Und noch ein Fund aus der vergangenen Woche, der nicht unerwähnt bleiben sollte: dass nämlich ausgerechnet aus einer Ausstellung des russischen Geheimdienstes ein Exponat gestohlen wurde, das einmalig ist - und offensichtlich für gewisse Kreise von höchstem Wert: das NSDAP-Abzeichen Nummer Eins von Herrn Adolf Hitler.
Die Tat wurde bereits am 30. Juni erfolgreich begangen. Erst jetzt erhalten wir davon Kenntnis. Jeremy Page and Luba Vinogradova dazu in: The Times vom 19. November 2005 :
Trophy-hunter steals Hitler badge
Russian security service is embarrassed as exhibition loses the Nazi leader’s No 1 party membership badge
IT WAS, until recently, one of the most sinister and valuable trophies in the archives of the Russian agency that succeeded the KGB.
For five decades Adolf Hitler’s gold Nazi party membership badge lay in a special room in the depths of the Lubyanka, the headquarters of the Federal Security Service (FSB), along with other trophies from the Third Reich.
Only this year did the FSB put it on display for the first time at a special exhibition to mark the 60th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. But, to its enormous embarrassment, the badge was stolen from the exhibition, The Times has learnt.
Investigators say that they have little hope of retrieving the trophy, whose theft, they believe, was commissioned by a wealthy collector, possibly a neo-Nazi. They say that the burglar was clearly a professional, who cased the exhibition and used climbing equipment to lower himself from the roof and in through a window after removing the glass. “It could have been smuggled abroad or could still be in the country,” an investigator, who declined to be identified, said.
The FSB insists that the badge was a copy and of no value. But many Russian experts believe that it was the original and could be worth up to €3 million (£2.1 million). “Only after it was stolen did people start saying it wasn’t the original,” said a source at the State Archive of the Russian Federation, where the exhibition was held.
One theory is that the theft, on June 30, may have been ordered by one of Russia’s neo-Nazi groups, which have become increasingly active in the past five years, with a string of deadly attacks on foreigners and non-Slavic Russians.
The FSB, which inherited the KGB archives after the collapse of the Soviet Union, revealed that it possessed the badge in a catalogue published in 1996.
The catalogue listed several items taken from the bunker where Soviet troops found the bodies of Hitler, Eva Braun and Joseph and Magda Goebbels - all of whom committed suicide - in 1945. They included documents, personal belongings, uniforms and the jawbones of Hitler and Eva Braun. But the prize trophies were Hitler’s and Goebbels’ party membership badges - among 10,000 issued to its first members in 1934. Hitler’s was marked “No 1” on the reverse side.
Many historians believe that Hitler gave the badge to Magda Goebbels as a token of thanks just before killing himself on April 30, 1945. Goebbels and his wife had refused to leave Berlin and moved into Hitler’s bunker on April 22, 1945. They committed suicide on May 1 after killing their six children.
Soviet military intelligence officers sent the items to Moscow in 1948. In 1954 Ivan Serov, the KGB chief, handed them to the KGB archive, where they were stored in a special room for the next 51 years.
The public caught its first glimpse of the badge in 2003 in a photograph at an exhibition to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of Soviet military intelligence. But it was not put on display until this year.
A notice announcing the exhibition read: “Among the exhibits will be such rare items as the scorched map from Hitler’s bunker and his personal NSDAP membership badge.” Closed-circuit television footage showed that the burglar was a man of slight build acting alone. He triggered sensors as he scaled the 3m (10ft) wall around the museum, but guards thought that it was a cat. He also set off an alarm when sensors detected him entering the exhibition hall. But he quickly smashed the window of the display cabinet with a hammer and snatched the badge, along with eight other items, before climbing out of the window using a rope.
“If only our policemen on guard hadn’t been tying up the laces on their boots,” the investigator said, “he would have been caught on the spot.”
Copyright 2005 Times Newspapers Ltd.