After the 1991 Gulf War



The prosecution of the 1991 Gulf War by the US-led coalition was intended to serve a number of purposes. It was useful to demonstrate to the world that any grave threat to American interests would not be tolerated, particularly where these required the unimpeded supply of fuel to the world’s most energy-profligate nation. It was useful also to signal the new global power structure, the ‘New World Order’ in which a post-Cold War United States could operate without the bothersome constraint of another global superpower. It was essential in these circumstances that Iraq be mercilessly crushed. As the American academic and dissident Noam Chomsky pointed out, the much weaker opponent ‘must not merely be defeated but pulverised if the central lesson of World Order is to be learned: we are the masters and you shine our shoes’.1


Security Council World Order Cruise Missile Iraqi Government Iraqi People 
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  1. 5.
    A detailed account of how journalists were restricted in their efforts to cover the Gulf War is given by John R. MacArthur, Second Front, Censorship and Propaganda in the Gulf War, Hill & Wang, New York, 1992.Google Scholar
  2. 21.
    Mohamed Heikal, Illusions of Triumph, An Arab View of the Gulf War, HarperCollins, London, 1992, p. 289.Google Scholar
  3. 35.
    Louise Cainkar, ‘Desert sin: a post-war journey through Iraq’, in Phyllis Bennis and Michel Moushabeck (eds), Beyond the Storm, A Gulf Crisis Reader, Canongate, London, 1992, pp. 335–55.Google Scholar
  4. 128.
    For example, Chris Cowley, Guns, Lies and Spies, Hamish Hamilton, London, 1992;Google Scholar
  5. David Leigh, Betrayed, The Real Story of Matrix Churchill, Bloomsbury, London, 1993;Google Scholar
  6. John Sweeney, Trading with the Enemy, Britain’s Arming of Iraq, Pan Books, London, 1993.Google Scholar
  7. 150.
    General Sir Peter de la Billière, Storm Command, HarperCollins, London, 1992.Google Scholar
  8. 151.
    General H. Norman Schwarzkopf, It Doesn’t Take a Hero, Bantam, London, 1992.Google Scholar

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© Geoff Simons 1994

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