Today in History: Gulf War Ground Offensive Begins
Security is tight as a lid around New York City, given the build up of events. People are on edge, realizing that the U.S. is entering into serious warfare, despite all the questions raised. We find ourselves comforting friends and family who are concerned about overseas travel and the inevitable gridlock around the United Nations where we are getting married on a cold, crisp, spectacularly blue morning in mid-February. It’s too happy a day to be worried about the biting weather… and the military is on our minds’ back burner, for at least a little while. Years later, I double frame a cobalt vase of red hibiscus — a still life gouache painted by my mother on the back of a typed letter from her younger sister. Just two weeks into the new year, my aunt writes, “There are heavy security precautions being taken everywhere here in the City, but especially in the airports and transportation locations, because it is assumed that even if the war is over by the time you arrive, there is still the danger of post war reprisals by the Iraqis, who seem to determined to punish that ‘Satan Bush.'”
On February 24, 1991, the United States launched a major offensive against Iraq and Kuwait, stemming from Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait, a tiny country rich in oil. in August 1990. After four days, Kuwait was freed and President George Bush declared a cease fire. Approximately 10,000 of Iraq’s troops were held prisoner and the U.S. Air Force has been established deep within Iraq. The Gulf was code-named Operation Desert Shield and then Operation Desert Storm, and many nations joined the coalition, which proved the largest military alliance since World War II.
The following articles are selected from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.
- Jordan, M. (1990, Dec 08). Sketching History in the Sand: VA Unit Documents Operation Desert Shield. The Washington Post (1974-Current File).
- Allies Poised for Ground Offensive. (1991, Feb 11). The Times of India (1861-Current)
- Grier, P. (1991, Feb 14). Gulf Showdown Scenario: Coaltion’s Ground Offensive Plan Calls for Three-Dimensional Assault. The Christian Science Monitor (1908-Current File)
- McNulty, T. J., & George de Lama. (1991, Feb 24). Diplomatic Efforts Carried to Deadline. Chicago Tribune (1963-Current File)
- The Gulf War. (1991, Feb 25). Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File)
- The Persian Gulf War: Allied Offensive. (1991, Feb 25). The Washington Post (1974-Current File)
- Mathur, B. (1992, Oct 12). Schwarzkopf Alleges Manipulations in Gulf War. The Times of India (1861-Current)
- Gordon, M. R. and Bernard E. Trainor. (1994, Oct 26). Why the Gulf War Ended When It Did. The Times of India (1861-Current)
- Apple, R. W. (1996, Feb 04). The Latest History of the Gulf War. New York Times (1923-Current File)
- Bowden, M. (2003, Mar 02). The Things They Carried: One Man’s Memoir of the 1991 Persian Gulf War. New York Times (1923-Current File)
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