The Press: A Bet on Berlin

High overhead, Communist jets traced white contrails in a sky of startling blue. A bare 150 feet away, residents of Communist East Berlin gawked from windows. Just across the border in West Berlin, Publisher Axel C. Springer, 47, last week confidently laid the cornerstone of a $4,700,000, 35-story headquarters for his press empire, the most powerful on the Continent. Springer's three wishes as he gave the cornerstone its traditional three raps: "Unity and justice and freedom."

Coming two days before the deadline originally set by Nikita Khrushchev for the West to quit West Berlin, Springer's ceremony was particularly symbolic. "The fact that...

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