The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression
Volume I Chapter IX
Aggression Against Belgium, The Netherlands, and Luxembourg
(Part 4 of 6)

[Page 769]

of doubt: the hour had struck. Aircraft were first reported in the east. At five o'clock came news of the bombing of two Netherlands aerodromes, the violation of the Belgian frontier, the landing of German soldiers at the Eben-Emael Fort, the bombing of the Jemelle station."

"At 8:30 the German Ambassador came to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. When he entered the Minister's room, he began to take a paper from his pocket. M. Spaak" [Belgian Foreign Minister] "stopped him 'I beg your pardon, Mr. Ambassador. I will speak first.' And in an indignant voice, he read the Belgian Government's protest: 'Mr. Ambassador, the German Army has just attacked our country. This is the second time in twenty- five years that Germany has committed a criminal aggression against a neutral and loyal Belgium. What has just happened is perhaps even more odious than the aggression of 1914. No ultimatum, no note, no protest of any kind has ever been placed before the Belgian Government. It is through the attack itself that Belgium has learned that Germany has violated the undertakings given by her on 13 October 1937, and renewed spontaneously at the beginning of the war. The act of aggression committed by Germany, for which there is no justification whatever, will deeply shock the conscience of the world. The German Reich will be held responsible by history. Belgium is resolved to defend herself. Her cause, which is the cause of Right, cannot be vanquished'."


"The Ambassador was then able to read the note he had brought: 'I am instructed by the Government of the Reich,' he said, 'to make the following declaration: In order to forestall the invasion of Belgium, Holland, and Luxembourg, for which Great Britain and France have been making preparations clearly aimed at Germany, the Government of the Reich is compelled to ensure the neutrality of the three countries mentioned by means of arms. For this purpose, the Government of the Reich will bring up an armed force of the greatest size, so that resistance of any kind will be useless. The Government of the Reich guarantees Belgium's European and colonial territory, as well as her dynasty, on condition that no resistance is offered. Should there be any resistance, Belgium will risk the destruction of her country and loss of her independence. It is therefore, in the interests of Belgium that the population be called upon to cease all resistance and

[Page 770]

that the authorities be given the necessary instructions to make contact with the German Military Command."


"In the middle of this communication, M. Spaak, who had by his side the Secretary-General of the Department, interrupted the Ambassador: 'Hand me the document', he said. 'I should like to spare you so painful a task.' After studying the note, M. Spaak confined himself to pointing out that he had already replied by the protest he had just made. ***" (TC-58)

The so-called ultimatum, which was delivered some hours after the invasion had started, read in part as follows:

"The Reich Government has for a long time had no doubts as to what was the chief aim of the British and French war policy. It consists of the spreading of the war to other countries, and of the misuse of their peoples as auxiliary and mercenary troops for England and France.

"The last attempt of this sort was the plan to occupy Scandinavia with the help of Norway, in order to set up a new front against Germany in this region. It was only Germany's last minute action which upset the project. Germany has furnished documentary evidence of this before the eyes of the world.

"Immediately after the British-French action in Scandinavia miscarried, England and France took up their policy of war expansion in another direction. In this respect, while the retreat in flight of the British troops from Norway was still going on, the English Prime Minister announced that, as a result of the altered situation in Scandinavia, England was once more in a position to go ahead with the transfer of the full weight of her navy to the Mediterranean, and that English and French units were already on the way to Alexandria. The Mediterranean now became the center of English-French war propaganda. This was partly to gloss over the Scandinavian defeat and the big loss of prestige before their own people and before the world, and partly to make it appear that the Balkans had been chosen for the next theater of war against Germany.

"In reality, however, this apparent shifting to the Mediterranean of English-French war policy had quite another purpose. It was nothing but a diversion manoeuvre in grand style, to deceive Germany as to the direction of the next English-French attack. For, as the Reich Government has long been aware, the true aim of England and France is the

[Page 771]

carefully prepared and now immediately imminent attack on Germany in the West, so as to advance through Belgium and Holland to the region of the Ruhr.

"Germany has recognized and respected the inviolability of Belgium and Holland, it being of course understood that these two countries in the event of a war of Germany against England and France would maintain the strictest neutrality. "Belgium and the Netherlands have not fulfilled this condition." (TC-57).

The so-called ultimatum goes on to complain of the hostile expressions in the Belgian and the Netherlands Press, and to allege attempts by the British Intelligence to bring a revolution into Germany with the assistance of Belgium and the Netherlands. Reference is made to military preparation of the two countries, and it is pointed out that Belgium has fortified the Belgian frontier. A complaint was made in regard to Holland, that British aircraft had flown over the Netherlands country. Other charges were made against the neutrality of these two countries, although no instances were given (TC-57). The document continued:

"In this struggle for existence forced upon the German people by England and France, the Reich Government is not disposed to await submissively the attack by England and France and to allow them to carry the war over Belgium and the Netherlands into German territory. It has therefore now issued the command to German troops to ensure the neutrality of these countries by all the military means at the disposal of the Reich." (TC-57)

It is unnecessary, in view of the documents previously adverted to, to emphasize the falsity of that statement. It is now known that for months preparations had been made to violate the neutrality of these three countries. This document is merely saying, "The orders to do so have now been issued."

A similar document, similar in terms altogether, was handed to the representative of the Netherlands Government; and a memorandum was sent to the Luxembourg Government, which enclosed with it a copy of the document handed to the Governments of Belgium and the Netherlands. The second paragraph of the latter declared:

"In defense against the imminent attack, the German troops have now received the order to safeguard the neutrality of these two countries ***". (TC-60)

The protest of the Belgium Government against the crime which was committed against her is contained in TC-59.

The original plaintext version of this file is available via ftp.

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