The Persian Gulf War

.. reasons for wanting Iraq out of Kuwait. “The 2 main reasons are the vast amounts oil in the region which account for 53% of the world’s known petroleum reserves and the stability of the nations that have the oil.”4 The 2 biggest in the region are Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. The Saudis were afraid that Iraq would invade Saudi Arabia just like Kuwait.

4AP Press Toronto Star (February 20, 1991) A16 “The United States depends on Middle East petroleum for about 25% of its energy needs and other Western nations even more on Middle East.”4 Many of these nations have very few oil resources and if they did it would cost too much to develop them like the estimated 300 billion barrels of oil in the Alberta and Saskatchewan tar sands.”Other nations like Japan have very few alternative sources for petroleum so they depend greatly on the oil from the Middle East.”1 Other sources of power are generally too expensive to be practical or still under development. So any disruption of oil from this region would seriously negatively affect the economies of the Western nations, just as they were slipping into a recession which would not be very good for the leaders of these countries at the ballot box. 1CNN The Gulf War (Video) (Atlanta, CNN News, 75 min., 1991) 4AP Press Toronto Star (January 16, 1991) A15 However going to war or even the real possibility of it would give a big short term boost to the economies of these nations by increasing the price for a barrel of oil which would allow oil companies to make bigger profits and there would be more exploration in North America to discover new sources of oil. This would help boost the stock markets by increasing positive activity in the trading of shares.

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Also by going to war, it would create jobs in many sectors of the economy from the defense contractors to the service industries down the line.The main reason that Coalition was formed was to protect the “vital interests” in the often unstable Middle East. “The Middle East had been the source of many of the world’s wars after World War II, sometimes almost to point of going nuclear.”4 The Arab partners in the Coalition joined the union to prevent what had happened to Kuwait to occur to them. The United States and the other Western partners wanted to ensure a steady supply of cheap oil and the invasion of Kuwait had risen the price of oil along with creating instability in the Middle East. The best way to restore order to the region and create some stability was to force Iraq out of Kuwait and severely weaken his government and military which the Allies were successful in doing. 4AP Press Toronto Star (February 14, 1991) A13 Another reason that has been suggested is that Iraq was permitted to invade Kuwait just to give the U.S.

an excuse to attack the Iraqis so that they would no longer be a threat to other countries in the region.This would also make the Arab nations dependent on the Americans for their defense so that they would not try to attempt hostile actions in terms of increasing the cost of the oil to them or limiting the production of petroleum as had been demonstrated by the OPEC nations in the 1970s. George Herbert Walker Bush also had personal reasons as to why he wanted Iraq to leave Kuwait. As the youngest fighter pilot in the Navy during World War II, he flew in many missions before being shot down.

“These missions helped to shape his beliefs that the U.S. should be like a global policeman and Saddam Hussein must be stopped just as Hitler should have been stopped from breaking the conditions of the treaties the Germans signed ending World War I.”1 Another reason he felt he had to take military action was that there were American hostages held by the Iraqis after the invasion of Kuwait for a couple of months.

1CNN The Gulf War (Video) (Atlanta, CNN News, 75 min., 1991) Iraq would lose in the war with the Coalition because “their forces were not as well trained as the Coalition forces, their weapons were technologically inferior, they had no air support and the Coalition forces were well-prepared for moves against them.”4 The Iraqi army is mainly composed of draftees, who are not well- trained or equipped. Only the few Republican Guard units that were the elite of the Iraqi army would be any match for the Coalition because the Coalition forces were composed of mainly professional, well-trained volunteers. Also the Iraqi weapons were inferior compared to the Americans.

The Iraqis had weapons mainly from the late 1970s to the early 1980s while the Allies had the most- advanced weaponry available including the AWACS system, the Stealth bomber and the Patriot missile. With this, they quickly achieved air and naval superiority over Iraq and Kuwait. The Iraqis had few planes that were of any threat to the Coalition and most of these never faced combat for unknown reasons.

This made the Allies job much easier. The Coalition forces were also well-prepared as to the enemies battle tactics as they were Soviet ones which the Americans had studied for the possibility of an invasion of Europe. 4AP Press Toronto Star (January 18, 1991) A14 A Gulf War involving Iraq was unavoidable and in this war Iraq was defeated. The Iraqis were becoming a major military power in the Middle East and therefore a danger to the stability of the whole region. The United States and other industrialized Western nations could not afford the loss of oil from the region and therefore they were very willing to ensure that they continued to receive the oil.The U.N.

and U.S. both wanted Iraq to leave but realized that Iraq did not wish to leave and had no intention of doing so unless they were forced out. Neither side wished to back down diplomatically or militarily and with no other useful options available, war was the only option left to the U.S. and her allies.In this war, Iraq would lose because it has inferior weapons, a poorly trained army and the Americans were well prepared for the Iraqi tactics.

Bibliography CNN The Gulf War (Video), Atlanta, CNN News, 75 min., 1991 “Iraq”,World Book New York, World Book, 1990, Vol 10, pp. 260-261 “Kuwait”,World Book New York, World Book, 1990, Vol 11, pp. 354-355 Toronto Star:All A and special sections from January 14, 1991 to March 8, 1991. (Many seection were used).