Belgium, Sunday, 2nd August
Brussels Below is told by Berlin to open the sealed document he received on Wednesday and deliver the note inside to the Belgian government at 7.00 P.M. The note claims the French are about to attack Germany through Belgium and the Germans must be allowed to come through Belgium to repel this attack.
He is to give the impression to the Belgian government that he received the note just that afternoon. The Belgian reply is to be in Berlin by 1.00 P.M. the next day, Monday, 3 August. [More]
7.00 P.M. Below arrives at Davignon's office and hands him the note. Both men are upset and Davignon grows angry. He does not believe the German claim that France is about to attack. Davignon says the note will be dealt with immediately and Below leaves.
Late evening King Albert calls a Crown Council with his ministers. It goes on through the night. There is heated argument but not on whether or not to accept the German ultimatum. They are all agreed it should be rejected. The argument is over how best to resist the Germans. Should they fight near the border or withdraw into the interior of Belgium.
They decide to immediately ask the Guaranteeing Powers for diplomatic support but not to ask for military support until an invasion begins.