The Persian Gulf War: 20 Facts You Should Know

For some of us it seems like it happened yesterday but in truth, there are those reading this who are close to the age of being able to enlist in the United States Armed Forces that were not even born when the Persian Gulf War began.

Our President was George H.W. Bush. He worked with the United Nations during this whole situation.

The Iraqi leader, Saddam Hussein decided he would invade a small Arab country on the Iraq border called Kuwait. As an ally of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, the U.S. along with many other nations, could not stand idly by and allow this to happen.

In today’s post, I am going to provide you with 20 facts you should know about the Persian Gulf War. So, scroll down and learn. If you have any added facts you feel the readers should know, feel free to leave a comment at the end.

1: The Persian Gulf War had many names

If you hear any of these names, they may refer to the Persian Gulf War:

  • Gulf War

  • Iraq War

  • First Gulf War

  • First Iraq War

  • Gulf War I

  • Kuwait War

It also had the code names Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

2: The reason for the Persian Gulf War was…

Iraq led by Saddam Hussein invaded the small country of Kuwait.

3: President Hosni Mubarak tried to stop it

The President of Egypt saw the build-up of Iraqi troops on the Kuwait border. Knowing the intentions of Saddam Hussein, President Mubarak started negotiations attempting to stop the invasion. He was not able to stop it.

4: Iraq had…

300,000 troops in Kuwait after invading the country. They did this by creating peace with Iran and gaining their support.

5: Iraq supporters were…

The countries and organizations that supported Saddam and Iraq in the invasion were:

  • Jordan

  • The PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization)

  • Algeria

  • Tunisia

  • Sudan

  • and Yemen

6: It was because of debt

Because of the War against Iran, Iraq was $80,000,000,000 in debt. Saddam believed that Kuwait and Saudi Arabia should forgive $30 Billion because he claimed he protected them from Iran. He also claimed that Kuwait was intentionally keeping OPEC prices low by over-drilling. He also stated that Kuwait was “slant-drilling” into Iraq territory.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. Top 44 Iraq War Facts
  2. The Iraq War Timeline: What Every American Should Know
  3. and The Top 20 Iraq War Books
  4. The Top 10 Iraq War Battles

7: Kuwait used lies to generate good public relations with U.S. citizens

To generate a public relations blitz on American citizens, the Kuwaiti Government established Citizens for a Free Kuwait. Using one of the best public relations firms of Hill & Knowlton, a young girl described seeing babies pulled out of incubators by Iraq troops and left to die. The girl turned out to be the daughter of the Kuwait Ambassador to the United States.

8: The coalition consisted of…

39 countries participated either with troops, finances or both. The countries were: Afghanistan, Argentina, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Honduras, Hungary, Italy, Kuwait, Morocco, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Niger, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Syria, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

9: The Persian Gulf War began…

On January 16th, 1991 with massive air assaults.

10: The amount of United States troops deployed were…


11: Decoys

In a move similar to what General Patton did during the Invasion of Normandy, the United States set up what seemed to be bases with inflatable tanks and troop carriers near the horn of Kuwait to be a decoy and divert Iraqi attention. The Iraqis fell for it and set defenses in the wrong area.

12: The cost of the Persian Gulf War was…

$61,000,000,000. Gulf States paid $36,000,000,000. Germany and Japan paid $16,000,000,000.

13: The ground assault began on…

February 24th, 1991, a massive ground movement began with forces wiping out Iraqi armor and troops all along the way.

14: 100,000+

Iraqi soldiers were killed.

15: 383

United States soldiers were killed.

16: Israel had the 3rd highest casualty rate

And, they were not involved in the War. The reason is because Saddam Hussein ordered that Scud Missiles be fired into Israel. Many hit in the area of Tel Aviv. The ironic part is the fact that there were so many Iraq expats living in that area.

17: On February 27th…

Baghdad announced that they would comply with all United Nations resolutions.

18: Kuwait is liberated…

On February 27th, 1991, Kuwait is free of Iraqi forces.

19: The total time until a ceasefire

was 42 days when a complete ceasefire was declared.

20: The aftermath in Iraq led to…

It was somewhat chaotic, but Saddam Hussein was not forced from power. The United States and British still patrolled the skies above Iraq and mandated a no-fly zone. The Kurds in Northern Iraq attempted an uprising as did the Shi’ites in Southern Iraq. Hussein quickly squelched those uprisings.

Iraqi forces regularly shot at the patrolling planes, and they disrupted weapons inspectors in every way they could. There are many claims that Saddam used chemical weapons on the groups attempting to up-rise against his power.

Many say that if the U.S. would have supported Kurd and Shi’ite control, things would be much different in Iraq now.

Would they?

Final Thoughts

There are many ideas and thoughts about how President Bush and the U.S. Government handled the Persian Gulf War.

Personally, I believe President Bush handled it quite well. Our troops handled it brilliantly. Quickly and decisively, they invaded and conquered. Our leaders performed their jobs in a magnificent fashion.

So what are your thoughts? It is ok if you do not agree, but please be civil about it.

I would especially like to hear from any soldiers who were there. Tell us your position and your opinion how it was all handled.

We here at Part Time Commander want to thank all who participated in the Persian Gulf War along with those who have participated in actions after it. It is because of people like you that we reside in the greatest country in the world.

Please post all comments in the section below. Thank you.

chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)

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