My earliest television memory other than my Saturday morning cartoon ritual was watching Operation Desert Storm occur live. And since it was the first American war to have 24-hour news coverage — and since, like many families, we only had one TV — it was the only thing I saw.
Videos and stills of attack helicopters, Tomahawk missile launches, tank charges, and explosions cyclically ran through the commentary. To this day, I still remember hearing CNN’s Peter Arnett narrate the war in his calm Kiwi accent. All of this was happening as my parents kept their eyes diligently glued to the TV.
A burned out Iraqi tank during the first Gulf WarHarv Howard
It was the biggest show of military force since Vietnam. But unlike our endeavors in the east, the U.S.-led expulsion of Iraq from Kuwait was an overwhelming victory, one that the American people desperately both domestically and geopolitically. An awe-inspiring air campaign and three-day ground war, combined with the fact that the Soviet Union was on its last legs, put the U.S. back on track as the undisputed power of the world.
Interrogation of Iraqi prisoners in 1991.Harv Howard
Sandwiched between the U.S.’s previous financial support of Saddam Hussein’s regime during the Iran-Iraq War — one that transitively funded his invasion of Kuwait — and our ongoing headaches in Iraq brought on by the 2003 invasion, Operation Desert Storm highlighted everything America could do on the international stage. The mission was clear, and it was achieved with an abundance of moral and physical support from around the world. The U.S. will never experience a war like it ever again.
A Marine sits in his L.A.V. in Kuwait in 1991Harv Howard
Plus we got Lee Greenwood out of it. So that’s sort of a good thing, I guess.
Islamic state members walk in the last besieged neighborhood in the village of Baghouz, Deir Al Zor province, Syria February 18, 2019. (Reuters/Rodi Said)
NEAR BAGHOUZ, Syria (Reuters) - The Islamic State appeared closer to defeat in its last enclave in eastern Syria on Wednesday, as a civilian convoy left the besieged area where U.S.-backed forces estimate a few hundred jihadists are still holed up.
U.S. Air Force Airmen assigned to the 317th Airlift Wing walk to waiting family members and friends after stepping off of a C-130J Super Hercules at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, Sept. 17, 2018 (U.S. Air Force/Airman 1st Class Mercedes Porter)
The U.S. Air Force has issued new guidelines for active-duty, reserve and National Guard airmen who are considered non-deployable, and officials will immediately begin flagging those who have been unable to deploy for 12 consecutive months for separation consideration.