text is accompanied with numerous photos, illustrations, maps, tables, diagrams, and illustrations, which help tell this fascinating story.


The book is part of the Europe@War Series from Helion & Company. Other series include Africa@War, Asia@War, Middle East@War, Latin America@War, all covering post World War Two conflicts around the world. The books follow a common format, which is proving very popular with readers. They are paperback, A4 in size, between 72 and 96 pages long and are packed with photos, illustrations, maps, charts and colour profiles of aircraft or vehicles. For more information see


96 pages, 110 b/w photos, 3 colour & 5 b/w maps, 5 charts, 17 colour profiles

Paperback - Size : A4 (297mm 210mm), ISBN : 978-1-914059-03-2,

Helion Book Code : HEL1297

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