Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Paul de Groot

Saul (Paul) de Groot (1899 - 1986) was a Dutch politician and long-time party leader of the Communist Party of the Netherlands (CPN). He was also a member of the House of Representatives for the CPN and editor-in-chief of the party newspaper De Waarheid (“Truth”).
After a purge of the political leadership by Moscow, De Groot joined the CPN party management in February 1930. Because of his activist past, intelligence, journalistic qualities and tactical insight he stood out head and shoulders above his co-directors. This and his servile fidelity to Stalin led to De Groot becoming the political secretary of the party in 1938. He also became editor-in-chief of the party newspaper Het Volksdagblad. He turned out to be a headstrong, often capricious and suspicious leader.
In October 1942, the Germans invaded the house where De Groot, who was Jewish, and his family went into hiding. De Groot managed to escape through the back door, but wife and daughter were taken to Auschwitz and killed there. It gave him a sense of guilt for the rest of his life.

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