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187 The Balkan League

As the Ottomans face war with Italy, another Albanian uprising, the resurgence of violence in Macedonia, and a coup, pressure mounts on the Balkan states to take advantage of their weakness. But overcoming their internal differences won't be easy.



Major Characters in this Episode

Tsar Ferdinand

Ivan Gueshov

Tsar Nicholas II

Todor Alexandrov


Timeline for this Episode

1911 Sept 29th - Italian-Turkish war erupts.

1911 Oct 15th - The 15th General assembly convenes.

1911 Oct 18th - ВМРО sends a memoir to the consoles of the Great Powers in Thessaloniki against the Ottomanisation of the population of the European vilayets.

1911 Dec 4th - First of the so called “donkey assassinations” in Shtip.

1911 throughout the year - Taxes paid by peasants significantly decrease.

Ford does an advertisement tour in Bulgaria with three cars.

1912, Jan - The Albanian Revolt of 1912 begins.

1912, Feb 29th - Bulgaria and Serbia sign an agreement including secret clauses regarding spheres of influence in European Turkey and the potential division of Macedonia, though much is left unclear and to be decided with Russian arbitration.

1912, Mar 13 - Bulgaria and Serbia sign an alliance.

1912, Apr 26-27th - The Agrarians hold a congress.

1912, Apr - Ottoman general election

1912, May 5th - VMRO leader Peter Toshev is assassinated.

1912, May 16 - Secret defensive alliance between Bulgaria and Greece is signed.

1912, June - Ottoman recognize Albanian autonomy.

1912, July 19th - VMRO assassination in Kochani leaves 9 dead. Ottoman reprisals leave another 40 dead and 250 injured, leading to increased anti-Ottoman feelings.

1912, July 17th - Military coup against the Young Turk government.

1912, mid-Aug - Oral agreement between Bulgaria and Montenegro for united action against the Ottomans. Bulgaria pays Montenegro 750,000 leva a month and in case of war resolves to financially support the Montenegrin army.

1912 Sep 15th - The Serbian government secretly instructs Serbian embassies to work on adding Ohrid and Prilep to Serbia despite the recent Bulgarian agreement allocating them to Bulgaria.

1912 Sep 17th - Bulgaria, Serbia, and Greece send an ultimatum to the Ottomans demanding they fulfill the Berlin Treaty and grant autonomy to its European territories. The Balkan militaries begin to mobilize.

1912 Sep 22nd - A secret military convention is added to the Bulgarian-Greek alliance

1912 Oct 8th - First Balkan War begins with Montenegro’s declaration of war

1912 Oct 18th - The Ottoman Empire refuses the ultimatum and declares war on Serbia and Bulgaria. Greece declares war on the Ottomans.


Italian troops fighting the Ottomans in Libya.
Italian troops fighting the Ottomans in Libya.

Italian airships bombing Ottoman positions.
Italian airships bombing Ottoman positions.


A car in Sofia in 1912.
A car in Sofia in 1912.

A Ford advertisement from 1911.
A Ford advertisement from 1911.

Ottoman officers who helped organize the 1912 coup.
Ottoman officers who helped organize the 1912 coup.

Albanian revolutionaries entering Skopje.
Albanian revolutionaries entering Skopje.

A map showing how Macedonia was to be divided, with Bulgaria set to recieve the portion south of the Green line and the striped area to be allocated with Russian arbitration.
A map showing how Macedonia was to be divided, with Bulgaria set to recieve the portion south of the Green line and the striped area to be allocated with Russian arbitration.

A poster promoting the Balkan League.
A poster promoting the Balkan League.


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