Art: Booty Returned

The day after the Soviet army entered Berlin in 1945, Red "Trophy Squads" began rounding up all known German museum men and forced them to show where the nation's art treasures were stored. About 1,500,000 art objects were crated posthaste, and shipped back to Moscow as "war booty."

Last week a red and white banner across the entrance gate to East Berlin's National Gallery proclaimed: TREASURES OF WORLD CULTURE SAVED BY THE SOVIET UNION. Ninety freight cars had already been unloaded at East Berlin's Museum Island, and 210 more carloads were on the way. Already back...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!