The Desert Storm War Essay Research Paper

The Desert Storm War Essay, Research Paper

The Desert Storm War, like almost all wars throughout history, did not

happen overnight. There were many events which led to the war. It could

easily be seen that a conflict would arise in the Middle East. The sign of war

were evident.

On July 17, 1990, Saddam Hussein accused Kuwait of oil

overproduction and theft of oil from the Rumailia Oil Field. This was the first

sign of a future conflict. One week later, April Glaspie, US Ambassador to

Iraq, tells Hussein that the Iraq/Kuwait dispute is an Arab matter and it does

not affect the United States. This was a bad move. It was like telling Hussein

that he could do anything he wanted. By August 2, 1990, Iraq invaded

Kuwait, which was what forced the United States to enter into the affairs of

the Middle East. President George Bush decides to freeze Iraqi and Kuwaiti

assets. Soon, the United Nations demands that Hussien should withdraw.

Although was has not yet been declared, it is obvious that military actions

will have to be taken.

On August 7, 1990, Secretary of Defense Cheny goes to Saudi Arabia.

The 82nd Airborne and several fighter squadrons are also sent. This was the

beginning of the long military build up. The following day, Iraq decides to

annex Kuwait. The UN declares the annexation invalid. The United States

tries to counter Iraq by announcing the interdiction program of Iraqi shipping.

In addition to this, President Bush authorizes the call for reserve US troops to

enter the Middle East. American military personnel begins to swell in the

area. On August 25, the UN authorizes military action. Iraq counteracts by

storming several diplomatic missions in Kuwait City. President Bush then

orders additional military units to the Middle East to give an “offensive

option” to American forces. This was the build up stage for the Desert Storm


On November 20, 1990, 45 Democrats file a suit in Washington to

have President Bush seek Congressional approval of military operations. This

suit was eventually thrown out. President Bush then seeks public approval by

visiting the troops stationed in the Middle East. This was not planned to

change any military affairs, but it helped to ease tensions in the United States.

A week later, the UN Security Council decides to authorize force if Iraq does

not withdraw from Kuwait by midnight, eastern standard time, January 15,

1991. Tensions in the Middle East are at an all time high. The war may start

at any minute.

On January 12, 1991, a vote was taken in Congress to allow US troops

to be used in offensive operations. Three days later, a deadline is set by the

UN Resolution 678 for Iraq to withdraw. On January 16, the first US

government statement of Operation Desert-Storm is made. US warplanes then

attack Baghdad, Kuwait, and other military targets in the Iraq area. The war

has begun.

On January 17, 1991, Iraq launches it’s first SCUD missiles. US forces

are still building while this is happening. US forces in the Middle East exceed

500,000 by January 30. On February 6, Jordan King Hussein lashes out

against the American bombardments and supports Iraq. The American bombardments, however, continue. On one mission, US bombers destroy a

bunker complex in Baghdad with several hundred citizens inside. The death

toll is nearly 300. President Bush then issues an ultimatum to Iraq. If Iraqi

forces do not withdraw from Kuwait by February 23, American ground forces

will move in. Iraq fails to comply, and the ground war begins. Although high

casualties were expected high during the ground campaign, they are

excessively low. Many Iraqi personnel surrender. The death rate among

American military personal is actually lower during this campaign then it

generally is during peace time.

By February 26, 1991, Kuwaiti resistance leaders declare that they are

in control of Kuwait City. Iraqi forces have been defeated. President Bush

orders a cease fire effective at midnight Kuwaiti time, February 27. On March

3, Iraqi leaders formally accept the cease fire terms. The war is over. POW

begin to be released. By March 8, the first US combat forces begin to return


This was the Desert Storm War. Like most wars, its beginning was

unseen until the first military action was taken. Unlike most wars, however,

the casualties among military personnel were drastically light. Although the

war did not last very long, it had a great impact on the Middle East. Kuwait

was put into shambles during the war. With financial aid, Kuwait would once

again begin producing oil. The evils which start wars were once again



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