On the 9th of April, 1940 Denmark was invaded by Germany. With this occupation the Germans promised to treat Denmark as an independent and "neutral" territory, as long as the Danish Government cooporated. An extraordinary governmental constellation consistenting of the 4 major parties* governed during the occupation. The prime minister at the time, Thorvald Stauning, a well-known, some would say infamous** figure in Danish politics, urged the Danes to cooperate with the invaders, in any way possible. Needless to say, the public did not take this well, as they feared that the Germans would do to Denmark, what they had done, (and still were doing) to Poland. Resistance movements began to form over the course of the war, and the Danish government passively resisted to the best of it's ability, it helped evacuate 99% of Country's Jewish population, including my grandfather, but couldn't officially back-up any of the resistance movements. Despite this, Denmark became known as "die Sahnefront" (lit. "the cream front") to the German troops, because it was relatively peaceful compared to the other theaters, even when the final days of the war, when the RAF was bombing targets in Danish cities. After the government had finally been dissolved in 1943, some of the remnants began actively working with the resistances. On the 5th of May 1945, the Germans surrendered and Denmark was liberated. The now-unified resistance took control of the country while the government reconstituted itself. There was much rejoicing, businesses closed "due to bliss", people burned their blackout curtains***, it was finally over.
|Celebration in Copenhagen, May the 5th, 1945|