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Neutral Holland

Posted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 2:51 am
by edwin
Dear all,

I have updated my photo blog with a section concering traces of WW1 in Neutral Holland. Despite being neutral during WW1, there are still a lot of silent witnesses of WW1 present in the Netherlands.

https://www.edwinvanbloois.com/photoblo ... l-holland/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Best regards,

Edwin

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:10 am
by Khukri
:thumb up: :thumb up:
Dank je wel! Thank you!

Francis

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 10:15 am
by joerookery
Both Edwin and Lars have been very helpful to me in researching some stuff in Holland around the Maastricht appendix. They have both provided all sorts of photographs, maps and information that have been just wonderful. To the point that next summer we plan on going there and taking a look at the terrain/river crossings. I have another book coming based on Limburg 1914 and I think it is quite special. My co-author – Dr. Dennis Showalter – has some real insights on the subject. Holland is really pretty interesting in 1914 and I do not believe it has been researched that much in the English language. I

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Sat Sep 16, 2017 2:57 am
by edwin
joerookery wrote:Both Edwin and Lars have been very helpful to me in researching some stuff in Holland around the Maastricht appendix. They have both provided all sorts of photographs, maps and information that have been just wonderful. To the point that next summer we plan on going there and taking a look at the terrain/river crossings. I have another book coming based on Limburg 1914 and I think it is quite special. My co-author – Dr. Dennis Showalter – has some real insights on the subject. Holland is really pretty interesting in 1914 and I do not believe it has been researched that much in the English language. I
Thanks! I agree, that the role of the Netherlands during WW1 deserves more attention. Even within Dutch history this is much ignored because it is overshadowed by WW2. Although neutral, there is considerable evidence that the Netherlands were pro-German but this is perhaps not surprising when living next to a mighty neighbor.

Regards,

Edwin

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Sat Nov 11, 2017 7:34 pm
by edwin
I have added a few pics to this section of my photo blog.

https://www.edwinvanbloois.com/photoblo ... l-holland/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Regards,

Edwin

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:23 am
by joerookery
I read in a popular source the other day that the German atrocities committed in Belgium were almost entirely in French-speaking areas. This does not square with any of my research. We will be in Belgium/Holland this summer. At least I will be able to see the terrain firsthand. Too late for this book but might well do justice for the next!

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 1:21 am
by Gustaf
joerookery wrote:I read in a popular source the other day that the German atrocities committed in Belgium were almost entirely in French-speaking areas. This does not square with any of my research. We will be in Belgium/Holland this summer. At least I will be able to see the terrain firsthand. Too late for this book but might well do justice for the next!
It would seem that the writer has not heard of Louven.

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 5:42 am
by edwin
joerookery wrote:I read in a popular source the other day that the German atrocities committed in Belgium were almost entirely in French-speaking areas. This does not square with any of my research. We will be in Belgium/Holland this summer. At least I will be able to see the terrain firsthand. Too late for this book but might well do justice for the next!
That's definately not true. The initial atrocities were commited in Wallonia but as the German armies advanced, the attrocities also spread to Flanders. See also https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rape_of_Belgium" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Regards,

Edwin

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 7:11 am
by pkdeboer1973
I think a lot of these accusations were admitted by the British after the war to be propaganda against Germany.
Also during the war the rumor was spread that Germans with saw back bayonets would be killed on the spot when captured, just to undermine the German morale.

Truth is the first thing to die in a war.

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:28 am
by stuka f
We had a similar problem with the British propaganda machine during our Leopold's II Congo episode...

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 11:32 am
by joerookery
Francs-tireurs

One semi-doctrinal issue that the Germans faced was what to do with irregulars and civilians known as francs-tireurs. Who exactly were francs-tireurs? One army corps deputy commander tried to define them as any citizen of a combatant nation not in a uniform, who in any way disrupted German operations communications or supply. They had been a major concern to the Germans in the Franco-Prussian War. The French considered them partisans and the Germans regarded them as terrorists. If caught by German troops, the franc-tireurs could be shot out of hand if in the act or provided a one-officer court-martial that had the power of handing out death sentences. Residents of Alsace-Lorraine found with weapons could be shot and those suspected of being a franc-tireurs would be handed over to a formal court-martial.

This “francs-tireurs doctrine” really dealt with the application of the rules of war and has been the food for atrocity discussions for decades. There certainly were atrocities and standing orders to shoot civilians who were resisting. In the wake of the Franco-Prussian War, there were many stories of francs-tireurs. For four decades, stories abounded and were embellished about how francs-tireurs had ambushed, mutilated, and poisoned German forces during that war. The advancing armies in 1914 expected to encounter francs-tireurs whether they were there or not. As early as 4 August, shots fired from the small Belgian town of Battice at a cavalry patrol scouting the way into Liège were interpreted as franc-tireurs. This event led to the execution of three civilians and the burning of the town.

A view of the inevitability of civilian involvement in combat and an "appropriate" military response permeated the German military. There was an anti-French feeling against the "people's war" or “levée en masse,” which was seen as legal, but reprehensible. Julius v. Hartmann, a noted theorist, said, “where the people's war breaks out, terrorism becomes a principle of military necessity.” Senior commanders in their 60s and 70s during the invasion of 1914 had been young officers during the Franco-Prussian War and had distinct views based on their experiences with francs-tireurs. In the Hague conventions of 1899 and 1907, there was an international endeavor to more tightly define the laws of war. The intent was to make things more civilized and less barbarous. As a result of the first convention, the German General Staff developed a "war book" to offer some guidance. It required that prisoners of war be conditionally identified, if there was some proof that they were operating as enemy soldiers. The negotiations involved a seesaw battle between smaller countries that wanted the ability to have a mass “people’s war” and imperial Germany that did not. In 1908, the German Army issued the Felddienstordnung, which provided guidance that preventive security measures were justified when there were possible attacks by enemy civilians. This guidance included threatening the inhabitants with penalties, taking hostages, and burning streets. This rule was in direct conflict to the previous endorsement of the Hague Convention, which was actually published as an appendix to the Felddienstordnung in 1911.

Despite this conflict, there was no change to the language of the Felddienstordnung. Imperial German officers were trained to expect civilian resistance and to treat it as a criminal act. Specifically, the Kriegs-Akademie taught that Article 2 of the convention did not comply with the German viewpoint. The noted theorist and writer v. d. Goltz dismissed the 1907 Hague Convention as hypocrisy because none of the signatories had any intention of sticking to it.

In the long run, the franc-tireurs situation did not turn out well for imperial Germany. Not only did Germany sustain a propaganda defeat, but also a tremendous amount of energy was used chasing reported sightings in 1914. Some of them may have been true, others of them false. There certainly were atrocities that in the German literature may have been justified, but they did not stand up in the court of international opinion. The actions could not be justified with the extant Hague Convention. It seems as though inexperienced soldiers, in total fear—sometimes fueled with alcohol—and a lifetime of stories, overreacted in many cases shooting at the "bogeyman" and taking revenge on entire cities for the actions of a real or imagined few.

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 11:35 am
by joerookery
It would seem that the writer has not heard of Louven.
The author was Zuber whose bias mars most of his works.

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:35 am
by Khukri
Leuven in is the only way! In Flemish!!!

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 10:41 am
by stuka f
Well said , Francis!! :D :wink:
Image

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 7:59 am
by edwin
Dear all,

I have been visiting WW2 sites in the northern part of the Netherlands for several years. Finally, I decided to use these pics and I therefore extended my photoblog a bit with these pics. I know its not WW1 but hopefully you can apreciate it.

https://www.edwinvanbloois.com/photoblo ... therlands/

Best regards,

Edwin

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 2:50 pm
by Sandmann
In the long run, the franc-tireurs situation did not turn out well for imperial Germany. Not only did Germany sustain a propaganda defeat, but also a tremendous amount of energy was used chasing reported sightings in 1914. Some of them may have been true, others of them false. There certainly were atrocities that in the German literature may have been justified, but they did not stand up in the court of international opinion. The actions could not be justified with the extant Hague Convention. It seems as though inexperienced soldiers, in total fear—sometimes fueled with alcohol—and a lifetime of stories, overreacted in many cases shooting at the "bogeyman" and taking revenge on entire cities for the actions of a real or imagined few.
There was a historian-conference about that topic at the End of last year. In sum, the conference demonstrated the need for additional research, particularly on the Belgian role in 1914 and the key question how widespread the irregular resistance had been. The evidence provided by U. Keller in his book „Schuldfragen. Belgischer Untergrundkrieg und deutsche Vergeltung im August 1914“ hints at a more than merely sporadic resistance by irregular Belgian fighters. Furthermore, the workshop showed the fruitfulness of open debate and the continuous media attention devoted to this subject.
https://www.hsozkult.de/conferencerepor ... ichte-7409

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:28 pm
by joerookery
Thank you for including the synopsis of the conference! That was a nice read. I had always thought that the book by Horne and Kramer was sort of the end of the saga. Boy was I wrong! What is nice about this is that you have different sides having different opinions without going ad hominem. Very unfortunately, my experience is that this is an exposed nerve. In some corners you cannot even broach the subject. One of the things I find most interesting is that atrocity count got worse over time. So there was certainly a week in August where things were really bad and it was not the frontline troops. The Garde Civique was not well thought out. Looking at pictures it does not surprise me at all that there were problems.

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 5:58 pm
by Sandmann
I think this discussions will never find an end. It is not possible to reconstruct the german invasion and the belgian answer to it about 100 years later without interpretations which are allways a personal point of view.
I just hope that a re-analysing of this subject will not hurt the luckily well-advanced reconciliation of the european peoples. It could endanger the unity of Europe and strengthen the nationalistic thoughts, which are rising everywhere in Europe and which makes me very sad :(

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 12:11 am
by MG1918
Pro-German Holland during WWI. Can anyone pinpoint for me please any accurate references to the Dutch cement making machine for Germany. I am just looking into some details on the manufacture of defence systems, in particular pill box MG emplacements?
VMT
Mark

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 4:30 pm
by edwin
Great article explaining why the Netherlands were pro-German during WW1.

https://encyclopedia.1914-1918-online.n ... etherlands

Regards,

Edwin

Re: Neutral Holland

Posted: Tue Feb 19, 2019 12:29 pm
by aicusv
Very interesting.