Kosta Pećanac - World War I

World War I

Following the disastrous end to the Serbian campaign in late 1915, Pećanac escaped to Corfu along with the retreating Serbian army and government, and ultimately joined the Salonika front. In 1915, Pećanac had received various medals for his "merit in fighting" including three gold medals for bravery, one for military virtue, and the Order of the Karađorđe's Star (4th Class) for his service in World War I and possibly also for his prior military feats. In September 1916, the Serbian high command sent then Lieutenant Pećanac by air to Mehane (south-west of Niš in the Toplica region) to prepare a guerrilla uprising in support of a planned Allied offensive. There, Pećanac contacted several groups of guerrillas, known as comitadji. Pećanac joined forces with local leader Kosta Vojinović and they both established headquarters on Mount Kopaonik. Rivalry quickly developed between the two leaders, mainly because Pećanac only had orders to prepare to support the planned Allied offensive, but Vojinović was conducting operations that might result in pre-emptive action by the Bulgarian occupation forces. Matters came to a head in January – February 1917 when the Bulgarians began conscripting local Serbs for military service. At a meeting of guerrilla leaders to discuss whether they should commence a general uprising, Pećanac was outvoted. However, events had overtaken the leaders, and they were essentially joining a popular uprising that was already underway. After guerrillas under Pećanac's command engaged the Bulgarians he was hailed as a leader of the resistance, although he had serious reservations about the eventual outcome once the Bulgarians and Austro-Hungarians committed large numbers of troops to subdue the uprising. The guerrillas were closing on Niš in early March when the occupying forces went on the offensive. Pećanac advised his fighters to hide out in the woods and mountains, while Vojinović ordered his to fight to the death. By 25 March, the uprising had been crushed.

In April 1917, Pećanac re-emerged with his guerrillas, attacking a railway station, destroying a bridge and raiding a Bulgarian village on the border. Pećanac avoided a further offensive by the occupation forces in July by disappearing into the mountains once again. After emerging for a short time, in September – October 1917 Pećanac again dispersed his guerrillas and infiltrated the Austro-Hungarian occupied zone where he remained in hiding until mid-1918.

Between the two World Wars he was the most prominent figure in the Chetnik movement, and also had a leading role in the Association against Bulgarian Bandits, a notorious organisation that arbitrarily terrorised Bulgarians in the Štip region. In 1932, he became the president of the Chetnik Association. By opening membership of the Chetnik Association to new younger members that had not served in World War I, he grew the organisation during the 1930s from a nationalist veterans' association focused on protecting veterans' rights to an aggressively partisan Serb political organisation which reached 500,000 members throughout the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. During this period, Pećanac formed close ties with the far-right Yugoslav Radical Union government of Milan Stojadinović, and was known for his hostility to the Yugoslav Communist Party, which made him popular with conservatives such as the Yugoslav Radical Union.

Read more about this topic:  Kosta Pećanac

Other articles related to "world war i, war, world war":

East Hampton (town), New York - History - American Civil War - World War I
... During World War I, the E.W ... Bliss Company of Brooklyn, New York tested torpedoes in the harbor, a half mile north of Sag Harbor ...
World War I - Legacy - Economic Effects
... One of the most dramatic effects of the war was the expansion of governmental powers and responsibilities in Britain, France, the United States, and the Dominions of the British Empire ... and laws enacted, all designed to bolster the war effort many have lasted to this day ... Similarly, the war strained the abilities of some formerly large and bureaucratised governments, such as in Austria–Hungary and Germany however, any analysis of the long-term effects were clouded by the ...
HMS Triumph (1903) - Construction and Service - World War I
... Upon completion of her refit in January 1915, Triumph was transferred to the Dardanelles for service in the Dardanelles Campaign ... The ship departed Hong Kong on 12 January and stopped at Suez from 7 February to 12 February before moving on to join the Dardanelles Squadron ...
USS Arethusa (AO-7) - World War I
... Arethusa reached the Azores on the 27th and, but for a quick run to Bermuda and back in mid-May, operated there until returning to New York on 10 June ... On 28 June, she began another mid-Atlantic deployment which took her twice to Bermuda and once to the Azores before she refilled her tanks at Port Arthur, Texas for another cargo of fuel oil which she once more issued in the Azores and at Bermuda before putting in at New York on 22 December, one month and 11 days after the signing of the Armistice stopped the fighting of World War I ...
Gretna, Scotland - History - World War I
... Firth to supply ammunition to British forces during World War I ... The State Management Scheme persisted for many years after the First World War was long over and the munitions factories dismantled ...

Famous quotes containing the words war and/or world:

    Peace to the shacks! War on the palaces!
    Georg Büchner (1813–1837)

    Whilst all the world is in pursuit of power, culture corrects the theory of success.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)