Harry van Bommel

Harry van Bommel
Member of the House of Representatives of the Netherlands
In office
19 May 1998  23 March 2017
Personal details
Born Henricus van Bommel
(1962-06-24) 24 June 1962
Helmond, Netherlands
Nationality Dutch
Political party Socialist Party (Socialistische Partij - SP)
Residence Diemen, Netherlands
Alma mater University of Amsterdam (MA - Political science)
Occupation Politician, educator
Website (in English) Socialist Party website

Henricus (Harry) van Bommel (born 24 June 1962 in Helmond) is a Dutch politician, anti-globalisation activist, and former educator. As a member of the Socialist Party (Socialistische Partij), he was an MP from 19 May 1998 to 23 March 2017. He focused on matters of foreign policy and the European Union.

Biography

Born in the province of North Brabant, he grew up in Heino, which is a village in the province of Overijssel. Van Bommel was a teacher of Dutch and English before entering politics, having attended the University of Amsterdam to study political science.

He joined the Socialist Party in 1986, eventually joining its executive committee overseeing students, where he remained until 1994. In that year, he was elected to the Amsterdam City Council, having been elected to the Amsterdam East district council in 1990.

In May 1998, Van Bommel became a member of the Dutch House of Representatives for the Socialist Party. Van Bommel's work as a Socialist Party member has, since 1994, included focus on educational policy and on international affairs. In the former capacity, he contributed to the "Alles Kids?" report on diminishing opportunities for youth.

In 2009, he attracted criticism for attending a demonstration against the Gaza War, where he chanted a slogan containing the word intifada; Van Bommel clarified that he understood it to mean civil disobedience.[1][2] At the same demonstration, the slogan "Hamas, Hamas, send the Jews to the gas" was chanted, which Van Bommel stated he did not hear, or he would have left the demonstration.[3]

In 2016, Van Bommel campaigned actively against the 2014 treaty of association between the European Union and Ukraine, during a referendum campaign in the Netherlands. He gathered a team of ostensibly Ukrainian people in the Netherlands, appearing on television and in the press and condemning the treaty. According to an enquiry by the New York Times, his team was in fact composed of Russian nationals or of pro-rebels Eastern-Ukraine citizens.[4]

Van Bommel's term in the House ended on 23 March 2017.[5] He quit the Socialist Party later that year.[6]

References

  1. Witt, Robbert de (5 January 2009). "Kant tikt Van Bommel op vingers na intifada-oproep". Elsevier (in Dutch). Retrieved 27 April 2011.
  2. "Van Bommel toch bij Auschwitzherdenking". De Telegraaf (in Dutch). 9 January 2009. Retrieved 27 April 2011.
  3. Liphshiz, Cnaan (15 January 2009). "Dutch MP: I never heard Gaza protesters shouting 'Jews to the gas'". Haaretz. Retrieved 27 April 2011.
  4. "Fake News, Fake Ukrainians: How Russians Tilted a Dutch Vote". The New York Times. 16 February 2017. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  5. "Drs. H. (Harry) van Bommel" (in Dutch). Parlement.com. Retrieved 8 April 2017.
  6. "SP-boegbeeld Van Bommel zegt lidmaatschap op, relatie met partij was al langer bekoeld". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 2018-08-10.

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