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The task of the Air Force in Operaton Desert Storm was to obtain air superior ity provide air support for the ground troops strike enemy targets in Kuwait and Iraq and airlift Army and Marine forces When Operation Desert Storm was launched it was the Air Force that conducted most of the raids against the Iraqi military From air bases in Saudi Arabia Turkey England Egypt and the tiny island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean wave after wave of fighter bomber figh- ter planes and stategic bombers pounded Iraqi military positions in Kuwait and Iraq Many experts believe that the air strikes were responsible for the quick four- day ground war Seeing the destruction wrought by the Air Forces conven- tional bombs smart bombs and guided missiles it is hard to disagree with them B-52s pounded the Iraqi army day and night By the time the ground war had begun most of the Iraqi troops were ready to surrender F-15s F-16s F-111s Harriers A-10 Warthogs and an assortment of other sophistocated machines destroyed Iraqs communications centers bridges power plants chemical plants and munitions plants Thousands of tanks vehicles and artillery pieces were also destroyed by US air raids Desert Storm marked the first time in history that an air force had defeated an enemy before a ground war was launched The Armys task in Operation Desert Storm was to defend Saudi Arabia and win the ground war against Iraq Without the US Army Operation Desert Storm would not have been able to push Iraqi forces from Kuwait Their powerful firepower and speed with shich they struck made it impossible for Iraqi troops to maintain control of the land Most of Iraqs army fled at the sight of the army approaching Those who stayed and fought either surrend- ered or died The Iraqi military had never seen anything like it After relentless pounding by its heavy artillery the US Army launched its attack
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