Candy Bomber Update

 

In the Culture and Zeitgeist section of the June 13th issue of This Week In Germany (a publication of the German Information Center) there is an excellent interview with Andrei Cherny, author of The Candy Bombers. In addition to a number of illuminating comments and observations, the text offers links to a handful of relevant sites of interest in their own right, such as the Berlin Airlift Historical Foundation, the Berlin Airlift Veterans Association, and, of course, the author’s own website.

A number of interesting photographs, along with historical monographs on many of the principle actors, are featured. Each is worthy of exploration.

 

Cherny’s site also links to a number of his articles on more contemporary events, including The Word War in the Winter 2008 edition of “Democracy: A Journal of Ideas,” a print and online publication which he co-founded and edits. Aside from its intrinsic value, the article further elucidates Cherny’s perspective on the events related in The Candy Bombers.

 

For example, after criticizing several alternative characterizations of our present global conflict, he writes that “the War on Terror is best compared to the Cold War – a long-term, global, ideological struggle that will be waged on every continent, occasionally flare into armed conflict, and be ultimately won not by imposing our will but by the power of our good works and example in convincing ordinary people around the world that democracy and open markets are a better choice for them than religious despotism and closed economies.” From his vantage point, “both parties have mentioned such a foreign policy strategy. But beyond the intermittent rhetorical flourish, neither has embraced its full ramifications.”

 

It’s easy to discern an integral relationship between this perspective and Cherny’s view of the Berlin Airlift. As he explains in the interview noted above, “in the larger sense what I argue in the book is that their approach to dealing with the Germans – a people the Americans had defeated and whose country they had occupied – became seen and accepted as the way America should act in the world. There was a big debate right after World War II, and even during the war, as to the kind of role America should play as it was coming into its own as a world power. During the Berlin airlift, as the candy drops became its defining feature, Americans came to view their role as a special one – a role predicated on the belief that we had a mission in the world to act in a way that married our military might with a sense of moral purpose.”

 

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3 Responses to “Candy Bomber Update”

  1. How to Get Six Pack Fast Says:

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  2. Random T. Says:

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  3. bellerophonchimera Says:

    You might want to check out the review of The Candy Bombers posted earlier in The Power of Chocolate, and also Candy Bomber Update 2. The reference above to The Week in Germany might also be helpful, since this Fall will witness the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the destruction of the Berlin Wall, and this publication has been posting quite a lot of material related to this topic.

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