operation vittles


The Berlin Airlift begins 65 years ago, June 24, 1948

WORLD IN FILM. Issue no. 176, 100 DAYS OF BLOCKADE, 1948

On June 24, 1948, Soviet forces began a blockade of West Berlin, severing all land connections between the city and western Europe.  In response, U.S. and British Commonwealth Forces launched the Berlin Airlift (aka “Operation Vittles” for the Americans) to supply their garrisons and the population of Berlin.  

At its height, the airlift  delivered 5000 tons of supplies daily, including food, milk and coal, with aircraft arriving at Berlin every 30 seconds (at multiple airports). The blockade was eventually lifted on May 12, 1949.