The Netherlands, also called Holland, is a country in northern Europe, in the region often called the "Low Countries" or "low lands". It borders Germany, Belgium, and the North Sea. It is a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, one of the first parliamentary democracies in Europe. Economically and politically, the Netherlands has been one of Europe's most liberal countries.
The Netherlands was unable to establish a presence in Atlantis. Instead, the Dutch turned their attention to colonizing the east coast of northern Terranova.
In the 1660s, the Netherlands' shipping and colonies were threatened by pirates operating out of Avalon, Atlantis. The Netherlands joined England and its Atlantean colonists in successfully crushing the Avalon pirates.
The Netherlands had already been conquered by the Germans when the Japanese entered World War II. The East Indies were the major goal of the Japanese and being completely unprepared in the Far East, the Dutch were soundly defeated on both land and sea, and thrown out of the Pacific.
Anne Frank and her family immigrated to the Netherlands from Germany due to the rising tide of anti-Semitism under the Nazis. Anne was particularly good at speaking Dutch, which she teased her parents about.
Some Confederate people believed that the Rivington Men came from the Netherlands, as they were often overheard to speak to each other in a foreign language which sounded like Dutch. Interpreter Avram Goldfarb, who had often done mercantile business in Amsterdam, disproved this when he examined a book written in their language, and found that it was neither Dutch nor German, but appeared to be a "mishmash" of several languages including these.
The Netherlands were a NATO member when World War III began. By July 1951, there was a very real possibility that the SovietRed Army and its allies would cross overwhelmed West Germany and invade the Netherlands. In response, the United States withdrew its forward fighters into Dutch territory, and dropped several atomic bombs on the Soviets' forward positions in West Germany, destroying a sizable chunk of their military and forcing a retreat from the Netherlands.
When Heinz Buckliger became Führer of Germany in 2010, he initiated reforms which allowed more freedom for citizens and subjects of the German Reich. In response, the Dutch began demanding more national independence. Several Dutch demonstrators protested on the Adolf Hitler Platz, yelling the slogan Vrijheid (Dutch for Freedom and close to the German Freiheit) and carrying their flags. They were rounded up and arrested by the Security Police. However, they were not summarily executed as had been the custom.
The Netherlands denounced the 2011 SS-led Putsch against Buckliger. Shortly after the putsch collapsed and Buckliger was restored to power, Germany held elections. The Dutch held a general election of their own without German interference and elected a parliament with a non-Fascist majority. The Germans did not intervene.
In 1588, a falling-out between the Dutch and the English fleets allowed the Spanish Armada to rendezvous with Parma's army at Dunkirk. The army was ferried to England, overthrew Elizabeth and replaced her with the Catholic Queen Isabella. Thus deprived of foreign support, the Dutch revolt was suppressed and Holland returned to Catholicism.
When the English revolted successfully against the occupiers ten years later, the Dutch stayed put. Former occupation officer Lope de Vega docked at Ostend on his way back to Madrid.
The Netherlands remained neutral in the Great War, trading with both belligerents and siding with neither. In 1917, the Netherlands became the first truly neutral country to extend diplomatic recognition to the Republic of Quebec.
In the interwar period, the Netherlands became more involved economically with victorious Germany. This relationship was not enough to keep Japan from taking Dutch possessions in Asia. Although the Japanese compensated the Netherlands, there was an underlying threat of force in the transaction.
By the end of the 20th century, Holland was a minor world power, whose modest position was assured as long as there were no major wars or upheavals. Holland's modest empire included the Dutch East Indies between Asia and Australia, and Dutch Guiana in South America. Holland itself shared a long southern border with the French province of Belgium, a western and northern coast on the North Sea, and an eastern border with the Germanies.
In the First World War the Netherlands successfully maintained their neutrality and had profitable trading relations with both sides. In the 1930s, when the specter of a new war in Europe became increasingly manifest, the Dutch expected to repeat the same role as before, and did not build up their armed forces. They did not invest their resources in creating an armored corps or a large air force, both of which had become indispensable for waging a war. This proved a major miscalculation, as German plans for an offensive on the Western Front did include the occupation of the Netherlands and use of its territory to invade Belgium and France.
The German plan was implemented with a surprise mid-winter attack on the Netherlands in 1939, a few months after Germany completed the conquest of Czechoslovakia. A massive invasion on land was accompanied by heavy bombings from the air and the dropping of parachutists behind Dutch lines, a method never before used in warfare.
Dutch soldiers resisted courageously but hopelessly, as did Dutch police who were not trained or equipped to oppose regular soldiers. Dutch resistance was broken after five days by German planes bombing and devastating the defenseless Rotterdam, with enormous loss of life among its civilian population. Rather then have others of their cities suffer the same fate, the Dutch government capitulated, and the German Army continued southward into Belgium.