In the Wiki article here, it states that Iraq warned Kuwait it faced military attack on the 15th July 1990, and then exactly a week later, began deploying troops on the Kuwaiti border. Then, after 11 days of troop build-ups, they invaded Kuwait. Can anyone provide me with a condensed version of what was going on ‘behind the scenes’ during this period, and explain how the Iraqi’s were able to invade in the first place? Why were these troop build-ups permitted for almost two weeks? Surely it was blatantly obvious what Saddam’s intentions were, after his earlier warnings?
Classic example of ignoring intelligence that tells you what you don’t want to hear.
Some info here:
One thing you have to understand for every example of a nation that builds up troops on a border then invades you can find another example of a nation doing this and NOT invading.
The USA could do nothing till the Iraqis invaded. It’s a classic case of people thinking by virtue of who they are it’s a bluff.
For example in WWII, Belgium and the Netherlands refused to do anything to give Hitler an excuse to invade, even though all the intellegence said he would. The Dutch thinking “well we weren’t involved in WWI,” and the Belgiums saying “If we even talk to the French/English, the Germans will attack, so all we can do is hope.”
The only way the French/English could effectively plan against a German attack was to occupy positions IN Belgium and the Netherlands, which those countries refused to allow, stll hoping to avoid war. As the English predicted the Germans invaded and the low countries started screaming for help, but it the German advance was too quick.
Same for Iraq/Kuwait, Iraq said it would invade, but Arabs would not let any Americans on Arab soil to prevent it. The Gulf Countries seeing Iraq as all talk. Remember Iraq had just suffered 8 years of war ending only 3 years prior and no one thought he’d take over when he could simply keep exerting MUCH pressure.
Even if the US had known for certain there was simply NO WAY to get troops into Kuwait, before the invastion began and once it did Kuwait was small enough to take over quickly.
Such as the Soviet “guarantee” of Czechoslavakia" in WWII. Scholars are still divided if it was real or show. The Soviets said if Hitler marched in, they’d help, but the Poles and Romanians refused to allow passage (at the time, the Soviet Union had no common boundry with Czechoslavakia, it did after WWII though).
So if the Czechoslavaks resisted would the Soviet Union have violated Polish or Romanian space to get to Czechoslavakia? Or was it a hollow guarantee cause they knew they could always say “We would like to help but we can’t cross Polish or Romanian borders without their OK” Either way Czechoslavakia didn’t resist and the point became mute.
Much like the way Hitler took over the whole Czechoslavakia after Munich, Iraq had hoped to take over Kuwait quickly (which it did) and present the world with a “fiat accompli.”
Unless you are asking why Kuwait didn’t do anything and the answer is that were incapable of affecting the situation. Saudi Arabia could have done something, but it would have been reckless in the extreme considering the disparity in every area except in the skies.
Quite. Not even the U.S. has the air and sealift capability to project multiple divisions of heavy armor halfway across the globe on short notice. Remember also this was when Iraqi military strength, such as it was, was at its peak. Sheer numbers and position meant that it was a trickier proposition than Gulf War 2 in just about every way.
Fait accompli, and I must congratulate you: I’ve never seen that phrase misspelled or malapropped.