Military Review

Victories of Yudenich's army near Trapezund and Erzincan

19
Trabzon operation (February 5 1916 — 15 April 1916)


After the capture of Erzerum, the Russian army continued the offensive. On the night of February 19, Russian troops stormed the fortified city of Bitlis by storm. Despite the stubborn resistance of the Turkish troops, who fought on artillery positions and on the streets of the city, the city was captured. Up to 1, thousands of people were taken prisoner, 20 guns, an artillery depot, 5 thousand rifles and significant food supplies became trophies of the Russian troops. The troops were commanded by the commander of the 2 Caucasian Cossack Division, Dmitry Abatsiyev, and the head of the Armenian volunteer formations, Andranik Ozanyan.

At the same time, the Russian Primorsky detachment, breaking through enemy positions on the rivers Arhava and Vitsesu, went to the distant approaches to the important sea trapeze Trapezund. The offensive of Russian troops along the seashore was supported by the fire of naval artillery of the Black Sea fleet.

The expeditionary force of Baratov went on the offensive. The raids of the Russian Cossacks seriously helped the British troops, who fought hard with the Turks in the south of Mesopotamia. Under the blow of the Russian cavalry, the Baghdad direction turned out to be, and the Ottoman command could not transfer troops from Mesopotamia to the Caucasian front.

Trapezund became a direct continuation of the Erzerum operation. It was conducted by the Primorsky Detachment (15 thousand people) under the command of Vladimir Lyakhov with the support of the Batumi naval base under the command of Captain 1-rank Rimsky-Korsakov. The Black Sea port of Trabzon was an important Turkish transport base, through which the 3 Army maintained contact with Istanbul. In addition, the capture of Trapezund facilitated the position of the right flank of the Caucasian army. At the beginning of April, the active phase of the operation began, the Primorsky detachment launched a methodical offensive, advancing with battles to 5 km per day, squeezing out Turkish troops. The enemy’s defense on the west bank of the Karadera River was broken through by the Black Sea Fleet — one battleship, two destroyers, two destroyers and several other ships fired. At the same time, the fleet landed troops in Rize and Hamurgian - two Kuban Plastun brigades with artillery (18 thousand people). The Turkish fleet could not prevent this operation. 5 April Trabzon took up without a fight. The city’s garrison ran across the surrounding mountains.

The capture of Trebizond significantly improved the supply of the right flank of the Russian army. It began to create a large army rear base. To protect it, the Platan fortified area was created. Two third-ranking infantry divisions formed near Mariupol were transferred there. Yudenich of them organized the 5th Caucasian Army Corps. As subsequent events showed, this was a timely measure ahead of the Turkish offensive. Yudenich was one of those generals who paid great attention to technical innovations (radio, aviation) The aviation detachment did not fail the Russian commander, the pilots discovered the movement of large forces of enemy infantry and cavalry.

Victories of Yudenich's army near Trapezund and Erzincan

Taken by Russian troops Trapezund in 1916 year.

Erzincan operation

The Ottoman command did not accept the defeat, and planned to take revenge, to return back lost Erzerum and Trebizond. Istanbul was preparing a powerful blow. The Turkish troops were significantly strengthened - from the 11 divisions they were brought to 24. To reinforce the 3 Army, the 5 and 12 Corps were transferred by sea, bringing its force to the 15 divisions. The army was led by Vehib Pasha. At the same time, on the right flank of the front, into the valley of the Euphrates, parts of the 2 Army Ahmet Izat Pasha (the Dardanelles winner) were transported along the Baghdad Railway. The 2 th army consisted of: 2 th, 3 th, 4 th and 16 th corps. However, the concentration of the 2 Army was slowed down by poor communications, the units had to go their own way 250-600 versts from unloading stations to concentration points.

3-I Turkish army had to go on the offensive in July on a wide front, Trebizond - Erzerum, and tie down Russian troops. The main blow inflicted 2-I army. She struck the junction between 1 and 4 in the Caucasian corps on Gassan-Kala, and then went to the rear of Erzerum from the southeast. The Ottoman command planned to repel Erzerum, and with great luck, surround and destroy the main forces of the Caucasian army. But Russian intelligence found the movement of the enemy troops. In addition, the defector declared himself - a major of the Turkish General Staff, Circassian by origin, who revealed the plans of the enemy, who provided a complete picture of the structure of the Turkish rear and the grouping of troops.

Before moving to the general offensive, Vehib Pasha conducted a local operation in the Ashkalinsky district. In late May, the Turkish troops recaptured Memahatun, eliminating Memahatun salient. Yudenich did not attach much importance to this, since Memahatun was busy contrary to the opinion of the commander of the Caucasian army, who considered such advancement to be incompatible with the forces of the army and the ability to supply advanced units. The 9 and 11 Turkish corps pushed the 4 Caucasian Rifle Division. Vehib Pasha decided to build on his success and move on, on the Erzurum direction. But Yudenich moved the 39 Infantry Division to the enemy. In the fierce battle of 21-23 in May, the “wonder-heroes” of the 39 division beat off the onslaught of the 5 enemy divisions and covered Erzerum. Thus, the 153 th Infantry Regiment of Baku, Colonel Maslovsky, stopped the strike of the 17 th and 28 th Turkish Infantry Divisions and two enemy cavalry divisions. The fighters of the regiment, shooting standing and from their knees, as if they were learning, put the enemies without an account, but they themselves suffered great losses - they lost an 21 officer and 900 lower ranks.

Yudenich, having learned about the plans of the enemy, decided to preempt the enemy, to launch his counterstrike in order to defeat the Vehib Pasha army before the 2 army was concentrated and offensive. In this area, the forces of the Russian Caucasian army reached the 180 battalions, the forces of the 3 Turkish army reached the 200 battalions, but the Russians were superior to the Ottomans in the strength of the battalions and artillery. The Turks were the first to launch an offensive - 13 June The 3-I army struck out with fresh 5-m and 12-m corps of the Liman-Soo valley in the Trabzon direction, planning to cut off Trabzon. However, the 5 Caucasian Corps was already holding the defense here. The Turks were able to wedge a little between the 5-m Caucasian (commander Vladimir Yablochkin) and the 2-m Turkestan (Mikhail Przhevalsky) corps, but they could not develop this breakthrough. Here the 19 Turkestan Regiment of Litvinov became an iron wall. For two days he held the blow of two divisions of the enemy, giving the command time to regroup. Of the 60 officers and the 3200 lower ranks of the 19, the Turkestan regiment missed the 43 commanders and the 2069 lower ranks. The regiment's fighters laid up 6 thousand Turks. The fierceness of the battle is evidenced by the fact that in hand-to-hand combat, the arrows raised the bayonets of the commander of the 10 Turkish division. By striking the 123 Infantry Division on the left flank of the Turks and the 3 th Plastun Brigade on the right flank, the enemy’s advance was stopped. The 490 Infantry Regiment of the Rzhevsky regiment seized the flag of the Combined Guards Turkish Regiment.

Having stopped the 5 th and 12 th Turkish corps on the Trapezund direction with the flank attacks of the 5 Caucasian and 2 of the Turkestan corps, Commander Yudenich himself launched an energetic offensive by the 1 Caucasian corps against the troops of the 9 and 11. at Memahatun (Mamahatuna). 23 Jun. The 39 Infantry Division again faced five Ottoman divisions. On the night of June 25, the Turkish group was defeated. June 27 was again occupied by Memahatun, and Turkish troops were driven far to the east. The 1 Caucasian Corps approached Erzincan. About 4 thousand prisoners were captured in this direction.

Yudenich decided to develop success and seize Erzincan - an important communication hub in Anatolia; the main rokadnaya line of the 3 Turkish army passed here. The 1 Caucasian Corps Kalitina was supposed to attack the Erzincan grouping — the 9 and 11 corps in the center. The 2 Turkestan Przhevalsky corps bypass the left flank of the Erzindzhan group, knocking down the Turkish NNXX th corps. The 10 Caucasian Corps Yablochkina provided the entire operation on the extreme right flank. His troops pursued the broken parts of the 5 of the Turkish corps. Turkish troops were defeated in these battles at Dzhivizlik, and then parts of the 5 Caucasian Corps seized the Foul on the Black Sea coast, and occupied Gumushhan.

The Turkestan Przhevalsky Corps shot down the 10 Corps with several blows and occupied the 2 of July Bayburt. More than 2 thousand people were captured in the battles near Bayburta. The Erzincan group was deeply enveloped from the left flank. The 1-th Caucasian Corps forced Kara-Su, defeated the 9-th and 11-th Turkish corps, and in July 10-X Infantry Division captured Erzincan.

As a result of the defensive and offensive actions of June-July 1916, the Russian Caucasian army once again defeated the Turkish army 3. Russian troops occupied Erzincan, about 17 thousand prisoners were taken. The army occupied the front line Fall - Kalkit - Erzincan - Kigi on this site, advancing the advance units somewhat forward of this line and seizing a number of profitable points. The Caucasian army was able to prevent the 3 and 2 Turkish armies from a joint strike. As the German General Liman von Sanders (head of the German military mission in the Ottoman Empire) wrote: “After the Russian cavalry broke through the front in two places, the retreat turned into a rout. Panicked, thousands of soldiers fled. So, the Russians warned the intentions of the Turkish command and inflicted a complete defeat on the 3 army until the end of the concentration of the 2 army. ”

Fighting on the Ognot direction - July 21 (August 3) - August 29 (September 11). Results of the 1916 campaign of the year

The successful Erzindzhan operation allowed Yudenich to transfer army reserves against the Turkish 2. The army of Ahmed Izeta-pasha is a more serious opponent than the 3 army that has already suffered several defeats. The morale of the army was high after its victories over the Anglo-French forces during the Dardanelles operation. The army was well armed, equipped, equipped with everything necessary. In particular, she even had mountain howitzers, which were not at all in the Caucasian army. Initially, it was composed of 7 divisions, then it was strengthened with new connections. The army of Izet-Pasha, advancing from Harput, deployed 4 divisions in the Ognot direction and 2 divisions in the Mush - Bitlis sector.

On July 21 (August 3), advance units launched an offensive by the 2 Army and attacked the extreme left flank of the 1 Caucasian Corps in the Kigi area. In the mountains, fierce fighting began again. Yudenich from the Erzurum area moved an army reserve by force to the 2 divisions, which, for better management, were already reduced during the march into the 6 Caucasian Corps under V. Lobachevsky. Russian troops clashed in a head-on battle with units of the 2 Army in the Ognot direction. Therefore, this battle, which lasted a whole month, received the name of the Ognot battles.

Turkish troops could not penetrate deep into the Russian defense. Up to the end of August there were stubborn fights. The right wing of the Turkish army 2, after knocking down the advanced parts of the 4 Caucasian corps, started a battle at the Mus-Bitlis front and, receiving reinforcements, forced the Russians to withdraw from this line. However, on August 24, Russian troops recaptured Mush. At the end of August, the Russian troops defeated the 2 of the Turkish corps near Ognot, especially the 30 and 12 divisions suffered great losses. As a result, Russian troops thwarted the 2 th army and forced the enemy to go on the defensive. The fresh 2 Turkish army, seriously surpassing the Russian forces against it and possessing the offensive initiative, could not achieve its goal. The Ottomans at the cost of large losses were able to capture only Bitlis, while the front position on the rest of the southern sector remained almost unchanged. Therefore, it must be admitted that success on this section of the front remained with the Russian army. In the course of this battle, the Turks lost up to 60 thousand people, the Russians - about 20 thousand.

The 3-I Turkish army, defeated during the Erzincan operation, was not able to provide substantial assistance to the 2-th army. And its offensive could put the Caucasian army in a difficult position, forced in this case to fight in the absence of a reserve, also in the western direction. In mid-August, the 3 Army received reinforcements, and tried to launch a local operation west of Gumushhan, but here all the Ottoman attacks were repelled. On August 30, the Turks were able to penetrate the front in a small area with a surprise attack in the area south of Kalkit, but the next day they eliminated the breakthrough. Another blow by the Turkish troops in the area west of Kalkit was also beaten off.

Soon there was a pause at the front. By the beginning of September 1916, the Caucasian Front had stabilized at the turn of Elleu, Erzincan, Ognot, Bitlis and Lake Van. Both sides have exhausted their offensive capabilities. The high command of the front proposed to launch an offensive against Sivas, but the command of the army, supported by the corps commanders of the western sector, came out against this idea. The main reason for the reluctance to launch a new offensive was the problem with the supply of troops. Despite the construction of the 1916 during the summer on the main directions of narrow-gauge and equilateral railways, the supply was a significant problem, which intensified with the onset of the Russian troops. The mountain region was limited in food resources and could not feed the army. Lack of resources was aggravated by the growth of diseases, and typhoid and scurvy claimed many lives. In addition, the problem of shortage of firewood was added, the army occupied vast treeless areas in the midst of snow-capped mountains. The 4 Caucasian Army Corps suffered especially. Sanitary losses were higher than combat.

The results of the 1916 campaign of the year on the Caucasian front exceeded all expectations of the Stavka, the Russian army under Yudenich seriously advanced deep into the Ottoman Empire. The Caucasian army defeated the enemy in a series of battles, seized the most important and largest cities of the region - Erzerum, Trabzon, Van and Erzincan. The Turkish summer offensive was disrupted during the Erzincan operation and the Ognot fights. The main task of the army, which was set at the beginning of the First World War, was solved - the Russian Transcaucasus was reliably protected. In the occupied territories, a temporary governor-general of Turkish Armenia was established, directly subordinate to the command of the Caucasian army. Already in 1916, the Russians began the economic development of the region by building several railways. By the beginning of 1917, the Russian Caucasian Army was the undisputed winner, despite the fierce resistance of the Turkish troops, difficult environmental conditions, diseases and difficulties with the replenishment of troops.



To be continued ...
Author:
Articles from this series:
"Only he is worthy of this life, who is always ready to die." One of the best generals of Russia during the First World War, Nikolai Nikolayevich Yudenich
Strategic victory for the army of Yudenich near Erzurum
Victories of Yudenich's army near Trapezund and Erzincan
Removal from command of the Caucasian front. Yudenich's army march to red Petrograd
19 comments
Information
Dear reader, to leave comments on the publication, you must to register.

I have an account? Sign in

  1. aszzz888
    aszzz888 14 October 2013 09: 23
    +4
    A competent commander and strategist.
    1. duke
      duke 14 October 2013 15: 07
      +2
      Ilyich, I gave such victories, no, I gave Ataturk ... And Budyonny planned operations against the Greeks
      1. smersh70
        smersh70 14 October 2013 15: 47
        -1
        Quote: duke
        Ilyich, I gave such victories

        firstly, and here Ilyich smile the front fell apart during Kerensky ... and huge trains with troops began to grow back home ... the peasants in the bulk did not want to fight ....
        Quote: duke
        no - gave Ataturk

        but he gave weapons in isolation ... and did the right thing ... saving first of all Russia. because the enemies at that time and Ataturkai Ilyich were the same .... and thanks to Ilyich Russia right now has the borders that Ilyich won back !!!!! (Poland and Finland do not count)
        1. bomg.77
          bomg.77 14 October 2013 16: 31
          0
          Quote: smersh70
          .and thanks to Ilyich Russia right now has the borders that Ilyich won back !!!!! (Poland and Finland do not count)
          Smersh, are you serious?))
          1. smersh70
            smersh70 14 October 2013 17: 41
            -3
            Quote: bomg.77
            Smersh, are you serious?))


            and what is not chtoli .... it is in the main borders after the 17 year. Ilyich is the founder of the Russian state ... not the monarchy, but the state ... I emphasize ... as Markov said in the 1924 year ... (you know who he is) ..... in one of his speeches he said - I hate Lenin and fought with him to the end .... but I raise a toast for him! It was he who gathered Russia together again and thanks to him Russia regained its historical borders .....
            1. bomg.77
              bomg.77 14 October 2013 19: 50
              +2
              Quote: smersh70

              and what is not chtoli .... it is in the main borders after the 17 year. Ilyich is the founder of the Russian state ... not the monarchy, but the state ... I emphasize ... as Markov said in the 1924 year ... (you know who he is) ..... in one of his speeches he said - I hate Lenin and fought with him to the end .... but I raise a toast for him! It was he who gathered Russia together again and thanks to him Russia regained its historical borders .....
              So seriously ((
  2. Gari
    Gari 14 October 2013 10: 25
    +3
    Head of Armenian volunteer groups Andranik Ozanyan.
    General of the Russian Army
    people lovingly called him "mountain eagle"
    Andranik considered the unification of the oppressed peoples a real force to achieve this goal. His life credo was the preservation of the nation, so he connected the fate of the Armenian and other Orthodox peoples with Russia.
    In the difficult days of the civil war, when Russia was in a catastrophic situation, General Andranik spoke with confidence about its future:

    "He will recover, stand on his feet, and a new, great and invincible Russia will appear, as it has never been before." And today his words remain relevant: "It hurts me when you think that Russia has disintegrated, put to death by strife ... A 150 millionth, healthy people with rich potential cannot die, he is alive."

    The decree “On Turkish Armenia”, in which Russia granted the Armenian people the right to self-determination, Andranik called an expression of justice and political honesty. The general expressed the attitude of Armenians to Russia in an interview with the Mshak newspaper: "Any actions directed against Russia are alien to our people, our knightly spirit, our moral ideals."
    A convinced adherent of the Russian orientation, he represented the future of the Caucasus only in alliance with Russia, urging the Russians to follow the traditions of their fathers and grandfathers (after all, it was not for nothing that they shed blood on the Caucasus Mountains and lost more than 800 thousand of their soldiers there!): “In the Caucasus, the all-Russian statehood".
    1. Klibanophoros
      Klibanophoros 14 October 2013 11: 04
      +1
      800 thousand soldiers? Ummm whatooooooo?
      1. smersh70
        smersh70 14 October 2013 15: 50
        -1
        Quote: Klibanophoros
        800 thousand soldiers?

        Yes, he is shas and about a million as a spirit says laughing
        Quote: Klibanophoros
        he represented the future of the Caucasus only in alliance with Russia

        only please, Harry, don’t speak for the whole Caucasus ... that the one-ear has cut the whole Caucasus to speak for the whole region .. tell me that the future of the Armenians .. it will be more plausible .... though he didn’t have the authority to speak .. .By the way, the party of dpschnaks just thought the other way around .. well, this is a completely different story ....
  3. Dmitry 2246
    Dmitry 2246 14 October 2013 11: 12
    +1
    Great victories and great achievements.
  4. mamba
    mamba 14 October 2013 12: 44
    +1
    Thanks to the author of the article for interesting historical material. No wonder Yudenich is considered one of the best generals of the Russian imperial army. It is a pity that all the victories in the Caucasus and all the sacrifices made by Russia were depreciated by the Great Troubles, in which the general was unlucky.
  5. berserk1967
    berserk1967 14 October 2013 12: 53
    +4
    Just listen to what names: Yudenich, Przhevalsky, Litvinov. This is all the history of the Russian state, and this cannot be forgotten.
    1. washi
      washi 14 October 2013 13: 06
      +2
      Quote: berserk1967
      Just listen to what names: Yudenich, Przhevalsky, Litvinov. This is all the history of the Russian state, and this cannot be forgotten.

      It is not necessary to forget not only them, but also those who brought to power the Provisional Government, which destroyed not only the army, but also the state (the Ukrainian parliament was created during the temporary ones) and because of which we lost the gains of our victories. Those who provoked the Civil War and occupied Our territory during its time. Those who created separate states on our territory in Versailles 1918.
    2. bomg.77
      bomg.77 14 October 2013 17: 04
      0
      Quote: berserk1967
      Just listen to what names: Yudenich, Przhevalsky, Litvinov. This is all the history of the Russian state, and this cannot be forgotten.
      Personalities! People who made history. I’m reading and thinking, but during the time of Yeltsin and Gorbachev, were there such people?
      1. chehywed
        chehywed 15 October 2013 00: 35
        +1
        Quote: bomg.77
        .I’m reading and thinking, but during the time of Yeltsin and Gorbachev, were there such people?

        There were, yes, I’m sure now there are, honest, noble, but not of such a scale. If such people were then, it wouldn't be "during the time of Yeltsin and Gorbachev".hi
  6. Vlaleks48
    Vlaleks48 14 October 2013 20: 03
    0
    Thanks to the author!
    At all times, only people were the main wealth and pride of Russia! Glory to the Russian soldier and warrior! This is exactly what prevented the Saxons and the "group of comrades" who had arrived from the states (Leva Bronstein and other small-town ones) and brazenly, and as a result we have what we have!
  7. George
    George 14 October 2013 21: 26
    0
    Thank you for continuing.
  8. Voskepar
    Voskepar 15 October 2013 00: 27
    +2
    Quote: smersh70
    Quote: Klibanophoros
    800 thousand soldiers?

    Yes, he is shas and about a million as a spirit says laughing
    Quote: Klibanophoros
    he represented the future of the Caucasus only in alliance with Russia

    only please, Harry, don’t speak for the whole Caucasus ... that the one-ear has cut the whole Caucasus to speak for the whole region .. tell me that the future of the Armenians .. it will be more plausible .... though he didn’t have the authority to speak .. .By the way, the party of dpschnaks just thought the other way around .. well, this is a completely different story ....

    To cyberskarams like you are just a doc. the frames will help. But I also doubt it, because instead of your brains you have a fat tail:
    1. ayyildiz
      ayyildiz 15 October 2013 00: 36
      0
      And are you proud of this video? This video once again proves your level!
    2. wk-083
      wk-083 16 October 2013 01: 02
      -1
      Fucking MONKEYS!
  9. Voskepar
    Voskepar 15 October 2013 10: 45
    -1
    Quote: ayyildiz
    And are you proud of this video? This video once again proves your level!

    I speak with you at your level. Otherwise, you do not understand.
    For this hollow ball, I put photos of General Andranik in the first part of this article so that he just don’t hurt .. but you can see the myths of azagitprop so deeply penetrated your brains that at least show you, you will repeat your myths.
  10. Voskepar
    Voskepar 15 October 2013 10: 45
    -1
    Quote: ayyildiz
    And are you proud of this video? This video once again proves your level!

    I speak with you at your level. Otherwise, you do not understand.
    For this hollow ball, I put photos of General Andranik in the first part of this article, so that he just .............., but you can see the myths of azagitprop so deeply penetrated your brains that at least show you, you you will repeat your myths.
  11. wk-083
    wk-083 16 October 2013 01: 08
    0
    Such articles are really nice to read. I am proud of the Fatherland!