The Invasion Of Montenegro – The End of Gallipoli I THE GREAT WAR – Week 77

The Invasion Of Montenegro – The End of Gallipoli I THE GREAT WAR – Week 77


Last fall the Austrians, Germans, and Bulgarians
overran and conquered Serbia, and now that the dust had settled from that campaign, the
Balkans were kicking into high gear again, as this week, Austria-Hungary invades Montenegro. I’m Indy Neidell; welcome to the Great War. Last week the Russians attacked up and down
the eastern front, but didn’t do much except produce corpses. There was scattered action
in the west, but the Italian and Balkan fronts were quiet, and a British relief force heading
up the Tigris River lost a third of its men against the Ottoman defenders. There was new fighting on the Western Front
this week, as the Germans went on the attack. This week they recovered the trenches they
had lost to the French at Hartmannsweilerkopf New Year’s Eve and captured 20 officers,
and on the 9th German troops under General von Einem attacked on a five-mile front east
of Tahure after an artillery barrage. The French managed to stop the offensive, but
at two points the Germans reached the French front lines. This was actually a three-day
battle, and the Germans took several hundred meters of trenches, 423 prisoners and, 8 machine
guns. At Massiges, after an artillery barrage of
400,000 shells, the Germans charged 40,000 strong on the 10th, but the French machine
guns tore huge holes in the attackers and they were forced back. Few even made it as
far as the barbed wire. This sounds pretty serious, but by the 13th, all of this German
activity had pretty much been called off. Something that was called off weeks ago, but
was still not entirely finished, was Gallipoli. But this week, on January 8th, the total evacuation
of the British forces at Gallipoli was complete. Anzac and Suvla Bay had been evacuated in
December, but there were still tens of thousands of men at Cape Helles and it was a difficult
situation. The route to the beach had to be marked off carefully and then all other avenues
of advance for the Turks blocked with barbed wire. This had to be done under the ever-increasing
Turkish artillery, and the ever-increasing suspicions by the Turks as to what was going
on. The Turks even went over the top on January 7th, but were pushed back by British naval
support hammering their flanks. At that time there were only 19,000 men left and only 63
guns at Cape Helles. If the Turks had broken through it could have been a true massacre. In the last 11 days, 35,628 troops were removed.
They left behind them booby traps, land mines, and even rifles that operated by clockwork;
water would drip through a tin of sand and when that tin dropped it would set off the
trigger and fire the gun. The relief of the men was palpable, and one Sergeant Mannion,
one of the last to leave, had this to say, “When we were a mile out from the beach,
we were all ordered to go below. At this moment a big magazine on shore was blown up, and
we could hear the pieces of scrap-iron falling on the roof of the lighter. The sea was very
rough and our lighter pitched and tossed like a cork on the waves. We were all very seasick.
There was a rumor that we had broken adrift, and the sailors confirmed this. Our cable
had parted and we were drifting, in a rough sea, off a hostile shore. But nobody seemed
to worry much. We had got safely off Gallipoli, a thing which none of us had expected.”
(Gilbert) The evacuation was carried off brilliantly,
there’s no doubt about that, but while it was a great success, it was a success that
grew out of defeat and there were many cynics about it. Peter Hart quotes Douglas Jerrold,
in The Great War, with having this to say: “The evacuation, the world has repeatedly
been informed, was a very skillful operation. The phrase is just stupid. It does not require
intelligence… to withdraw troops quietly by night instead of noisily by day, or to
withdraw them gradually instead of all at once. Or to hold the front line to the last
and so conceal your intentions from the enemy. There were no casualties because the Turks
did not attack… If the Turks had chanced to launch a powerful attack on the last day
no staff work could have prevented the loss of most of the few troops left behind there.
But the risk… was negligible. It was, as everyone has said, a miracle of organization.
We are good at that sort of thing. When we surrender the last defenses of our Empire,
we may be certain that the protocols, like the graves, will be in perfect order.” In addition to the men, there were 3,689 horses
and mules to be transported, though 508 were shot, and 1,590 vehicles abandoned (numbers
from Gilbert). For the Allies, the campaign was a huge drain on manpower that could’ve,
should’ve been used elsewhere. 410,000 men from the British Empire participated, with
79,000 more from France and its North African colonies. The British Imperial forces lost
205,000 men, half their total; 115,000 killed, wounded, or missing, and 90,000 evacuated
sick (Hart). Really, that’s how bad the disease was there. French losses were proportionally
higher- 47,000; 27.000 killed, wounded, or missing, and 20,000 evacuated sick. The evacuation of Gallipoli also meant that
the Turks could now transfer nearly 40,000 troops to Mesopotamia, where the British were
under siege at Kut Al-Amara. But the relief force under Fenton Aylmer was
on the move up the Tigris River, even after having a third of its men killed or wounded
last week. They saw more action this week, although on a smaller scale, at the Battle
of the Wadi on the 13th. 200 British and Indian troops were killed and another 1,400 wounded.
While I guess you could technically call it a victory for the British, since they did
succeed in taking the Wadi River area, they took three times the casualties of the Ottoman
defenders, and theirs were not replaceable so by most measures it was a win for the Ottomans
over the invading forces. Meanwhile back in Europe, a brand new invasion
was taking place. After the events of the previous months, a
period of calm had seemed to settle over the Balkans, with one real exception- Montenegro.
Although you didn’t hear much about it, the Montenegrin army had fought against the
Austrians. It now numbered fewer than 20,000 men and was desperately short of munitions
and food, but the allies couldn’t really offer them any relief. There was no real seaport
and the terrain was mountainous and difficult. Now, during the invasion of Serbia in the
fall, Montenegrin forces had given Serbia their full support and had faced the Austrians,
even holding a slice of Bosnia for a little while. The Austrians had been content then
to just hold back the Montenegrins, since an invasion into the mountainous country would
be tricky, but as Serbia fell, the Austrians were strongly reinforced with men and big
guns. On January 6, 1916, there was a series of
violent Austrian attacks on the Rivers Tara, Lim, and Ibar while Austrian warships bombarded
mount Lovcen. On January 8th, over 50,000 Austro-Hungarian Imperial troops invaded Montenegro
with a 500-gun barrage, and both air and sea support. Mount Lovcen was stormed and taken
on the 10th and it was just a matter of time before Cetinje, the capital, fell. It was
occupied at the end of the week as more and more Austrian forces surged into Montenegro. And it wasn’t just tiny Montenegro that
was in chaos this week. Giant Russia was also in disarray. On the Black Sea, 10,000 Russian workers went
on strike at the naval base at Nikolaev, the strike would spread to Petrograd, where next
week 45,000 dock workers walked off their jobs. Russia was also fighting, still pretty
continuously in Bukovina and Galicia, but also launching an offensive in Anatolia, occupying
Arkhava on the Black Sea on the 14th. And that was the week, the British losing
irreplaceable men in the Middle East, the Germans trying in the west, strikes in Russia,
and the final exit from Gallipoli. There are 33 Commonwealth cemeteries at Gallipoli
on the peninsula, with graves for the bodies that were found with inscriptions on them
covering all spectrums of human emotion. Here are two I got from Martin Gilbert. “Brother Bill a sniping fell:
We love him still, We always will.” And one that I think sums up the thoughts
of every parent of every dead soldier from every warring nation: “What harm did he do thee, O Lord?” Albeit Galipolli’s failure, it was the birth
hour of Australian and New Zealand national consciousness. If you want to find out more
about the famous ANZACs, check out our special episode right here. Our Patreon supporter of the week is Burkay
Ozturk. Thanks to Burkay’s and your support we were able to improve our show a lot and
if you want to help us further, check out our Patreon page. You can also support us by buying our official
merch of course. And don’t forget to subscribe. See you next week.

100 thoughts on “The Invasion Of Montenegro – The End of Gallipoli I THE GREAT WAR – Week 77

  1. +TheGreatWar for real though, which member of Mumford and sons did Indy have to pay off to get that sweet vest?

  2. The Lord did not kill that man, men did. Men who formed a system that resulted in extreme warfare, men who guiled him into joining the war, men who sent him off into a suicidal mission for no purpose, and men who shot him because of other men.

  3. Is "Black Mountain" the translation of "Montenegro"? Or is there some other etymology for the name? King Monte (who was black)?
    Another fine, fine episode. Can't watch "Angel and Snake" too many times,; it causes the gravitas of the real production to seem on the verge of comedy now.

    ….should have been "Nike and Snake".

  4. Erich Rudorffer the 7th most successful fighter pilot in history and recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves is still alive!For the love of god,please do an interview with him before he's gone forever!He probably has some fascinating stories to tell.

  5. hey Indy, firstly, hello from the U.S. version of the north pole, Wisconsin

    second, when you start grtting to U.S. in WW1, i highly recommend you come and look at the Wisconsin Historicle archives, which is the second largest holder of U.S. and Canadian history, also could you do an episode on the US 32nd division, that would be awesome

    keep doing what your doing and i almost forgot, keep your head down and your rifle clean.

  6. The use of periods verses commas, makes those numbers look much smaller but guess numeric separators are different else ware in the world

  7. now that the siege of kut is slowly drifting towards its end (one way or the other; no spoilers) are you going to make an episode about the indian soldiers on the mesopotamian front? or the role of islam and jihad in the ottoman theatre?

  8. What is going on this year (1916) in the German protectorate of  Kamerun Modern Cameroon? the German land Fell in 1916 but what did it do in WW1 please answer in Out of the Trenches. thank you the show is Great!!!

  9. thank you for the post; chastisement for our sins has a human cost, may we repent of our wicked ways.
    May our Lord Jesus Christ guard and guide your steps; in the name of the Father the Son and the Holy Spirit, amen.

  10. Finally caught up! This is such a great channel! Before watching these videos, I'd known only very little about this war, and I thank you for fixing that!

  11. A question for out of the trenches. What did the Georgians (the ones in the Russian empire, not the state) do in world war one? They would have a big impact since the caucasian front with the ottomans was practically at their doorstep.

  12. Oh mothers wipe your tears
    Your sons will rest a million years
    Found their peace at last
    as foe turned to friend
    and forgive
    And they knew they would die!

    GALLIPOLI!
    Left their letters in the sand!
    Such waste of life!
    GALLIPOLI!
    Dreams of freedom turned to dust!

    ~ Cliffs of Gallipoli – Sabaton

  13. Hold up, how could you not mention the self firing SMLE rifle when the ANZACs were evacuated (or did i miss it?)? This was an Australian invention, by Lance Corporal Scurry and first used in the evacuation of the ANZACs.

  14. I am just wondering what the cheese box on you shelf has/had in it. My dad enjoys you series very much and has been following your show since early 1914 and is always watching your videos on Thursdays. I am only 11 and don't really follow the war but I encourage you to keep filming videos.
    -lillah

    P.s I do like the specials on the female spies.

  15. no offense to anyone, but is there any emperors or leaders whom are intelligent enough to ask about why this war is even happening and why they must send thousands of to die/

  16. Excellent video and thank you once more for sharing your knowledge. One question , did you ever played a mod for Napoleon TW called Great War , that is about 1st WW ? You should is a great mod ,tanks,air plains ,a very good one.

  17. Dear Indy,
    I really like your show but I think you should talk a bit more about the fightings which the Serbs did. Also I believe that what you said in the earlier episodes that Franz Ferdinant was the only person who could have actually helped the Serbs living in the Austro-Hungarian empire is not true. Bear in mind the major religion in the empire was Catholicism and the Serbs being Eastern Orthodox, were frequentlly targeted. Franz Ferdinand was the chief advocate of the idea to convert the Serbs into Catholicism and to asimilate them into other slavic nations living within the empire.
    P.S. keep on the good work!

  18. I am a Serb and I know my history, but what our Serbian brothers from Montenegro and commander of Montenegrin Sandžak army did for us on the orthodox Christmas of 6-7th of January 1916. was a feat for all encyclopedias and books on war. They covered our retreat and defeated Austro-Hungarian enemy superior in manpower and equipment at the most dramatic battle of Mojkovac. Austrians had 20.000. men, 45 guns and dozens of machine guns – Montenegrin army had 6.500. men armed with old obsolete 19th century rifles, 25 guns and only 8 machine guns. Austrian general in the final moments of battle had drawn out his sword and personally led last Austrian attack. And Montenegrin army endured everything Austrians had thrown against it, and constantly counterattacked, especially after the loss of Bojna njiva, which was the focal position of the front. Heroic Rovac and last reserve of division – brave Drobnjak battalion in counterattacks managed to break the Austrians and to recapture the Bojna njiva. Finally Austro-Hungarians were defeated and Serbian army's retreat was safe. After that, although spirit for fighting was still high, Montenegrin ruler king Nikola betrayed his army and forced it to capitulate. That is considered among all proud Montenegrins as cowardly move on behalf of king. Montenegrin commanders and soldiers felt that they had been betrayed.

  19. Were smoke shells used during this war? I am not an expert on warfare, and especially not the first world war, but would it not make sense to shell a sector of enemy trenches with smoke to allow allied infantry to close in? I know that it would obscure the sight of your own spotters and men, but considering how staggering the cost of head on assaults were, would it not be a more… "reasonable" meatgrinder by pouring infantry into close combat instead of having them mowed down in no-mans-land?

  20. Out of the Trenches Question:
    How and when did the Turks realize that Galipoli was abandoned? And how many were lost by the traps and guns that were left behind?

    Also, big compliment to Andy and all the rest of the crew! Awesome channel!!

  21. Ohannes Pasha Kouyoumdjian (of Armenian origin btw), the last Ottoman civil governor of the Autonomous Province of Lebanon expressed from Rome in 1921 his own point of view about the Campaign. He said : "A landing in Syria, a country who sympathizes for their cause, where Djemal Pasha had only 20 thousands troops to oppose them, would have been less costly for the forces of the Entente than the bloody campaign of the Dardanelles in 1915. All the Turkish mobilization would have been paralyzed. The lives of one hundred thousand soldiers of England and France would have been spared. The monstrous massacres that flooded the Asian part of Turkey with blood would have been stopped. "Sadly, why don't they come ?" This question that all the Arab conscripts [in the Ottoman's 4th Army of Djemal Pasha] and many peoples of the Levant kept anxiously asking in 1915, will still be asked in front of History". (translated by me from French from the book "Le Liban, à la veille et au début de la guerre, mémoires d'un gouverneur 1913-1915, page 155)

  22. Indy, a century ago you'd be arrested as a defeatist traitor. Why with your concern about casualties and pointing out the mistakes that caused them you'd be lucky to escape the firing squad. One good thing that came out of tragedy of WW1 was the freedom to question leaders. Was it worth the cost? My opinion is no, but then I've concluded that WW1 was fought to rid Europe of the excess males left over from the Agricultural age, cement the industrialists in power and prevent the looming communist revolutions.
    Worked everywhere but Russia and when they revolted there, why what a surprise, the war ended and they invaded Russia.

  23. Oh, and on the subject at hand, there is a very good reason the Turks didn't rush the defenses at Gallipoli, expediency. Why attack into a naval barrage to take ground from the enemy that they are in the process of abandoning?

  24. Greetings Indie! Do you think in the future you might do some "location filming?" It would be very interesting to see what some of the battlefields look like today.
    Love the Channel.
    Love the concept.
    You guys are great!

  25. Like Indy said many times word IF…if just ignorant British have sent those Galipoli troops in Serbia,i know many would say but Greece was neutral,but whata heck…they didn't care for this neutrality shortly after and put troops anyways in Greece,if they just did that after glorious victory of Allies(Serbia) at Kolubara . Austro-Hungarian empire was on the edge of collapse,Germany was struggling at the moment,Bulgaria was way out of the picture…if,if,if…Serbian exodus would be preserved from happening…war would be much shorter I'm pretty sure…what do you think Indy if just this one "if" would have had happened?

  26. And by the way Indy you never used word victory at Kolubara battle, as i noticed you used word repelling witch i found quiet unsuitable for this situation,when sucha "under down",how u like to call Serbia in many cases,was way more successful than any other nation at the beginning of the war and time will tell thought out of almost all war. So i think victory is the word,best of luck with your further work!

  27. You did episode about Milunka Savic, but would you do some episode about greatest Serbian officers, those who held rank of vojvoda?…

  28. In another World War 1 documentary series, I think on the military channel they spoke of archaeological finds at Gallipoli, found by accident. I would like to know what they were.

  29. Hey super show! Don't make me out to be a dick but please make an effort at differentiating dead from sick and wounded when listing casualties. Allies lost 57,000 dead with Ottomans loosing almost the exact same to the man (57,000). Confused statistics take away from the awe and horror, as do mispronunciation of many english vocabulary words. While I'm at it, some cool detailed maps would be a huge plus. These are the simple steps missing to take the show from great to perfect. Expect a Patreon contribution to finance your pronunciation efforts and to alleviate my guilt of being an ass :)))

  30. the Newfoundland Regiment, which had been sent to Suvla Bay in September, were chosen to be the rearguard for the evacuation and were the last troops to be removed from Suvla.

  31. One more thing ,say something about mr.Nikola Tesla who sad once when he heard from Serbian oficer or refuger durring his liveing in USA about Serbian sacrfices durring the retreat acros Albania :,,We should be proud because we are Serbs .'' in original it is like this ,,Trebamo se ponositi sto smo Srbi.'' ( if you know how to read ,,Latin Rome language'' , ( letter by letter – you can ' t read it incorect) .I also want to say that the conversation (Tesla and that folk) happend in 1916.

  32. In the specials, mentions have been made of even in the same army ammo wasn't always compatible. How were captured guns used, without ammo necessarily being compatible?

  33. intetesting you do not have even one title with any of Serbian victories in ww1. Of course you didn't mention nither British reluctance to evacuate Serbian army from Albanian coast, nor the fact that Serbian army practically ended ww1 by defeating Bulgaria and Austria on Balkan front in 1918.

  34. Russia is ridiculous. Why would anyone ever think that such a huge percentage of our habitable space and population should be controlled by so few?… that the lives and well-being of countless individuals should be determined by which acre of land they were spawned into? Nationalism is a disease. No person of sound mind would ever think so many millions should bend themselves to the will of a handful of men unless they were indoctrinated into a masturbatory collectivist fantasy. I guess you could apply that to any industrial nation to be fair. This is infantilism; the attachment of juvenile feelings of parental love to a pattern of cloth designed by oligarchs who would gladly sacrifice your life and your family's lives to avoid losing their positions of authority.

  35. Horses and mules are that valuable that they had to kill them so that the enemy didin't get their hands on them? 500 of them!? That's disgusting

  36. Battle of Mojkovac: much of the fighting was done hand-to-hand with fixed bayonets and knives, in knee-deep snow.

  37. with the distinguishment made between wounded and killed, I wonder how high the mortality rate was for the wounded in this war.

  38. Almost half a MILLION men on the Entente side fault at Gallipoli!?!?!?!?!
    What the actual f***! They probably could have saved Serbia with that army instead or really have used them any where else.

  39. why dont u mention what the austrians did when they invaded us,destroying chuchres and other holy buildings,killing inocent citizens

  40. I wish you could empathize with the Turkish casualties and losses in Gallipoli. Yet you do not even give the numbers… Biased as always Indy…

  41. You were all that we had
    Your mummy and me
    When you marched to the drum
    You were proud as could be

    And it killed your poor ma
    And it slowly killed me
    When you were blown to kingdom come
    On the shores of Gallipoli

  42. Im an Proud Montenegrin i Love my Homeland and my People The Montenegrins!
    I and my whole Family belong To Heroic- Tribe Drobnjak/Uskok! Our House is only 30 km far away from Mojkovac, WE are from Šavnik The Area from The Tribe Drobnjak/ Uskok and Im proud of IT To belong to The our Heroic- Tribe!!!

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