August 20, 2012

Words of wisdom



Tragic hero

Sir, – Your report on evidence that Raoul Wallenberg was alive after the Soviets claimed he died in 1947 (“At Wallenberg’s centennial, his disappearance remains a mystery,” August 13) confirms what numerous sightings and reports have stubbornly maintained – that Wallenberg survived in the Gulag and Soviet psychiatric prisons as late as the 1980s.

In 1985, in my capacity of chairman of the Jerusalem Raoul Wallenberg Committee, I took a sworn statement from an elderly Jew from the Caucuses region named Avraham Hanukaieff, who had been imprisoned in Sverdlovsk for Zionist activities.

Hanukaieff told me that he spent four days in 1972 in a prison infirmary bed next to a fellow prisoner who whispered to him that he was “Wallenberg, a Swede who had saved many Jews in Budapest in 1945.” The guards later ordered Hanukaieff to stop speaking with the prisoner.

I sent this statement to the leaders of the Soviet Union, but of course nothing came of it.

I am convinced that in time we shall indeed learn the truth about the fate of this tragic hero of humanity.


Sir, – “Canada to release stamp honoring Raoul Wallenberg” (August 14) refers to a similar stamp issued by the United States in 1997.

I would like to point out that the Israel Philatelic Services issued a stamp commemorating Wallenberg in June 1983. In addition, the Israel Government Coins and Medals Corporation has issued a medallion in his honor.

The stamp and the medallion are part of an exhibition our organization has presented at venues throughout the country for the past 28 years.

The writer chairs the Raoul Wallenberg Association of Beersheba