Field Marshal Erwin Rommel commanded Hitlerís military might in North Africa during World War II. His exploits earned him the name of the ďThe Desert FoxĒ.† He had under his control most of North Africa and was charged with braking through Egypt, taking the Suez and moving on into India.
Rommel understood that paper money, from any country at war, was often viewed as suspect from many of the sources he would need to utilize. He did not want to have his supplies, especially gas, compromised by a lack of trust in the currency he was using. Because of this, he refused the Fuhrerís offer of Deutschmarks and insisted on gold, silver and diamonds. His wishes were honored and his move through North Africa met with success after success.
He continued his drive through Egypt until he got to the outskirts of El Alamein. General Montgomery and his British forces were determined to prevent the Third Reich from controlling the Suez and defeated Rommelís Afrika Corps. The United States, under General Patton, were landing in North Africa. Rommel, after his defeat at the hands of the British and the addition of the Americans, was forced to withdraw.
Rommel withdrew to Tunisia and then to Sicily. The allied troops did not let up and continued the attack. Rommel was order back to the European mainland to defend the western front.
Rommel wanted the remaining gold, silver and diamonds to be hidden. Italy had just surrendered, so that left the Italian mainland, Sicily and Sardinia out as possible hiding places. Corsica was still held by the Axis, so Rommel ordered the treasure be transported by submarine to Corsica and hidden there.
In April of 1943 a German U-boat landed on the east coast of Corsica. That night a crew exited the vessel and concealed the treasure somewhere in the maquis, the mountains or the bays. The crew re-boarded the ship and moved back out into the Mediterranean. An American B44 in the area got onto the U-boatís trail and sunk the vessel. All hands went down with the ship. Rommel was killed a couple of months later.†
There has been no record of anyone recovering Rommelís campaign treasure. The Corsicans believe the treasure is still guarded. Many searches had been made without success.
Perhaps related, perhaps not, is the story of the diving school established in 1961. The school was set up on the southeastern side of the island in the Gulf of Valinco. Everyone in the area was curious about a diving school that did lots of diving but had no pupils. One day the owner of the school was found dead. Shot with his own spear gun.