August 12 1918, Baku–The remaining Red Army forces in Baku were left in an awkward situation after the Bolshevik commissars that had been running the city were deposed and arrested in late July. The troops were able to secure the commissars’ release, and attempted to turn the local population against the new government, the Centro-Caspian Dictatorship, to no avail. Not wanting to cooperate with the British, even to defend the city against the Turks, they were given orders from Moscow to depart. The Centro-Caspian Dictatorship gave them ships to take them to Astrakhan, the last Bolshevik-friendly port on the Caspian, and they departed on August 12. However, it soon became apparent that they had taken off with a large quantity of materiel needed for the city’s defense, and the Centro-Caspian Dictatorship soon dispatched more ships to track them down. They soon intercepted the Red ships, brought them back to Baku, and forced them to unload all their military supplies before letting them depart again. The Baku commissars, on the other hand, were arrested once again. The departure of the Red Army troops and their theft of the supplies needed to defend the city completely turned the local population decidedly against the Bolsheviks; they would only return, by force, in 1920.
Today in 1917: Gotha Raid on Southend
Today in 1916: King George Dines With French Officials