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The Lost Masters: World War II and the Looting of Europe's Treasurehouses Paperback – May 22, 2002
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The Nazis were ruthless in their quest to possess everyone else's great art treasures. Confiscate a valuable collection from a rich Jewish family. Separate the Old Masters from the degenerate art (Picasso, Chagall, Gaugin) and then offer to trade a few of these degenerate paintings for someone else's Old Master. The authors point their fingers at many different guilty people. The Nazis are hiding the loot in various repositories. Then the US Military eventually finds the repositories and soldiers steal items themselves (the thought of soldiers deliberately smashing priceless porcelain china once owned by royalty is especially shocking), and then the Russians approach from the East and put entire repository contents into train cars that go back to Russia, where lots of the loot still remains hidden away. The authors give detailed accounts of how the huge collections were stolen, dispersed, stolen from, sold and resold. That some priceless paintings have never been found is just another depressing aspect of this depressing story.
If you love great art, your heart will break as time and time again, you read about a valuable painting that was obviously stolen and was then resold.Read more ›