Gunner Witriol and the Colonel’s Braces

On leave in Tel Aviv in December 1941, my father, Joseph Witriol, bought a humorous Hebrew periodical called Tesha Ba’ Erev (Hebrew: תשע בערב, Nine in the Evening). He read a piece in it that he thought would be worth translating into English for publication in Parade, the Army’s Middle East weekly magazine.  He assumed (naively perhaps) that this was an original Hebrew story and his (i.e Joseph Witriol’s) translation was indeed published  in Parade in due course . But what Joseph Witriol had innocently translated from Hebrew into English was actually an unacknowledged translation of an original English story, published in Lilliput in August 1941.

He related this tale in Also Lived, his autobiography (handwritten, pages 143-145) and in more detail in a short story competition organised by the Anglo-Palestinian Club in about 1951, Maurice Edelman being the judge. My dad had kept the original Lilliput article, so it only remains for me to track down the copy of Parade featuring Joseph Witriol’s translation in order to compare the two versions.

January 1 2015 update: Following my first visit to the British Library with a Reader Pass, I ordered and scanned my father’s original article from Parade, the Middle East Weekly for MEF in WWII.