Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "Poland" ...

  • Citizen 865: The Hunt for Hitler’s Hidden Soldiers in America

    Through insider accounts, Justice Department documents and research in four countries, Citizen 865 chronicles the setbacks, failures and great successes of a small team of federal prosecutors and historians that spent decades working to expose a brutal group of Nazi war criminals living in the United States. In 1990, in a basement archive in Prague, two American historians made a startling discovery: a Nazi roster from 1945 that no Western investigator had ever seen. The long-forgotten document, containing more than 700 names, helped unravel the details behind the most lethal killing operation in World War Two. In the tiny Polish village of Trawniki, the SS set up a school for mass murder and then recruited a roving army of foot soldiers, 5,000 men strong, to help annihilate the Jewish population of occupied Poland. More than 1.7 million Jews were murdered in fewer than 20 months, the span of two Polish summers. After the war, some of these men vanished, making their way to the U.S. and blending into communities across America. Though they participated in some of the most unspeakable crimes of the Holocaust, “Trawniki Men” spent years hiding in plain sight, their secrets intact. In a story spanning seven decades, Citizen 865 details the wartime journeys of two Jewish orphans from occupied Poland who outran the men of Trawniki and settled in the United States, only to learn that some of their one-time captors had followed. A team of prosecutors and historians pursued these men and, up against the forces of time and political opposition, battled to the present day to remove them from U.S. soil.
  • Driven to death by phone scammers

    It started with a call from Jamaica and ended in a suicide in a Tennessee basement. In between, Albert Poland Jr. had sent tens of thousands of dollars to the man on the phone promising millions. At 81 and suffering from dementia, Poland had fallen victim to a lottery scam that costs thousands of Americans an estimated $300 million annually -- and has turned deadly in both countries.
  • The Smartest Kids in the World

    America has long compared its students to top-performing kids of other nations. But how do the world’s education superpowers look through the eyes of an American high school student? Author Amanda Ripley follows three teenagers who chose to spend one school year living and learning in Finland, South Korea, and Poland. Through their adventures, Ripley discovers startling truths about how attitudes, parenting, and rigorous teaching have revolutionized these countries’ education results. In The Smartest Kids in the World, Ripley’s astonishing new insights reveal that top-performing countries have achieved greatness only in the past several decades; that the kids who live there are learning to think for themselves, partly through failing early and often; and that persistence, hard work, and resilience matter more to our children’s life chances than self-esteem or sports. Ripley’s investigative work seamlessly weaves narrative and research, providing in-depth analysis and gripping details that will keep you turning the pages. Written in a clear and engaging style, The Smartest Kids in the World will enliven public as well as dinner table debates over what makes for brighter and better students.
  • Nazi Past

    It was a sensational find by AP reporters David Rising and Randy Herschaft _ a suspected Nazi war criminal living in the United States, hiding in plain view for more than six decades. More than just a low ranking foot soldier, suspect Michael Karkoc was an officer who commanded a combat company responsible for civilian massacres, and a founding member of the SS-led Ukrainian Self Defense Legion _ and had never before come across authorities' radar. In an eight-month investigation with reporting in more than a half dozen countries and documents in five languages, the two were able to put together evidence so solid that it has led to criminal investigations in Poland and Germany, and not officially confirmed investigations in the United States and Ukraine, with Germany already recommending that prosecutors pursue murder charges against Karkoc. Rising and Herschaft were able to prove Karkoc lied to American officials when he immigrated to Minnesota in 1949, saying he never served in the military during the war _ which has been enough in similar cases for a Nazi war crimes suspect to be deported. But the investigation went much deeper, with the two uncovering details from eyewitnesses, wartime documents and Cold War-era archives firmly establishing not only that Karkoc's unit massacred civilians, but that he specifically gave the order to attack a village in which more than 40 men, women and children were gunned down and burned in their homes.
  • Extraordinary Rendition

    "The film 'Extraordinary Rendition' explores the truth about CIA rendition and secret detention and sets out to explain not only the extent of US involvement in torture, but also why this program was carried out. It also reveals how rendition continues."
  • The PZU Game

    The multi-billion dollar privatization of Poland insurance company PZU has raised questions. "Polish postcommunists and Dutch businessmen of unclear past" took over the company. The story focuses on the situation of Grzegorz Wieczerak, a PZU president who was accused of embezzlement. The evidence against him had been gathered by a company hired by people attempting to control PZU. The charges were eventually dropped, prompting Wieczerzak and his attorney to launch an investigation of their own.
  • A Heartless Doctor

    "A young cardiac surgeon from the Bialystok clinic wanted to take revenge on the head of the ward. He arranged a plot with two criminals and several policeman from the department against corruption, although the latter was an honest man."
  • Starachowice Leak: SLD Deputy Gave Warning of Police Raid

    "Sejm Deputy Andrzej Jagiello (SLD) warned his colleagues in Starachowice local government who had affiliations with a local criminal gang that the police were planning to detain them and the gang members. Jagiello was referring to information obtained from another SLD member, Deputy Zbigniew Sobotka who is a vice minister of internal affairs and administration overseeing the police.
  • Medicines for Millions of Dollars

    "In the first text 'Medicines for Million Dollars' we exposed a corruption proposal made to an American pharmaceutical concern. Then we followed with texts bringing to light suspicious developments involving closest associates of former Minister of Health Mariusz Lapinski -- notably Lapinski's political office chief Waldemar Deszczynski and Vice - minister of Health Aleksander Nauman who was responsible for medicines supply policy, including the registration and placing of medicines on refundable medicines lists. (Several weeks before our first release the prime minister appointed Nauman the chairman of the National Health Fund, an institution which is the sole administrator of the health insurance system's money.)"
  • Secret bank accounts of former PZU bosses

    From the questionnaire, "Three people were behind massive financial in the largest Polish insurance group: Grzegorz Wieczerzak, (PZU Zycie) and Wladyslaw Jamrozy (PZU), and Andrzej Perczynski aka Andrew Northen. Before Rzeczpospolita's publications involvement in this affair was unknown. He helped two chairmen transfer millions of dollars to secret bank accounts, some of which are maintained in Jersey. Rzeczpospolita succeeded in finding out what trust funds had been set up for purposes of this coup, what money rerouting mechanism had been employed, and how much money had been siphoned off."