Title: Gulf War Collection.
Date range of collection: 1990-1991.
Scope and content note: The collection contains postcard, leaflets and souvenirs produced during the Gulf War, 1990-1991. The postcards are primarily made up of American and French postcards, however there are also a small number of British postcards and tourist postcards produced in the Middle East. There are all forms of leaflets collected such as leaflets from peace rallies, a list of atrocities carried out by Saddam Hussein before the war, language cards, missing person poster, US leaflets addressing Iraqi troops and Kurdish and Arabic civilians and post war plan of action leaflets. In the souvenir part of the collection there are items such as stickers, menus and a list of the ships which were involved in the Gulf War.
Provenance: The collection came from a variety of sources.
Extent: 2 postcard albums, 15 folders and 1 solander box.
Location: Published & Digitised Collections, Research Centre, Australian War Memorial.
- Map Collection: Gulf War.
- Gulf War Newspaper Clippings.
- Greeting cards: Gulf War.
Copyright: Contact the Senior Curator, Published & Digitised Collections.
Preferred citation: Gulf War Formed Collection, Published & Digitised Collections, Australian War Memorial.
Gulf War 1990-1991
Iraq invaded its rival oil exporting neighbour, Kuwait on 2 August 1990. The invasion was widely condemned by the international community, and four days later the United Nations Security Council unanimously approved a trade embargo against Iraq. Iraq's access to the sea was blockaded within weeks, and the United States assembled a large multinational force in the Persian Gulf, and another in Saudi Arabia. By the end of 1990 this force numbered some 40,000 troops from thirty countries, though the United States was the dominant partner in the coalition.
In November, the UN Security Council set 15 January 1991 as the deadline for Iraqi forces to withdraw from Kuwait. The deadline passed without an Iraqi withdrawal, and on the 17 January coalition forces began an aerial bombardment of Iraq, which continued without respite until the war ended 43 days later.
On 24 February, after more than a month of aerial attacks, the coalition's ground forces moved against Iraqi positions in both Kuwait and Iraq itself. After two days of strikes, Bagdad radio announced that Iraq's armed forces had been ordered to withdraw from Kuwait to the positions they had occupied before August 1990. Two days after this order, the coalition ceased hostilities and declared victory.
Australia's involvement in the Gulf War included providing escort and logistic support during combat operations and continued long after the ceasefire in 1991. The Royal Australian Navy maintained a regular presence under Operation DAMASK, forming part of the Multinational Interception Force. Their task was to maintain United Nations sanctions on Iraq as part of the ceasefire arrangements. The tenth and last DAMASK deployment occured in mid-2001.
Peter Dennis et al , The Oxford companion to Australian military history (Oxford University Press, Melbourne,1995)
J. Bickerton , 43 days: the Gulf War (Text Publishing and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Melbourne,1991)
Sea Power Centre, RAN , Semaphore, Issue 6, June 2008 (Sea Power Centre, Canberra, 2008)