THE HAGUE, Netherlands (JTA) — A Dutch former cabinet minister reportedly said that world peace would be achievable if Israel’s population was forced to move to the United States.
The statement was attributed to Herman Heinsbroek, who served as the Netherlands’ minister of economic affairs in 2002, in an article that appeared Thursday in the online edition of the prestigious financial monthly Quote, based on an interview with Heinsbroek.
“It was a historical error to give the Jews their own country in the middle of Islam,” he is quoted as saying. “You’ve had nothing but war ever since and you’ve had anti-Semitism resurging, too. My idea: Give the Jews their own state somewhere in the United States and 25 years to move their state over there.”
Heinsbroek is also quoted as saying that, if implemented, his solution “will finally create, perhaps, peace in the world.”
Heinsbroek, 64, served as a diplomat in the Dutch Foreign Ministry and was posted in Istanbul, according to the Volksrant daily.
During his stint as minister, he was a member of the rightist, anti-immigration Pim Fortuyn List party. He served under Jan Peter Balkenende of the centrist Christian Democratic Appeal, who is widely considered as a strong supporter of Israel.
Earlier this month, Heinsbroek released his first novel, which is titled “Shadow Minister” and deals with intrigue in government.
In 2010, Frits Bolkestein, a former European Commissioner and ex-leader of Holland’s ruling rightist People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy, advised observant Dutch Jews to leave for Israel or the United States.
In an interview with Manfred Gerstenfeld, a prominent scholar on anti-Semitism, Bolkestein said that practicing Jews “have no future here.”