Chapter

An Unexpected Success

Daniel F. Harrington

in Berlin on the Brink

Published by University Press of Kentucky

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780813136134
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813136837 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5810/kentucky/9780813136134.003.0012
An Unexpected Success

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Tunner transformed the airlift between August 1948 and April 1949, as described in Chapter 11. He replaced C-47s with larger C-54s, able to carry three times the cargo, established a Combined Air Lift Task Force to coordinate US and British operations, and moved C-54s to newly opened airfields in the British zone, closer to Berlin, so they could make more trips per day. Clay persuaded the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the National Security Council to send more planes, crews, and navigational aids to Germany. Tunner streamlined and standardized operations in the air corridors, opened a new airfield in Berlin, and overcame logistical bottlenecks. The famous “Easter Parade” was perhaps his finest hour, and by then his success had transformed the diplomatic calculations of both sides.

Keywords: Berlin Airlift; Combined Airlift Task Force; Clay; Joint Chiefs of Staff; National Security Council; Tunner

Chapter.  11527 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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