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1993 cruise missile strikes on Iraq

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

1993 cruise missile strikes on Iraq
Part of Iraqi no-fly zones conflict and the Persian Gulf Conflicts
Date26 June 1993
Result Intelligence headquarters in Baghdad destroyed
 United States Iraq Iraq
Commanders and leaders
United States Bill Clinton
United States Colin Powell
Iraq Saddam Hussein
1 cruiser
1 destroyer
23 cruise missiles
Casualties and losses
None Unknown
9 civilians killed (Iraqi sources)

The cruise missiles strike on Iraq in June 1993 were ordered by U.S. President Bill Clinton as both a retaliation and a warning triggered by the attempted assassination by alleged Iraqi agents on former U.S. President George H. W. Bush while on a visit to Kuwait from 14–16 April 1993.[1]


On the night of 13 April 1993, a day before George H. W. Bush was scheduled to visit Kuwait City to commemorate the international coalition victory against Iraq in the Persian Gulf War, Kuwaiti authorities arrested 17 persons suspected in the plot to kill Bush using explosives hidden in a Toyota Landcruiser.

The Kuwaitis recovered the Landcruiser, which contained between 80 and 90 kilograms of plastic explosives, composed mostly of RDX, connected to a detonator (the Bush device or Bush explosive device). They also recovered ten cube-shaped plastic explosive devices with detonators (the cube-bombs) from the Landcruiser.[2]

Clinton was convinced the attack was masterminded by the Iraqi Intelligence Service by three compelling pieces of evidence. First, the suspects in the plot made detailed confessions to FBI agents in Kuwait, largely verifying that the Iraqi Intelligence Service was behind the attack.[3]

Second, FBI and CIA bomb experts linked the captured car bombs to the same explosives made in Iraq, including a 175-pound car bomb found in Kuwait City on 14 April.[4]

Third, intelligence reports confirmed that Saddam had been plotting to assassinate the former President for some time.[5][6]

In October 1993, New Yorker investigative journalist Seymour Hersh assailed the US government’s case as "seriously flawed', noting that seven bomb experts had told him that the devices were mass-produced and probably not even manufactured in Iraq.[7]

Cruise missile attack on Baghdad

Between 1AM and 2AM local time on 26 June/June 27, 1993, 23 Tomahawk cruise missiles were launched by two US Navy warships into downtown Baghdad. These hit a building which was believed to be the headquarters of the Iraqi Intelligence Service in the Al Mansur district of Baghdad. Iraq claimed that nine civilians were killed in the attack and three civilian houses destroyed. The missiles were fired from the destroyer USS Peterson in the Red Sea and the cruiser USS Chancellorsville in the Persian Gulf.[8]

Mission objective

Secretary of Defense, Les Aspin, stated in a June 27, 1993, interview with The Washington Post:[9]

"What we're doing is sending a message against the people who were responsible for planning this operation. . . . {If} anybody asks the same people to do it again, they will remember this message."

See also


  1. ^ Von Drehle, David & Smith, R. Jeffrey (27 June 1993). "U.S. Strikes Iraq for Plot to Kill Bush". The Washington Post. Retrieved 14 February 2011.
  2. ^ "The Bush assassination attempt". Department of Justice/FBI Laboratory report. Retrieved 6 May 2007.
  3. ^ Von Drehle, David & Smith, R. Jeffrey (27 Jun 1993). "U.S. Strikes Iraq for Plot to Kill Bush". The Washington Post. Retrieved 14 February 2011.
  4. ^ "The Bush assassination attempt". Department of Justice/FBI Laboratory report. Retrieved 6 May 2007.
  5. ^ U.S. Strikes Iraq for Plot to Kill Bush
  6. ^ Saddam Tried to Kill Bush I
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Cruise Missile Strike - June 26, 1993. Operation Southern Watch". Retrieved 19 March 2011.
  9. ^ Von Drehle, David & Smith, R. Jeffrey (27 Jun 1993). "U.S. Strikes Iraq for Plot to Kill Bush". The Washington Post. Retrieved 14 February 2011.

External links

This page was last edited on 2 January 2019, at 07:29
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