20 March 2003 to 15 December 2011
Iraq War: 2003-2011
“The Iraq War is better known to many as the Second Gulf War, a war that saw Saddam Hussein finally toppled from power. It was officially 5:34am in Baghdad on March 20th 2003 when the war began and the United States led a coalition of some forty countries into battle with Iraq. The action was swift as the coalition forces invaded Iraq at speed. The main bulk of the forces were US and UK forces but there were also Australian, Polish and other forces involved. The invasion while being quick and decisive was not as easy as first expected. The Iraqi forces were expecting an attack and devised their own plans in dealing with the coalition, this involved conventional warfare which turned to unconventional when larger coalition forces were in battle. An example would be the withdrawal of smaller Iraqi forces when facing a larger coalition force, the idea was to lure the coalition forces forward so Iraqi forces in civilian clothing could then attack in the rear. This move by the Iraq forces was successful in slowing the advance but did not stop the giant coalition war machine from completing their objectives. The coalition invasion combined land, air and water assaults and methodically moved through Iraq until it finally achieved its objective of controlling most of the large cities.
It was 15th April 2003 when the invasion was declared complete. Over the rest of 2003 the coalition forces began to hunt down and capture all government figures from the Saddam regime, this included the capture of Saddam Hussein himself in December 2003.
Through 2004 the Anti-Iraq forces insurgency grew dramatically with both coalition forces and civilians bearing the brunt of the attacks.
2005 saw the first election of an Iraqi government and the ratification of the Iraqi constitution, it also saw the heaviest insurgency to date.
2006 saw a small scale civil war start when a highly revered mosque was bombed by insurgents, this small scale civil war accumulated in the death of some 165 civilians.
2007 saw a massive increase in United States forces numbers in Iraq and this increase in troops coincided in a huge decrease in insurgent activity. It was also the year where the Iraq government voted in favour of coalition forces leaving the nation.
2008 saw Iraq finally able to start defending itself as the new Iraqi army was formed and its troops started completing basic training. This same year also saw a decrease in the number of insurgent attacks, although there was a spring offensive by insurgent groups.
2009 to date saw a reduction in troops in Iraq and a redeployment of coalition troops within the country. This was able to happen as the Iraqi armed forces started controlling security of their own nation. In 2009 American and Iraqi forces in a combined operation killed the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Ayyub al-Masri.”
Information above provided by the following source:
Fitzgerald, Peter. “Iraq War Summary.” The Finer Times: War, Crime and History Resource. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Jan. 2013.