The First Balkan War
October 8, 1912- May 30, 1913
The Balkan League(,,,) vs. Ottoman Empire ().
The Balkans resented Ottoman influence in Europe at the time and especially since there was insurrection and an apparent weakening of the Empire the Balkan League supported by the Russian Empire commenced the invasion of the Ottoman Empire to force the Ottomans out of Europe. . What happened?
The Turks split their army into two the East and West Armies. The Western army clashed with Serbia and Montenegro throughout Macedonia before finally the Western front culminated at Kumanovo where the Serbians defeated the Ottomans joined the Montenegrins and took Macedonia from the Ottomans. In the East, Bulgarian forces broke through in the crucial battle at Thrace and pushed the Ottomans back all the way to the outskirts of Constantinople. .
After complete failure on all fronts defeat seemed imminent and on December 3, 1912 the Ottomans signed an armistice however this would not last as the Young Turk Revolution coup in January broke the armistice.
The war however only worsened for the Ottomans as the Greeks and Bulgarians continued to batter Ottoman armies and push them further back into Ottoman territory. Eventually the Ottomans lost the will to fight and on May 30, 1913 a peace treaty was signed in London.
. Why did the Ottomans lose?
-Terrible morale amongst the troops, -poor strategic decisions by the Ottoman high command. .
-Splitting the armies into East and West and disposing of traditional officers resulting in many troops having brand new officers
-Political instability and a coup furthered disorganization.
. -Drastically outnumbered by the Balkan League
2,430 men 2,373 men
After the war, the Balkan League members were angry and disputed how to split up new Ottoman lands which led to a Second Balkan War. This also accelerated the collapse of the Ottomans.
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