Desert Storm: 25 Years later – Lessons from the 1991 Air Campaign in the Persian Gulf War

In the early morning of January 17, 1991, the United States launched the opening strikes of Operation Desert Storm. These missions unveiled new technologies, strategies, and tactics that forever changed the parameters of war. The pairing of stealth, precision and an effects-based strategy bridged the gap between the long-promised potential of aerial attack with the actual means of real-world employment. This publication is a 25-year retrospective, which opens with a summary of how the crisis arose in the Gulf in 1990, and how the coalition responded. The second part of this report presents five key perspectives from speakers who presented at a Mitchell Institute program held March 9, 2016.

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