Kurt von Behr

From jdcrp-wikibase
Revision as of 10:12, 27 July 2021 by WikibaseAdmin (talk | contribs) (summary)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Kurt von Behr was born in Hannover. After the German invasion of France in June 1940, Alfred Rosenberg, founder of the Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg (ERR) appointed von Behr, a former president of the German Red Cross, to head ERR operations in western Europe from a base in Paris. On 17 July 1940, Rosenberg established the Amt Westen of which von Behr became co-director in Paris while his counterpart, Robert Scholz, remained in Berlin. In addition, von Behr served as the deputy to Gerhard Utikal, ERR’s Reichshauptstellenleiter. Until 20 February 1941, von Behr, while heading the Sonderstab Bildende Kunst (Special Staff for Fine Arts) as part of Amt Westen, he organized the transport to the Reich of numerous art objects looted from Jewish collections in France. From January 1942 until spring 1944, von Behr led the Möbelaktionen (Furniture Actions; M-Aktion) in German-occupied France, the wholesale confiscation of any movable property found in Jewish residences whose occupants were long since gone. Kurt von Behr played a peripheral role in the quest for and confiscation of the Schloss Collection. On 10 September 1942, von Behr met with his deputy, Bruno Lohse, Jean-François Lefranc, who preyed on Jewish collections for the Commissariat général aux questions juives (CGQJ), and Darquier de Pellepoix, general commissioner of the CGQJ. Lefranc offered his services to locate and denounce Jewish collections concealed on French territory in exchange for a 20 percent finder’s fee. As von Behr’s deputy, Lohse represented the ERR and Göring, while he maneuvered to maintain Germany’s interest over the Schloss Collection after its confiscation. Von Behr and his wife committed suicide with hydrogen cyanide on 19 April 1945, eight days after Allied troops overtook Schloss Banz. Literature: James Plaut, “Loot for the Master Race,” The Atlantic, September 1946 [online at: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1946/09/loot-master-race/354838/] Patricia Kennedy Grimsted, “Reconstructing the Record of Nazi Cultural Plunder. A Survey of the Dispersed Archives of the Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg (ERR),” IISH Research Paper 47. Published online by the International Institute of Social History (IISH/IISG), Amsterdam, March 2011 [online at: https://errproject.org/survey/ERR-Intro.pdf]