Jan Braakman (b. 1960) is a Dutch investigative journalist. He is the author of the Tegendraads and Klein Nederland (in Dutch) and co-author of Die jüdischen Gemeinden in Borken und Gemen (in German).
He began his career at the city newspaper Deventer Dagblad and later became senior reporter at the agricultural daily Agrarisch Dagblad.
He has reported about a wide range of issues, from agricultural world trade policy to animal disease crises. Jan has interviewed influential politicians, international farm leaders, European commissioners and national ministers.
As an author Jan specializes in regional stories in a historical context. His debut as an author of full-length non-fiction came with Tegendraads, the story of a self-willed farmer who was fatally shot by a policeman in 1949. The death of the farmer shocked the local community, not the least because he had been a war hero during World War II.
The War in the Corner is a revised version of Jan’s book Klein Nederland, which was first published in Dutch in 2010. For this book Braakman examined hundreds of dossiers in regional and national archives in the Netherlands, Germany, the United Kingdom and Canada. He interviewed dozens of sources who were close to the events during World War II. During his research he finally discovered the truth behind the arrest that led to the death of his grandfather in 1944 in the concentration camp, Neuengamme, near Hamburg.
The betrayal and subsequent death of Jan Braakman’s grandfather during the Second World War is the thread tying together this story of the Dutch village of Laren near the German border. Daring acts of resistance by locals aided the Dutch, the Jews, even Germans, as well as allied soldiers who marched through Laren on their way to liberate the Netherlands.