Yesterday and today are two very important days in the Netherlands.

On May 5 we celebrate that we live in freedom in the Netherlands. We celebrate that in 1945 we were liberated from the German occupation in Europe and the Japanese occupation in Asia, and since then we have been free from war.

May 5 is also a day to reflect on the importance of freedom and to realise that freedom is vulnerable. World War II did not end world war. On a daily basis people are still fighting with each other, fighting for freedom. May 5 is the day of thinking about freedom in the world.

On May 4 at 08:00 PM we have 2 minutes of silence for all the victims that fell during the war and their families. This year of course a very special year: it was 75 years ago and we still live in a quarantine.

Amsterdam is a special place to remember the fallen and every year all the officials are coming to the capital to lay flowers at the national memorial: de DAM in the centre.

The Prime Minister will lay a wreath, besides the king and queen, the Amsterdam major, besides a lot of official World War II bodies and survivors/ survivors' family members.

The following picture shows you how it normally looks when this “wreath laying” takes place; more than 20,000 people together:


The royal family laying a wreath


All Flags hang at half mast


This is the way it looked last night:


In addition to the King and Queen, Prime Minister Mark Rutte, the Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema and Gerdi Verbeet, the chairman of the National Committee on 4 and 5 May, were also present.




It never happened before that a Royalty spoke at this ceremony. King Willem Alexander was the first one and spoke about the following:

In deze uitzonderlijke maanden hebben we allemaal een deel van onze vrijheid moeten opgeven”, zei koning Willem-Alexander maandag bij de Nationale Dodenherdenking op de Dam in Amsterdam, die vanwege de Corona Crisis voor het eerst in de geschiedenis zonder publiek plaatsvond. „Sinds de oorlog hebben we deze situatie niet gekend.


In these exceptional months we all had to give up part of our freedom,” said King Willem-Alexander on Monday at the National Remembrance Day on Dam Square in Amsterdam, which took place without an audience for the first time in history due to the corona crisis. “We have not known this situation since the war.

The 2 minutes of silence are very important and is a moment still done 75 years after the War. Life in the Netherlands stops for 2 minutes, even delivery halts:

Picture was shot by somebody, showing a delivery boy, waiting for 2 minutes before delivering the dinner somewhere.

5th of May, today, traditionally is day of celebration. Many Festivals all through the Netherlands and many street fairs. Well, .... none like that this year:


Bevrijdingspop (Liberation Festival) in Haarlem, the Netherlands


Due to Covid-19 we have had many first offs and well, this 2020

Liberation Day is not different. We are free though. Forgive but never forget.

Very surreal; normally you see all these people on the screen, or in real life if you attend a ceremony and now, empty ... Which in a way is good, what makes it even stranger. Freedom ... we still have our freedom, although it is most of the day covered by the same 4 walls... 1 difference with the freedom talked about in this document, this is by free will ! ! !

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