The Dutch government in exile

queen-wilhelmina-broadcasting

The Dutch government in exile , also known as the London Cabinet () was the government in exile of the Netherlands, headed by Queen Wilhelmina, that evacuated to London after the German invasion of the country during World War II.It was established on May 13 1940.

Prior to 1940, the Netherlands was a neutral country, generally on good terms with Germany. In May 1940 Queen Wilhelmina escaped to London; the Dutch government under Prime Minister De Geer would follow a day later, after the German invasion.

Dirk_Jan_de_Geer

The government was established at Stratton House in the Piccadilly area of London, opposite Green Park.

1024px-A4_Piccadilly,_near_Green_Park_-_DSC04259

Initially their hope was that France would regroup and liberate the country. Although there was an attempt in this direction, it soon failed, because the Allied forces were surrounded and forced to evacuate at Dunkirk.

The government-in-exile was soon faced with a dilemma. After France had been defeated, the Vichy French government came to power, which collaborated with Hitler.

ap_350932320767-37dd9c8ea78c9bc5854226e0de1a0706bed55d83-s900-c85

This led to a conflict between De Geer and the Queen. De Geer wanted to return to the Netherlands and collaborate as well. The government in exile was still in control of the Dutch East Indies with all its resources: it was the third largest oil producer at the time (after the US and the USSR). Wilhelmina realised that if the Dutch collaborated with Germany, the Dutch East Indies would be surrendered to Japan, as French Indochina was surrendered later by orders of the Vichy government.

Because the Netherlands’ hope for liberation was now the entry of the US or the USSR into the war, the Queen dismissed her prime minister, De Geer, and replaced him with Pieter Sjoerds Gerbrandy, who worked with Churchill and Roosevelt on ways to smooth the path for an American entry.

PS_Gerbrandy_1941

Aruba and Curaçao, the then-world-class exporting oil refineries, were important suppliers of refined products to the Allies. Aruba became a British protectorate from 1940 to 1942 and a US protectorate from 1942 to 1945. On November 23, 1941, under an agreement with the Netherlands government-in-exile, the United States occupied Suriname (sometimes referred to as Dutch Guiana) to protect the bauxite mines.

ns-area

An oil boycott was imposed on Japan, which partially triggered the Pearl Harbor attack.

In September 1944, the Dutch, Belgian and Luxembourgish governments in exile began formulating an agreement over the creation of a Benelux Customs Union.

Flag_of_Benelux.svg

The agreement was signed in the London Customs Convention on 5 September 1944.

The Queen’s unusual action was later ratified by the Dutch parliament in 1946. Churchill called her “the only man in the Dutch government

Advertisements

A sports challenge during WWII

20.-Elf-07481

The Dutch take their sports serious, despite what happens in the world. It is part of the Dutch psyche to not give up,keep going regardless(although looking at the performance of the Dutch National football team, you might be forgiven for thinking differently)

Despite being occupied by the Germans the Dutch felt compelled to organize the skating marathon called “De elfsteden tocht” (Eleven cities tour)

2017-05-11 (3)

 

A skating tour, almost 200 KM (120 mi) long, which is held both as a speed skating competition (with 300 contestants) and a leisure tour (up to 16,000 skaters). It is held in the province of Friesland in the north of the Netherlands, leading past all eleven historical cities of the province.

Elfstedentocht-Plaatsnamen

The tour is held  only when the natural ice along the entire course is at least 15 centimetres (6 in) thick.When the ice is suitable, the tour is announced and starts within 48 hours. In 1941 and 1942 it was felt the Marathon skating event had to be held because of the harsh winters which made the ice perfect.The Germans did allow it but did put severe restrictions in place.

In the early morning hours of 6 February 1941, 1900 people fastened on their skates. The race of all races was about to begin: the Elfstedentocht (Eleven Cities Speed Skating Tour). The weather was mild (0.0 °C/32 °F)and the ice looked inviting. But there were also some concerns. An imposed blackout meant a large part of the race would have to be skated in the dark, making it very difficult for many participants. The Frisian skater Auke Adema finished first.

Elfstedentocht1941Adema

On 22 January 1942, after a long spell of frost, the Elfstedentocht was held again. As many as 4,800 skaters signed up.

2017-05-11

The atmosphere was very special. Being together in Friesland, free from the Germans with their rules and bans, gave the participants a feeling of solidarity. The Germans could barely comprehend the nation’s fervour for this skating marathon. Given they had little control over the crowded event, they chose not to interfere. In 1942, Sietze de Groot of Weidum won the race. He skated the 200 kilometres in a record time of 8 hours and 44 minutes. The temperature was significantly lower in 1942 (-11.7 °C/10.94°F)

2017-05-11 (4)

Ironically during this grueling sporting event  the contestants felt humanity again, a sense of freedom despite occupation.

Like all the others since 1912 the names of Auke Adema and Sietze de Groot’s names were engraved on the coveted silver trophy cup that is passed from winner to winner, which is still the custom today.

20.-Wisselbeker-Elfstedentocht1

The last time this race was held was on 4 January 1997. Although in 2012 the conditions were ideal, at the last minute it was decided not to go ahead with the race.

An “alternative Elfstedentocht” has been held every year in January since 1989 on the Weissensee in Carinthia, Austria.

 

Battle for The Hague-The lost victory

German_PLane_Destroyed

The Battle for The Hague took place on 10 May 1940 as part of the Battle of the Netherlands between the Royal Netherlands Army and Luftwaffe Fallschirmjäger (paratroops). German paratroopers dropped in and around The Hague in order to capture Dutch airfields and the city.

Attack_on_The_Hague_(1940)_EN-en.svg

After taking the city, the plan was to force the Dutch queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands to surrender and to thus defeat the Kingdom of the Netherlands within a single day. The operation failed to capture the Queen, and the German forces failed to hold on to the airfields after Dutch counterattacks. The main body of surviving troops under Von Sponeck retreated toward the nearby dunes where they were continually pursued and harassed by Dutch troops until the Dutch supreme command, due to major setbacks on other fronts, surrendered five days later.

Hans_Graf_von_Sponeck

A German airfleet crossed The Netherlands under cover of darkness and, once over the North Sea, headed back towards the Dutch coast aiming for The Hague, the Dutch seat of government.

Surrounded by fighters and fighter-bombers, a large number of Junkers 52/3m transports carried the 5.000 men of the German 22nd Airborne Division.

images

The audacious objective of this unprecedented massive airborne operation was to seize the three airfields surrounding the city, arrest the Dutch government and capture the Dutch Royal family in their residency.

Attacks on Dutch airfields began at 04.15 and despite the alarm that had gone out around 03.00 (when the German airfleet had crossed the border) many Dutch fighters and bombers were damaged or destroyed on the ground..

The Germans planned to surprise the Dutch and so catch them off guard, allowing them to isolate the head of the Dutch Army. It was their intention to fly over the Netherlands, in order to lull the Dutch into thinking that England was their target. This was to be followed by approaching the country from the direction of the North Sea, attacking the airfields at Ypenburg, Ockenburg and Valkenburg to weaken potential Dutch defenses before taking The Hague. It was expected that the queen and the commander in chief of the Dutch forces, Henri Winkelman, might agree at this point to surrender.

Henri_Winkelman

However, if the Dutch did not surrender, the Germans planned to cut off all roads leading to The Hague in order to quell any subsequent Dutch counter-attack.

Although the German troops managed to capture the three airfields, they failed in their primary objective of taking the city of Hague and forcing the Dutch to surrender. Accordingly, the Dutch Army launched a counter-attack several hours later

The counter-attack was started from Ypenburg. Though outnumbered and relying on ammunition that they had captured from the Germans, the Dutch Grenadier Guards fought their way into position to launch artillery attacks against their own airfield, causing heavy damage to it. Following the attacks, the German troops were forced to evacuate the airfield’s burning buildings, losing their strong defensive position. The Dutch troops were able to advance into the airfield, and in the skirmishes that followed, many of the German soldiers were forced to surrender. Those who did not were eventually defeated.

Four Dutch Fokker T.Vs bombed the Ockenburg airfield,

Fokker_T.V

destroying idle Ju-52 transports.

ju52r13_2

The Dutch troops followed up by storming the airfield. The Germans were forced into retreat, and several were captured. However, some of the German troops withdrew to the woods near the field and successfully defended themselves against the counter-attack. The Dutch forces were later ordered to disengage and turn instead to Loosduinen, and so the Germans were able to head towards Rotterdam.

Having sealed off Leiden and the village of Wassenaar, the Dutch retook an important bridge near Valkenburg. When reinforcements arrived, the Dutch began attacking the Germans on the ground at the same time when Dutch bombers destroyed the grounded transport planes. While the Germans put up a defence at the outskirts of the airfield, they were forced to evacuate under heavy fire. Several skirmishes to liberate occupied positions in the village of Valkenburg nearby were fought between small groups of men on both sides, the Dutch with artillery support from nearby Oegstgeest, the village being heavily damaged in the process.

By the end of 10 May, Dutch forces had retaken the captured airfields, but this tactical victory was to be short lived as on 14th May the German Rotterdam Blitz forced the Dutch armed forces to surrender.

Rotterdam,_Laurenskerk,_na_bombardement_van_mei_1940

The last German atrocity in Amsterdam.

Amsterdam_shooting,_May_7_1945

On 7 May 1945, three days after German capitulation, thousands of Dutch people were waiting for Canadian troops to arrive on the Dam square in Amsterdam. In the Grote Club, on the corner of the Kalverstraat and the Paleisstraat, members of the Kriegsmarine watched as the crowd below their balcony grew and people danced and cheered.

Foto-Wiel-van-der-Randen-20

The Germans then placed a machine gun on the balcony and started shooting into the crowds. The motives behind the shooting have remained unclear; the Germans were drunk and possibly angered because contrary to previous agreement Dutch police had arrested members of the German military.

Amsterdam-Dam-Square-5th-May-1945-Shooting-Second-World-War-small

The shooting finally came to an end after a member of the resistance climbed into the tower of the royal palace and started shooting onto the balcony and into the club. At that moment, a German officer together with a Resistance commander found their way into the club and convinced the men to surrender. At the brink of peace, 120 people were badly injured and 22 pronounced dead.

c23eb60c-09ff-8217-6689-f62ebd242e22

In 2013, evidence was brought to light that suggested the number may have been higher: possibly 33 people died, and there were 10 more unconfirmed possible victims.

fJj1U5Z

On May 9th1945 the German soldiers were rounded up by the Canadians from the Grote Club and transported to Germany. The motive behind the shooting was never been investigated and the perpetrators were never been prosecuted.

 

The liberation of the Netherlands

40a4467c-74c8-4257-9bc6-1ee7de0c6394_thumbnail_600_600

On 4 May 1945 at Lüneburg Heath, east of Hamburg, Field Marshal Sir Bernard Law Montgomery accepted the unconditional surrender of the German forces in the Netherlands.

Teilkapitulation_–_040545

On 08:00 AM on the 5th of May 1945 the Netherlands is officially liberated, although the Southern provinces had already been liberated by September 1944.

Below are photographs of the liberation of the Netherlands.

Liberation of Geleen and Sittard in the south eastern province of Limburg on the 18th and 19th September 1944.

Liberation of Hoensbroek also in Limburg on the 17th of October 1944.The kids were orphans being cared for by the Nuns near castle Hoensbroek, The kids dressed up for the occasion.

Bevrijding 1944 1

The liberation of Ermelo

dceeb77a-9f0d-4b0d-bf0c-182bf42ca86a

An ecstatic crowd in Utrecht welcomes the Canadian liberators

An ecstatic crowd in Utrecht welcomes the Canadian liberators

Groningen

lt-dave-heap-kijkt-naar-het-bord-van-de-stad-groningen-aan-de-paterswoldseweg

Holten-Rijssen April_1945

Landscap

Some tender medical care

holland2

Ontarios parade in Holland to celebrate Dutch liberation, 1945

Ontarios parade in Holland to celebrate Dutch liberation, 1945

Citizens of Utrecht celebrate newfound freedom on May 5

UTRECHT_LIBERATION_E-1

World War II: Liberation of the Netherlands–South of the Rhine (September-December 1944)

ln-pol01s

Liberation Parade in Witteveen, Netherlands.

50_538

Some final personal words.

My young friend, you sacrificed your live selflessly for my freedom.

We never met but yet your act of valour has changed my life.

My young friend, I thank you for it is because of you I am here.

Often I ponder why you did what you did so that I can thrive.

 

From afar you came to deliver us from evil.

And evil you witnessed all around you.

Leaving a safe place just to be thrown into upheaval.

To see death, destruction and chaos too.

 

You don’t know it but my life you did change.

For if it wasn’t for you I may never have been conceived.

You gave up your life for a land that wasn’t yours but was strange.

Freedom was given by you and by me is thankfully received.

 

Alas there are those who do not realize the debt we owe to you.

They talk about leaving bygones be bygones and forget those who died.

My young friend not me, never will I forsake the memory of you.

The promise I make to you is that your bravery will be the source of my pride.

10906277_10206571304341451_5203999385345728679_n

Helga Deen- Another teenage girl,another diary.

De_in_1943_vermoorde_Helga_Deen

We all know the story of Anne Frank but unfortunately Anne wasn’t the only teenage who died in the camps. Helga Deen another teenage girl who lived in the Netherlands also died as result of the Nazi ideology and she also wrote a diary.

Helga Deen (6 April 1925 – 16 July 1943) was the author of a diary, discovered in 2004, which describes her stay in a Dutch prison camp, Kamp Vught, where she was brought during World War II at the age of 18.

800px-Kamp_Vught_1945.jpg

Deen was half-Dutch. Initially her father lived with his German GP wife in Germany, but moved back to the Netherlands as persecution increased. Her mother worked for a time as a doctor at a concentration camp at Vught. She was given leave to remain but chose to accompany her family to Sobibor, where she died.

After her last diary entry, in early July 1943, Helga Deen was deported to Sobibór extermination camp and murdered. She was 18 years old.

Helga Deen wrote her diary in a three-month period of time in 1943, the year she was eighteen, and also the year she died.

download

The diary shows how desperation slowly set in. In an excerpt dated June 6, 1943, just after 1,300 children were deported to Auschwitz and Sobibor death camps in Poland, she wrote: “Transport. It is too much. I am broken and tomorrow it will happen again. But I want to (persevere), I want to because if my happiness and willpower die, I too will die.”

526Kindertransport_Kamp_Vught__1463133562_25006-475x300

In the diary, Deen recorded some of her day-to-day experiences for Van den Berg, but even more of her emotions, Weling said. “Maybe this diary will be a disappointment to you because it doesn’t contain facts,” Deen wrote to Van den Berg. “But maybe you’ll be glad that you find me in it: conflict, doubt, desperation, shyness, emptiness.”

Among other entries, Deen’s diary recorded the relief she felt after her family was once not selected for deportation — and the fear they might be chosen next time. “We are homeless, countryless and we have to adjust ourselves to that way of life. What we have seen in these last months is indescribable, and for someone who hasn’t been there, unimaginable,” she wrote.

prisoners in transit at Vught

 

Helga hoped hard work might save her from deportation. But, in early July 1943, she was told her family would be on the next train.Below is the last entry of her diary, dated 6th of July 1943.

“Packing, and this morning a child dying which upset me completely,” she wrote.

“Another transport and this time we will be on it.”

A memorial stone to Helga and her family has been placed by a member of the Dutch Sobibor Foundation on the pathway which used to lead to the gas chambers (‘Road to Heaven’).

Memorial Helga Deen Tilburg

0272170323001203

 

The Dutch SS volunteers

53.-NIOD-214150

Not everyone in the Netherlands were against the Nazi occupation of the country. Although most of the Dutch hated the German occupiers, there were some who saw it as an opportunity to pursue their own agenda.

In a meeting on June 9, 1940 between A.A. Mussert( the leader of the National Socialist Movement in the Netherlands ,NSB). and Gottlob Berger of the German SS-Amt, Mussert was ordered by Hitler to recruit Dutch men for the Wiking division of the Waffen-SS. The Dutch volunteers would get their own regiment, the Standarte ‘Westland’.

The Dutch volunteers who fought with the Germans were initially two apart groups: those who served with the Waffen-SS and those who registered for the Dutch Vrijwilligerslegion (Volunteer Legion).

800px-Storm_het_blad_der_nederlandsche_SS_in_alle_kiosken_10_cent.

It became possible at the end of May 1940 for somebody Dutch to join the Waffen-SS. About 1,400 men, primarily those who had enlisted with the SS, followed a rigorous training in Munich. When the German army invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941, the Germans launched a propaganda campaign to recruit a large number of volunteers from different European countries to take part in the ‘crusade against Bolshevism’.

Nederlanders

 

 

The Volunteer Legion was established in the Netherlands for this purpose. More than 20,000 men signed up.

The purpose of the Dutch-Germanic SS was to enforce Nazi racial doctrine, especially anti-Semitic ideals.

They expected to serve in a more or less Dutch unit, under Dutch command and to fight in a Dutch uniform.

feldmeyer spreekt

 

But reality proved otherwise. The volunteers were assigned to a unit that was actually part of the German Waffen-SS. The group was a diverse lot: thirty percent, at the very most, were members of the NSB. Many religious individuals, in their strive to protect the ‘Christian Netherlands’ against ‘godless Bolshevism’, also joined the legion. In addition, a large group of adventurers found the idea of volunteering appealing. More than 7,000 Dutchmen met their deaths during the war wearing German uniforms.

nss

It was often claimed that the Dutch SS were just ordinary soldiers who did not take part in any atrocities but that is not true. They were just as vicious and sometimes even more brutal then their German counterparts.

From several diaries it became clear that the Dutch SS were actively involved in the killings of Jews.

An excerpt from the volunteer Wessels says

“”It was clear to everyone that we as SS men would act ruthlessly against the Jews, Eye for an Eye, Tooth for a Tooth”

Another volunteer ,Wiersma, wrote:

“The jews had to dig their own graves and subsequently they were executed”

 

Source: Dutch National Military Museum

Edith Stein- AKA Teresa Benedict of the Cross.

Edith-Stein

Today is the 30th anniversary of the beatification of Edith Stein by Pope John Paul II.Her story intrigued me, not because I am a Catholic and I pray to saints, but because Edith Stein’s life has remarkable similarities to another converted Jewish woman called Luise Löwenfels, who was deported from my birth place.

https://dirkdeklein.net/2016/03/24/forgotten-history-luise-lowenfels/

Both women had fled Germany and moved to the Netherlands,in fact they had met while in the Netherlands because the convents they belonged to were only a few miles from each other. And both fates were intertwined.

Edith Stein, also known as St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, (12 October 1891 – 9 August 1942), was a German Jewish philosopher who converted to Roman Catholicism and became a Discalced Carmelite nun. She is canonized as a martyr and saint of the Catholic Church.

800px-Edith_Stein_(ca._1938-1939)

In the midst of all her studies, Edith Stein was searching not only for the truth, but for Truth itself and she found both in the Catholic Church, after reading the autobiography of Saint Teresa of Avila. She was baptized on New Year’s Day, 1922.

After her conversion, Edith spent her days teaching, lecturing, writing and translating, and she soon became known as a celebrated philosopher and author, but her own great longing was for the solitude and contemplation of Carmel, in which she could offer herself to God for her people. It was not until the Nazi persecution of the Jews brought her public activities and her influence in the Catholic world to a sudden close that her Benedictine spiritual director gave his approval to her entering the Discalced Carmelie Nuns’ cloistered community at Cologne-Lindenthal on 14 October 1933. The following April, Edith received the Habit of Carmel and the religious name of “Teresia Benedicta ac Cruce,” and on Easter Sunday, 21 April 1935, she made her Profession of Vows.

When the Jewish persecution increased in violence and fanaticism, Sister Teresa Benedicta soon realized the danger that her presence was to the Cologne Carmel, and she asked and received permission to transfer to a foreign monastery. On the night of 31 December 1938, she secretly crossed the border into Holland where she was warmly received in the Carmel of Echt.

echt-karmel-2

There she wrote her last work, The Science of the Cross.

224

Stein’s move to Echt prompted her to be more devout and an even greater subscriber to the Carmelite rule. After having her teaching position revoked by the implementation of the Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service, Stein quickly eased back into the role of instructor at the convent in Echt, teaching both fellow sisters and students within the community Latin and philosophy.

Even prior to the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands, Stein believed she would not survive the war, going as far to write the Prioress to request her permission to “allow [Stein] to offer [her]self to the heart of Jesus as a sacrifice of atonement for true peace” and created a will. Her fellow sisters would later recount how Stein began “quietly training herself for life in a concentration camp, by enduring cold and hunger” after the Nazi invasion of the Netherlands in May, 1940.

Ultimately, she was not safe in the Netherlands. The Dutch Bishops’ Conference had a public statement read in all the churches of the nation on 20 July 1942 condemning Nazi racism. In a retaliatory response on 26 July 1942 the Reichskommissar of the Netherlands, Arthur Seyss-Inquart ordered the arrest of all Jewish converts who had previously been spared.

800px-Arthur-Seyss-Inquart-1940

Along with two hundred and forty-three baptized Jews living in the Netherlands, Stein was arrested by the SS on 2 August 1942. Stein and her sister, Rosa, were imprisoned at the concentration camps of Amersfoort and Westerbork before being deported to Auschwitz. A Dutch official at Westerbork was so impressed by her sense of faith and calm,he offered her an escape plan. Stein vehemently refused his assistance, stating, “If somebody intervened at this point and took away her chance to share in the fate of her brothers and sisters, that would be utter annihilation.”

On 7 August 1942, early in the morning, 987 Jews were deported to the Auschwitz concentration camp. It was probably on 9 August that Sr. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, her sister, and many more of her people were killed in a mass gas chamber.

 

The 2009 attack on the Dutch Royal family.

Death-Pictures-Attack-Dutch-Queen-01

The 2009 attack on the Dutch royal family occurred on 30 April at Apeldoorn, Netherlands, when a man drove his car at high speed into a parade which included Queen Beatrix, Prince (now King) Willem-Alexander and other members of the royal family. The occasion of the attack was the Dutch national holiday of Koninginnedag (or Queen’s Day).

article-1175433-04C09D3B000005DC-996_634x470

The vehicle drove through people lining the street watching the parade, resulting in eight deaths and ten injuries.It missed the royal family and crashed into a monument at the side of the road. No members of the royal family were harmed. It was the first attack on the Dutch royal family in modern times.

The driver, identified as 38-year-old Dutch national Karst Roeland Tates, was attended by emergency service workers of the fire brigade and police, taken into custody and transported to the hospital for treatment.

Karst_Tates

He died the day after the incident, the seventh person to succumb to injuries suffered during the attack. A 46-year-old woman died from her injuries days later, on 8 May, bringing the total number of deaths to eight.

At around 11:50 am, just before an open-top bus carrying the Dutch royal family made its last turn towards the palace of Het Loo in Apeldoorn.

77d3b0d54c79_sf_1

a black older-model Suzuki Swift crashed through the onlookers, just missing the bus carrying the royal family members, and slammed into De Naald, an obelisk-shaped Royal monument.

BN-OX793_0714at_GR_20160714223323

800px-De_Naald_Loolaan_Apeldoorn

Seconds after the attack Red Cross and Police first aiders were on site to provide the basic life saving treatments to the 17 victims, who were all taken to nearby hospitals. After the crash, the vehicle was examined by the anti-terrorist department and local police.

The attack and search were shown on live TV.Members of the Dutch royal family who were waving at the crowds gathered were shown standing up to look over at the crashed car, shocked and gasping with their hands over their mouths.

photo_verybig_103283

Karst Roeland Tates (6 March 1971– 1 May 2009), a 38-year-old Dutchman, was identified as the driver of the car. After the attack, he was rescued by the fire department and transferred to a hospital where he was treated for his injuries]Tates was from Huissen, a small town in the eastern Netherlands, and had no criminal record.

72655fe1e0c252541561ea386bdbd9bb

Tates died in the early morning of 1 May of brain injuries sustained in the crash.An autopsy was performed, no traces of alcohol were found in his blood

Tates’ motive remains unclear. He had called his mother to congratulate her on her birthday on the day before the attack and said he was looking forward to her birthday party on 3 May. He left no indication he was planning anything.Tates’ parents describe him as kind and attentive, and although there had been periods of financial trouble in his past, he had recently found work. According to his parents, Tates held no ill will towards the royal family and had described the Queen as a “stabilizing force”.

However, other reports revealed that Tates “had embarked on a mission of vengeance against society after losing his job as a night-shift security guard” earlier in the year, and had been facing eviction from his house. He told a neighbour he was depressed and had been out of contact with family for months.

The official investigation established that the attack was premeditated but not well prepared. The report said the people killed were probably innocent bystanders who were watching the parade.Tates did not intend to kill many people; he had scouted the situation beforehand but when he returned for his assault the situation had changed and people were standing in a previously cordoned-off street.

The public prosecutor assumed Tates acted alone and feared that his actions would never be totally explained.

Death-Pictures-Attack-Dutch-Queen-10

A few hours after the attack Queen Beatrix addressed the nation in an emotional video message.

What started out as a beautiful day has ended in a terrible tragedy that has shocked all of us. People who were standing nearby, who saw it happen on television, all those who witnessed it, must have been watching in astonishment and disbelief. We [the royal family] are speechless that something so terrible could have happened. My family, myself, and, I think, every person in the country feels for the victims, their families and friends, and all who have been affected by this incident.

— Queen Beatrix

hqdefault

At a press conference that afternoon police reported that Tates, who was still conscious but severely injured after the accident, had told police that it was a deliberate act aimed at the royal family.He had no prior history of psychological problems and there are no indications that any sort of terrorist group was involved. Initial rumours that the car was rigged with explosives were later denied by the police.

April/May strike- Death Penalty

dOOdstraF

On 29 April 1943, Wehrmachtbefehlshaber (Wehrmacht Commander) General Friedrich Christiansen announced that Dutch soldiers who had fought against the invading Germans in May 1940 would again be taken as prisoners of war and sent to Germany to work in factories and on the land.

ChristiansenPLM5

A wave of anger engulfed the country. A spontaneous protest strike broke out in the Stork Machinery Factory in Hengelo. This was followed by the so-called April-May Strikes that swept the rest of the country, except for some cities in the west of the Netherlands. SS and Police leader Hans Rauter tried to stop the action using violence: he instituted martial law.

Hanns Rauter

Twenty-year-old Jochum van Zwol from the village of Leens, who hadn’t even gone on strike himself, was the first to be summarily executed.

52.-Jogchum-van-Zwol

He was shot in front of a firing squad on 1 May 1943 in Groningen and buried somewhere in an unmarked grave. When his worried father cycled to the city of Groningen a day later to look for his missing son, he encountered a group of men standing around this placard: an official announcement that his son had been executed by the German occupier.

52.-Doodstraf-tijdens-April-Meistakingen

 

This massive act of resistance in the Netherlands ultimately resulted in 175 deaths.

 

Source: Stichting Oorlogs- en Verzetscentrum Groningen