The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) office in the United States has just announced an event that it will host next week in Washington D.C. The purpose of the event will be to thank U.S. veterans involved in military and humanitarian operations in support of the people of Iraqi Kurdistan.
Thanking Veterans for Their Service in Iraq
The event will feature speeches from prominent individuals including Lt. General Michael Barbero, who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom, and who has argued, at length, for providing arms directly to the Kurds. Additional speakers include the KRG Representative to the United States, Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman, and Falah Mustafa Bakir, Head of the KRG Department of Foreign Relations.
The KRG has invited veterans of all military operations in Iraq to join them at the KRG Representation in Washington D.C. on July 30th. The event will also mark the 24th anniversary of the end of Operation Provide Comfort, and the start of Operation Provide Comfort II. It will be an opportunity for the Kurdistan Regional Government to thank all U.S. military personnel for their service in Iraq. If you are an Iraq service veteran in the D.C. area, you may follow the link below to RSVP.
History of U.S. Service in Iraq
Well over 2 million U.S. troops have served in Iraq over the course of the Gulf War, Operations Provide Comfort I & II, and Operations Iraqi Freedom & Enduring Freedom (also known as the Iraq War).
Following the end of the Persian Gulf War (Operation Desert Storm) in 1991, Saddam Hussein turned his attention towards suppressing the Kurds in Iraq. In response, the United States, along with coalition partners, initiated Operation Provide Comfort and Operation Provide Comfort II. During these operations, the United States helped protect and defend the Kurds in northern Iraq through the enforcement of a No-Fly Zone, which prevented Saddam from conducting airstrikes on the Kurds above the 36th parallel.
The creation of this safe haven allowed the Kurds to hold independent elections in 1992, which would lead to the creation of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). Years later, during the invasion of Iraq and the Iraq War in 2003, U.S. troops worked with the Kurdish Peshmerga and the KRG to defeat Saddam Hussein’s army in the north.