2003 invasion of Iraq

invasion of IraqIraq War2003 Iraq WarIraqinvasion2003 invasionOperation Iraqi Freedomwar in IraqU.S. invasion of IraqUS invasion of Iraq
The 2003 invasion of Iraq was the first stage of the Iraq War.wikipedia
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Iraq War

Operation Iraqi FreedomIraqwar in Iraq
The 2003 invasion of Iraq was the first stage of the Iraq War.
The Iraq War was a protracted armed conflict that began in 2003 with the invasion of Iraq by a United States-led coalition that overthrew the government of Saddam Hussein.

Coalition Provisional Authority

IraqCPACivilian administrator of Iraq
This early stage of the war formally ended on 1 May 2003 when U.S. President George W. Bush declared the "End of major combat operations", after which the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) was established as the first of several successive transitional governments leading up to the first Iraqi parliamentary election in January 2005.
The Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA; سلطة الائتلاف المؤقتة, هاوپەيمانى دەسەڵاتى كاتى) was a transitional government of Iraq established following the invasion of the country on 19 March 2003 by the U.S.-led Multinational Force (or 'the coalition') and the fall of Ba'athist Iraq.

Protests against the Iraq War

Protests against the 2003 Iraq waranti-war protestsMarch 20, 2010 anti-war protest
On 15 February 2003, a month before the invasion, there were worldwide protests against the Iraq War, including a rally of three million people in Rome, which the Guinness Book of Records listed as the largest ever anti-war rally.
Beginning in 2002, and continuing after the 2003 invasion of Iraq, large-scale protests against the Iraq War were held in many cities worldwide, often coordinated to occur simultaneously around the world.

Mission Accomplished speech

Mission Accomplished2003 Mission Accomplished SpeechMission Accomplished" speech
This early stage of the war formally ended on 1 May 2003 when U.S. President George W. Bush declared the "End of major combat operations", after which the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) was established as the first of several successive transitional governments leading up to the first Iraqi parliamentary election in January 2005.
Although Bush stated at the time "Our mission continues" and "We have difficult work to do in Iraq," he also stated that it was the end to major combat operations in Iraq.

Iraqi Army

New Iraqi ArmyArmyIraqi forces
On 26 March, the 173rd Airborne Brigade was airdropped near the northern city of Kirkuk, where they joined forces with Kurdish rebels and fought several actions against the Iraqi Army to secure the northern part of the country.
Following the invasion of Iraq by U.S. forces in 2003, the Iraqi Army was rebuilt along American lines with enormous amounts of U.S. military assistance at every level.

Battle of Nasiriyah

Nasiriyahfought through Nasiriyah
While special forces launched an amphibious assault from the Persian Gulf to secure Basra and the surrounding petroleum fields, the main invasion army moved into southern Iraq, occupying the region and engaging in the Battle of Nasiriyah on 23 March.
The Battle of Nasiriyah was fought between the US 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade and Iraqi forces from 23 March to 2 April 2003 during the US-led invasion of Iraq.

Ba'athist Iraq

IraqBaathist IraqIraqi
The invasion phase began on 19 March 2003 and lasted just over one month, including 21 days of major combat operations, in which a combined force of troops from the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and Poland invaded Iraq.
In 2003, U.S. and coalition forces invaded Iraq, and the Ba'athist Iraqi regime was deposed less than a month later.

Saddam Hussein

SaddamSadam HusseinSadaam Hussein
And while hundreds of chemical weapons were found in Iraq after the invasion, they determined to be produced before the 1991 Gulf War, from years earlier in Saddam Hussein's rule and were unusable.
In 2003, a coalition led by the United States invaded Iraq to depose Saddam, in which U.S. President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair erroneously accused him of possessing weapons of mass destruction and having ties to al-Qaeda.

Operation Northern Delay

airdroppeda combat jumpf Operation Northern Delay
On 26 March, the 173rd Airborne Brigade was airdropped near the northern city of Kirkuk, where they joined forces with Kurdish rebels and fought several actions against the Iraqi Army to secure the northern part of the country.
Operation Northern Delay occurred on 26 March 2003 as part of the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Tony Blair

BlairTonyPrime Minister Tony Blair
According to U.S. President George W. Bush and U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair, the coalition aimed "to disarm Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, to end Saddam Hussein's support for terrorism, and to free the Iraqi people."
During the War on Terror, he supported the foreign policy of the George W. Bush administration and ensured that the British Armed Forces participated in the War in Afghanistan from 2001 and, more controversially, the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Operation Southern Watch

Southern WatchOperation JuralOperation Bolton
The U.S. and its allies tried to keep Saddam in check with military actions such as Operation Southern Watch, which was conducted by Joint Task Force Southwest Asia (JTF-SWA) with the mission of monitoring and controlling airspace south of the 32nd Parallel (extended to the 33rd Parallel in 1996) as well as using economic sanctions.
United States Central Command's Joint Task Force Southwest Asia (JTF-SWA) had the mission of monitoring and controlling the airspace south of the 32nd Parallel (extended to the 33rd Parallel in 1996) in southern and south-central Iraq during the period following the end of the 1991 Persian Gulf War until the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

January 2005 Iraqi parliamentary election

Iraqi legislative election of January 2005democratic electionsJanuary 2005 elections
This early stage of the war formally ended on 1 May 2003 when U.S. President George W. Bush declared the "End of major combat operations", after which the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) was established as the first of several successive transitional governments leading up to the first Iraqi parliamentary election in January 2005.
The voting represented the first general election since the United States-led 2003 invasion of Iraq, and marked an important step in the transition of turning control of the country over from United States occupation forces to the Iraqis themselves.

Kuwait

State of KuwaitKuwaitiKWT
In preparation for the invasion, 100,000 U.S. troops assembled in Kuwait by 18 February.
In March 2003, Kuwait became the springboard for the US-led invasion of Iraq.

15 February 2003 anti-war protests

February 15, 2003 anti-war protest15 February 2003 anti-war protestFebruary 15, 2003
Opposition to the invasion coalesced in the worldwide 15 February 2003 anti-war protest that attracted between six and ten million people in more than 800 cities, the largest such protest in human history according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
On 15 February 2003, a coordinated day of protests started across the world in which people in more than 600 cities expressed opposition to the imminent Iraq War.

Bush Doctrine

aggressive foreign policyAmerican foreign policyBush doctrine of pre-emptive war
This announcement was accompanied by the doctrine of "pre-emptive" military action, later termed the Bush Doctrine.
The Bush Doctrine became strongly associated with the Bush administration's decision to invade Iraq in 2003.

Kirkuk

KerkukKarkukKerkük
On 26 March, the 173rd Airborne Brigade was airdropped near the northern city of Kirkuk, where they joined forces with Kurdish rebels and fought several actions against the Iraqi Army to secure the northern part of the country.
The city saw changes in population under the Ba'athist Arabization campaigns in North Iraq, after the 2003 invasion of Iraq, and later during the Iraqi Civil War (2014–2017).

Sanctions against Iraq

Iraq sanctionssanctionsUN sanctions against Iraq
This policy involved numerous economic sanctions by the UN Security Council; the enforcement of Iraqi no-fly zones declared by the U.S. and the UK to protect the Kurds in Iraqi Kurdistan and Shias in the south from aerial attacks by the Iraqi government; and ongoing inspections.
Whereas it was widely believed that the sanctions caused a major rise in child mortality, research following the 2003 invasion of Iraq has shown that commonly cited data were doctored by the Saddam Hussein regime and that "there was no major rise in child mortality in Iraq after 1990 and during the period of the sanctions".

Preparations for 2003 invasion of Iraq

US. policy on Iraqpreparing for the invasion of IraqAzores summit
In March 2003, the United States, United Kingdom, Poland, Australia, Spain, Denmark, and Italy began preparing for the invasion of Iraq, with a host of public relations and military moves.
The 2003 invasion of Iraq began on March 20.

Ansar al-Islam

Ansar Al IslamAnsarAnsar al-Islam (AAI)
This joint team (called the Northern Iraq Liaison Element (NILE)) combined to defeat Ansar al-Islam, a group with ties to al-Qaeda, in Iraqi Kurdistan.
Following the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the group became an insurgent group which fought against the Kurdish government, American led forces and their Iraqi allies.

Peshmerga

Kurdish Peshmergapesh mergaKurdish forces
The coalition forces also received support from the Peshmerga in Iraqi Kurdistan.
In the years after, tension remained high, but both parties moved towards each other, and in 2003 they both took part in the overthrowing of the Baathist regime as part of the Iraq War.

Uday Hussein

UdayUday Saddam HusseinDeath of Uday Hussein
In his 17 March 2003 address to the nation, Bush demanded that Saddam and his two sons, Uday and Qusay, surrender and leave Iraq, giving them a 48-hour deadline.
Following the United States-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, he was killed alongside his brother Qusay and nephew Mustapha by an American task force after a prolonged gunfight in Mosul.

Special Activities Center

Special Activities DivisionSADSAD/SOG
The Central Intelligence Agency's Special Activities Division (SAD) teams, consisting of the paramilitary operations officers and 10th Special Forces Group soldiers, were the first U.S. forces to enter Iraq, in July 2002, before the main invasion.
SAC/SOG units also defeated Ansar al-Islam in Iraqi Kurdistan prior to the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and trained, equipped, organized and led the Kurdish peshmerga forces to defeat the Iraqi Army in northern Iraq.

Weapon of mass destruction

weapons of mass destructionWMDNBC
About 5,000 chemical warheads, shells or aviation bombs were discovered during the Iraq War, but as these had been built and abandoned before 1991, the discoveries of these chemical weapons also did not support the government's invasion rationale.
The fear reached a crescendo with the 2002 Iraq disarmament crisis and the alleged existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq that became the primary justification for the 2003 invasion of Iraq; however, American forces found none in Iraq.

Blair ministry

Blair governmentLabour governmentgovernment
The vote was a key moment in the history of the Blair administration, as the number of government MPs who rebelled against the vote was the greatest since the repeal of the Corn Laws in 1846.
However, the Labour government had attracted controversy by sending British troops to fight in Afghanistan in the aftermath of the 11 September terrorist attacks on the United States in 2001, and even more so when it joined the American-led invasion of Iraq eighteen months later – particularly when it emerged that the ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's alleged weapons of mass destruction were never found, and serious questions were raised about the issue of going to war.

United Nations Special Commission

UNSCOMUnited Nations weapons inspectorUnited Nations Special Commission on Iraq
Details of the BW program—along with a chemical weapons program—surfaced in the wake of the Gulf War (1990–91) following investigations conducted by the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) which had been charged with the post-war disarmament of Saddam's Iraq.
Weapons inspector Scott Ritter later stated that Operation Rockingham had cherry-picked evidence found by the United Nations Special Commission; evidence, he says, that was later used as part of the casus belli for the 2003 invasion of Iraq.