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09. Mai 2019

South Africa Participates in Commemoration of End of Berlin Airlift 12 May 2019

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the end of the Berlin Airlift. Between 1948 and 1949 the Western Allies flew supplies to the people of West Berlin. Aircrews from the United States Air Force, the Royal Air Force, the French Air Force, the Royal Canadian Air Force, the Royal Australian Air Force, the Royal New Zealand Air Force, and the South African Air Force: flew over 200,000 sorties in one year, providing to the West Berliners up to 12,941 tons of necessities in a day, such as fuel and food. South African Air Force pilots had therefore been deployed to Bassingbourn, where they were trained for the Royal Air Force planes before they reported for duty at the British Air Force Base in Lübeck. 

Under the auspices of the Berlin Mayor this unique humanitarian act and logistical masterpiece will be commemorated "in style" and the public is invited to a whole day of political, military and cultural activities on 12 May 2019 from 12h00 to 19h00 at Tempelhof Airfield.

You get to learn about the airlift by means of a sound and video installation, which focuses on the emotional element of the airlift, an exhibition with general information on and the logistic background of the airlift, and the so-called Boulevard of the Allied Forces with information on each country’s contribution. Live interviews and discussions with veterans and historians on the main stage will provide you with hands-on background information. The programme will be rounded off by diverse musical and cultural performances. 

You get to taste a piece of South Africa as South African beverages will be sold and the famous South African Duo Qadasi & Maqhinga will perform on the main stage at 17h00.

It will be a day of fun, enjoyment, educational experience as well as cultural highlights for the entire family. Come out and join us on this special occasion! Let’s celebrate and remember the South African pilots’ achievements!

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