Author Tags: Politics

John A. Munro is a specialist in Canadian politics and founding director of the Diefenbaker Centre at the University of Saskatchewan. Having received his M.A. from UBC in 1965, he has edited six volumes of memoirs by Prime Ministers Lester Pearson and John Diefenbaker. Titles include Mike, The Memoirs of The Right Honourable Lester B. Pearson and One Canada, Memoirs of The Right Honourable John G. Diefenbaker. He also wrote Beyond the Moon Gate: Margaret Outerbridge in China, 1938-1950 (Douglas & McIntyre, Wood Lake, 1990), a study of a missionary wife's apolitical life in China that was adapted from her diaries. Munro was born in Calgary in 1938 and has taught in the Creative Writing Department at UBC. His papers at UBC Special Collections conern his writings on Gordon Churchill, John George Diefenbaker, Jack Horner, Carl Nickle, Lester B. Pearson, H.H. Stevens, and David J. Walker, plus Munro's works on Canadian External Relations, 1936-1939, the Atherton railway accident case, the Alaska Boundary Dispute, "Tai Tai", the China experiences of Dr. and Mrs. Ralph Outerbridge (including diaries, 1938-1950 and manuscripts), material relating to the publication of Beyond the Moongate and a biography of Senator David A. Croll.

[BCBW 1992] "Politics" "Missionaries"

The Holocaust Journey of Michel Meilnicki

Sixteen-year-old Michel Mielnicki was taken to Birkenau, survived a death march, worked in the slave labour camp at Mittelbau-Dora in Germany and was finally released from Bergen-Belsen. The emotional cost on both survivor and amanuensis alike is made clear in his memoir Bialystock to Birkenau: The Holocaust Journey of Michel Meilnicki (Ronsdale $19.95) which provides harrowing first-hand accounts of Birkenau, Buna, Mittelbau-Dora and Belsen.

Historian John Munro, who transcribed Mielnicki’s words, wrote, “...his depression, already clinical, became profound. I can only guess how ghastly this must have been for him. For me, his Holocaust experiences filled my dreams to the point where constant nightmares interrupted my sleep, which caused me to begin to worry about my own sanity.” Mielnicki’s story ends with a blistering indictment of the callousness of the British liberators, and his discovery on returning to Poland that no Jew was safe there. Born in 1927 in Wasilkow, a few kilometers from Bialystok in north-eastern Poland, Mielnicki immigrated to Canada where, from his home base in Montreal, he became known as “Mr. Michel”, one of Canada’s premier fur fashion designers. 0921870-77-9