By Patricia L Johnson
Following is a brief history of how Operation Desert Shield began from the History Channel. What’s interesting to note is the fact Iraq invaded Kuwait on August 2, 1990 and Operation Desert Shield was begun five days later August 7, 1990, when F-15 Eagle fighters from Langley Air Force Base in Virginia arrived in Saudi Arabia. The first U.S. death from this mission was on August 12, 1990. Department of Defense statistics
On August 2, 1990 President George H.W. Bush issued Executive Order 12722 declaring a National Emergency [emergency to address the threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States posed by the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq]. On August 22, 1990 President Bush issued Executive Order 12727 to call up selected reservists and their tour of duty was extended by President Bush on November 12, 1990 by Executive Order 12733.
By November 29, 1990 the U.N. Security Council passed a resolution authorizing the use of force against Iraq if Saddam Hussein did not withdraw his forces from Kuwait by January 15, 1991. Iraqi forces were not withdraw and on January 16, 1991 Operation Desert Storm began against Iraq. By the time it was all over 18, 466 missions has been flown [through June 7, 1991] transporting 509,129 passengers and 594,730 tons of cargo.
On February 28, 1991 President George H.W. Bush declared a ceasefire, but the damage had already been done.
Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm produced a total of 293 U.S. deaths 148 during combat, with another 145 noncombat deaths. 15 women were included in U.S. casualties. In addition there were 467 U.S. wounded in action.
Also lost were a total of 63 aircraft. 37 fixed wing, during combat missions and 15 in noncombat missions. 23 helicopters were lost, 5 during combat missions and 18 during noncombat missions.
If the President of the United States declared a “National Emergency” each and every time one country invaded another, this country would never know the meaning of the word peace. The difference between Iraq invading Kuwait and other countries invading their neighbors is the amount of known world oil reserves. Iraq and Kuwait together represent roughly 20 percent.
Here it is twenty years later and we are still in Iraq. How many U.S. soldiers will die, and how many U.S. tax dollars will be spent, before we finally get our troops out of a country whose only real fault is controlling a substantial amount of oil?
© 2011 Patricia L Johnson
Aug 2, 1990:
Iraq invades Kuwait
“At about 2 a.m. local time, Iraqi forces invade Kuwait, Iraq’s tiny, oil-rich neighbor. Kuwait’s defense forces were rapidly overwhelmed, and those that were not destroyed retreated to Saudi Arabia. The emir of Kuwait, his family, and other government leaders fled to Saudi Arabia, and within hours Kuwait City had been captured and the Iraqis had established a provincial government. By annexing Kuwait, Iraq gained control of 20 percent of the world’s oil reserves and, for the first time, a substantial coastline on the Persian Gulf. The same day, the United Nations Security Council unanimously denounced the invasion and demanded Iraq’s immediate withdrawal from Kuwait. On August 6, the Security Council imposed a worldwide ban on trade with Iraq. Click link to read full story http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history”