Liebknecht: Deputy von Campe talked of a weakening of moral backbone that must be combated through inflammatory pro-war propaganda in the schools. He welcomed the decree along these lines enacted in Hannover. Yet the universal first duty of education is to speak the truth, and this truth must be taught in the schools. That means teaching in quite a different manner than that prescribed by Deputy von Campe, the Hannover decree, and the government…
We need to teach the truth about martial law. Teach the truth about the "new orientation." Teach the truth about the interests served by this war and how it came about. Teach the truth not only about how the killing in Sarajevo was an atrocity, as Herr von Campe would have you do, but also the fact that certain circles in Germany and Austria greeted this killing as a gift from God ("Very true!" from the Social Democrats) because it gave them the needed pretext for war– (Loud cries of "Shame." The chairman rings his bell.)
That is the truth! (Prolonged, loud booing. The chairman rings his bell.) That is the truth! It was a pretext! We must tear off the mask–(Renewed loud cries of "Shame." The chairman rings his bell.)
Chairman: Deputy Liebknecht, I must ask you to be silent.
Liebknecht: That is the truth! (Prolonged, loud cries of "Shame" and "Get out!") You do not want to listen. But justice will prevail! (The Conservatives, Free Conservatives, the Centre, and the National Liberals leave the hall.) You are fleeing from the truth. Leave, then. You cannot face the truth! (The chairman rings his bell.)
Chairman: Deputy Dr. Liebknecht, I call you to order because of this outrageous affront to the national feelings of this chamber and of the entire country. I warn you regarding the procedural consequences. If you commit a further breach of order, I will ask the House if it wishes to continue listening to you. Please continue. (Loud commotion. Shouts: "Get out!" Protests from the Social Democrats.)
Liebknecht: Gentlemen, I have only informed you of what stirs me to deep indignation. But I heard it with my own ears; it is the truth….
Our task right now is to tell the working class of every country, "On with the job!" Whether you are in the trenches and inside the country, lower your weapons and turn them against the common foe, who robs you of breath and life! (Loud commotion from the Right. The President rings his bell.)
Chairman: Dr. Liebknecht, these remarks are out of order. I call you to order for the third time, and I will now ask the House if it wishes to continue to listen to your remarks. (Loud applause from the Right and the Centre. Loud commotion. Vigorous protests from the Social Democrats. Deputy Dr. Liebknecht attempts to continue his remarks, but in vain. Members of the Conservative, Free Conservative, Centre, and National Liberal parties return to the hall.)
[Amid renewed uproar, a vote was taken and Liebknecht was compelled to stop speaking.]
I cry every time I read this this speech for some reason.