The Long Walk

the long walkThis book by Slawomir Rawicz is a ripping good yarn which I enjoyed as a teenager in the 1960s. It chronicles the escape by six prisoners from a gulag in Siberia, and their walk to India. It appeared to be one of life’s great adventure stories and the movie The Way Back by Peter Weir is based on it. However research now indicates that Rawicz was in Ander’s Army, evacuated from the USSR across the Caspian Sea, at the time that he claimed to be walking to India. This is very disappointing.

However it does appear that this walk across the Gobi Desert and Himalayas did happen, but not by Rawicz. In 2009 Witold Glinski claimed that he was one of the men who completed the walk, and a British intelligence officer based in Calcutta in 1942 said that he had debriefed three starved men who claimed to have walked from a gulag in Siberia.

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