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Interview with veterans Ard Daniëls and Madhu Kasi about the demonstration on Museumplein

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Line up for freedom | James Roolvink with veterans Ard Daniëls and Madhu Kasi

United and Steadfast: “We must not let our country, of which we are proud, go to waste” Veterans of the Dutch armed forces wrote history on Saturday March 20 at the Museumplein in Amsterdam by standing between the police and demonstrators.

Two of the initiators, Ard Daniëls and Madhu Kasi, who both served in Afghanistan, tell interviewer James Roolvink what moved them to their initiative, which they named: In Het Gelid Voor de Vrijheid.

 "We are in the middle," explains Daniëls. “We are there for the police and for the protesters. To ensure that there can be peaceful demonstrations. That is a fundamental right in the Netherlands. ”

According to Daniëls, exercising a fundamental right should not be a point of discussion. "You cannot say, today you have a fundamental right, not tomorrow."

He sees that the right to demonstrate has come under severe pressure. "The violence of the government scares people to demonstrate."

The reason for taking action was the "disproportionate violence" he had seen at some of the demonstrations. The introduction of the curfew also affects him. “In principle, there is now even a 24-hour clock. The government can keep everyone at home if they want to. ”

Kasi emphasizes that the veterans are not there to express any particular opinion.

“What I see is an Iraq veteran, someone who has served in Kosovo, in Lebanon, Afghanistan, who has seen terrible suffering and who does not wish it for their country, which they have fought for. You are there with your honor and your cap and a good heart. ”

“Everyone has a different opinion about the corona measures. Everyone has been touched by it, both the people who are for and against the measures. That is allowed. Just like everyone in the Netherlands is allowed to have their own religion. ”

According to her, it is not about what opinion you have, but about the right to express it. "I found it difficult to see how people literally stood against each other at those demonstrations," Kasi says.

“That's why I joined In Het Gelid For Freedom. I thought, what's going on here? This is our country, of which we are proud. We must not let that go to waste. ”

Kasi and Daniëls emphasize that they also want to support the police with their initiative.

There has been much fuss in the media about a photo showing the veterans saluting the police officers as a jet of water from a water cannon passes over their heads. According to the two, that photo has been misinterpreted by many.

"The greeting is a sign of respect," says Daniëls. "We wanted to show that we respect the police."

"It has been claimed in the media that the police have gunned down the veterans, but the photo clearly shows that this is not true," Kasi explains.

“What I see is an Iraq veteran, someone who has served in Kosovo, in Lebanon, Afghanistan, who has seen terrible suffering and who does not wish it for their country, which they have fought for. You are there with your honor and your cap and a good heart. ”

The two veterans are convinced that the same feelings are present in the police officers, who have to carry out orders.

"We know what it is like to be in their shoes."

Daniëls says to continue with his action “until it is no longer necessary”.

His message is: constancy.

Kasi describes her mission in one word with: unite.

Join. Line up for freedom!
https://inhetgelidvoorvrijheid.nl/ .

See the interview conducted by James Roolvink from Café Weltschmerz

 

This video and the text were produced by Café Weltschmerz. 

Website Cafe Weltschmerz:
https://www.cafeweltschmerz.nl/

Youtube Channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClK9f1anqhuSaqDN5YE-wfw

Oh, and what does Mark Rutte think of the police action?

video

Spread the freedom!

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