Like in Germany, the Holocaust in the Netherlands didn’t start with the mass murder of Jews—it was a gradual process. It started with a number of measures to initially humiliate the Dutch Jews.
SD agents check the identity cards of Jewish citizens on the Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal, in Amsterdam. At the beginning of January 1941, compulsory registration of Jews in the population register had been announced. Proof of registration must be carried with you at all times. To determine whether someone was Jewish, it was decided in the summer of 1941 that a large J had to be applied in two places in the identity card of the so-called ‘Volljuden.’ From that moment on, Jews could easily be distinguished from non-Jews at street checks.
Handing over of bicycles by Jews. Jews from the municipality must hand in their bicycles, including spare inner and outer tubes, no later than June 24, 1942. Signed by mayor Van Ravenswaaij.Utrecht (this is just one example, that law was in place all over the Netherlands). Anyone who has ever been to the Netherlands will know how much the Dutch cherish their bikes.
Closing of the Jewish district by raising the Magere Brug over the Amstel, in Amsterdam. On February 12, 1941, the Jewish neighbourhood in Amsterdam is cordoned off.