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Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, May 10, 1940, Image 6

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045462/1940-05-10/ed-1/seq-6/

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nt Orders General Mo i After Bombings
Crack Troops Rushed
To Strengthen Lines
Along Borders
Sharp Air Battles Fought
Over Nation as Nazis
Head for France
By the Associated Pree*.
BERN, Switzerland, May 10.—
The Swiss government today ordered
general mobilization beginning to
morrow at dawn and announced
that a precautionary “state of war”
begins at midnight tonight.
The official communique, which
followed a series of bombings and
sharp air battles over Swiss soil,
said the mobilization was ordered
“in view of the profound changes
which have taken place on the west
ern front.”
The 8wiss army, it was said, was
ready "for any eventuality * • • to
face any menace from whatever side
it may come, in conformity with the
absolute desire of the Federation for
The guard over border traffic was
heavily reinforced.
17 Bombs Hit Swiss Soil.
The Swiss general staff announced
that 17 bombs fell on Swiss soil in
the Courrendlin region.
Large forces of crack Swiss fron
tier troops were rushed from the
rearguard to the Germaii and
French frontiers.
It was estimated that 300,000 men
are already in the Winkelried line
facing Germany and in small forti
fications along the French frontier.
A total of between 600,000 and
700,000 men may soon be under
The army command announced an
unidentified bomber dropped several
bombs on the Swiss railway line be
tween Delemont and Moutiers, but
did little damage.
Sharp air battles took place near
Basel, Switzerland, at 12:30 am. to
day. *
Target of Anti-Aircraft Fire.
A German bomber crossed the
frontier at Grenzach and flew over
Basel en route to France. The Ger
man craft was immediately the tar
get of anti-aircraft fire from guns
at Altkirch and Belfort. The plane
returned to Germany at 4:15 am.
Soon afterward, 20 bombers
crossed the frontier at Loerrach,
some of them passing over Swiss
territory on their way to France.
A heavy fog prevented Swiss air
defense from bringing any planes
down. The Nazi aircraft were be
lieved to be those which bombed
Lyons this morning.
A bomb dropped in Delefflont, a
Swiss town near the French frontier,
destroyed the rail track, but train
traffic can be continued.
Following heavy Swiss and French
anti-aircraft fire, the planes re
turned to Germany.
(Continued From First Page.)
gunners landed by parachute in the
Netherlands Interior.
The Netherlands air force also
took to the skies, joining patrols of
British, French and Belgian planes,
and it was reported that at least
six German planes were shot down
In the first hour of warfare.
The Netherlands gave notice that
she considers herself at war with
Dutch Fully Prepared.
From The Hague flew the Nether
lands foreign affairs and colonial
ministers, seeking liaison with allied
leaders in London, lest the Nether
lands be swept by German con
querors before effective help could
be given to stop them.
The Dutch Army was said to have
been fully prepared for the invasion.
Queen Wilhelmina’s soldiery was
said to be putting up strong resist
ance in the east despite one Ger
man thrust which was said to have
carried the invasion 15 miles within
the border.
At various points German trans
ports dumped parachute shock
troops, who came billowing down to
earth for rear-guard assaults on the
Dutch. Many of these men were
reported wiped out.
Bridges over the Maas and Waal
Rivers had been blown up to block
the*overland advance of the Ger
mans. There were indications that
the Netherlands, too, had released
the full force of her inundation de
fenses in threatened areas.
Airdromes Blasted.
Despite the stubborn resistance
of the Dutch air force and anti
aircraft batteries German planes
were said to have landed troops
at some interior points while Hit
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NEWS AT THE STATE DEPARTMENT—Newspapermen early today hovered around the desk of
Michael J. McDermott (seated), chief of the Division of Current Information, State Department,
who is releasing the latest telephonic report from Minister John Cudahy, telling of German
military operations against Luxembourg and Belgium.
ler’s power-diving bombers blasted
at strategic airdromes.
The Germans heavily bombed
Amsterdam's airport at Schiphol,
but were blocked from landing
there by a screening barrage of
anti-aircraft Are.
The explosion of bombs could be
heard clearly in Amsterdam, but
the people there went about their
business much as usual. The only
other outward indications of a de
parture from normal were queues in
front of Amsterdam's banks.
The government immediately put
into force plans for civil defense.
A blackout was ordered starting
tonight. Voluntary civil militia in
Amsterdam was mobilized and ef
forts were made to frustrate any
“fifth column” activities within the
The Dutch had before them the
recent lesson of Germany’s invasion
of Norway in which confusion of
orders, sabotage and treachery with
in Norway aided the German ad
i vance.
Germans Ordered Into Homes. .
All Germans in the Netherlands
wese ordered to remain in their
‘‘Persons arousing suspicion that
they infringe this order expose
therpselves to serious danger for
their lives.” said,a Dutch broadcast.
The militarr"tadvised newspaper
correspondents that telegrams for
dispatch abroad would be handled
as usual, but subject to severe
censorship of anything considered
"alarmist or tendencibus.” No tele
phone calls to foreign countries
were permitted.
At 5:50 a.m. 24 German planes
flew over Rotterdam, dropping down
to an altitude of only about 1,500
feet. It was announced parachute
troops had been captured there and
Deny Nazi Charges.
A statement handed to the Ger
man Minister here denied the Berlin
allegation that the Netherlands had
knowledge of any British-French
plan to invade the Netherlands, Bel
gium and Luxembourg for an at
tack on Germany. That purported
plan had been announced in Berlin
as motivation for the German as
sault against the west.
The invasion of Germany’s gray
green legions came during the night
while most of the Netherlands slept.
They stabbed at the border by land
and the interior by air.
The government indignantly re
jected a German demand for sur
render to the Invading forces, and
Queen Wilhelmina, now 59 years old,
went on the air to proclaim her
‘‘flaming protest” against the Ger
man blow.
Queen Calls Upon Citizens.
The Queen called upon all citizens
to do their duty and accused Ger
many of breaking a “solemn prom
ise” to respect Dutch neutrality.
Netherlands’ Army forces took
stands behind the nation’s elaborate
water defenses and fortifications to
meet the frontier thrusts and, in
the interior, fought fiercely with
parachute-landed German machine
For the parachute* landing of
troops some of the Invaders, accord
ing lo the Dutch, wore Netherlands
uniforms. (Germany denied this
charge immediately—it would be a
violation of the conventions of war.)
The Germans said to have wom
their enemy’s uniform were re
ported to have been surrounded and
At various places German planes
dropped pamphlets which presented
the German case for the invasion
and urged the Dutch to lay down
their arms.
The high command broadcast a
warning to the people to disbelieve
any German announcements of
A Dutch high command com
munique said:
•'German troops passed through
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the Dutch border during the night
and our border troope fulfilled, their
“They succeeded in carrying out
their trust. Bridges over the Maas
and Waal have been demolished by
“East of Arnhem, 16 miles from
the German-Dutch boveter, Germans
have advanced to Ijsel.
“In the interior enemy planes
tried to land and In some places
dropped parachutes and planes
“These landings were partly un
successful and parachutists who
dressed In Netherlands uniforms
have been surrounded and de
“Over various places Germans
dropped pamphlets which are un
true and threats against the Dutch.
“The high command urges the
population not to believe such utter
ances which are only intended to
create disorders.
“The Dutch are executing meas
ures imposed by the acts and words
of tho Queen for the defense of the
Netherlands eoil.”
Inundations on Schedule.
Another communique said that
“air attacks have been triqd on some
airports. The army and the de
fenses are ready. Inundations are
going on as scheduled.”
Observers northeast of The Hague
reported at 5:55 am. that 33 dive
bombers were seen headed toward
the seat of the government where
Queen Wilhelmina and the re
mainder of the royal family live.
A still later announcement by the
general headquarters declared that
the Netherlands government would
never negotiate with the enemy and
elaborated on the warning against
any “false” German reports.
.“distrust all radio news and
pamphlets telling you about stopping
our resistance, about negotiations
with the aggressor or about assist
ance from the German side against
an attack by the allies,” this com
munique said.
"No matter how reliable and
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official these may sound they ean
only come from the enemy.
“Never will the commander In
chief and the government negotiate
with the enemy."
Chamberlain Resumes
Strolls Despite Crisis
Bi th* Associated Press.
LONDQN, May 10.—Getting back
to normal despite the Qerman In
vasion of Belgium and the Nether
lands, Prime Minister Chamberlain
today resumed hi* regular morning
strolls through St. James Park.
Mr. Chamberlain had omitted the
customary walk yesterday In ths
midst of a cabinet crisis.
Political observers said the new
Nazi “blitzkrieg” had made It almost
certain Mr. Chamberlain would re
tain office, at least for the present.
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