ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Petro Mirchuk was born in 1913 in Western Ukraine, which was occupied by Poland between World War I and World War II. After receiving his High School diploma, he studied law and political science at a Polish J. K. University in Lviv, and at the German and Ukrainian Free University in Prague, Czechoslovakia. He received his J.D. degree in 1941 from the Ukrainian Free University in Prague. In 1959 he added an MLS from Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pa., and in 1969 a Ph.D. from the U.F. University in Munich, Germany.

He has been a member of the Ukrainian underground liberation movement, since he was seventeen, and as such was imprisened six times by the Polish occupation authorities. In 1939, when Russia occupied Western Ukraine, he fled West. He returned in 1941 when the German army entered the USSR and took part in the attempted restoration of the independence of the Ukrainian nation, but was caught by the Gestapo in September, 1941. As one of the leaders of the Ukrainian anti-Nazi movement, he was sent to and held in several concentration camps until May 6, 1945 (in Auschwitz from July 1942 till January 19, 1945). His experience in the Nazi concentration camps he describes in his IN THE GERMAN MILLS OF DEATH (Vantage Press, 1976).

Liberated by the American Army, in 1952 he immigrated to the United States and was naturalized as a citizen in 1957. In the U.S., he worked at several Universities as librarian and teacher of political science. Now he is retired.

He married in 1946, and has three sons. One of them is a Ukrainian Catholic priest.

Petro Mirchuk has authored over twenty books in Ukrainian, among them the first history of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, UPA (1953, 320 pp.), the first history of the Ukrainian Liberation Movement, OUN (1968, 639 pp.) and a socio-political study of a Ukrainian uprising in 1768, called Haidamaks (KOLIIVSCHYNA, 1973, 319 pp.).

He is a member of many scientific and social organizations. He is also a member of the Society for Jewish-Ukrainian Collaboration, and an honorary member of the Jewish Identity Center, and The Chapel of Four Chaplains.


The author on arriving in the concentration camp at Auschwitz, July 1942.