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Nazi Recruitment of the Dutch

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Poster: German propaganda poster in the Netherlands

Netherlands: Queen Wilhelmina & the exiled government in London

The Netherlands was neutral at the beginning of WWII, however, Nazi Germany invaded the country on May 10, 1940. Queen Wilhelmina tried to flee south with the royal family but came under heavy fire by the Luftwaffe. Finding it too dangerous to stay in the Netherlands, she took refuge in the United Kingdom. On May 15, the Dutch forces surrendered.

The Germans hoped the Dutch would collaborate as had Vichy France, however, the Queen set up the Dutch government in exile and communicated with her people in late-night broadcasts from Britain. Only a minority of the Dutch supported the Nazis.


The 34th SS Volunteer Grenadier Division Landstorm Nederland was a Waffen SS division made up of Dutch volunteers which saw action on the Western Front.

Other regiments of Dutch served in German service as home defense units, and some as auxiliary police involved in the rounding up of Jews, Communists and other undesirables. Some were recruited from the Dutch Nazi Party and others joined to escape forced labor.

Poster in Dutch language - "DUTCHMEN - For your honor and conscience [rise] Up! - Against Bolshevism / The Waffen SS Calls You!"

*Disclaimer: World War II posters, insignias and documents of Nazi Germany, Russia, Italy, and Japan, are displayed on this website as historical documents of the time period. They are not intended to promote or condone any political, racial, military, religious, or social views and/or actions. This website does not condone genecide.