But next to nightfighters, the Luftwaffe was quite active in the Netherlands during what is called the May-days. Holland was invaded on May 10th 1940 and capitulated on May 15th after the center of Rotterdam was reduced to ashes by a Luftwaffe bombardment on May 14th. Dutch army units put up a good fight on the “Grebbelinie” in the slightly hilly terrain of the midlle of Holland while the Royal Dutch Marines were known among the Germans as “die Schwarze Teufel” defending the Moerdijk bridges south of Rotterdam.
The seemingly quick defeat of the Netherlands was caused for a great part by politicians who were very reluctant to provide the Dutch armed forces with modern weaponry, trusting that Holland would keep it’s neutrality as it had in 1914-1918. Despite the fact that the Dutch “Luchtvaartafdeeling” (Army Air Unit in 1940’s Dutch spelling) had some quite obsolete aircraft and some more modern fighters –but still obsolete by Bf-109 standards- , they managed to destroy 345 German aircraft during those 5 days. 231 of them were Ju-52 transports, ¾ of the transport strength of the Luftwaffe at that time.
The colors I used were RLM 70 for the prop and spinner, RLM 71 Grün and RLM 02 Grau for the upper camo and finally RLM 65 Blau for the underside and sides of the fuselage. All colors were by Gunze Sangyo, I find them very pleasant to use. The markings came from Aeromaster sheet 48-515 “Attack in the West”. There is only one E-4 on that sheet, “Gelbe 6”, flown by Feldwebel Christoph Schugmann of 3./JG 3 in the spring of 1940. I’m not totally sure that this aircraft did in fact take part in the offensive against Holland, but I learned from the discussion group on 12 o’clock High! that 3./JG 3 as a unit did take part in this offensive. I guess that’s close enough for me.
By and large I’m happy with the model and that’s what counts! I’m sorry for the graininess of the pics but that’s because being Dutch I thought I could save some money on the film… I’ll better myself next time! I hope you enjoyed it.
Photos and text © by Erik Bosch