Friday, 4 August 2017

operation vittles

When in late June of 1948 Soviet forces tried to starve West Berlin into surrender during the blockade the American forces—headquartered in Frankfurt am Main and Wiesbaden—responded by dispatching some two-hundred thousand re-supply flights that brought food and materiel to the isolated enclave—nearly one flight every half-minute for the following fifteen months until rail-access was restored. One response of the dependents, one thousand wives and children, of US soldiers stationed there was to create a cheerful little austerity cookbook made up of improvised and not so bleak recipes (maybe some indulgence and exotic tastes is the answer to a geopolitical crisis) to tide their families and their Germany hosts through rationing and power-cuts and general uncertainty. Within this gesture too is the stance of solidarity as the families could have been evacuated, rather than choosing to remain and tough it out.