Liikekannallepanossa perustettiin vielä keveitä jalkaväkipataljoonia, jotka oli hajautettu ympäri maata jarruttamaan hyökkääjän etenemistä. Kokonaisvahvuus oli 48 rykmenttiä ja rajanvartioinnissa 22 erillistä pataljoonaa.
Panssarijoukkoihin kuului yksi Renault FT 17, jossa oli yksi kuljettaja. Vaunun ainoana tehtävä oli testata erilaisten panssariesteiden toimivuus.
Lisäksi oli kaksi panssariautokomppaniaa, joissa kummassakin oli tusina Landsverk M36- tai M38-panssariautoja. Lisäksi oli hankinnassa kaksitoista DAF M39 -panssariautoa, mutta osa niistä oli edelleen aseistamatta. Alankomaiden panssariaseen täydensi tykistöön kuulunut viiden Carden-Lloyd Mark VI -tanketin muodostama joukkue.
Tykistöllä oli 676 haupitsia ja kenttätykkiä.
Näistä 310 oli osittain Alankomaissa lisenssillä valmistettuja Kruppin 75 millimetrin kenttätykkejä, joita täydensi 52 kappaletta Boforsin 105 millimetrin haupitseja.
Lisäksi oli 144 kappaletta Kruppin 125 millimetrin ja 40 kappaletta 150 millimetrin FH13 tykkiä sekä 72 kappaletta Kruppin 150 millimetrin L/24 ja 28 kappaletta Vickersin 152 millimetrin L/15 haupitseja.
Panssarintorjuntaan oli 386 kappaletta tehokkaita Böhlerin 47 millimetrin L/39-tykkejä, mutta niitä oli liian vähän, vain noin kolmannes tarpeesta.
Alankomaiden lentoyksiköt olivat osa maavoimia, ja niiden kalusto oli 10. toukokuu kaikkiaan 155 lentokonetta.
28 Fokker G.1 kaksimoottorista hävittäjää
31 Fokker D.XXI -hävittäjää
7 Fokker D.XVII -hävittäjää
10 Fokker T.V -kaksimoottorista pommittajaa
15 Fokker C.X -pommittajaa
35 Fokker C.V -pommittajaa
12 Douglas DB-8 -syöksypommittajaa
17 Koolhoven FK-51 -tiedustelukonetta
koneista 74 oli kaksitasoisia. Kaikkiaan 125 koentta oli operatiivisessa käytössä, loput koulutuskäytössä. Lisäksi n. neljäkymmentä lentokonetta kuului laivastoon.
In the Netherlands, all the objective conditions were present for a successful defence: a dense population, wealthy, young, disciplined and well-educated; a geography favouring the defender; and a strong technological and industrial base including an armaments industry. However, these had not been exploited: while the Wehrmacht at the time still had many shortcomings in equipment and training, the Dutch army in comparison was like David compared to Goliath.
The myth of the general German equipment advantage over the opposing armies in the Battle of France was in fact a reality in the case of the Battle of the Netherlands. On the one hand there was the modern German army with tanks and dive bombers (such as the Junkers Ju 87 Stuka) and on the other hand the Dutch army, whose armoured forces comprised only 39 armoured cars and five tankettes, and an air force for a large part consisting of biplanes.
Both in 1931 and 1933, commissions appointed to economise even further failed, because they concluded that the acceptable minimum had been reached and advised that a spending increase was urgently needed. Only in February 1936 was a bill passed creating a special 53.4 million guilder defence fund.
The lack of a trained manpower base, a large professional organisation or a sufficient matériel reserve precluded a swift expansion of Dutch forces. There was just enough artillery to equip the larger units: eight infantry divisions (combined in four Army Corps), one Light (i.e. motorised) Division and two independent brigades (Brigade A and Brigade B), each with the strength of half a division or five battalions. All other infantry combat unit troops were raised as light infantry battalions that were dispersed all over the territory to delay enemy movement.
They made use of many pillboxes, about two thousand in number, but in lines without any depth. Modern large fortresses like the Belgian stronghold of Eben Emael were nonexistent; the only modern fortification complex was that at Kornwerderzand, guarding the Afsluitdijk. Total Dutch forces equalled 48 regiments of infantry as well as 22 infantry battalions for strategic border defence. In comparison Belgium, despite a smaller and more aged male population, fielded 22 full divisions and the equivalent of 30 divisions when smaller units were included.
Exercise Waterlinie 1939. Soldiers try a tank guns to the other side of the
After September 1939, desperate efforts were made to improve the situation, but with very little result. Germany, for obvious reasons, delayed its deliveries; France was hesitant to equip an army that would not unequivocally take its side. The one abundant source of readily available weaponry, the Soviet Union, was inaccessible because the Dutch, contrary to most other nations, did not recognise the communist regime. An attempt in 1940 to procure Soviet armour captured by Finland failed.
On 10 May, the most conspicuous deficiency of the Dutch Army lay in its shortage of armour. Whereas the other major participants all had a considerable armoured force, the Netherlands had not been able to obtain the minimum of 146 modern tanks (110 light, 36 medium) they had already considered necessary in 1937. A single Renault FT tank, for which just one driver had been trained and which had the sole task of testing antitank obstacles, had remained the only example of its kind and was no longer in service by 1940.
There were two squadrons of armoured cars, each with a dozen Landsverk M36 or M38 vehicles, another dozen DAF M39 cars were in the process of being taken into service, some still having to be fitted with their main armament. A single platoon of five Carden-Loyd Mark VI tankettes used by the Artillery completed the list of Dutch armour.
The Dutch Infantry used about 2,200 7.92 mm Schwarzlose M.08 machine guns, partly licence produced, and eight hundred Vickers machine guns. Many of these were fitted in the pillboxes; each battalion had a heavy machine gun company of twelve. The Dutch infantry squads were equipped with an organic light machine gun, the M.20 Lewis machine gun of which about eight thousand were available. This weapon was prone to jamming and not very suitable for offensive operations.
Most Dutch infantry were equipped with the Dutch Mannlicher rifle, a variant on the Steyr-Mannlicher M1895. This weapon had been in service with the Dutch military for over 40 years and its obsolescence had become obvious, but the Dutch military did not have the money to replace it. There were but six 80 mm mortars for each regiment. This lack of firepower impaired the fighting performance of the Dutch infantry.
Despite the Netherlands being the seat of Philips, one of Europe's largest producers of radio equipment, the Dutch army mostly used telephone connections; only the Artillery had been equipped with the modest number of 225 radio sets.
After the German attack on Denmark and Norway in April 1940, when the Germans used large numbers of airborne troops, the Dutch command became worried about the possibility they too could become the victim of such a strategic assault.
To repulse an attack, five infantry battalions were positioned at the main ports and airbases, such as The Hague airfield of Ypenburg and the Rotterdam airfield of Waalhaven. These were reinforced by additional AA-guns, two tankettes and twelve of the 24 operational armoured cars. These specially directed measures were accompanied by more general ones: the Dutch had posted no less than 32 hospital ships throughout the country and fifteen trains to help make troop movements easier.
The Dutch air force, which was not an independent arm of the Dutch armed forces, but part of the Army, on 10 May operated a fleet of 155 aircraft: 28 Fokker G.1 twin-engine destroyers; 31 Fokker D.XXI and seven Fokker D.XVII fighters; ten twin-engined Fokker T.V, fifteen Fokker C.X and 35 Fokker C.V light bombers, twelve Douglas DB-8 dive bombers (used as fighters) and seventeen Koolhoven FK-51 reconnaissance aircraft - thus 74 of the 155 aircraft were biplanes.
Of these aircraft 125 were operational. Of the remainder the air force school used three Fokker D.XXI, six Fokker D.XVII, a single Fokker G.I, a single Fokker T.V and seven Fokker C.Vs, along with several training airplanes.
Another forty operational aircraft served with the marine air service along with about an equal number of reserve and training craft. The production potential of the Dutch military aircraft industry, consisting of Fokker and Koolhoven, was not fully exploited due to budget limitations.
Not only was the Dutch Army poorly equipped; it was also poorly trained. There had especially been little experience gained in the handling of larger units above the battalion level. From 1932 until 1936, the Dutch Army did not hold summer field manoeuvres in order to conserve military funding. Also, the individual soldier lacked many necessary skills. Before the war only a minority of young men eligible to serve in the military had actually been conscripted. Until 1938, those who were enlisted only served for 24 weeks, just enough to receive basic infantry training. That same year, service time was increased to eleven months.
(Holland middle-east army)
K.N.I.L. looked around for a company to produce light gun tanks and turned again to Marmon-Herrington.
The low quality of conscripts was not compensated by a large body of professional military personnel. In 1940 there were only 1206 professional officers present, It had been hoped that when war threatened, these deficiencies could be quickly remedied but following the mobilisation of all Dutch forces on 28 August 1939 (bringing Army strength to about 280,000 men) readiness only slowly improved: most available time was spent constructing defences.
During this period, munition shortages limited live fire training, while unit cohesion remained low. By its own standards the Dutch Army in May 1940 was unfit for battle. It simply could not stage a major offensive, let alone execute manoeuvre warfare.
German generals and tacticians (along with Hitler himself) had an equally low opinion of the Dutch military and expected that the core region of Holland proper could be conquered in about three to five days.