As usual on waking I turned on the radio this morning and tuned in to the BBC news programme, I love hearing about Britain, its tangled politics and knowing that I need not get upset or angry about it. It is a source of great merriment as the party leaders jockey for position in the upcoming election. This morning a headline on a different subject caught my attention.
My Father was imprisoned during the last war in Starobielsk by the Stalinist Russians. He was one of the lucky ones, one of the very few, he survived, damaged, and bearing the tremendous guilt of surviving when his friends and compatriots did not, but he survived.
A kind thoughtful, gentle and wonderful father, he remained tormented throughout his life by his experience in Soviet Russia. In 1939 he was a young officer in the Polish Army captured by the Soviets and sent to prison camps in what became know to us as Katyn – the massacare in the forest. Polish film director Andzrej Wajda made an emotional film about Katyn in 2007 that gives a good feel of what it must have been like. For years my father quietly fought for recognition of the massacare denied also by the Britih government
Sadly my father never lived to see a ‘Free Poland’ or Soviet admission of guilt or British admission of Soviet guilt, but today he would have a smile of contentment and jutice on his face as finally after decades of denial the Russians and Poles for the first time will jointly mark the anniversary of the massacare now 70 years ago.
BBC news link: BBC news report on Katyn Massacre
Sadly the world has not learnt from this and similar experiences polititians are still, as former British Cabinet Secretary Robert Armstrong famously said “Economical with the Truth”