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April 9, 1944. Planes were coming over day and night. All those pilots risked their lives too.
Those Germans must have been shaking in their boots when they heard our planes. They shot at the planes even when the skies were overcast and they couldn’t see anything. But we welcomed the sound because we knew our Forces were still working on our liberation. Everybody was waiting and waiting for the Allied invasion. We still got the newspaper, and every day people were guessing when D-Day would be coming.
April 10, 1944. I had plans to buy a sewing machine, a girl's mantel dress and a three-wheeled transport bike on the following day. People were selling everything they owned to buy food.
April 22, 1944. Spring had arrived. There was new life for flowers and greenery, but the sky was still filled with plane-loads of destruction on their way to their targets. The ack-ack would come. (Nicknames for anti-aircraft guns include AA, AAA or triple-A, an abbreviation of anti-aircraft artillery, "ack-ack" from the World War I phonetic alphabet for AA). The Germans were feverishly enforcing their defence line with big concrete bunkers. They did the work themselves because they didn't trust the civilian workers. Their canons were facing west. I guessed they must be expecting trouble to come from that direction.
Tuesday, June 6, 1944. Hooray, D-Day was finally here today! The paper read: “A massive force of 13,000 planes and 4,000 ships. Many paratroopers were dropped behind enemy lines in France. The English radio announced that they had launched an 80 km air-train towed by two airplanes containing 2000 troops."
The Germans ordered the last of the farmers co-op trucks to take to the city including the driver, because he knew how to operate the coal/gas-powered truck. When Rick (well known to everybody) found out that he had to stay with the truck, he escaped. When the Germans found out, they went to his house and arrested his wife. Rick was nowhere to be found, so after three days, they let his wife go home.
August 20, 1944. Today was a very exciting day. It was a nice day, so they bombed 19 airfields - 5 in Holland, 4 in Belgium and 10 in Germany. According to BBC, 2000 airplanes were involved. 18 planes were lost on this day.
We had a front seat when they started their run on the Soesterberg airfield.
Five or six of us ran for the hay loft and had a clear view. It was like a flying carpet. We tried but it was impossible to count how many planes there were. May be there were 150 of them all flew in a pattern - all huge 4-engine bombers. The Germans blasted them from everywhere. The sky was full of black puffs of smoke where the ack-ack and machine guns were spitting fire into the sky, but never hitting anything.
Finally one plane got hit. The first one ever for us to see up close. All of a sudden, this plane made a sharp turn to the left and broke the pattern. At the same time, a blast of smoke shot out from the tail, then a sharp turn to the right, then a stream of fire. What exactly happened, we didn’t know. It seemed that the plane just exploded. The motors went straight down with a tail of fire. The rest of the plane twirled down like a leaf in the fall. Then we saw a parachute unfold. The ground was all afire, and we saw another parachute floating down. Where was the rest of the crew?
In the mean time, the bombing continued. The sound of the bombs was like a real heavy thunder. There was fire everywhere. After a couple of circles, the planes headed toward Airport Deelen in Arnhem to lay more eggs there. After about ten or fifteen minutes, they flew back, now going west towards England and home. This all happened at 11:30 Sunday morning and in beautiful weather.
September 3, 1944. The planes came back again and dropped all kinds of bombs, including phosphoric bombs, which burned through everything. They must be small bombs as we didn’t hear any loud explosions, but we saw something we had never seen in our lives before. We saw patches of rainbow colors, which sort of waved like a flag in a light wind. Five of us were watching and we all saw the same thing. We were not dreaming. It was truly there! After some time, they just faded away. We couldn't all be crazy. What was that? Was it a miracle????
September 7, 1944. The Allies crossed the border into Brabant. The Dutch Nazis and traitors flew in panic to Germany in anything that would move: cars, trucks, trailers, busses, motorcycles, bikes. But the Allied hunters were awake. Planes, flying in pairs, were always patrolling the sky. We saw them dive down with guns ablazing. If the first gun missed, the second one would get its target. Herman the Baker saw a busload with despised women who were burned to death in a ditch next to the cement road - an open road with no cover from trees. They were so scared that they couldn't wait for nightfall to come. But there was still the curfew. Help! Help!
The German army too was on the run. I saw trucks with brooms tied to the front bumpers to sweep the roofing nails off the road, which the good people put there to give them a farewell present. Radio London reported that Breda was free. However, they later apologized because it was not true.
The SS - Schutzstaffel at the German border stopped the traitors and sent them back.
The SS also sent the army back to fight another day. Ha, Ha.
Now that they lost everything, even their own unit, they became more vicious and grabbed everything. One would point his rifle at your heart, the other would rob you and take what you had.
Phosphoric Bombs. White phosphorus (WP) is a material made from a common allotrope of the chemical element phosphorus that is used in smoke, tracer, illumination and incendiary munitions.
"As an incendiary weapon, WP burns fiercely and can set cloth, fuel, ammunition and other combustibles on fire. Since WWII, it has been extensively used as a weapon, capable of causing serious burns or death. White phosphorus is used in bombs, artillery, and mortars, short-range missiles which burst into burning flakes of phosphorus upon impact. White phosphorus is commonly referred to in military jargon as "WP", and the slang term "Willy/Willie Pete/Peter" (dating from World War I) is still commonly used by infantry and artillery servicemen." ~ Info from Wikipedia.
"Despised women": From Carl: "Despised women" were not the Jewish women. Jewish people were only taken out of the country in railroad barbed wire cattle cars. I saw many of them." - Here, the "Despised women" referred to wives or girlfriends of NSBers or girlfriends of German soldiers. NSB stood for the Dutch Nationaal-Socialistische Beweging which was the same as Hitler's Party. "Beweging" means "Movement" in English.
The National Socialist Movement in the Netherlands (Dutch: Nationaal-Socialistische Beweging in Nederland, NSB) was a Dutch fascist and later national socialist political party . . . 1931-1940 - The NSB was founded in Utrecht in 1931 . . . The founders were Anton Mussert, who became the party's leader, and Cornelis van Geelkerken. The party based its program on Italian fascism and German National Socialism, however unlike the latter before 1936 the party was not anti-semitic and even had Jewish members . . . 1940-1945 - After the Second World War broke out, the NSB sympathized with the Germans . . . In May 1940, 800 NSB members and sympathizers were put in custody by the Dutch government, after the German invasion. Soon after the Dutch defeat on 14 May 1940, they were set free by German troops. In June 1940, Mussert held a speech in Lunteren in which he called for the Netherlands to embrace the Germans . . . In 1940 the German occupation government had outlawed all socialist and communist parties; in 1941 it forbade all parties, except for the NSB. The NSB openly collaborated with the occupation forces. Its membership grew to about 100,000 . . . On September 4, 1944 the Allied forces conquered Antwerp . . . On September 5, most of the NSB's leadership fled to Germany and the party's organization fell apart, on what is known as Dolle Dinsdag (Mad Tuesday) . . . After the German signing of surrender on May 6, 1945, the NSB was outlawed. Mussert was arrested the following day. Many of the members of the NSB were arrested, but only a few were convicted. Mussert was executed on May 7, 1946. ~ Info from Wikipedia.
Dolle Dinsdag (Mad Tuesday) is a Dutch name for Tuesday, 5 September 1944. On this day, many rumours were spreading in the occupied Netherlands that the liberation by Allied forces was at hand. On 4 September 1944, the Allies had conquered Antwerp, and any day now (so the rumours said) they would advance on the Netherlands . . . Many Dutchmen prepared to receive and cheer on the Allied liberators. Dutch and Orange flags and pennants were prepared, and many workers left their workplace to wait for the Allies to arrive. German occupation forces and NSB members panicked: documents were destroyed and many fled the Netherlands for Germany . . . The Allied advance could not continue as the Allies had overextended themselves . . . The north part of the Netherlands had to wait until 5 May 1945 for their liberation.~ Info from Wikipedia.
1944: Desperate Acts from the Holocaust Chronicle.
1900-1945: Mass Media and Censorship I. De Gil, Den Haag/Amsterdam 1 mei 1944. Speciale extra-editie! (De Gil, The Hague/Amsterdam 1 May 1944. Special extra issue!) "One important staff member of this journal was Willem W. Waterman (pseudonym of Willem van den Hout (1915-1985). He was the first to coin the alliterative expression (in De Gil) of "Dolle Dinsdag" [Crazy Tuesday: Tuesday 5 September 1944, when the Dutch population mistakenly thought that liberation by the Allies was imminent]."
SS, abbreviation of Schutzstaffel - (German meaning: “Protective Echelon”) the black-uniformed elite corps of the Nazi Party. Founded by Adolf Hitler in April 1925 as a small personal bodyguard, the SS grew with the success of the Nazi movement and, gathering immense police and military powers, became virtually a state within a state.~ Info from Wikipedia.
● World War 2 Battles and Military Operations: The Liberation of the Netherlands, 1944-1945 from Democracy at War, Canadian Newspapers and the Second World War.
Canadians Thrust Deeper Into Holland, from The Globe and Mail, Oct. 3, 1944.
R.H.L.I Has Lead Role in Capture of Dutch Island from The Hamilton Spectator, Nov. 6, 1944
● Liberation of Holland from Canadian Encyclopedia.
● History of the Netherlands (1939-1945) from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
● Military history of the Netherlands during World War II from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
● Chronological overview of the liberation of Dutch cities and towns during World War II from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Example: 14 September 1944: Maastricht, Gulpen, Meerssen.
● Canadians liberate Holland. YouTube video, 1:30 min. (Include images of "Despised Women")
● LIberation of the Netherlands. YouTube video, 3:28 min. (67 videos available in this series)
● CANADA AND THE LIBERATION OF THE NETHERLANDS. YouTube video, 8:07 min. (Includes some images of planes and paratroopers)
● Occupation and Liberation of Eindhoven 1944. YouTube video, 6:11 min.
● Nazi occupation of Holland - Remembered, Part one. YouTube video, 1:30 min.
● Nazi occupation of Holland - Remembered, Part two. YouTube video, 1:58 min.
● Nazi occupation of Holland - Remembered, Part three. YouTube video, 1:34 min.
● The World At War; Occupation: Holland Part 1 HD. YouTube video, 13:44 min.
● The World At War; Occupation: Holland Part 2 HD. YouTube video, 13:44 min.
● The World At War; Occupation: Holland Part 4 HD. YouTube video, 13:44 min.
● Battle Rages Along Nazi Wall 1944 Newsreel. YouTube video, 5:51 min.
● ALLIES BREAK NAZI GRIP ON HOLLAND, 1944. YouTube video, 2:00 min.
●The Liberation of the Netherlands. YouTube video, 9:57 min.
● Liberation of Maastricht (Netherlands) September 14, 1944. YouTube video, 3:24 min. In Dutch.
● Normandy 1944 - 2010 - Before and After Photos. PowerPoint presentation of actual photos taken in 1944 compared with photos taken of the same location 66 years later, in 2010. Compiler unknown. Or view: Normandie 1944-2010 on YouTube, 3:07 min. with music.