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3755 THE TWENTIETH CENTURY-THE GREAT WAR.

barrow with what she could find in the

ruins the Germans had made of her home-the last article was a doll without a head-and trundle the cargo away with four

shy, weak little figures clinging to her

skirts, who made as painfully sad a group

as I have ever seen."

The people were starving because the

Huns had despoiled them of their poultry,

livestock, and agricultural products. "We

shall never forget the American relief,"

they said to the war correspondents.

"It saved us. Almost from the beginning

of the German occupation we had nothing else." These

supplies would have

kept them adequately nourished

had they received

all that was landed

at Rotterdam for

their use. But the

Germans broke

their solemn pledges to let this food

pass through for

the benefit of those

for whom it was

intended. They

took much of the

white flour for

themselves, and

adulterated what

remained, so that

what was issued was

a sticky, black substance. In some

places, toward the end, they appropriated

three-fourths of the Committee's ration for

their own use. By thus stealing the

supplies furnished by neutrals and by

confiscating the food produced locally,

the invaders reduced the unhappy people

to a state of semi-starvation. The last

cows had been seized and there was no

milk for the babies.

"Hundreds of villages have been pillaged

and burnt," cabled the correspondent

of the United Press on March 31; "fruit

orchards have been leveled; the room-walls

in houses spared in the retreat have been

clotted and smeared with filth, mirrors

smashed, friezes pick-axed. But most

tragic of all are the human wrecks left

behind-staring at the incoming British

and French troops with eyes made mild

by suffering. Their faces wear blank

expressions, because behind them are

brains dulled by lack of proper sustenance.

The faces of the babies and younger

children are especially pitiful-colorless,

with black circles under the eyes."

At Noyon there was continual robbery

throughout the whole period of occupation.

Many houses were looted of all valuables,

and the interiors were defiled in an unspeakable manner. Safes in private houses

and in banks were blown open, and the

money and securities were stolen. At

Candor soldiers were seen breaking open

tombs and vaults in the hope of finding

valuables. The church was pillaged, and

the silver figures of Christ on the crucifixes

were torn off. At another place the

soldiers broke into the vault of a chapel

and left a gaping hole through which

a coffin and human bones could be seen.

Though the Germans sought to justify this

destruction on the plea of "military necessity," it is clear that the desire for wanton

destruction and perhaps to terrorize their