THE HAGUE – With a bombardment of British planes at the Hague Bezuidenhout are possibly hundreds of casualties. There large fires raging in the district. Among the rubble is searched for survivors.

This morning around eight o'clock the alarm went off for the first time. Half an hour later a second time, and around nine o'clock the alarm went off for the third time.

When the Allied bombers also appeared on the horizon Hague. A short time later revealed that the aircraft had released their bombs over the Hague Bezuidenhout.

"And then there's an incessant bomb explosion after bomb explosion. The fire department comes into action, where a giant puff designates the place of the crime. "

(Algemeen Handelsblad, 05-03-1945)

Probably when bombing high-explosive bombs used.

new wave

According to eyewitnesses, soon followed by a wave bombers and bombs were dropped again. There followed again explosions.

"They have lost count. The earth trembles. Buildings and entire blocks collapse like houses of cards collapse. Still others are starting to burn and are soon ablaze. "

(Telegraph, 05-03-1945)

The strong westerly winds caused the fire is still further spread in the neighborhood. The fire department could do little against the conflagration, by, among crew and a lack of material. Often there was no firewater available. During the day there was assistance from a large part of South Holland and even from Wormerveer and Zaandam.

People who were on the streets after the first wave fled - because there are not many shelters in Bezuidenhout - were hit by bombs of the second wave. Eyewitnesses tell terrible stories about people who are severely maimed in the street at the Liduinakerk. There are also elderly and children.

Theresiastraat after bombing. Foto: Municipal Hague

Escaped

Bezuidenhout from tens of thousands of people have fled. Eyewitnesses were people in pajamas and barefoot through the streets Voorburg. Others saw white dust.

The people who stayed behind, or that are in the neighborhood continued to assist, have begun to search for survivors between the rubble.


Louise Henriette Street after bombing . Foto: Municipal Hague

Target

It is not clear why the English bombers Hague have elected district targeted. This may have something to do with the missile systems in the Hague Forest, but V2 rockets are over a kilometers away.

The authorities have not yet responded to the bombing.


Hoe ging het verder?

The death toll from the Bezuidenhout located on bomabrdement officially 550. Additionally hit 250 people injured there were some 30.000 homeless. The bombing of Bezuidenhout is high on the list bombing fatalities of World War II in our country. For comparison, the bombing of Rotterdam on 14 mei 1940 took 650 tot 900 lives.

After the bombing of Nijmegen (22-02-1944) met 800 civilian casualties, is Bezuidenhout the bombardment of the second-to-hardest, Which is carried out by the Allies.

In total, 67.000 kilos of high explosive bombs dropped on The Hague district. In Rotterdam (1940) went to 97.000 kilo.

Target

Indeed, the purpose of the bombing was V2 installations in the Hague forest. The V2 rockets were major victims. Many of the V2 rockets were from Wassenaar and The Hague fired. In England fell over 2700 killed by these rockets, after launch were basically unstoppable. Therefore it was the English worth so much to destroy the installations.

Some of the bombers was given wrong information on the spot where the bomb had to be dropped. But other devices, That it had good information, had not affected the Hague Forest.

The British military leaders first came up with the statement that the strong north wind caused the aircraft out rate had fallen. Later found that incorrect location data was transmitted. The pilots had by stating that they had to throw the bomb on an uninhabited residential. That the district was inhabited, they did not.

An officer with the initials LCR was blamed for the by giving the wrong information, even though his supervisor not engaged in checking the data. LCR was reprimanded. Later on showed that there were made more mistakes, but the military leadership which deliberately kept silent.

The bombing of Bezuidenhout took care not to not went through the V2 launches from Den Haag. That same evening were launched two more missiles. One of these missiles, incidentally amounted to Bezuidenhout. In addition, eight firefighters, who were putting, killed.

Sources:

Algemeen Handelsblad – 05-03-1945 – Anglo bombing Hague demands hundreds of deaths

Telegraph – 05-03-1945 – Bombs in The Hague

History of The Hague – Bombing of the Bezuidenhout

Wikipedia – Bombing of Bezuidenhout

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