Waging War: Alliances, Coalitions, and Institutions of Interstate Violence

By Patricia A. Weitsman | Go to book overview

3
OPERATIONS DESERT STORM AND DESERT
SHIELD

THE GULF WAR HERALDED a new era in world politics. It punctuated the end of the Cold War and represented the advent of an age in which global challenges could be met with global solutions. The international community could come together to enforce the norms—in this case, sovereignty—of the system and to punish violators. Following so closely on the heels of the demise of bipolarity and East-West rivalry, the Gulf War suggested that global governance was accessible. The new world order proclaimed by George H. W. Bush seemed to be dawning.

Strategic context mattered powerfully in this case. It was the first unipolar case of intervention in the contemporary era, and it unfolded in the shadow of the end of the Cold War, with the attendant uncertainties and insecurities among states about the system that would ensue. The new epoch offered opportunities and constraints—opportunities for the United States to signal the kind of system it would oversee, the kind of hegemon it would be; it gave other countries opportunities to signal their continued allegiance to the United States and the chance to press the United States for sustained patronage. The Gulf War, more than any other case examined in this book, speaks to the post– Cold War world as much as it does to the eviction of Saddam Hussein’s forces from Kuwait. After fifty years of bipolarity, what would the new order bring? What constraints and opportunities would follow? It became evident, for example, that the absence of enduring Soviet-U.S. hostility meant that the United Nations could serve as a vehicle through which international problems could be managed, instead of a politicized arena in which Cold War politics played out. The United Nations need not be stymied by great power rivalry.

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Waging War: Alliances, Coalitions, and Institutions of Interstate Violence
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations viii
  • Acronyms xi
  • Acknowledgments xv
  • 1 - Introduction 1
  • 2 - Fighting with Friends 14
  • 3 - Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield 48
  • 4 - Operation Allied Force 74
  • 5 - Operation Enduring Freedom and the International Security Assistance Force 99
  • 6 - Operation Iraqi Freedom and the War in Iraq 132
  • 7 - Operations Odyssey Dawn and Unified Protector 164
  • 8 - Conclusion 188
  • Notes 199
  • Index 265
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