Tonight we remember our fallen. At 8 pm local, two minutes of silence are observed nation wide (or, that is the idea, anyway) and numerous ceremonies at WW2 monuments around the Netherlands will be held in the memory of those that gave their lives in the battle against a totalitarian regime that specifically targeted Jews, christians communists, homosexuals and anyone else that did not wish to submit to the hate-filled ideology of this regime (and for once I am not talking about islam). ANd tomorrow is Liberation Day in the Netherlands.
Both days historically are dedicated to deliverance from the Nazi regime reigning during WW2. However, over the last years an unfortunate tendency has developed, in which we are told that we need to ‘generalize’ the meaning of both days to stay ‘inclusive and modern’. Hence, Remembrance Day is presented by the organizing committee (Het Committee 4 en 5 mei) as a day to commemorate all victims of all wars. Presumably, this includes the facsimiles of human life populating the Taliban in Afghanistan or the Sadrists and Al-Qaeda jihadis in Iraq that perished at the hands of Allied forces.
As Stan de Jong (NL) observes: Commemorating everything is tantamount to commemorating nothing, making Remembrance Day an empty and dreary formality. No, if Remembrance Day is to be of continuing value, we should use it to keep alive the memory of all those that resisted tyranny and fought for our freedom. People who acted from a deep seated conviction that man is supposed to be free and any legitimate government answers to its subjects. People like Johannes Post (p), Hannie Schaft, Frits de Zwerver (rev. Frits Slomp) and all members of the Dutch Resistance during the Nazi occupation. Members of a tiny (too tiny) minority that stood up to dehumazing totalitarianism and braved the consequences. People to look to as an example of the alternative, of taking charge of your life and in what manner, free or unfree, you want to lead it. These, and all those who are like them, are the people the memory of who we need to keep alive. For ourselves our children and our childrens’ children. There is no worthier reason to keep the 4th of May.
[UPDATE001] How not to celebrate Liberation Day: In Rotterdam the Liberation Day festivities were hideously marred by rioting youth, who apparently had planned their disgusting misbehaviour in advance. Adriana has the whole story over at Digital Journal.
Dutch police are not fond of pulling their guns – but on Wednesday, they were forced to fire warning shots to keep the crowd away from them. Some news reports claim that the riots were caused by a ‘hard core of Feyenoord footbal club supporters’ — the police were encircled by the aggressive crowd and forced to fire a series of warning shots. No-one was injured. The festivities in Rotterdam’s city centre ended abruptly afer this event. Since there’s still an investigation going on, nobody knows who the rioters were.
First Queensday, now Liberation Day. Is this what the Dutch have come to? Thoughts of emigration surface yet again.