At the end of 1914, the Western Front had taken the shape of trench warfare. The Russian offensive in the east had collapsed. The Russian Tsarist army had suffered serious defeats in the conflit with Germany.
This was not compensated for by Russian victories over Austria-Hungary. The Western powers were unable to supply any real military support from Russia by land. This was possible only by sea, but the Germans blocked the Baltic routes, and their Turkish allies had closed the Black Sea straits (Bosphorus and Dardanelles). For Russia, this road was of great economic importance – almost all Russian exports and imports took place through the Black Sea Straits. The opening of the front in the area of the straits was mainly to unblock this route and open Russia to Western supplies and open the way for the Allies to capture the capital of the Turkish Ottoman Empire, Constantinople, and eliminate this country from the war. The Allied countries hoped that after the Turkish defeat, Germany would be forced to have to engage significant numbers of their forces to Eastern Europe, weakening their forces significantly on the Western Front
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