They fell for our freedom, they fell for a just society, they
fell for our forbears, for us and for our offspring. We have
a duty to cherish this legacy in the spirit of their sacrifice.
We should never fail to appreciate the value of democracy, freedom
and independence, not least because our soil is drenched with
the blood and tear of those who died for us.
few years ago, a survey was held amongst Dutch people to find
out their appreciation and perception of the Second World war.
The most important conclusion of the survey was that the Second
World War is still very much alive, even amongst younger folk.
Not in terms of a history lesson, but as an inseparable part
of life today. That is a powerful finding, since it means that
current and future generations are willing to graft the lessons
of the Second World War onto our own surroundings, our own life
and our own actions. What happened in the Second World War has
slowly become a benchmark. The war has made us more aware of
human dignity, human responsibilities, social values –
and of the importance of defending these values in our actions,
behaviour and way of thinking. The Second World War is not history.
It is our present and our future.
cemetery marks the resting place of 328 men who helped build
the foundations of our society. Their sacrifice may have been
many years ago, but it has never been forgotten and their legacy
has never waned. We are free, we are privileged and most of
all, we are grateful. That is the reason why we cherish monuments
from wars past and find expression in this recognition: the
sacrifice you made stirs us with courage and inspiration.
Brocken Mayor (2003-2012)
hier voor de Nederlandse versie