ORIGIN OF THE FIRST YUGOSLAV MILITARY INTELLIGENCE BODY

 

In the Serbian army, the first official institution encompassing the military intelligence function, was the Main General Staff, established on the basis of the 1876 law on " Establishment of the General Staff". The bearer of that function was its first, that is to say Operational division. 

"The 1884 regulation on General Staff vocation" provided that leadership and executive body of the military intelligence service would be Foreign Section within the Operational division.
Since 1900 the Main General Staff expanded the jurisdiction of the Foreign Section whereas in accordance to the 1902 Regulation on General Staff vocation its name was changed to Reporting Section of the Operational Division.
In 1908, after Bosnia and Herzegovina was annexed, the Main General Staff formed the border areas with Turkey and Austria-Hungary towards Bosnia, where supervisory officers were engaged with solely intelligence tasks.

The border area with Turkey was covered by the following border regions:

  • Vranjski - supervisory offcier Bozin Simic,
  • Raski - captain Radoje Pantic and
  • Javorski - captain Milan Vidojevic.

Each border area represented an intelligence center

During the WWI, when a Headquarters of the Serbian Supreme Command, was formed out of, the Main General Staff , the Reporting Section of the Operational Division became the Intelligence Section of the Operational Division of the Supreme Command.
In the period between 1916 and 1918 at the Thessaloniki front line, all the activities of the military intelligence service were carried out by the integrated Operational Division of the Supreme Command, mostly through its Intelligence Section encompassing War Press Information Bureau, Censorship ВК, Police Section, delegates and liaison officer in the allied armed forces and occasionaly tchetnik (special) units. Military intelligence function was integrated with all the functions of the Supreme Command (operational, logistic etc.) and encompassed several particular functions such as: security, informational and propaganda activity, organization and coordination of the special operations and partly relations with allied armies.
Activities of the Intelligence Section were intensified and succesful and it was concluded that it should be transformed into Intelligence Division of the Supreme Command at the insistence of the Chief of the Staff of the Supreme Command and his assistant.

The Supreme Command Staff successfully developed its operations at the Thessaloniki front line. One of the methods was generalization and exploitation of its own, allied and adversary experiences. The conclusion was that the Intelligence Section should be transformed into the Intelligence Division of the Supreme Command, at the insistence of the Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command and his assistant, which were mostly involved in integration of work carried out in eleven divisions of the Supreme Command. 

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