Slavomir Rawicz Message Board
Cornelius Hechter posts on 3/29/2008 1:02:26 AM
Regarding Richard's question.
I realise that you may have meant why hasn't the 90 year old Polish gentleman said something about Rawicz's plagerism until now? Firstly, his English is not really such that he would be tuned into what was going on round about him, in terms of books and information. So it was quite a number of years after initial publication that he found out about it. Also he is a very Christian man and knows that it would be extremely embarrassing and unkind to Rawicz's family to expose him. Also, how could be prove such a claim? He is wise enough to know that such a thing is costly, time-consuming and very stressful. He has decided to leave the matter.
I wrote to the Rawicz family about this matter and the reaction of one grandson was extremely unpleasant. He even threatened me with legal action if I did anything about this story. So I think that it is best to leave sleeping dogs alone. Nothing would be gained by exposing the Rawicz family to any more revelations. Let them grieve in peace.
Cornelius Hechter posts on 3/28/2008 2:02:16 PM
He has lived in England since the 1940s and holidays with his daughter in Cornwall. His English is not particularly good even yet so the manuscript he offered to Rawicz was in Polish.
Richard posts on 3/28/2008 12:18:17 PM
Where has he been the last 50 years ?
Cornelius Hechter posts on 3/28/2008 10:05:19 AM
A little, 90 year old, almost blind, Polish gentleman holidays in Cornwall, England, each year. Many people have met him and spoken to him about 'The Long walk.' He claims to be the original writer of a series of notebooks and diaries which detailed his trip from Siberia to India during the Second World War. He was accompanied by others, with some decent equipment for long land trips and did the journey at a different time of year to Rawicz and in several stages, resting for weeks at a time in towns and villages. The whole walk took rather longer that of 'The Long Walk.'And a slightly easier route too. He gave the notes and diary to Slavomir Rawicz who then used it for his book without permission. His story was somewhat eggagerated by Rawicz, for dramatic effect. For example the original story has no yettis and contains less of the absurdly dramatic exploits of crossing deserts waterless and climbing the Himalayas in the winter time. He showed the notebook and diaries to Rawicz in the early 1950s. Rawicz didn't return them and said there was no book in it but then colaborated with the ghost writing journalist. Rawicz was able to conceal and adjust much of the material from the journalist as the writing was all in Polish. The dates were altered to fit in with Rawicz's own particular history-which explains the oddity of crossing the mountains in winter. It was made more dramatic by the ghost writer and thus Rawicz became a best selling author.
The little Polish gentleman has no axe to grind, does not even feel vengeful towards Rawicz. He merely wants to be left alone. Any details he is asked about he is willing to give and quite freely. He can prove where he was during the war and hasn't lied about anything which is more than can be said for Rawicz. The original manuscript, lost forever sadly, while it maybe not so epic as 'The Long Walk' contains a more believable version. It was probably also very impressive. And it happens to be the whole truth, which 'The Long Walk' clearly is not.
Confused/Astounded posts on 3/27/2008 1:22:28 PM
My father was Polish (Lithuanian) I believe. So was his companion Marion. Others on his journey were Joe and Stan - obviously names were Anglicised. I know Stan's original first name was unpronouncable and stan came from his middle name - Stanislav. They all left India for England. Marion lived in Blackburn, Stan in Knarborough just outside Nottingham and Joe somewhere in Lancashire. My father didn't stay in England long because he went to Scotland to Edinburgh University to study medicine. After getting his degree he worked in a hospital in Bolton for a couple of years then studied tropical medicine at Liverpool and moved to Botswana.
I now live in Denver Colorado and would love to talk to you. How do we do that?
keith posts on 3/26/2008 12:45:38 PM
to Confused and astounded. I understand your reluctance to give your father's last name. Was he Polish Latvian - Yugosslavian or? Did he go to England to live as many did who left Russia either by escape or amnesty? His fellow escapee who you talked a lot about their journey, what was his name and nationality? Can you contact his wife and get additional information? Are you in the United States or England? I would love to get more information about your father's heroic journey.
I live in Los Angeles but am travelling to London in April for more research specific to this book and story. thank you.
Confused/Astounded posts on 3/24/2008 9:04:22 AM
My father escaped from Siberia, crossed the Himalayas and ended in India. I don't have any more detail than that. I think it was more that he followed a similar journey than he was a companion on Slav's journey but I don't know. His name was Eugene and there was a Eugene in the book but it didn't sound like my father. (Last names didn't match at all). The companion of my father's journey, that I met, was very talkative about events and I believe his wife is still alive. I am trying to find her for more information.
Keith posts on 3/20/2008 1:05:52 AM
Confused and astounded... I ama researcher on the Long Walk. I owuld love to get more details of your father's escape. There are more escapees, many came thru Afghanistan, if you read some of the meassages earlier you will note that 4 Poles have been recorded who arrived in India, their names can be gotten from records of the Polish Embassy files frim India that are now at the Sikorski Museum in LOndon (google the address)
I am curios are you saying that your father told you bascially the same story as the Long Walk and the book confiremd it? Or did he have a similar experience? And what was his journey from to to where? If India do you know what route he took? I look forward to your response. Keith
Abdool-K. posts on 3/19/2008 10:05:18 AM
I just read the "Long Walk" and the opinions people proposed. 1) It may not be possible to remember, especially: foods given by friendly villagers, I am not sure how such memory will be during such deadly walk. 2)I read the book "high exposure (but not in details), you will be frozen at the "Himalayas" instantly, for even those with coats and food barely survived. 3)This is a true story, but the adjectives may be over qualifying the nouns. 4)There is nothing that the brain cannot think of when it comes to "escape" 5)He'' had wrote a story about the "Long Walk", his friends would have thought about that too. 6)Routes taken may not be accurate, but seeing some phone lines across the "Gobi", I am not really sure. Perfectly written...all readers feels it.
Brian Hughes posts on 3/11/2008 9:25:42 AM
You could always contact the agents, and they may be able to forward any details to the family.
Click Here for Messages:
1 - 10
11 - 20
21 - 30
31 - 40
41 - 50
51 - 60
61 - 70
71 - 80
81 - 90
91 - 100
101 - 110
111 - 120
121 - 130
131 - 140
141 - 150
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the posters.