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The Allied Campaigns in the Dardanelles and Gallipoli

Guns of the one of the Turkish forts guarding the Dardanelles firing on the Anglo-French fleet. The first naval assault was on February 19, 1915, the major and final attack on March 18.  The fort, and the lighthouse in the distance (likely that at Kum Kale) are on the southern, Asian side of the Dardanelles. The hills on the northern, European side of the strait are on the Gallipoli Peninsula. From a painting by Willy Stoewer.
Text:
Kampf der türkischen Dardanellenforts gegen die vereinigte englisch-französische Flotte.
Battle of the Turkish Dardanelles forts against the combined Anglo-French fleet.
A 128 E.P. & C . . .? Signed, bottom right.

Guns of the one of the Turkish forts guarding the Dardanelles firing on the Anglo-French fleet. The first naval assault was on February 19, 1915, the major and final attack on March 18. The fort, and the lighthouse in the distance (likely that at Kum Kale) are on the southern, Asian side of the Dardanelles. The hills on the northern, European side of the strait are on the Gallipoli Peninsula. From a painting by Willy Stoewer.

Image text

Kampf der türkischen Dardanellenforts gegen die vereinigte englisch-französische Flotte.



Battle of the Turkish Dardanelles forts against the combined Anglo-French fleet.



A 128 E.P. & C . . .? Signed, bottom right.

Other views: Larger

Turkey's entry into the war on the side of Germany and Austria-Hungary closed the sea link between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean and isolated Russia from its western allies. It also threatened the Suez Canal, critical to Britain's communication with India and Mesopotamia.

Stalemated on the Western Front at the beginning of 1915, some in Britain and France looked to strike Germany's allies and to bring neutral nations into the war against the Central Powers. The Balkan countries of Greece, Romania, and Bulgaria had battle-hardened standing armies and bordered the Entente ally Serbia.

Serbia had defeated three Austro-Hungarian offensives in 1914, but its allies had limited means to supply it. Plans to support Serbia included landings on Austria-Hungary's Dalmatian Coast and in Greece or Bulgaria.

Weakest of the Central Powers, Turkey seemed the most susceptible to being knocked out of the war. Seizing the Turkish capital of Constantinople in offensives launched from Salonika in Greece or the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey might encourage neutral Balkan nations to join the Entente Allies. Replacing the Turkish government might bring the country to the Allied side or leave it neutral, reopening access to Russia.

Within the British and French governments there was support for an invasion of Turkey, but also for a purely naval attempt to "force the strait", to send a naval force to disable the forts along the Dardanelles then continue to Constantinople to seize the capital. Naval attacks on February 19 and March 18 failed, giving those who favored an invasion the upper hand. Planning for the invasion of Gallipoli began.

1915-02-19

1916-01-09

More about The Allied Campaigns in the Dardanelles and Gallipoli:

The Dardanelles and Gallipoli Campaigns

Events within The Allied Campaigns in the Dardanelles and Gallipoli (2)

Click to View Start Date End Date
The Allied naval campaign in the Dardanelles 1915-02-19 1915-03-18
Gallipoli Campaign 1915-04-25 1916-01-09