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  #21  
Old 11-10-2008, 07:05 AM
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Originally Posted by lucien View Post
I'm afraid our dear beloved Queen Juliana didn't always go by the rules & guidelines we thought she always has either.All I hope is it will be a fair piece of work,fair to all parties involved,thruthfull,leaving little to the imagination.
I do hope so!
The only thing I fear is that the report of the commission of enquiry will be a complete disappointment. It now has a mythical status. One interview with van Molecaten (like lunshof's) could have been enough for the commission to determine that the Baron was unfit for his job and ought to leave court. Besides the sacking of the van Molecaten-clan and the removal of Hofmans the only political consequence of the affair seems to have been the remodeling of the information service. Unofficialy the marriage was 'saved' but it took (according to bernhard) many years before pappie and mammie were at ease with each other again.
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Old 11-10-2008, 10:52 AM
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TV news program Één Vandaag will show footage tonight of Prince Bernhard while saying he hoped the report would never be released and he rather saw it burned then anything else.The Prince told his biographer Alden Hatch in the early 1960's.Hmm,we'll see.
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  #23  
Old 11-11-2008, 10:45 AM
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I saw half of that programme actually, the prince is telling things to Alden Hatch that we already read before, just to hear him say it is new (to me).

---
An article from the Algemeen Dagblad, with the title:

'Bernhard begged Juliana to stay'. In a letter of 18 September 1956 Prince Bernhard begged her not to divorce: 'otherwise we will give our family the name of a 3rd rate balkan monarchy'.

Some other things:
- Bernhard introduced Greet Hofmans to the Queen, in the hope that she could heal princess Christina (still Marijke at the time).
- During the war he had an affair with Lady Ann Orr (which was known) and with Lady Penelope Aitken (which is new). Lady Penelope later became a good friend of Juliana.


Article in Dutch here.

--
The Volkskrant has another article, where Fasseur talks about the myths around the Hofmans affair. The queen never threatened to abdicate while Bernhard never had the idea to remove her to the Ursula Clinic in Wassenaar. The infamous stadholdersletter was not found either.

Prime Minister Drees already in 1951 called Greet Hofmans 'Rasputin' but he did not do anything until in 1956, when a commision of 3 wise man was formed (Beel, Gerbrandy and Jhr. Tjarda van Starckenborch Stachouwer, who removed Juliana's side of the courtiers.

Fasseur praises the Queen for being so open about the matter so shortly after the death of her parents (only 4 years ago).

Article in Dutch here.

--
The NRC starts with a more sensational headline: 'The Resistance Threatened to Murder Hofmans'. Greet Hofmans and COunt Walgraven van Heeckeren van Molecaten received threatening letters by mail in 1956. They letters said that they had to leave court voluntairily otherwise they would be shot by former members of the resistance. The use of force was also mentioned by resistance fighters Tromp and Schutte, they even discussed the matter with princess Wilhelmina (!).

More in Dutch here.
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Old 11-11-2008, 11:34 AM
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Some information from royalblog:

Queen Juliana was well aware about the ways of her husband. In 1940 she already writes him a letter, saying: 'I do not know in whose company you are sleeping, I know nothing, nothing, nothing!'.

More in Dutch here.

--
And the birthday of prince Bernhard was always celebrated on the wrong day, he was born on June 28th and not on June 29th. Fasseur found a document in the royal archives about the matter.

More in Dutch here.

--
Due to the publication of the book on the Greet Hofmans affair, Prime Minister Jan-Peter Balkenende released a statement this afternoon, em[hasizing the important role that both Queen Juliana as Prince Bernhard played in society. He points out that we should not forget the positive stories about their lives and that the two later in life had a better relationship.

More in Dutch here.
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  #25  
Old 11-11-2008, 01:34 PM
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Old 11-11-2008, 01:37 PM
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Ah, Greet Hofmans the pacifist faith healer - I can lively imagine a country in the Cold War can't use such influence on its queen.
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  #27  
Old 11-11-2008, 01:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pier Gerlofs Donia View Post
Ah, Greet Hofmans the pacifist faith healer - I can lively imagine a country in the Cold War can't use such influence on its queen.
The Cold War had nothing to do with it,in essence that is,it's that Hofmans constantly issued orders/demands/strong requests to Juliana,and the latter honoured each.Not a healthy attitude by a Constitutional Monarch,and she wasn't mentally healthy.

I can't understand that Drees called Hofmans Rasputin in as early as 1951 and then didn't react untill 1956.It is incomprehenseble.
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Old 11-11-2008, 01:53 PM
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The Cold War had nothing to do with it,in essence that is,it's that Hofmans constantly issued orders/demands/strong requests to Juliana,and the latter honoured each.Not a healthy attitude by a Constitutional Monarch,and she wasn't mentally healthy.

I can't understand that Drees called Hofmans Rasputin in as early as 1951 and then didn't react untill 1956.It is incomprehenseble.
It is. Drees was an old man, that goes to show. I can understand Juliana was a bit emotionally unstable (she became very demented later in life). It was most likely due to the eye problems of her youngest daughter, that is why Hofmans was called for in the first place.
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  #29  
Old 11-11-2008, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Pier Gerlofs Donia View Post
It is. Drees was an old man, that goes to show. I can understand Juliana was a bit emotionally unstable (she became very demented later in life). It was most likely due to the eye problems of her youngest daughter, that is why Hofmans was called for in the first place.
Yes,we all know that,on Marijke's eyesight ( read my posts on it),but she (God have her soul) was just a bit more then just mentally unstable at the time,if you read the excerpts of the book.I'm out and about first thing tomorrow to purchase the book

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  #30  
Old 11-11-2008, 02:11 PM
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Yes,we all know that,on Marijke's eyesight ( read my posts on it),but she (God have her soul) was just a bit more then just mentally unstable at the time,if you read the excerpts of the book.I'm out and about first thing tomorrow to purchase the book

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It seems she was indeed. Runs in the family, I presume. William the III, her grandfather, also was a bit of an excentric figure (King Gorilla). I'll purchase the book soon, I am much interested about this matter. I do think, however, Juliana did not change as much from Greet Hofman, but also from her stay in Canada, which made her see many things in a different view.
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  #31  
Old 11-11-2008, 03:35 PM
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Look, lets simply read the book before we decide that he Orange-Nassaus have a tradition of being mentally unstable. That was exactly the thing Bernhard wanted us to believe in the first place. And I don't think Drees age (he died 'only' 31 years later) had anything to do with his attitude. At that time the Monarchy was almost sacred and politicians had a lot of respect (and personal distance) towards them.

I find it simply heartbreaking that our present Queen and her sisters had such a bad relationship with their mother and maternal grandmother. They reffered to Wilhelmina as 'cold' ( living in the 'koude loo castle') whilst they found their paternal grandmother very 'warm' (living in Warmelo Castle).

This crisis must have been a terrible strain for Wilhelmina also. Wilhelmina stated she was afraid of a german putsch by Berhard and his mother. Although that didn't happen then, it almost seems that Beatrix nowadays is more a Queen to Bernhard and Armgards liking and standards than to that of Juliana and Wilhelmina. Im curious if Beatrix and Juliana respected and liked each other in later years...
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  #32  
Old 11-11-2008, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by lucien View Post
The Cold War had nothing to do with it,in essence that is,it's that Hofmans constantly issued orders/demands/strong requests to Juliana,and the latter honoured each.Not a healthy attitude by a Constitutional Monarch,and she wasn't mentally healthy.

I can't understand that Drees called Hofmans Rasputin in as early as 1951 and then didn't react untill 1956.It is incomprehenseble.
I just saw the EO with ' Netwerk', they dedicated the entire programme to the presentation of the Hofmans book. To my surprise even Fasseur said that the influence that Hofmans had over Queen Juliana was limited. It was first and foremost a marriage crisis. They showed quotes from Juliana and Wilhelmina, complaining about Bernhards character. Wilhelmina says something like ' One day he says this, one day he says that. Sometimes good, sometimes bad and often it is all just a comedy'. She also says that he thinks that he is on an eternal vacation (or something to that order). And also surprising was that Queen Juliana was not so 'in love' with Bernhard many think, according to several people they interviewed her words seemed pretty harsh and maybe even bitter.

Elsbeth Etty also speech during the book presentation, while Fasseur remained rather respectful towards Bernhard she was even more critical, putting much of the blame for the failed marriage on him and his 'male chauvinist pig' behavior, so to speak. Wan't it the plan that Etty would write the biography on Queen Juliana btw?

Tonight both Etty as Fasseur will be present during the live broadcast of the programme 'Pauw and Witteman' , it seems they dedicate the entire programme to the matter. I have to say I am surprised by the amount of attention the publication gets, it is the 1st news story actually, while there is very little 'news'.

Femke Halsema (Green Left Party) was also in Netwerk. She commented that much of the book was highly personal, sad an almost embarrasing to read. She also questioned the way the Beel report has been released, maybe that should change for the future. At the moment the report is not publically released but included in Fasseurs book, which is expensive.

---
And indeed Mandrake, from what seems to be getting attention in the press today, it is not Juliana's supposed mental unstability that gets the attention, but more Bernhards role in the marriage. I never knew that Wilhelmina was afraid of a German putch at the palace, but there was little love lost between her and Armgard. It must have been rather bitter for her to witness her daughters marriage fall apart after going to such great lenghts to get a suitable husband of Juliana's own choise. And even more bitter indeed that the bond with her eldest grandchildren was under strain too, perhaps that explains why Beatrix did not get a tiara for her birthday while Irene did (in a cardboard box so the story says).
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  #33  
Old 11-11-2008, 04:41 PM
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And quite against the character of the newspaper, the Telegraaf has the least sensational headline, claiming; 'Report Hofmans is an anti-climax'. They quote prof. Fasseur, who stated that the report of Beel had very little new information and was an anti-climax, though some private letters were interesting indeed.

Apparently the commission concluded that Hfmans and her clan had to leave court, while Bernhard had to change his life for the better. Juliana kept her end of the bargain, Bernhard obviously didn't keep his.

Article in Dutch here.

The newspaper also published some quotes from the book, which can be read in Dutch here. Among other things, Bernhard comments in a letter to Juliana that he only had to deal with two jealous husbands while he was in London, thus far. On 2 August 1955 Juliana writes him a letter (while they live under the same roof!!!) saying she wants to end the marriage. She also writes to the commission Beel, saying that Bernhards wants to make her life a hell on purpose.
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  #34  
Old 11-11-2008, 04:41 PM
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Where were the four young princesses in all this? I once read that Beatrix and Irene took their father's side while Margriet and Christina took their father's. Is that true? Does anyone know how all this affected the sisters' relationships with each other?
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Old 11-11-2008, 04:48 PM
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It is said that Beatrix and Irene sided with their father, who they adored. Princesses Margriet and Marijke were probably too young to play a role in the affair. What effect it had on the long term relationship between Beatrix and Juliana is not clear, but some sources say that their relationship was far from an ideal mother-daughter one.


---
NRC Handelsblad has parts of their articles in English, so here the one on today's release of the raport:

Quote:
New book to shed light on marriage of former Dutch queen

Published: 11 November 2008 14:00 | Changed: 11 November 2008 17:35

By Bart Funnekotter

After 52 years of secrecy, a new book on the marriage of the former Dutch queen, Juliana, and Prince Bernhard sheds light on the role of faith-healer Greet Hofmans in the marital relationship. Juliana died in 2004.
The fact that the Dutch royal couple’s marriage had turned into a form of trench warfare was the best-kept secret in the Netherlands in the 1950s. Then on June 13, 1956 the German magazine Der Spiegel hit the newsstands with an article which lifted the cloak of secrecy shrouding Palace Soestdijk where the royal couple lived.

The article ‘Between Queen and Rasputin’ gave a lengthy account of the problems afflicting the Dutch royal marriage. It described German-born Prince Bernhard as being trapped between the queen and her confidante Greet Hofmans. He had ‘lost’ his wife to the faith healer.

New revelations followed, particularly in the foreign press, about the conflict between followers of the prince and the circle surrounding Queen Juliana. The Netherlands was in uproar. The affair had far-reaching implications. In the summer of 1956, a divorce, the abdication of the queen and a constitutional crisis were all serious considerations.

Concealed archives

The affair has recently resurfaced because a book by historian Cees Fasseur on the marriage of Queen Juliana and Prince Bernhard is to be published on Tuesday afternoon. The book, which covers the marriage in the period 1936-1956, includes information from long-concealed archives about Hofmans.

The marital difficulties of Prince Bernhard and Queen Juliana are attributed to the influence which faith healer Hofmans had on the queen. Greet Hofmans was brought to the royal court in 1948 by Bernhard, the man who was later to become her arch enemy. He hoped she would be able to heal an eye disease suffered by their new-born daughter, Princess Marijke.
Read the entire article here.

----
And the Reformatorisch Daglad has a rather original way of putting it, accoring to them the court was responsible for the separation between Queen and Prince, read more in Dutch here.
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  #36  
Old 11-11-2008, 05:21 PM
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From Pauw & Witteman:

According to Prof. Fasseur the relationship between Bernhard and his private secretairy Miss Cornelia (Cocky) Gilles was a platonic one. The one with Lady Penelope Aitkens might have been platonic too.

It was General Koot, a friend of Bernhard, who introduced him to Greet Hofmans, not the Heeckerens. Prince Bernhard asked advice to Hofmans about his horses, to make them run harder. She told him that he should give the horses meatballs. The stableboys did just that, but it didn't work. Since Bernhard probably looked like a fool he became angry and told his wife that Greet Hofmans had to go.

Fasseur denies that Hofmans hypnotised Juliana, as Bernhard claimed. She just told the Queen what she wnated to hear at that point. Etty claims that Bernhard blew it all out of proportions to use to his own advantage, Juliana wanted to get away from the humiliations, influence etc. of Bernhard, Bernhard didn't want this to happen and got the cabinet involved.

According to Fasseur Queen Juliana also broke off all contact with her mother-in-law, princess Armgard. She became more and more isolated and thus more under the influence of Greet Hofmans and her circle.

Fasseur is rather direct about the prince, that he twists his story to his own advantage and has a rather selective memory. He also says it is possible that prince Bernhard was behind the letters in which it was threatened that Greet Hofmans and the van Heeckerens would be killed, but another option is Francois van 't Sant (to make his role in the RF even more interesting and mysterious).

-
Among other things, the commission also adviced Queen Juliana to start horseback riding again on saturdays, with her husband and daughters. She was allowed to keep some of her confidentes and kept in touch, via-via with Greet Hofmans. Etty is right IMO in her final remarks: Juliana had to give up everything, Bernhard did nothing, he could keep his courtiers, his private secretaries, his mistresses etc. Elspeth Etty made a plea that another book should be written, where the focus lies on the perspective of Juliana. Queen Juliana was worried about Prince Bernhards uncontrolable activities, and warned the government about the Bilderberg conferences, among other things. She was quite right, as was proven 20 years later in the Lockheed affair. Sadly nothing was done with Juliana's warnings.

The programme ended with the christmas speech of Queen Juliana in 1956, in which she talks about malicious letters and more, she ended with the sentence: 'Don't I have the right to be who I am?'
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Old 11-11-2008, 06:30 PM
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A letter that Prince Bernhard wrote to his wife on 18 September 1956:

Dear Lula,

Due to our conversation of two days ago, and thinking about all that ha happened I want to write a few things down.

1) The children and I do love you, but you and not your friends from the circle of Miss Hofmans!
2) The children and I truly want you back - but in a way that we can be sure that you can not be influenced badly anylonger. We want the real, old Lula back, but not the gramaphone record with the words etc. of the Van Heeckerens or others. Because it is scary to see and to hear how you are hypnotised, so to speak, by them and by all they say and think. This undermines our confidence in the future forever.
3) You have many good friends, who are ready for you, to take the positions of the friends of Miss Hofmans (those who do not love you but who use you for their own good) while the ones that I mean do love you. (...)

Read the bible, without help. I hope and pray tht i fidn your situation bettered when I return and that you will hear Gods voice, without 'translator' because in my opinion that is a incorrect one. Gods word doesn't need a tanslator, when people claim that they do, then those people are influenced by wrong sources.
I will pray for you and the children, that you may see the true light and true love and that you may be part of it again.
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Old 11-11-2008, 06:50 PM
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From Pauw & Witteman:

According to Prof. Fasseur the relationship between Bernhard and his private secretairy Miss Cornelia (Cocky) Gilles was a platonic one. The one with Lady Penelope Aitkens might have been platonic too.
Cocky Gilles, in later years, was the person who made the annual photograph with both Juliana and Berhard on it that was sent as a Christmas card to their relatives and friends. What the nature of the relationship between Bernhard and Cocky might have been, Juliana did not oppose Cocky Gilles.

After all these tv-broadcast and articles I can't help thinking of the sermon that W. Hudig-Semeijns de Vries van Doesburgh delivered at the funeral of Juliana.
She quoted a letter from Juliana who stated that the quest for "peace' was the biggest political fight she had to face and that she was ready for it whatever the consequence. Juliana also stated that most of her private suffering was unknown to others and that could remain so. Juliana wrote that she was tended to see the good side of most people but that she was not so stupid to deny that they could have ulterior motives. (reference to the hofmans group??)
In the 1980's when Juliana was no longer queen she could be herself and restored contacts with the van Molecaten's and others. Then she stated that their movement of the 1950's had been a vanguard and that they were ahead of their time back then.

Prince Bernhard in later years took much trouble to defend his own actions and his mother(s). On his funeral it was said that even in the times of the marital troubles his mother had still shown affection for both parties, Juliana and Bernhard. Now we know that at that time not only Wilhelmina but also Juliana loathed Armgard.
---
Marengo: the tale about the tiara seems telling. Although it is still unknown if Beatrix recieved an family heirloom for her 18th birthday, Irene certainly did. In later years Irene organised (not surprisingly) with the help of Wilhelmina conferences at the big Loo Palace for international youth.
Irene, with her spiritual side, really resembles her mother, and grandmother in that way.

The suggestion Fasseur made on P&W to write an play (why not a book?) on Francois van 't Sant was a nice suggestion. According to the book (quoted in netwerk) this man was the only person during the entire crisis who was on speaking terms with all involved parties.
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Old 11-11-2008, 10:57 PM
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Marengo, thanks for all the information you've posted in this thread. I didn't know very much about any of this, and it's all fascinating.
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Old 11-12-2008, 02:21 AM
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A letter that Prince Bernhard wrote to his wife on 18 September 1956:

Dear Lula,

Due to our conversation of two days ago, and thinking about all that ha happened I want to write a few things down.

1) The children and I do love you, but you and not your friends from the circle of Miss Hofmans!
2) The children and I truly want you back - but in a way that we can be sure that you can not be influenced badly anylonger. We want the real, old Lula back, but not the gramaphone record with the words etc. of the Van Heeckerens or others. Because it is scary to see and to hear how you are hypnotised, so to speak, by them and by all they say and think. This undermines our confidence in the future forever.
3) You have many good friends, who are ready for you, to take the positions of the friends of Miss Hofmans (those who do not love you but who use you for their own good) while the ones that I mean do love you. (...)

Read the bible, without help. I hope and pray tht i fidn your situation bettered when I return and that you will hear Gods voice, without 'translator' because in my opinion that is a incorrect one. Gods word doesn't need a tanslator, when people claim that they do, then those people are influenced by wrong sources.
I will pray for you and the children, that you may see the true light and true love and that you may be part of it again.
Don't forget that Bernhard was,and always behaved like,a conniving denying spoiled rotten german boy ( who's Ich habe es nicht gewüsst is still a popular phrase...).Not to speak of that woman,his mother,the haunty taunty conniving former german baroness,( who lived with her lover,a self proclaimed Colonel by the name of Pantchoulidzew,(Who btw,as it was proven,later helped to embazzle the Lockheed bribe on a Swiss bankaccount for Bernhard) who later thought it beneath her to attend the wedding of dear Pietie ( Margriet) because she married a commoner,dear Pieter.

That nonsens about the Cold Loo and the Warm Lo (Loo meaning in english lea,an open space in the woods,instead of in this case,a royal flush).

"Cold Loo" referring to Het Loo Palace,residence of Queen Wilhelmina and Warm Loo is "Warmelo" the castle purchased by Bernhard,with or without bribes,for his mother.

It was somehow another silly story that the 4 Princesses preferred Armgard over Wilhelmina.This is not true.The Princesses spend many a summer at the grounds of Het Loo Palace with their grandmother there and to this day hold dear memories of these times.All four of 'm.

But none of the present "media-minkukels" seem to know that,small wonder,they were not even planned at the time,and thruthfull stories never sell,gotta make it juicyer a la van der Linden.

Van Heeckeren van Molecaten knew Bernhard and HE introduced Hofmans to him.Koot is a newcomer in this story.It was after a while,maybe two years or so,that he,Bernhard,wanted to put Hofmans to the test,and came up with that horse,and what could be done to make it ever win a throphy.She failed and gave the sillyest answer and it was then Bernhard saw she was a fraud,it was then he told Juliana so,and it was then he also said the van Heeckerens had to leave as through Hofmans,that aristo family clique got way to much influence over the Queen,and only because of that,not because of an overdose of braincells,Vna Heeckeren van Molecaten was born without much of a cell in his head and if it wasn't for Hofmans,would never have gotten his position as private secretary to HM.But Hofmans could easily use van H as he was to dumb to see through all the conniving,busy as he was,with his wife Rita and his mother the Grandmistress,to play their own game and gain even more influence that way.As that was the game of the day at the then Court,individuals and whole groups of courtiers against each and everyone else just to gain a influancial position,a snake nest,it had to be rotted out.

And like I said before,all this impregnated our present beloved Queen and it was then and there she made up her strongwilled mind that that was never ever to happen again.Hence the strictly managed present day Court and hence her insisting to be addressed as Majesty instead of her mothers "mevrouw".There had to be a distance and their had to be brains instead of empty titles and a clustering of aristo's at Court who would again get the silly idea it was actually them that "ruled",and thus claim a position thet would never posess.


Are you still with me?

Maybe you've already gathered I'm not much of a Bernhard fan,yes he did a lot for our country,he really did,like bribing the Perons on behalve of the Dutch government with millions,a Royal Order and Evita with a stunning emarald necklace made by Steltman The Hague,in order to win a railway order.Ofcourse it all payed off,and as even the governments bribed to gain whatever,how easy it must have been for our spoiled rotten german boy to jump the bandwagon and put a dime here and a nickle there in his own pocket while he took the ride?Small wonder,that because of that alone,he wasn't willing to leave the Palace at Juliana's request.All that gone?Imagine.Never.So,he saw to it that an interview was published in a German magazine,and spilled all the beans on the crisis at Court.
In time to save the Monarchy from the ultimate embarrassment,but most of all he saved his own butt.

Just a little side info on how things also were at Court at the time in light of yesterdays book by mr.Fasseur.
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