Nevada Appeal at 150: Jan. 17, 1991: U.S. at war; Bombs pound Iraq | NevadaAppeal.com

Nevada Appeal at 150: Jan. 17, 1991: U.S. at war; Bombs pound Iraq

The United States and its allies followed up devastating pre-dawn air strikes with daylight attacks today in a furious bid to drive Saddam Hussein’s armies from Kuwait and break his military might.

American military officials said the Iraqis offered minimal resistance, and that U.S. fighter-bombers would keep pounding away to prevent Saddam from marshalling his forces.

Defense Secretary Dick Cheney said at a morning pentagon briefing that one U.S. and one British aircraft had been lost.

The American plane was an F-18 Hornet fighter-bomber, and Cheney said the pilot was the first American combat death in Operation Desert Storm.

Cheney said U.S. and allied planes flew 1,000 sorties. Early targets in the raids on Iraq and occupied Kuwait included military bases and command and control centers. There was no way to assess civilian or military casualties, nor the extent of damage.

Cheney described the initial phase of the wear as “so far, so god.” But he cautioned against early assumptions of victory, saying: “There have been casualties and there are likely to be more casualties.”

This continues the Appeal’s review of news stories and headlines during its Sesquicentennial year.