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Jacob Gould Schurman
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 74 pages of information about The Balkan Wars.

II

THE WAR BETWEEN THE ALLIES

The Treaty of London officially eliminated Turkey from the further settlement of the Balkan question.  Thanks to the good will of the Great Powers toward herself or to their rising jealousy of Bulgaria she was not stripped of her entire European possessions west of the Chataldja lines where the victorious Bulgarians had planted their standards.  The Enos-Midia frontier not only guaranteed to her a considerable portion of territory which the Bulgarians had occupied but extended her coast line, from the point where the Chataldja lines strike the Sea of Marmora, out through the Dardanelles and along the Aegean littoral to the mouth of the Maritza River.  To that extent the Great Powers may be said to have re-established the Turks once more in Europe from which they had been practically driven by the Balkan Allies and especially the Bulgarians.  All the rest of her European possessions, however, Turkey was forced to surrender either in trust to the Great Powers or absolutely to the Balkan Allies.

The great question now was how the Allies should divide among themselves the spoils of war.

RIVAL AMBITIONS OF THE ALLIES

This was a difficult matter to adjust.  Before the war began, as we have already seen, a Treaty of Partition had been negotiated between Bulgaria and Servia, but conditions had changed materially in the interval and Servia now demanded a revision of the treaty and refused to withdraw her troops from Central Macedonia, which the treaty had marked for reversion to Bulgaria.  In consequence the relations between the governments and peoples of Servia and Bulgaria were dangerously strained.  The Bulgarians denounced the Servians as perfidious and faithless and the Servians responded by excoriating the colossal greed and intolerance of the Bulgarians.  The immemorial mutual hatred of the two Slav nations was stirred to its lowest depths, and it boiled and sputtered like a witches’ cauldron.

In Eastern Macedonia Bulgarians and Greeks were each eagerly pushing their respective spheres of occupation without much regard to the rights or feeling of the other Ally.  Though the Bulgarians had not forgiven the Greeks for anticipating them in the capture of Saloniki in the month of November, the rivalry between them in the following winter and spring had for its stage the territory between the Struma and the Mesta Rivers—­and especially the quadrilateral marked by Kavala and Orphani on the coast and Seres and Drama on the line of railway from Saloniki to Adrianople.  They had one advantage over the Bulgarians:  their troops could be employed to secure extensions of territory for the Hellenic kingdom at a time when Bulgaria still needed the bulk of her forces to fight the Turks at Chataldja and Adrianople.  Hence the Greeks occupied towns in the district from which Bulgarian troops had been recalled.  Nor did they hesitate to dislodge scattered Bulgarian troops which their ally had left behind to establish a claim of occupation.  Naturally disputes arose between the military commanders and these led to repeated armed encounters.  On March 5 Greeks and Bulgarians fought at Nigrita as they subsequently fought at Pravishta, Leftera, Panghaion, and Anghista.

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