Page:EB1922 - Volume 31.djvu/42

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Is. being reserved for later arbitration. It was necessary, if the attack on Turkey were to be made, that it should take place at once so as not to leave time for preparation. On Oct. 8 Monte- negro declared war; on the I3th the three other allied states presented an ultimatum demanding the immediate grant of autonomy to Macedonia; on the i4th the population of Crete declared themselves independent of Turkey, and formally joined Greece ; and on the 1 7th the declaration of war was sent.

These events seem to have been carried out without the privity of any of the Powers except Russia, and were equally unwelcome to all to the Entente as much as to the Triple Alliance. At the last moment a hasty and ill-advised scheme was put forward by the joint action of Austria and France for localizing, if not pre- venting, the impending hostilities; the united Great Powers of Europe declared that in the event of hostilities they would not permit any alteration of the territorial status. At least German opinion seems to have anticipated rapid success for the Turks, a success which would have been welcome to them; they were speedily disappointed and disillusioned. Before the end of the month the Turkish army had been defeated and routed by the Bulgarians in the two great battles of Kirk-Kilisse and Lule- Burgas; the Serbians had overrun the whole of Macedonia, the Turkish force opposed to them fleeing in panic and disorder. The Greeks, advancing from the south, occupied southern Albania and also quickly made their way to Salonika. Within a month the Turkish rule in the Balkans had come to an end; there was left to them only Constantinople and parts of Thrace. The Bulgarians advanced rapidly towards the capital; it was for the moment their dream that it would be a Bulgarian army which would rescue San Sofia from the Moslems, and Ferdinand hoped that the day was approaching when he would ride as a con- queror into the streets of Constantinople. They were disap- pointed. In a series of battles, Nov. 17-22, the Bulgarian assault on the lines of Chatalja failed; cholera made its appear- ance in the army and on Dec. 3 an armistice was concluded.

It remained for Europe to determine its attitude towards these unexpected events. The danger was extreme that the Balkan might become a European war.

The Austrian Government was determined to put a barrier to Serbian ambition. The arrangements with Bulgaria were based on the assumption that Serbia should gain her reward by the annexation of the northern part of Albania and should thereby obtain access to the Adriatic. This Austria would not permit. She did not wish to see a Slavonic State having access to a sea which she looked upon as her own. In this matter she could depend upon Italian support. Austrian troops were mobilized; garrisons in Herzegovina were placed upon a war footing, and the situation was aggravated by numerous personal incidents, as for instance by stories which were put about that the Serbians had imprisoned and ill-treated an Austrian consul. War between Austria and Serbia was imminent, but if it broke out Serbia would be supported by Russia, and in answer to Austrian military preparations, Russian troops on the south-western frontier were placed on a war footing. A war between Austria and Russia would, in consequence of the complicated system of alliances, inevitably bring in Germany and France, and thereby bring about the great struggle which everyone wished to avoid. The danger was averted by France, Great Britain and Germany, who worked together to bring about conciliation. It had been ar- ranged that, side by side with the peace negotiations which were taking place in St. James's Palace, the ambassadors of the Great Powers in London should sit in conference under the presidency of Sir Edward Grey. It was agreed that France and Great Britain should give their support to Austria, and that Albania should be set up as an independent state. This removed the essential point of controversy, and in February the Austrian Emperor sent Prince Hohenlohe on a special mission with a letter to the Tsar. It was agreed that the two Powers should de- mobilize, and from this time the extreme friction began to diminish. But the refusal of Serbian access to the Adriatic was to have unexpected results. It cut away the basis on which the division of the spoil had been arranged between the Balkan

States. The Serbian Government therefore demanded a larger portion of Macedonia than had been originally assigned to her. They based this claim also on the point that Bulgaria had not provided her due share of forces to fight in the western area, while Serbia had contributed more than she was bound in the struggle for Adrianople. Under these circumstances an appeal to the Tsar to arbitrate was enjoined. But before he had even received the appeal, a catastrophe took place. The old animosity against Bulgaria, which had been for so many hundreds of years tradi- tional among the Greeks and Serbians, was again growing. The armies were in Macedonia still in closely adjacent quarters. The Bulgarian Government, under what influence we do not know, determined on a sudden blow, and on June 29 an attack in form was delivered by the Bulgarians against the Serbian forces. Immediately afterwards the Greeks in Salonika attacked the Bulgarians. This new fratricidal war had scarcely begun when two new champions entered the field. The Turks denounced the armistice and a fortnight later retook Adrianople. On July 18 Rumania, with a fresh army, entered the field, declared war on Bulgaria, and occupied the Dobruja. Before this great superior- ity of force the Bulgarians, who had lost so heavily in the war the dead alone were 30,000 had no course open but to capitulate. On the demand of Rumania a conference was summoned to Bucharest, which on July 30 arranged an armistice, and on Aug. n the Peace of Bucharest was signed. By this Bulgaria had to surrender to Serbia the whole of Macedonia, to Greece a large part of the northern shore of the Aegean, while to Turkey she had to restore Adrianople and to Rumania to surrender the Dobruja. The situation left by the Treaty of Bucharest was very precarious. It was obvious that Bulgaria would not willingly acquiesce in the loss of territory and prestige. The mutual animosity between Serbia and Austria continued, and the Prince of Wied did not show himself capable of coping with the very serious difficulties in Albania. There were acute differences between Turkey and Greece, and the renewal of war seemed imminent. But these mere local complications could doubtless have been overcome so long as no one of the Great Powers intervened; separate action by any one of them must almost inevitably bring about the great trial of strength between the rival alliances. It was the object of every responsible statesman to prevent this arising. The immediate danger arose from Austria and Russia. Austrian policy was inclined towards Bulgaria and desired to see the Treaty of Bucharest overthrown. In the summer of 1913 they proposed an immediate attack on Serbia; in this they did not have the support of Berlin. The German Government was clearly dissatisfied with the Austrian handling of the Serbian difficulty, and also with the unneccesary harshness with which the Hungarians treated the Rumans. They rightly saw that an amelioration of the position must be found in an internal reform of the Dual Monarchy. On the other hand, German ambitions were becoming a serious danger. Count Wangenheim, who had succeeded Marschall von Bieberstein as ambassador to the Porte, was with great assurance strengthening the German control at Constantinople. This was a development which Russia could not regard with equanimity. A crisis was reached during the winter, when Gen. Liman von Sanders was not only appointed to reorganize the Turkish army, but was given actual control over the army corps stationed in Constanti- nople. This led to a strong protest from Russia, and was followed by very violent press polemics between Germany and Russia. It is clear that Russia was becoming impatient. It looked as though Germany, with the conclusion of the Bagdad agreement, and in other ways, would gain complete control over Turkey, military, political and economic. This, if achieved, would be a formidable impediment to the ultimate realization of what had for so long been the permanent object of Russian policy not only the opening of the Straits but the control of Constantinople. In February, as we now know, the situation was reviewed; it was agreed that these hopes could only be achieved as the result of a European war, and that'it was necessary to prepare the scheme for landing troops on the Bosporus if the contingency arose. Rus- sia did not take her allies into her confidence. The most serious