Dutch news in brief, Monday 23 November 2009

23rd November 2009, Comments 0 comments

Read the roundup of today's Dutch press from Radio Netherlands.

Concentration camp diary presented to minister
Several papers report on Sunday's presentation of the concentration camp diary of Klaartje de Zwarte-Walvisch in Amsterdam.

de Volkskrant wrote: "She started where Anne Frank was forced to leave off. Klaartje de Zwarte-Walvisch, murdered in Sobibor, kept a diary so the rest of the world would know what happened".

The paper wrote that 32-year-old Klaartje started her diary on 20 March 1943, the day that she and her husband were arrested in their Amsterdam apartment by two Dutch Jew hunters. They, along with thousands of others were taken to the Hollandsche Schouwburg Theatre before being taken to Camp Vught, the only official SS concentration camp in occupied northwest Europe.

De Telegraaf wrote: "After the world-famous diary of Anne Frank, and the diary by Tilburg's Helga Deen, discovered just five years ago, another diary written by a Dutch Jew has been discovered".

Trouw said Amsterdam's Jewish Historical Museum had had the diary for some years but the author was unknown until the researchers for the television series The War discovered the book and went searching for the author.

De Telegraaf wrote "the first copy of Everything Was Destroyed was presented to Deputy Public Health Minister Jet Bussemaker in a ceremony at the Hollandsche Schouwburg Theatre; a place of brutal significance as the collection point for Amsterdam Jews".

Anger grows over toll scheme
De Telegraaf reported public anger about government plans to introduce road pricing schemes was growing.

The paper wrote the conservative VVD party has begun a protest campaign against the proposal. VVD MP Charlie Aptroot said the campaign is in response to the massive number of protests about the pay-as-you-drive scheme and has organised a petition by handing out stickers that say: Road pricing: no way!

The party said the scheme is far too expensive and far too complicated to work and the "EUR four billion set aside for the project should be spent on improving and widening existing roads".

Under the headline "Traffic chaos predicted in 2010", AD said Transport Minister Camiel Eurlings should do more to inform motorists about the record number of road repairs that are planned for next year. The paper reported that a majority in the lower house was extremely concerned about traffic chaos that has been predicted in 2010..

New children's book portraying gay and lesbian families
AD reported on the upcoming release of a new book for children of gay parents: "Growing up with two dads is a-okay,".

The paper published a photo of Jarko De Witte van Leeuwen sitting on the sofa reading a book to his children, four-year-old Arwen and her younger brother Wolf. The paper wrote the family is beaming with happiness as Arwen pointed at a drawing in the book and said: "That's me".

The book, which will be officially released on 30 November, is called Arwen and her Daddies and was written by De Witte van Leeuwen because none of the other books available portrayed a family that Arwen could identify with.

He said: "A mother pops up somewhere in all of the other books I bought to read to Arwen, but that's not a situation that is familiar to her".

De Witte van Leeuwen said the book is not only for gay and lesbian families but heterosexual couples as well because it's important to show that it is possible to have a family with two fathers.

 "It's good to let those kids know that it it's okay. Just imagine, one of those children could grow up to be gay or lesbian, this could help them feel safe enough to tell their parents".

He said an English-language version of the book will be released simultaneously in the United States although he admitted, "many arch-conservative Americans will not welcome the subject".
Vaccination for children kicks off in the Netherlands
All the papers report on vaccination day: at least one million children and their family members have been called up to be vaccinated against influenza A(H1N1) in 250 centres set up across the country.

AD wrote: "Today sees the Netherlands start its most comprehensive vaccination campaign".

Although it's not the largest vaccination campaign, Public Health Netherlands director Laurent de Vries told the paper: "It's certainly the largest challenge considering the extremely short prep time that we had. So far we've met all the deadlines".

The health ministry gave the order to vaccinate all children aged six months and above and five years just two weeks ago and de Volkskrant made it sound like a military campaign: "The fire services are delivering vaccines, the police are directing traffic, ambulance personnel are assisting, public transport authorities have laid on buses and employers are giving people the day off as the mass inoculation campaign kicks off".

Radio Netherlands / Jacqueline Carver / Expatica

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