INTRODUCTIONI left burning Visé deeply impressed by the savage scenes I had witnessed: men turned into beasts by drink, passion, and anger, doing all manner of wrong to the wretched inhabitants; but the impression became deeper by the great contrast: the perfect, charitable devotion of a virtuous priest, a courageous lady, and ever kind and commiserate Sisters. Never have I experienced so many emotions in one day as at Visé. 离开 But the inhabitants were treated even then in a most vexatious manner, and on August 14th (the destruction came about on the 16th) I wrote to De Tijd (No. 20457):— With a powerful voice, in order to drown the239 roar of the guns, a German parson delivered the funeral oration, in which he spoke of the heroic conduct of the fallen men, who had sacrificed their lives for God, Kaiser, and Fatherland, and who, by God's inscrutable decree, were not destined to witness the final victory of the powerful German armies. The marines put their instruments to their mouths and played a slow funeral march. It was really very touching, and all the spectators came under the impression. On August 12th I came for the first time to Tongres. They had been there only a few days, and only near the town-hall did I see a goodly number of the garrison. Many wounded were brought there, and carried in through the door under the outside stairway. They came from Haelen, where a battle was being fought that afternoon and for which they had left in the morning. For the attack on the entrenched Belgians they had used cavalry exclusively, who were simply mowed down by the murderous fire from the hidden mitrailleuses and the infantry fire from the trenches. The Germans suffered a great reverse, and were deeply embittered.
"It is highly deplorable when officers or non-commissioned officers set houses on fire without the permission or order of the commanding, or, as the case may be, the senior officer, or when by their attitude they encourage the rank and file to burn and plunder. 黑暗 CHAPTER IX The next day I got to The Netherlands with my small protégée, after a tiring walk from Herstal to Eysden, where we could take the train to Maastricht. Here the father of the little girl came to meet his daughter, and took her to Amsterdam, to her "Mummy," of whom she had been speaking during the whole journey with so much longing. "ENOUGH DESTROYED, ENOUGH DISTRESSED!
"I acquaint the inhabitants of Liège of this, that they may understand what fate threatens them if they should assume a similar attitude. 然敢 126 I asked him how things were farther on along the Meuse, but he knew nothing. He was stationed here, he said, and was going to stay as long as possible. As soon as the Germans arrived, most people fled, and those who had stayed on were no longer allowed to leave. So he lacked all information, and only understood that fierce fighting was going on, as was confirmed by the incessant thunder of the20 guns. Fort Pontisse was, moreover, not so very far away, and frequently we could distinctly tell, by their whistling sound, in which direction the shells flew. 126
It is evident from the "Report on the Violations of International Law in Belgium" that the Germans themselves admit that they were in the wrong with regard to the atrocities which were committed here. The following order of the day proves it: 充满 Netherland soldiers and inhabitants of the village bustled about along the opposite river-bank. I shouted as loudly as possible; and when at last I succeeded in drawing their attention, I made them understand that I wanted to be pulled across in the little boat, which in ordinary times served as a ferry. A short consultation took place now on the opposite side, after which a soldier, who clearly possessed a strong voice, came as near as possible to the waterside and, making a trumpet of his two hands, roared: And he went on to say that he desired especially, most fervently the return of the fled population. "I don't know yet. The things I see ... and ... of course that cannot do harm to the German army."”
As he said this the commander put his hand roughly on the shoulder of the trembling man, who again said in French: 来将 The people had been in deadly terror, and women and old men, fearing that they would be killed, had fallen on their knees beseeching the soldiers to spare them. At present many women and old men,69 and even strong men, were laid up with violent feverish attacks of nerves. A trip from Brussels to the scene of the fight convinced me still more. I passed some time with the artillery which had already silenced Waelhem, and was now used against the other defences. The sight of such an action was less interesting than one might think, as I could not get to the places where the infantry were storming. Only the thunder of all these guns overwhelmed and gave me an idea of the terror that was created. I have been able to assist a good many of these unfortunate people by bandaging the wounds with the dressing they gave me, or getting some water for them from some house in the neighbourhood; and one, who had fallen down exhausted by pain, I carried into a house.”