Talk:Battle of Kresna Gorge

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Untitled[edit]

The fact that the greek army was in the edge of annihilation is the bulgarian POV. In greek histroiography the battle of Kresna is seen as a victory, during which all bulgarian attacks were repulsed, with the greek army eventually dominating the battlefield. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Xristar (talkcontribs) 23:01, 12 March 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for your remark, I pasted it into the article. If you have references for it, or additional information, please add it! Preslav (talk) 18:06, 21 March 2008 (UTC)

Why is it that the Bulgarians erase text that present an alternative point of view? Add your own text, don't just be a Mongol and erase other people's text. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 63.209.227.248 (talk) 23:52, 24 May 2009 (UTC)

Cuffs do not match the collar[edit]

Dates do not match up. According to text in the article, this battle " ... went for ten days and took place between the 29th July and the 7th August 1913." Then, according to the Campaign Box, this battle was fought "8 July–18 July 1913." Does anyone know what is correct? Mkpumphrey (talk) 18:42, 24 October 2008 (UTC)

Most of the confusion in dates arises from the fact that the Balkan countries still used the Julian Calendar back then, so there is a difference of 13 days. By that reckoning, the battle began on the 10th, when the Greek army entered Kresna Gorge, and the armistice was signed on the 18th of July. Seehere for details & New Style reckoning. Cheers, Constantine 19:39, 24 October 2008 (UTC)

I would like to add the following quotation at the end of the article: According to W.H. Crawfurd Price, in his book: “The Balkan Cockpit: The Political and Military Story of the Balkan Wars in Macedonia,” T. Werner Laurie Ltd., London, 1914. page 340, It would appear that the signature of the armistice at Bukarest saved the Bulgars from a decisive defeat at Kresna.

The history from Price is corroborated by Cassavetti, D. J., in “HELLAS AND THE BALKAN WARS”, New York: DODD, MEAD and COMPANY (1914). page 331:

The right wing(Of the Greek Army), consisting of the 1st, 6th and 7th Divisions, under General Manusojannakis, continued its advance along the east of the Strymon Pass, with its front extending as far east at Kremen, which was occupied by the 7th Division on July 23rd. This division advanced to Banska and Mehomia (Razlog) on July 24th and 25th, and then moved in a more westerly direction in order to keep in touch with the 6th Division, which was perched on the inaccessible crags to the of the Strymon (Struma) and to the north of Gradevo. The 6th Division pushed wit way northward as far as 1378-Metre Hill on the Arisvanitsa range, which became the scene of most sanguinary combats, being captured and recaptured on several occasions. At one moment the opposing forces, their ammunition having com to an end, hurled stones at one another across a ravine. At that time the 1st Division was on the road north of Uranovo, and the 5th Division was acting as a reserve in the Kresna Pass. The Bulgarians facing the Greek center were defated, and were forced to retire to the north of Djumaia (Blagoevgrad) on July 23rd and 24th. On July 25th the 6th Division was pushing forward in pursuit of some 4,000 Bulgarians, who were retreating before it. On that day, therefore, the country east of Strymon (Struma) appeared to be practically clear of the enemy, but that afternoon the Bulgarians brought up 20000 fresh troops, including their 1st Division, and while 5,000 attacked the weak garrison left by the 7th Division at Mehomia from the north-east the remaining 15,000 were sent against the 6th Division. A critical struggle ensued, in which the 6th Division was at one moment in Danger of being annihilated, when reinforcements arrived from the 1st and 5th Divisions. A regiment from the latter enfiladed the Bulgarian line from its right flank and completely broke it up. Thus the terrible fighting to the east of Djumaia ended in a complete victory for the Greeks; but the carnage on both sides had been terrible. The 7ty Division staff learnt of the attack which was contemplated on Mehomia, and Colonel Sotilis promptly retraced his steps and made a completely successful counter-attack. Thus all that the Bulgarians gained by their attack there was the capture of some baggage, including the famous mail-bag alleged to contain letters admitting atrocities by Greek soldiers, which will be discussed in the next chapter.

In the meantime interesting developments were taking place on the Greek left. The Bulgarians were in great strength between Kustendil and Tsarevo-selo. At the urgent request of the Servian General Staff the Greeks had practically lent two divisions (III and X) to co-operate with the Servians by attacking Tsarevo-selo from the south-east. As the Servians had somewhat relaxed their efforts in the direction of Tsarevo-selo, the Bulgarians, after their defeat in front of Djumaia, were able to transfer two divisions from Tsarevo-selo and to make an attack against the Greek left, consisting of divisions III and X, under General Damianos: these two Greek divisions were obliged, in the face of overwhelming superior numbers, to fall back to Pechovo. General Moschopulos, who with his own and the 2nd Division, was at Simetli, having lost touch with the Greek forces on his left, had to choose between retreating through the Kresna Pass or trying a bold stroke. He wisely chose the latter course, and after hard fighting, established himself along the ridge Zanoga, Hassan Pasha, and at Leska, thus placing the Bulgarian forces which had advanced towards Pechovo in a very awkward predicament when “Cease fire” sounded. It is no wonder that the Bulgarians were not loth for and armistice. Their attitude in this respect is not to be explained by the presence of the Rumanian troops, because these had retired during the previous few days and were merely holding the ring. With regard to the Rumanians, it would be made clear that their invasion of Bulgaria did not take place until after the decisive battles of Bregnalitza and Kilkis-Doiran, which really overthrew the Bulgarian pretensions.

It will be seen that the operations during the past fortnight had been somewhat unsatisfactory, owing to the fact that the Servians, instead of helping the Greeks wholeheartedly to attain their object, made some attacks at Tsarevo-selo and on one or two other positions without any definite plan of campaign. As events turned out, however, General Moschopulos was on the point of completing a movement, which, in the opinion of competent military critics, would have resulted in the capture or else destruction of no less than two and a half Bulgarian divisions, amounting to about 50,000 men. Within some three or four hours this movement would have been completed; but unfortunately the Greek peace delegates at Bucharest could not be aware of the exact position; otherwise there can be no doubt that they would not have agreed to grant an armistice at the moment when they did so, for by waiting a little they would have been in a much stronger position at the Conference. The Bulgarians practically admitted the plight of their forces in the Pechovo District, for whereas they greatly advertised their temporary success in the Mehomia region, they said very little about their much more substantial success over the Greek 3rd and 10th Divisions. They realized that it was wise to be discreet and not say too much about it, but to get the armistice concluded as soon as possible. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 63.209.227.248 (talk) 01:55, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Here is the other side of the story in short according to the Bulgarian sources .The operation placed the greek army in a very critical position with both its flanks under severe pressure by the advancing units. They say that the Greek attack in the centre forced the Bulgarians to retreat to new positions north of what is now Blagoevgrad on 14th of July where fresh reinforcments of the First army were begining to arrive. On the next day the Greek army tried to advance in the direction of Blagoevgrad but was pinned down by superior artillery fire, the same thing happened on the 16th and the Greeks were never able to get closer more than 3-4 kilometres to the main Bulgarian positions. On that day general Ivanov was replaced with general Kutinchev who ordered the attacks on the flanks to begin. Bulgarians on the right flank and on the 16th of june were continuing the advance while the Greek army was forced to sent its 7th division and parts of ts 6th division to halt the Bulgarian advance on the other flank. On the 17th of June those forces managed to hald the Bulgarian Rodopski detachment and drive it back some 2 kilometres however when they did that their flank was exposed to the other Bulgarian unit which was advancing in this sector the Samokov detachment and as a result the greeks were forced to stop. On the 18th the Bulgarian units were preparing to continue the offensive when the news about the armistice arrived and the army was ordered to cease hostilities.It must be noted that Bulgarian delegates in Bucharest were left unaware of the things happening in Kresna otherwise they wouldn't have accepted the armistice. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Avidius (talkcontribs) 10:51, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
By CMELLAS--You are talking in generalities without presenting the positions of the opposing armies in any detail that can be cross checked. Price's details have been verified against the Telegrams of the Greek headquarters to the fighting units and the Divisional reports of the Greek army. Can you give me the actual names of the locations for the events you are describing? Do you seriously believe that your negotiators at Bucharest did not know the initial successes of your army in Kresna? The only thing I could believe is that the might have been left unaware of the reversals that your army suffered in the closing days of the battle of Kresna. That I could believe if I did not know that in fact the Bulgarian negotiators were briefed on the exact situation at Kresna only hours before they signed the agreement, and it is this reversal that forced them drop their demands on Kavala, which was saved from the Bulgarians. 63.209.227.248 (talk) 14:57, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
I am looking W.H. Crawfurd Prices's "The Balkan Cockpit." Book right now and the first thing I notice is that it is centred entirely on Greek operations in both wars and written mostly in Greek bias especially the last Chapter XXIX called "Bulgarian Atrocities" while leaving out the Greek atrocities.If anyone wants to know about the attrocities they should read the Carnegie Endowment Inquiry . So I hardly think "The Balkan Cockpit" is usefull for much.--Avidius (talk) 11:15, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
By CMELLAS - Of course you would thing that Price is not "useful" to your propaganda, because it exposes it. But the fact remains that Price was following the Greek headquarters at the time as a foreign correspondent and he was definitely in better position to describe the situation contemporaneously and admittedly with enough details to make his account very credible, especially when one compares the texts of the orders that emanated from the Greek General Headquarters Staff with the actions described by Price. As for the credibility of the Carnegie Endowment Inquiry, that is a different subject altogether. Needless to say that the Carnegie Comity was biased from the very beginning, and therefore was not suctioned by the Greek side. Their report, at best, does not contain any material coming from the Greek side.63.209.227.248 (talk) 14:57, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

This article seems to be solely based on Richard Hall’s book. I studied Richard Hall’s book “The Balkan Wars 1912-1913” very carefully in coming up with this review. The author is obviously fluent in Slavic Languages. The overwhelming majority of his references come from Bulgaria. That in itself is not a proof of his leanings but the text proves conclusively that he has very little knowledge of anything Greek. In fact when he gives the impression that he is describing the Greek point of view, it is manifestly obvious that he portrays events and opinions through a Bulgarian filter. As such, the book is a valuable instrument for penetrating into the Bulgarian point of view without leaving the English language. The biggest defect of the book is its faith in previous English works that were colored by J.D. Bourchier’s relentless Bulgarian propaganda. Even though he lifts many of his “sound bites” from Gibbons’ famous biography of Venizelos, he is rarely faithful to the original intent. He seems to have no notion of the rivalry between Venizelos, with his conciliatory stance and his desire to avoid the second Balkan war and the Militants in the high command that wanted nothing to do with concessions to a much stronger Bulgaria. He also has either a very limited or no understanding at all about the rivalry between Venizelos and the Greek king at the time. What really bothers me about this book is Hall’s addiction to history second-guessing. His should have, could have, would have analysis is left tonally unsupported and is frankly very tiresome. Rather than analyze what could have happened, he should have analyzed what did happen!

 In short, the book is written in a sound bite form, without the necessary details for a reasoned analysis and support of its conclusion. It is worth only in surveying the Bulgarian point of view with its American coloration.

CMELLAS 14:57, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Just an opinion[edit]

If we have to admit the truth, in the western part of the front the Bulgarian troops were exhausted and defeated, representing no more threat for the the Greek's left by 17th, as their last attack shown. Not even failed to make any progress but they broke and lost their nerve abandoning their line together with Berovo the key town of the area. Their unexpected broke was a surprise even for the Greek units of the area since only in the next day realized that after the attack Bulgarians failed to withhold even their previous line and that had abandon it together with Berovo. Greeks had send cavalry next day to try to establish contact with the Bulgarians which were nowhere to seen. I believe that their rout is a strong evidence of their over-exhaustion. After 10 days the Bulgarian effort was starting to shown signs of physical tiredness. The troops were not anymore capable of attacking whether their HQ had realized it or not. To me after 17th the Bulgarian army in the west part of front was at best only capable for defense. But I don't believe that either the Greek III & X Divisions were in position to serious counterattack them as the abandonment of the town (Berovo) shown next day.

The interesting to me is what the Bulgarian HQ was thinking to do with their central front which was by all evidence ready to collapse. Since most of their other units where heavily engaged in their sides. Maybe to make truce as soon as possible. But since the truce came before the collapse, nobody in Bulgaria will admit it, then and possibly now. In sort the Bulgarian plan was good as an idea but the forces to facilitate the directives where simply not enough and for that not the troops nor the truce were responsible. They clearly lacked the necessary forces to close the trap from the south and that was the real problem with it. As it turned out even their side-forces lacked the critical mass to decisive bend their opponent sides. The apple was to big for the available mouth and at the end was in the danger to broke.--Factuarius (talk) 14:23, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

CMELLAS - Hi Factuarius. You left me a comment somewhere else, but I can't find the place to answer, so permit me to answer here. I consider Richard Hall's book biased towards the Bulgarian POV, and that is exactly the message I was trying to convey. I think saying that the Bulgarians won the battle of Kresna is a grave injustice. We owe it to the brave men who fought and many died in that god forsaken place called Kresna to tell the story of their triumph. When lesser men would have turned and run toward safer lines, they attacked and beat the Bulgarians. The Idea the the Bulgarian emissaries would've not have signed the truce had they known the situation at Kresna is laughable. It is clear from the proceedings that it was they that were begging for a truce. The pressure by Carol of Romania was on Venizelos to convince Konstantine to agree with the ceasefire. In fact, Venizelos analyzed the situation at Kresna only hours before the treaty was signed, and as a result, he threatened the Bulgarians that if they insisted on wanting Kavala as a price to sign the treaty of Bucharest, that the operations at Kresna would have to decide the final outcome. 63.209.227.248 (talk) 15:36, 25 May 2009 (UTC)


Fully agreed.

I've post you two comments, the second about my oppinion about Hall, hope to read it. You can contact me anytime by clicking the "talk" link just to the right of my username. --Factuarius (talk) 15:49, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Personaly I don't care what an unregistered user thinks about what I believe in and second I gave you a generalistation because if I had to translate my source it would take me some time. So this author uses only Greek sourses for his book and you are telling me he is not biased, don't worry I've grown use to that kind of talk recently.At least Hall had all sources at his disposal and the advantage of being seperated by 80 years of the war. Which reminds me of the year Price published his book was it 1915? No wonder its written with obvious bias.--Avidius (talk) 18:08, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Also the thing which is well know is that the Greek king who previously refused any kind of armistice all of a sudden changed his mind when he learned what was happening at Kresna. This tells us a lot.--Avidius (talk) 18:11, 25 May 2009 (UTC)


Why affcourse the credibility of the Carnegie Endowment Inquiry will be questioned by you after all it doesn't fit your "truth" and we should preffer this Price fellow who wrote only what the Greek side told him and not listen to an independant commision consisting of representatives of Austria,France,Germany,Russia,Britain and the USA. In other words your comments can be described only as hypocritical and nationalistic.--Avidius (talk) 18:22, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

By the way Factuarius I have allready told you what the Bulgarians thought about the central part of the front and from the words used - "the Greeks couldn't get within 3-4 km of the main positions" explain very well just how much the centre was "going to fall".--Avidius (talk) 18:26, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

OK Avidius if you believe it must be such --Factuarius (talk) 18:32, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

I am only telling you what the Bulgarian sources think but affcourse If your friend here believes his sources are better just because they are Greek then he surely is right.--Avidius (talk) 18:41, 25 May 2009 (UTC)


Just read this amusing sentence  :

"The Bulgarians practically admitted the plight of their forces in the Pechovo District, for whereas they greatly advertised their temporary success in the Mehomia region, they said very little about their much more substantial success over the Greek 3rd and 10th Divisions. They realized that it was wise to be discreet and not say too much about it, but to get the armistice concluded as soon as possible."

What is he trying to tell us? So he thinks the Bulgarians admited the plight of their forces because they were winning in Mehonia(he calls it temporary even though as he says the battle wasn't over so how does he know it is temporary?) and winning againts the Greek 10th and 3rd divisions. Very credible indeed.--Avidius (talk) 19:00, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Please calm down everyone. This is not the place to debate whose grandfathers were the greatest, OK? Clearly the battle ended in an effective stalemate, before any decision could be reached. Therefore anyone can believe whatever one prefers, as always with history's "what ifs". I remind you that this is a place about facts, so let's stick to them. The facts are, the Bulgarians had relocated much of their army, and had engaged the Greek army in a very tough fight, but the Greeks, as of the armistice, were holding their ground and launching local counter-attacks. Bulgarian sources indicate that they held back the Greek counter-strikes and threatened their flanks, Greek sources that their own offensive was proceeding well. Another fact is, I've read from Greek historians (admittedly Venizelists, so not sympathetic to Constantine and therefore biased), that the Greek Army's position was certainly not as rosy as some later accounts make it, especially in Manousogiannakis' sector (he is reported to have told Constantine to seek an armistice, otherwise they would indeed enter Sofia, but with "bells hung around our necks"). Bear in mind, the Greek army had been advancing and fighting since the war began, and was at the end of a rather long supply line. This does not belittle the courage or bravery of the Greek soldiers, just the opposite, but it has to be taken into account. Anyway, I think Hall's somewhat prematurely triumphalist "Cannae-style annihilation" (the very phrasing is a clear indication of where his sympathies lie, IMO) ought to be removed. I propose that the outcome be also changed to "tactical stalemate brought about by truce". Then we can discuss as to a more neutral presentation of the whole battle, OK? Regards, Constantine 19:14, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Tacticly the battle may have been inconclusive but did it have a significant impact on the Greek side wanting to sign the armistice?--Avidius (talk) 19:27, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Quite possibly, if by "Greek side", you mean the King. Venizelos for one had been pressuring for it for days, but it was certainly the toughness of the Kresna battle that convinced Constantine to assent. On the other hand, one could argue that Constantine, knowing that he could accept the armistice whenever he wanted to (with the Romanians poised to advance on Sofia, there was not much choice for the Bulgarian government), chose to try and win an all-out victory, but miscalculated. At any rate, strategically, the war had been decided way before Kresna. Constantine 19:39, 25 May 2009 (UTC)


What I am telling you Avidius is that I don't want both of us to go back in an unpleasant climate that leading to nowhere. I just told my opinion and took yours. Trying both of us to play the oracle in a battle that never ended is just pointless whatever I will say and whatever you will say. I never tried to persuade you that Greeks wined a never ended battle because I finding it ridiculous. You are the guy who everywhere the battle is mentioning have put "Bulgarian victory" in the info boxes. Even the most nationalist Bulgarians of that era, even Hall are not agreeing with you saying at least that they WILL WIN the battle. You are insisting that they win it. Must I agree with you? Allow me at least to agree with the ultra nationalists around Ferdinand who where so sad to lose the opportunity to win the battle. But I really believe that a never ended battle is by definition inconclusive not a win for anyone. You disagree. All we have to do is to start delete his other entry or to leave the article in that ridiculous form in which the texts saying that was inconclusive and the infoboxes that was a Bulgarian victory. --Factuarius (talk) 19:56, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Oh really I have some news for you I am not the one who wrote this article and the two of us have never before discussed this battle so there is no way I could have claimed Bulgarian victory and Hall clearly says that the battle was a success for the Bulgarians but you read his book like the Devil reads the Bible so i will leave you to your convictions now that I have been found to be the "greatest nationalist in history" according to you.--Avidius (talk) 20:29, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Oh really? Who put the Bulgarian Victory in the info box? Me? I don't want to discuss how Hall reads generally the books because the theme is exhausted. Sure its' not my Bible no doubt about it. Your memory is sort, refresh it by going to the editing history of the 2nd BW. The Kresna article is direct copy-paste from it and it was you who had insisted in Hall's "Cannae-style annihilation" expression until the end. Yes I believe you are, when you have to choose between a Bulgarian-benefited lie and the truth you always choose consciously to lie. Do you want examples?--Factuarius (talk) 20:56, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

You can't compare yourself to Hall and are in no position to tell us which statement made by profesional historians is a "lie" . As for the rest back then I was undoing unexplained edits of something that had existed for a long time and for Cannae I said that the army "faced a Cannae-style defeat" and for people like you I will explain that it means the army was threatened with encirclement which is true even if you don't like it. But continue to exaggerate other peoples words at least we see who is more nationalistic around here.--Avidius (talk) 21:06, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

When I say that "I believe you are, because when you have to choose between a Bulgarian-benefited lie and the truth you always choose consciously to lie" I am speaking for YOU not for Hall. So, do you want examples about? --Factuarius (talk) 21:16, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

And still: who put the Bulgarian Victory in the info box?--Factuarius (talk) 21:18, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

It is quite obvious that under "lie" you mean Hall because this article was originally based on his book as were many of the other articles and it is him who I've used in the past so you are calling him a lier and it is not your first time you do so. So spare me your accusations.--Avidius (talk) 21:29, 25 May 2009 (UTC)



My opinion for Hall is well known but for the third time I am answering you that yes, I believe you are an ultra nationalist, because when you have to choose between a Bulgarian-benefited lie and the truth you always choose consciously to lie. Just tell me if you disagree or not to explain myself. As for me I cannot stand in being accused that I am both Bulgarian agitator and Greek nationalist same day. It's too much. I also say that I never lied and I am ready to support it every time you want. Do you?

And still: who put the Bulgarian Victory in the info box?--Factuarius (talk) 21:43, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

And for a third time you are calling Hall and perhaps all the Bulgarian historiography a lie well forgive me for not regarding Greek sources which you extensively use higher then the rest.And I have never accused you of being a probulgarian agitator so stop making up things.With that said I eagerly await what other univesal truths you will produce in the near future.--Avidius (talk) 21:55, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

No, Melas called me Bulgarophile, Bulgarian-revisionist and Bulgarian propaganda maker. You called me Greek nationalist. Is this your answer in what I directly ask you or I have to wait more?--Factuarius (talk) 22:04, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

I am not familiar with this Melas and you can wait as long s you like but I am done for now.--Avidius (talk) 22:10, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

I was sure that you will be done for now. Anyway I will await for your answers until the hell will freeze and a little more.--Factuarius (talk) 22:21, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

My answers are up there and I know you'd answer in this predictable manner but no matter, perhaps you haven't looked at a clock.--Avidius (talk) 22:30, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Can we please stop calling each other names? And can we please go back to the issue? To sum up, Avidius, would you agree to what I proposed before ("tactical stalemate brought about by truce" etc?)? If not, what do you propose? Constantine 23:00, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
OK--Avidius (talk) 12:17, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
Good, I am changing it now. If I may also suggest, let's take a couple of days off to calm down, and then see whether we can edit/expand the article to a more informative and mutually acceptable form. Regards to all. Constantine 17:14, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

I would like to improve the article in two way:

1. Change the “Stalemate brought about by Truce” to “Battle stopped after ceasefire” which is more accurate.

2. Remove the statement: By 30 July the Greek army outnumbering by the now counterattacking Bulgarian Armies was facing a defeat in a Cannae-type battle, and its reference.

Not only did the Bulgarians fail to come even close to threatening the southern entrance to the Kresna pass (The closest they came was north of Pechevo) but in the end their western forces were in danger of being destroyed, while the Nestor route was completely restored after only one day. Therefore, a Cannae-type battle took place in Hall’s imagination. CMELLAS 63.209.227.248 (talk) 13:57, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

I am yet to see a source that says that any part of the Bulgarian forces was threatened with destructuon on the contrary most sources indicate the Greek army was in the worse position.--Avidius (talk) 15:01, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Hi Avidius, Please see below for at least two sorces. 63.209.227.248 (talk) 15:57, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Here is a map of the war [[1]] the red are Bulgarians,Green Greeks and blue Serbs. The dates number of divisions and their movement are showln clearly. ПД is an abriviation for infantry division.And some of the places Сяр = Seres,Петрич=Petich,Горна Джумая = Gorna Djumaia(blagoevgrad) etc.--Avidius (talk) 15:08, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Hi Avidius, Even though the map is very rough, we agree with the map. It shows roughly where the positions were at the closing days of the war. Here is where Hall’s fallacy is: The pincher movements that the map shows were never anywhere near materializing. If fact, the greatest successes of the Bulgarian army was to push the Greek 3rd and 10th divisions toward Bukovic and Pechevo. But not only were the Greeks successful in stopping the Bulgarians, in the end they were counter attacking them and pushing them further into the Breganitza valley. While it is true that the Greek II and IV divisions did not complete the capture of the Hassan Pacha-Leska hights, but if they did, the Bulgarian forces west of the Malesh Planina would be completely sounded by the III and X divisions to the south and East, the II and IV Greek divisions to the North – North East and the Serbians to the west, North-west. The armistice put an end to it though, and it will be left to our imagination to make up possible senarios as it could have ended. As for the Pincher from the Northeast of the Greek Forces, Not only it did not materialize, but it was very short lived. The worst it could have done was to close the Greek communications lines through the Nestos (Mesta) valley, but even that was averted by the Greek forces. You will find a complete text of this in W.H. Crawfurd Prices's "The Balkan Cockpit.". And Cassavetti, D. J., “HELLAS AND THE BALKAN WARS”, New York: DODD, MEAD and COMPANY (1914).:

For your convenience and those who would like to follow this thread I will reprint it here (Hopefully I am not violating any copyright rules here)

The answer to where things stood at the time of the Bucharest Treaty with some commentary will come from W.H. Crawfurd Prices's "The Balkan Cockpit", London (1913)

Let me then start Price’s narrative from page 334:

The respective lines occupied by the rival armies at this stage in the operation ( The night of the 26th July) were as follows:

Bulgarians – Cuka Golek (1551); Golek(1120); Hassan Pacha (1495); Dubostiza-Mostance-Deljanovo(east of Djumia) – Arisvanitza range.

Greeks – Bejaztepe (III); Pantzarovo (X); Rugen (IV); Trescovo(II); Uranovo (I); Summit 1378 and Ognar Mah (II); Marova and Predel Han (VII).

At this time, as a consequence of the failures of the Servian attacks on Banja Cuka and Pobijen (N.E. Kotchana) the Bulgarians were able to dispatch heavy reinforcements to the assistance of their army opposed to the Greeks. Nine battalions and three batteries of field artillery of the I Army came up to strengthen General Sarafoff’s left flank (Arisvanitza), and a part of the IX Division was descending of the Greek right via Jakuruda.

The subsequent temporary inactivity of the Servian army now led the Bulgarians, for the first time in the history of the campaign since their initial attack, to take the offensive. The plan of their headquarters’ staff was to trap the Hellenes in the Struma Valley. They, therefore, planned to march their divisions from Cuka Golek and Golek (part of the IV Army which had hitherto been opposed to the Serbs) along the Bregalnitza Valley via Trabotiviste and Razloviche, and to accompany the Movement by a descent of General Teneff’s brigades from Isternik and Pancharevo. This continued attack had for its object to defeat the III and X Divisions, following which the Bulgars would have marched due east through Bukovik, Djamitepe, and the road to its junction with the Struma at Jenikoi. In the eastern theatre the battalions of the IV Division were to unite with General Deloff’s division, recapture Mehomia and Dobrinista, and close in on the Greeks from that point. The plot was carefully laid, and, had it been successfully carried out, would have bottled up the Greek I, II, IV, V, VI and VII Divisions in the Struma Valley. What happened is as follows:

The divisions of the IV Army concentrated towards Trabotiviste and Razloviche, and part of General Teneff’s division advanced by Isternik and Pancharevo, where they likewise concentrated. On neither hand, however, was any offensive undertaken.

On the same day (27th July) General Deloff, employing the 1st and 9th Regiments of the Bulgarian I division, attacked the summit 1378, and, having driven out the Greek advance guard, turned against the VI Division at Ognar Mah and Asagimah. A terrific struggle raged all day, but thanks to the timely arrival of the VII Division, which had marched from Predel Han via Osenovo, the fight went to the Hellenes. In the evening the stronghold of 1378 was assaulted, and during the night fell to the VII Division. The left on the Bulgarian center then retired in disorder towards Djumia, and on the evening of 28th July the Greeks held the approaches to Djumia, and on the evening they occupied the following line: VI and VII on height 1378; V, Papasbasi (1079); I, Trescovo; II and IV advancing against the Bulgarians at Hassan Pacha; on the left both sides held their positions without attack.

The defeat administered on the Bulgarian center had obviously been severe, for the enemy retired north towards Dubnitza, setting fire to a quarter (A’s comment: Greek quarter) of Djumia in their retreat. They left behind them simple detachments of infantry, who watched the plain south of Djumia. On the same day the III and X Divisions were attacked by the concentrated Bulgarian forces – greatly superior in number – on both their left and right flanks, which were then to the south of Bejaztepe (1235). One attack was delivered from the valley of the Bregalnitza, and the other from Pancharevo-Cervnik. The Greek position speedily became critical, and the General commanding the two divisions was obliged to withdraw towards Pechevo, and to occupy anew the line Bukovik-1450. The retreat was carried out in good order, and nothing was lost, despite the fact that the Bulgars we often as close as 35 yards to the guns which had been left to cover the retirement. At Bukovik-1405 the Hellenes offered a further resistance, but in the face of a determined attack by the Bulgarian right, they were obliged to continue their retreat, and in the evening held the positions Bukovik (X) and Pechevo (III). The enemy halted at Umliano.

The Greek IV Division was at Rugen, and the II to the west of Trescovo. They had taken no previous part in the encounter, but in view of the new development, headquarters issued the following orders:

1. The (Greek) right, consisting of the I, V, VI and VII Divisions, is to maintain its positions, keeping watch on Bulgarian movements to the north. 2. The II and IV Divisions are, on the morning of the 29th, to attack the enemy’s position at Leska and Hassan Pacha, in order to cut off the retreat of the Bulgarians who are operating against the III Division.. 3. The field batteries of the III and IV Divisions, which are posted on the main road south of the Kresna Pass at Jenikoi, are to cross the river and mount the road via Bresnitza to the heights of Djamitepe. Simultaneously the engineers of these divisions are to prepare the said road for the passage of the artillery. 4. General Damianos (commanding the III and X Divisions) is to resist the Bulgarian attack at all costs, and on the first possible opportunity, to counter-attack.

These orders, which are certainly not those of a defeated general, were also communicate to Servian headquarters.

During the night 28th-29th, the Bulgarians delivered a night attack on the heights of Kaditza-Bukovik, held by the Greek X Division. They had evidently been assured that the turning-point in a hitherto disastrous campaign had at length been reached, for they advanced signing patriotic songs, and giving vent to loud hurrahs. The Hellenes however held their ground. Nest morning, the battle was continued against the two divisions, and during the whole day the Bulgars repeated their determined effort to obtain possession of the coveted heights. The battle finished with a slight advantage to the left wing of the Greek III Division as the result of a counter attack.

A determined combat was meantime raging round Hassan Pacha. The importance of the occupation of paramount heights in the universally mountainous country over which the second half of the campaign was fought, will have become obvious to the layman, and it may be said that the possessor of Hassan Pacha held the key to the existing position. Neither side, therefore, spared any effort to emerge victorious from the struggle, and as a result of the fighting on the 29th, the Greeks succeeded in capturing the advance lines on the foothills.

Headquarters now received the somewhat disconcerting information that several battalions of Bulgarians, descending from Jakuruda, had re-occupied Mehomia, and that the Greek garrison of one battalion of infantry, with three mountain batteries, had been obliged to retreat to Predel Han with a loss of two batteries. The VII Division, which had remained in action to the west of height 1378, was then ordered to return to Mehomia, re-take the town, and restore communications with Nevrekop. The troops made a night march south and on the morning of the 30th July attacked the enemy vigorously, repulsed them, re-took the guns, and restored the status quo ante.

To return now to the Greek left. On the Morning of the 30th July the II and IV Divisions continued their attack on Hassan Pacha. The fight raged without interruption, for it was considered absolutely essential that all the hostile positions on Hassan Pacha and Leska should be captured. The Greek attack was rendered increasingly difficult owing to the presence of Bulgarian batteries in position north of Leska, who shelled the troops vigorously, and subjected them to a cross fire. This development forced the Greek Commander to detach a column from his left flank and deliver a counter attack. The Hellenes how succeeded in driving their enemy from line after line of trenches until, at 9 p.m., they arrived at a distance of only fifty yards from the last Bulgarian positions.

The same day, the III and X Divisions, after having repulsed the Bulgarian attacks of the morning, counter-attacked the enemy with such effect that by evening they had forced them back beyond the line Bukovik-1450. The six Greek batteries had by this time arrived on the heights of Djamitepe, ready for the attack o the morrow.

The orders issued by King Constantine for the operations of 31st July were for the III and X divisions to push their attack towards the north, and for the II and IV to complete the capture of the heights Hassan Pacha-Leska and to proceed thence to attack the rear of the Bulgarian troops opposing the III and X divisions. The VII Division was ordered to attack and take Mehomia at all cost. Complete tranquility prevailed over the center.

These orders were issued at midnight, and no sooner had they been communicated to the divisions than the telegraph began to tick out the news of the signature of the armistice at Bucharest.

I would appear, therefore, that it was in reality the Bulgars who were saved from a decisive defeat. Their attempt to reach Jenikoi had failed, the capture of Hassan Pacha and Leska was imminent, and their five or more brigades in the south would thereupon have been surrounded by the Servians on the west, two Greek divisions plus six batteries on the south and five divisions on the north. So had the tables been turned, and with this position, and the consequent failure of their strategy before them, it is difficult to see how the Bulgarians can claim to have been robbed the fruits of their victories by the signature of the armistice."

Here I end the typing from Price’s book.

Therefore, as you can see the Greek right is quickly repaired, Mahomia is in Greek hands again, and the Nestos (Mesta) valley wide open all the way to Kavala. In the Greek left, with the Fall of Hassan Pacha heights and Leska the Bulgars are in critical position, totally surrounded in the Bregalnitza Valley and they were certainly looking at a very uncertain future. Most importantly, the Greek center along the Struma Valley was left in total control, without any opposition. What could stop the Greek center from marching to Dubnitza and Kustendil?

Since Price was with the Greek headquarters at the time, he was definitely in better position to describe the situation contemporaneously and admittedly with enough details to make his account very credible, especially when one compares the texts of the orders that emanated from the Greek General Headquarters Staff with the actions described by Price.

And from page 341 we read:

"The entrance of Rumania into the ring was a disconcerting development for the Bulgarians, and to that extent do they deserve our sympathy; but to suggest that it contributed to the defeat of the Bulgarian army b the Greeks and Serbians is to impose too greatly upon our credulity. The Rumanians crossed the Danube on 10th July. Their march, in accordance with a previous decision of the Bulgarian Government, was absolutely unopposed, and it did not prevent the Bulgars from planning the great coup which, twenty days later, was expected to deliver King Constantine and his army into their hands."

The following account is from the book:

Cassavetti, D. J., “HELLAS AND THE BALKAN WARS”, New York: DODD, MEAD and COMPANY (1914).:

Page 331.

The (Greek) right wing, consisting of the 1st, 6th and 7th Divisions, under General Manusojannakis, continued its advance along the east of the Strymon Pass, with its front extending as far east at Kremen, which was occupied by the 7th Division on July 23rd. This division advanced to Banska and Mehomia (Razlog) on July 24th and 25th, and then moved in a more westerly direction in order to keep in touch with the 6th Division, which was perched on the inaccessible crags to the of the Strymon (Struma) and to the north of Gradevo. The 6th Division pushed wit way northward as far as 1378-Metre Hill on the Arisvanitsa range, which became the scene of most sanguinary combats, being captured and recaptured on several occasions. At one moment the opposing forces, their ammunition having com to an end, hurled stones at one another across a ravine. At that time the 1st Division was on the road north of Uranovo, and the 5th Division was acting as a reserve in the Kresna Pass. The Bulgarians facing the Greek center were defated, and were forced to retire to the north of Djumaia (Blagoevgrad) on July 23rd and 24th. On July 25th the 6th Division was pushing forward in pursuit of some 4,000 Bulgarians, who were retreating before it. On that day, therefore, the country east of Strymon (Struma) appeared to be practically clear of the enemy, but that afternoon the Bulgarians brought up 20000 fresh troops, including their 1st Division, and while 5,000 attacked the weak garrison left by the 7th Division at Mehomia from the north-east the remaining 15,000 were sent against the 6th Division. A critical struggle ensued, in which the 6th Division was at one moment in Danger of being annihilated, when reinforcements arrived from the 1st and 5th Divisions. A regiment from the latter enfiladed the Bulgarian line from its right flank and completely broke it up. Thus the terrible fighting to the east of Djumaia ended in a complete victory for the Greeks; but the carnage on both sides had been terrible. The 7ty Division staff learnt of the attack which was contemplated on Mehomia, and Colonel Sotilis promptly retraced his steps and made a completely successful counter-attack. Thus all that the Bulgarians gained by their attack there was the capture of some baggage, including the famous mail-bag alleged to contain letters admitting atrocities by Greek soldiers, which will be discussed in the next chapter.

In the meantime interesting developments were taking place on the Greek left. The Bulgarians were in great strength between Kustendil and Tsarevo-selo. At the urgent request of the Servian General Staff the Greeks had practically lent two divisions (III and X) to co-operate with the Servians by attacking Tsarevo-selo from the south-east. As the Servians had somewhat relaxed their efforts in the direction of Tsarevo-selo, the Bulgarians, after their defeat in front of Djumaia, were able to transfer two divisions from Tsarevo-selo and to make an attack against the Greek left, consisting of divisions III and X, under General Damianos: these two Greek divisions were obliged, in the face of overwhelming superior numbers, to fall back to Pechovo. General Moschopulos, who with his own and the 2nd Division, was at Simetli, having lost touch with the Greek forces on his left, had to choose between retreating through the Kresna Pass or trying a bold stroke. He wisely chose the latter course, and after hard fighting, established himself along the ridge Zanoga, Hassan Pasha, and at Leska, thus placing the Bulgarian forces which had advanced towards Pechovo in a very awkward predicament when “Cease fire” sounded. It is no wonder that the Bulgarians were not loth for and armistice. Their attitude in this respect is not to be explained by the presence of the Rumanian troops, because these had retired during the previous few days and were merely holding the ring. With regard to the Rumanians, it would be made clear that their invasion of Bulgaria did not take place until after the decisive battles of Bregnalitza and Kilkis-Doiran, which really overthrew the Bulgarian pretensions.

It will be seen that the operations during the past fortnight had been somewhat unsatisfactory, owing to the fact that the Servians, instead of helping the Greeks wholeheartedly to attain their object, made some attacks at Tsarevo-selo and on one or two other positions without any definite plan of campaign. As events turned out, however, General Moschopulos was on the point of completing a movement, which, in the opinion of competent military critics, would have resulted in the capture or else destruction of no less than two and a half Bulgarian divisions, amounting to about 50,000 men. Within some three or four hours this movement would have been completed; but unfortunately the Greek peace delegates at Bucharest could not be aware of the exact position; otherwise there can be no doubt that they would not have agreed to grant an armistice at the moment when they did so, for by waiting a little they would have been in a much stronger position at the Conference. The Bulgarians practically admitted the plight of their forces in the Pechovo District, for whereas they greatly advertised their temporary success in the Mehomia region, they said very little about their much more substantial success over the Greek 3rd and 10th Divisions. They realized that it was wise to be discreet and not say too much about it, but to get the armistice concluded as soon as possible.

In closing, therefore, I request that the quotation from Hall be removed. Regards, C. Mellas 63.209.227.248 (talk) 15:50, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

To me the map is imaginative, the starting line of Greek army is wrong (the Nigrita f.i. was in Greek hands) and the glorious arrows around Kresna took place only in the dreams of the Bulgarian HQ. CMELLAS welcome back, what you say is 100% corrected by the very-very analytic 1932 edition of the war study of the Greek Army by dates and hours which I have in my hands. I also read Prices' book which is a real document --Factuarius (talk) 16:06, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Hi Factuarius. Thanks for the correction. I only reviewed the positions of the Greek and Bulgarian armies on the map at the closing days of the Second Balkan War, and even though is very rough, it is basically ok. Of course the "glorious arrows" never came even close to materialize. Could you give me the reference to the 1932 edition of the Greek Army study? Thanks, C. Mellas, 63.209.227.248 (talk) 16:22, 27 May 2009 (UTC)


My dear Factuarius this map is from the site of the Bulgarian Millitary Accademy so I can say that this is how the Bulgarian millitary views it. I understand that you preffer the Greek point of view because affcourse you are Greek still like Constantine said in one of his comments the situation of the Greek army wasn't very rosy according to their own commanders. While Mr. Price when he says about the danger to the Bulgarian right he specificaly tells us that he had heard about it from "competant" millitary people, obviously greek without however mentioning their names or anything else so I am not very certain if he had heard things right.--Avidius (talk) 16:42, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Hi Avidius, I'm sure the Bulgarian Millitary viewd the situation as the map shows. I'm not questioning that. I'm sure they would have loved to be able to bottle up the Greek Army in the Struma valey, but they couldn't. Their last ditch attempt failed. What would have or could have happened if the war continued is to large extent irrelevant. Even if the Bulgarians were able to Encirle the Greek army, they could not reverse the final outcome. There was nothing that could have done that would pull them from the terrible hole they were in. Regards, C. Mellas. 63.209.227.248 (talk) 16:56, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

And something else Mr Price's bias is also clearly noticeable by the fact that he deminished the role of the Romanian intervention which i am affraid is not shared by most other sources after all the Romaninas were outside of Sofia constantly threating to enter the city if the armistice was not signed as possible and it must be noted that the Romanians were able to hit the Bulgarian Armies in the back and made their position much worse then the Serb or Greek attacks ever did.--Avidius (talk) 17:00, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

My last coment was about the second source not Price.--Avidius (talk) 17:02, 27 May 2009 (UT

Hi Avidius, I think the point of the passage you are referring to is that the Bulgarian back was broken before Romania entered the war. There is no doubt that Bulgaria was much superior Militarily that any one of the other combatants alone, but as the battle of Bregnalitza and Kilkis-Doiran proved, Bulgaria was not strong enough to take up Greece and Serbia together, never mind if we add Romania and Turkey into the mix. I think you would agree that a lot of live were lost in the mountain passes of Pirin and that if Venizelos had his way, the second Balkan war would have never happened. Regards, C. Mellas. 63.209.227.248 (talk) 17:30, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
You will allow me to disagree on that matter as the battles of Kalimantsi and this battle clearly showed that the Bulgarian army was far from beaten and also when we look at the troop numbers which Factuarius claims are the real ones it seem the Bulgarian army was bigger then the Serbian and greek Army put toghether.--Avidius (talk) 17:35, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Also the numbers which Price gives about the Bulgarians are obviously only calculations based on what he had heard from his Greek sources so they should be viewed with some scepticism. I will try to put toghether the exact order of the battle for the Bulgarian side.--Avidius (talk) 17:17, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Hi Avidius, I look forward to your "order of battle." The only danger is that I may quote you. Thank you in advance. C. Mellas. 63.209.227.248 (talk) 17:42, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
"Ο Ελληνικός Στρατός κατά τους Βαλκανικούς Πολέμους του 1912 - 1913", Τόμος Γ', Επιχειρήσεις κατά των Βουλγάρων (Εθνικό Τυπογραφείο Αθήναι 1932). σελίδες 512 έχω και τον πρώτο τόμο που είναι οι χάρτες του Α' Βαλκανικού αλλά όχι τον Β' που είναι οι επιχειρήσεις του Α' Βαλκανικού. Είναι εξαιρετική έκδοση και πολύ σπάνια. Έχω την εντύπωση ότι είσαι εκτός Ελλάδας, εάν βρεθείς κατά τα δω θα χαρώ να σου το δώσω να βγάλεις μια σειρά. Ενδιάμεσα είμαι στη διάθεση σου για οποιαδήποτε πληροφορία από το βιβλίο. Κατά τ' άλλα καλή δύναμη και κουράγιο. --Factuarius (talk) 17:24, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Σε ευχαριστώ φίλε Factuarius. Γράφω από την Βοστόνη των Η.Π. Θα σου γράψω όταν είναι να πάω για Αθήνα να τα πούμε από κοντά. Χαιρετίσματα, Χ. Μελλάς —Preceding unsigned comment added by 63.209.227.248 (talk) 17:38, 27 May 2009 (UTC)


An interseting detail.According to colonel A.Hristov whose book published in 1922 about the war I am reading now on the day of the armistice Greek truce envoys arrieved to talk with the Bulgarian commanders before even the Bulgarians themselves received the news about the armistice. Seem like the Greek side was eager to end hostilities as soon as possible I wonder why Mr Price fails to notify us about this unless affcourse the Greek side preffered not to tell him.--Avidius (talk) 17:43, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Hi Avidius, Of course the Greeks were eager to stop. Especially the front line units. Also Venizelos, on his way to Bucharest, stooped by the Greek headquarters and tried to convince King Konstantine, who new that with International pressure mounting the ceasefire was near. But make no mistake, The Greeks left the battlefield victorious. Regards, C. Mellas.63.209.227.248 (talk) 18:05, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Oh really so perhaps you want to write Greek victory in the infobox. Sorry but the only reason the Greek troops were eager to stop fighting was because they feared defeat not victory unlike the Bulgarians who it seems were not in a hurry to sent truce envoys of their own.--Avidius (talk) 18:11, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Hi Avidius, I’m not going to even try to change your mind. Your personal beliefs are yours to cherish and keep. But, I presented enough evidence here to justify my request to either remove the sentence following content:

“In the pass of Kresna the Greeks were ambushed by the Bulgarian 2nd and 1st Army newly arrived from the Serbian front that had already taken defensive positions there. By 30 July the Greek army outnumbering by the now counterattaking Bulgarian Armies was facing a defeat in a Cannae-type battle.[1]”

Clearly, the Greeks were not ambushed in Kresna, and the Bulgarians never came even close to the Kresna pass to endanger the Greeks with encirclement.

In the box itself I propose that we replace “Stalemate brought about by truce” with “Battle stopped as a result of the armistice” and leave it at that.

I don’t think it is productive to be discussing anecdotal evidence from either side as to who was eager to stop the battle and why, when Sophia was at the mercy of you northern Neighbor and you did not have a single battalion to oppose it. My personal opinion though is that the Greeks had nothing more to gain in that war, and it was not necessary to continue the bleeding. C.Mellas. 63.209.227.248 (talk) 18:49, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

How many opposite cases you want to give you I have plenty. I never thought to made use of them because in such chaotic situation I found it natural. But I don't want to continue.--Factuarius (talk) 18:02, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
And who is answering to me. Whoever he is it will be nice if he learns to sign his post.--Avidius (talk) 17:58, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Well, if Hall is accused of unreliability and bias because he makes little use of Greek sources and is sympathetic to the Bulgarians, then this should apply to Crawford Price as well, since I doubt he made use of any Bulgarian source, and spending the war in the Greek GHQ undoubtedly coloured his views. There are always many ways to view an event, and a battle where both sides claim victory is certain to keep discussion going. Again, the resume from the whole story is: the Bulgarians planned a pincer movement, but, until the armistice, the Greek army was resisting successfully and even counter-attacking at places. The amount of headway they were making is disputed, but in the event unimportant. Both sides were fighting each other to a standstill. What could have happened if it had gone on for a few more days is debatable (the Greeks breaking through, Bulgarian reinforcements arriving, etc), but not historical. I too object to the Cannae-reference in the text, simply because of this: one may plan a Cannae-type battle, and position his forces accordingly, but unless and until the forces actually manage to encircle the enemy, it remains a plan. E.g. Schlieffen planned a Cannae-type battle on a massive scale in WWI, but it failed at Marne. If an armistice had been called then and there, with the Germans deep inside France, no one would then claim that the French army was being threatened by a "Cannae-style envelopment". Constantine 18:40, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Ok Cplakidas perhaps it can be replaced with something like the Bulgarians planned a Cannae style battle instead of the Greek army faced a Cannae style defeat. What is your opinion on the Romanian intervention because Mr.Mellas is very eager to convince me that it was alomost irrelevant for the outcome of the war.--Avidius (talk) 18:56, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Hi Avidius, On the contrary I believe the fact that Romania entered the war sealed the fate of Bulgaria. That is an indisputable fact. What could have happened if Romania did not enter the war is mere speculation on anyone’s part. Putting Cassavetti’s or Prices speculations on the article would be just as valid as putting Hall’s ridiculous statements. That is my point, and that is why I insist that we either take out Hall’s statement or include Prices and Cassavety’s statement. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 63.209.227.248 (talk) 19:08, 27 May 2009 (UTC)


What Calendar does Price use Julian or Gregorian because my books put the final Bulgarian offensive between 15th and 18th of July.And from what is quoted up I see it is not easy too see what battles he is talking about. --Avidius (talk) 19:17, 27 May 2009 (UTC) No matter I see now that its Gregorian.--Avidius (talk) 19:22, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Hi Avidius, Price is using the new calendar (Gregorian). Subtract 13 days from his dates to map to your dates. Regards, C.Mellas.63.209.227.248 (talk) 19:35, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

The Greeks were reluctant to sign armistice with Bulgaria and after Romania intervened in the war that became the Bulgarian goal and with the battle of Kresna Gorge our Command forced the Greeks to accept the armistice. Otherwise Bulgaria's enemies preferred to dictate the peace in Sofia. And somewhere here I read that the Bulgarian army was defeated in the west but that is not true at all. The Serbs were defeated at Kalimantsi and there were Bulgarian troops to the north on the border with Serbia who had previously led indecisive actions against the Serbs and were intact. With the battle of Gresna Gorge the Bulgarian army achieved its goal so it should be marked as a Bulgarian victory especially when that was sourced. --Gligan (talk) 10:22, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Gligan, please read the discussions above. Hall and the Bulgarians say one thing, the Greeks another. Both sides claim victory, but the battle was never resolved. At the moment of armistice, both armies were still standing and fighting. Please do not unilaterally revert an arduously reached consensus. Constantine 10:29, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
What consensus. The Bulgarians say the we haven't lost the battle of Kukush because our aim was to retreat to more favourable positions as the Bulgarian army actually did. The Greeks consider that battle for being a great victory which is not true and they push that POV and now you are talking for consensus. --Gligan (talk) 10:33, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
The consensus that was reached between three Greek users and a Bulgarian user, namely that no result was actually reached at the battle, because the armistice interveneed. As for the battle of Kilkis/Kukush (which is not the point here) may be presented in whatever way you wish, but there was a battle, against heavily fortified positions, and the Greeks were left in possession of the field. To me, that counts as victory. Kresna would have been a Bulgarian victory had the Greeks retreated, or if the Bulgarians had managed to isolate and destroy a part of the Greek army. That did not happen. it was a brutal slogging match which (thank God) was ended by the armistice. But at the time, both sides held their positions. Constantine 10:40, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

Clearing our minds[edit]

Although the battle took place deep to the Bulgaria, what the name is specifying is a bulgarian attack and to this everybody agreeing. As such I believe the result is more than clear: The attack clearly failed. The greek army stood the attack and at the end succesfully counterattacked. To me it is obviously a greek victory. Defending victory, but victory.--Factuarius (talk) 17:10, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

Greek victory in your mind perhaps but not in that of the Greek king obviously who was so concerned that demanded the armistice to be signed as soon as possible because of your "greek victory"--Avidius (talk) 17:49, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Do not speak personal and I will do the same. No, Bulgarians were so concerned that demanded the armistice to be signed as soon as possible because the Romanians were 30 km from Sofia having nothing to stop them. Athens was very far.--Factuarius (talk) 18:12, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Do not forget that it was the Greek side which refused to sign the armistice the others were ready and the Bulgarian Army certainly didn't have the task of reaching Athens but to force the armistice, a task in which it succeded briliantly, dealling quite heavy blows on the Greek Army which was allready exhausted by the long march chasing the inferior Bulgarian Second Army. An endeavour in which it gave more cassualties then in the war with the Ottomans.--Avidius (talk) 18:24, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Avidius, please don't forget that the Greek Government was suing for peace since February 1913. Since August 24 the Greek claims did not change, and in the end, Greece succeeded to get the maximum its demands from Bulgaria. Chasing even an inferior army for 30 well into Bulgaria, far beyond where the Greeks had claims was not the smartest thing the Greeks could have done, but chase them they did. The fact that the III, X, II and IV Greek divisions were prevented from destroying the Bulgarian armies that were fighting the Greek III and X divisions to the west of Palesh Planina you owe to Venizelos and the Romanian King who convinced King Konstantin to agree to the ceasefire. The fact that the Greek Army was starting to have logistical difficulties due to the length of its communications lines and the fact that the Army was tired of the 30 days march does not mean that forced it to a ceasefire. The ceasefire was a strategic Greek decision weeks before the ephemeral Bulgarian successes in the battle of Kresna. Acstamos (talk) 18:34, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Wrong: During the march to Kresna greeks had less casualties than bulgarians, you are not counting the prisoners. Wrong: the difference between 108,000 and 117,000 when the 108,000 are the defenders is not really an inferiority, but this is a military issue. Agree: the battle playing a role to the greek acceptance of armistice. But what we are talking here is about the outcome of the battle. When someone is attacking if will succeed to rout the opponent is the winner, if fail the opponent wins. If in the battle of Kilkis the greeks were failing to rout the bulgarians who could accept a greek win? And what Hall and bulgarian historians would write about it? Any idea? --Factuarius (talk) 18:51, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

You are wrong including your made up numbers of a Bulgarian Army(Greek estimates) consisting of two and a half divisions ( in reality maximum 75,000 men). And this is by no interpretation a Greek victory no matter what twisted definition you will create just to prove your false point. Especially when the Greek side was the one which back down before its army got destroyed.--Avidius (talk) 13:26, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Avidius, I am still waiting for your description of the battle of Kressna with references. I presented the complete narrative from Price and Cassavetti. All evidence that I have read so far points to the fact that Hall's description of the battle is bogus, to the extent that any account of the order of the battle, even if it comes from the Bulgarian high command's point of view will prove that Hall's account is unequivocally wrong. The idea that the Greek army was bottled up at Kresna and came even close to be surrounded does not have basis in truth. The Bulgarian right attacking the Greek III and X divisions never made it even close to kressna. They were on the Bregalnitza side of Malesh Planina. They were stopped by the Greeks at the Pechevo - Bukovik line, and then they were counter-attacked by the Greek III and X divisions, while they were being encircled by the Greek II and IV divisions which sought to cut off their only line of retreat through Leska and Hassan Pacha. There is absolutely no evidence that there was a single Bulgarian unit anywhere near Jenikoi, at the southern entrance to the Kresna pass, or near Simitly at the norther entrance to the Kresna pass. The Greek Forces had complete control of the Kresna pass on both sides, while the balk of the Greek force in the central sector were north of the Pass with both the Struma and Mesta valleys open and under the Control of the Greek Army. To the right of the Greek army, the Bulgarian attack at Mehomia (Razlog) was defeated and the entire Mesta (Nestos) valley remained under the firm control of the Greek forces. You can read all this in both Cassavetti, or Price (Mountain Warfare, pg. 328-344).
Quite frankly, I don't understand you fixation about the Greek Government's decision to accept the begging of the Bulgarian government for peace. All Bulgaria's enemies descended upon her because of the Bulgarian treachery, and Bulgaria was at our mercy. Bulgaria may try to save face after its monumental blander not only during the Second Balkan War, but also during WWI and WWII, but the fact remains, you were treated a lot more leniently than you should have, and it was not because of your defeated army, but because of the jealousies between the Big Powers and among Greece, Serbia, and Romania.Acstamos (talk) 18:11, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Acstamos (talk) 18:14, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

In the end it was the Greek king who came running at the tabble in Bucharest and that was not because his army was winning or mounting small counterattacks here and there but because he knew what was going to happen if the war had continued. Also it is a well known fact that the protocol of the armistice included a clause that specified the creation of a demarcation line between the armies and also allowed THE MOVEMENT OF TROOPS IN AND OUT FROM THEIR PLACES ON THOSE LINES. Now you might guess what that means and I will tell you that it wasn't the Bulgarians who asked for it.--Avidius (talk) 19:34, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Please explain what is the significance of the condition that allowed THE MOVEMENT OF TROOPS IN AND OUT FROM THEIR PLACES ON THOSE LINES.? Is it your opinion or is it an opinion offered by some reference you can offer? Thanks in advance for your kind cooperation.Acstamos (talk) 04:08, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
Come on Avidius, let’s get serious here. We are trying to correct an encyclopedic article. I have presented my sources with a lot of detail. You have to yet produce the timeline you promised for the battle of Kresna. Let me say that the Greek king never went to Bucharest. According to Gibbons[1] “When Czar Ferdinand realized that if hostilities continued the Rumanians would occupy Sofia he begged King Charles to suggest an armistice to the Greeks and Serbians The Rumanian sovereign in accord with his ministers was glad to accept this opening It was not the intention of the Rumanians to make an irreparable breach between themselves and the Bulgarians The occupation of Sofia would have been an unnecessary humiliation for the Bulgarians and might have led to complications for the Rumanians One of the purposes of Rumanian intervention the preservation of the balance of power in the Balkans would have been defeated if the Bulgarians were too badly worsted by the other two Balkan States So Charles telegraphed to Constantine asking for the cessation of hostilities Constantine showed the telegram to Venizelos and said that he was willing to negotiate but that for military reasons hostilities ought not to cease Venizelos remonstrated strongly He pointed out to King Constantine that it was extremely impolitic to refuse the mediations of King Charles when what was wanted above all things was the kindly attitude of Rumania toward Greek interests during peace negotiations Venizelos moreover did not share the King's optimism concerning the invasion of Bulgaria He thought that it would be a very difficult task to reach Sofia and that it would entail unnecessary bloodshed and risk seeing that the Greek victories had already covered more than the territorial claims Venizelos proposed the following answer Though I know Bulgarian perfidy and am not altogether sure that the request for peace is genuine and means an acknowledgment of defeat I feel the duty incumbent upon me to accept Your Majesty's intercession trusting that the Greek interests will find a just advocate in your Person during the negotiations for peace The King did not yield at once He seemed impervious to the argument that Rumania's help at the peace table would be precious for Greece and to the statesmanlike observation of Venizelos that it must be remembered that Rumania had not entered the war pour les beaux yeux de la Grece et de la Serbie Venizelos repeated his arguments At last seeing the King was obdurate he said that he would yield if Constantine as commander in chief of the army took the responsibility of stating that military reasons made the continuation of hostilities imperative Constantine did not want to do this He very soon had to admit although with reluctance that the policy of Venizelos was as the Premier himself put it in narrating later this discussion absolutely necessary not only from the political and diplomatic point of view but also from the purely military point of view The truth of the matter is that the Greeks were getting into a hole Whether they stopped where they were or continued to advance they ran the risk of having the tables turned upon them because the Serbians were leaving them in the lurch The mutual jealousy and suspicion of Balkan races do not permit a loyal military cooperation After the battle of the Bregalnitza which ended on July 10 the Serbians began to get nervous over the successes of their Greek allies They feared that easy victories of Greeks over Bulgarians might necessitate a third war with Greece for Monastir On July 11 giving the ostensible reason that such a measure was necessary to protect their rear against the Albanians the Serbian General Staff had withdrawn from the front a number of the best regiments They were placed in a position to act quickly if the Greeks attempted to seize Monastir.”

Now I will let you make up your own mind about who dragged whom to Bucharest.

[1] Herbert Adams Gibbons, “VENIZELOS,” Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston (1920).

Best regards, Acstamos (talk) 04:00, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

We should have been treated less leniently? Well affcorse we know the Greek ambitions to have all of Bulgaria up Plovdiv and further. Ambitions that had absolutely no demographical or important historical justification but were only the projection of an overconfident Greek imperialism greatly overestimated its own armed forces and culminated in the debacle of the 1919-1922 war with Turkey.I suggest you don't raise such questions because things can get quite ugly and this is not the proper place.--Avidius (talk) 19:27, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Come on Avidius, We really have to get serious if we are to finish this article. I of course don’t know any Greek who is contemplating taking Philipopolis (Plovdiv to you) or any other part of Bulgaria. Our debacle in Asia Minor in 1922 is a fact that we have to live with. O did not raise the Asia Minor disaster, you did, and if you want to get ugly, I’m afraid I will not follow you. This is ugly enough for me. I call you for the last time, if you have anything constructive to offer, please present your argument with the proper references. Best regards, Acstamos (talk) 04:00, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
When I said the things about Plovdiv I affcourse was taking about the moods in the past not those at present since you raised the questioned.Also the thing I said about the Greek king was affcourse in figurative meaning so I see that we can't understand eachother.--Avidius (talk) 10:01, 31 May 2009 (UTC)


By the way here a quote from your source "The truth of the matter is that the Greeks were getting into a hole Whether they stopped where they were or continued to advance they ran the risk of having the tables turned upon". Indeed the tabbles were allready turning at Kresna. Even proGreek sources confirm it.--Avidius (talk) 10:11, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

So, what does the statement mean to you? I hope you don't think it means that the Greek army was ready to be annihilated by the Brave Bulgarian Army.Acstamos (talk) 06:36, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Do we have to split the discussion?[edit]

My intentions are to try to make a cool dialog about, but I am also ready to answer any characterizations like "twisting facts" etc.. From the recently posted replies I understand that what we are discussing here are three separated issues. The battle of Kilkis, the battle of Kresna and how and why 2nd BW ended. It is my opinion that if we have to go to a result, we have to discuss them as they are: separately. I suggest to open a dialog about the Kilkis-Lahana battle there (I am ready to participate) and another discussion under what conditions the Greeks and Bulgarians agreed to end the war, in the 2nd BW page (also ready to participate), leaving here only what is relevant to this battle: the result. I understand that all these are related, but are two different battles and one war what we talking. Mixing up all three we are going to nowhere. If we have an agreement on that I will start right away the two other discussions by putting my positions there. --Factuarius (talk) 05:08, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

I said twisted definition so be more concentrated when you read.I also don't see what is there to discuss about Kilkis-Lahana no one is denying the Greek victory there and if you want to discuss the troop numbers that is different question.--Avidius (talk) 09:53, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
"What consensus. The Bulgarians say the we haven't lost the battle of Kukush because our aim was to retreat to more favourable positions as the Bulgarian army actually did. The Greeks consider that battle for being a great victory which is not true and they push that POV and now you are talking for consensus." --Gligan
OK, I am ready to answer any characterizations like "twisted definition" etc.. But before that I understand that what we are discussing here are three separated issues. The battle of Kilkis, the battle of Kresna and how and why 2nd BW ended. It is my opinion that if we have to go to a result, we have to discuss them as they are: separately. I suggest to open a dialog about the Kilkis-Lahana battle there (I am ready to participate) and another discussion under what conditions the Greeks and Bulgarians agreed to end the war, in the 2nd BW page (also ready to participate), leaving here only what is relevant to this battle: the result. I understand that all these are related, but are two different battles and one war what we are talking. Mixing up all three going to nowhere. If we have an agreement on that I will start right away the two other discussions by putting my positions there. ----Factuarius (talk) 13:35, 31 May 2009 (UTC)


Affcourse these are different battles. I am not sure if Gligan meant Kilkis or Kresna.--Avidius (talk) 14:48, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

Gligan meant Kilkis/Kukush battle, if he insisting that it was not truly a Greek victory he can start a discussion in that battle's page. Now can we transfer the discussion about the conditions leading to the end of the war to the war's discussion page so to center ourselves in the result of the battle here (if any)? --Factuarius (talk) 15:10, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

In the discussion about the conditions leading to the end of the war in the war's page we can discuss more generally the issue (great powers' pressures, Romania's policy, Bulgar-Romanian operations towards Sofia, Bulgaria's intentions, conditions in the Serbo-Bulgarian fronts etc.) --Factuarius (talk) 15:23, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

I don't really understand why you keep arguing who won the last battle (at Kresna). Even though the greeks, serbians, turks and romanians won the war most of the sources speak of the superior position of the bulgarian army in the south-western front. Any you know that the winners are the ones who write the history books. I don't really think that Venizeloz would sign an armsticle haiving in mind his hatred for the bulgarians. And don't reply that he wasn't aware of the last movement of the greek army! As much as I know king Constantine was the one who offered tha armsticle, knowing that the serbs won't be able to help him south of Sofia. BraikoT

Romanians at Sofia and the King's telegram to Venizelos[edit]

Let me explain this change. The Romanians were in the vicinity of Sofia already on July 10. However Constantine continued to push north until July 15 - the time when the Bulgarians attacked his flanks and forced him to halt the advance on Gorna Dzhumaya. So the Romanian factor was not decisive for the Greek actions (the Russian diplomacy neither, by the way). On the other hand, Constantine's telegram to Venizelos from July 16/17 is pretty well known to scholars. --85.130.31.181 (talk) 22:01, 28 June 2010 (UTC)

I think that you have not given any justification for the changes your have made to the entry. In particular, you quoted three words from a telegram that King Constantine sent to Venizelos, but you are not giving any source where we can read the telegram and the associated analysis, rather, you just make innuendos. This is not a way to write an encyclopedic entry. In edition, you are disregarding the entire discussion earlier. Please provide any documentation you have, otherwise a lot of your entries will have to be reverted. Thank you in advance for your cooperation. Acstamos (talk) 16:15, 8 January 2013 (UTC)

Follows King Constantine's telegram to Venizelos, whereby he accepts to stop the fighting and urges Venizelos to arrange a ceasefire by "tomorrow," if possible.

«Ενεκεν ανεξηγήτου αδρανείας του σερβικού στρατού επεσύραμεν διά της ταχείας μας προχωρήσεως το μεγαλύτερον μέρος του βουλγαρικού στρατού εναντίον μας. Εις το κέντρον μας και την δεξιάν πτέρυγαν ενικήσαμεν λαμπρώς χθες παρά τας σοβαράς ενισχύσεις του. Υπεχώρησε πέραν της Τζουμαγιάς. Αλλ' η νίκη εστοίχισε πολύ ακριβά. Σοβαραί δυνάμεις βουλγαρικαί προσέβαλλον σήμερον την στρατιάν Δαμιανού εις την αριστεράν μας πτέρυγαν. III και X Μεραρχίαι ηναγκάσθησαν να υποχωρήσουν προς Τζαμί Τεπέ. Η III, πιθανώς πλησίον αυτού αγνοώ ακόμη πού και εις ποίαν κατάστασιν ευρίσκεται. Η IV εν κρισίμω καταστάσει. Κατόπιν 4 τηλεγραφημάτων πιεστικών το σερβικόν στρατηγείον εξέδωκεν επί τέλους διαταγήν προς την III στρατιάν να επιτεθή αύριον. Αι εναντίον μας δυνάμεις προέρχονται εκ Τσαριμπρότ Κιουστεντίλ. Ο στρατός μου ήχθη εις τα φυσικά και ηθικά όρια. Κατόπιν των συνθηκών τούτων δεν δύναμαι πλέον να αρνούμαι την ανακωχήν ή την αναστολήν των εχθροπραξιών. Προσπαθήσατε να ευρήτε τρόπον να επιτύχητε αναστολήν εχθροπραξιών ει δυνατόν από αύριον».

And here is Venizelos’s reply:

«Θα κάμω ό,τι δυνατόν όπως επιτύχω τουλάχιστον αναστολήν εχθροπραξιών, καίτοι είναι ευνόητον ποίας παρουσιάζει το πράγμα δυσχερείας, όταν χθες ακόμη απεκρούσαμεν ταύτην προσφερομένην».

I post here the original Greek, so that there is no possibility of misunderstandings. Those who can read it in the original Greek can see clearly that Constantine, having realized that the Serbs were not willing to fight any more, and given that Greece was pressured from all sides to accept a ceasefire, he did not want to drive his army any more and therefore accepted the start of peace negotiation and urged for a speedy ceasefire. And here is a interesting article you can read on the subject: http://www.bloko.gr/ellada/h-synthhkh-toy-boykoyrestioy-kai-oi-balkanikoi-polemoi.html Acstamos (talk) 17:34, 8 January 2013 (UTC)

Greek point of view[edit]

To me it is crystal clear, that all articles on the Second Balkan War and even the First Balkan War are written by pro-Greek authors, quoting pro-Greek sources. Even the main article about the FBW shows the Bulgarians in very negative shades. The problem is that most sources defend the pro Entente forces (Serbia and Greece) and of course, the winning side. If you look even at the size of the Greek army it is visible, that it cannot be of any concern for the Bulgarians, especially after is is already on Bulgarian territory and after the Serbs are stopped at Kalimantsi. Quoting Greek telegrams as an official source is ridiculous. I last checked this article about 2 years ago and the battle for Kresna Gorge was listed as stalemate. Now it turns out that Greek forces have entered Gorna Dzhumaya (Blagoevgrad). I fear that in 2 years I will see quotes from Greek generals claiming they have captured Sofia and are advancing towards Varna. I realize that the Bulgarian sources cannot be impartial and show its army in the best light possible, but they also show the mistakes and the mention some facts, which might be misinterpreted. Have some dignity and accept the weaknesses of the Greek state at the time, after all back then things were quite different.

BraikoT — Preceding unsigned comment added by 212.122.187.76 (talk) 09:32, 4 August 2014 (UTC)