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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Film in the making about Polish WWII hero Pilecki

29.11.2019 01:00
A film is in the making about Witold Pilecki, a Polish WWII resistance fighter who volunteered to go to Auschwitz on an intelligence mission and who was slain by Poland’s communist rulers three years after the war, an official has said.
Witold Pilecki (1901-1948). Photo: [Public domain]
Witold Pilecki (1901-1948). Photo: [Public domain]via Wikimedia Commons

The film is being produced by the publicly-funded Polish National Foundation together with the culture ministry and the Polish Film Institute.

"The story of Captain Pilecki provides ample material for many films," Marcin Zarzecki, head of the Polish National Foundation, told public broadcaster Polish Radio on Thursday.

The film, directed by Leszek Wosiewicz, is scheduled to premiere next year, Zarzecki said.

His Polish National Foundation is financed by the country’s leading state-owned corporations.

Pilecki is remembered as "the Auschwitz volunteer" and a victim of two totalitarian systems.

In 1940, he volunteered to be captured and sent to the Auschwitz Nazi German concentration camp on an intelligence mission.

His reports from Auschwitz provided an insight into the conditions at the camp and warned the world about German plans to exterminate European Jews.

Pilecki escaped from Auschwitz in 1943. He reached Warsaw where he fought in the city's 1944 uprising against the Germans.

After the war he went to Italy and joined the Polish armed forces in the West. He then returned to communist-ruled Poland as an intelligence agent.

He was captured and executed by Poland’s communist authorities three years after the end of World War II, following a show trial in which he was charged with espionage and plans to assassinate several communist security service officials.

In 1990, he was rehabilitated and in 2008 posthumously awarded the Order of the White Eagle, the highest Polish state decoration. In 2013, he was posthumously promoted to the rank of colonel.

Earlier this year, a biography of Pilecki by writer Jack Fairweather, entitled The Volunteer: One Man, An Underground Army, and the Secret Mission to Destroy Auschwitz, was published in the United States.

Pilecki’s original 400-page Auschwitz Report was published in America in 2012 under the title The Auschwitz Volunteer: Beyond Bravery.

(gs-mk/pk)

Source: IAR