“People of the world -- look at Berlin, where a wall came down . . . and history proved that there is no challenge too great for a world that stands as one” -Barak Obama-
On July 24, Barak Obama stood where a 96-mile-long wall of barbed wire and concrete once separated the ideologies and lives of East and West Berlin. He told a crowd of 200,000 that “history reminds us that walls can be torn down” and that the “greatest danger of all is to allow new walls to divide us one from another.”
He reminded the crowd that sixty years ago this summer, the Soviet Union “cut off food and supplies to more than two million Germans in an effort to extinguish the last flame of freedom in Berlin. That [was] when . . . the largest and most unlikely rescue in history brought food and hope to the people of this city.”
American pilots nicknamed the rescue “Operation Vittles.” History knows it as the Berlin Airlift.
For the fifteen months of Operation Vittles, American C-47 and British Avro York cargo planes flew over the wall separating East and West Berlin 278,228 times, flying 92 million miles and delivering over 2,325,000 tons of food and vital supplies.
The Allies literally “flew to the sun” to save two million people.
The day before his Berlin speech, Obama stood at the 187-foot-long Western Wall that flanks the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem. This wall is the closest anyone can get to the “Even ha-shetiya” (Foundation Stone), the holiest spot in Judaism and the Biblical justification for the Israeli colonization of Palestine.