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Gulf War

Essay by   •  December 20, 2010  •  941 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,327 Views

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On August 2nd, 1990 the first Iraqi tanks crossed into Kuwait, as

part of an invasion that marked the start of a six-month conflict

between the United States and Iraq. These tanks were ordered to

invade Kuwait by Saddam Hussein, the ruthless dictator of Iraq.

The Iraqi troops looted Kuwaiti businesses and brutalized Kuwaiti

civilians. Saudi Arabia began to fear that they may be invaded as

well, and on August 7th they formally asked President Bush for

US assistance. The US pledged to defend the Saudis, and to

remove the Iraqis from Kuwait. Great masses of troops from

many different nations were deployed in the Persian Gulf area. At

4:30 PM EST on January 16, 1991, the first aircraft with orders to

attack Iraqi targets were launched from Saudi Arabia, marking the

beginning of Operation Desert Storm.

Dictators like Mr. Hussein cannot be allowed to take advantage of

smaller countries like bullies after lunch money. There has to be

someone to stop them, or they will gain more and more power and

land, just as Adolf Hitler tried to do in World War II. That

someone, in the case of Mr. Hussein, was the United States,

along with a multinational coalition. The US had just cause in

entering a war against Iraq because of Iraq's invasion of the small

and defenseless nation of Kuwait. Actions such as that must be

repulsed. Iraq had no just cause in invading Kuwait; their reasons

were either obscure or for their benefit. The US had to help

Kuwait regain their nation.

In protecting the Saudis from invasion and removing the Iraqis

from Kuwait the US had the right intention. The real reason the

US decided to fight the Iraqis was to restore Kuwait's government

and to defend Saudi Arabia. There was no underlying reason,

such as to receive better prices on oil or to make the Kuwaitis

indebted to the US so as to receive favors. Throughout the war,

the US made clear their purpose and intent in fighting the Iraqis,

and not once did they stray from it.

Legitimate authority was established when the Congress voted to

follow United Nations resolution 678, section two of which

"Authorizes Member States co-operating with the Government of

Kuwait, unless Iraq on or before 15 January 1991 fully

implements, as set forth in paragraph 1 above, the foregoing

resolutions, to use all necessary means to uphold and implement

resolution 660 (1990) and all subsequent relevant resolutions and

to restore international peace and security in the area." The vote to

follow the resolution was as good as a declaration of war, as far

as legitimate authority is concerned, and is in some ways better.

The adoption of the resolution only authorized the use of force to

remove Iraq from Kuwait. This limited the ability of our military

to completely destroy Iraq's military or to drive Hussein from

power. Our authority to remove Iraq from Kuwait was clearly

legitimate.

The Gulf War was fought with proportionality clearly in the

leadership's mind. President Bush planned to get Iraq's troops out

of Kuwait and then stop. He had no intention of carrying the war

further. Although Bush would have dearly liked to have marched

US troops toward Baghdad to destroy Hussein's government, he

did not, because of the risk of heavy casualties, and because it

went against the proportionality idea. The leaders who picked

targets for

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