Extract from a proclamation of General von Buelow, placarded at Liege, Aug. 22, 1914:
The inhabitants of the city of Andenne, after having protested their peaceful intentions, were guilty of a treacherous surprise upon our troops. It was with my consent that the General in Chief set fire to the whole locality, and that about one hundred persons were shot.
(The Belgian report controverts the accusation against the inhabitants of Andenne of having taken hostile measures against the German troops, and adds: “As a matter of fact, more than two hundred persons were shot”—almost everything was ravaged. For a distance of at least three leagues the houses were destroyed by fire.)
Extract from a proclamation of Major Dieckmann, placarded at Grivegnee, Sept. 8, 1914:
Any one not responding
instantly to the command “raise your
arms” is subject to the penalty of death.
Extract from proclamation of Marshal Baron von der Goltz, placarded at Brussels, Oct. 5, 1914:
Hereafter the localities nearest the place where similar acts (destruction of railways or telegraphic lines) were done—whether or not they were accomplices in the act—will be punished without mercy. To this end hostages have been taken from all the localities adjacent to railways menaced by similar attacks, and upon the first attempt to destroy the railways, telegraphic or telephone lines, they will at once be shot.
I copy from the first page of an unsigned notebook, (Fig. 5:)
Langeviller, Aug. 22.—Village
destroyed by the Eleventh
Battalion of Pioneers. Three women hanged to trees; the first
dead I have seen.
Who can these three women be?—criminals undoubtedly—guilty of having fired upon German troops, unless, indeed, they may have been “in communication by telephone” with the enemy; and the Eleventh Pioneers unquestionably meted out to them just punishment. But, at all events, they expiated their guilt, and the Eleventh Pioneers has passed on. The crime these women committed is unknown to the troops which are to follow. Among these new troops will there be found no chief, no Christian, to order the ropes cut and allow these dangling bodies to rest on the earth?
[Illustration: Figure 5.]
No, the regiment passes under the gibbets and their flags brush against the hanging corpses; they pass on, Colonel and officers—gentlemen all—Kulturtraeger. And they do this knowingly; these corpses must hang there as an example, not for the other women of the village, for these doubtless already understand, but as an example to the regiment and to the other regiments that will follow, and who must be attuned to war, who must be taught their stern duty to kill women when occasion offers. The teaching will be effective, unquestionably. Shall we look for proof of it? The young soldier, who tells us above that these corpses were the first dead he had ever seen, adds a week later, on the tenth and last page of his notebook, the following, (Fig. 6:)