The commemoration of those annihilated and others who fell during the II World War and the celebration of the subsequent freedom are major national events in the Netherlands. These annual events take place on the 4th and 5th of May. The general trend in the last years seems to be an all inclusive venture of getting all citizens and other in the Netherlands to participate in the commemoration and the celebrations. Recently, in a program on Radio 1, one of the most influential radio stations in the country, an expert mentioned that knowledge of these two events ought to be a compulsory feature in the official testing of those wishing to become Dutch citizens.
On 5th May musical formations are playing all over the country at festivals and some (pop) artists are flown by helicopters to various venues to sing a few freedom songs. Every year a general discussion appears in the media relating to whether the Germans of today ought to be allowed to commemorate and celebrate with the Dutch. After all, their state and their forefathers were the ones responsible for extinguishing massive numbers of Jewish persons, Gypsies and others. The common norm appears to be that there is no room right now for reconciliation. The Germans are not particularly welcome.
This year marks the 150th anniversary of the abolition of Dutch slavery in its Caribbean colonies. For many years the 1st July is referred to by Surinamese as Emancipation day. This is a direct interpretation of the abolition of chattel slavery by the Dutch King William III on the 1st of July 1863. In a sense this date has never really carried much favour with persons hailing from the formerly Dutch Antilles. In the case of Curacao, those who seek to commemorate do this mainly on August 17. This is in memory of the slavery rebellion by Tula and others on August 17th, 1795. Many historians and others are of the opinion that this uprising was an important prelude to the abolishment of Dutch slavery.