Remains of Klu┼że, an Austro-Hungarian fortification between Bovec and Log pod Mangrtom. Photo: Wikipedia Public Domain.

100 Years Ago Today: the start of the First Battle of Isonzo

Posted on on 23 June 2015
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On June 23rd 1915, Italy began the First Battle of Isonzo by launching an offensive from northeast Italy across the border into Austria-Hungary.

It was the beginning of a seris of engagements, known as the Eleven Battles of Isonzo, the last of which ended in September 1917. A lot of the fighting took place in what is now Slovenia.

The Isonzo is a river on the boder between Italy and what was then the Austro-Hungarian empire - and stretches from the Julian Alps to the Adriatic Sea. In 1915, the river was on the Austro-Hungarian side of the border.

The Italians initially outnumbered the Austro-Hungarians, but suffered large casualties as they tried to attack well-fortified positions in the hills and mountains above the river.

The aim was to capture the Austro-Hungarian port of Trieste, but the Italian forces made little progress.

As Wikipedia puts it: "By the autumn of 1915 one mile had been won by Italian troops, and by October 1917 a few Austrian mountains and some square miles of land had changed hands several times. Italian troops did not reach the port of Trieste, the Italian General Luigi Cadorna's initial target, until after the Armistice".

Photo: Wikipedia Public Domain - see details.