BERLIN: The Battle of the Passes

In the remote stations of the cold war, they also serve who only sit and look at television. Under a 1947 occupation agreement, a U.S. military mission limited to no more than twelve officers and noncoms sits in Potsdam in Communist East Germany. In a comfortable lakeside villa they go about an ordinary daily routine of playing cards, listening to the radio or dialing in their favorite television programs. Similar twelve-man Russian missions sit in Frankfurt in West Germany, and in the former British and French occupation zones.

In January, as a calculated harassment, the Russians announced that the regular Soviet...

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