Greta Sconia’s invited party was being hosted at the famed Ritz Hotel in the sumptuous ‘Van dyke suite’ and it was revving up to be a success and as always fuelled by copious amounts of lethal alcohol when the couple arrived slightly late. The heel in fact on one of Karen’s court shoes had snapped and had delayed their arrival.
They were warmly welcomed by their hostess who immediately accompanied them both to be introduced to her favourite director.
Minutes earlier a passing nervous waiter collided with Walter splashing his silken jacket with a spray of white wine. He quickly apologised and asked Walter to remove the jacket and said he would sponge it down with warm water. Walter agreed and waited and watched as Karin was introduced to the famed film director whose name he did not know.
Karen had noticed something unusual about the man’s glittering jewellery causing her to caustically enquire of him: “Are you of the Hebrew faith?” She had in fact, being ever observant, noticed an emblem on his ring of the traditional star of David.
She then spoke quietly, saying as her face hardened in concern: “If so your race is an accursed one and the blood of millions of dead young German soldiers will be laid at the door of your race on day.”
She had decidedly declined to shake his offered ringed hand. Her friend Greta seemed surprised and embarrassed by her friend Karen’s unexpected outburst. What was going on with Karen where had this bile come from?
Soon afterwards Walter’s suit jacket was returned to him in the kitchen and with no noticeable spilt damages. He was satisfied with the repair and placed his jacket on again and it looked fine. Karin had by then walked over to the veranda with Greta. The two friends were now deep in an animated conversation. The director had walked away it seemed perplexed about what had happened. Walter then decided to circulate leaving the two women in their discussion. But he knew no one and just stood nursing a glass of wine watching and waiting for Karen to reappear. He was beginning to feel uncomfortable. Five minutes later he saw Karin stand up and kiss her friend saying an awkward goodnight. Then she went in search of Walter. After she located him she pleaded with him through tears begging: “Please darling take me back to our hotel I feel rather faint.” They then after collecting coats quickly and quietly departed. Karin offered a brief wave to Greta before they left. It was not returned.
“I never want to walk into a situation blindly like that ever again” she declared later in the taxi with tears flowing from her eyes smudging her mascara. Walter leaned over and dabbed them away with his initialled pocket-handkerchief. Then he gently kissed both of her closed eyelids comforting her with a few more selected and soothing words on their journey. Then they silently held each other and watched and enjoyed the timeless city that is the delight of Paris. It was a small compensation to both after the disastrous evening they had just departed so quickly from. Hopefully, it would not happen again Walter promised himself.
Earlier during his time previously observing the guests at the rather boisterous party, Walter had wandered into the kitchen, to search for the waiter who had repaired his jacket and to offer him a small cash remuneration. Usually an important hub of information, Walter decided to test this theory. Two of the obliging waiters were prepared to talk about the hotels they had previously been employed in. The jovial ‘sous chef’ from Venezuela had been gainfully employed several years ago in Los Angels.
He revealed that: “The film industry is riddled with the Jews control if you didn’t know because most of the important mainline studios are under their control, well according to my brother Luke, an aspiring assistant film director.”
He mentioned other aspects of the film industry in Hollywood he had noticed: “It’s a cesspit of crime and corruption” he remarked before returning to his duties in the now sweltering kitchen.
Walter thanked him as well as each of the other kitchen staff he had talked to later offering a handful of francs to each of them. Then he himself gratefully departed that hot humid kitchen.
Walter decided to later impart this useful gainful information to Heinrich when he returned to Munich. In the following month’s selected female agents were dispatched covertly to California from Germany answerable only to Heinrich. Later an active political cell was established in the music and art departments of two of the major film studios in Burbank, Los Angeles. They would be incorporated after the war into that exclusive club of German Nazi scientists. Many involved later in that shamefully Vatican/OSS/Cairo covert operation mysteriously known as “Operation Paper clip.” Many of these guilty men were later inducted and employed into the space programme at Cape Canaveral (later the Kennedy Space centre).
One distinguished Nazi aristocratic aeronautical scientist would later become a naturalised citizen of the United States and surprisingly have a useless crater named after him on the moon’s rugged bleak surface. During the war, his vile deeds were performed on his orders onto helpless slave labour men and women working and dying deep in the caves and factories of Peenemunde. This man should have been bundled up and dumped naked somehow on the moon’s bleak surface (named after him) with just a bottle of spring water to sustain him until he expired, which is more that he ever offered to his starving dying victims. Many of them nothing more than little children. He died in 1977. Inscribed on his headstone is his name and a selected Bible verse from Psalm 19.1: “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth his handywork.” How blasphemous!
Later now seated in their heated hotel suite Karen lamented to her sympathetic husband that she was so disappointed in Greta’s obvious obstinacy. Her actress friend had lovingly refused to accept any explanation of her racial views and sadly dismissed her own theories as nonsense.” I do wish Carin had been here” she remarked angrily.” She would have put her firmly in her place immediately.” Karen was now showing obvious signs of even more emotion.
Walter became alarmed and quickly suggested they visit a recommended Spanish bistro known as La Manchu situated in the 16th Arrondissement. The cuisine and company they later discovered were delightful. Karin was later reluctantly persuaded to attempt a flamenco dance with a lithe male Andalusian dancer named Enrico. And she achieved this with eventually great success. (No pictures sadly survive that I can find of that delightful Parisian evening the couple enjoyed so much).
Strangely enough on the journey home through the atmospheric streets of Paris to their hotel, they both heard to their surprise, the wail of numerous seagulls. He had previously opened the window slightly to offer her some welcomed air.
“Perhaps they are from the River Seine…maybe looking for food?” Karin suggested with her sleepy head now resting on his shoulder. And for some strange reason, Walter was reminded of the disgraced French general he had encountered some day’s ago. He speculated about the man and where he was now. Somehow the man and water seemed synonymous to his thoughts. But he could not think why nor did he try. Then they finally arrived at their hotel happy and slightly tipsy. Walter tipped the smiling one-armed doorman. And all thoughts of the disgraced diplomat perhaps suicidal slipped away from Walter’s closed mind like a greased carnival pole. As for Karen’s unpleasant altercation with her friend Greta earlier, that too was happily consigned to a distant memory locker by herself. And would stay there as far as she was concerned. Never to be discussed or mentioned ever again. Karen, of course, insisted upon that.
Several days after that disastrous occasion Karen much to her surprise read in one of the morning papers “Le Figaro” that the film director she had crossed swords with had suffered a massive cardiac arrest. He was not expected to return to the film set and his doctors insisted on a long convalescence at his home in Fairfax, Virginia.
But it seemed her friend Greta had suggested to the producers if she herself could take on the directorial duties and finish the film. After all, she said in an interview: “I directed both Chekov and Brecht at the academy and I think I’m well suited to finish the film.”
Karen immediately telephoned her friend’s hotel and happily encouraged her to pursue this ambition of hers. The two women arranged to meet the next day for a luncheon at the Ritz Hotel with Karen promising to do all she could to assist in her friend’s future film ambition. Any mention of that embarrassing and shameful row concerning the director’s ancestry at the party was not mentioned. She would, she promised, ask Walter to talk to both Heinrich and Dr Goebbels to see what he could arrange. It seems she informed Greta that the doctor had many important contacts in the film world and its distribution in cinemas throughout Germany.
Several days later it was announced in one of the trade papers that Greta Sconia would not only direct and finish the film but also edit the celluloid. The finished film was completed and on budget as well. And would later go on to win the prestigious “Palme D’or prize.” Greta always cited Karen in her memoirs for her unflinching support and inspiration and encouragement that she had offered to her in Paris and in later years. In 1955 she was awarded the Oscar for the moving film “Three Broken Cups.”
Greta Sonia was killed in a freak ski accident in Klosters in 1957. She married three times but there were no children from the marriages. She had arranged for the bulk of her fortune and blue-chip investments to be left to the leper colony at the Albert Schweitzer hospital in Lambarene Gabon in Africa. She had frequently visited and worked at the hospital as a volunteer several times and had also been preparing a script treatment for a future film concerning the hospital and the doctor’s long life. (Her will was not contested).
Both Walter and Karen were later to enjoy and recollect years later a delightful three days in that celebrated and christened the City of Light. Except for Karen, that unfortunate evening’s argument at the Ritz with that obnoxious film director she had unexpectedly encountered, all else had flowed successfully for the couple. A previously requested opportunity for the couple to visit the Mont St. Michel site in Normandy was cancelled due to Karen experiencing, of all things, an unfortunate nose bleed that prevented the couple travelling that day. The following morning they were however escorted by the German ambassador himself to visit a secret lost lake concealed deep in the atmospheric forest of Gresigne.
“Here lies the lost and sunken castle of the forgotten French King Charles XI … and now sadly only a naked turret remains to be observed” he informed them mysteriously through blue clouds of his cigar smoke as he pointed at the exposed relic.
“Rumour has it, he informed the now fascinated couple and shaking his forefinger, that the king and his crown and his beautiful queen are buried here within the sealed vaulted ruins. And it is further claimed perhaps more importantly that he and his queen once or maybe on more occasions secretly visited one of the lost Atlantis outposts.”
They both nodded at this surprising revelation. “Apparently it is today situated, it is claimed, in the Bay of Marseilles perhaps under that iconic Chateau d’if … where the treasury stateroom was once situated (see photo) and at a mere 8,000 feet deep? Or so they say.”
Walter then suggested that Karen take a souvenir photograph of the lake and the naked turret to which she complied. This news would almost certainly capture Heinrich’s archaeological interest with his well known exhaustive passion for all Atlantian legends and many others.
The next day Karen with madam Von Hoesch the German ambassador’s wife visited the “Musee del Orangerie” where a private tour had been arranged for them. Both women adored and admired as only one can, the Renoir and Monet and other masterpieces beautifully displayed before them.
Karen and Walter had been married now for nearly three years and it was a source of sadness and disappointment to them both that to date there had been no signs of pregnancy.
The couple especially Karen had feared over many months now that they might never conceive a child. And after so many false expectations had left her dejected and despondent each month. They had as a compromise frequently discussed other possible options. Maybe Karen tentatively suggested they might even discuss the process of perhaps a future adoption. Yet Walter for some reason remained hostile and curt to this suggestion when it was raised. Stating frequently and rather unkindly that he “didn’t want someone else’s child.” It was a subject they both decided was best avoided.
One morning, after they had returned from France, whilst walking in the family garden back in Munich and with clouds of snow perched perilously in the air just waiting to descend on them, Karen had broached the subject yet again with her father. He listened as he placed his arms around her saying: “I have been practising medicine a great deal longer than you have been born my darling. And I have learned and accepted that the dreams of many young couples are sadly not always realised. Perhaps there is a reason for this but who knows? Sometimes it seems to me that medicine is really in its infancy in these matters.”
Karin tried to understand most of this and silently nodded as they continued to walk. They then sat down and talked. She pulling her coat tighter around her shoulders. Then the expected snowflakes finally arrived settled in and around them both with Gus now having arrived who rested his sad face into her lap offering his right gnarled paw as his own greeting to them both. Her father continued talking oblivious as if nothing had happened concerning the advancing weather.
“And of the eventual occasion when a couple has perhaps reluctantly and finally agreed to the adoption of a child then suddenly – Voila! The woman becomes pregnant can you believe! Is it not indeed strange this cycle of fertilisation as we used to call it in medical school? But who can fully claim to understand the miracle of any childbirth when so many things can and do sadly go wrong.”
He fired up a new Cuban cigar and pulled his jacket over his exposed shirt front and wistfully recalled something that had happened a long time ago: “I remember when I was at the Lutheran seminary many, many years ago our dear theology tutor doctor Bock offered many accounts in the Bible concerning the serious and important care and responsibility for widows and orphans. I recall that in the little epistle of James (he was as you know the Lord’s half brother) admonishes quote rightly that the brethren should and must, and I quote from memory: ‘Visit the fatherless (or orphans) and widows in their affliction.’
I have always proposed that this important dictate should not just apply to Christians, but to everyone. To care and comfort them in other words.” Karen sighed and now shivering stood up and helping her father to stand up waived Gus away and suggesting with resignation: “I know papa. I do hear what you say and maybe one day we will welcome our own much-longed-for child into our lives until then we can only hope.” She looked forlornly into the distance.
Noticing her concern he said: “Never say never” hoping to reassure her helplessness as if she were a patient of his which of course she was and always had been. Yet she still seemed confused and slightly alarmed by Walter’s negativity concerning this serious and painful family matter. They then walked thoughtfully towards the house with her arm linked through her father’s. She suddenly shivered sensing there certainly was more snow coming and full pelt towards Munich. Then later as forecasted, fluttering unique flakes of snow finally descended onto the landscape and into the Auer garden settling with ease and conformity.
Walter would himself return officially to Paris in 1940 then accompanying Herman Goring and his entourage during the shocking defeat of France. He would later liaise a private meeting with Adolph Eichmann and his principle aides Alois Brunner and Theo Dannecker in Monte Carlo or Nice in late 1942 concerning the controversial ‘Wannsee’ conference.
Lt. Colonel Walter Kyper had earlier been dispatched on the personal orders from Heinrich Himmler to attend and to act only as an observer, but not to participate at that infamous conference then being held and hosted by Reinhardt Heydrich in 1942 in a leafy Berlin suburb.
There on the agenda were instructions to be discussed and hopefully approved at this chosen venue concerning the future fate of millions of Jews around the world. This would later become known as “The Final Solution” to the ongoing Jewish question. Several years ago according to the notable German historian Professor Doctor Gotrefried Grenoble (1921-2000), he had authored a study paper for the United States State Department. This is what he wrote: “In that commissioned paper, he claimed, that ‘Both Adolph Eichmann and Reinhardt Heydrich had travelled a great distance to attend this secret infamous conference. It, however, was noticed by some observers that both men seemed to be affected by continued fatigue and tiredness. Then finally all attending that infamous meeting signed or initialled the final minutes of the communiqué that had been jointly approved. Apparently only one copy survived. All other copies according to Heydrich’s orders were to be destroyed.
Apparently, an unknown seated senior S.S. officer was not required to sign nor did he even volunteer to sign the document but had interestingly an understanding of stenography or shorthand. This officer may have been I believe Lt. Col. Walter Kyper. And may have made a private copy for his own use. In fact, in 2000 an original copy was advertised on the popular ‘Craigslist’ website for $45,000 then suddenly withdrawn. No reason was ever given.
No proof of his attendance has survived to this day and cannot be confirmed. But a discussion I was able to arrange with one of the staff chauffeurs months before he died in 1961 in Dresden was that Walter Kyper was indeed there. And at several times was seen and heard on the telephone talking to someone in a low voice. This driver had indeed frequently chauffeured both Lt. Col. Kyper and his wife Karen to various important Nazi ceremonies and other social functions until 1941.
Frau Kyper-Auer had always been very kind he recalled and considerate to him and had always inquired after his family’s health. He had liked her.
Her husband usually said very little to him but just expected him to just perform his duties.
It has also been noted that S.S. Lt. Colonel Walter Kyper usually insisted or demanded that no photographs of him be taken in advance. And in all posed group pictures he stands slightly outside of the group. This is deliberate and suspicious I suggest. In fact, he was averse to all forms of publicity before it became fashionable. Walter Kyper always aided and abetted voluntarily Heinrich Himmler to eventually become an invaluable key member in the Nazi emerging hierarchy from its very conception and misdeeds. And who now needs to be summoned years after the war to give account for his role in crimes against humanity. I rest my case…” So concluded that distinguished historian in an edited prepared paper that was delivered at Yale University in 1990. (Full contents are stored in fiche box number 93261 in the State Department Library in Washington).
Then it seems within a matter of years soon after the war’s conclusion most of the selected intelligence services and other straining hounds of justice would be searching for the whereabouts of a certain shadowy and slippery S.S. Lt. Colonel Walter Kyper as described by an investigating O.S.S. officer known only as ‘Joel’ who had met him it is claimed. Then to hopefully lead to his immediate arrest, detention and prosecution for accused war crimes.
But Walter Kyper had somehow always evaded their search of him escaping arrests sometimes just by a matter of hours. Since those long wandering years, Walter had never wasted any hours in those post-war years of his life if possible but only in his survival.
He had learned long ago as he tried to rebuild his post-war life in Germany, that each new day is a gift and certainly never to be wasted.” You are only granted one life and that is all anyone deserved or indeed is offered. All other explanations or excuses were banal” he rightly reasoned. “Today is the first day of the rest of your life so don’t waste it.” He had noticed this sticker years later on the bumper of an American Ford car in Atlanta. This had become a frequent mantra to him and it seemed to make sense…so don’t waste it!!
To be concluded…..
(C) Copyright G. Patrick Battell