(February 3, 2022 / JNS) The European Jewish Congress is asking the U.S-based publishing house HarperCollins to pull a book they said contains an “incendiary claim” that a Jewish notary told the Nazis where Anne Frank and her family were hiding during the Holocaust.
“In our view, the publication … has deeply hurt the memory of Anne Frank, as well as the dignity of the survivors and the victims of the Holocaust,” EJC president Moshe Kantor wrote in a letter to HarperCollins CEO Brian Murray on Feb. 1, according to Reuters.
HarperCollins released the English-language edition of The Betrayal of Anne Frank: A Cold Case Investigation by Rosemary Sullivan on Jan. 18.
The book suggests that Arnold van den Bergh is the main suspect who told the Nazis in August 1944 about the secret annex in Amsterdam where Frank and seven other Jews were hiding. Upon discovering the hideout, Nazis deported the Jews to concentration camps. The young diarist later died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp at age 15.
Sullivan’s book details a six-year investigation by a retired FBI agent into how the Nazis found the hideout. However, researchers have criticized the book’s findings, and the Anne Frank Fund said the investigation was “full of errors.”
The EJC, which represents 42 national Jewish communities in Europe, called on HarperCollins to distance itself from the book’s “potentially incendiary claim … at a time when anti-Semitism, and the denial and distortion of the Holocaust, are on the rise.”
Dutch publisher Ambo Anthos stopped its printing earlier this week and apologized “to anyone who might feel offended by the book.”
The Amsterdam-based publishing house said: “We await the answers from the researchers to the questions that have emerged and are delaying the decision to print another run.”
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