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The Berlin Blockade was one of the first major international crises of the Cold War.

During the occupation of post-World War II Germany, the Soviet Union blocked the Western Allies' railway, road and canal access to the sectors of Berlin under Western control.

Britain and its allies responded by initiating the largest airlift in history, flying more than 270,000 relief missions into Tempelhof Airport, delivering over 1,500,000 tons of coal, food and essential supplies to save the inhabitants of West Berlin.

At one minute after midnight on 12 May 1949, the Soviets lifted their barricades and restored access to West Berlin. The breaking of the blockade was the first great humanitarian operation carried out by Britain and its allies.

Commemorating the 70th anniversary 

On Sunday 12 May, marking the 70th Anniversary of the end of the Berlin Blockade, The Royal British Legion hosted a lunch reception at the IWM Duxford for Veterans and guests to honour their service and heroism.

Guests had the opportunity to view concurrent commemoration in Berlin at Tempelhof Airport and had time to explore the IWM Duxford and its numerous aircraft, many of which are of significance to the Berlin Airlift.

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