Ido de Haan
(Department of History, Utrecht University)
One of the persistent traits of modern Jewish history has been the attempt to create a ‘normal’ Jewish existence – to become citizens like any other citizen, a church between churches, a minority among many minorities, and a state like any other state. Time and again, this goal has turned out to be hard to reach, and the attempt maybe even futile. Generally, the failure of normalization has been explained in term of the exceptionality of the Jewish people, its chosen fate, its specific diasporic quest, the peculiarity of its emancipation, the incomparability of its persecution. What is less put into question is the normality for which it strived.. What is normal – effective, acceptable, valid or justified – differs with respect to the domain of society, or the ‘sphere of justice’ (Walzer). The selling and buying that are normal in the economy are problematic in the sphere of care, degrading in the sphere of love, and corrupt in the sphere of politics. It is the normality of the latter we are looking for in the context of this paper. Was there a ‘normal politics’ to which Jewish communities in the twentieth century in Western Europe were able to adjust, or did they fail to live up to the standards of political normality?
Put this way, the question is outrageous, and the answer seems obvious. Of course, Jewish communities were unable to fit into the dominant mode of political interaction, since that was in many cases very hostile, if not lethal towards Jews. Notwithstanding marginal phenomena that could be labeled as ‘Jewish fascism’, it is clear that the authoritarian and racist mode of politics had little to offer to the Jews of Europe. However, the normality of politics might be understood differently than the kind of politics that was understood to be the norm at a particular moment in history. Following Bruce Ackerman’s understanding of the difference between high or constitutional politics on the one hand, and normal politics on the other, we can define the latter as the peaceful negotiation of social demands, based on generally accepted rules and institutions of political interaction. High politics occurs when the constitutional framework itself is at stake. Such heated kind of politics makes the rules of engagement more fluid, and gives political interaction a revolutionary character.
Viewed from this perspective, it appears that the main ideologies which have motivated Jewish political participation in the twentieth century had a transformative, if not revolutionary nature. As David Biale argued in Power and Powerlessness in Jewish History, ‘Jewish liberals, nationalists, and revolutionaries, who differed on everything else, all agreed that the societies of Europe in their contemporary form were inhospitable to Jews. Only by changing society in some way or by changing the Jews’ relationship to it could the problems of the Jews of Europe be solved’. Paradoxically, ‘”normality” now signified social experiments, utopian ideals that had never existed’.  According to Biale, it is only in the United States, where Jews found a relatively peaceful and prosperous existence, that Jewish politics came to be based on the acceptance of, and in many cases also identification with liberal pluralism. If there ever occurred a normalization of Jewish existence and an acceptance of ‘normal politics’ as the preferred mode of political interaction, it was among the American Jewry of the twentieth century. There, secular organizations for the representation of Jewish interest emerged, which had no other ideological purpose than to serve the interests of the Jewish community, either through self-help in voluntary associations, or by organizing pressure on the state to support Jewish causes. The most important of these organizations is of course the American Jewish Committee.
On second thought, it seems an overstatement to say that such normal Jewish politics is nowhere to be found in Europe. Already in the middle of the eighteenth century, the London Committee (after 1913 Board) of Deputies of British Jews was established, which in 1836, as its first president Sir Moses Montefiore claimed, formally became ‘the only channel of communication for the secular and political interests of the British Jews’. At the end of the nineteenth century, all over Europe Jewish organizations emerged, which were secular in their structure and goals, aiming to serve social and material interests, more than the spiritual or liturgical concerns of the Jewish community. They were generally also national organizations, intended to bring together Jews from all kinds of denominational orientation, regional origin and social rank, and to represent the interests of the Jewish community as a whole in relation to the state. Examples of these organization are the Austrian Union deutsch-österreichische Juden (1885); the Centralverein deutscher Staatsbürger jüdischen Glaubens (1893), the Zentralwohlfahrtsstelle der Juden in Deutschland (1917) and the Reichsvertretung der Deutschen Juden (1933) in Germany; and in France the Conseil représentatif des institutions juives de France (1944).
As the variation in years of establishment already indicates, these organizations did not emerge all over Europe at the same time, nor in the same way. In this respect, the Dutch case is of special interest. While in most of the surrounding countries permanent organizations can be found, which aimed to represent the interest of the Jewish community, such organizations in the Netherlands were scarce, limited in scope and short-lived. It is only very recently, in 1997, that the Centraal Joods Overleg (Central Jewish Platform, CJO) was established – characterized by the untranslatable Dutch concept of ‘overleg’, meaning platform for discussion or consultation aimed at co-ordinating the work of various individuals and organizations. In this paper I will discuss the development of secular representative bodies of the Dutch-Jewish community in the century before the creation of the CJO, in order to shed more light on the long-lasting failure to establish a national organization for the representation of Jewish interests in the Netherlands.
Religious organization and political will
Two factors seem to be of central importance to explain how separate organizations emerged. The first is the extent to which pre-existing religious Jewish organizations were able and willing to play a political role. As Bart Wallet has argued in his study on the organization of the Jewish community in the first half of the nineteenth century, the Netherlands was influenced by the Napoleonic model of a consistorial organization, in which the state had a large say, and which functioned as the exclusive channel of communication between the state and the community. Until 1848, the Hoofdcommissie tot de zaken der Israeliten (General Committee for the Affairs of Israelites) had a complete authority over all twelve main synagogues, while the committee itself was part of the Department of the Reformed and other religions, and as such subject to the Minister of this department.
The constitutional revision of 1848, after which state and church were separated completely, forced a revision of the organization of the General Committee. Since the Jewish community was strongly divided over the question how to re-arrange its institutional structure, it took until 1870 to come to a decision on a strongly decentralized structure of what was by then called the Nederlands-Israelietisch Kerkgenootschap (Dutch-Jewish Congregation, NIK), next to a much smaller Portuguese congregation (PIK). A central ‘Permanente Commissie’ of the NIK was established consisting of three (and later on five) parnasim. There was no chief rabbinate, even though the rabbis of the main synagogues regularly met informally to discuss shared concerns. Yet from now on each congregation was much more independent than ever before. The separation of church and state, and the decentralized structure of the community that followed, were by itself already factors that hindered an effective representation of Jewish political interests. This was reinforced by the fact that Dutch rabbis generally came from Germany, while the leading figure who initiated the training of Dutch rabbis, Joseph Hirsch Dünner, was more interested in an orderly synagogue than in large crowds, and alienated many of the working-class Jews from the community.
As a result, at the end of the nineteenth century, the Jewish religious organizations played only a limited role in the representation of secular Jewish interests. From an international comparative perspective, the Netherlands shifted from a Napoleonic model to the decentralized structures that prevailed in Prussia and Bavaria. As Avraham Barkai and Paul Mendes-Flohr make clear, the legal standing and traditional power of the kehillot there were a ‘Hemmblock in den langwierigen Bemühingen um eine anerkannte Geseamtvertretung der jüdischen Interessen’. At the same time, the lack of a centralized religious institutional structure left ample room for other organizations to fill in the gap. In Germany this happened with the Centralverein, but in the Netherlands it did not.
This leads to a second factor, which is the willingness of the Jewish community to plead for specific Jewish interests. The extent to which the Jewish community was willing to do so seems to depend on the very complex interaction between assimilation, popular anti-Semitism, and the attitude of the state towards Jews. In the Dutch case, there was a strong tendency among the Jewish elite towards assimilation, while the Dutch state allowed separate Jewish institution to emerge. A clear example of this tendency is education. Before 1848, the Dutch state developed a system of public elementary schools based on an undefined (although largely Protestant) Christian morality. The orthodox Protestants and Catholics who wanted a more explicitly confessional school, were allowed to establish such schools at their own cost. Yet the Dutch government agreed with the elites within the Jewish community that separate and publicly funded Jewish schools were required, not only because the Christian basis conflicted with the Jewish faith, but also because the Jewish proletariat needed to be educated in Dutch citizenship, first of all by replacing Yiddish with Dutch. However, after 1848, when the position of the private confessional schools became even more precarious, the Dutch-Jewish elite did not side with those in favor of separate confessional schools, but opted instead for the public elementary school.
In short, while the Dutch state created ample opportunities for Jewish self-organization, Dutch Jews refrained from following the example of orthodox Protestants and Catholics to create their own ‘pillar’ within Dutch society. Maybe this can be explained by the lack of challenge – it was too easy to serve the interests of the community, since the state was already willing to acknowledge special interests. But the lack of desire among Jewish elites to plead for special Jewish interests probably also stemmed from their liberal conviction that individual ‘Bildung’ was the only way out of the ghetto, while stressing the Jewishness of the community was an invitation to anti-Semitism. A similar perspective was predominant within the socialist movement, in which an increasing number of the Jewish proletarians participated after 1900. As one of its leaders, Ed. Polak – brother of the famous diamond trade union leader Henri Polak – argued in 1918 during a manifestation on ‘peace and the Jewish question’: ‘In our country there is no room for a specific Jewish organization. Within the SDAP [Social Democratic Labor Party] Jews are well respected comrades.’
This unwillingness to create more permanent bodies to represent specific Jewish interests continued even until the Holocaust made it clear that Jews had other problems than the rest of the world – to put it mildly. In 1943, a Commissie voor advies voor Joodsche aangelegenheden was established in London to advice the Dutch government in exile on Jewish affairs. Their members stressed the temporary nature of the committee: ‘It was the action of the enemy, which had made the interest of Dutchmen with equal rights into a temporary specifically Jewish interest.’ Moreover, they justified the establishment of the committee by referring to the danger that otherwise Dutch Jewish interests would come to be represented by the World Jewish Congress, which would aim to turn the Dutch Jews into a ‘gequalificeerde minoriteit’, a specified minority within the Dutch nation.
International solidarity and Zionism
While there was definitely room to create a Dutch-Jewish representative body, the willingness to do so was generally lacking. However, there was an important alternative impetus for the creation of secular organizations for the representation of Jewish interest, in the form of international scandals and opportunities. In response to the surge of anti-Semitism in the wake of the Damascus affair of 1840 and the Mortara affair of 1858, the Alliance Israélite Universelle was established in 1860 in France, and four years later also in the Netherlands. Its Dutch chair, Samuel Sarphati, was also the president of the Portuguese Israelite congregation, and very active in various protests against discrimination of Jews elsewhere in Europe. Among other things, Sarphati started a successful lobby together with the Dutch-Jewish liberal MP Michael Henri Godefroi against a proposed commercial treaty with Switzerland, where Jews had no rights whatsoever.
Another important occasion for Jewish activism occurred at the end of the First World War, when the persecution and flight of Eastern European Jews to the West was responded by an international campaign to support them. In anticipation of the impending peace negotiations, a large crowd assembled on 17 February 1918 at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw to demand the recognition of civil right for Jews all over the world, minority rights for Jews in Eastern Europe, and the right of migration to Palestine. After the conference, a petition with the same demands was signed by 46,578 people – around seventy percent of the Jewish community, thus creating a clear instance of the representation of the Jewish community speaking with one voice.
Again in the 1930s, Jews in the Netherlands responded to international threats, this time to the much more frightening rise of Nazism in neighbouring Germany. Immediately after Hitler’s rise to power, a Comité voor Bijzondere Joodse Belangen (Committee for special Jewish interests, CBJB) was established to give information about German Nazism and the abuse of Jewish rights in Germany. On 29 March 1933 it organized a meeting in Amsterdam, attended by 20.000 protesters, which the Dutch Jewish press considered a ‘magnificent indictment by the Amsterdam Jewry’. After the declaration of the Nuremberg Laws, it organized another mass meeting, this time also attended by non-Jews, ‘united by a single idea of pure humanity’, as David Cohen, initiator of the CBJB, professor of classical languages and parnasim in the Permanente Commissie, stated. While Cohen left the task of chairing the CBJB to his friend and owner of a large diamond factory, Abraham Asscher, he himself led the Comité voor Joodse Vluchtelingen (Committee for Jewish Refugees, CJV), which he had established to take care of the refugees from Germany. At the helm of this committee he had to steer between the Dutch Jewish community, which feared the arrival of Jews from the East, whose presence might provoke anti-Semitic sentiments, and the Dutch government, which did not want to be burdened by the care for too many refugees. It tried to limit its responsibility by closing the borders and also by making the Jewish community accountable for the relief for refugees, by charging it for 1.2 million guilders for building of the refugee camp in Westerbork. In 1942, this camp became the Durchgangslager Westerbork, the final stop of the Dutch Jews before their deportation to Auschwitz and Sobibor.
Cohen was not only a typical representative of the Amsterdam Jewish bourgeoisie, but in his strong Zionist conviction also characteristic of most of the Jewish activism. The Nederlandse Zionisten Bond (Dutch Zionist Federation, NZB) was established in 1899, soon to be followed by a Dutch section of the Jewish National Fund (1901), a Zionist newspaper (De Joodsche Wachter 1905), student union (NZSO, 1908), and a youth movement (JJF, 1920). In 1911 the NZB accepted a Mizrahi section within its organization, while there was also a Dutch section of the Jewish Territorial Organization ITO. Attempts to establish a section of the socialist Zionist organization Po’alei Zion proved more difficult, yet succeeded finally in 1933.
While the attitude towards Zionism of the rabbinate was generally negative, it received support from chief rabbi Dünner, as well as from prominent civil leaders like Cohen and Asscher. In terms of membership, the Zionist organizations were among the largest Jewish organizations in the Netherlands. Its support stemmed not so much from the fear of anti-Semitism, but much more from the self-esteem Zionism engendered. As explained on a Zionist meeting in the Amsterdam Bellevue theatre in 1929 by Ed. Polak – the same who in 1918 rejected separate Jewish organizations: ‘We are no longer the people who sneak bended along the shadows of the houses (thundering applause). We will not abide, we will not bend. The times have changed and we have changed.’ However, its wide appeal was also one of the weaknesses of Dutch Zionism, as the abundance of organization made cooperation rather complicated. Moreover, Zionists were torn between the desire to prepare for aliyah and the responsibility, and also the immediate and urgent opportunity to serve the interest of the Jews in the Diaspora.
The strong Zionist presence among Jewish activist continued after 1948. Even though part of the leadership left for Israel, the interests of the Jewish state became one of the two focal points for collective Jewish action – the other being the Holocaust. Again, the Dutch Gentile society seemed to offer a very hospitable environment for such activism. While the Dutch government was tardy in its recognition of Israel, the Gentile population soon showed a strong support for Israel. During the Six Days War, Dutch civil servants had expressed their solidarity by contributing a small percentage of their salary, and in 1974 the Netherlands were the only country next to the USA suffering from the oil boycott by the Arab states in protest against their support for Israel. At the same time, some people in the Jewish community feared the initial enthusiasm was waning. Apparently with the help of the Israeli embassy, the Centre for Information and Documentation on Israel (CIDI) was set up in 1974 to defend Israeli interests in the Netherlands. Since then, the CIDI has become one of the main channels for the representation of Jewish interests, not just as it is related to Israel, but also with respect to signs of anti-Semitism and the neglect of Jewish rights. One such occasion was the re-emergence of the debate on material restitution of Jewish losses during the Holocaust in the middle of the 1990s. With the collaboration of the CIDI, representatives of the main religious and social organizations (NIK, PIK, the Liberal congregation, the Zionist Federation and the Jewish Social Work) founded the CJO to coordinate their efforts to receive restitution from Dutch banks and insurance companies as well as from the Dutch government. It was the culmination of a century-long Zionist activism in the interest of the Dutch Diaspora.
The Dutch Zionists failed to create a national Jewish organization at the moment when it seemed most likely such an organization would emerge, that is, in 1945. The Holocaust had not only almost completely destroyed the physical presence of the Jews in Europe, but it has also dishevelled the organizational structure of the Jewish communities. In West-Germany, the Zentralrat was established in 1950, after long-winding and heated discussions among different factions of the survivors within the German-Jewish community. While the Zentralrat could be viewed as a continuation of the Centralverein, which had been abolished in 1938, the Conseil représentatif des institutions juives de France (CRIF) was a new phenomenon in the French context, where Jews had not before been organized on any other than religious terms. However, also the CRIF was not created ab ovo, but a continuation of Jewish resistance organizations, and moreover, an alternative for the Union générale des israélites de France (UGIF), established in 1941 by the Vichy government with the support of prominent French Jews, who thereby hoped to be able to prevent the worst. Also in France, difficult debates ensued between the re-established Consistoire, and the various political orientations among French Jewry as well as the many foreign Jews on French soil. However, both in France and West-Germany, a central secular organization emerged to represent the interest of the community as a whole. In a sense, the Jewish community structure in both countries came to resemble the British model of the Board of Deputies.
In the Netherlands, the attempts to create such an organization failed. In 1944, when the southern part of the Netherlands was liberated by the Allies, Jewish survivors started on their own initiative various local support organizations. On 7 January 1945, a number of them met in Eindhoven and decided to coordinate their work in the Joodse Coordinatie Commissie (JCC), named after a committee with the same name established in December 1940 by the suspended president of the Supreme Court, Lodewijk Ernst Visser, and abolished by the Germans in 1941. By choosing this name, the JCC of 1945 made clear it was opposed to the Jewish Council, established by the Germans in 1941 and, according to many survivors, guilty of collaboration. As one of the leaders of the JCC, Bram de Jong declared, ‘The higher one’s position in the Jewish Council, the lower it will be in our organization’.
After the liberation of the northern part of the Netherlands, a debate ensued on the reconstruction of the Jewish community in the Netherlands. A prominent role was played by the leadership of the JCC, who were all convinced Zionists. In 1945, they had to make up their mind, whether to put all their energy in the migration to Palestine, or to contribute to the reconstruction of Jewish life in the Netherlands. Although the NZB was the first reconstructed Jewish organization after the Holocaust, its leadership decided that they had to give priority to the reconstruction of the community in the Netherlands before they could continue their Zionist agenda. And not only that, but they also decided to give up their previous stance not to cooperate with Jewish religious organizations, and even took the position that only under the umbrella of the NIK a revival of the Dutch Jewish community was viable. However, such reconstruction was only possible on the condition that the NIK accepted a wider orientation than the religious orthodoxy that had dominated in the pre-war NIK. This turned out to be an illusion. After long-winding talks it became clear there would be no consensus between the representatives of the NIK and of the two smaller communities of the Portuguese PIK and the Liberal Jewish community (LJG).
Thus, in 1946 the NIK was re-established on its old footing, yet in a much more centralized form than before. Due to the disappearance of most of the smaller congregations, the NIK leadership engaged in a drastic, and according to many, also rather insensitive re-organization of the mediene, which estranged many of the remaining Jews there even more from the NIK. Moreover, the rabbis of the NIK were still not prepared to play a more public role, not only because of their focus on religious affairs, but also because they were convinced they had little to expect from the Gentile society. As a result, the NIK failed to play a more pronounced political role in the post-Holocaust world.
There was one organization after 1945 that did play a more prominent role and in fact became the institutional core of the representation of Jewish interests in the post-war Netherlands. This was the Joods Maatschappelijk Werk (Jewish Social Work, JMW). This was a continuation of the work of the JCC, aimed to help Jews who returned from the camps or from their hiding places within the Netherlands. Its main resources came from foreign Jewish organizations, the most important of which was the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. In comparison to its contribution in 1945 of more than 400,000 guilders, the support by the Dutch government of 19,000 guilders was very limited.
The JMW stood in a long tradition of tsedaka, which was one of the main concerns of the Jewish community, given the fact that the great majority was extremely poor and often depended on poor relief in order to survive. However, the position of the JMW differed from that of pre-war institutions in its structure and scope. While the NIK failed to house all orientations within the Jewish community, the JMW did actually bridge the differences between the various parts of the community, even though the JCC failed to turn the JMW into an organization with authority over all other Jewish organizations. Moreover, the JMW presented itself in its definitive founding document not only as an organization for care and relief for the poor, ill, and weak members of the community, but also representative of all Jews who had suffered from the Nazi persecution.
In the 1950s, the JMW limited its work to the care for individual victims, and focused only on the material consequences of persecution. But after 1965, it increasingly came to stress the psychological effects of persecution. The social workers of the JMW started to voice their objections to the ungenerous and bureaucratic way in which the Dutch government responded to the traumatic consequences of persecution, and protested in an open letter to the Dutch government in 1970 against the system of financial support for victims of persecution. Instead of the economic argument of earning capacity, they argued that subsidies for victims of persecution had to be based on the recognition of their suffering. After a series of protest organized by JMW, among other things a dramatic public hearing in the Dutch parliament, the Dutch government issued in 1972 the Wet Uitkering Vervolgingsslachtoffers (Law for Support of Victims of Persecution, WUV). In the execution of the law, the JMW again played a central role.
Despite its centrality and importance in the post-war world, the pivotal role of the JMW was never explicitly acknowledged, let alone that it was formally accepted by the other Jewish organizations as its exclusive representative. And while on many occasions, of which the creation of the WUV is the most telling example, the Dutch government treated the JMW as the most important representative of the Dutch-Jewish community, it never rose to a position that can be compared to the Zentralrat, the CRIF, or the Board of Deputies. In fact, the creation of the CJO introduced a period in which the JMW becomes less important. On the one hand, its main clientele, the first generation of survivors is almost gone. On the other hand, Jews of a younger generation seem to depend less on the JMW, not because the support for the so-called second generation was removed from the WUV in 1994, but also because younger Jews often reject the exclusive identification with victimhood.
In the end, there are many reasons why the Jewish community lacked a central organization. One is the lack of a political will to do so, a second the reluctance of the religious leaders to play a more prominent role, and a third the pivotal, yet by its very nature ambivalent contribution of Zionists to the representation of Jewish demands. Yet there is another aspect that becomes clear from a comparison with both Germany and France at the crucial moment in 1945. In both cases there was a strong pressure of the authorities to come up with an organization that could act as intermediary between the state and the Jewish population. In the Netherlands, the Dutch government did not put such pressure on the Jewish community.
There might be two reasons why this was not the case. The first is that the Dutch government acted on the assumption that it was undesirable to treat the Jews differently from all other Dutchmen, and therefore rejected the establishment of a body that might plead for any special interests. Another reason might be that it continued to play its strategy of divide and rule, by which it had used the committees for specific Jewish interests (CBJB) and for Jewish refugees (CJV) before the war to make the Jewish community accountable for the support of German Jews. Sidelining the NIK, which refused responsibility for anything else besides the spiritual wellbeing of its members, it accommodated another part of the Jewish elite in order to shift the burden to the Jewish community. This might also be the case with the JMW, which soon came to depend on the department of social work, and thus came into the same position as the Hoofdcommissie in the first half of the nineteenth century: in control of the community, yet subject to the state.
 Bruce Ackerman, We the People, Vol 1: Foundations (Cambridge MA 1991).
 David Biale, Power and Powerlessness in Jewish History (New York 1986) 132.
 Geoffrey Alderman, Modern British Jewry (Oxford 1998), 47-48; see also David Feldman, ‘Jews and the State in Britain’, in Michael Brenner, Rainer Liedtke and David Rechter (eds.) Two Nations. British and German jews in Comparative Perspective (London / Tübingen 1999), 163-184.
 Bart Wallet, Nieuwe Nederlanders. De integratie van de Joden in Nederland 1814-1851 (Amsterdam 2007).
 Avraham Barkai and Paul Mendes-Flohr, Deutsch-jüdische Geschichte in der Neuzeit IV Aufbruch und Zerstörung 1918-1945 (München 1997) 82.
 Quoted in Evelien Gans, De kleine verschillen die het leven uitmaken. Een historische studie naar joodse sociaal-democraten en socialistisch-zionisten in Nederland (Amsterdam 1999) 54.
 See Gans, De kleine verschillen, 571.
 J.CH. Blom and J.J. Cahen, ‘Jewish Netherlanders, Netherlands Jews, and Jews in the Netherlands, 1870-1940, in J.C.H. Blom, R.G. Fuks-Mansfeld and I.Schöffer (eds.), The History of the Jews in the Netherlands (Oxford/Portland 2002), 230-295: 276.
 David Cohen, Zwervend en dolend. De Joodse vluchtelingen in Nederland in de jaren 1933-1940 met een inleiding over de jaren 1900-1933 (Haarlem 1955), 90 and 289-299. See also Jo Michman, Hartog Beem and Dan Michman, Pinkas. Geschiedenis van de Joodse gemeenschap in Nederland (Ede / Antwerpen 1992), 152-157.
 Quoted in Gans, De kleine verschillen, 79.
 Jay Howard Geller, Jews in Post-Holocaust Germany, 1945-1953 (Cambridge 2005), 83-89.
 Anne Grynberg, ‘Après la tourmente’, in: Jacques Becker and Annette Wieviorka (red.), Les Juifs de France de la Révolution Française à nos jours (s.l. 1998), 249-286: 250.
 See Paula E. Hyman, The Jews of Modern France (Berkeley [etc.] 1998) , 180-191.
 Quoted in Isaac Lipschits, Tsedaka. Een halve eeuw Joods Maatschappelijk Werk in Nederland (Zutphen 1997) 66.
 Brasz in The History of the Jews; Gans, De kleine verschillen, 587
. The membership of the NIK, still 19,500 in 1947, started to decline to 12,133 in 1951, to 9,372 in 1971 and 5,820 in 1991. At the same time, the Liberal and Lubavitscher communities grew larger in this period, yet over 70 percent of the 30,000 (or 40,000 if you include non-Hallachic ‘father-Jews’) Jews currently living in the Netherlands have no religious orientation. Philip van Praag, Demografie van de Joden in Nederland (Assen 1971); Joop Sanders, ‘Opbouw en continuïteit na 1945’, in: J. Michman, H. Beem & D. Michman, Pinkas. Geschiedenis van de joodse gemeenschap in Nederland (Ede/Antwerpen/Amsterdam 1992), 228-268: 237; F.C. Brasz, ‘Na de Tweede Wereldoorlog: van kerkgenootschap tot culturele minderheid’, in: J.C.H. Blom, R.G. Fuks-Mansfeld & I. Schöffer (eds.), Geschiedenis van de Joden in Nederland (Amsterdam 1995), 349-403; 5: C.M. Berman, Herstel en verlies. De reconstructie van het Nederlands Israëlietisch Kerkgenootschap. MA Thesis University of Amsterdam 1995; see also R.J. Spitz, Een rest keert weer.... Aspecten van het na-oorlogsch Jodendom (Amsterdam 1946).
 Ido de Haan, Na de ondergang. De herinnering aan de Jodenvervolging in Nederland 1945-1995 (The Hague 1997).
 Lipschits, Tsedaka, passim.
 Ido de Haan, ‘The construction of a national trauma. The memory of the persecution of the Jews in the Netherlands’, in Netherlands Journal for Social Science 34 (1998) 2, 196-217.
 Hannah van Solinge and Marlene de Vries (eds.), Joden in Nederland anno 2000. Demografischprofiel en binding aan het Jodendom (Amsterdam 2001).