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In the early morning hours of 2 August 1990 Iraq sent an invasion force consisting of 120000 troops and 2000 tanks into the neighboring country of Kuwait Military Analysis Network Operation Desert Shield The invasion force quickly overwhelmed the small country to the south thus allowing Iraq to declare in less that a week that Kuwait had become Iraqs nineteenth province The United Nations quickly responded passing a series of resolutions condemning the invasion called for an immediate withdrawal of troops from Kuwait imposed financial and trade embargos and declared the annexation void President George Bush regarding the actions as a threat to a vital US interest namely the oil production capability of the Persian Gulf Region immediately ordered warplanes and ground forces to Saudi Arabia after obtaining King Fahds approval Military Analysis Network Operation Desert Shield Iraqi troops had begun to mass along the Saudi Arabian border indicating the possibility of an attack into the Saudi oil fields The first course of action lasted for five months from August 1990 until January 1991 The diplomatic community conducted furious and fast paced diplomatic activity aimed at getting Iraq out of Kuwait Two main issues were at the heart of the diplomacy the occupation itself and the matter of the hostages Iraq had detained and taken hostage a large number of foreign nationals that had been working in Kuwait and Iraq at the time of the invasion and threatened to use them as a human shield against a possible attack on Iraq During this time period the United Nations Security Council passed a total of 12 resolutions condemning the actions and calling for the withdrawal of Iraqi troops from Kuwait The last Resolution 678 was passed on 29 November 1990 and authorized the member states to use all necessary means to uphold and implement Security Council Resolution 660 and to restore international peace and security in this area unless Iraq fully complied
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