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Encyclopedia > Battle of Kolubara
Battle of Kolubara
Part of Serbian Campaign (World War I)
Date November 16 to December 15, 1914
Location Around Kolubara,
Ljig river,
Mount Suvobor,
Mount Maljen
and Mont Fruza
Result Decisive Serbian victory
Belligerents
Flag of Austria-Hungary Austria-Hungary Flag of Serbia Serbia
Commanders
General Oskar Potiorek,
Nicolas von Krìszèw
Marshal Radomir Putnik General Živojin Mišić
Strength
83,000 75,000
Casualties and losses
58,000 65,000

The Battle of Kolubara was a major battle in Balkans during World War I. It was fought between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. The Serbian army won the battle. Image File history File links Question_book-3. ... Combatants  Austria-Hungary Bulgaria  German Empire Serbia Montenegro Commanders Oskar Potiorek Nikola Zhekov Kliment Boyadzhiev Georgi Todorov Ivan Valkov August von Mackensen Radomir Putnik Živojin MiÅ¡ić Stepa Stepanović Petar Bojović Nicholas I The Serbian Campaign was fought from August 1914, when Austria-Hungary invaded Serbia at the outset of... is the 320th day of the year (321st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 349th day of the year (350th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ... Kolubara District within Central Serbia Kolubara District (Kolubarski okrug, Колубарски округ) The Kolubara District occupies the central part of western Serbia. ... Mount Maljen is a mountain in central Serbia that is well-known as a popular summer and winter resort. ... Austria-Hungary, also known as the Dual monarchy (or: the k. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Anthem: Bože Pravde [[Image:|250px|center|Location of the Kingdom of Serbia]] Capital Belgrade Largest city Belgrade Serbian Government Monarchy  - King Milan (1882-1889)  - King Aleksandar (1889-1903)  - King Peter I (1903-1918) Proclamation March 6, 1882 Area  - Total  km² ([[List of countries and outlying territories by area|]])  sq... Oskar Potiorek Oskar Potiorek (1853 – 1933) was an Austrian general who served as the Austro-Hungarian governor of Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1911 and 1914. ... Marshal Radomir Putnik Radomir Putnik, also known as Vojvoda Putnik, (Радомир Путник - Војвода Путник) (born January 24, 1847 in Kragujevac, died May 17, 1917) was a Serbian Field Marshal and Chief of General Staff in the Balkan Wars and the First World War, and took part in all wars that Serbia waged from 1876... Field Marshal Zivojin Misic (portrait by Uros Predic) Živojin MiÅ¡ić (Живојин Мишић) (1855-1921) was a Vojvoda (Field Marshal) and the most successful Serbian commander who participated in all Serbias wars from 1876 to 1918. ... Balkan redirects here. ... “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Austria-Hungary, also known as the Dual monarchy (or: the k. ... Not to be confused with Republika Srpska. ...

Contents

Background

After the Battle of the Drina, the Serbian army retreated to the right bank of the Kolubara river. The Serbian Army had 250,000 poorly equipped soldiers and the Austro-Hungarians had a well-equipped force of 280,000 men. On 16 November 1914, Austro-Hungarian Balkan Army group (5th and 6th Army), commanded by Field Marshal Oskar Potiorek, launched an attack across the river. Potiorek's goal was to gain control over the railroad that led from Obrenovac to Valjevo and to use it for supplying his troops instead of using muddy roads in Macva. The 5th Army, which held the northern part of the front, captured the town of Lazarevac which was held by the Serbian 2nd Army. In the south, parts of the 6th Army (15th and 16th Corps) attacked the 1st Serbian Army, captured Mount Maljen on 24 November, and put the Serbian left wing in a difficult situation. On 25 November, the 5th Army pushed back 2nd and 3rd Army, crossed the Ljig river and flanked the 1st Army. is the 320th day of the year (321st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ... Oskar Potiorek Oskar Potiorek (1853 – 1933) was an Austrian general who served as the Austro-Hungarian governor of Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1911 and 1914. ... Serbian Orthodox church Obrenovac (Обреновац) is a town and municipality located in Serbia at 44. ... Valjevo postcard Valjevo (Serbian Cyrillic: Ваљево) is a city located in Serbia and Montenegro at 44. ... Categories: Serbia and Montenegro geography stubs | Serbia ... Lazarevac (Лазаревац) is a city located in Serbia and Montenegro at 44. ... Mount Maljen is a mountain in central Serbia that is well-known as a popular summer and winter resort. ... is the 328th day of the year (329th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 329th day of the year (330th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Because the Serbian First Army was in difficult situation, its commander, General Zivojin Misic, wanted to abandon his current positions and retreat to the new position in front of Gornji Milanovac. His plan was to delay combat, rest his troops, and then launch a counteroffensive. However, Putnik didn't approve of the plan. He warned Misic that in that case other armies would also have to retreat, and Belgrade would have to be abandoned. But Misic firmly believed that his plan was the right one, and said to Putnik that the orders had already been given, and that he would not change them while he was in command. In the end, Putnik accepted his plan. The Serbian First Army (Serbian Prva Armija) was a Serbian field army that fought during World War I. Following the Austro-Hungarian invasion of Serbia, the First Army was put under the command of General Petar Bojović. It acted as a strathegic reserve in the area of Arandjelovac during the... Field Marshal Zivojin Misic (portrait by Uros Predic) Živojin Mišić (Живојин Мишић) was a Vojvoda (Field Marshal) and the most successful Serbian commander who participated in all Serbias wars from 1876 to 1918. ... Gornji Milanovac (Serb Cyrillic: Гoрњи Милановац) is a town and municipality located in Serbia at 44. ... For other uses, see Belgrade (disambiguation). ...

Operations in Serbia, November-December 1914
Operations in Serbia, November-December 1914

When Belgrade was abandoned, Potiorek made a new plan. He wanted to amass the entire 5th Army in the Belgrade region and annihilate the 2nd army which was on the right wing of the Serbian front. Then the 5th Army would turn to the south, get behind the enemy and force him to capitulate. But Potiorek underestimated the offensive capabilities of the 1st Army in south. He thought that this army was too tired and weakened to do more than hold and that it would do nothing while his forces were maneuvering.


Austro-Hungarian soldiers were very tired even before this maneuver began. While they were marching, Serbian troops were resting in their new positions. On the 2 December, Misic finished all preparations for an attack. Putnik ordered the attack of the entire Serbian army on 3 December. That was an ideal moment, because the largest Austro-Hungarian formation, the Combined Corps, was by then out of combat, marching north. is the 336th day of the year (337th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 337th day of the year (338th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Counterattack

On the 3 December, the 1st Army launched an attack against the surprised 16th Corps. The attack was supported by the Uzice army from the left wing. 16th Corps suffered heavy casualties and was pushed back. On the 4 December, 17th Corps tried to hold the advance of the 1st Army, but failed. Potiorek ordered an attack of the 5th Army so that he could complete his operation before the 6th army is defeated. However, the Combined Corps was still on its march. is the 338th day of the year (339th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


On the 5 December, 1st Serbian Army captured Mount Suvobor44°07′09″N 20°11′07″E / 44.11917, 20.18528 (Mount Suvobor), the main defensive position of the 6th Austrian Army. Meanwhile, the 3rd Serbian army had failed to push the 15th Corps off of Mount Rudnik, and Uzice army suffered heavy casualties. However, these formations pressured the Austro-Hungarian forces and helped the 1st Serbian Army to achieve a breakthrough. In the evening, Combined Corps arrived at its new position with very tired soldiers. is the 339th day of the year (340th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


On 6 December, Potiorek ordered the retreat of the 6th Army on the left bank of the Kolubara. Combined Corps finally attacked the 2nd Army, but the attack was easily stopped. The Combined Corps on the 8 December launched a major attack. but the 2nd Serbian Army managed to hold its position. Other units of the 5th Army were more successful, but it was too late. The 1st Serbian Army had captured Valjevo and was pushing north. Marshal Putnik reinforced the 2nd Serbian Army with fresh troops and ordered an attack before the Austro-Hungarians could fortify their positions. On 12 December, Stepanovic's 2nd Serbian Army attacked and defeated the 8th Corps. The 5th Army had to leave Belgrade and cross the Sava River on 15 December. The battle was over. is the 340th day of the year (341st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 342nd day of the year (343rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 346th day of the year (347th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses of this word, see Sava (disambiguation). ... is the 349th day of the year (350th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


The Serbian Army captured 43,000 enemy soldiers, and the number of Austro-Hungarian casualties was even greater. Misic was promoted to Vojvoda (Field Marshal), while the Austrian, Potiorek, was retired.


In 1914 the Austro-Hungarian Balkan Army Group lost around 227,000 men (out of a total of 450,000 engaged in the battles), while the Serbian army lost around 170,000 men (nearly its entire pre-war strength). Year 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ...


Results

Austria had taken massive losses and yet failed to conquer or defeat Serbia. Meanwhile it was under intense pressure from the powerful Russian army on its eastern frontier. Since Serbia did not really pose a threat to Austria, for the next 10 months the Austrians did nothing against Serbia and most of the forces in the area were transferred to the Italian front. Combatants Italy United Kingdom  France  Austria-Hungary  German Empire Commanders Armando Diaz Luigi Cadorna Lord Cavan Conrad von Hötzendorf Svetozar Boroević Otto von Below The Italian campaign refers to a series of battles fought between the armies of Austria-Hungary and Italy, along with their allies, in northern Italy...


On the other hand, although victorious, Serbian losses were even larger as a percentage of their army strength. Coupled with a terrible typhus epidemic that raged through the countryside during the winter, Serbia was content to stay on the defensive in 1915 and hope for increased Allied support. Sadly for Serbia, this support was to come too little and too late. For the unrelated disease caused by Salmonella typhi, see Typhoid fever. ...


References

  • Royal Family site in (Serbian) accessed 2008-04-03
  • Yugoslav Royal Family site in (English) accessed 2008-04-03

Further reading

  • Rickard, J. (2001-03-04). Battle of Kolubra, 3-9 December 1914. Retrieved on 2008-03-31.
  • John Keegan (1999). The First World War. Pimlico, 512. 
Year 2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday (link displays the 2001 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 63rd day of the year (64th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2008 (MMVIII) is the current year, a leap year that started on Tuesday of the Anno Domini (or common era), in accordance to the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 90th day of the year (91st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

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