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Thread: Nazi Art Loot Returned ... to Nazis

  1. #1
    Above the FRAY Friday13's Avatar
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    Nazi Art Loot Returned ... to Nazis

    Nazi Art Loot Returned ... to Nazis

    Years after World War II, American officials here entrusted more than 10,000 confiscated artworks to Bavarian authorities to return to the rightful owners, many of them Jews whose property had been plundered.

    But new research in the yellowing archives here makes clear how relentlessly Nazi families pursued the Bavarian officials, badgering them, often successfully, to return art they brazenly continued to view as their property.

    Hitler’s private secretary, Henriette von Schirach, and her family pleaded with officials of the Bavarian State Painting Collections to turn over nearly 300 works, including a small landscape, “View of a Dutch Square” by the Dutch artist Jan van der Heyden.

    Before the war, the painting had been owned by Gottlieb and Mathilde Kraus, Jews who fled their Vienna penthouse, leaving behind a carefully packed collection of art that was then confiscated by the Gestapo in 1941.

    Mrs. von Schirach persuaded the Bavarians to give it back to her for a pittance — 300 Deutschmarks, which was roughly $75 then or nearly $600 now.

    “The basic element of this story is this: They stole from my family,” said John Graykowski, 62, the Krauses’ great-grandson, “and then they gave it back to the guy who stole it from them. How does that work?”
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    Member Robert Urbanek's Avatar
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    "We should keep the Panama Canal. After all, we stole it fair and square." – S. I. Hayakawa (1976)
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    Who did you think it should be returned to.

  4. #4
    Veteran Member DebateDrone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freecell View Post
    Who did you think it should be returned to.
    Anyone other than the thief?

    If a line of heir can not be established, then it should be placed in the National gallery with a card with the story of it's travel to the gallery.
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    Veteran Member DebateDrone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Friday13 View Post
    How does that work? Maybe there is still a tinge of resentment of Jews in Bavaria?

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