Monday, September 29, 2014

The Battle of the River Neretva

Today I will show you a historical monument of an important World War II Battle that went on in these regions. In World War II, the so called Case White, also known as the Fourth Enemy Offensive, was a combined Axis strategic offensive launched against the Yugoslav Partisans (The National Liberation Army of Yugoslavia).

Since its final stage took place on the Neretva River, the operation was known in Yugoslavia as the Battle of the Neretva, or as the Battle for the Wounded. In today's post we will visit one of the most important places of this battle, which nowadays is a national monument.

click on the images for a bigger view

The site is located in the town Jablanica.



A sign welcoming you to the monument.


A memorial museum has also been built here. It houses many important artifacts from Yugoslavia and the World War II period.



The battle that was being held here was one of the most significant confrontations of World War II in Yugoslavia.


The Axis (nations that fought in the World War II against the Allied forces) operation prompted the Partisans, with Tito in the lead, for the drive toward eastern Herzegovina.


In order to do this, Tito formed the so-called Main Operational Group, which eventually succeeded in forcing its way across the Neretva in mid-March 1943, after a series of dramatic battles with various hostile formations.



"We shall not leave the wounded behind" - Tito


In the last days of February 1943, Tito's Main Operational Group found itself in a critical position with no open road remaining.


Tito took the tactical command in his hands.


He ordered the Pioneer Company to destroy all the bridges across Neretva, which was done between 1 and 4 March. 


 In order to see the most important part of this post, I had to cross the relatively new bridge.


The bridge had been destroyed so that enemy forces couldn't pass through.


By the end of March, the Germans claimed to had killed about 11,915 Partisans, executed 616, and captured 2,506. Despite these heavy losses and a tactical victory for the Axis powers, the partisan formations secured their command.

You can spot the white bunker on the other side. This is where enemy forces were attacked.


The next major World War II operation in Yugoslavia was Case Black.


Thanks for stopping by.
This here is a very condensed version of the whole tactical procedures.

It's a very interesting story. Even a Academy Award Nominated movie has been made about this. I hope I evoked some interest in the happenings here.

42 comments:

  1. koliko puta sam ovuda prošla, nikada nisam stala i razgledala...nekako kada se približim konjicu onda jedva čekam stići u njega :)
    hvala za ove lijepe slike....

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  2. The last image is my favourite - so dramatic!!!

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  3. Hello Mersad,

    War is so sad; we must remember. Thanks for making Blue Monday special.

    I'm looking forward to reading your comment on my blue shopping post. Please come back.

    Have a Beautiful Blue Monday!

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  4. The Second World War was such a cruel time in Europe. I wish humans would learn...but so far we keep on making the same mistakes!

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  5. It's such a beautiful area where so many sad things happened. Your shots of the entire area and commentary are fabulous. I love the shots of the old train.

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  6. this was the year before I was born, my mom and dad got married that year.. and i can't believe the bridge is still dangling there for over 70 years... the old steam engine is just beautiful to me. i love the one that shows it perched on the bluff, like it came accross the bridge and it fell behind it and left it there.. the old bridges were more attractive than the new and improved bridges.. i like the moss on the engine to...

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  7. Very informative post- thank you for sharing all these photos that I will never get to see in person. Have a wonderful week!

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  8. destroying the bridges to save lives and territory. tough part of history for that area.

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  9. Fantastic photos! Interesting post.

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  10. Terrific series...enjoyed my visit♪ http://lauriekazmierczak.com/tall-silos/

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  11. Great post/photos for the day, Mersad, and so much sad history!! Like others I keep wondering when we will learn??? Thanks as always for sharing!!

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  12. War is so painful and destructive ... these are heart rendering reminders of a time we all wish had never happened. But it is our responsibility to learn from history, so I am greatful for these beautiful shots and reminders. Sad that man hasn't learned a better way to settle their differences as we are still embroiled in war after war. Thank you, Mersad

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  13. Such evocative and poignant places are battle sites.

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  14. Beautiful series, Mersad!

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  15. Super series of photos, Mersad, and a very interesting post. I really like the last two photos a lot: very poignant.

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  16. Great shots, Mersad. I think Yul Brynner was in the movie. I especially love the way mountains look in the background.

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  17. it's like time stands still there, with the broken bridge and the train stopped on its tracks...

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  18. Die nahe Bilder mit dem Lokomotiv schauen super aus. Aber der Rest lässt man an den Krieg erinnern. Traurig...aber wahr...danke fürs Zeigen. Liebe Grüße

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  19. The broken bridge is so dramatic. And the train has a sense of lonely drama too. So much sorrow and grief in such scenic countryside. Fascoinating post.

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  20. Ich finde solche Zeitzeugen der Vergangenheit auch immer interesant, und gerade hier auch klasse dass sie die alte Brücke nicht abtransportiert haben. So sollten solche Dinge doch eigentlich eine Warnung sein wie schrecklich diese Weltkriege waren. Leider gibt es immer noch Menschen die das nicht kapieren.

    Klasse Fotos hast du davon mitgebracht. Danke dir fürs Zeigen.

    Liebe Grüssle

    N☼va

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  21. This is a fantastic post of photos telling this sad story The broken bridge is very dramatic and poignant.

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  22. It was a dreadful war. Years later hubby and I visited Yugoslavia, when it was still known by that name. . There where reminders of Tito, including Tito's Palace which we visited a few times. I agree with others that the broken bridge is a dramatic picture.

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  23. Dear Mersad - The town Jablanica looks so beautiful and peaceful that I wouldn’t believe the past battles without the knowledge of history or war monuments including the destroyed bridge. I’ve learned Yugoslavia was one till Tito’s death under his leadership despite various different tribes and races. I think, in general, people can get organized and cooperate when they see the same direction but can break up when they see each other’s difference and think of each own profit. I hope people will work hard on keeping peace so that future generation will harvest from what the present people sowed. Wish peace to your country and neighboring countries as I have seen such beautiful landscape. Thank you for sharing.

    Yoko

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  24. Such a peaceful place now. It's hard to imagine war once engulfed the area. The last shot of the bridge is amazing. Great capture. Love trains and you captured this one well! Thanks for sharing.

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  25. Thank you for sharing such a great tour of this AREA. NICE PRESENTATION.

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  26. So interesting, and sad. Will humans ever learn to avoid the horror of war?

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  27. Old trains are fascinating. Great shots. Interesting to see the old bridge.

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  28. great series with a sad note. Excellent, very beautiful images Mersad.

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  29. Magnificent post ~ love the vintage train and the old bridge ~ Great shots for OWT!

    artmusedog and carol (A Creative Harbor)

    Happy Day to you!

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  30. Great history lesson. When it comes to war why don't we learn from these lessons? Tom The Backroads Traveller

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  31. What a grand historical tour. And your commentary was exceptional as are your photos!!!

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  32. Great post on the memorial. The train and bridge are sad, but amazing.. Your photos are awesome..

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  33. I always wonder how it was for people that lived through the war...or for the ones that lost all their family....just so much hurt and pain.

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  34. Wow this was amazing and filled with lots of information. Loved the Trains and the Collapsed bridge shots very much.

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  35. How tragic that we do such terrible things to each other.
    Thank you for sharing this history and these lovely images.

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  36. A sad story, but your photos are great. Beautiful scenery.

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  37. Interesting that the old bridge is still in pieces. I wonder if cleaning it up would be too dangerous???

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  38. What an amazing post. Thank you for all of the photos and the informative text.

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  39. I am reading a book about World War 2 now as I research mine and my husband's family history and it is so sad and how we continue to hate.... But your photos are wonderful and show well what remains.... Michelle

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  40. So interesting to learn some of the WWII history of your area. Beautiful photos, and I loved the locomotive! Very sad, but so important to know history.

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  41. The train shots are brilliant

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  42. You are a good writer and photographer
    See you

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