THE HAGUE / VLAARDINGEN - Fifteen members of the resistance group "de Geuzen" were executed on the Waalsdorpvlakte. Three leaders of the February strike in Amsterdam were also shot.

Last month, eighteen members of the resistance group were sentenced to death. Three minors were pardoned. Yesterday the resistance members received a last visit from the family.

The execution followed today. One of the founders of the resistance group, Bernard IJzerdraat, would have walked to the chariot while singing the psalm verse "Then I will go up to God's altars", who brought those sentenced to death to the Waalsdorpvlakte. The resistance members were executed at 5:00 PM.

Hiking association

The Geuzen are one of the first resistance groups in the Netherlands. The hiking association Flardinga from Vlaardingen is central to this. Several members of the group have run out 14 mei 1940, the day of the bombing in Rotterdam, walked to the disaster area, to see if they can help with the assistance. The disaster in Rotterdam had made a great impression on the members of the walking club.

After a few weeks, the members of Flardinga come into contact with Bernard IJzerdraat, a teacher from Schiedam. He too was furious because of the bombing and wanted to take action against the Germans.

The day after the bombing, IJzerdraat spread a so-called Geuzen report, a chain letter calling for resistance against the occupier.

In one of the letters, three days after the bombing, IJzerdraat painted a particularly gloomy picture for our country.

“All our stocks will be taken away, food, clothes, footwear. Soon we will get the coupon system for anything and everything and after that we can't even get anything on the coupons. Our young men will be forced to work elsewhere for the usurper.”

(Geuzen message no. 2)

After the first meeting between the walkers and IJzerdraat, the resistance group is founded. The group's task was to sabotage and spy on the occupier. Information would be passed on to England.


In the first weeks, sabotage actions were actually carried out. Telephone lines connecting the searchlight installations and the anti-aircraft guns in Vlaardingen were destroyed seven times.

As a result, the resistance group immediately got the attention of the authorities. If a saboteur were caught red-handed, would be shot directly with live ammunition. In September, authorities also threatened retaliation in the newspaper. The local newspaper stated that the "German Weermacht would apply the strictest measures to the Municipality of Vlaardingen and municipal officials".

It was then decided to stop the acts of sabotage and the focus was once again fully focused on gathering information. During the walking tours of Flardinga, data was collected on German troops, anti-aircraft guns, headquarters and ships in port. Lists of NSB members were also drawn up.

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In the meantime, the resistance group was also getting bigger. In the living room of one of the first members, Arij Kop, the new members had to take a Geuzen oath.

β€œIn these serious times I promise to be a good Dutch Geus and to fully and unconditionally comply with the Geuzen Act and the commanders' regulations. I agree that I agree, as soon as I violate my promise in any way, all my rights and possessions pass to and for the benefit of the Geuzen army, or if this is canceled, on and for the benefit of the Dutch constitution. ”

(Gussin's Needle)

Due to the distribution of the chain letters, the resistance group grew larger. Resistance groups also arose in cities such as Rotterdam, Maassluis, Delft, Zwijndrecht and Dordrecht.


The risk of detection quickly increased, due to the growing number of members of the resistance. The first member of the resistance was arrested in November last year. One of the Geuzen, an employee of Wilton Fijenoord in Schiedam, told his relatives that weapons were ready in Vlaardingen to help the liberators. Ultimately, that information ends up at the NSB.

In the weeks that followed, the resistance members were arrested one by one. Be at the hearings, in some cases after torture, other names of resistance members have also been arrested. In total 230 Geuzen arrested.

The Geuzen are held captive in the "Oranjehotel", Scheveningen prison.

Last month, op 19 februari, followed the trial against the resistance members. Eighteen of them were sentenced to death. The judge agreed. Because three of the eighteen members of the resistance are still minors, they were pardoned. A petition for clemency was also filed for the other fifteen members of the resistance, but that was not honored.

β€œA loan of grace was not eligible, organization referred to there, apart from serious acts of sabotage against military establishments, in the most mean way and with the meanest means, as they are otherwise known only to uncivilized peoples, for example, has planned and in a number of cases carried out all kinds of poison murders and attacks on German soldiers. ”

(The Fatherland, 14 maart 1941)

How did the story proceed?

In 1981 a committee was set up in Vlaardingen to collect money for a Geuzen monument, in memory of the fifteen members of the resistance who were shot on 13 maart 1941 and to other Geuzen who died in concentration camps.

The Vlaardingen sculptor Leen Droppert made a monument, that 1983 was unveiled by Queen Beatrix. The bronze statue represents a walking man. In front of him is a pair of lower legs, chopped off the knee.

There is also a monument in memory of the Geuzen at the Emaus cemetery in Vlaardingen. Six of the fifteen Geuzen are also buried there.

Sinds 1987 The Geuzen Medal is also awarded annually to people and organizations that work for democracy or against dictatorship, discrimination and racism.


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