order was lifted: author Edwin Giltay
pitches his book here on stage in Amsterdam.
Subtitled in English
A general sporting three stars on his uniform, commissioning a
private spy to nose around in a commercial company. And this is not just
anyone: it’s the general’s own wife. A tribal war within the Dutch Military
Intelligence Service, with unsuspecting citizens being victimized. One
would expect such a modus operandi in North Korea, not in the Low
Countries. However, this is what author Edwin F. Giltay
experienced – he vividly describes the saga in The Cover-up General
(Dutch: De doofpotgeneraal).
In his book Mr Giltay depicts the rather transparent conduct of secret service agents
infiltrating at the internet provider where he was assigned.Initially, a spook
tried to recruit Mr Giltay as a military analyst.
At the same time however, she herself was being monitored. At the root of
this tug-of-war within Dutch Military Intelligence was the infamous
film roll of Srebrenica depicting war crimes, which was misdeveloped
by the Dutch Armed forces. The recruiting officer intended to make public
the footage on the film wasn’t at all lost – information that would no
doubt have undermined the standing of a certain triple-star general.
The Cover-up General delineates this espionage scandal.
After objections from intelligence circles, the book was banned. However, the Court of Appeal of The Hague – who studied all evidence – ruled its accuracy is not in doubt and annulled the book ban. Also, the Court of Appeal affirmed the importance of the publlication for the civic discourse on Srebrenica.
€19,50 including delivery in Holland
(in Dutch) Edwin Giltay
Epilogue Hans Laroes
banned: 21 December 2015
Ban lifted: 12 April 2016
Second, revised edition including eight
new chapters published in September 2016 by BlauweTijger
Paperback with flaps|263
Free audiobook available
for the blind and visually impaired
JANUARY 2017 INTERVIEW
‘The military has a way with intimidation’
TEXT JEROEN STAM
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN DUTCH IN GEOPOLITICAL MAGAZINE NOVINI.NL
He became entangled in a web of intrigue
and rivalry within the Dutch military secret service. Putting pen to paper,
he documented his experiences in The Cover-up
General (Dutch: De doofpotgeneraal).
The nonfiction thriller was banned by court order, but this was overruled by
the Court of Appeal in The Hague. Hence, author Edwin F. Giltay
recently published a revised edition of his book.
‘In 1998 – I
was in my mid-twenties – I applied for a job with the Royal Netherlands Navy,
and made a good impression. Thereupon their counterparts from the military
secret service tried to recruit me; one of their operatives asked me to
become a military analyst. She had infiltrated the offices of internet
service provider Casema where I was working at the
time. All the while however, she herself was secretly monitored by another
spy and this situation got out of hand completely. At the root of this
tug-of-war within military intelligence was the infamous film roll of
Srebrenica depicting war crimes. One of the factions wanted to make public
the footage on the film wasn’t at all lost, the other wanted to keep this
information under wraps.’
footage misdeveloped by the Dutch Armed Forces?
‘Working at the internet provider, said recruiter complained about
several mishaps within military intelligence. She told us the Srebrenica
footage hadn’t been lost at all. In fact, she claimed she had seen the
pictures herself. Her antagonists kept an eye on her through a spook who, it turned out, was none other than the wife of General Ad van Baal. According to my information, he had employed his spouse
as a private spy. Van Baal was the deputy commander-in-chief of the Royal Netherlands
Army when the Srebrenica drama unfolded. It would result in an unprecedented
fall from grace for him and the armed forces, should those pictures ever
surface in the public domain. We are talking about evidence of the start of
the genocide by the Serbs, at the time a Dutch
battalion was to protect Srebrenica. Although they denied it, Dutch Army top
brass was very much aware of the atrocities taking place.’
military will not have applauded publication of your book.
‘The former recruiter
started legal proceedings against me, claiming I was guilty of slander.
Apparently, I had vilified her reputation. Quite remarkable: The Cover-up General was already
available for nearly a year at that stage. While in court, she did not
produce any evidence to substantiate her accusations. She didn’t bring
forth any proof whatsoever to support her objections. The documentation
I provided, proved my story was correct.’
‘It would be an unprecedented
fall from grace for the Dutch Army should the Srebrenica pictures become
‘Still, the book was banned, which was completely incomprehensible. Such a restriction on the freedom of press is rather unique in The Netherlands. The Court of Appeal overturned the verdict resolutely, however. Thankfully, the judges recognized my book is based on facts. Indeed, no, I am not easily gagged.’
Did the Ministry of Defence ever delve into the intrigue within military intelligence?
‘On the contrary. After I had asked the powers that be to investigate the Casema affair, I was opposed in any way thinkable. I was intimidated actually. This I elaborate on in the new edition of The Cover-up General, and well documented at that. When you consider how various intelligence agencies tried to put me under pressure, how they tried to discredit me: it gives you a pretty good insight of the modus operandi of our spooks. The military has a way with intimidation, many among former service personnel can tell a tale or two about that. Once you air the military’s dirty laundry in public, you’re bound to get into trouble. My story is but one of many.’
What do you hope your book will achieve?
‘I would greatly appreciate it, should the Casema affair be investigated after all. Intelligence personnel has been responsible for illegal infiltration, intimidation, burglary and theft. And I’d like to see the dubious part General van Baal played be unravelled. An appropriate task for the Minister of Defence. Even more important: this shady affair related to Srebrenica ought to be uncovered: after all – we are talking about genocide. The government intimidation I personally encountered, scandalous though it was, is insignificant by comparison. If the military would want to try anything to put me off again, well, all efforts to shut me up have been proven unsuccessful. I’ll take them on any day.’
OTHERS ABOUT THE COVER-UP GENERAL
‘Meticulously written and well documented’
— Jan Pronk, former minister
‘Author Edwin Giltay describes down to the last detail what is wrong with our secret services, covered up by the Armed Forces, the National Ombudsman and with damaged ministers as a consequence.’ /
‘This is an important book about an important affair in which the secret service withheld evidence of war crimes, at the expense of an arbitrarily chosen but surprisingly thoughtful civilian.’
— Roel van Duijn, politician
‘If this wasn’t a true story, the book would be regarded as hilarious’
— Nieuwe Revu, Dutch opinion weekly
‘One is aware of how the Armed Forces deal with whistle-blowers: Fred Spijkers, Victor van Wulfen and Edwin Giltay’
— Jan Born, investigative journalist EenVandaag
‘In a down-to-earth writing style with attention to detail, Edwin Giltay describes in The Cover-up General the clumsy performance of two spies with poor manners, that he witnessed.’
— Haarlems Weekblad, Dutch weekly
‘I’d like to see the whole Srebrenica book be opened. The moment the government would also give disclosure of the Giltay story, that’d be a nice bycatch.’
— Hans Laroes, former editor-in-chief NOS-News
‘In The Cover-Up General nothing is what it looks like. It is almost stifling to read how intelligence services – or the general himself? – crowd around to make the life of innocent civilians miserable’ /
‘Why can’t the government just be open? It’s important that this riddle is also solved permanently.’
— Brenno de Winter, investigative journalist
‘The Cover-up General reads like a thrilling and very detailed ‘roman à clef’ in which the true names are revealed.’
— Checkpoint, Dutch veteran’s monthly
‘The Cover-up General is a shocking eye-opener on how our secret services work.’
— Philip Dröge, investigative journalist
‘People in high places trying to cover up their own mess, getting nailed by their own dirt. If this wasn’t a bloody serious case, the reader could perceive the story of Edwin as a magisterial joke.’
‘Evokes the atmosphere of Graham Greene’s famous Our man in Havana, yet situated in Delft in the offices of an internet provider ...’
— Christ Klep, military historian
‘The author describes in a compelling way the rather transparent activity of a secret agent he got confronted with at the internet service provider where he worked at the time. His report on this affair reads like a thriller.’
‘This book is characterised by the clear writing style.’
— H.E. Klaas Dijkhoff, Minister of Defence (October 2017)
‘Book recommendation! The book of the deployment of spies and the photo roll of Dutchbat 3 was first banned by court, yet is now released again so everyone can read what actually happens in the Netherlands.’
— Veteran’s organisation Dutchbat 3
IN THE MEDIA
Well over 200 articles in two dozen countries were already written about the nonfiction thriller. A selection for English speakers:
Jeroen Stam. ‘Dutch Defence Ministry keeps bumbling', Forum of EthnoGeoPolitics, Summer 2018, pp. 51-53.
Jasmin Agić. ‘Holandija prikrila fotografije mrtvih Bošnjaka iz Srebrenice’
(‘The Netherlands concealed
photos of dead Bosniaks from Srebrenica’), longread interview with author Giltay, Al Jazeera, 21 July 2018. Translation
TV item about ‘whistleblower’ Edwin Giltay in news program Hart
van Nederland, Dutch TV channel SBS6, 14 September 2017.
Filmed in the House of Representatives in The Hague. Subtitled in English.
Edwin Giltay. ‘Srebrenica
keeps haunting the Netherlands’, reportage in Forum of EthnoGeoPolitics, Winter 2017, pp. 37-41.
Žana Božinovska. ‘Холандскиот
по барање на
(‘Dutch court bans book about Srebrenica on request former spy’), Dnevnik (Macedonian daily),
28 December 2015. Translation
Mladen Kremenović. ‘Суд у
Сребреници’(‘The Hague court bans book on Srebrenica’), Politika (Serbian
daily), 24 December 2015. Translation
TV interview by Metje Blaak with author Giltay , Amsterdam channel Salto TV,
5 January 2015. Subtitled in English.
Edwin F. Giltay
(The Hague, Holland, 1970) is a freelance editor of mixed Dutch-Indonesian
descent. Mr Giltay worked as a technical writer
for IBM and as a management assistant for Deloitte. Currently, Mr Giltay edits some of the books brought out by BlauweTijger Publishing. The
Cover-up General, also published here, is his nonfiction debut.
The press can find promotion photos of
the book and press releases
in the press kit.
Would you like to approach Mr Giltay? Please, simply send an email in either Dutch
or English to email@example.com.