VI. The World Wars and the Interwar Period, 1914–1945 > B. World War I, 1914–1918 > 4. The Balkan Situation, 1914–1915
  The Encyclopedia of World History.  2001.
4. The Balkan Situation, 1914–1915
The three Balkan states, Greece, Bulgaria, and Romania, all exhausted by the Balkan Wars of 1912–13 (See June 29–July 30), proclaimed neutrality at the beginning of the European conflict. The Russians entertained high hopes of securing the aid of Romania, which would have been an important factor in the Galician campaign. On various occasions (July 30, Sept. 16) they attempted to bait the Bucharest government with promises of Transylvania, but so long as King Carol lived (d. Oct. 10, 1914) there was no hope of Romanian intervention, since the king strongly regretted Romania's failure to side with its Austrian and German allies. King Ferdinand felt morally less bound, but the prime minister, Ion Bratianu (premier and foreign minister, Jan. 14, 1914–Feb. 6, 1918) was determined to drive a hard bargain.  1
1914, Dec. 6
Bratianu rejected Allied suggestions that Romania guarantee Greece against Bulgarian attack or make concessions in the Dobrudja to secure Bulgarian support.  2
1915, Jan. 25
Bratianu refused to join Greece in support of Serbia.  3
May 3
The Romanians asked not only for Transylvania, but also for part of Bukovina and the Banat.  4
The Russians were prepared to concede most of these demands, but Bratianu was then unwilling to act unless the Allies had 500,000 men in the Balkans and the Russians 200,000 in Bessarabia (Nov. 1915).  5
The POSITION OF BULGARIA became crucial after the entry of Turkey into the war in Nov. 1914.  6
The Encyclopedia of World History, Sixth edition. Peter N. Stearns, general editor. Copyright © 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Maps by Mary Reilly, copyright 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.