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Poland: Her heroes and her traitors


isthatu2 4 | 2,704
28 Aug 2011 #61
I would hope so,yes,seeing as its one of "the great lies" ,that we all tend to buy into during wartime,that "we" are fighting to preserve our women and children.

If you are going to adopt a platoon mascot,fair enugh,but you have the kid as out of harms way as possible,even if that is hiding behind a rock 10 feet further back than you,if you follow? You dont send them on risky missions.You feed them,cloth them and in return they keep the fire going,fetch water ,darn your socks etc,not go off jaunting around in no mans land dressed up as a milk maid.......ffs, since when has being percieved as a young girl been a good defence against russian soldiers? (sad faced wink emoticon pending)

But,then again,I always defend the use of teenagers in the Warsaw uprising on the grounds that the enemy they faced didnt make any distinctions between children and adults,combatants and non combatants.

So,yes, one to debate at length,but not needed in this thread.
boletus 30 | 1,366
28 Aug 2011 #62
Yes, wow. I came across this story by pure accident.

Be careful, Pawian, about procreating yet another myth. This story does not hold any water in many places but I will just concentrate on his supposed command of the auxiliary aircraft carrier USAT Ganandoc.

As far as I know, there is no record of USAT Ganandoc anywhere on the internet, with the exception of Mr. Wesołowski's WWW page - as well as in the numerous copies of his article published on the web. There is, however, a record of a Canadian merchant marine vessel of that name, originally sailing the Great Lakes, and then taken over in 1942-1946 by Aluminum Company of America and converted to bauxite carrier.

A single statement "Refitted at Mobile, Alabama then to Europe as an aircraft transport vessel" could not be corroborated by anyone so far.

answers.google.com/answers/threadview?id=579120

An incomplete, yet very long list of US Army Transport ships can be found here, on wikipedia page, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Army_Transport.

Sadly, there is no USAT Ganandoc on that list. A vessel that supposedly carried aircraft from Halifax to Liverpool, participated in Murmansk convoys, and in invasion of Normandy? Give me a break.

But the most damning evidence about authenticity of USAT Ganandoc comes from "NavSource Online: Escort Carrier Photo Archive", navsource.org/archives/03/001.htm The photo of the supposedly USAT Ganandoc, placed on the Wesołowski's web page, for example here - memoriesofwar.com/veterans/wesolowski/default.asp

actually represents the USS Long Island (AVG-1, later ACV-1 and CVE-1), with cargo and planes stowed on her flight deck. That photo was taken on April 27, 1944. See the picture NS0300105 on the NavSource web page.

Either the papa or the son Wesołowski stretched the truth quite a bit here - this could be called a vessel identity theft.

Embellishment of someone's otherwise interesting or even heroic life by some extra nonexistent "facts" is nothing new. But it always amazes me why one would do that and it makes me ask: Why? Weren't you hero enough? Why do you need extra adornments?

A very similar example with photo theft can be found in the book "A man called Intrepid", by William Stevenson. The book is about Canadian war hero Sir William Stephenson, hailed as the greatest spymaster of the Second World War. But the author of the book - with the blessing of the hero - credits Stephenson with a key role in acquisition of a German Enigma machine in 1939; the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich in Prague in 1942; the attack on the Pourville radar station during theDieppe raid in 1942, etc. They are all bogus.

I am looking at the picture of the supposed Czech assassins being trained in the Stephenson's Camp X, near Oshawa, east of Toronto. They stand around a model of part of Prague where the Heydrich's assassination would take place. This is one of the seven photographs, supposedly discovered in wartime secret archives, and placed in the book.

Well, actually, this particular picture is a copy taken from MGM's film "School for Danger", released after the war. I am looking at a copy of several frames from that movie and cannot stop laughing out loud. You may find this and many other interesting stories in the 1998 book by Nigel West "Counterfeit Spies. Genuine or Bogus? An Astonishing Investigation into Secret Agents of the Second World War".
OP pawian 176 | 14,299
28 Aug 2011 #63
=boletus]
Either the papa or the son Wesołowski stretched the truth quite a bit here - this could be called a vessel identity theft.

Another wow.
Thanks for such thorough investigation. Are you sure of what you are saying?

=boletus]Either the papa or the son Wesołowski stretched the truth quite a bit here - this could be called a vessel identity theft.

Do you suggest, judging by that vessel identity theft, that the whole heroic story of Wesołowski is fake?
boletus 30 | 1,366
28 Aug 2011 #64
Thanks for such thorough investigation. Are you sure of what you are saying?

I have no reason to doubt the authenticity of "USS Long Island", as shown in NavSource Online. There are few dozens photos of her taken during the period 1941-1944 as a military vessel and few taken later during her commercial service after the war. They are all well documented and dated. I have also no doubt that the pictures from the Wesołowski's web page and one of the pictures of "USS Long Island" are exactly the same - not just similar, maybe taken from different angle, or with different cargo; no, they are exactly the same. So what would be your conclusion?

It would be inconceivable that Wesołowski the Senior would ever mistake the picture of "USS Long Island" by his beloved "USAT Ganandoc". So if he passed this picture to his son as "USAT Ganandoc" than he lied. But if this was a handiwork of Wesołowski the Junior - for whatever reason, such as embellishment - than the Junior lied. In either case this does not look good.

Do you suggest, judging by that vessel identity theft, that the whole heroic story of Wesołowski is fake?

I really do not know. The story may be a mixture of truth and falsity. I have many doubts, but I am by no means a self appointed champion of the Wesołowski case.

I have done some more research on Wesołowski and Ganandoc.

Wesołowski's original story, and the direct and indirect variations on the theme, describe the vessel Ganandoc variously as USAT Ganandoc or USS Ganadoc - an auxiliary aircraft carrier, carrying aircraft and supplies "through Halifax in Nova Scotia, across the Atlantic to Liverpool, England and serving as part of protective convoy against enemy aircraft and submarines." ... "After extremely lucky years on the Atlantic and Murmansk patrols the Ganandoc was assigned to duty with the invading flotilla assembled for the invasion of Normandy."

The Ganandoc is mentioned in the Larson's monograph (see below) not as an "auxiliary aircraft carrier" but as a "flat top shuttle ship" - a coastal ferry transporting small number of aircraft from crude oil terminals - where tankers or freighters had been bringing them across the Atlantic - to their final debarkation harbours. Larson states that Ganandoc and two other such small vessels were bareboat chartered, so it is very likely that the Ganandoc had been chartered by US from the Government of Canada and the two of them (a Canadian and an American ships) are actually the same vessel.

So, even though it is quite probably for Stefan P. Wesołowski to command a flat top shuttle ship in civilian capacity, it appears that he was never in command of an American aircraft carrier (auxiliary or not), and calling him a Hero of two nations (memoriesofwar.com/veterans/wesolowski/default.asp) is certainly a big exaggeration. As I said before - embellishments and adornments are there for no good reasons.

As for Ganandoc combating aircraft and submarines during convoy duties across Atlantic and to Murmansk - this seems to me as a sheer imagination of Mr. Wesołowski.

The Army's Cargo Fleet in World War II

The following are the excerpts from:
The Army's Cargo Fleet in World War II, 283/2, Monograph #18, prepared by Mr. Harold Larson, Office of the Chief of Transportation, Army Service Forces, May 1945,

dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA438107&Location=U2&doc=GetT RDoc.pdf

While in the past most airplanes shipped overseas have been carried on tanker decks, ZEC-2 and ZEC-5 [3] vessels carry increasingly large numbers of aircraft both in the Atlantic and in the Pacific.

However, mention should also be made of three small ships in coastal service for the Transportation Corps in the United Kingdom. These are the so-called flat top shuttle ships. They have a flat wooden deck, built above the main deck, upon which airplanes are stowed.

These craft transport newly arrived airplanes to various processing points that may be as far distant as 100 miles from the port of debarkation, thus facilitating prompt unloading of vessels on the spot, and making unnecessary the movement of the airplanes by truck. These aircraft shuttle ships, all operated on bareboat charter[2], are the JULIUS H. BARNES, the GANANDOC, and the SORELDOG [1][1a]. See the page 106-107.

[1] The SORELDOG was recently lost through enemy action. On these aircraft shuttle ships compare the remarks of Col. R. M. Hicks, ChiefS Water Division, OCT, in the processed proceedings of the Port and Zone Conference at Chicago, Illinois, 6-9 July 1944, p. 7.

[1a] SORELDOG or SORELDOC? If chartered from Dominion of Canada then the latter name is more probable.

[2] Bareboat charter: A bareboat charter is an arrangement for the chartering or hiring of a ship or boat, whereby no crew or provisions are included as part of the agreement; instead, the people who rent the vessel from the owner are responsible for taking care of such things.

In a bareboat charter no administration or technical maintenance is included as part of the agreement. The charterer obtains possession and full control of the vessel along with the legal and financial responsibility for it. The charterer pays for all operating expenses, including fuel, crew, port expenses and P&I and hull insurance. [Wikipedia]

[3] ZEC-2 and ZEC-5 vessels :
ZEC-2 type freighters, which have specially altered as aircraft cargo carriers
ZEC-5 - specially designed aircraft cargo ships for use in Pacific, first delivered in early 1945

Patterson's vessels with names ending in "doc" - Dominion of Canada

Between the years of 1927 and 1929 Swan Hunter was building 6 single-screw steamers for "Paterson Steamships Limited" of Fort William, Ontario, Canada. Those ships were named:

Lachinedoc - built 1927
Novadoc - built 1928
Sarniadoc - built 1929
Ganandoc - built 1929
Farrandoc - built 1929
Mandoc - built 1928
...
All their ships were named for Ontario cities, shortened of course, followed by doc for Dominion of Canada. The only city that comes to mind is Gananoque, Ontario which is on the St Lawreence River near Kingston.

forums.nebusiness.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=2860&start=0
Ganandoc:
Engine Builder Swan Hunter
L 252.8'
B 43.4'
D 17.9 '
Gross tons 1924

JOURNALS OF THE SENATE OF CANADA

JOURNALS OF THE SENATE OF CANADA, FIFTH SESSION OF THE NINETEENTH PARLIAMENT, 8-9 GEORGE VI, A.D. 1944-45, VOLUME LXXXIV, OTTAWA,
archive.org/stream/JSCe84_1944-45_uoft
210. Return showing:
1. Under whose name the following vessels were registered in August, 1939, and on August 31, 1940, 1941, 1942, 1943, respectively, named Bricoldoc, Canadoc, Cartierdoc, Collinadoc, Coteaudoc, Farrandoc, Fort Wildoc, Ganandoc, Hamildoc, Kenordoc,

Kingdoc, Lachinedoc, Lavaldoc, Law-renoedoc, Mantadoc, Mondoc, Neivbrundoc, Novadoc, Ontadoc, Portadoc, Prescodoc,Prindoc, Qwdoc, Sarniadoc, Saskadoc, Soodoc, Soreldoc, Thordoc, Torondoc, Troisdoc, Vandoc, Welkmdoc [Id numbers elided for simplicity - Boletus].

2. Which of the said vessels, if any, were requisitioned (a) for use by the
Government of Canada, or any Board or Crown company under authority of
the Government of Canada; what compensation was paid and to whom, for
same, per diem, per month or otherwise; (b) by the Canadian Shipping Board
acting as agents for other than Canadian authorities?

3. Which of the said vessels were purchased by the Government of Canada,
and what amounts were paid or contracted to be paid for each vessel, showing
date of purchase or acquisition, and date or terms of payment, and under what
act or statute the said vessels were requisitioned or purchased?

210a. Return showing:

1. Having reference to the acquisition of the following six ships from the
Patterson Steamship Company, viz., Coteaudoc, Farrandoc, Ganandoc,
Lachinedoc, Soreldoc, and the Wellandoc, how was the valuation arrived at?

2. Was it by arbitration? If so, who was the arbitrator?

3. If by direct negotiations, who acted, (a) for the Patterson Steamship
Company; (b) for the government of Canada?

4. Having reference to Return No. 210, were the following seven Canadian
ships, viz., the Mondoc, Novadoc, Portadoc, Prescodoc, Sarniadoc, Torondoc,
and the Troisdoc, reported as lost by enemy action, under charter to the govern
ment of Canada or to the government of any of the united nations? If so, to
whom were they chartered, and by whom was such chartering negotiated?
OP pawian 176 | 14,299
29 Aug 2011 #65
I have done some more research on Wesołowski and Ganandoc.

Boletus, you impress and scare me at the same time with your research. :):):)

Ooops, I didn`t realise that a single hero story can be so complicated. :):):):)
boletus 30 | 1,366
29 Aug 2011 #66
Boletus, you impress and scare me at the same time with your research. :):):)

:-)
With all that archives publicly available it is harder to spin a bogus story nowadays. Just after the WWII the counterfeit spies stories flourished mostly for this reason that they were hard to verify or prove that they were bogus indeed. Even the most ridiculous story would quickly proliferate - as long as it was quoted often enough - usually by authors of equally improbable stories: "I quote you you quote me".
OP pawian 176 | 14,299
31 Aug 2011 #67
I believe that Andrej Potiebnia, a Ukrainian officer in the Russian tsarist army, wouldn`t object to me putting him in this thread as a Polish hero.

I ran into his name looking through the photos from Ojców National Park.

The grave of 65 heroic insurgents fallen during the January Uprising in 1863.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/January_Uprising

One of them was Potiebnia - he died in the battle with Russian troops at Pieskowa Skała :

January_Uprising

At the very foot of the rock from which the castle rises, the tomb of the January Insurgents is located. It was at the foot of Pieskowa Skała that General Marian Langiewicz's troops of insurgents took on the Russian army, on 4th March 1863. The mortal remains of the insurgents who fell in the battle were brought here from Skała in 1953 and interred beneath a granite tombstone. Amongst those killed was Andrzej Potiebnia, a Ukrainian revolutionary who fought alongside the Polish insurgents as a volunteer.

He was 25 years old. Romantic, idealistic. Like a Pole.

Potebnya

Wacław Krzeptowski - a Highlander who collaborated with Nazi Germans. A tragic figure. Some historians claim that by betraying Poland he tried to save his Highland compatriots from Nazi repressions. Others contradict and perceive him as blatant traitor.

thenews.pl/1/9/Artykul/57207,Goralenvolk-Hitlers-Highland-c ollaborators-revealed-in-new-book
A new book exploring the wartime collaboration of Poland's infamous Goralenvolk (Highland Folk), is set to arrive in shops across the country.
Goralenvolk was a concept invented by the occupying Nazi regime just weeks after the invasion of Poland in September 1939.
Nazi authorities set out to persuade inhabitants of the southern Podhale region that they were not Slavs, but descendants of wandering German tribes.

sobieski 107 | 2,128
23 Oct 2011 #68
The entire Blue Police. Traitors every one of them. What makes them different from the Vichy Milice anyway?
The NSZ and its Świętokrzyżka brigade. They preferred to make peace with the nazis, to be able to kill Jews. Patriots?
isthatu2 4 | 2,704
23 Oct 2011 #69
The entire Blue Police.

Not true re "entire", many were working for the underground.
RetroDog
23 Oct 2011 #70
Franciszek Zubrzycki ...
Wroclaw_666 1 | 47
24 Oct 2011 #71
What is your opinion about Zbigniew Brzezinski ? Is it a hero or a traitor ?

Situation here is quite complex, he was sentenced for death in Poland, I really don't know how looks his law status for the moment in Poland.
boletus 30 | 1,366
24 Oct 2011 #72
Situation here is quite complex, he was sentenced for death in Poland, I really don't know how looks his law status for the moment in Poland.

Pardon? The same Brzezinski, who was decorated with White Eagle Order (Order Orła Białego) (1995)?
Who received Doctor Honoris Causa from three Polish universities and from Polish National Defense Academy (1990,1991, 2000, 2002)?

You must be kidding. Sentenced to death? On what grounds? He was never a citizen of Polish People Republic. But go on, explain, I will gladly learn something new. And by the way, he was in Warsaw few days ago. Easy catch!

Are you sure you are not thinking about Ryszard Kukliński?
Wroclaw_666 1 | 47
24 Oct 2011 #73
Are you sure you are not thinking about Ryszard Kukliński?

I must admit, I have made a mistake, of course I meant Ryszard Kuklinski, sorry.
OP pawian 176 | 14,299
24 Oct 2011 #74
I really don't know how looks his law status for the moment in Poland..

The guys is dead and his status is closed. His grave is in Powązki Merit Cemetery in Warsaw.
Wroclaw_666 1 | 47
25 Oct 2011 #75
Around 50 min before your post, I posted that I made mistake and the person I meant was Kuklinski. Brzezinski is still alive as Wikipedia says...

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zbigniew_Brzezinski

Kuklinski is dead, so his status is closed and history will justice him, in my personal opinion, he was a traitor...
gumishu 11 | 5,603
25 Oct 2011 #76
Kuklinski is dead, so his status is closed and history will justice him, in my personal opinion, he was a traitor...

in my personal opinion your logic is pretty deficient - I'm sure you would still like to live under communism
Ironside 50 | 10,939
25 Oct 2011 #77
The NSZ and its Świętokrzyżka brigade.

why don't you post your name making such accusations - coward !
PWEI 3 | 612
25 Oct 2011 #78
Which accusations? Stating that the NSZ were rabidly anti-semitic scum who considered murdering Jews to be as important as fighting the Nazis and that their Holy Cross Brigade collaborated with the Nazis is purely making statements of historical fact. As is stating that the NSZ kidnapped and turned over to the Nazis Jews who were in the High Command of the AK.
Ironside 50 | 10,939
25 Oct 2011 #79
historical ?If you call NKVD fabrications - historical fact, then in that sense your pure fantasy trip is historical .
PWEI 3 | 612
25 Oct 2011 #80
And which fabrications would those have been? The ones which the AK itself recorded at the time?
Wroclaw_666 1 | 47
26 Oct 2011 #81
in my personal opinion your logic is pretty deficient - I'm sure you would still like to live under communism

Everyone who has different opinion than you is wrong ?:)

If you are sure that I want to live under communism, when you don't know me, you should try to bet in Lotto...

R. Kukliński betrayed people who he had worked with, that's all.
gumishu 11 | 5,603
26 Oct 2011 #82
R. Kukliński betrayed people who he had worked with, that's all.

you know some people worked with Hitler - if any of them some day defected would you rejoice or send them in front of a firing squad - if you were caught up in some evil practices does it make sense to stay loyal who you are with in these practices (like being in mafia) - capsisci?

maybe you are just a simple guy who will just cover for your friends whatever they do - sure you can call it loyalty and even honour - I call it tribalism and the lack of percepiton of higher morals
retroDog
26 Oct 2011 #83
@Breslau_666
He stayed loyal to Poland.
And what's a problem with betraying traitors? I would do the same.
gumishu 11 | 5,603
26 Oct 2011 #84
and the guy had plenty of courage to do what he did - I don't know if I would ever be that courageous
Wroclaw_666 1 | 47
26 Oct 2011 #85
you know some people worked with Hitler - if any of them some day defected would you rejoice or send them in front of a firing squad - if you were caught up in some evil practices does it make sense to stay loyal who you are with in these practices (like being in mafia) - capsisci?

I don't know anyone who worked with Hitler :) The truth is that if you join to some organisation, you are aware of the consequences. Neither Hitler associates nor any coloner from Polish Army were forced to be decission person in the top of the authority. Doesn't matter if you are in Army or mafia or government or anything other. If you betray, you are a traitor... That's my opinion.

maybe you are just a simple guy who will just cover for your friends whatever they do - sure you can call it loyalty and even honour - I call it tribalism and the lack of percepiton of higher morals

Dear gumishu... this thread is not about me, so don't judge me if you don't know me. I found you are very aggressive to me, it's your only reaction to persons who have other opinion than you ?...
gumishu 11 | 5,603
26 Oct 2011 #86
If you betray, you are a traitor... That's my opinion.

if you betray mafia you are a traitor - and well you should be killed prefferably by the police - or sentenced to death for your filthy deed by an official tribunal - it's your own logic

btw I think you only have an opinnion on that matter because you're addicted to having opinnions :)
Wroclaw_666 1 | 47
26 Oct 2011 #87
He stayed loyal to Poland.
And what's a problem with betraying traitors? I would do the same.

The problem is more complex I think, he shared secret info from one superstate to another... Look, if there is any person who shared American info to USSR, is he a hero or traitor ?:)

Take a look calmly isn't it depending on position of view ? I'm pretty sure that the opinions about traitors and heroes would be completelly different if USSR still exists and if the position of the USA is weaker :)

Isn't it ?
retroDog
26 Oct 2011 #88
Breslau_0
Where is your loyalty? Are you loyal to stronger?
There were lots of people supportig him wgen USSR was stil strong.
they were just afraid to speak.
The difference is that I'm not afraid to speak about it (in part thanks to him) and I'm not afraid that SB or KGB will knock at my door.

So, no, you are wrong.
gumishu 11 | 5,603
26 Oct 2011 #89
this is called relativism in case you didn't know
Wroclaw_666 1 | 47
26 Oct 2011 #90
Breslau_0
Where is your loyalty? Are you loyal to stronger?

I'm loyal to Poland... in any case, if Poland is strong or weak...

And where is your loyality retroDog_0 ?

There were lots of people supportig him wgen USSR was stil strong.
they were just afraid to speak.

It's true, but has no connections with Kuklinski betrayal...

The difference is that I'm not afraid to speak about it (in part thanks to him) and I'm not afraid that SB or KGB will knock at my door.
So, no, you are wrong.

Maybe I'm wrong, maybe not... Nowadays ABW can knock your door :) I think methods are comparable, maybe not such brutal as in the communism times.


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