148 Atrocities of Allied Troops. enough by a long way. Here are two examples, for the accuracy of which I can myself vouch, because they were officially communicated to our division as a warning : 250 English, in German coats and helmets, beckoned a company of German soldiers to come closer so that they could let fly at them at short range. German prisoners were actually used as cover by the English." 1 In many cases there is an obvious system that is followed. Again and again we hear that the English, at the command of their officers, hold up their hands during a German attack, thus giving the understood sign of surrender without further fighting. Then when the German troops advance to meet them, the English suddenly begin to fire upon them. The result of this has been that the salute of captured English officers is no longer returned, as an expression of contempt for this method of warfare. There is here no question of a legitimate and permissible "ruse of war," according to Article 23, of the Rules and Regulations of Warfare by Land, but simply of the "treacherous murder" of an opponent. No more abominable and pusillanimous act can be conceived, and one would be entirely justified, according to international law, in refusing all pardon to the perpetrators of such deeds. B. From the letters of countless eye-witnesses, whose credibility I would myself vouch for, I know that it was a common practice with the Belgians, the Russians and the French in Lothringen, to show the white flag, or raise their arms, only so that a treacherous volley might be poured into the unsuspecting Germans. To what excesses the insolence of the Russians, for instance, will go in the abuse of the flag of the Geneva Con- 1 On the 14th of December 1914, the following was received: On the 4th of December a German sentry who had been appointed to watch a barbed - wire entanglement was found dead, shot through the head, and with his ears cut off. The very next day, at the same place, an officer of the 165th Infantry regiment appeared before the German lines of defence, and asked to be taken with blindfolded eyes before the General in command. The French officer then declared that his division had no part in the perpetration of this cruel deed. The guilty man was to be shot on the same day, December 5th, in expiation of this crime. Bravo !—a little glimmer of light !
Atrocities of Allied Troops. 149 vention, is described by an eye-witness, the well-known war correspondent, Paul Lindenberg—censored by the Great General Staff. According to this the chests and wagons of the Russians, filled to the brim with shells and rifle cartridges, were all marked with the Red Cross! That is as much as to say: "Take care! —Wounded men here!" "This kind of warfare," Lindenberg proceeds, "is quite in harmony with the order found upon a captured officer. This was placed at my disposal by the authorities, and the following is a faithful translation of the text: "Order of the Regimental Head to the 221 Roslawski Regiment stationed at Tapiau. It has been repeatedly proved that the crafty enemy has abused the uses of the white flag. (N.B. This is a distinct misstatement, for there was not even an occasion for misusing the flag). I therefore give orders that his white flags are not to be trusted, nor taken any notice of, and to proceed with the battle in order to conquer him, or even annihilate him. The Commander of the 1st Army, Adjutant- General, General von Rennenkampf. It must also be remarked that the Russians make use of Dum-dum bullets,—furthermore that celluloid strips (cellulose ?) have been found upon many of the prisoners taken to-day;— one detachment of prisoners that went shambling by us consisted of not less than 3800 men. These strips had been given them by their officers so that they might set fire to houses on German territory. Those which we tested burned like tinder!"—thus writes Paul Lindenberg. A military surgeon, writing in the "Post" from the eastern theatre of war, describes an unlawful use of the Red Cross emblem by the Russians. He recounts: "Among the trophies which the army of Rennenkampf has left in our hands, there are some 80 to 100 cars of a hospital train at the station of Wirballen. Only a few of the railway cars show any arrangement for seats. All the others, which were all marked with the Red Cross, were full of infantry and artillery ammunition. In two uncovered cars there were Russian field-guns." In this case we know at least, that the disregard of the flag of the Geneva Convention as well as the white flag was approved