Gulf War (1990-92)

This timeline covers the Gulf War and the run-up to the conflict.

 

Musings On Iraq review from storm to Freedom, America’s Long War with Iraq

Musings On Iraq review Bradley vs BMP, Desert Storm 1991

Musings On Iraq review M1 Abrams vs T-72 Ural, Operation Desert Storm 1991

Musings On Iraq review the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, Religion, Identity and Otherness in the Analysis of War and Conflict

Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict

Musings On Iraq review The Saddam Tapes, The Inner Workings of a Tyrant’s Regime 1978-2001

Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents

Musings On Iraq review Out Of The Ashes, The Resurrection of Saddam Hussein

 

1990

Aug 2 Saddam invaded Kuwait originally claiming there was a coup and emir called on

Iraq for help Then changed story to Provisional Free Kuwait govt asked for help against ruling Sabah family

Aug 2 Iraq said it would only be in Kuwait for days-weeks until Provisional

            Free Kuwait Govt asked it to leave

Aug 2 Bush NSC meeting focused on how Iraq invasion of Kuwait would allow

Baghdad to control oil market Wondered if Iraq would invade Saudi Arabia to seize its oil Administration made no decision on what policy to take

Aug 2 National Security Adviser Scowcroft talk to Bush said he wanted to address next

NSC meeting and express steadfastly that US would not allow Kuwait invasion to stand Bush agreed

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

Aug 2 NSC’s Near East Dir Haas drafted memo on using sanctions and military

            options to deal with Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait 

Aug 2 Bush met Thatcher who said Kuwait invasion couldn't stand and troops had to

            be sent to Middle East Bush agreed

Aug 2 US stopped loan guarantees to Iraq due to Kuwait invasion

Aug 2 Bush told reporters he was not thinking of using force in response to Iraq’s

            invasion of Kuwait

Aug 2 Joint Chiefs chairman Gen Powell told Gen Schwarkopf he thought US would

            go to war over Saudi Arabia but not Kuwait

Aug 2 National Security Adviser Scowcroft thought Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait could

            not stand

 

Aug 3 2nd NSC meeting on Kuwait invasion National Security Adviser Scowcroft said US

would not accommodate Iraq Defense Secretary Cheney said Iraq was close to Saudi oil fields and if didn't take them would threaten them in the future Deputy Secretary of State Eagleburger said US couldn’t allow seizing countries in post-Cold War world Bush advisers agreed force would be used if necessary and sanctions would probably fail

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

Aug 3 Bush met Saudi Ambassador to US Bandar and convinced him to support US

            troops being sent to his country

 

Aug 4 Bush met Kuwait emir Sabah and said US would free Kuwait and return emir

            to power

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

Aug 4 Joint statement by US and Soviet Union condemned Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait

            and called for withdrawal

Aug 4 White House went over military plans in response to Kuwait invasion Included

200,000-250,000 troops deploying to Saudi Arabia Preparations for offensive operations would take 8-12 months Bush said focus of the initial deployment was to protect Saudi Arabia

 

Aug 5 Pres Bush said Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait would not stand

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

Aug 5 Saudi King asked for briefing on US military plans to respond to Kuwait

            invasion Secretary of Defense Cheney went to get basing rights

Aug 5 NSC meeting Bush said that Kuwait problem wouldn’t be solved until Saddam

            removed and defending Saudis and invading Kuwait two different things

Aug 5 Bush ordered CIA to come up with covert plan to overthrow Saddam

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

 

Aug 6 US delegation convinced King Fahd to invite US troops to Saudi Arabia after

            Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait

Aug 6 Bush authorized Def Sec Cheney to start deploying troops to Saudi Arabia

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Aug 7 Bush announced Operation Desert Shield to deploy US troops to Saudi Arabia

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Aug 8 Iraq announced merger of Kuwait and Iraq 

Aug 8 Pres Bush said a line had been drawn in the sand at the Saudi-Kuwait border to

            stop anymore Iraqi advances

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Aug 9 US forces arrived in Saudi Arabia to protect it from Iraq after invasion of Kuwait

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Aug 10 Saddam speech called on Arabs and Muslims to rise up against the US in jihad

 

Aug 20 NSD 45 signed saying U.S. would get withdrawal of Iraq from Kuwait restore

            Kuwaiti govt restore security of Gulf protect U.S. citizens in Kuwait and Iraq

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

 

Sep 3 Defense Secretary Cheney told Senate Armed Services Committee White House

            didn’t need anymore congressional authorization to take action vs Iraq

 

Sep 9 Joint US-Soviet statement said that Iraq’s aggression in Kuwait would not stand

 

Sep 21 Revolutionary Command Council said it would not retreat from Kuwait and was

ready for mother of all battles

 

Oct 6 CENTCOM cmdr Gen Schwarzkopf given first draft of Kuwait war plan He was

            unhappy with it and asked for more options

 

Oct 10 CENTCOM presented war plans at Pentagon to expel Iraq from Kuwait

 

Oct 11 CENTCOM presented war plan to White House to expel Iraq from Kuwait

Oct 11 Pres Bush decided to give up on sanctions and use force to expel Iraq from

            Kuwait

 

Oct 29 Bush said US wouldn’t rule out use of force against Iraq for Kuwait invasion

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Oct 30 Meeting of Bush advisers on Kuwait National Security Adviser Scowcroft said US

policy at fork in road Could continue defense or go on offense against Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait Joint Chiefs head Gen Powell said Gen Schwarzkopf asked for troops for offensive operations against Iraq in Kuwait Defense Secretary Cheney said offensive action against Iraq should be on the table

Oct 30 Bush decided to double number of US troops in Saudi Arabia

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Nov 1 Bush authorized offensive planning and preparations for Gulf War

(Musings On Iraq review from storm to Freedom, America’s Long War with Iraq)

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

 

Nov 6 Secretary of State Baker convinced China to abstain in UN vote on resolution to

            allow use of force against Iraq for Kuwait invasion

 

Nov 8 Bush asked if he would use force to expel Iraq from Kuwait Wouldn’t answer

            the question Did say there would be enough US forces for offensive action

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Nov 23 Bush said Saudis Egypt Syria agreed on UN resolution to allow use of force vs

            Iraq for invasion of Kuwait

 

Nov 27 Gorbachev gave up on diplomatic effort to defuse Kuwait crisis an backed use of

force against Iraq

 

Nov 29 UN Resolution 678 gave Iraq until 1/15/91 to withdraw from Kuwait

Nov 29 Iraq released all the foreign hostages it held trying to sway world public opinion

 

Dec 6 Iraq began issuing passports for Iranians to visit Shiites shrines in Iraq

Dec 6 Iraq announced it would release foreign nationals it held since Kuwait invasion

 

Dec 15 Saddam told officials that US started war against Iraq in 1986 when it sold

            weapons to Iran in Iran-Contra Affair

 

Dec 27 100 congressmen asked Bush to give Iraq sanctions chance to work

 

Dec 29 Joint Chief head Gen Powell told CENTCOM commander Gen Schwarzkopf to be

            ready to start Gulf War by 1/17/91

 

1991

Jan 9 Secretary of State Baker met with Iraq For Min Aziz Aziz and failed to end Kuwait

crisis Baker warned Aziz not to use WMD in upcoming Gulf War Baker thought Iraq didn’t believe US threats because believed US still stuck on Vietnam Bush sent Baker to Baghdad to convince people he was trying all options to end Kuwait crisis

Jan 9 Iraq said that if it was attacked it would strike Israel

(Musings On Iraq review Iraq in Wartime, Soldiering, Martyrdom, and Remembrance)

Jan 9 Bush sent request to Congress to use force against Iraq in Kuwait

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Jan 10 Congress began debate on Bush’s request to use force against Iraq in Kuwait

 

Jan 12 Bush administration authorized by Congress to use force to make Iraq

            withdraw from Kuwait

(Musings On Iraq review from storm to Freedom, America’s Long War with Iraq)

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

 

Jan 13 UN Sec Gen deCuellar went to Baghdad to try to avert Gulf War

 

Jan 14 Saddam called on Iraqis to fight to the death to hold Kuwait

Jan 14 Intel chief Gen Samarrie told Saddam Iraq would be hard pressed in war Had bad

defensive positions and forces exposed Saddam said Iraq could take casualties and U.S. could not

 

Jan 15 UN deadline for Iraq to withdraw from Kuwait ended

Jan 15 Bush issued NSD 54 saying US wanted immediate withdrawal of Iraq from Kuwait

restore Kuwait govt protect Americans security in Persian Gulf Included defending Saudi Arabia stop Iraq from firing missiles destroy Iraq’s WMD and command and control destroy Republican Guard drive Iraq from Kuwait break will of Iraqi forces encourage defection of Iraqi forces weaken Iraqi public support for Saddam Said that if Iraq used WMD, supported terrorism against U.S. or destroyed Kuwait’s oil fields Saddam should be removed

(Musings On Iraq review from storm to Freedom, America’s Long War with Iraq)

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

Jan 15 Saddam added Allah Akbar to Iraqi flag

Jan 15 UK PM Major said Saddam might become a target of his own people

 

Jan 16 Operation Desert Storm started to expel Iraq from Kuwait US led Coalition began

            air campaign against Iraq

(Musings On Iraq review The Bush Administrations and Saddam Hussein, Deciding on Conflict)

 

Jan 17 Saddam told advisers time to fire missiles at Israel to see whether it would fight

Iraq would then alternate between hitting Israel and Saudis Iraq fired missiles at Haifa and Tel Aviv

Jan 17 US hit command bunkers in Baghdad hoping to kill Saddam

 

Jan 18 Iraq fired missiles at Tel Aviv and Haifa, Israel

Jan 18 Iraqi terrorist tried to blow up US ambassador’s house in Indonesia in retaliation

            for Gulf War

 

Jan 19 Iraq fired missiles at Riyad, Saudi Arabia

Jan 19 Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim said that Supreme Council was against U.S.

            aggression against Iraq over its Kuwait invasion

Jan 19 US 5th Special Forces Group entered Iraq to carry out covert ops behind Iraqi

            Lines

Jan 19 Iraqi terrorist tried to bomb US Information Service HQ in Philippines in

            retaliation for Gulf War

 

Jan 20 Saddam said Iraq’s army hadn’t started fighting but when it did Coalition would

            suffer heavy casualties and leave

 

Jan 22 Iraqi SCUD missile and 2 U.S. Patriot missiles landed on Israeli city of

Ramat Gan

Jan 22 Iraqi forces set fire to 700 Kuwaiti oil wells

 

Jan 23 Iraq dumped 400 mil gallons of oil into Persian Gulf to try to prevent

            US retaking Kuwait

 

Jan 24 Iraq tried to bomb Saudi oil refinery but planes shot down by Saudis

 

Jan 28 Saddam told CNN Iraq would be admired for its fighting spirit Iraq could use WMD

            but hoped it wouldn’t go that far Said Iraq would win war

(Musings On Iraq Origins Of Iraq’s WMD Programs)

 

Jan 29 Iraq launched probing attack upon Saudi city of Khafji occupying it

Jan 29 Report more than 100 German and western companies were providing nuclear know

how to Iraq right up to Jan 91 1980s German company built WMD plants Swedish Austrian Italian French companies helpd with missile program Iraq worked with Argentina on long range missile with help from German companies

(Musings On Iraq Origins Of Iraq’s WMD Programs)

 

Jan 30 Saddam ordered Op Samarra hit and run air attacks on Coalition air force

Jan 30 400 US Special Forces were sent into western Iraq to try to find SCUD missiles

 

Jan 31 US and Saudis pushed Iraqi forces out of Saudi city of Khafji after 2 days of

            Fighting

 

Feb 5 Iraqis got first intelligence that US was moving forces west in Saudi Arabia Didn't

            realize was going to be main attack in Gulf War

 

Feb 6 Jordan’s King Hussein condemned Saudis for letting Arab land be used to attack

            Iraq

 

Feb 9 1st Cavalry Division made reconnaissance mission into Iraq to make sure

            mechanized units could operate in Kuwaiti and Iraqi desert

 

Feb 11 Saddam speech said that Iraqis would be victorious in war and Bush humiliated

            himself by attacking

Feb 11 Report Iraq bought $2 bil in weapons after end of Iran-Iraq War US encouraged allies

to sell weapons to Iraq German company sent technicians to help Iraq’s nuke program Germany also provided 90% of chemical weapons capabilities

(Musings On Iraq Origins Of Iraq’s WMD Programs)

 

Feb 12 Russian diplomat Primakov went to Baghdad to try to arrange withdrawal from

            Kuwait Saddam demanded end of sanctions in return

 

Feb 13 Amiriya shelter in Baghdad bombed by U.S. during Gulf War 408 killed

 

Feb 14 During funeral for member of Hakim family anti-Saddam slogans chanted in

            Najaf

Feb 14 Iraq said it would withdraw from Kuwait if Israel withdrew from Palestine sanctions

            ended and Iraq’s foreign debt forgiven

 

Feb 15 Pres Bush called on Iraqi military and people to overthrow Saddam twice

(Musings On Iraq When The US Helped Start A Rebellion In Iraq That It Didn’t Want)

(Musings On Iraq interview with National Univ of Singapore’s Fanar Haddad on the impact of the 1991 uprising)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

(Musings On Iraq review Out Of The Ashes, The Resurrection of Saddam Hussein)

Feb 15 US Task Force 1-41 first Coalition troops to cross into Iraq to carry out

            reconnaissance and combat missions

Feb 15 US 1st Cav Div launched probing attack into Iraq

Feb 15 US Task Force 1-32 breached Iraqi defensive berm and enters Iraq in deception

            attack to convince Iraq that invasion would come through Wadi Al-Batin

 

Feb 16 US troops destroyed Iraqi radar facility while Apache helicopters conducted raid

            in depth behind Iraqi lines in Iraq

 

Feb 18 Tariq Aziz went to Moscow and accepted Soviets unconditional withdrawal plan

            from Kuwait Then demanded end to all UN sanctions and resolutions

Feb 18 Report 1986-91 US sold $1.5 bil in goods to Iraq Some went to its WMD program

Dual use equipment Pentagon stopped Commerce Dept allowed to be sold Fmr US amb to Iraq Wilsey created US-Iraq Business Forum in 1985 Lobbied Congress not to sanctions Iraq after Halabja US intel repored on German companies helping Iraq with WMD Reagan admin kept info quiet to support Iraq in Iran-Iraq War

(Musings On Iraq Origins Of Iraq’s WMD Programs)

 

Feb 19 US 1st Cav division launched probing attack into Kuwait to foll Iraq about where

            real offensive would begin 

 

Feb 20 US 1st Cav Div launched large attack into Iraq Engaged 7 Iraqi divisions

            to deceive Iraqis on where invasion would come from

 

Feb 21 Foreign Minister Aziz went to Moscow Told Gorbachev Iraq wouldn't accept UN

            resolution to recognize Kuwait independence and pay reparations

Feb 21 Russia announced proposal for Iraq withdrawal from Kuwait in return for lifting of

            sanctions US rejected offer

 

Feb 22 Iraq set Kuwait oil fields on fire

Feb 22 Report Saudis tried to organize Iraqi exiles for post-Saddam Iraq US didn’t believe it

would work

 

Feb 23 Iraq said it agreed to Soviet peace plan and would withdraw from Kuwait

            unconditionally

Feb 23 UN Security Council met Western countries said they weren’t interested in Soviet

            peace plan

Feb 23 Bush told Gen Schwarzkopf to expel Iraq from Kuwait

 

Feb 24 US led Coalition attacked Iraqi ground forces to liberate Kuwait in Operation

            Desert Sabr

Feb 24 US-Saudi Voice of Free Iraq began broadcasting calling on Iraqis to rise up and

            overthrow Saddam Allawi and Iraqi National Accord also part of radio station

(Musings On Iraq When The US Helped Start A Rebellion In Iraq That It Didn’t Want)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

Feb 24 Saddam told aides that Coalition airpower would limit troop movement but Iraqi

soldiers were better because of experience in Iran-Iraq War Saddam and aides believe that U.S. casualties would lead to end of Gulf War

 

Feb 25 Soviets offered another peace plan and Iraq accepted it

Feb 25 Iraqi SCUD missiles hit US army barracks in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia

            killed 28 and wounded over 100

Feb 25 US and UK destroyed Iraqi 26th Inf Div and 52nd Arm Div routing Iraqi 7th Corps on

western flank

Feb 25 3 Republican Guard divisions ordered to west flank to block Coalition VII Corps

(Musings On Iraq review M1 Abrams vs T-72 Ural, Operation Desert Storm 1991)

Feb 25 US Marine helicopters made attack upon Kuwaiti coast to tie down Iraqi forces

            there

Feb 25 Iraqis made first counterattacks in Kuwait but were destroyed Ordered forces to

            retreat to Kuwait City

Feb 25 Radio Baghdad announced withdrawal from Kuwait

Feb 25 Secretary of State Baker National Security Adviser Scowcroft said if Saddam

            remained in power UN sanctions would stay in place

 

Feb 26 Saddam announced withdrawal from Kuwait Iraqi army started pulling out Called

on Iraqis to applaud the army for fighting 30 countries Claimed Iraq won and it was a great victory

Feb 26 US 3rd Inf Div attacked Iraq’s 52nd Armored Div 17 Div Adnan and Tawakalna Divs

Feb 26 Battle of 73 Easting US 2nd Armored Cav Rgt fought Iraq Tawakalna Div By end of

day Tawakalna destroyed

(Musings On Iraq review Bradley vs BMP, Desert Storm 1991)

(Musings On Iraq review M1 Abrams vs T-72 Ural, Operation Desert Storm 1991)

Feb 26 Battle of Norfolk US 1st Armored Div UK 1st Armored Div destroyed Iraq 25th, 31st,

48th Divisions

Feb 26 US aircraft began attacking retreating Iraqi forces from Kuwait on Highway of Death

Feb 26 Iraq said it was willing to end annexation of Kuwait and pay reparations for a ceasefire

in Gulf War and end of sanctions

Feb 26 Bush admin officials said they wanted to keep sanctions on Iraq to provoke a coup

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

(Musings On Iraq review Out Of The Ashes, The Resurrection of Saddam Hussein)

 

Feb 27 Battle of Medina, Basra US 1st Armored Div and 3rd Inf Div defeated Iraq’s

Medina and Adnan Divs in largest tank battle of Gulf War

(Musings On Iraq review M1 Abrams vs T-72 Ural, Operation Desert Storm 1991)

Feb 27 Battle of Kuwait Airport US 1st Marine Div took airport

Feb 27 Pres Bush declared Kuwait liberated

Feb 27 Voice of Free Iraq radio station aired broadcast calling on Iraqis to rise up against

            Saddam Was financed by US and Saudis

(Musings On Iraq When The US Helped Start A Rebellion In Iraq That It Didn’t Want)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

(Musings On Iraq review Out Of The Ashes, The Resurrection of Saddam Hussein)

Feb 27 Bush offered ceasefire Iraq accepted it

 

Feb 28 Bush announced that Kuwait was liberated and Iraq defeated in Gulf War Started

            ceasefire in war

Feb 28 Saddam said that Iraq had succeeded in defeating the United States

Feb 28 Jalal Talabani tried to tell State Dept of impending Kurdish revolt but was turned

            away

 

Mar 1 Pres Bush said that the Iraqi people should overthrow Saddam

(Musings On Iraq When The US Helped Start A Rebellion In Iraq That It Didn’t Want)

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

(Musings On Iraq review Out Of The Ashes, The Resurrection of Saddam Hussein)

 

Mar 2 UN Resolution 686 required Iraq to accept 12 previous UN resolutions on Kuwait

            pay reparations end annexation of Kuwait release POWs return stolen property

Mar 2 Report UNICEF warned of cholera epidemic and malnutrition amongst Iraqi children

because of sanctions

 

Mar 3 Iraq signed ceasefire with US to end Gulf War

 

Mar 5 Iraq officially renounced annexation of Kuwait agreed to pay reparations and

            return stolen property to Kuwait

 

Mar 10 US troops began withdrawing from Persian Gulf

 

Apr 2 UN Resolution 687 said Iraq had to agree to border with Kuwait peacekeeping

force along that border destroy its WMD and long range missiles allow international inspectors in to verify their destruction return stolen property pay reparations Until all of those were met sanctions would remain

 

Apr 11 Cease fire between Iraq and Coalition went into effect

 

May 1 Saddam said that fighting spirit of Iraqis led Bush to call a cease-fire in Gulf War

 

1992

Feb 16 Defense Secretary Cheney said that if U.S. had overthrown Saddam would have to

decide what kind of govt to establish Would have been hard to capture Saddam How many casualties willing to take to accomplish that How many troops would have to stay in Iraq to keep govt going

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

 

Apr 13 Cheney said US didn’t overthrow Saddam in Gulf War because would be too difficult

to occupy Iraq

(Musings On Iraq Review The United States And Iraq Since 1990, A Brief History With Documents)

 

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