Talk:Bosnian Crisis

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It aheadss that from the start, as I stumbled upon by googling the title, this page was lifted from a paper by a (Mount Holyoke) professor of PolySci. Despite the many minor changes by subsequent editors, it's essentially still that guy's work. So what happens? Do we just dl the whole thing? Sfahey 05:49, 10 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The article in question and various similar articles hosted there look like entries from a government publication from 1918. (Notice the oddly dated bit about how "complete information is not yet available" on the Serbia's capitulation.) That would make it public domain. It is somewhat bizarre - an article on the Bosnian Crisis that doesn't mention the secret negotiations between Russia and Austria-Hungary misses the point. Chris Johnson 03:13, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Ok, the article seemed to be a bit biased, so I did a bit of cleanup. But mainly, I added the secret negotiations between Austria-Hungary and Russia, which were one of the main aspects of the crisis.Marcos2006 22:44, 18 February 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Replace Article[edit]

Since this article was initially plagerized and since it is unfootnoted and based on out-of-date materials, I propose replacing it with the draft below. I ask for your comments.Werchovsky (talk) 05:14, 15 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Bosnian Crisis of 1908-1909, also known as the annexation crisis, erupted into public view when on October 5, 1908, Bulgaria declared its independence and on October 6, 1908, Austria-Hungary announced the annexation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Russia, the Ottoman Empire, Britain, Italy, Serbia, Montenegro, Germany and France took an interest in these events. In April 1909 the Treaty of Berlin was amended to accept the new status quo bringing the crisis to an end. The crisis permanently damaged relations between Austria-Hungary on the one hand and Russia and Serbia on the other. The annexation and reactions to the annexation are contributing causes of World War I.

The Buchlau Bargain[edit]

Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Sanjak of Novibazar

An exchange of letters[edit]

On July 2, 1908, Russian Foreign Minister Alexander Izvolsky wrote to Austro-Hungarian Foreign Minister Alois Aehrenthal and proposed a discussion of reciprocal changes to the 1878 Treaty of Berlin in favor of the Russian interest in the Straits of Constantinople and Austro-Hungarian interests in the annexation of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Sanjak of Novibazar, both of which were occupied by Austria-Hungary but under the official sovereignty of the Ottoman Empire. On July 14 Aehrenthal responded with guarded acceptance of the proposed discussion. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 195-6] After long and complex discussions within Austria-Hungary, Aehrenthal on September 10 outlined a slightly different bargain to Izvolsky. In exchange for a friendly Russian attitude in the event Austria-Hungary annexed Bosnia-Herzegovina, Austria-Hungary would then withdraw its troops from the Sanjak. The letter then went on to, as a separate matter, offer to discuss the Straits question on a friendly basis. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 201-2]

The meeting at Buchlau[edit]

On September 16, Izvolsky and Aehrenthal met face-to-face at Buchlau. No minutes were taken during these private meetings which lasted a total of six hours. Izvolsky accepted the responsibility to write up the conclusions of the meeting and forward them to Aehrenthal. On September 21 Aehrenthal wrote to Izvolsky asking for this document to which Izvolsky replied two days later that the document had been sent to the Czar for approval. This document, if it ever existed, has never been produced. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 201-2]

Aehrenthal’s version of the agreement[edit]

By Aehrenthal’s account given by Albertini, Izvolsky agreed that Russia would maintain “a friendly and benevolent attitude” if Austria-Hungary were to annex Bosnia-Herzegovina. Reciprocally, Austria-Hungary, should Russia move to open “the Straits to single ships of war” would maintain a benevolent attitude. The two agreed that a likely consequence of the annexation was Bulgaria would declare its independence from the Ottoman Empire. Austria-Hungary would offer no territorial concessions to Serbia or Montenegro, but if they supported the annexation then Austria-Hungary would not oppose Serbian expansion in the Balkans, and support the Russian demand to revise Article 29 of the Treaty of Berlin which restricted Montenegrin sovereignty. The parties agreed “these changes could receive sanction after negotiation with the Porte and the Powers.”, but “there would be not more talk of Bosnia-Herzegovina.” Annexation would probably take place at the beginning of October. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 206-7] The original of Aehrenthal’s account has not been found and so historian have had to make due with an undated office copy of the document. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 208]

Izvolsky’s version[edit]

On September 30, Austria-Hungary informed Izvolsky, who was in Paris at the time, that the annexation would take place on October 7. On October 4, Izvolsky prepared a report at the request of the British Ambassador to France, Bertie. Izvolsky stated that his position was that annexation was a matter to be settled between the signatories to the Treaty of Berlin. With the compensation of Austro-Hungarian withdrawal from the Sanjak of Novibazar, Russia would not consider the annexation as reason to go to war, but Russia and other governments would insist on changes to the Treaty favorable to themselves, including opening the Straights, Bulgarian independence, territorial concessions to Serbia, and abolition of restrictions on Montenegrin sovereignty under article 29. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 207-8] Bertie told British Foreign Minister Grey that he felt Izvolsky was not being completely honest.

The annexation[edit]

On October 5, Bulgaria declared its independence from the Ottoman Empire. On October 6, Emperor Franz Joseph announced to the people of Bosnia-Herzegovina his intention to give them an autonomous and constitutional regime and the provinces were annexed.[Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 218-9] On October 7, Austria-Hungary announced its withdrawal from the Sanjak of Novibazar. Bulgarian independence and the Bosnian annexation were not countenanced by the Treaty of Berlin and set off a flurry of diplomatic protests and discussions.

Protests and compensations[edit]


Serbia mobilized its army and on October 7 the Serbian Crown Council demanded that the annexation be reversed or, failing that, Serbia should receive compensation, which it defined on October 25 as a strip of land across the northern most portion of the Sanjak of Novibazar.[Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 222-3] In the end these demands were rejected, although Serbia later conquered the Sanjak.

Ottoman Empire[edit]

The Ottoman Empire protested Bulgaria’s declaration of independence with more vigor than the annexation of Bosnia-Herzegovina which it had no practical prospects of governing. A boycott of Austro-Hungarian goods however did occur, inflicting commercial losses on Austria-Hungary. On February 20, Austria-Hungary settled the matter and received Ottoman acquiescence to the annexation in return for ₤2.2 million. [Albertini, Vol. 1, p 277] Bulgarian independence could not be reversed.

France, Britain, Russia and Italy[edit]

The annexation and Bulgarian declaration were viewed as violations of the Treaty of Berlin. France, Britain, Russia and Italy therefore were in favor of a conference to consider the matter. German opposition and complex diplomatic maneuvering as to the location, nature and preconditions of the conference delayed and ultimately scuttled it. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 225-285] Instead, the Powers reached agreement on amendments to the Treaty through consultations between capitals.

Russia and Serbia back down[edit]

British opposition to amending the Treaty of Berlin with respects to the Straights left Russia with empty hands and therefore Izvolsky and the Czar regarded the annexation and Aehrenthal’s maneuvers as made in bad faith. To bring Izvolsky to heal, Austria-Hungary threatened to release and then ultimately began leaking documents in which over the course of the last 30 years, Russia had agreed that Austria-Hungary had a free hand to do as it liked with Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Sanjak of Novibazar. These documents were an embarrassment to Russia especially with regards to its relations with Serbia. The Czar wrote to Franz-Joseph and accused him of betraying a confidence and relations between the two countries were permanently damaged. Under Germany’s advice, Austria-Hungary kept in confidence the July 2 and September 23rd correspondence from Izvolsky to Aehrenthal and these were a continued threat to Izvolsky’s position if Russia did not firmly and publicly accept amendment of Article 25 of the Treaty of Berlin to accept the annexation. On March 22, Germany put Russia on the spot, demanding that Russia give a clear and unequivocal “yes” or “no” as to whether it committed to accept this amendment. Failure to give a positive reply would cause Germany to withdraw from the diplomatic discussions “and let things take their course”. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 285-6] Under such pressure, Izvolsky caved and advised the cabinet to accept the amendment of article 25 for fear that otherwise Austria would be free to act against Serbia and the cabinet agreed. On March 23 the Czar accepted the decision and communicated the decision to German Ambassador to Russia Portales. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 287] Britain however was not quite ready to acquiesce and stated they would do so only once “the Serbian question had been settled in a pacific manner, and France fell in line behind her.

On March 26, Austria-Hungary provided Britain with the negotiated text of Serbia’s March declaration committing Serbia to accept the annexation. The next day asked for Britain’s firm assurance that once the negotiations with Serbia were complete, Britain would accept the amendment of Article 25. Without such assurance Austria-Hungary stated it would break off negotiations with Serbia.[Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 289] Later that day Austria-Hungary decided to partially mobilize its armed forces. On March 28 Britain committed as requested. On March 31 Serbia made its formal declaration of acceptance to Austria-Hungary representing a complete Serbian climb down. The crisis was over. [Albertini, Vol. 1, pp 291-2]The Great Powers signed the amendments to the Treaty of Berlin in the various capitals from April 7 to April 19.

The Buchlau Bargain[edit]

I think the Buchlau Bargain deserves its own article. Any thoughts? Eguygabe 03:08, 18 March 2014 (UTC)

The caricature[edit]

"Advance of civilization in Bosnia and Herzegovina" I think the French text is even more funny: it means, "civilisation is marching on", i.e. it plays on three meanings of the expression "est en marche", the first and main of which being the military meaning, the second being the association with walking (obviously in jackboots), and only the third being the meaning of advancement. Is there a way to translate better this play on words in English? In French, it is really funny (though I am not a French). In English, I suppose, it's somewhat academical. Suggestions? - (talk) 13:17, 4 July 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]


The opening is actually a background. An opening is still needed, and the currently opening needs to be named background. --MorenaReka (talk) 17:52, 28 November 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Why there is not a single word about Croatian intellectuals who sought to unite Bosnia with the Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia-Dalmatia? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:01, 23 September 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Annexation date[edit]

The article says the annexation of Bosnia took place on 8 October, but there is no citation for that date. Searching Google Books, I found several conflicting dates.

So given that we can't seem to find any consistency here and absent a primary source, I think the best course of action is to remove the exact date and put in a footnote to show that the date varies among sources. howcheng {chat} 17:58, 4 October 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Second Bosnian Crisis[edit]

Wasn't the war from 1992-95 a crisis also? (talk) 14:22, 22 October 2018 (UTC) Second Bosnian Crisis?Reply[reply]

Requested move 19 July 2019[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review after discussing it on the closer's talk page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

The result of the move request was: Moved as proposed. An unopposed move request should always be performed. (non-admin closure) Red Slash 21:20, 27 July 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Bosnian crisisBosnian Crisis – I propose the move for consistency with other crisis-articles; however, moving it myself may be controversial. Vlad5250 (talk) 06:20, 19 July 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Could you give a couple examples? --Comment by Selfie City (talk about my contributions) 16:21, 19 July 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

"permanently" damaged relations[edit]

do Russia, Hungary etc really still hold a grudge about this today? (talk) 02:20, 6 October 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The states of Russia and Hungary are very different today - the article refers to the time. Both named countries have gone through several changes of government since 1908. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:40, 6 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]