AMSTERDAM (Aug. 25)
A soon-to-be-published book about a Dutch Jewish woman who betrayed scores of fellow Jews to the Nazi Gestapo during World War II is receiving considerable advance publicity here.
Ans van Dijk, who was executed for her crimes, had originally worked in the underground against the German occupiers, but following her arrest, helped the Gestapo.
Van Dijk won the confidence of many Jews by promising to provide them with hiding places. Instead, she turned them over to the Gestapo, who deported them.
Van Dijk was the only Dutch woman and is believed to be the only Jew executed after the war for treason. She was hanged on Jan. 14, 1948 at the age of 43.
The book is written by Koos Groen, who has authored a previous book about Dutch traitors.
Groen said that others who betrayed even more people were not executed for their crimes.
Only 39 death sentences for war crimes were carried out in Holland after the World War II. Other war criminals were given life sentences which were later commuted to 20 years and even further reduced.
Groen, who is not Jewish, believes that van Dijk was given the maximum punishment because she was a lesbian and because she was physically unattractive. He also believes that a certain amount of anti-Semitism was at play, with authorities anxious at the time to let it be known that there had been Jews who were traitors as well.