Pardon me for being a bit thick, but I've got a couple of questions about East Germany and Berlin in the Cold War. Referring to this map here: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/01/Deutschland_Besatzungszonen_1945.svg Why did so many people risk everything trying to cross the Berlin Wall? Unless I'm missing something wouldn't it have been much easier (relatively) to enter the NATO occupied areas from outside the city? Or were the Soviet checkpoints here just as bad? If so, then how were NATO units in the City supplied, entirely by an air corridor? Also, where were the "starting lines" for the respective formations of each side deployed? Along the border between East and West Germany? If so, then this meant that if everything had gone pete tong then the NATO formations in Berlin would have started completely surrounded. Was this actually the case or were there contingencies In place to break through to reinforce Berlin if it all kicked off? I was under the impression that if the Soviets had decided to attack, they'd pretty much steam roll their way to the channel, and the NATO forces' job was to hold out long enough to for us to send Russia some instant sunshine. Don't really know much about this though so can anyone recommend any good books about Cold War Europe and the armies of NATO and the WP? I'm off on holiday soon and I fancy some good books to read.