International Relations after the Cold War

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At the beginning of August 1990, Saddam Hussein, the then leader of Iraq arranged for the intrusion and occupation of Kuwait. Other Arab nations were horrified by his orders thereby calling on the intervention of America plus other western nations (Wright, 2007). At the beginning of 1991, Saddam Hussein defied the demands by the UN Security Council towards their withdrawal from the neighboring Kuwait resulting in the Persian Gulf War that was led by the solid United States Operation Desert Storm that attacked from space. For about one and half month of continuous attack by the confederate alliance both on the ground and in space, the then President of America, George Bush H.W. declared a truce on 28th of February at a time when a majority of Iraqi forces had fled or surrendered from Kuwait.  As much as the Persian Gulf War had originally been considered as an unworthy success for the international alignment creating a conflict in the disruptive region it resulted in the Iraq war, a subsequent gulf War that started in 2003.

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The war between Iraq and Iran that had for a long time troubled the region had come to an end through a ceasefire that was brokered in the August of 1988 by the United Nations, however, the two nations had not settled on a dependable peace treaty as by the mid of 1990. The July meeting of the nations’ foreign ministers held in Geneva encouraged the dissolution of the dispute. Nevertheless, two weeks afterward, Iraq’s president Hussein gave an address accusing neighboring Kuwait of drawing off oil from Ar-Rumaylahfields situated at the shared boundary.  Furthermore, Saddam incriminated Saudi Arabia together with Kuwait of colluding and maintaining oil costs low thereby gratifying the oil-buying nations from the western regions (John, 2003). According to Hussein, the invasion in the august of 1990 was justified as Kuwait was an artificial nation formed from the coast of Iraqi by the Western colonialists after the First World War. Iraqi had started to amass troops on the border of Kuwait to the alarm of Egypt’s President Hosni Mubarak who started the negotiations between Kuwait and Iraq with an aim of avoiding the intervention by America or any other international system. He, however, ordered the invasion of Kuwait to the surprise of Hussein who had assumed the support of fellow Arab states as his aggressive actions were condemned by most members of the Arab League.

According to the Gulf States Newsletter (2003), the Soviet Union and Britain governments as well as the President of America, George W. Bush condemned the intrusion influencing the UNs council of security asking for the withdrawal of Iraqi from Kuwait on the third of August. This led to the military organization with the fighter planes of America Air Force’s arrival in Saudi Arabia accompanied by NATO allied troops together with various Arab nations aiming at the protection of possible attacks of Iraqi on Saudi Arabia.  Iraqi raised the occupation of its forces in Kuwait and Hussein went further declaring a jihad as a way to ask for support from other Muslim nations against the alignment. He further allied himself with the cause of Palestine by accepting to surrender Kuwait with the withdrawal of Israel from occupied regions as an offer in return. The failure of these efforts influenced Hussein to hastily enter into a peace agreement with Iran with an aim of fully empowering his army.

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The security council of the United Nations on 29th of November 1990 passed the use any possible levels of force in the opposition of Iraqi provided it fails to withdraw from Kuwait as from mid-January. The forces of the coalition were ready to fight against the Iraqi forces by January together with related forces from the United States, Germany, Britain, Egypt, France, Saudi Arabia as well as Japan. The Palestinian Liberation Organization, Jordan, Sudan, Algeria, Tunisia, and Yemen supported Iraq.In the morning of 17th January 1991, a solid America led air attack hit the air defenses of Iraq escalating to its networks of communication, oil refineries as well as their weapon plants (Kim, 2003). The efforts of the alignment called Operation Desert Storm had great benefits from the recent technological inventions in the military such as cruise missiles and stealth bombers. These quickly destroyed the air force of Iraq causing them to opt out of the battle under the continual attack which aimed at winning the war in space and minimizing the fighting on the ground.

The forces of the alignment shifted from space attacks to the Iraq forces on the ground by mid-February for about four days leading to the encircling and defeat of Iraq thereby liberating Kuwait.  Bush declared a truce with the realization of a collapse by the Iraqi resistance by the conclusion of February bringing the war to an end and recognizing Kuwait as a sovereign state influencing Hussein to retrieve all the weapons of mass destruction from Kuwait. Iraq and Kuwait were greatly damaged as much as the gulf war was a victory for the alignment resulting to further effects to the universe and the region of Persian Gulf. The forces of Hussein suppressed the uprising in the north and south of Iraq by the Kurds and the Shiites respectively with the fear of America to offer support. Aircrafts of British and the U.S continuously patrolled the Iraq air space making it a no-fly region as the authorities of Iraqi purposed to frustrate the implementation of peace terms. This eventually resulted to hostilities in the region (Wright, 2007).

America, under President George W. Bush, sponsored a resolution by the United Nations towards the return of weapons inspectors to Iraq in November 2002. Irrespective of the varied views between the member states of United Nation’s Security Council in relation to the proper manner in which Iraq followed the inspections, Britain and America started gathering their forces on the border of Iraq. The President of America issued an ultimatum without the United Nation’s approval on the 17th of March 2003 calling for the stepping down of Saddam Hussein as the president of Iraq thereby evacuating Iraq under a war threat. Hussein declined resulting in the second Persian Gulf War after three days also called the Iraq War.

There is need to exhaust diplomacy before using force in any situation there is always an ideal alternative to existing tensions and therefore key bodies like the UN have to provide guidance where necessary. Secondly, war is unpredictable as we see that leaders from the two sides participated in the war without making a choice to do so. Using diplomacy and not force can help avert this phenomenon. Additionally, people should remember history to avoid repeating the negative events of pastimes as they have a number of lessons which when followed properly, peace can be procured in the society.

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  1. Graham, Bradley (7 April 2003). “U.S. Airlifts Iraqi Exile Force For Duties Near Nasiriyah”. Washington Post. Retrieved March 21, 2017
  2. John, Pike (14 March 2003). “Free Iraqi Forces Committed to Democracy, Rule of Law – DefenseLink. Retrieved March 21, 2017
  3. Kim, Ghattas (14 April 2003). “Syrians join Iran Jihad” BBC News. Retrieved March 21, 2017
  4. “President Bush Meets with Prime Minister Blair”. 31 January 2003. <>Retrieved March 21, 2017.
  5. George W. Bush, “President’s Remarks at the United Nations General Assembly: Remarks by the President in Address to the United Nations General Assembly, New York, New York”, official transcript, press release, The White House, 12 September 2002. <> Retrieved March 21, 2017.
  6. “The Gulf in 2003” Gulf States Newsletter, complete 2003 PDF archive. <>  Retrieved March 21, 2017.
  7. Wright, Steven. The United States and Persian Gulf Security: The Foundations of the War on Terror. Ithaca Press: 2007. ISBN 978-0-86372-321-6.
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