U.S. Marines in Kuwait

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Since the end of Operation Desert Storm in 1991, the liberated Kuwait has been host to thousands of U.S. marines stationed in and around Camp Doha. The alleged reason for this is to combat the apparent threat of aggression from Iraq. According to the Department of Defense, U.S. military presence in Kuwait is necessary to “maintain security and stability in the Gulf Region.”

During the next four years, Iraq did several things to provoke the U.S. troops in Kuwait into mobilization, including challenging U.S. flights over Iraqi territory in 1992, pressuring the Kuwaiti border in 1994, and planning to attack Kuwait in 1995. These infractions were responsible for the creation of TF-Kuwait, the U.S. Military Task Force of Kuwait.

In September 1996, Iraq involved itself in the Kurdish conflict in the northern portion of Kuwait. This prompted TF-Kuwait to mobilize and position itself above the 36th parallel, which is defined by the United Nations as off-limits to Iraqi forces. Additionally, it opened up Operation Desert Strike, which comprised of air raids and missile attacks on targets in Iraq. TF-Kuwait was activated in Kuwait until the end of Operation Desert Strike in 1996.

Following the end of the operation, the Kuwaiti government agreed to essentially a constant U.S. military presence in the country. The last activation of TF-Kuwait took place in December 1998, when Iraq disallowed U.N. inspectors to carry out their orders as per U.N. resolutions following Operation Desert Storm. American military force in Kuwait remains present to this day, though TF-Kuwait is, at this point, not mobilized. According to the DoD, their presence in Kuwait is to “deter aggression and help preserve peace in the region.” Joint Task Force-Kuwait maintains control over all U.S. forces in the country.

Using historical situations similar to the growing conflict with Iraq, some would consider the likelihood of Task Force-Kuwait being mobilized fairly high. The past twelve years...
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