He was a thin, pale boy, with long, wavy hair and a profile as delicate as a girl's. He appeared to be about eight years old. When the authorities at Austria's Wagna refugee camp tried to question him, he could only stare at them with round, uncomprehending eyes. At last his data was entered in the records: "Name—unknown; parents—unknown; place of birth—unknown; height—141 centimeters. Identifying features: scar on chin; scar on belly. Deaf and dumb."

That, plus the fact that he had been picked up crossing a bridge on the Yugoslav border, was all that the authorities knew or could...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!