Operation Caesar was an operation carried out by Italy, and later Austria-Hungary, and later being altered to involve the Ottoman Empire. The operation was carried out from July of 1917 to April of 1919, and mainly focused on the security of Spain and Portugal for Italy and the support and aid for the troops of Austria-Hungary, which meant betraying the alliance Italy had been building with France.
The operation was placed into effect by Italian General Fiume Wells after the Italian Army's defeat in Venice in 1912, though it was not until July of 1917 that the plan went into effect. The plan was named in reference to the stabbing of Julius Caesar by Brutus, and how he would do the very same to France.
Although unanticipated by Wells, Austrian-Hungarian General Rian Kovacsev would be an intergral part of the operation. Kovacsev needed more armies, and was facing a rather devistating assault from the russian powers. Fiume promised him that under Operation Caeser would not only increase his army size, but that the incoming threat of both Russia and the Ottomans would be quelled, if not stalled entirely.
The Ottoman Empire, unbeknownst to them, were about to slightly infringe on the plan in question. The Ottomans had a fleet in Greece at the time, and were faced with massive pressure from the debilitating Russian Army. As a result, out of pressure and need for another supply line, Turkey moved their fleet into Tunis, the very location that Fiume had planned to take first. This event set into motion the first phase of Operation Caesar.
First Phase Edit
The "First Phase" of Operation Caesar did not go nearly as well as Fiume expected it to. While he was able to get his fleet from Tuscany to the Tyrrhenian Sea; the next step, however, was getting that fleet into Tunis, where he could then supposedly make way into Spain and Portugal. Fiume had a deal set in place with both Kovacsev and the Ottoman General Zachariah Burakgazi, whom had been spearingheading the operation to this point.
Burakgazi currently held Greece at the time through an Ottoman fleet, and had made a plan with both Wells and Kovacsev to orchestrate safe passage through the Ionian Sea and back to Greece, where the fleet would return to the dock unharmed.
While this was the original plan, Burakgazi had at some point in 1917 recieved a telegraph referred to as the "Kovacsev Note" that denoted Austria-Hungary's plans to attack Greece instead of letting the ship back into port. As a result, Burakgazi decided to keep his fleet in Tunis, securing the supply line it gave, instead of letting Italy lay claim to it.
Kovacsev had at some point decided that the fleet in Tunis would not be allowed passage back to Greece, as he planned to attack the very territory himself.