The American flag flown on the boat that led the first US troops to Utah Beach during the Normandy landings in World War II will go on show at the Kunsthal in Rotterdam for two weeks from Monday.
‘The story behind this battered and stained flag is one of many within the greater story of World War II,’ the Kunsthal says. ‘It is a story about freedom, which is told through a unique and tangible object.’
The flag is said to be the most important artifact from the invasion still in private hands. It was bought by a Dutch art collector at auction in Texas for $514,000 in 2016.
D Day took place 75 years ago in June, and collector Bert Kreuk said last year he now wants to donate the flag to the US. ‘We think it belongs in the US. It is a symbol of liberation and one of the most important flags in American history,’ broadcaster NOS quotes him as saying last year.
Kreuk hopes US president Donald Trump will pick up the flag personally when he comes to France to commemorate the 75th anniversary.
The flag will be unveiled at the Kunsthal in front of the US ambassador Pete Hoekstra and Dutch defence minister Ank Bijleveld. The flag has never been shown before in Rotterdam, ‘a city where the war has left indelible traces,’ the Kunsthal said.
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