On a personal animosity between Saddam Hussein
On Aug. 2, 1990, Iraqi military forces, on orders from President Saddam Hussein, invaded and occupied the small
country of Kuwait. The Persian Gulf War of 1991–from January 16 to February 28–was fought to expel Iraq and
restore Kuwaiti independence.
The war introduced several technologically advanced weapon systems. As well,the United States forged a
broad-based international coalition that confronted Iraq militarily strategy.
The military coalition consisted of:
unni-versus-Shia (for and Arab-versus-Persian religious and ethnic
disputes, to a personal animosity between Saddam Hussein and
Ayatollah Khomeini. Above all, Iraq launched the war in an effort to
consolidate its rising power in the Arab world and to replace Iran as
the dominant Persian Gulf state. Phebe Marr, a noted analyst of
Iraqi affairs, stated that “the war was more immediately the result of
poor political judgement and miscalculation on the part of Saddam
Hussein,” and “the decision to invade, taken at a moment of Iranian
Iraq and Iran had engaged in border clashes for many years and
had revived the dormant Shatt al Arab waterway dispute in 1979.
Iraq claimed the 200-kilometer channel up to the Iranian shore as
its territory, while Iran insisted that the thalweg–a line running down
the middle of the waterway–negotiated last in 1975, was the official
border. The Iraqis, especially the Baath leadership, regarded the
1975 treaty as merely a truce, not a definitive settlement.
The Iraqis also perceived revolutionary Iran’s Islamic agenda as
threatening to their pan-Arabism. Khomeini, bitter over his expulsion
from Iraq in 1977 after fifteen years in An Najaf, vowed to avenge
Shia victims of Baathist repression. Baghdad became more
confident, however, as it watched the once invincible Imperial
Iranian Army disintegrate, as most of its highest ranking officers
were executed. …