Publication: The Economist
- Title Berlin under Pressure
- Publication Title The Economist
- Collection The Economist
- Date Saturday, Nov. 22, 1958
- Volume 189
- Issue Number 6013
- Page Number 675
- Place of Publication London, England
- Language English
- Document Type Article
- Publication Section News
- Source Library The Economist Newspaper Limited
- Copyright Statement © The Economist Newspaper Limited.
NOTES OF THE WEEK GERMANY Berlin under Pressure OTHING has happened yet to make the western fears of a a-new blockade of Berlin look more solid than they were. But Mr Khrushchev has made it clear in another speech that the intention he had expressed of handing over Russian occupation powers to the east Germans-which would acutely embarrass the western powers-is to be put in writing. The Russian press continues to denounce Berlin as a nest of western espionage. Berlin is the original focal point of the cold war. It was suggested in The Economist last week that the western policy of boycotting the east German regime had made it easy for Russia to embarrass the West by threats like Mr Khrush- chev's. Naturally this does not mean that the western posi- tion in Berlin should be given up to any Russian. or east German. pressure. The western powers cannot give up Berlin. except as part of a settlement that reunites Germany and thus restores the city to its position as Germany's capital. Until then. its liberty is a pledge of the western powers resolution to stand by their friends. What is wrong is to suppose that. because it would be embarrassing to have to deal with German communists in place of Russian com- munists. the Russians are necessary in Berlin and the western interest requires them to stay. This puts the form before the substance- and it puts the West in a silly position.