German war cemetery gets plaque
A senior Netherlands rabbi has overseen the placement of a plaque telling visitors to a war cemetery that it is a burial place of war criminals, including the Nazi officer who ordered Anne Frank and her family to the death camps.
Dutch Chief Rabbi Binyomin Jacobs described his “heavy feeling” after visiting the cemetery at Ysselsteyn on Sunday. For years, he has protested against German diplomats’ attendance at the annual commemorations of German war dead at Ysselsteyn, where members of the elite Waffen SS unit are buried.
Among the more noteworthy names is the grave of Julius Dettmann, the Gestapo officer who in August 1944 had sent a plainclothes
contingent to raid 263 Prinsengracht, where Anne Frank and her relatives had been hiding, before ordering their deportation to Westerbork, then on to other camps. He also ordered the execution of Dutch resistence fighter Johannes Post.
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Jacobs praised Ysselsteyn authorities, saying: “They did everything that needed to be done. That’s important, because not doing so risked making Ysselsteyn a pilgrimage site for neo-Nazis.”