60 Minutes Recap: $500 Million European Art & Jewelry Stolen in 20 Years (3/23/14)

60 Minutes reports on art, watch and diamond heists in Europe, Dubai and Tokyo; the New Yorker cartoons; and the Boston Marathon Bombing. In the past 20 years, thieves have stolen $500 million worth of loot. The biggest European art robbery ever, was worth $163 million. The New Yorker rejects 95% of the work of their wittiest cartoonists Roz Chast, Ben Schwartz, and David Sipress. Editor David Remnick says that he understands the cartoons when he 1st sees them, but the light sometimes goes out once they’re published. Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was identified because in the video, everyone turned left when the 1st bomb went off, and he didn’t.

Pink Panther Heists

We see security footage of cars driving into a Dubai mall, then smashing into the glass door of a shop. Then relaxed-looking men swoop in and take $3.5 million worth of jewelry. All in less than 30 seconds. In a few hours, they’re in another country.

In all, Yugoslavian thieves have stolen over $500 million worth of jewelry and art in the past 20 years. An attractive woman, who poses as a customer, surveys the shop. When she leaves, a group of men come in, sometimes in disguise, armed with guns or pepper spray.

The biggest European art robbery ever, involved $163 million of loot. The armed robbers, called “Pink Panthers”, took a Cezanne, a Monet, a Degas and a van Gogh from a Zurich museum. They’re called Pink Panthers because they’ve hidden a gem in a cold cream jar, just like in Pink Panther.

New Yorker cartoons

Morley Safer tells New Yorker Editor David Remnick that he doesn’t get the cartoon of a cat with a cat’s cradle on its paws. The other end of the string is in a mousehole. Another cat tells the cradle cat, “Have you no shame?” Safer says that his New Yorker writer-friend said that 1 cartoon is meant to be not understood. New Yorker Editor David Remnick tells Safer that he wants to keep that myth alive. The cartoon I understood and liked is Sam Gross’ masterpiece, of a dog at heaven’s gate who asks, “Is there any chance of getting my testicles back?”

60 Minutes sits in on Cartoon Editor Bob Mankoff’s Wednesday meetings with cartoonists, when he selects the 17 cartoons that make the weekly magazine. 60 Minutes observes that the wittiest ones, whose work is in most issues, are Roz Chast, Ben Schwartz, and David Sipress. It turns out that Mankoff rejects their work 95% of the time. Sipress says, “We all do…700 or 800 cartoons we hand in… We’re lucky if we sell 30 cartoons a year.” Mankoff himself has submitted 2,000 cartoons before being accepted. He is best known for his cartoon of a businessman on the phone who goes, “Thursday’s out. What about Never? Is never good for you?”

That’s our recap of 60 Minutes today, 3/23/14. Tune in for next week’s recap. Til then, please check out our 60 Minutes archive HERE.

Image Credit: 60 Minutes