A United States flag that was used in the original D-Day invasion will soon be returned to its roots in North America. The move comes three years after a Dutch art collector purchased the artefact for almost half-a-million euros.
The US flag flailed in the wind from its position on the stern of the ship Landing Craft Control 60 on D-Day, over 75 years ago. Now, Rotterdam art collector Bert Kreuk will return the flag to the US after purchasing it at a Dallas auction in 2016. Pretty generous, right?
Why is the Netherlands gifting the flag back to the US?
Kreuk always had this intention for the flag, according to NOS, and wanted to make it available for everyone at a North American museum. Kreuk will relinquish his hold on the flag to President Donald Trump during a special ceremony at the White House.
We’re not sure why Kreuk would purchase the flag in the US for some serious moolah, only to gift it back three years later – it’s not particularly Dutch after all. But, we hope the flag enjoyed its overseas veterans holiday.
Onze Koning heeft President #Trump uitgenodigd naar Nederland te komen. Om te herdenken én zodat eigenaar Bert Kreuk de #DDay vlag terug kan geven aan het Amerikaanse volk. Vandaag al in @telegraaf Het hele verhaal vrijdag om 20.25 bij #WNL op @NPO2 in De reis van de D Day vlag pic.twitter.com/W7Tb8GD5aM
— WNL Vandaag (@WNLVandaag) May 29, 2019
Once returned, the flag will then be displayed in all its red-and-white striped glory at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. We can already hear the opening notes of ‘Star-spangled Banner’ playing.
The Dutch are heading to the White House
However, it’s not quite the way Kreuk intended to hand over the prized possession. Kreuk actually wanted Trump to come to the Netherlands and collect it – but, that got shut down by Trump pretty quick.
Thankfully, Kreuk won’t be the only Dutchie at the White House that day. He’ll also be joined by Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, who’ll be making only his second visit to Donald Trump’s home.
Rutte will be present in the land of the eagles on a trade mission to Boston, but will make a detour to Washington DC to meet with the US President and perhaps repair the stressed relationship after Trump complained about Dutch NATO defence spending, and asked for help defending against Iran in the oil-region the Strait of Hormuz.
What happened last time Rutte and Trump met?
The last meeting the two leaders had didn’t go quite as planned – in fact, Rutte enjoyed international media attention after interrupting Trump with a flat-out ‘No’ when Trump started to get a little too, well, Trump.
Regardless, it’s a pretty generous offer from our good-old art collector Kreuk – let’s just hope Trump doesn’t mistake the gift as a white flag, because the Dutch aren’t known for rolling over.
But, we can brush the latest tensions and petty politics of today aside. The Netherlands will never forget their liberation by the US during WWII, and continues to honour and thank the country for it today.
What do you think of the donation of the US flag? Generous motion? Or does it belong in Europe?
Source feat pic: U.S. Embassy The Hague on Flickr. Public Domain.