On this day October 23, 1911

An Italian pilot takes off from Libya to observe Turkish army lines during the Turco-Italian War setting the first use of aircraft in war.

Italian dirigibles over Libyan Territory

Italian dirigibles over Libyan Territory

The Italo-Turkish War saw numerous technological advances used in warfare; notably the plane and the first use of military radio telegraph communications.

As a result of this conflict, Italy was awarded the Ottoman provinces of Tripolitania, Fezzan, and Cyrenaica.

These provinces together formed what became known as Libya. During the conflict, Italian forces also occupied the Dodecanese Islands in the Aegean Sea.

Italy had agreed to return the Dodecanese Islands to the Ottoman Empire according to the Treaty of Ouchy in 1912 as it was signed at the Ouchy Castle in Lausanne, Switzerland); however the vagueness of the text allowed a provisional Italian administration of the islands, and Turkey eventually renounced all claims on these islands in the Article 15 of the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923.

Turkey had to withdraw all its military forces and administrative agents from Libya according to Article 2 of the Treaty of Ouchy in 1912 (per Article 22 of the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923).

Although minor, the war was an important precursor of the First World War as it sparked nationalism in the Balkan states. Seeing how easily the Italians had defeated the disorganized Ottomans, the members of the Balkan League attacked the Empire before the war with Italy had ended.


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