Thursday 18 August 2022

Rotterdam remembers the bombardment of May 14, 1940

Central Rotterdam and the railway station.jpgRotterdam on Thursday remembers the World War II bombardment by German planes 75 years ago in which 900 people died and vast swathes of the city were destroyed.

Almost 80,000 people lost their homes in the bombing and 20,000 homes were destroyed when parts of the city became ‘a sea of fire’.

The ceremonies include wreath-laying at various monuments and the ringing of church bells in the area which was destroyed for 10 minutes from 13.29 hours.

The aim of the bombardment was to break Dutch resistance and force the Dutch to surrender. The Germans then threatened to destroy Utrecht if the government did not surrender, which it did the following day.

Historians are still questioning whether the bombing could have been avoided, broadcaster Nos reports.

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