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What follows may seem far-fetched. Yet I offer it to Prospect readers as a completely true account of an incident that might have come out of another century. In fact it all began just two weeks ago, one dark, wet, miserable Monday afternoon, on the way back to the wing from Lindholme’s clothing exchange store.

There was a belligerent screw on duty at one of the gates I had to pass through, who insisted that I needed a special pass to take with me a parcel of laundered clothes. For the past six months I had been passing unmolested through…

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