Talk:Battle of the Crna Bend (1916)

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I would like to see quotes from all three sources concerning this battle.

  • Mann, A. J., The Salonika Front, A&C Black, London, 1920, p. 69
  • Spencer Tucker, Priscilla Mary Roberts pp. 423
  • Todorov Kosta pp. 95

Since The Oxford illustrated history of the First World War, by Hew Strachan, p75, states it was an Allied victory. This source is quite revealing in information[1] as well. --Kansas Bear (talk) 22:45, 23 January 2010 (UTC)

See pages 69 and 70. And that having in mind that the author is anti-Bulgarian biased. --Gligan (talk) 23:03, 23 January 2010 (UTC)
OK? So how does that negate the reference that states it was an Allied victory? And what is the reason for the anti-Bulgarian statement?? --Kansas Bear (talk) 23:37, 23 January 2010 (UTC)
He is talking about the bravery of Serbs, British and does not make the same for the Bulgarians and their bravery and valour is obvious I think. He calls the Bulgarians Bulgars which is wrong and considers them "the enemy". What I have removed was his statement "decisive Serbian victory" which is ridiculous having in mind that the Serbs were not the only ones involved and there was nothing decisive of taking one single town with absolute no importance for the war having in mind that the Bulgarians took positions at only 5 km to the north, at heights which fully controlled the lowlands around Bitola. The Entente never managed to push back the Bulgarians from there with force until the end of the war. --Gligan (talk) 23:59, 23 January 2010 (UTC)
Well, 1)the book is copyrighted 1920, 2)nothing mentioned, in that book, negates a reference from 1998 stating it was an Allied victory, 3) the author's mistake(Bulgars) would indicate this individual was ignorant of the people and possibly the situation he was writing, 4) I'm not interested in ethnicities, I'm interested in factual sources. --Kansas Bear (talk) 00:17, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
According to Balkan Firebrand - The Autobiography of a Rebel Soldier and Statesman, by Todorov Kosta,p95[2], should I assume since Kosta calls the French and Serbs, the enemy that this author is anti-French and anti-Serb? Not that I even care.

But the French and the Serbs speedily counterattacked and after fierce and bloody fighting occupied Mt. Kaimakchalan in Serbian Macedonia. Threatened with being cut off and annihilated, the First Army retreated to the Cherna river, and the enemy occupied strategic Bitolj, the third largest city in Macedonia. Although this defeat depressed both the people and the army, it was counterbalanced by Bulgarian victories in Rumania.

This reference states that the Bulgarians suffered a defeat, which would be an Entente(Allied) victory. --Kansas Bear (talk) 05:18, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
Generally the orders of the Bulgarian army was to hold their positions and not to advance or make any attempt for decisive breakthrough (that was obvious decision in order to keep Greece neutral, although I do not find it neutral to host one of the belligerents on it territory) while the objective of the Allied was to make a breakthrough in the Bulgarian front - thing that they achieved only once at Dobro Pole - that was a decisive victory. The battle of the River Cherna was not a defeat for Bulgaria in strategic value because the front remained stable and the Entente could not use the only major town they captured.
"The Bulgarians retreat at 5 km to the north of Bitola" - that means that the Bulgarians had lost and it is far better that "Decisive Serbian victory" - a victory that can also be credited to France and that was not decisive at all but simply a bloodshed after which the Bulgarian objectives remained intact and the Entente objectives failed. --Gligan (talk) 09:13, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
I'm not interested in some interpretation of the Bulgarians orders. I'm interested in what factual sources say about this battle. So far Mann(1920) does not show any information that would indicate that the Entente(Allied) force lost the battle. The Kostra(1943), states it was a Bulgarian loss.
According to Encyclopedia of World War I, by Spencer Tucker, Priscilla Mary Roberts,p423

French troops retook Florina on 17 September. Weather and transportation difficulties as well as determined Bulgarian resistance slowed the Entente advance thereafter. Fighting was particularly intense around the Cherna river. Finally in November the Serbian First Army succeeded in turning the Bulgarians. On 19 November Serbian troops entered Bitola....

None of this information shows anything that negates that it was an Entente(Allied) victory. I have 1 source stating an Entente victory, 1 source states a Bulgarian defeat, and two sources that give information concerning the battle but nothing that refutes the previous sources.
Unless some information can be found that refutes that this battle was an Entente(Allied) victory, I will be changing the result portion to indicate that(by Friday). I have seen nothing that says it was a Decisive Serbian Victory, so that is a non-issue here. Your thoughts, Gligan? --Kansas Bear (talk) 18:19, 24 January 2010 (UTC)

It could be an Entente victory or more precisely local/pyrrhic Entente victory or tactical Entente victory. What do you suggest? --Gligan (talk) 18:40, 24 January 2010 (UTC)

Tactical Entente victory would be a workable solution, IMO. We can change the result to Tactical Entente victory with the two sources that indicate an Entente victory and Bulgarian defeat and drop the Mann and the Spencer/Roberts references. Do you agree? --Kansas Bear (talk) 20:19, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
All right, that might work out for now. If I find other sources in the library which do not mention a defeat we might change it to "Inconclusive<sources>/Tactical Entente victory<sources>. --Gligan (talk) 20:35, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
I have no problem with that as long as the sources are modern. --Kansas Bear (talk) 20:41, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
How will you define modern :) I think that all historians use as background the official date from the high command... The book I have cited below in I think from 1943 and I think it uses only official and reliable data because while I was reading between the rows I could see things like "mistakes by the command", "lack of success", "the regiments are absolutely unreliable", "low morale" - those are all from the reports of the commanding officers I suppose; so that particular book seems quite neutral for me, it is not propaganda nonsense (that is my impression from the very quick overview). --Gligan (talk) 20:57, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
In fact what do your sources say about the objective of the Entente? Was it planned as a local engagement or it meant to be a decisive breakthrough? Because if the objective was the last, the result is at the least inconclusive. In any case I have to try finding Bulgarian sources because the article should have a relatively equal distribution of sources among the sides involved in the conflict but I don't have anything on that at home. I will search in the library of the university when I find time, until then you can put one possible results I have written in my previous message. --Gligan (talk) 18:50, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
For example, here on page 115-116 (unfortunately only in Bulgarian, above all with the old spelling) is said that the Bulgarians had to abandon Bitola but they have prevented the Entente from a breakthrough and the Bulgarian army took positions which were not taken until the battle of Dobro Pole in 1918. Nothing is mentioned about a defeat. It is written below, however, that it had a negative effect on the morale especially on the 8th division which suffered most of the casualties. So by reading that I would rather have the impression of inconclusive battle. On page 16 in the same book is written the positions of some divisions and regiments on the front and mentions 8th division as the one in the area of the battle. --Gligan (talk) 19:49, 24 January 2010 (UTC)

Entete or Franco-Serbian[edit]

Why on earth should it be a tactical "entete" victory when the only allied armies involved were the Serbian and the French ones? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Serbia123 (talkcontribs) 03:11, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

Why on earth would someone think they could put Decisive Serbian victory when, 1)there is no source present that states that, 2) the operation being conducted was by Brits, French, Italians and Serbs, 3)there IS a source that calls this battle an Allied victory. The Oxford illustrated history of the First World War, by Hew Strachan, p75, states it was an Allied victory. --Kansas Bear (talk) 03:50, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

But it wasn't an operation conducted by Brits and Italians. The only two armies that fought in the battle were the French and the Serbs. It makes no sense to include all the other allied nations. For example.

It doesn't says Entente victory it says French victory because the French were the only ones to participate from the Allied side on the battle. I just don't understand why we should use Entente when Serbian-French is a far more clear and accurate way to phrase it. Not to mention the battle of Dobro Pole where again it was exclusively the armies of France and Serbia that participated. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Serbia123 (talkcontribs) 18:32, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

Basically (as I read it): At Verdun, the French stood against the Germans on their own. This battle featured 2 Entente members vs. the Bulgarians. Jarkeld (talk) 18:48, 26 January 2010 (UTC)
The French victory at Verdun HAS a reference(The Encyclopedia Americana, Vol.28, (J.B.Lyon Company, 1920), 283.), which states it was a French victory. The reference for this battle states Allied victory. And as for the operation, I'd suggest Serbia123, re-read history. ".....both of which were recovered early in 1918 by a Franco-Italian force, and thus became the first step in the decisive campaign won in Serbia later in the season by Entente forces under General Louis Franchet d'Espèrey." -- History of the World War, by Halsey, p.264.

Exactly, if its only two (which you acknowledged) Entente members that fought against the Bulgarians then why should the entire Entente be credited for a victory only two members achieved? Its inaccurate and illogical. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Serbia123 (talkcontribs) 16:59, 27 January 2010 (UTC)

Where is your reference? --Kansas Bear (talk) 17:20, 27 January 2010 (UTC)

Article name[edit]

Do we have any sources which names this battle, or operation, specifically? I have found no sources supporting "Crna Bend" or "Crna Loop".--Zoupan 22:29, 24 February 2015 (UTC)

Richard Hall, "Balkan Breakthrough: The Battle of Dobro Pole 1918" names it battle of the Cherna Bend- [3]. --Avidius (talk) 07:29, 25 February 2015 (UTC)