July 27, 2020

Horse helped determine law in the age of the Internet

Filed under: Animals,Dutch first,Technology by Branko Collin @ 2:48 pm

It was 1914, there was a world war being fought, and a clever man thought he had found a way to smuggle a horse.

In that year, exporting horses from Azewijn, in the neutral Netherlands, to warring Germany was illegal. As local newspaper De Graafschap-bode told the story at the time:

L. Lueb, 32 years of age and farmer in Klein Netterden (Germany) is being tried for exporting a horse on 7 September 1914 from the municipality of Bergh across the border at Klein Netterden, by pulling said animal through the water of said canal towards the place from which he was pulling whilst standing on the German side of the border canal while the horse was on the other side of said canal, with clear intent and by means of a rope tied around the neck of said horse.

People used so many words in those days…

The courts could just smell that Mr Lueb was guilty, but legally, a whiff is not enough. A law needs to be found by which to convict a person. But more than that, they had to agree they had jurisdiction. The law rarely determines that somebody can be tried for something they did in another country.

The result was that the case ended up before the Dutch supreme court.

The original court held that not the location of the perpetrator, but rather the ‘exportable object’ determined the location of the crime, Haal Je Recht writes.

The appeals court disagreed and came up with a post-human solution: the rope is an extension of the arm, and the arm was on Dutch soil at the time of the crime. The Dutch supreme court reworded the verdict, but came pretty much to the same conclusion: one can use an instrument to act in a different place from where one currently is.

In our current day and age, it has become much easier to use an instrument to act in a different place. The supreme court referenced the Case of the Horse of Azewijn as recent as last year when it convicted skimmers who had tried to plunder Dutch bank accounts from an ATM in Milan, Italy.

In 1915, Mr Lueb was convicted to a prison sentence of three months. What happened to the horse, I don’t know.

Photo of he German – Dutch border canal near Netterden by Pieter Delicaat, some rights reserved.

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June 22, 2013

Rob Scholte Museum opens for one more day in Den Helder

Filed under: Art by Branko Collin @ 12:13 pm

Painter Rob Scholte has opened up his collection of contemporary art to the public.

Lost Painters points out that Scholte owns lots of works from artists of his own generation—Peter Klashorst, Mel Ramos, Georg Dokupil, Rene Daniels, Rob Birza, Rob van Koningsbruggen and Jeff Koons—but the online art magazine is especially enamoured with a large collection of covers that Jan Sluijters created for magazine De Nieuwe Amsterdammer (later De Groene Amsterdammer, now just De Groene). Sluijters, a well-known painter in his own right, sharply criticized the profiteering attitude of the Dutch government during World War I through his covers. Scholte displays 70 of them in chronological order.

The exhibit in an office building next to the Den Helder railway station lasts only four days. You will have to be quick if you want to catch it, the last day is tomorrow.

If you cannot make it the report at Lost Painters has got plenty of photos of the exhibit.

(Illustration: one of Sluijters’ WW I covers)

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June 20, 2009

World War I museum opens in Alkmaar

Filed under: General,History by Branko Collin @ 10:25 am

A museum consisting largely of dioramas of the Great War will open at 2 pm today in the Kruithuis (old munitions house) in Alkmaar, Noord Holland. Named Le Poilu after the nickname unshaven French soldiers acquired in the war, the museum mainly looks at the Battle of Verdun, where 300,000 soldiers died and many more were wounded. The museum was founded by Peter Wories from nearby Heiloo, who has been fascinated by WWI ever since he found out that his grandmother was originally from Antwerp, but fled the city to the Netherlands when the Germans attacked in 1914.

The originally medieval museum building is attached to the old high school in which in 1914 German soldiers were interned. The Netherlands remained neutral during the war, or rather, were allowed to remain neutral, but being so close to the action the country did suffer from the fallout. It harboured many Belgian refugees, and because supply lines across the North Sea had become unsafe, suffered from food scarcity.

Museum website, via RTV-NH (radio). Photo of poilu and sculptor Jean Boucher by an unknown photographer.

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