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Aftermath

Background

While Second Imperial Civil War was won by Imperial Loyalists of Romanos Angelos-Premysloides, everyone knew that Empire and Imperial military command must meet to discuss about outcome, massive casualties and tragic course of civil war.

On secret meeting of top army commanders and Emperor Romanos with participation of Radana Argyros and Constantine Chadenos, occurred conflict between two very different point of views. One represented by stratégos Strategopulos, the second represented by stratégos Alexius.

Conclusions

Strategopulos: Imperial Military achieved decisive victory and reforms were successful

Alexios Strategopulos, as one of proponent of imperial military reform (Flavian-Alexian reforms) argued that imperial military proved high capabilities and very efficient military and war activity. In his summary:

"Despite all criticism and half-truths, Imperial Military proved victorious superiority over very strong enemy force. Most of defeats of Imperial Military were caused by personal mistakes and by very poor military intelligence activity. Military intelligence was not able found out traitors in Serbia, just like Constantine Argyros, or myself, committed various mistakes during tactical and strategical leadership of military. I will not deny my mistakes during fall of Mitrovica, like lack of focus on Mitrovica situation and ignoring this threat. On other hand, military forces in Mitrovica were able to kill thousands enemies and slow False Emperor advancement. My suggestion is to continue in general development of military forces and increasing budget, with improving quality and quantity of Imperial Army and Imperial Fleet. Without Flavian-Alexian Reforms, Imperial Military would be probably defeated in this war."

Alexius: Imperial Military reforms failed and war proved low military capabilities

Stratégos Alexius, who took control over military after disaster at Adrianople and personally led defense of Thessaloniky, was much more harsh about results of Imperial Military.

"While I can fully agree with general Strategopulos about his personal mistakes in military leadership and also about lack of activities of Imperial Intelligence, I must point out that so-called Flavian-Alexian Reforms failed in practice. Most of designed fortress were ignored by advancing armies, too far apart themselves, with lack of supply roads and effective supply depots, without connection to cities and settlements. Lack of funds led to decrease of troops payment and decrease of morale. Imperial Military did not introduce various improvements and only elite guards unit have real quality of armour and weapons. Imperial Command in many case ignored terrain, weather, local conditions and attempts to let defense were, in best case, despair. Catastrophe at Skopia was complete tragic embarrassment of officer corps. My suggestions are bit different. While I also agree with Strategopulos that increasing of military budget is necessary to improve military capabilities, its only halfway solution. We must reorganized Imperial Intelligence, dismiss their commanders and improve their activities, as well as enlarge their extent, rights and authority. We must abandon so-called Fortress System and reduce military districts in to European, Constantinople and Asian district with three fortress connected to largest cities, with small outposts, system of early warning and improve supply roads, build military roads designed only for military. Reinforcements on some roads were blocked by civilians. And do not forget, without Mongolian and Templar help, we would be probably defeated."

Emperor decisions

Emperor Romanos partially agreed with both opinions and also confess his own failure as he forbidden spread artillery to other cities and to fortress. Emperor announced increase of military budget by 150% (increase by 24.4 million Hp/1,22 billion $). Also announced disbanding, reorganization and reformation of Imperial Military Intelligence, building military roads and forming Stratégos Staff as new highest commanding corps and appointed Alexius first chief-of-staff. Fortress System was abandoned as unsuccessful experiment. Military districts were reformed into Outers (East Asia Minor and Balkan-Dalmatia) and Inners (Greece-Macedonia-Thracia and Nicean) with independent Constantinople district. All of these districts will have only one large fortress and that fortress must be tied to largest city. Emperor also ordered to focus Imperial Military on mobility, cavalry and guerrilla tactics and cooperation with civilian population.

Other decisions:

  1. Tactic and strategy of static defense will be abandoned in favour of mobile defense and strong cavalry.
  2. Every each military district will have own military academy.
  3. All unfinished fortress construction will be dismantle and material will be used on strengthened completed fortresses.
  4. In later years, imperial military budget will be fixed on 8% of economic output (GDP).

Other losses

Very soon, Imperial Government counted other losses. Agricultural output in war torn provinces decreased by 60%, mining and production output about 75%, while about 150,000 civilians were killed, or abducted by Manuel troops. Productivity and value of Thessaloniky decreased by 90%, Mitrovica by 95% and Adrianople was totally destroyed. Most of Dalmatia, Achaea, Greece and Bosnia, as well as all provinces in Asia Minor, were left intact with small, or no casualties and damages. It took about five years to restore economic output in affected territories. Destruction of these cities led in long term consequences in to increasing superiority of Constantinople and in to rise of many new important cities (Mostar, Banja Luka, Skopje, Dyrrhachium, Larissa, Lublan).

Profits

Roman Empire achieved even few profits. Aside of earn many experiences, reform and rearming of army and similar stuff, Imperial Fleet was significantly strengthened by capture of 75 Manuel ships that were rebuilt and rearmed as artillery war ships. With fall of Mitrovica, Empire also regains about two-thirds of gold and silver plundered from various provinces or gifted to Manuel Angelos from his patrons. Last profit was elimination of rival succession branches, as Komnenos dynasty in East was weakened by Il Khanate rule and Manuel dynastic branch extinct.

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