Now all roads lead to France and heavy is the tread
Of the living; but the dead returning lightly dance.
Edward Thomas, Roads

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Forgotten General: Russia's Nikolai Yudenich


General Yudenich
While almost everyone, including historians, would rate Alexei Brusilov the best Russian commander of the war, a case can be made that their most successful general was the little remembered Nikolai Yudenich, commander on the Caucasian Front. A hero of the Russo-Japanese War, he utterly destroyed Enver Pasha's 1914 offensive, and later, when subordinated to Grand Duke Nicholas, he won repeated successes. The Caucasus Front received little attention or reinforcements in 1914, and things went back and forth, but in the following year Yudenich won victories at Erzerum, Trebizond, and Erzincan. However, after the first revolution, the Provisional Government found him insubordinate and relieved him of command.

Later, in the Civil War, he would command badly outnumbered White forces on the critical Petrograd Front but would ultimately be forced to flee, first to Finland. General Yudenich would ultimately die in exile in France in 1933.

2 comments:

  1. Thank you for returning some light to Yudenich and the underappreciated Caucuses front - understated even within the underappreciated Russian front!

    I think I first read about Yudenich in the Russian Civil War context.

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  2. Does anybody know if Nikolai Yudenich had any children?

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