In January 1991, then-President George H.W. Bush started the war on Iraq, and imposed sanctions and no-fly zones, which were continued by President Bill Clinton throughout the 1990s. By 2001, hundreds of thousands of civilian Iraqi deaths were wrought by the U.S. government and the UN, and there was widespread anti-American anger felt by many in the Middle East.
Here is a brief review of what led up to the elder President Bush’s 1991 war on Iraq:
In 1990, Iraq and its leader, Saddam Hussein, were engaged in disputes with Kuwait. Iraq believed that Kuwait was siphoning Iraq’s oil via horizontal drilling, and Iraq also believed that Kuwait’s own oil production was above OPEC quotas which allegedly effected in lower oil profits for Iraq.
Saddam Hussein had been the U.S. government’s favorite during the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war, which Saddam had started with his invasion of Iran. The U.S. government’s arming and providing tactical battle planning to Iraq, despite U.S. officials knowing that Iraq was using chemical weapons during that conflict, were well documented.
In their discussion, according to the New York Times, Glaspie stated, “…we have no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreement with Kuwait. I was in the American Embassy in Kuwait during the late 60’s. The instruction we had during this period was that we should express no opinion on this issue and that the issue is not associated with America. (Sec. of State) James Baker has directed our official spokesmen to emphasize this instruction.” (More here.)
Apparently, Saddam Hussein took those words as a green light to invade Kuwait.
However, George Bush the elder then did a bait-and-switch, and began preparing for his war on Iraq. But the biggest task for Bush was to convince the American people that the war on behalf of Kuwait, an extremely anti-democratic, authoritarian monarchy, was not for oil but for “liberating” Kuwait from Saddam.
To sell this war to the American people, the government………..