More Dutch worried about impending war, loss of guaranteed freedoms
The fear of war among Netherlands residents increased sharply in the past year, according to the annual survey by Centerdata on behalf of the National Committee 4 en 5 Mei. Netherlands residents are also more concerned about guaranteed freedoms not feeling so guaranteed anymore.
About a third of Netherlands residents worry that they or people they love will be involved in a war in the next five years, compared to only about 10 percent in 2021. Older people are generally more afraid of an impending war than younger people. The fear of something like World War II recurring was an often-mentioned concern. “The Russian invasion of Ukraine probably explains these results,” the Committee said.
More people said their sense of freedom has increased in the past years, 20 percent in 2023 versus 11 percent in 2022. That is likely due to the coronavirus restrictions disappearing. In contrast, more people feel that guaranteed freedoms aren’t as guaranteed as in the past - 66 percent this year and 49 percent last year.
As in previous years, most Netherlands residents consider Remembrance Day (85%) and Liberation Day (77%) important. The two days top the list of moments of significance where people feel connected to other Dutch people, outranking King’s Day and major sporting events.
A growing group of people wants to commemorate more than just the Dutch victims of World War II on Liberation Day. 78 percent want to commemorate all Dutch victims of WWII and subsequent war situations and peace operations, and 59 percent want to give other wars attention on the day too.