3e I CHRONICLESnthe psychological motives for agnosticismnand atheism. Paul Vitz has writtennan important book which deservesnto be widely read.nKirk Kilpatrick is a professor of educationnat Boston College.n”Here Is FreenCountry”nby Myron B. KuropasnFreedom’s Child hy WalternPolovchak with Kevin Klose, NewnYork: Random House; $17.95.nDuring the 1930’s many Americansnwere enamored of the “grand and noblenexperiment” called the Soviet Union.nMovie stars, clergymen, authors, intellectuals,ncolumnists, and other Americannopinion makers traveled to thenUSSR and returned with glowing reportsnof the joys of socialism undernJoseph Stalin. Many immigrants fromnthe former Russian empire believednthese stories and some decided to returnnto their former homeland to taste thenfruits of Bolshevik labor. One suchnperson was Morris Stolar, a Jewishncommunist sympathizer living innChicago’s Humboldt Park who, in then1930’s, moved to Moscow with his wifenand two American-born children. Today,none of these children, Abe Stolar,nnow 75, is awaiting permission to returnnto Chicago. He has been waiting for anvery long time. Despite the personalninterventions of Secretary of StatenGeorge Shultz and much Americannpress coverage (the Washington Postnrecently ran a feature story describingnhis plight), Abe Stolar sits in his Moscownapartment waiting and hoping thatnsomeday he will once again walk thenstreets of Humboldt Park.nA similar fate almost befell WalternPolovchak, a Ukrainian-born youngsternwhose father wanted to return to thenSoviet Ukraine after living in thenHumboldt Park area for less than sixnmonths. Freedom’s Child is an exciting,nblow-by-blow, objective account ofnyoung Walter’s long struggle to remainnin the United States against his father’snwishes. With the help of Kevin Klosen— author of Russia and the Russians,nformer bureau chief of the WashingtonnPost in Chicago and Moscow, and nownan editor on the Post’s national newsndesk—all sides of the Polovchak controversynare presented in the words ofnthe antagonists.nOn Walter’s side were Chicago’snUkrainian American community; hisnlawyers, Julian Kulas and Henry MarknHolzer; the US State Department;nJuvenile Judge Joseph Mooney; localnNBC-TV reporter Paul Hogan;nWalter’s cousin, Walter Polowczak;nand his sister Natalie, who also refusednto return to the Ukraine. Arrayednagainst Walter were his parents, Michaelnand Anna; their ACLU lawyers,nRichard Lifshitz, Richard Mandel, andnLois Lipton; Chicago Tribune ForeignnEditor Howard Tyner; and PyotrnPrilepski of the Soviet embassy innWashington, DC.nThe Polovchak drama began whenn12-year-old Walter, protesting his parents’ndecision to return to the Ukraine,nran away from their apartment andnwent to live with Cousin Walter. Hisnparents sent the police after him andnWalter finally ended up in court.nThere, with the help of UkrainiannAmerican lawyer Julian Kulas, Walternwon his first victory. Judge Mooneynruled in favor of a MINS (Minor innNeed of Supervision) petition awardingntemporary custody to the IllinoisnDepartment of Children and FamilynServices. Asked by reporters why henrefused to go back to the Ukraine,nWalter replied: “Here is free country.”nHis words were flashed around thenworld.nYoung Walter returned to his cousin’sncare and after Julian Kulas requestednpolitical asylum for the youngnUkrainian refusenik, he was guarded,nfor a time, by federal agents. Later,nWalter was granted political asylum bynthe US State Department.nOne of the first reporters to providensympathetic coverage of the Polovchakncase was Paul Hogan of Channel 5 innChicago. He quickly learned that Walternwas Ukrainian, not Russian (asnmuch of the press had reported), andnthat his understanding of freedom wasnbased on comparative experiences asnopposed to philosophical comprehension.nIt was also Paul Hogan whonexposed the role of the Soviet embassynin putting pressure on Walter’s fathernto return with his entire family.nAll of this was too much for HowardnTyner, the Chicago Tribune corre­nnnspondent who, despite assignments innPoland and Eastern Europe as well asnnumerous meetings with UkrainiannAmericans, never really sympathizednwith the Ukrainian perspective. Professingnto be a friend of Julian Kulas,nTyner admits not “going along withnJulian’s attitude on Eastern Europenand the Soviet Union. . . . Anyway,nwhen I learned he was going to beninvolved, I had visions of super anticommunistnUkrainian emigres collaringnthe kid to get him away.” Tynernconcluded that young Walter’s understandingnof freedom was superficial.n”Between going out for a McDonald’snburger in Chicago or waiting in line fornpierogi on Lenin AUee in Lviv, henliked it better here,” Tyner argues innthe book. So concerned was Tynernwith fairness to the family that hendecided to contact the ACLU and urgenthem to serve as counsel to Michaelnand Anna Polovchak. A breach ofnjournalistic ethics? “I suppose,” respondsnTyner unconcernedly.nThe ACLU position regardingnWalter’s motives was also hostile. “Thenissue of where the parents sought tontake the kid — to Ukraine — was irrelevant,”nadmitted Illinois ACLU ExecutivenDirector Jay Miller. For Miller, thenentire incident had little to do withnfreedom from repression by a totalitariannregime; it was all “a propagandanthing” for the Ukrainian community.nHarvey Grossman, another ACLUnlawyer who worked on the case, was innregular contact with Pyotyr Prilepski, anman from the Soviet embassy whosenrank and position were those usuallynreserved for KGB agents.nThe ACLU argued that Walter’snparents knew what was best for Walternand that he should be returned to theirncustody immediately. There was littlenconcern for Walter’s feelings towardnhis parents, especially his father.nWalter’s life in the Ukraine was hardlynideal. With a mother totally dominatednby an indifferent, philandering fathernwho was more interested in makingndeals on the black market with goodsnsent by American relatives than he wasnin nurturing his relationship with hisnfamily, young Walter was raised by annadoring, deeply religious grandmothernwho always believed the family wouldnsomeday leave for America. When shendied on the eve of the family’s departurenfor the United States, Walter wasn