Karl Liebknecht
The Future Belongs to the People

Liebknecht's Visit to Belgium

ON September 16th, 1914, Liebknecht went to Belgium to inform himself about the situation, and here is what Camille Huysmans, the secretary of the International Socialist Bureau, writes about Liebknecht's visit to Belgium:

To P. Renaudel, Editor of L'Humanité.

"MY DEAR RENAUDEL, – Liebknecht came to Belgium on September 16th, 1914. He met several friends, and he came to see me at Brussels, at the Maison du Peuple, in the afternoon. I asked him into my office and we had a conversation which lasted more than two hours. I took him to dinner at a restaurant in the town, and we again talked at length. I invited other friends to meet him, among them our comrade Vandersmirsen. The next morning we went out in two motor cars. We passed through several districts. We tried to see Louvain, but the military authorities would not allow us to do so.

"At Tirlemont, through the mistake of an officer, we were caught in some shrapnel fire, and we had to remain through the engagement. I showed Liebknecht what actually took place. He questioned the Belgians. He talked with the German soldiers. He was thus able to form his own opinion on the spot.

"To sum up: Liebknecht, when he came, knew nothing of what had happened in Belgium. He went away convinced that the Belgians had not been sold to Great Britain, that they had not organized bands of francs-tireurs, that they had not assassinated the German wounded, and that the German executions in Belgium were unjustifiable.

"He came to Belgium honorably and honestly to gain information. Anything else is calumny. Those Belgians who regarded the reception by me of a German as an act of treason grasped him effusively by the hand when they learned that he came to find out and to speak the truth.


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