What do you know about the Berlin Airlift?
[An important work of history-since-1945 devoted] less than a page to the airlift. That caused Reeves to wonder whether the 277,500 high-risk, expensive flights through Soviet airspace to supply food and fuel to the West Berliners had disappeared in the mists of history.Much of the mission in Iraq has been of the same nature. America may not be the only power in history that so readily forgives former enemies, and bends itself wholly to their good when they are ready to be friends instead; but it must be in rare company.
Students questioned by Reeves said they had never heard of the airlift. Reeves' contemporaries generally guessed the effort had occurred during the presidency of John F. Kennedy, not the presidency of Harry S. Truman 13 years earlier.
Unable to restrain his enthusiasm, Reeves told audiences about Truman's heroic decision to supply Berlin by air, in the face of objections from his cabinet and the Joint Chiefs of Staff that it would be impossible to feed a city of more than two million by using cargo planes.
"Then I would babble on about the daring young men (and some women) from the States and Great Britain being pulled away from their new lives, their wives, their schools, their work for the second time in five or six years," Reeves writes. "This time they were supposed to feed the people they had been trying to kill, and who had been trying to kill them, only three years earlier."