Holland saps Nazis' power, Dutch report (10-24-41)

The Pittsburgh Press (October 24, 1941)

Holland saps Nazis’ power, Dutch report

RAF fliers aided in escapes; life resembles U.S. gangster films

London, Oct. 24 (UP) –
The Free Dutch newspaper Vrij Nederland today quoted a Dutch engineer escaped from Holland and just arrived in London as saying that Holland was a nest of intrigue against the Germans and was:

…witnessing the slow collapse of Nazi power.

One of the principal activities of British sympathizers in Holland, he said, was helping members of the Royal Air Force who escape from the Germans to get back home.

The newspaper said the engineer was a “special courier” who had brought a bundle of dispatches.

Nazis hunt Dutch radio

One dispatch said the Gestapo was hunting a Dutch radio station, popularly known as the “German-icide Sprayer,” which specialized in “correcting” German propaganda.

Another dispatch told of the difficulties of repatriating RAF pilots who had been forced down in Holland and were sheltered by the Dutch.

It said:

One of the main difficulties is feeding. Supplies are short, but our visitors get meals. Everyone plays his part. It’s fantastic, particularly when you know how many people are working for us. For every 10 arrested as hostages, 20 new recruits fill the gap.

Like U.S. gangster films

The newspaper said many arms were hidden, and:

…this is good because the Dutch Nazis are now armed. The situation now is just like the gangster world depicted in American films. Rackets like blackmail and “protection” are rampant. The worst offenders are the German and Dutch Nazis.

It said Holland was optimistic, perhaps too much so,

…but we cannot help seeing the diminishing strength of the occupier and holdups and restrictions in his production because of the scarcity of raw material. The slackening off of shipbuilding is there for everyone to see, because the ways either are empty or occupied by vessels upon which work has been suspended.

Get drunk over raids

The German order to surrender all domestic metal was the signal for mass “funerals” in backyards all over Holland, it was said.

The newspaper said:

The people who are working for other German-occupied countries tell the same stories. Their position is worse in Brittany and Belgium is worse. In Lorient, the German officers dread RAF raids so much they are always drunk. Such mentality will never win the war and they know it. Holland is witnessing the slow collapse of Nazi power and the increased strength of the Allies.

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