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The GulfThe Bush Presidencies and the Middle East$
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Michael F. Cairo

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780813136721

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813136721.001.0001

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Boots on the Ground

Boots on the Ground

(p.43) 3 Boots on the Ground
The Gulf

Michael F. Cairo

University Press of Kentucky

Moving to an application of the worldviews of George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, this chapter examines the decisions to go to war with Iraq. Beginning with George H.W. Bush, the chapter examines the administration’s policy toward Iraq prior to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. It then analyzes how George H.W. Bush and his administration responded to the invasion. Turning to George W. Bush, the chapter explores the pre-September 11th administration policy toward Iraq and the impact of the September 11th attacks on the United States on that policy. Returning to George H.W. Bush, the chapter explains how the president and his advisors pursued a policy of multilateralism, building a coalition to defend Saudi Arabia and, if necessary, evict Iraq from Kuwait. Finally, the chapter concludes by focusing on George W. Bush’s argument for regime change in Iraq, focusing on how the president and his advisors made that case. Throughout, the chapter demonstrates how the “enlightened” realist and “cowboy” liberal worldviews played a role in each administration’s decisions and policies.

Keywords:   Saddam Hussein, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, Operation Desert Shield, September 11, 2001, United Nations, Axis of evil, Al Qaeda, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Bush Doctrine

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