Demark was an aberration in the national history of Nazi Germany. It became a client state after a brief and mostly well-planned and bloodless invasion. German planning put Wehrmacht and commando forces overnight into a dozen places where the Germans could bring the entire country to shutdown. Resistance was light and one could say that the Danes did not go to battle sedulously. Rather, they capitulated almost from the opening shot. Six hours after the Germans invaded, the Danes surrendered and as a result suffered one of the more lenient Nazi occupational operations.
Yet the Danes themselves weren’t entirely without pride. Their spirit of cooperation lasted for three years, but boiling beneath the surface was the notion that the Danish character was anchored in a deep-seated love of democracy and self-determination. The Danes never accepted the depraved and distorted Nazi world-view, and so the state of cooperation was profuse with obfuscation as well. The Dane followed Nazi orders half-heartedly, cooperated with counter intelligence operations and passed information to partisans.
Almost all of the Jews in Germany, Poland, Austria and the Balkan perished in Nazi Germany held territory. In Yugoslavia, only 60 percent of the Jewish population perished. A quarter of French Jews were killed, but Denmark lost about 1% of their Jewish populations. Hannah Arendt commented that the Danes offered a massive passively resistant effort in support of the German occupation. People hid Jews, housed them, lied to the Germans and helped Jews escape the region. All told, less than 500 Jews died in Denmark because of the German occupation.
This is almost a teachable moment. No occupation ever wins out unless it becomes something other than an occupation. You can make people do something they don’t want to do for long.