9780253343796

The Battle of the Otranto Straits: Controlling the Gateway to the Adriatic in World War I

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780253343796

  • ISBN10:

    0253343798

  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2004-05-01
  • Publisher: Indiana Univ Pr

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Summary

Called by some a "Mediterranean Jutland," the Battle of the Otranto Straits involved warships from Austria, Germany, Italy, Britain, and France. Although fought by light units with no dreadnoughts involved, Otranto was a battle in three dimensions -- engaging surface vessels, aircraft, and subsurface weapons (both submarines and mines). An attempt to halt the movement of submarines into the Adriatic using British drifters armed with nets and mines led to a raid by Austrian light cruisers. The Austrians inflicted heavy damage on the drifters, but Allied naval forces based at Brindisi cut off their withdrawal. The daylight hours saw a running battle, with the Austrians at considerable risk. Heavier Austrian units put out from Cattaro in support, and at the climactic moment the Allied light forces had to turn away, permitting the Austrians to escape. In the end, the Austrians had inflicted more damage than they suffered themselves. The Otranto action shows the difficulties of waging coalition warfare in which diplomatic and national jealousies override military efficiency.

Author Biography

Paul G. Halpern, Professor of History at Florida State University, is author of A Naval History of World War I; The Naval War in the Mediterranean, 1914--1918; The Mediterranean Naval Situation, 1908--1914; and Anton Haus: +ūsterreich-Ungarns Gro+ƒadmiral. He has served on the Council of the Navy Records Society (Great Britain) and is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations vii
Preface ix
ONE The Naval War in the Adriatic 1(13)
TWO The Allies in the Southern Adriatic 14(21)
THREE The Austrians Prepare an Attack 35(14)
FOUR The Attack on the Drifters 49(19)
FIVE The Pursuit 68(32)
SIX The Forces Return 100(23)
SEVEN The Results of the Battle 123(23)
Epilogue 146(5)
Appendix A. Glossary of Geographical Names 151(2)
Appendix B. Equivalent Ranks 153(2)
Notes 155(20)
Select Bibliography 175(6)
Index 181

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