Balkan Wars

(redirected from Balkans war)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

Balkan Wars,

1912–13, two short wars, fought for the possession of the European territories of the Ottoman Empire. The outbreak of the Italo-Turkish War for the possession of Tripoli (1911) encouraged the Balkan states to increase their territory at Turkish expense. Serbia and Bulgaria accordingly concluded (1912), with the aid of Russian secret diplomacy, a treaty of alliance. In a secret annex, the treaty provided for joint military action and the division of prospective conquests. The outbreak of the war (Oct., 1912), in which Greece and Montenegro joined the original allies, was followed by the speedy expulsion of the Turks from all of European Turkey, except the Constantinople area. After the conclusion of hostilities Serbia showed intentions of annexing a large part of Albania, in order to gain an outlet on the Adriatic, but this step toward a "Greater Serbia" was opposed by Austria-Hungary and Italy and by the Albanians, who had proclaimed their independence. Conferences of the ambassadors of the Great Powers at London created (1913) an independent Albania of fair size, thus cutting Serbia off from the sea. Dissatisfied with these terms, Serbia demanded of Bulgaria a greater share of Macedonia. Bulgaria thereupon attacked (June, 1913) Serbia, only to be attacked by Romania, Greece, and Turkey. As a result of this Second Balkan War, Bulgaria lost territory to all her enemies by the Treaty of Bucharest (Aug., 1913). The Balkan Wars prepared the way for World War I by satisfying some of the aspirations of Serbia and thereby giving a great impetus to the Serbian desire to annex parts of Austria-Hungary; by alarming Austria and stiffening Austrian resolution to crush Serbia; and by giving causes of dissatisfaction to Bulgaria and Turkey.


See G. Young, Nationalism and War in the Near East (1915, repr. 1970); E. C. Helmreich, The Diplomacy of the Balkan Wars, 1912–1913 (1938, repr. 1969).

References in periodicals archive ?
When British forces went into action in the Balkans war, he used a party political broadcast to describe the NATO air strike on Kosovo as "misguided" and "an act of unpardonable folly".
The Government came under mounting pressure from NATO allies over the issue of Balkans War Syndrome yesterday.
A MAN who broke into a journalist's home and assaulted him, claiming he would be killed as revenge for the Balkans War, was fined pounds 16,000 at Dublin Criminal Court yesterday.
Visar has been wasting away for more than a year, surviving on his mother's milk, because the Balkans war has created a lack of skilled surgeons at home.
Prince, another victim in the Balkans war, was left in a tiny cage chewing his hind paws in distress.
A CHARITY yesterday launched a battle to save Prince, the tiger victim of the Balkans war.
A PARAMILITARY Serb named as Dragisa Peric was being interrogated by military police in Kosovo last night - the first suspect to be arrested for an atrocity in the Balkans war.
AN SAS soldier has become the first British casualty of the Balkans war.
On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Peace Treaty of Bucharest, in the Republic of Macedonia and a number of Balkan countries scholarly gatherings took place at which different views of the goals and character of the Balkans Wars and the Treaty of Bucharest were presented.