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Refugee Crisis

2016 and 2017 have seen a deepening refugee crisis, sparked in part by people fleeing the destruction of the Syrian civil war. Millions of people have fled war-torn regions of Iraq,, Syria, and Somalia for Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey, and increasingly flooding into Europe. These have been joined by people from elsewhere in Northern and Central Africa seeking better economic conditions.


Black and white photo of a group of Berlin residents standing amid bombed-out buildings, watching an aircraft flying overhead while landing in Berlin with relief supplies.
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Berlin Airlift Begins in 1948

On June 26th, 1948, British planes began flying in food and relief supplies to the city of Berlin, Germany. After World War II, the city was with Soviet (USSR) occupied territory, though Berlin itself was divided into two zones controlled by the Soviets and the Allied Powers. In an effort to convince the Allies to withdraw and consolidate power over the city, the Soviets cut all ground transportation links into Berlin. In response, British and American forces mounted a sustained aerial campaign to sustain what would become West Berlin, delivering 2,500 tons of supplies in around-the-clock flights. The Soviets lifted the blocade nealry a year later, though the airlift continued until September, 1949.