The Kestrel Strategy

Bernsteinzimmer, wo es ist?

    ‘Nazi Gold, I wish I knew where it was,’ she said smiling, 'it would be like winning the lottery. Millions of dollars in gold.’ Her brown eyes twinkling as she gazed into his. She was so close if he moved his head a fraction forward their lips would meet. 'Would you hunt for Nazi treasure Andrew?’ 
    'I don't need to hunt for it Amy,' he said. 
    'Ooh rich are you?' she asked nudging him with her elbow playfully. 
    ‘Not yet no,’ he said smiling.....(The Kestrel

The priceless artefact is created out of amber, gold and precious stones is one of the greatest missing treasures of WWII.  A masterpiece of breath taking beauty, it was stolen by the invading German Army in 1941 from the Catherine Palace in Tsarskoye Selo, St Petersburg. The room was then transported by rail to Königsberg Castle where it remained on display until 1945 when the folklore, myths and legends of its whereabouts began. On many occasions hopes of finding the 'eighth wonder of the world' has flashed only to be dashed, time and time again. Ever wondered why?

The history of the Amber Room goes back to 1716 when the King of Prussia presented the Amber Room to Russian Czar Peter the Great before the room was moved to the Winter Palace in Tsarskoye Selo. It was illuminated by 565 candles whose light was reflected in the warm gold surface of the amber and sparkled in the mirrors. The detail of the design have led some to describe it as the eighth wonder of the world. The room covered about 190 square feet and shimmered with tons of amber and many semi-precious stones. The amber panels were backed with gold leaf, and historians estimate that the room was worth in excess of $142 million in today's dollars. The gesture of friendship went out of the window when Hitler invaded the Soviet Union in 1941. The room was dismantled and the panels packed into twenty-seven crates and shipped to Königsberg Castle in Germany. It is said after the air raids of January 1945 the Amber Room was lost, some say destroyed by the bombing. Some say by the fire that followed. Some say it's at the bottom of the Atlantic on a sunken ship or submarine. There are even rumors’ that the fabled Amber Room was taken back to Russia when Königsburg fell to the Soviet ground troops.Many historians and treasure hunters believe it is lost.  Their theory of justification was that the room was destroyed by fire in 1945.  Their hypothesis is correct, in part! 

The Kestrel Strategy novel theorizes that Hitler only sought German artefacts so insisted only the eighteen original panels of the Amber Room were taken from Königsberg, now Kaliningrad and returned to Berlin. The remains that were found in the cellar of the castle were from the Russian sections of the Amber Room. Where is it now?' Read the book it's a great story.
                                                                                                                                      Copyright © 2012, Colin B Leonard

Karl always wore his SS uniform a like sackcloth, a penitence for joining the German Wehrmacht against the wishes of his mother, who had promptly disowned him. He spoke both French and German and had been assigned to Wilhelm to assist with his duties in occupied France thirteen months earlier. They had traversed most of occupied Europe together right up to this point in time. The battle for Berlin raged above their heads asWilhelm snarlled at Karl through gritted teeth.  
'Listen you stupid bastard,’ he said, ‘this is the one time neither of us can afford the slightest margin of error  understand?’                                                                                                                                            
    ‘Jawohl, Herr Oberleutnant, but we have had many close calls during this war,’ said Karl sulking.
  ‘I know that Karl,’ said Wilhelm leaning in towards him, ‘believe me we will not survive this one as you well know...’

                                            (Chapter One-The Kestrel

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