Berlin Veterans

Alumni – ASA Field Station http://fsbvg.homestead.com/

The Soviet Union and the German Democratic Republic wanted us out of Berlin for several reasons, not the least of which was because of these guys. Berlin’s central position in East Germany allowed us to monitor all kinds of electronic traffic, and much of this was done by members of the Army Security Agency’s Field Station Berlin. Here you will find pictures of the Teufelsberg “Weather Station” and other features.

Also, many contributors to the fsbvg site have provided photos showing memorable scenes of Berlin that complement material in my site. The “Agency” gave a collegiate air to Andrews Barracks in Berlin, but it is clear in hindsight that their work helped to keep the peace. When each side in the Cold War had an idea of what the other was doing, the rest of us could sleep better at night.

ASA / 78th SOU Links To Photos http://tinyurl.com/78thasa

Over 2000 photographs covering the people, places and some of the things that members of the ASA did in Berlin. This is a very bland looking site with a terrific collection from 1958 (when N. Khrushchev was at his peak, threatening to hand over Berlin to the German Democratic Republic) to 1970 (when Warsaw Pact troops had just rehearsed the Second Liberation of Berlin). We knew the “Agency” was all ears, but they took photos, too.

Berlin Brigade http://www.berlin-brigade.com/

Hans-Joachim Strangmann is a veteran of Berlin Brigade in every sense of the word, having made a career in the engineering support staff.  His knowledge of the various facilities takes visitors via his website into many locations that GI’s missed seeing.

Berlin U.S. Military Veterans https://www.berlinveterans.com/

BUSMVA – Berlin United States Military Veterans Association:  As the mission of U.S. military units in Berlin came to an end, veterans of the 1945-94 forces realized that an association was needed to carry on the spirit of our involvement, providing both typical veterans’ reunions and also commemorating and continuing our unique relationship with the people of Berlin.  This website offers veterans, diplomatic personnel, civilian employees. allies and friends a way to get together.

BRIXMIS http://www.brixmis.co.uk/

From the disjointed days after the end of World War II, each of the big four victorious Allies had the right to station military liaison missions in the territories of the others in Occupied Germany.  Through skilled negotiators, the British government obtained the rights to the largest of the three Western missions to the Soviet Zone in Potsdam.  These open intelligence-gathering operations became critical in keeping the Cold War from turning hot– and the British experience with working in what became East Germany is today one of the foundations of international weapons inspection and peace-keeping operations.  This website offers wonderful insights, including translated GDR documents, on the role and behaviour of the British mission and its reluctant “hosts” in East Germany.  Sometimes James Bond, sometimes the Goon Show…

Detachment A https://www.detachment-a.org/

When someone asked who those guys in sweat clothes working out in the field at Andrews Barracks it was tempting to say “the Stanford University football team – a bunch of tough, smart guys who were good at foreign languages.” Now in this website they can speak for themselves. (And guys, we’re sorry about sabotaging your latrine.)

Forces Francaises www.lesanciensdesffb.com/

Veterans of the French Forces Berlin —

Honneur à nos fidèles anciens et tous ceux qui nous rejoindront!  Prefer to read the Berlin story en Francaise?  Now you can click into a website set up to recognize the French contribution to the Allied forces in West Berlin.  Their unique point of view always demanded that we think carefully about what we were doing.

Mission Militaire http://www.mmflpotsdam.free.fr/

French Military Liaison Mission page, Amicale des Anciens de la Mission Militaire Francaise. —

Bienvenue sur le site de la MMFL. And even if you claim that you cannot read French, this site has some of the most enterprising photography seen on the Internet.

USMLM Association https://usmlm.us/ Out of service 3-4 May 2020.

This is the website set up by veterans of the U.S. Military Liaison Mission to the Soviet forces in Germany.  Their story, in short, is part of the reason that World War III did not happen.  Roving the highways, not to mention the byways… and sometimes the no-ways of the Soviet Sector of Germany, their observations helped us to determine the plans and actions of the Soviet forces and satellite Warsaw Pact allies.  This was meant to be done in a manner long established by international military tradition, through procedures which also permitted similar work by the Soviet Union’s military in the former American sector of West Germany.  Neither the Soviets nor the East German GDR government could accept that, and USMLM personnel were forced to overcome numerous obstacles.  They were supported logistically by Berlin Brigade.

6941st Guard Service Bn http://www.guardbattalion.de/

Among the interesting features of Berlin Command was the long-lived 6941st Guard Battalion.  Composed primarily of Germans, it provided security for U.S. installations and was what today could be called a “force multiplier” by letting U.S. troops concentrate on their primary duties.  Their work kept out petty crime and included routine security activity, but with the knowledge that they were targeted by the planned “liberators” from East Germany.  As a GI colleague of mine once commented while we shared guard duty with the soldiers of the 6941st, “if World War III starts, the first shots will be fired at each other by Germans.”

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