Wildlife in central The Hague, the Netherlands


This is a video about the Haagse Bos, a woodland in the center of The Hague City in the Netherlands, and its wildlife.

Haagse Bos warden Jenny van Leeuwen writes today (translated):

During our mammal research we found out that in the The Hague Forest there are surprisingly many mammals: wood mouse, common shrew, bank vole, mole, hedgehog, rabbit, red fox, red squirrel, pine marten, polecat, stoat, weasel. After Meijendel, The Hague Forest is best when it comes to mammals in the The Hague green areas. That is a remarkably good result for a forest in the city center of The Hague.

This is a video recorded by a camera trap in the Haagse Bos. A red fox uses a fallen tree to cross water.

Hobby news from the Netherlands


This is a hobby video.

In the Stadhoudersplantsoen in The Hague, year after year, a hobby couple nests. They nest in an old crows’ nest in an old tree which may be cut down soon. Local conservationists have put an artificial nest in another tree not far away, to provide alternative space.

Also, two artificial hobby nests were placed in Sorghvliet park elsewhere in The Hague.

In Leiden, there will be research whether a plan to cut down trees can go ahead or not, as a hobby couple may nest in one of those trees.

Grey heron and big fish, video


This is a video about a grey heron trying to swallow a big fish in the Ypenburg area in The Hague in the Netherlands.

Jan van Wandelen made this video in his backyard on 7 December 2014.

16th century book on fish and whales on the Internet


This Dutch video is about a whale, beached near Antwerp in 1577; as described in Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek about marine animals.

From the National Library of the Netherlands, in The Hague:

Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek

In 1577, at the age of 63, Adriaen Coenensz from Scheveningen, a Dutch fishing port, started his Vis booc. Over a period of three years he collected all kind of information about the sea, the coasts, and coastal waters, fishing grounds and marine animals: 410 pages written by an expert. Throughout his life he had earned his living from the sea, as fisherman, as wreck master of the county of Holland, and from 1574 as official fish auctioneer at Scheveningen.

Digital version of Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek in flash (for newer pc’s)
Digital version of Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek in html (for tablets and older pc’s)

Coenensz made nearly every page into a miniature work of art by framing his texts and illustrations by borders, edges and cartouches painted in water colour. He must have realised the special value of his book, as appears from the minutes of the court sessions in Leiden from 1583. They contain a note indicating that Coenensz asked permission for his book and his collection of dried fish ‘to be shown on the coming free annual fair and the festival of the relief of the city [3 October], receiving from every person five cents and from those wanting to see the book twenty-five’. So looking at his book was five times as much as marvelling at his dried fish. Coenensz certainly cashed in on his knowledge. On the reverse of folium 11 he even promoted it:

‘Whoever reads or studies it
May spread the word to Another
that he may see and hear’.

Beached whale, from Coenensz' book

One of the marvels of the sea that the inhabitants of Leiden could admire in the book was ‘The true Portrait and size of this whale that has been captured on the ij of July AD m.d.lxxvij’, painted in water colour over two pages. Coenensz had drawn this whale after an engraving that had appeared in the same year (1577). Drawing and caption record an event that would also be considered newsworthy in our own time: a whale cast ashore. The whale depicted here landed in shallow waters, the Scheldt near Doel above Antwerp, and attracted a lot of attention. A few years later Coenensz made a second book, based on this manuscript, the whale manuscript, which is now in Antwerp; a third, also with drawings of whales, is part of a collection in Cologne.

Literature

E.Cockx-Indestege, ‘Een walvis gestrand in de Schelde boven Antwerpen op 2 juli 1577′, in: Noordgouw. Cultureel Tijdschrift van de provincie Antwerpen 6 (1966), p. 1-18
K. Barthelmess, ‘Potvisstrandingen in de Lage Landen in de 16de eeuw. Geschiedenis en iconografische ontwikkeling’, in: Op het strand gesmeten. Vijf eeuwen potvisstrandingen aan de Nederlandse kust. [Zutphen] 1992, p. 35-56.

Dutch Islamophobic newspaper ‘news’ turns out to be lies


This video from the USA is called Bush Talks about Crusade on September 16 2001.

Trouw is a Dutch daily newspaper. It was originally founded during the nazi occupation of the Netherlands, as a clandestine anti-occupation voice of Protestant Christians. It has a better reputation than, eg, a daily like De Telegraaf, a rightist paper which during World War II collaborated with the nazis and now has a reputation of xenophobia, sensationalism and being ‘economical with the truth’.

So, when earlier this year, Trouw published a series of articles about the Schilderswijk neighbourhood in The Hague city, these articles looked credible to many people. Most Schilderswijk people are immigrants. The Trouw articles claimed that fanatical Muslims had managed to make the Schilderswijk into a ‘Sharia triangle'; where Dutch laws did not apply any more, and had been replaced by extremely strict Muslim Sharia law rules. Other corporate Dutch news media reproduced this uncritically.

Today, Trouw writes that they now doubt seriously the truthfulness and existence of so-called sources of some of the articles in their paper. These articles are by an editor who has meanwhile been sacked. Trouw refuses to say which articles these are, and what is the name of this (ex-)editor.

There are strong suspicions in the Netherlands that the name of this (ex-)editor is Perdiep Ramesar. And that the untruthful articles are his writings about the so-called ‘Sharia triangle’ in the Schilderswijk. After the ‘Bermuda triangle’ myth, the ‘Sharia triangle’ myth.

So, not just one daily, but big parts of the Dutch corporate media, believe Islamophobic lies. Why? To understand, we have to go back to 2001, when George W Bush and Tony Blair abused the 9/11 atrocities for starting war first in Afghanistan, then in Iraq. Wars based on lies. The wars were not really about religion, more about oil and other economic factors. Still, George W Bush referred to his ‘Global War on Terror’ as a ‘crusade’, giving rise to war propaganda depicting Islam as the enemy.

Recent atrocities by ISIS terrorists in Syria and Iraq, and the re-start of the Iraq war by NATO governments (officially against these atrocities, but, again, more about oil and other economic factors; and in alliance with regimes with links to ISIS, like in Saudi Arabia and Turkey) revived Islamophobia in war propaganda.

In such a climate, the lying Trouw articles contributed to making the immigrant people in The Hague and their Schilderswijk neighbourhood a target of the violent extreme Right. A loose alliance of various Islamophobic extremists, called Pro Patria, tried to march to the Schilderswijk. Then, the Hitler admiring Dutch party Nederlandse Volksunie (a component of the earlier Pro Patria march) tried to march to the Schilderswijk again.

Both the publishing of the earlier lies, and today the secretiveness about the name of the editor and the articles, are not good for the reputation of Trouw. One should hope they won’t be good for the reputation of Islamophobic war propaganda in the Netherlands and elsewhere in general.

Islamophobia at Dutch schools: here.