The siege of West Berlin became a symbol of the post-1945 Cold War competition between the United States and the Soviet Union. After the U.S., France, and England solidified their zones into a single unit in 1948, the Soviets withdrew from the Allied Control Council and began a blockade of all rail, road, and water communications between Berlin and the West.
On June 24, 1948, the Soviets declared the Western administration in Berlin to be defunct and said Allied rights had been revoked. But two days later, on June 26, the United States and Britain used their aviation edge to to supply the city with food and other vital supplies from the air.
Built in just four months, the Tegel airport pictured here was, at that time, the largest airport of the world.