In Land of Mine, Germany has surrendered in 1945, and its forces are leaving Denmark after occupying it for five years.

A Danish sergeant, driving by a long line of tired and dirty German soldiers, spots one carrying a crumpled Danish flag. The sergeant jumps out of his Jeep and headbutts the German soldier, screaming "That’s not your flag!". He keeps punching the knocked down soldier until there's blood everywhere, while the other soldiers keep walking resignedly.

Why did a German soldier carry a Danish flag?


Without a picture, I cannot see the context in which the flag was carried (e.g. proudly waving it, or carrying it neatly folded).

Assuming the German soldier wasn't proudly waving it; could he not be taking home spoils of war? Just because Germany lost the war does not mean that no German regiment ever won a battle.

From the same World War II, plenty of US forces returned home with swords that they had looted from fallen Japanese soldiers. Although the US won the war and Germany did not; the principle remains the same.

Edit You added the context of the flag carrying, so I'll updte my answer accordingly.

There are two points of view here. The Danish soldier's and the German soldier's.

The Danish soldier has presumably interpreted the Danish flag being carried by the German soldier as a trophy. He think the German soldier is taking this flag home, because he managed to loot it from somewhere, and it is a memory of something important (most likely a victory against the Danish).

The German soldier's point of view; from your description, is not clear. Maybe he was carrying it as a trophy. Maybe he was carrying it out of respect for the Danish (not every soldier is as hostile towards their enemy; some may even not agree that the Danish are enemies).

I don't think the movie particularly wanted to explore the German soldier's point of view; it was focusing on the Danish soldier's behavior, and how the German soldiers chose to react to this (they did not; and simply marched forward like a beaten dog).

  • Thank you for pointing out that my question needed more context. Edited accordingly.
    – Daze
    Jun 29 '17 at 9:14

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