The Never-Ending War by Martin Roemers

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Oswald Van Ooteghem (born 1924), a Belgian veteran of World War II (WW2).  ."I come from a nationalist Flemish family and as a boy I was an active member of a nationalist Flemish youth movement.  Before the war, the rights of the Flemings were denied in Belgium and there was mass unemployment and corruption.  In Germany, they had managed to find work for six million unemployed in a few years and had introduced many progressive social measures.  I went to the 'Schaffendes Volk' exhibition in Dusseldorf with my father in 1937, where the economic and technological successes of the Third Reich were on display.  We were really impressed. During the occupation, there was widespread collaboration with the Germans in Belgium.  When war broke out with the Soviet Union, the nationalist Flemish leaders urged the Flemish youth to fight 'for Christian civilisation', 'against the godless Bolsheviks' and to 'win a place of equal standing for Flanders in the new Europe'.  As a 17-year old Catholic boy full of idealism, I joined the Volunteers Legion of Flanders, which was later involved in the Waffen SS."."I came back from the war as a confirmed pacifist.  Had I known what war really was, I would never have taken part in it.  But I was born a Flemish nationalist and I will die a Flemish nationalist." CHECK with MRM/FNA