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War in Iraq Began in 2003; Saddam Hussein was the president of Iraq.

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Presentation on theme: "War in Iraq Began in 2003; Saddam Hussein was the president of Iraq."— Presentation transcript:

1 War in Iraq Began in 2003; Saddam Hussein was the president of Iraq

2 The Background 1980-88 War between Iran and Iraq. The U.S. secretly supported Iran with weapons sales (Iran-Contra Scandal!), and more openly supported Iraq. Iran was a theocracy, led by radical Ayatollah Khomeini Under Saddam Hussein, Iraq was a secular state.

3 Kurds Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons against the Kurds, an ethnic minority in northern Iraq

4 Persian Gulf War, 1991 Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait The U.S. and many countries in the United Nations attacked Iraq and drove the Iraqis out of Kuwait The war lasted 6 weeks; Saddam Hussein surrendered.

5 1991-2003 As part of the peace agreement, Saddam Hussein had to allow the United Nations to send in weapons inspectors, who were looking for Weapons of Mass Destruction. Saddam Hussein tried to avoid these inspections regularly for 12 years

6 Weapons of Mass Destruction Nuclear weapons—Iraq was not accused of having these but was apparently working on developing one Biological weapons (example—anthrax or other deadly diseases that could be used against millions of people) Chemical weapons (example—mustard gas or cyanide--chemicals that cause severe burns, suffocation, death)

7 Operation Iraqi Freedom The U.S. attacked Iraq in 2003 because we believed Saddam Hussein was hiding weapons of mass destruction. No such weapons have been found since the US invasion. Baghdad is the capital of Iraq.

8 What happened to Saddam? He fled from Baghdad. He was later found and arrested. He was put on trial for crimes against his own people (killing 148 Shiites). He was found guilty and hanged.

9 Troop Surge In summer 2007, President Bush sent thousands more troops to try to end the violence in Iraq and establish peace and security. By a year later, most people agreed the troop surge was successful in reducing violence by insurgents, or rebels.

10 Iraqi Government Iraq had its first democratic elections in 2005 The 2010 elections ended without a clear majority: Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and President Allawi are from opposing parties. It took 9 months after the February election for them to form a coalition government.

11 Troop Withdrawal US combat operations officially ended in August 2010 A full withdrawal took place in December 2011. About 200 U.S. military personnel will stay in Baghdad as members of the U.S. diplomatic mission. 4,486 US troops died in Iraq since 2003

12 Why did we stay so long in Iraq? Helped end civil war between Sunnis and Shiites, both trying to control Iraq U.S. was trying to keep peace and establish security, supporting the elected Iraqi government We will continue to give support through our Embassy

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