AMSTERDAM (JTA) — A Jewish lawyer has lodged a police complaint against an Amsterdam art gallery over the sale of copies of Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf.”
Herman Loonstein lodged the complaint earlier this month against the Totalitarian Art Gallery, the Dutch daily NRC reported Sunday.
Hitler’s book is categorized as “inciting hatred” and its dissemination has been illegal in the Netherlands since 1974.
Loonstein has called on the Dutch justice system to confiscate all copies of the book and prosecute the owners of the gallery, which also sells propaganda from the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin and from China under Mao Tse Tung.
“At a time of an unprecedented increase in anti-Semitism, it is important that a tough stance be taken against this sort of incitement,” said Loonstein, the chairman and founder of the small Federative Jewish Netherlands organization that specializes in legal action to combat anti-Semitism.
Gallery owner Michiel van Eyck told NRC, “I know that it’s officially not allowed, but I do not sell it out of ideology. It is historical material that fits the collection.”
In 2007, a proposal by then-Dutch Minister of Education Ronald Pasterk to legalize the dissemination of “Mein Kampf” in the interest of freedom of expression received strong support by other politicians, including Mark Rutte, who became prime minister three years later.