Some of you might celebrate the 4th of may as an international star wars day. But for the Ducht it has a very different meaning. The 4th of may is the day that we remember all the lives that were lost because of and during the second world war and every other war.
On the morning of may 10th 1940 the dutch woke up to bombing and the Germans invaded. This is the day the war started for us. For the south the war was over in 1944 as we got liberated by the allies. In may 1945 the entire country was liberated. For Groningen, where I live, it was the Canadians that liberated us.
But at what a cost? The total loss of live for the entire war is estimated over 72 million people :0!!!! This includes the loss of the entire world. For the dutch that meant the loss of almost 200.000 people, including 102.000 jews. For Dutch-India (that was captured by Japan) that ment losing 4 million people.
The 4th of may is the day that the dutch remember the 4.2 million people that we lost. And of course the 25 million soldiers that lost their live fighting, the 42 million civilians, and the (nearly) 6 million Jews that were murdered.
It's a great loss that I hope we never have to suffer again. I know there are people dying because of war everyday but I hope it will never come to a world war again.
So today at 20:00 local time we have two minutes of silence remembering and honoring those who have lost their lives during and because of war.
On may the fifth we celebrate freedom. There are festivals all over the country.