Brussels, an Occupied City
1915: A zeppelin flying over Brussels. During the First World War, German dirigibles bombed London, Paris, and many other West-European cities, causing severe terror among civilians. They took off namely in Haren, Evere, were the Germans established a gigantic zeppelin hangar. In retaliation, this aerodrome was bombed in 1915 by the English air force. Brussels was at the heart of the war in Europe, which was not only waged in the trenches, but also involved the people at the home front and on occupied territories. In this configuration, which would come to influence the whole 20th century, the situation of the Belgian capital is unique.
In 1914-1918, Brussels was a total war laboratory. With a total population of 700,000, it was the only West European capital to be occupied by a foreign power during the entire conflict, and the largest occupied city of the Great War.