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18 September 2014
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Recent History - Iraq: Conflict in Contextbbc.co.uk/history

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British Relations with Iraq

By Derek Hopwood
The invasion of Kuwait

Photograph showing an Iraqi soldier as he takes cover, during the Gulf War
An Iraqi soldier takes cover during the Gulf War 
The Iranians finally cracked, after terrible losses and when faced with weapons of mass destruction (poison gas) and missiles. Iraq had become the major power in the region, although after much suffering. Saddam's ambitions widened. He called for the elimination of the American presence in the Gulf, and for the extinction of Israel. To finance his aims he needed greater wealth and once again Iraqi eyes turned to Kuwait. This time, in 1990, Iraqi troops occupied and annexed the emirate - before the outside world could stop them. Meanwhile Iraqi historians expended much effort in trying to prove that Kuwait had always been an integral part of Iraq.

'He called for the elimination of the American presence in the Gulf...'

It took an enormous effort by United Nations forces, led by America, to expel the invaders. From being an ally of the world, Iraq became an outcast and every effort has been made by the United Nations to force Saddam to give up the weapons originally supplied by the west. Another invasion seems likely. Will British troops be seen once again in Mesopotamia?

Published: 2003-02-10



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